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, 01 November 2006 ,  Written by Andrew Robinson
Parasound A 52 Multi-channel Power Amplifier
Introduction Ahh, power amplifiers. Aside from loudspeakers, they are often the most touted products in the consumer electronics industry, and for good reason. Without them, there would be no music. They are charged with a great deal of responsibility and, while they may not look as sexy as some of their counterparts, they are without a doubt the backbone of every system. So, when a new amp is released, especially by a company as reputable as Parasound, one has reason to get excited. Officially launched in 2003, Parasound’s Halo line of components were specifically designed to bridge, or at least blur, the gap between ultra-performance and budget-conscious components. Solid performance at a reasonable price has always been Parasound’s bread and butter, so it was a bit of a gamble when they set out to challenge some of the industry’s most notable, and expensive, players. With the exception of maybe a handful of other companies, like ...
Sunday, 01 October 2006 ,  Written by Kevin Miller
Panasonic TH-50PH9UK 50-inch Plasma HDTV
Introduction Panasonic has just introduced the latest version of its commercial panel line, which many reviewers, me included, believe to deliver superior picture performance over their consumer line. The new 9UK series replaces last year’s 8UK series, and the TH-50PH9UK, the subject of this review, is certainly one of the best values in its category. Plasma panels have plummeted in price in the last year or so, and are now quite competitive with similar screen sizes in the LCD flat panel category. A year and a half to two years ago, most 50-inch plasma panels were in the $8,000 to $10,000 range. Today, this 50-incher can be found in the $3,500 to $4,000 range, depending on accessories, and will give just about any plasma in its size range a run for its money in terms of picture quality and performance. Design Panasonic’s industrial panels are a do-it-yourselfers dream. Simple and basic in design, the 9UK series ...
Tuesday, 01 August 2006 ,  Written by Adrienne Maxwell
Pioneer Electronics PureVision Elite PRO-930HD Plasma HDTV
Introduction As we inch closer to the DTV transition, many television manufacturers are hedging their bets as to which display technology—plasma, LCD or micro-display—will ultimately win our hearts and checkbooks. Some companies have chosen to offer both plasma and LCD flat panels; others can’t even narrow it down that much, bringing out product in every new display category. Pioneer has taken a road less traveled. The company is quite content to put all of its eggs in the plasma basket. (Okay, I’m done with the platitudes.) They no longer manufacture rear-projection TVs of any kind, nor do they offer panels smaller than 42 inches, since that would essentially require them to give LCD a serious look. As I write this, the Pioneer website lists a total of nine TVs on the roster, all plasmas ranging from 42 to 61 inches. If all you do is plasma, then you had better do it well. ...
Monday, 01 May 2006 ,  Written by Jeremy R. Kipnis
Purelink by Dtrovision HDS-41R HDMI 4x1 Switcher
Introduction Home theater enthusiasts are now most certainly in a digital world, both audio and very recently video. It is becoming increasingly important to be able to add new components and switch seamlessly between a wide variety of digital sources. These now include DVI (digital visual interface) and HDMI (high-definition media interface) as an interface, providing a one-cable digital solution for both picture and sound, as opposed to the multiplicity of analog cables required to watch HDTV, such as RGBHV or YPrPb. Unfortunately, because of a continuing desire by the motion picture and television industries to control the dissemination of their intellectual property (the movie, television show or video game itself), we now are all subject to varying degrees of digital connection irritation brought about by the inclusion of HDCP (high-definition copy protection). This copy management system inhibits the ability of any digital recorder (such as a Blu-Ray or HD-DVD disc recorder) to legally or illegally make ...
Saturday, 01 October 2005 ,  Written by Matthew Evert
PSB Image 5.1 Speaker System
Introduction PSB Speakers, aptly named after founders Paul and Sue Barton, have been producing high-performance loudspeakers since 1972. Paul Barton, the chief speaker designer, had his beginnings in high school putting together speakers for college students. Now one of Canada’s most reputable names in loudspeakers, PSB with Paul Barton at the helm, continues the craft of speaker design that started 30 years ago. In addition to Paul Barton’s passion and dedication to speaker design, PSB has a close relationship with the National Research Council (NRC). The NRC offers nearly a century of knowledge and test resources in the area of psychoacoustics research that PSB has effectively incorporated into their Image Series speakers. The midlevel price range of the Image Series speakers affords precision sound reproduction to those with limited budgets. The PSB Image Series speakers reviewed consisted of the Image T65 main loudspeakers ($1099 per pair), an Image C60 center channel ($449), two Image S50 surrounds ...
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