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Posted: Mar 08, 2004 0 comments

<I>Passion</I> piracy? Hollywood duplication facility Lightning Media is on the receiving end of a lawsuit by Mel Gibson's Icon Distribution Inc., alleging copyright violations over illegal copies made of <I>The Passion of the Christ</I>, Gibson's controversial new film now in theatrical release. <I>Passion</I> pulled in over $125 million in ticket sales in its first week.

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Posted: Mar 08, 2004 0 comments

Thomas J. Norton listens to the <A HREF="/amplifiers/104theta">Theta Dreadnaught II multichannel amplifier</A>, the latest in a growing family from a company known for its digital converters, transports and surround processors. TJN determines if the amp, which is configurable from two to five channels, lives up to Theta's admirable audiophile reputation.

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Thomas J. Norton Posted: Mar 07, 2004 0 comments

<I>Arnold Schwarzenegger, Nick Stahl, Claire Danes, Kristanna Loken. Directed by Jonathan Mostow. Aspect ratio: 2.35:1 (anamorphic). Dolby Digital 5.1 (English, French). Two discs. 109 minutes. 2003. Warner Home Video 27723. R. $29.95.</I>

Thomas J. Norton Posted: Mar 07, 2004 0 comments

The Dreadnaught (reviewed in our Oct-ober 2000 issue) was the first power amplifier from Theta Digital, a company previously known for its D/A converters, CD and DVD transports, and surround processors. But it wasn't to be the last. The Dreadnaught II is now a member of a growing family of Theta amplifiers&mdash;the premier multichannel design in a line that also includes high-end monoblocks.

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Matt Lake Posted: Mar 02, 2004 0 comments

Photo by Tony Cordoza The trouble with storing a massive music library on your computer is obvious: it's on your computer! To hear those MP3 or WMA (Windows Media Audio) files on the killer sound system in your living room, you need to jump through hoops.

Daniel Kumin Posted: Mar 02, 2004 0 comments

Photos by Tony Cordoza The model numbers for Harman Kardon's latest line of A/V receivers recall those the company used for receivers it introduced some 20 years ago, and I'm betting that's no accident. Back then, HK scored a solid hit with a compact, simple, affordable stereo receiver called the 330C that was modestly powered but provided consistently good sound.

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Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Mar 01, 2004 0 comments
Pioneer's latest isn't just a plasma, it's an HDTV.

For a display to be called an HDTV, it has to have a built-in ATSC tuner. Many of the RPTVs in last month's Face Off were so equipped, but Pioneer's Elite PRO-1110HD is the first plasma we've reviewed that has one. It seems so simple, especially when you consider that this plasma (like others) has an external box for all of its inputs. How hard could it be to stick a tuner in there? Shoehorns are cheap. In fact, Pioneer has included ATSC tuners in all four of their new plasma sets.

Benjamin Dover Posted: Mar 01, 2004 0 comments
You can have it all (almost).

If you're like me, you're sick and tired of format wars. When will these companies learn that having to choose between formats only leads to consumer frustration and, sometimes, outright rebellion? Perhaps this is why DVD-Audio and SACD have not taken off like their proponents might have wished. And perhaps this is why several companies have introduced universal players that will play both formats in addition to DVD-Video and good ol' CD.

Steve Guttenberg Posted: Mar 01, 2004 0 comments
Little speakers with big aspirations.

It must be something of a conundrum for speaker designers: Today's buyers are demanding more and more from smaller and smaller speakers. The designers' incredible shrinking speakers work their mojo with ever-more-innovative cabinet designs, and their high-tech drivers push the performance envelope. At least that's what they tell me. No doubt some of their more-extreme claims are jive techno babble, but that's OK—the sonic truth will inevitably be laid bare when the pedal hits the metal on the Fast and the Furious DVD. The pint-size speakers better deliver the goods. . .or else.

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