LATEST ADDITIONS

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Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Apr 18, 2015 0 comments
I’m a big fan of Death Cab. I’ve got all their albums, yadda yadda, and several of them are among my favorites of all time (Plans is masterful). So you’d think I’d have been impatiently awaiting the March 31st release of their new album.

Except… I didn’t buy it until last week.

Why? I’m a terrible music reviewer, and not paying attention to new releases isn’t even top 5 why.

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David Vaughn Posted: Apr 17, 2015 3 comments
Picture
Sound
Extras
Thomas is disjointed and confused as he wakes up on a rising elevator not knowing who or where he is. When he finally regains his focus, he’s surrounded by a group of teenage boys and realizes he’s not in Kansas anymore. He’s in the Glade, an enclave surrounded by giant walls that hide a maze, a mostly off-limits area that’s protected by the Grievers—cybernetic organisms that come out at night and will kill anyone who has ventured into the maze and hasn’t exited when the sun goes down.
Thomas J. Norton Posted: Apr 17, 2015 0 comments
2D Performance
3D Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $1,199

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Bright, punchy picture
Excellent color
Compact size
Minus
Mediocre blacks
High vertical offset with limited lens shift

THE VERDICT
You wouldn’t expect the type of performance this BenQ delivers for the price, but it will impress even a fussy videophile and blow away the newbie.

Flat-screen 1080p HDTVs have been dropping in price. Nonetheless, short of a blowout sale, a really big-screen set—say, 70 inches diagonal or larger, even in plain old 1080p, will probably set you back a minimum of $1,500. Compared with prices even two years ago, that’s cheap, but for most buyers it’s still significant cash.

What if you discovered that for less money you could get a picture that’s three or more times the size (by area) of that 70-inch flat-screen set? How does $1,200 sound?

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Barb Gonzalez Posted: Apr 17, 2015 Published: Apr 16, 2015 0 comments

Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $500

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Roku home screen accesses source inputs as well as streaming channels
Universal search results finds titles on most channels
Excellent value at under $500
Minus
TV picture can’t compare with high end models
No Ethernet port for wired network connection
Settings for closed captions and many other features require returning to home screen

THE VERDICT
TCL’s Roku TV may be the easiest TV to use for everyone in your family—a great second TV.

Roku is the king of streaming media players. Whether it’s the Roku 3 streaming box or an HDMI streaming dongle, no other streaming system can claim the same variety of channels or simple, intuitive graphic interface. TCL is one of several manufacturers that has integrated Roku into its TVs in some capacity, either with a Roku-friendly remote that can be mated with a Roku stick, or, in this case, a fully-integrated platform in the 48-inch model 48FS4610R ($500 list before discounting). While its picture quality can’t compare with high-end TV models, this is one TV that everyone in the house should be able use.

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Barb Gonzalez Posted: Apr 16, 2015 1 comments
New online streaming TV offerings makes it tempting to cut the cord and cancel your cable, satellite, or telecom provider. Is it time and will it save you money?
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Bob Ankosko Posted: Apr 16, 2015 2 comments
Vizio launched the M-Series lineup of UHD TVs featuring full-array LED backlighting in nine screen sizes. Prices range from $600 for a 43-inch model to $4,000 for an 80-inch screen.
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Al Griffin Posted: Apr 16, 2015 4 comments
Got a tech question for Sound & Vision? Email us at AskSandV@gmail.com

Q I recently purchased a pair of Definitive Technology BP 8060 ST tower speakers with built-in subs. They are connected to my Sony STR-DH750 receiver. What would be the correct speaker setting if I used the 8060s as my front speakers (set to Large) and continued to use my Sony sub for LFE instead of the ones built into the Def Tech towers? The rest of my system consists of two Infinity rear surrounds and a center speaker, plus two Bose speakers mounted on the front wall that I use for height speakers. —Kevin Bolin / Houston, TX

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Steve Guttenberg Posted: Apr 14, 2015 3 comments

Performance
Build Quality
Value
PRICE $1,998/pair

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Sleek tower design
Huge soundstage!
HVFR planar magnetic folded ribbon tweeter
Minus
Black is the only finish

THE VERDICT
At less than $2,000 per pair, the Triton continues the GoldenEar value tradition with superb sonics at an attainable price.

I’ve known quite a few speaker designers and owners of high-end companies, but GoldenEar Technology’s CEO and co-founder Sandy Gross is the only one who’s an avid art collector. He paints a little, too, but mostly expresses his creative side through the sound of his loudspeakers. Gross has developed a keen ear as a decades-long veteran in the speaker business, co-founding Polk Audio and later Definitive Technology. In 2010, he launched GoldenEar Technology at the CEDIA show in Atlanta, Georgia.

Bob Ankosko Posted: Apr 14, 2015 3 comments
Samsung S9W Ultra HDTV

I tried to imagine the S9W at home but quickly realized my rustic family room is no match for its art-gallery vibe. Although I have to admit, when I first laid eyes on its magnificent 82-inch Ultra HD screen with its cinematic 21:9 aspect ratio, I wondered why it was perched, just shy of teetering, on a compact refrigerator. Refreshments at hand, perhaps? No, that wasn’t it. (Not even close, knucklehead.)

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Bob Ankosko Posted: Apr 14, 2015 0 comments
LG today introduced the Music Flow family of “smart hi-fi” speakers and soundbars, said to be among the first to support Google Cast Wi-Fi streaming from Android and iOS devices.

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