Al Griffin Posted: Apr 10, 2015 0 comments

2D Performance
3D Performance
PRICE $10,000

Accurate color
Ample brightness
Smooth, detailed picture
Minimal fan noise
No iris control
Doesn’t include 3D glasses

Sony’s lowest-priced 4K projector to date is packed with features and delivers a bright, beautiful picture.

When I hear someone question the value of 4K, the first thought that comes to my mind is: projection. Unless your nose is pressed up to the screen, a 4K image viewed on 50-inch flat-panel TV won’t look much different from regular old 1080p. A main advantage to 4K is that you can scale your display up to a massive size without having to worry about seeing the individual pixels that form a picture. And when you’re thinking about scaling a video display up to a massive size, nothing gives you a better return on investment than projection.

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Bob Ankosko Posted: Apr 10, 2015 4 comments
A Visit to Best Buy’s Magnolia Design Center

Audio snobs might cringe at the idea of visiting a Best Buy but did you know that the chain’s Magnolia Design Centers sell McIntosh electronics and speakers from B&W, MartinLogan, and Sonus Faber?

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Bob Ankosko Posted: Apr 10, 2015 4 comments
It's been about 10 months since Dolby announced a home version of its next generation Atmos surround-sound format and a good number of products have since found their way to market. Have you heard an Atmos demo or, even better, upgraded your home theater setup to Atmos?
Have You Heard Dolby Atmos Yet?
Yes, I’ve heard Atmos in action and loved it.
12% (187 votes)
Yes, I’ve heard Atmos in action and was not all that impressed.
7% (110 votes)
Yes, I’ve heard Atmos in action and have upgraded my home theater setup.
4% (56 votes)
No, I have not heard Atmos yet but hope to soon.
43% (673 votes)
No, I have not heard Atmos and plan to stick with a traditional surround-sound setup.
34% (532 votes)
Total votes: 1558
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Mark Fleischmann Posted: Apr 10, 2015 6 comments
Freak that I am, I still pay for most of the music I listen to. Not that I didn't have a fling with Napster and its successors—but I've removed torrenting software from my PCs and no longer seek out illegal downloads. Nowadays, if I want to check out new-to-me music without investing, I try the public library, YouTube, borrow from a friend, or—being a journalist has its privileges—ask for a review sample of the disc or download. But I also explore the vast realm of classical music via $2 LPs and pay full price for CDs and LPs by greying artists I've supported for decades. The one thing I refuse to do now is settle for a lousy stolen MP3. I'm done with that. If you're not, here are a few things to think about. Please don't get the impression that I'm acting all high and mighty about illegal downloading. What I'm arguing is that it's in your best interest to give it up. Here's why.

Rob Sabin Posted: Apr 09, 2015 2 comments
‘Tis that time of the year when all the big TV makers start shipping their new lines to retail, which means members of the press get to see them up close for what amounts to the second time, the first being January’s CES. No surprise that the star of the show at LG Electronic’s New York press conference this week was the 65EG9600, the company’s new 65-inch Ultra HD-resolution OLED.

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Al Griffin Posted: Apr 09, 2015 1 comments
Got a tech question for Sound & Vision? Email us at

Q I read lots about digital to analog audio converters (DACs), mostly because of high-res computer audio. Here’s my question: Why do some DACs have a digital output? If the purpose of a DAC is to convert a digital audio signal to analog, why would you want it to output the signal in digital format as well? —Jacques Simard

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Mike Mettler Posted: Apr 09, 2015 0 comments
Chances are you know the name Michael Des Barres, but just exactly how most likely depends on your entry point. If you’ve read I’m With the Band: Confessions of a Groupie, then you know him as the ex-husband of Miss Pamela, Pamela Des Barres. If you’re a devout fan of ’70s rock, then you know him as the frontman of cult-fave bands Silverhead and Detective. If you’re a TV aficionado, you know him as Murdoc from MacGyver — and maybe even as Dog, the nattily dressed lead singer of fictional punk band Scum of the Earth from an all-time classic October 1978 episode of WRKP in Cincinnati. And if you’re a dedicated listener of Little Steven’s Underground Garage, Channel 21 on SiriusXM satellite radio, then you’re probably quite riveted to the insights, encyclopedic rock & roll knowledge, and cheeky humor he provides between the tracks that spin during his always exhilarating weekday shift. While the man’s far-reaching C.V. is indeed impressive, Des Barres is a musician first and foremost, and all of his killer instincts have converged on The Key to the Universe (FOD Records), his strongest and most consistent record, well, ever. Notes Des Barres, “People go insane for these new songs. It’s so astounding to me, after having not really done anything on this scale in 25 years, that people are responding to them. I think I sound better on this record than I’ve ever sounded.” Recently, I rang up Des Barres, 67, to discuss the sonic philosophy behind The Key, how to avoid including any “twiddly bits,” and finding one’s own voice as an artist. MDB is a true rock & roll survivor who knows how best to overcome adversity and get it on.
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Bob Ankosko Posted: Apr 09, 2015 3 comments
Nine months after Dolby Atmos made its home debut at a New York trade show, DTS today officially introduced DTS:X, an “object-based, multi-dimensional audio technology” for commercial cinema and home theater.
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Chris Chiarella Posted: Apr 08, 2015 0 comments
Exploring the adventures of a lesser-known team from the Marvel Universe, Guardians of the Galaxy was something of a surprise hit. The plot is well worn, almost clichéd, as a group of disparate beings learn to work together, and we can spot the few twists light-years away. Perhaps the filmmakers are acknowledging all that has come before but have chosen to enliven this tale by infusing a vast quantity of smart-ass humor. And that decision pays off remarkably well, yielding one of the most entertaining space operas since Star Wars.
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Steve Guttenberg Posted: Apr 08, 2015 0 comments

PRICE $180

Bright and clear sound
All-new 9.2mm drivers
Bowers & Wilkins design flair
The C5 S2’s cable may rub against your ears

Bowers & Wilkins’ engineers revised and tweaked C5 Series 2 in-ear headphone sounds better than ever.

I doubt the original Bowers & Wilkins C5 that debuted in 2011 was ever confused for any other headphone. I loved its sharply angled, cylindrical aluminum earpieces and looped cables: They marked the C5 as a true original. The new C5 Series 2 doesn’t look much different. The biggest change is one you can’t see: The 9.2mm drivers are all new. The headphones’ silicone ear tips now provide a snugger fit, and the old silver/gray cable has been replaced with a black one. The new inline mic/remote has a better tactile feel. You can take calls on Androids and iPhones, but the remote only works with iPhones. Bowers & Wilkins’ headphone carry cases are classier than most, and the suede-like one that comes with the C5 S2 looks sharp.


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