equipment reviews
This Month's Featured Equipment Reviews
Merrill Audio THOR Mono Block Amplifiers Review
Plinius Hautonga Integrated Amplifier Review
KEF R700 Loudspeaker Review
Marantz SA-14S1 SACD Player & DSD DAC Review
Genesis G7c Loudspeakers
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Friday, 17 September 2010 ,  Written by Dick Ward
 Selecting a new projector can get confusing fast.  There's so much to think about – your room size, screen size, amount of ambient light and your budget – that buying new gear can stop being fun and start being a chore.   To help you out, we've compiled a list of some of the best projectors around at a variety of price ranges.  We've listed the manufacturer's price for all the projectors in the list, since the street prices can change pretty dramatically depending on the dealer or store.Optoma HD8600 (MSRP: $7,499)Optoma is known for their projectors, and the HD8600 is a great indicator of why.  This flagship projector, released in 2009, is one of the best around, especially at a price point of under $10,000.  It's bright, it's sharp and it's got great black level performance.  This single chip DLP ...
Wednesday, 01 September 2010 ,  Written by Mike Flacy
New Apple TV, iPod Lineup, Social Networking for iTunes
Today, Apple held their music keynote complete with Chris Martin from Coldplay finishing out Steve Jobs announcements of their fall lineup of Apple products with a couple popular Coldplay hits.  Apple rolled out a variety of new announcements, the most exciting being a simplified version of the Apple TV, a sleeker, smaller version of the iPod Nano complete with a touchscreen like the iPhone and a new social network called Ping for iTunes users. 4 years since the last version of the Apple TV hit store shelves, Steve admitted that it really wasn’t a bit hit in their product lineup.  Their research indicated that consumers were less than impressed with the similarities to the computer, didn’t want to manage storage and didn’t want to sync content from device to device.   The second generation of the Apple TV solves these problems ...
Thursday, 05 August 2010 ,  Written by Mike Flacy
Netflix Versus Hulu Plus
Regarding consumable media such as feature length films and television shows, the paradigm is slowly shifting from using physical media into the downloadable realm.  Made popular by the DVR, more consumers want to see television shows on their own schedule,  Ironically, the need for services like Tivo is waning as more television shows and movies are being played online through services like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon on Demand, etc…  Recently, the young Internet media giant Hulu announced a premium service for their website called Hulu Plus.  Hulu Plus offers expanded access to Hulu’s library of shows from ABC, FOX and NBC.  (Hulu is currently in talks with CBS for access to their library of shows)  The service is priced at $10 a month and can be access on home theater PCs, Internet enabled TVs / Blu-ray players, the Playstation 3 ...
Monday, 07 June 2010 ,  Written by Mike Flacy
Netflix Goes Mobile, iPhone 4 Hits the WWDC
Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference kicked off this morning with Steve Jobs keynote.  The highlight of the conference is the impending release of the new iPhone, dubbed the iPhone 4.  Here's a breakdown of the hardware upgrades to this generation of the iPhone:The camera has been upgraded to a 5-Megapixel model with a 5x digital zoom.  It also records HD video at 720p as well (30 fps).  The iPhone 4 comes with a LED flash on the rear camera which can stay on during video recording.  Video can be edited within the new iMovie application as well ($4.99).  Apple also stressed that their "backside illuminated sensor" would improve picture quality rather then increasing Megapixels on the rear camera.The iPhone 4 also comes with a front facing camera for self-portraits or the "FaceTime" video chat tool.  Facetime is only compatible over Wi-Fi ...
Thursday, 03 June 2010 ,  Written by Mike Flacy
Google TV versus Apple TV: Who Will Dominate the Home Theater?
We are on the cusp of Apple’s WWDC conference on June 7th where they will be announcing the much talked about iPhone 4 and a new line of iPod Touches, possibly with built-in cameras.  What hasn’t leaked out is the direction that Apple will be talking their Apple TV line.  By comparison to the iPod / iPhone / iPad, Apple TV (our review) hasn’t seen the breakout and rampant success of those products.  In many ways, the Apple TV works as a complimentary component if you already invested in other Apple products.  For instance, you can treat it as a music server and select play lists via an iPhone / iPod Touch with the Remote app.  Interestingly, Apple TV has never interacted with the App store, a fact that may change on Monday.  Apple TV is also a closed system, ...
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