Home Theater Speakers

Vizio SB4051-D5 5.1-Channel Sound Bar Review

While I love the sound quality that a full-bore home theater system offers, sometimes all a user really needs is simplicity. Whether for a bedroom system, or a small family room or den, sound bars answer the call of many users by offering good sound and great ease of use in a very cost-effective package. The Vizio SB4051-D5 Sound Bar System takes things a bit further, as it is a true 5.1 channel package with a dedicated subwoofer and real surround speakers.

Sabian 20″ HHX Manhattan Jazz Crash-Ride Cymbal

Sabian's HHX series is specified as "Modern Dark . . . drier, dirtier, funkier". The word "Dark" translates to lots of low frequency undertones, and I think, after having analyzed quite a few cymbals, "dirtier" means more midrange wash . . . more "SHHHHH" to the sound. We recently reviewed the 18" Manhattan Jazz Crash, and now turn our attention to the 20", which, although classified as a ride cymbal, I consider it to work well as a crash/ride.

Howard Leight Noise-Blocking Stereo Earmuffs

Most of us use portable players at least now and then to listen to our music, using earbuds. But what if there is a lot of ambient noise, such as on an airplane, or if you are in a Starbucks enjoying a refreshment while you are using your laptop, or if you are playing in a band and want to hear not only your own instrument (in my case, it is the drums), but the other musicians and a click track, while the audience is nearly as loud as you are? Noise-reducing over-the-ear headphones are the answer, and the unit reviewed here, the Howard Leight Sync Noise-Blocking Stereo Earmuffs are an inexpensive and very effective solution.

Anthem MRX 700 7.1 A/V Receiver

Anthem has long been recognized as a leading manufacturer of processors and amplifiers. Anthem's AVM series processors have always offered a tremendous blend of functionality and performance. With the introduction of the Anthem Room Correction (ARC) system, Anthem took things a step further by offering one of the finest room correction systems on the market. While all of this capability and performance was available to those with the budget and space for separates, Anthem did not offer a solution for those looking for an A/V receiver - until now. The Anthem MRX 700 is the subject of this review.