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Mike Mettler Posted: Mar 22, 2011 0 comments

Good is good. It's a simple adage, but one that's especially true when it comes to music. Genre and predetermined preferences should be secondary if you're truly interested in having your ears entertained, challenged, and enriched.

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Mike Mettler Posted: Feb 28, 2011 0 comments

Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross won the Oscar for Best Original Score for The Social Network, and it's a modern and adventurous film score if ever I've heard one. It's haunting, of-the-moment, and immersive - and, best of all for us S+V types, it's available in surround sound. Go here to get yours.

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Brent Butterworth Posted: Feb 24, 2011 0 comments

The Internet has come alive with cheers of audiophiles and jeers of audiophobes since CNN.com reported unconfirmed rumors that download services such as iTunes and Amazon MP3 would soon begin offering music files with 24-bit resolution. Technically, this is a step up from the 16-bit resolution available in most downloads. But predictably, non-audiophiles are criticizing this move as little more than a naked marketing ploy.

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Mike Mettler Posted: Feb 17, 2011 0 comments

Some things you know right away in your rock & roll bones. When I first met Billy Corgan of Smashing Pumpkins in 1991, we bonded over the contents of a suitcase he carried with him wherever he went: an ever-growing mountain of live Jimi Hendrix cassettes (some authorized, some not). As the Pumpkins’ trippily punishing debut album, Gish, had just begun melting the ears of the alt-rock cognoscenti, Corgan was already cocksure of where he was going in the world.

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Brent Butterworth Posted: Feb 09, 2011 0 comments

Do you trust your ears? I don’t. By that I mean I don’t trust my ears. Frankly, though, I don’t trust anybody’s. I’ve heard laymen enthuse about systems that had little more to offer than a few notes of booming bass. I’ve heard audio veterans trash impeccably engineered speakers — and praise speakers that showed glaring technical flaws.

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Daniel Kumin Posted: Feb 08, 2011 0 comments

Where do you start when converting a music collection to data files for home (and portable) playback? In the January 2011 issue, we defined key terms and explored the pros and cons of both lossy (data-compressed) and lossless (uncompressed) music-file formats. Now we'll put that knowledge to use. With space at a premium in these columns, instead of debating all the options I'll just tell you what I do and why, and hope that you can work out your best strategy from there.

Formal Fit

Mike Mettler Posted: Jan 20, 2011 0 comments

So I've been basking in the sounds of Cake's new chart-topping album Showroom of Compassion (Upbeat Records; cakemusic.com), and have to say that I'm really loving it.
Oh good. That would be horrible if it was a nightmare for you. [chuckles]

And it's a great album to listen to on vinyl. The bass lines on "Got to Move" and "What's Now Is Now" have real impact.

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Posted: Jan 11, 2011 0 comments

CES 2011 is a wrap, but the new products will live on - at least until they're made obsolete by new stuff at next year's show. Here's a hand collection of all the news you need from the floor and beyond.

CES 2011: The Wild World of the High-End Audio Rooms

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Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Dec 30, 2010 0 comments

Color is one of the most important aspects of a TV’s performance, right up there with contrast ratio, black level, and video processing.

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Brent Butterworth Posted: Dec 29, 2010 0 comments

While wandering the aisles of the recent Audio Engineering Society show in San Francisco, I found a great little measurement rig for the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch that deserved inclusion in my recent article on DIY audio measurement in the January 2011 issue of S+V [on stands now]. Unfortunately, the article had already gone to press, so I thought I'd report on the system here.

Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Dec 20, 2010 0 comments

Most 3D TVs have some sort of faux-3D mode that can add a certain amount of depth to a 3D image. For that real 3D, though, you need original 3D content. There's a fair amount out there, but frustratingly, not all of it is available to everyone.

With this guide, we here at S+V will help you navigate the murky waters of the current state of 3D content.


Mike Mettler Posted: Dec 07, 2010 0 comments

And in an instant, lo, a hole in the sky appeared, and then it hit me like (bang bang) Maxwell's Silver Hammer when "Get Back," the Beatles? 1969 classic song to roller-coast by, cued up on my iPod during one morning's commute. As Paul McCartney's lead vocal embraced the song's galloping melody line, a great revelation emerged: I can sing Black Sabbath?s "Paranoid" to the same tune! Black Sabbath, the dark lords of melody . . . revealed!

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Brent Butterworth Posted: Nov 29, 2010 0 comments

Back in the days when a decent TV cost $4,000, I never hesitated to recommend spending $300 or so on professional calibration. But now you can get a pretty good set for less than $1,000. Far be it from me to tell you what your priorities should be, but to me, spending three bills to have a $900 TV calibrated seems as silly installing a $10,000 Viking range a 30,000 mobile home. Does this harsh nancial reality leave TV bargain hunters at the mercy of the factory calibration?

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HT Staff Posted: Nov 23, 2010 0 comments
Give a Little Bit

Looking for the perfect gift for the techie in your life? Home Theater’s writers and editors are here to help spread the holiday season cheer.

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Gary Dell'Abate Posted: Nov 23, 2010 0 comments

The iPhone has clearly infiltrated our culture. Its owners are rabidly loyal, and they’ll tell you that every other phone is inferior to theirs. Alas, the many people out there still devoted to BlackBerry can only look longingly at the iPhone, wishing for some of those cool features that Apple has become famous for.