LATEST ADDITIONS

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Barb Gonzalez Posted: Dec 03, 2014 2 comments
The Rocki WiFi adapter connects to any speaker or sound system that has a line-in or RCA connection. Find out if this funny-looking little device is the next gadget you'll need to add to your streaming arsenal.
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Mark Fleischmann Posted: Dec 03, 2014 2 comments

Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $800 (updated 12/10/14)

AT A GLANCE
Plus
HDMI 2.0 and lossless surround decoding
7.1 channels of amplification
Fairly deep response
Upward-angled rubber feet
Minus
No HDCP 2.2 DRM

THE VERDICT
The Sony HT-ST5 provides up-to-date HDMI 2.0 connectivity along with great-for-a-bar sound, including excellent subwoofer integration.

OK, I admit it. When I signed up for audio-critic duty in the late 1980s, about a decade into my tech-journalism career, I envisioned a glamorous world of gleaming waxed wood-veneered speakers, precocious multitalented receivers, and dressed-to-kill home theaters designed by Theo Kalomirakis. Soundbars weren’t even on the horizon then. Even so, step by step, I have committed myself to the conceptual principles underlying soundbars: audio-for-video, compactness, minimal footprint, maybe a little surround magic, and user-friendliness, that last item being glaringly absent from AV receivers.

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Ken C. Pohlmann Posted: Dec 02, 2014 2 comments
It is the patriotic duty of every American man, woman, and child to go shopping for a TV on Black Friday. After spending most of Thursday up-armoring me and my vehicle, I went to a Best Buy on Friday morning. Two observations: First, I lived to tell about it. Second, it takes about 20 minutes for the ambulance to drive from the Best Buy to the nearest ER.

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Bob Ankosko Posted: Dec 02, 2014 0 comments
Americans love technology. So much so that four out of ten U.S. shoppers bought or planned to buy electronics goodies over the Thanksgiving shopping weekend, according to the Consumer Electronics Association. How about you? Did you hunker down on the sofa and scour the Web for the craziest deals or brave the malls? Either way, take a moment to select your top AV gift pick for the 2014 holiday season. And if your perfect gift isn’t on our list, post a comment to enlighten us. Happy shopping!
What’s Your Top AV Gift Pick for 2014?
AV receiver
14% (119 votes)
Blu-ray box set
4% (34 votes)
4K/Ultra HDTV
22% (193 votes)
Game console
7% (62 votes)
HDTV (1080p LCD/LED)
4% (38 votes)
Headphones
9% (80 votes)
Home theater speaker system
7% (56 votes)
Music box set
1% (7 votes)
OLED TV
15% (130 votes)
Portable wireless/Bluetooth speaker
3% (24 votes)
Soundbar
2% (20 votes)
Streaming media player (Roku, etc.)
5% (43 votes)
Turntable
6% (53 votes)
Total votes: 859
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Chris Chiarella Posted: Dec 01, 2014 0 comments
I don’t always watch my favorite movies and television series. But when I do, I prefer to watch them on Blu-ray. Thankfully, the studios have provided home theater enthusiasts—people who shop for them—with a bounty of exciting new sets, likely to elicit that elusive “Ooo…” as the ribbons and bows tumble to the floor. From film canons to entire classic TV series to the sort of inspired little tchotchkes that can be proudly displayed, these selections go beyond the ordinary, as gifts that will be enjoyed well beyond the holidays.
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Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Nov 29, 2014 0 comments
A few weeks ago I wrote about the experience of playing Alien: Isolation on the Oculus Rift. It is, without a doubt, incredible.

However, it is a bit of a hassle, and as awesome as the Rift is, it’s still pre-production and lacks the sort of seamlessness I hope to find in the final product.

So I switched over and started playing Alien on my regular gaming rig: A 102-inch screen and 5.1 surround system. So this is about the game. Because it’s worth talking about.

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Barb Gonzalez Posted: Nov 27, 2014 0 comments
A new crop of streaming video apps have been added to the Chromecast including streaming video apps for kids and games. Family game night will never be the same.
Bob Ankosko Posted: Nov 26, 2014 Published: Nov 25, 2014 4 comments
Wondering if you should step up and buy a new TV this holiday season? Take our 30 second quiz...
Lauren Dragan Posted: Nov 26, 2014 1 comments
If you live in a small apartment or a dorm, or you’re looking for a sound system for your office, small stereo bookshelf speakers are usually the way to go. They take up less space than traditional sound systems, are simple to set up, and generally offer better sound quality than the speakers attached to your computer, small TV, or portable device. But as we’ve all experienced, getting connected to analog speakers can be a drag. Running cables under carpets or through walls in a rental isn’t always a possibility, and nobody likes having wires pinned along the molding and ceiling. If these problems sound familiar to you, then a wireless stereo speaker may be just what you’ve been looking for.
Lauren Dragan Posted: Nov 26, 2014 0 comments
Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Build Quality
Value
PRICE $200

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Louder than smaller
portable speakers
Easy to set up
Good battery life
Minus
Lacks high-frequency detail
Lacks bass intensity

THE VERDICT
The Go is perfect for someone who wants better and louder sound than the average wireless portable, or who wants to amplify their music device and doesn’t want to commit to their speaker staying put in one room.

How It Connects: Bluetooth, AptX, NFC, ⅛” analog.

The Cambridge Audio Go is lightweight and small enough to carry with you (about 2.5 pounds) but big enough to fill a midsize room with sound. Equipped with two 0.75-inch titanium dome tweeters, two 2-inch woofers, and a rear bass radiator, it’s a step up from the tiny Bluetooth portables that most of us are familiar with. Perfect for kids’ bedrooms, dorm rooms, or other small spaces, the Go sounds better (and louder!) than the speakers on your laptop but is easy to cart to another room.

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