When designing a home theater, the screen is often the last consideration in the plan. After all, it's much more interesting to research electronics and their associated specs than to look through screen material samples and frame designs. Other than size, few of us think much about our choice of screen. Screen Innovations markets projection screens in all sizes, aspect ratios, and gain (screen brightness). In this review, we take a look at their Black Diamond Zero Edge projection screen.
One of the last times I had the good fortune of seeing R.L. Burnside live and in person, I was crashed out on his hotel room floor in Atlanta at 8AM with a raging hangover and little recollection of the previous night's show. His drummer/grandson...
While I was at CES 2011 last January, I had the opportunity to listen to a speaker demonstration from a company called GoldenEar Technology.
Marc Audio started its business of marketing quality audio cables in its on-line store only two years ago. They did not have all of their products available at the time of launch, so we reviewed what they had, as they became available. These included the Reference Line and the Signature Line. The Reference Line is their most expensive cable, but at $870/meter-pair for the RCA interconnects, they are not all that pricey compared to many other cables out there. The Signatures are their mid-priced cables ($549/meter-pair for RCA interconnects). Now, Marc Audio has introduced the Premium Line, which is their least expensive line of cables, at $158/meter-pair. Their construction quality - and more importantly - their performance, belie their very reasonable price, and I think they are one of the best values in cables out there.
Sales figures for home theater components are not something I really pay attention to. I'd much rather own something that works great than to have what's popular, or to have my opinion influenced by sales numbers. However, I'd be willing to bet that Panasonic has done pretty well with their 3D Blu-ray players this year because of one huge advantage they have over everyone else: The ability to include Avatar 3D for consumers. And now, you can get a 3D Blu-ray player for $200: the Panasonic DMP-BDT210.
McIntosh Laboratory is well known for producing some of the finest quality luxury audio components on the market. I've always been a fan of McIntosh products and I enjoyed visiting the McIntosh suite at CES 2011 this past January. I was intrigued by the MX150 A/V Control Center, which is McIntosh's take on the ultimate home theater processor (SSP). I asked for a review sample, and a few months later couldn't believe that I actually had an MX150 on my front porch.
On September 10, 2011, one day before the 10th anniversary of 9/11, composer Christopher Theofanidis' first opera, Heart of a Soldier, has its world premiere at San Francisco Opera. A modern day hero's journey / love story, the opera tells the tale of Rick Rescorla, a multi-decorated Vietnam war hero who, years later, rescued over 2700 people from the World Trade Center before perishing in the Twin Towers collapse.
Almost every manufacturer these days is including some type of network support in their products. From receivers that connect to home music servers and disc players that stream music and video from the internet, we have lots of options for enjoying content with our home entertainment systems. While Marantz has been including network support in their products for a while, they have not offered a stand-alone network streamer until now: The NA7004 streams music from your computer, the Internet, and even USB thumb drives.
Ever since Louis Daguerre took the first photograph and Thomas Edison lowered the needle on the first phonograph, media has been a part of our lives. The reproduction of still and moving images and sound is an art form that we are unlikely to see the zenith of in our lifetimes. Since the early part of the twentieth century, sound and video reproduction usually came in the form of magnetic tape, film or vinyl records. Now with the proliferation of digital storage methods, evolution has accelerated. The Apple TV second generation media streamer tosses the hard drive storage from first generation model. What does it add? Read our review to see for yourself . . . .
Paradigm has made a name for itself around the globe for delivering speakers that are consistently strong in accuracy, gigantic soundstage, very precise imaging, deep, powerful bass (which usually significantly increase the cost of other speaker manufacturers offerings) all while keeping the cost below the competition. They do all engineering in house, all speaker component manufacturing in house, all assembly in house and all testing in house. #1 Best Price/Value for 20 years in Inside Track Magazine and #1 Overall 6 times. The MilleniaOne is a satellite speaker that can be used in all five (or seven) channels, along with a subwoofer. Only the MilleniaOne satellite speakers (set of five) are reviewed here.