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POPULAR ON S&V
LATEST ADDITIONS

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Barb Gonzalez Posted: Jul 25, 2014 Published: Jul 23, 2014 0 comments
The Qplay app and adapter will cease to function after July 25, 2014. Was Qplay a bad idea?
Filed under
Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Jul 25, 2014 1 comments
If you haven’t heard about Star Citizen, you must have been living under a rock. Or don’t care about video games. Or don’t care about video games and have been living under a rock. Enjoy your rock cave.

From Chris Roberts, the brilliant game designer and lets-not-mention-that-directorial-debut, Star Citizen is what every fan of Privateer, Wing Commander, Space Rogue, and every other space sim have always wanted.

At least, that’s the promise.

Now, I and other backers (damn right I have them my dollars), have had a chance to try out an early alpha snipped of the game: space combat.

I have thoughts.

Filed under
SV Staff Posted: Jul 25, 2014 0 comments
With Dolby Atmos looming on the horizon we asked how Sound & Vision readers do surround and learned that nine out of 10 of those who responded have either a 5.1/5.2 (59%) or 7.1/7.2 (30%) setup. The complete breakdown is below.
Filed under
Mark Fleischmann Posted: Jul 25, 2014 Published: Jul 24, 2014 0 comments
Audio Performance
Video Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
Price $300

At A Glance
Plus
Five amp channels
Virtual Cinema Front
Darkish tonal balance
Minus
Bargain-basement speaker terminals
No wireless or network audio features

The Verdict
The Yamaha RX-V377 is an accessibly priced entry-level receiver with most of the essential features and mercifully dark-toned voicing.

If you think surround sound is just for the well-to-do, think again. The Top Picks page on this site is loaded with compact 5.1-channel speaker systems, starting at $520 for a setup based on the Pioneer SP-BS522 monitors, designed by loudspeaker guru Andrew Jones. Cheap Blu-ray players abound, these days. All you’d need to do is add another $300 for something like the Yamaha RX-V377 receiver, reviewed here, and your starter system weighs in at under a grand (and those are list prices).

Filed under
SV Staff Posted: Jul 24, 2014 0 comments
DTS today announced that the McIntosh, Sonus Faber, and Wadia brands owned by Fine Sounds Group will introduce products featuring its Play-Fi wireless audio standard later this year.
Filed under
Al Griffin Posted: Jul 24, 2014 1 comments
Got a tech question for Sound & Vision? Email us at AskSandV@gmail.com

Q I need to replace an old receiver that has a phono input for my turntable. Do I need to get another receiver with a phono input, or can I just use the receiver’s Tape or Aux inputs instead?—David L. Waller 

Filed under
Mike Mettler Posted: Jul 23, 2014 0 comments
“Our music has stood the test of time,” observes Toto guitarist/vocalist Steve Lukather. “We’ve had this long ride, and now it’s starting all over again.” Luke, as he’s known to his friends, has an excellent point. Toto, whose members past and present honed their impressive chops as studio musicians, have long been the favorites of audiophiles the world over, best evidenced by the ongoing impact of Toto IV (1982) and tracks like the ebb-and-flow magical rush of “Rosanna” and the percussive continental vibes that fuel “Africa.” (And Toto IV is all the more aurally satisfying thanks to its fully encompassing 5.1 mix, done by Elliot Scheiner on SACD in 2002.)

The band’s international impact has never been greater, as evidenced by the success of Live in Poland (Eagle Vision). Poland, which was shot at the Atlas Arena in Lodz, Poland while the band was on the road overseas for its 35th Anniversary Tour in 2013, bulleted right to the top of the DVD charts this past Spring (though it is, of course, best experienced on Blu-ray). Poland showcases how Toto is as formidable a collective onstage as it is in the studio. Toto will be hitting the road to co-headline a U.S. tour with Michael McDonald starting August 2. Here, Lukather, 56, and I talk about Poland's success, his ongoing passion for sound quality, and the reasons for the band’s perpetual cultural impact. From where I sit, Toto won’t be passing the reins anytime soon.

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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jul 23, 2014 0 comments
Locks have been around ever since people starting accumulating stuff that they didn’t want other people to get their hands on. Over the millennia, various types of locks have been used to safeguard all kinds of things: stones (a.k.a. jewels), money, jars of Nutella, castle dungeons, the secret formula for the Krabby Patty, automobiles, and houses, just to name a few. Supposedly, there are 4,000-year-old clay tablets (probably locked away in a museum somewhere) from the Babylonian Empire that show an early form of keys on them. In ancient Greece, keys were large enough that they were carried on a person’s shoulder. (Although Leonidas might have said, “This is Sparta!”; he most certainly never said, “Where did I put my keys?”) Wealthy Romans didn’t have to worry about losing their keys, either, because they often wore their keys on their fingers as, well, key rings.

Today, of course, we have lots of ways of locking up things without resorting to the old-fashioned lock-and-key routine. When it comes to smart home technology, motorized, electronic door locks aren’t exactly the newest home automation device...

Filed under
SV Staff Posted: Jul 23, 2014 0 comments
The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) has announced expanded guidelines for Ultra High-Definition (UHD or Ultra HD) TVs, monitors, and projectors. Devised and approved by CEA’s Video Division Board, “Ultra High-Definition Display Characteristics V2” are voluntary and build on the Ultra HD definition the association announced in October 2012.

The guidelines, which take effect in September, address picture quality and interoperability and are designed to provide clarity for consumers and retailers. A TV, monitor, or projector may be referred to as “Ultra High-Definition” if it meets the following minimum performance attributes:

Filed under
Thomas J. Norton Posted: Jul 23, 2014 Published: Jul 22, 2014 0 comments

Monitor Audio Silver 10 Speaker System
Performance
Build Quality
Value
Monitor Audio W-12 Subwoofer
Performance
Build Quality
Value
PRICE $5,925 (Silver 10, $2,500 pr; Silver Centre, $725; Silver 2, $1,050 pr; Silver W-12, $1,650)

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Crisp, open sound
Superb imaging
First-rate fit and finish
Minus
Two-way center channel
Limited subwoofer output

THE VERDICT
The center speaker suffers the usual off-axis quirks of a two-way design, and the small sub came up short for the deepest movie bass, but Monitor’s Silver series is a triumph, a treat to hear, and well worth seeking out for a serious audition.

Monitor Audio offers an exceptionally wide range of speakers, from the decidedly expensive (but not nosebleed high-end) to the modestly priced. In 2010, I reviewed the company’s relatively affordable Silver RX system. That line has now been completely redesigned, losing its RX moniker and morphing into the Silver series. Like the RXs before them, the Silvers were designed at Monitor’s U.K. headquarters and are built in a company-owned plant in China. For this review, we’ve selected the largest of the floorstanders, the Silver 10, along with the Silver Centre, the Silver W-12 subwoofer, and, instead of the Silver FX dedicated surround speakers, a pair of Silver 2s to serve the surround channels.

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