equipment reviews
This Month's Featured Equipment Reviews
ZenWave Cables and SurgeX ZenWave Edition Review
REDGUM BLACK RGi35ENR Integrated Amplifier Review
Linear Tube Audio MicroZOTL 2.0 Headphone Amp & Preamp Review
iFi Micro iUSB 3.0 & Gemini USB Cable Reviews
Marantz M-CR611 Network CD Receiver Review
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Wednesday, 02 April 2008 ,  Written by
Salamander Designs Archetype 5.0 Rack
The Salamander Archetype 5.0 rack is a simple and utilitarian five-shelf rack, consisting of four five-eighths-of-an-inch threaded rods and five shelves. The Archetype 5.0 system measures 36 inches high by 23 inches wide and 16 inches deep. These racks don’t offer any high-tech vibration control or component isolation. Shelves are secured to the rods with large nuts, washers and rubber gaskets and, as such, are infinitely adjustable, making them adapt easily to your system as it changes. Salamander offers an extensive list of add-on accessories, including drawers, rear panels, wire management, arched bookends and two caster options. Heavy-duty spikes are also available for floor contact, allowing them to be configured as much more than just audio stands. Shelves are available in black or solid hardwood in Cherry, Maple and Walnut, with black threaded rods. Extra shelves and rods can be ...
Wednesday, 02 April 2008 ,  Written by
Silent Running Audio Craz Reference isoRack plus
SRA’s Craz Reference isoRack plus is one seriously over-built rack, weighing a small ton and offering multiple levels of vibration isolation. The solid wood frames and heavy shelves keep your components free from interference from each other and the surrounding environment, while also offering great looks. I love these racks and think they offer some of the best science in the business. Each Craz rack is designed and built from the ground up for your system. With adjustable mass loading support systems and technology so high-tech it’s still classified, these are sure to give your high-end gear one of the best seats available. They can be made in dozens of colors to match your room. The Craz8 is a side-by-side version available for larger systems. Prices start at about $7,000 and go up from there, depending on how you spec ...
Tuesday, 01 April 2008 ,  Written by Kevin Miller
Sony VPL VW200 SXRD Video Projector
Introduction Sony’s latest top-of-the-line front projector effectively replaces the company’s original flagship SXRD projector, the Qualia 004. The new VPL-VW200 is not only superior in performance to the original statement piece, but also half its price. It is amazing how quickly things change in the world of video. The VPL-VW200 is a three-panel LCoS (Liquid Crystal on Silicon)-based unit with a native resolution of 1080p. Probably the most impressive aspect of its performance, once you have it set up properly, is its color accuracy. In fact, it is the most color accurate front projector under $30,000 that I have tested. Nothing at or near its price ($15,000) can come close to the performance of the VPL-VW200 in terms of color. I am a big stickler when it comes to color accuracy, and my latest pet peeve has been inaccurate primary and secondary ...
Wednesday, 19 March 2008 ,  Written by
Sony Bravia KDL-52XBR5 LCD HDTV
The Basics: Sony’s XBR4 and XBR5 lines represent the company’s top-of-the-line 2007 LCDs; the two lines are distinguished by aesthetic differences but offer similar features and performance. The XBR5 Series is the more expensive of the two, sporting a high-gloss piano-black frame surrounded by a clear acrylic border. The KDL-52XBR5 is a 52-inch, 1080p model. The TV’s generous input panel includes three HDMI inputs that accept 1080p/60 and 1080p/24 and two component video inputs that accept 1080p. The XBR5 also adds an RS-232 control port to the back panel, in order to integrate the TV into an advanced control system. The KDL-52XBR5 has a lot of aspect ratio options, including a zero-overscan mode. The KDL-52XBR5’s marquee feature is its Motionflow 120Hz technology, which doubles the TV’s frame rate from 60 to 120 Hz to minimize the appearance of judder and render smoother motion. ...
Wednesday, 19 March 2008 ,  Written by
Sharp Aquos LC-52D64U LCD HDTV
The Basics: Sharp’s D64U Series is also dubbed the Slim-line Series, as these LCDs have 25 percent less depth, 20 percent less weight and a thinner bezel surrounding the screen. Screen sizes range from 32 to 65 inches; the LC-52D64U is a 52-inch, 1080p model with a traditional CCFL backlight, gloss-black frame, and a thin silver speaker bar that runs discreetly along the bottom of the unit. The TV has a healthy connection panel that includes three HDMI 1.3 inputs and two component video inputs, all of which accept 1080p/60 but not 1080p/24. Sharp kindly puts both an HDMI and a component video input on the side panel for easier access when the TV is wall-mounted. An RS-232 port is on board to integrate the TV into an advanced control system, and a USB port is available for software upgrades. There’s a ...
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