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Monday, 01 April 2002 ,  Written by Jerry Del Colliano
Madrigal MPD-1 HD-ILA Video Projector
Introduction One of the most exciting sectors in the audio-video marketplace right now is the realm of the new fixed-pixel digital projectors, powered by technologies such as DLP and D-ILA. For years, analog CRT projectors have ruled supreme for video enthusiasts, but the size, cost and constant need for maintenance made it hard to say "yes" to the devices. The new fixed-pixel projectors use chip(s) and very bright lamps to create a video picture that is exponentially brighter than a CRT by means of a physical projector that is a fraction the size and weight of the old models. The added convenience has made large-scale front-projection video possible for more and more people who are now building real home theaters into their homes. Madrigal Imaging's MPD-1 video projector is a $26,000 projector based on the D-ILA technology created by JVC. In fact, the MPD-1 is a modified projector from JVC with both cosmetic and performance enhancements. ...
Monday, 01 April 2002 ,  Written by Bryan Southard
Mark Levinson No. 32 Reference Stereo Preamplifier
Introduction When Mark Levinson announced they would be introducing a $16,000 preamp ($18,500 with the phono section) there was a group of long time loyalists who scurried to authorized dealers to put down deposits while other audiophiles and music enthusiasts simply shook their heads in amazement. $16,000 is a lot of money for a preamp even for the first “Reference” preamp from Mark Levinson. I’d be lying to say I wasn’t just a bit curious as to what Madrigal could do if cost was no object and with the No. 32 clearly cost isn’t the concern – performance is. With time and dramatic changes to my music system, the need (OK you can call it a lust) for a reference preamp became evident. I arranged for a review sample and then the fun began. After unpacking, careful inspection revealed a beautifully designed and assembled product. The No. 32 looks great with its twenty first ...
Friday, 01 March 2002 ,  Written by Bryan Dailey
Microsoft Xbox
Introduction With a few exceptions, playing video games on a console has always been a more enjoyable experience than on a home computer. In the '80s, the simplicity of popping a game cartridge into an Atari 2600 or Intellivision and blasting aliens on the family television set hooked millions of Gen-Xers on technology. Personal computers soon found their way into homes around the world and computer games soon followed, but something just wasn’t right with them. The controllers were sub par, often requiring the player to control the onscreen action with a keyboard via the arrow keys. The computer speakers were all horrible, the monitors were too small and the systems would often lock up. When I heard that Microsoft was going to be putting out a Windows-based video game system called the Xbox, visions of the blue error screen of death (For all you Mac and Linux users, this is what you get ...
Monday, 01 October 2001 ,  Written by Brian Kahn
McIntosh MC602 Stereo Power Amplifier
Introduction Pride of ownership. That was the first thought that came to mind as I unboxed the first of the three McIntosh Laboratories MC602 power amplifiers. This massive amplifier, at $8,000 is not McIntosh’s most expensive amp, but it is the most powerful in this manufacturer’s long history. The MC602 is a solid-state stereo amplifier rated at 600 watts per channel. This large amplifier weighs 155 pounds and measures 17.75 inches wide, 11 inches high and 19.6 inches deep. The front panel is dominated by two large, lighted blue meters, which are flanked by sturdy handles. Below the meters is an illuminated McIntosh logo and two knobs. The left knob controls the meters, and can be set to normal operation where the meter displays the current output in watts for that channel. The left knob also has a hold position in which the meter pauses to display peak output and a lights-off position. The right ...
Saturday, 01 September 2001 ,  Written by Tim Hart
Marantz SR-19EX Receiver
Introduction As more big-budget, blockbuster and effects-laden movies are being released in new formats such as DTS ES 6.1 and 7.1 , the choices expand in new receivers that take advantage of these exciting formats. Separate components allow the flexibility to get the best performance and the ability to change a single aspect of your system to take advantage of the latest technology without replacing your entire rig. However, most of us aren’t in the financial position to have "Best of Breed" gear and must remain financially realistic when it comes to spending our hard-earned deneros. And, let’s face it, not all people like to search for the perfect component to highlight the rest of a system. Some folks want a centerpiece that has a good reputation for reliability, performance, versatility and, if possible, upgradeability. One serious contender in this area that commands consideration is the Marantz SR-19EX AV receiver ($2,299.95). At seven-and-one-half-inches wide, 18 inches ...
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