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Sunday, 01 July 2007 ,  Written by Kevin Miller
Mitsubishi HC5000 LCD Video Projector
Introduction It has been raining 1080p HDTVs in all the different display categories, and the front-projection arena has a slew of new high-resolution models at surprisingly aggressive price points for consumers to choose from. There are three display technologies dominating front projection. They are LCD, LCoS (Liquid Crystal on Silicon), which is a derivative of LCD, and DLP (Digital Light Processing). Unlike most manufacturers, Mitsubishi is betting on two horses in this race, as they currently make and sell both LCD and DLP front projectors. Their recently introduced HC5000 is the company’s first 1080p front projector. A three-panel LCD projector, the HC5000 is Mitsubishi’s flagship model at the time of this review. There is no display technology where this vaunted high resolution can be appreciated more then with front-projection systems where we can create truly large cinematic viewing experiences in the home. Design Modest and basic are the first two words that come to mind when I contemplate ...
Sunday, 01 July 2007 ,  Written by Brian Kahn
Monster MPA 5150 Multi-channel Power Amplifier
Introduction The ever-present Monster Cable brand is expanding. Not a company to rest on its laurels, Monster’s vast portfolio of products will now include power amplifiers to go along with a robust offering of cables, accessories, furniture, speakers and beyond. Monster power amplifiers, like their recently reviewed loudspeakers, are not being prominently promoted on their own, but rather as part of an entire Monster products solution. One day you will be able to walk into a Monster Cable M Design dealer and purchase an entire Monster system. The Signature MPA 5150 five-channel reference power amplifier ($3,500) is one of three amplifiers in the Monster Power amplifier lineup. The MPA 5150 is a five-channel amplifier rated at 150 watts per channel into eight ohms and 250 watts per channel into four ohms. The MPA 5150 chassis is anything but your ordinary black box amplifier. The styling is consistent with Monster’s line of power conditioners. The 75-pound, 17-inch-wide ...
Friday, 01 June 2007 ,  Written by Brian Kahn
McIntosh C220 Stereo Preamplifier
Introduction Ask someone who was into audio in the early days of high end for the names of their favorite high-end audio brands and McIntosh is bound to be mentioned in their first breath. McIntosh has been an icon in the high-end audio world for over 50 years. McIntosh components have long been recognizable by their elegant black glass faceplates, silver trimmed knobs and blue back-lighting. McIntosh’s newest and least expensive preamplifier, the C220, combines the Old World luxury McIntosh is so well known for with modern performance features, all without breaking the bank. The C220 is a full-featured, tube-based stereo preamplifier that retails for a reasonable $3,300. Some may categorize the C220 as a purist design, as it makes no accommodations for multi-channel or home theater integration as most $3,000 preamps do. However, to consider the C220 a simple stereo preamplifier would be to severely underestimate it. As you will see below, the C220 is ...
Sunday, 01 April 2007 ,  Written by Andrew Robinson
Mark Levinson No. 433 Triple Mono Power Amplifier
Introduction There are few high-end audio brand names that carry with them such universal admiration as Mark Levinson. The mere mention of Mark Levinson components conjures up feelings of quality, luxury and lust that I can only equate with brands at the level of, say, Patek Philippe, the Four Seasons resorts and perhaps even Lexus. Since the late 1970s, Mark Levinson gear has been the subject of many audiophiles’ dreams and has kept consumers and even modest editors wondering how they can spend their tax returns to land such well-crafted audio reproduction gear. When you find out a Mark Levinson amp is coming your way, even if you are a jaded reviewer, you get excited. The Mark Levinson No. 433 is a first for the brand, in that it’s not only a true multi-channel amp, but it is also a long-awaited solution for the company’s customers and dealers who have moved into home theater and ...
Thursday, 01 February 2007 ,  Written by Bryan Dailey
Microsoft Xbox 360 HD DVD Drive
Introduction This past holiday season, as people lined up in droves to try to get their hands on a Blu-ray-equipped Sony Playstation 3 video gaming console, little attention was paid to the fact that Microsoft was rolling out their external HD DVD player drive for the already well-established Xbox 360 system. With a base price of $399 for the 20-gig Xbox 360 and $199 for the add-on external HD DVD drive, Microsoft was able to essentially match Sony stride-for-stride in the high-definition format war for just about the same price, as a 20-gig PS3 costs $499 and the 60-gig PS3 is priced at $599. Both systems’ HD disc players can be operated with the game pads, but Microsoft has chosen to include a full-featured infrared remote with their $199 HD DVD player. The Sony PS3 Blu-ray drive controller will set you back another $25. You get a little more hard drive space and a ...
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