LATEST ADDITIONS

Ken Richardson Posted: Oct 22, 2013 0 comments
Also: Van Morrison’s Moondance in 5.1 on Blu-ray, Santana’s third album on audiophile vinyl, and ’80s tunes revamped by The Big Bright. Plus, let’s see…oh, yeah, Katy Perry.

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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Oct 22, 2013 3 comments
Maybe I’m still suffering the aftereffects of installation overstimulation at CEDIA last month, but it seems that everywhere I turn someone’s talking up home automation. Yesterday, for example, Control4 issued a press release touting – and rightly so – the many benefits of integrating home security systems with home automation systems. While that’s definitely awesome, the more interesting buzz that I’ve noticed lately isn’t about Home Automation, where the cost of the hardware, installation, and programming is often discussed in terms of a percentage of the cost of the home it’s installed in. No, the chatter du jour is about home automation “for the rest of us” (to borrow a term from Apple that originally had nothing to do with price, nor does it now). Once again, there’s a push to bring home automation to the masses – or at least to the smaller masses who would be willing to spend a couple hundred bucks for it.

But what kind of home automation can you get for $200 or maybe, if you’re willing to splurge, $300?

Bob Ankosko Posted: Oct 22, 2013 0 comments
Hands on with Walmart’s Vudu In-Home Disc to Digital Service and Disney’s Digital Copy+

Walmart’s Vudu To Go app (Digital Vudu Revisited), a follow-up to the Disc to Digital service launched last year that lets you unlock digital copies of DVD and Blu-ray movies you buy or purchase digital rights to discs you already own, is now up and running (in beta form as of this writing). Unlike the original service, which required you to bring discs to Walmart (UltraViolet: Building a Movie Library in the Cloud,), the app lets you convert discs from a Mac or Windows-based PC in your home and store them in the cloud so they can be accessed for streaming or downloading on multiple devices.

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Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Oct 21, 2013 0 comments
Performance
Build Quality
Value
PRICE $1,795

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Includes lens and projector attachment mount
Accommodates 8- to 18-foot focal distance
Minus
Some loss of horizontal resolution
Finicky setup/installation process

THE VERDICT
The CineVista lens provides a brighter and more detailed-looking image for ultra-wide movies on a 2.35:1 projection screen.

High-def televisions and projectors have an aspect ratio of 16:9. And all native HDTV content comes in that same format, which is also known as 1.78:1. It’s a different situation, however, for movies. Many blockbuster releases from the 1950s onward have a much wider aspect ratio of 2.25:1 or 2.40:1 (often called CinemaScope). When you watch these on your TV, the result of the mismatch is black bars at the top and bottom of the screen.

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Steve Guttenberg Posted: Oct 21, 2013 2 comments

Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $399

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Euro design
Real lambskin ear pads
Oodles of detail and resolution
Minus
Not vegan friendly

THE VERDICT
A beautifully balanced headphone that’s beautiful to look at.

Bang & Olufsen isn’t just another high-end audio company. Far from it. The Danish firm started making TVs in 1952, and their 1970s turntables were the best looking of the era. I’m not alone in admiring the industrial design; the Museum of Modern Art in NYC has 18 B&O products in its permanent collection. B&O is no Johnny come lately to headphones, either; they’ve been making outstanding ones as far back as the late 1970s!

Thomas J. Norton Posted: Oct 21, 2013 1 comments
2D Performance
3D Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $20,000

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Extensive color control
Sparkling 3D
Minus
Black level could be better

THE VERDICT
A good overall performer and a solid first 4K effort from LG.

It’s rabbit season at the Sound & Vision ranch. The bunnies are reproducing at a torrid rate, and you can barely take aim at one before another dozen pop up.

We’re not talking cottontails here, but rather HDTVs. Yes, it’s that time of year again, when the new sets arrive en masse in anticipation of the upcoming end-of-year holiday season. The hot tickets this year are 4K (more precisely, 3840 x 2160) or, as it has been dubbed by the industry, Ultra HD, and OLED. On the 4K front, two new LG sets, at 55 and 65 inches, recently hopped into view to fill out a 4K lineup that began with the big 84LM9600—the latter our subject here.

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Ken C. Pohlmann Posted: Oct 21, 2013 6 comments
Their future seemed so very bright. The SACD format, with a bit rate four times that of CD, was designed to lead the CD to new heights. DVD-Audio, sibling of the wildly successful DVD-Video format, offered audiophile fantasy surround at 96 kilohertz/24 bit. Hard on the heels of Avatar, 3DTV promised to change TV viewing forever.
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Barb Gonzalez Posted: Oct 17, 2013 0 comments
Rumor has it that Google is about to change Google TV's name to "Android TV." What do we know for sure?
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Lauren Dragan Posted: Oct 17, 2013 0 comments
Let me start by saying, I know headphones. I have reviewed a lot, I own a lot, and my ears have endured a lot. Generally speaking, function comes before form in my recommendations. Do they sound good? Are they comfortable? How much do they cost?

Only after these questions are positively answered do I then I allow myself to get excited over how pretty they are. Rarely am I able to reach that glorious final stage. To be frank: most tech that focuses on form ends up lacking in function (I’m looking at you, Beats). But every once in a while, my inner geek gets her day, and today it’s thanks to the British company RHA’s 750i. Now, knowing the substance is there, just look at them. Sigh...Sexy, no?

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Al Griffin Posted: Oct 17, 2013 12 comments
Got a tech question for Sound & Vision? Email us at AskSandV@gmail.com.

Q I have a question about streaming audio from my PC to an A/V system located in another room. I want to be able to stream my vast collection of FLAC audio files along with Internet radio to an Integra DTR 5.9 A/V receiver. Running an Ethernet cable wouldn’t be my first choice; I have a strong Wi-Fi signal throughout the entire house and would like to use that instead for streaming. I've looked at the Sonos and Nuvo systems and the WD TV Live box. Each of these options seems to have good and bad points. But I’ve also thought about buying an inexpensive laptop and connecting it to my A/V system with a portable USB DAC. Can you recommend a solution? —John Hanlon / Encinitas, CA

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