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Peter Pachal Posted: Nov 07, 2006 0 comments

LIGHT TOUCH Ever get that feeling that you're about to live out a horror movie when you come home at night to a dark house? Lutron's AuroRA kit puts those fears to rest. When you pull up in your car, just tap the portable wireless controller to immediately turn on up to five lights in your house.

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Peter Pachal Posted: Apr 03, 2006 0 comments

Seems like a new portable video player drops from the sky every few minutes these days, but RCA's latest video Lyra has something worth catching: DirecTV2Go, which later this year will let you offload recorded programs from DirecTV PVRs to watch on the Lyra's 3.625-inch screen or any TV you hook it up to.

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Posted: Apr 03, 2006 0 comments

Podcasts, those audio recordings of your innermost thoughts that you share with every Internet-connected person on the planet, are easily done with a hodgepodge of hardware and software. But they're most easily done with M-Audio's Podcast Factory ($180), which has everything you need to record and edit your podcasts and post them as MP3 files on podcasting sites.

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Peter Pachal Posted: Jan 05, 2007 0 comments

CLASS SYSTEM With budget receivers packing state-of-the-art features such as 7.1-channel sound and HDMI switching, any manufacturer that has the stones to charge two grand for one had better include some really shiny bells and whistles.

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Peter Pachal Posted: Sep 04, 2006 0 comments

DLP PROGRESS If HDTV is your religion, your savior has arrived: The Marantz VP-11S1 is the first DLP front projector with 1080p resolution. Unlike previous 1080p DLP TVs, which stacked their pixel counts using a technique similar to interlacing called "wobulation," the VP-11S1 packs a state-of-the-art DLP chip that renders discrete 1,920 x 1,080-pixel images.

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Peter Pachal Posted: Feb 06, 2007 0 comments

GET YOUR TWEAK ON A first-ever for the high-end company, McIntosh's VP1000 video processor (top) has the goods to deliver two separate 1080p signals via HDMI. Control freaks will delight at the multitude of adjustments: Each input can store different picture settings for both output zones.

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Jamie Sorcher Posted: Feb 05, 2007 0 comments

May the flash be with you! For daily data transport, Star Wars fanatics can now stay on target with USB flash drives that are both practical and whimsical. Mimoco's Star Wars mimobots include a storm trooper as well as Darth Vader, Chewbacca, and R2-D2 & all designed to the exacting standards of Lucas Licensing.

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Peter Pachal Posted: Dec 03, 2006 0 comments

MORE IS LESS Just a couple of years back, high-def front projectors priced less than 3 grand were seen about as often as a giant squid. Today, Mitsubishi's HD1000U is tagged at less than half that, and its DLP light engine can blast 720p-format HD images onto your wall larger than any TV screen.

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Peter Pachal Posted: Jan 05, 2007 0 comments

KALEID-O-SET In the modern TV world of huge screens and off-the-scale resolution, color matters more than ever. The palette in Mitsubishi's 57-inch 1080p set is run by a 6-Primary Color System, which creates the "subtractive" colors (cyan, magenta, and yellow) directly instead of mixing red, green, and blue.

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Peter Pachal Posted: Jul 06, 2006 0 comments

COLOR ME RAD Six primary colors? That can't be right, yet Mitsubishi insists on calling its state-of-the-art TV color control the 6-Primary Color System, since it creates yellow, cyan, and magenta directly, rather than by mixing red, green, and blue. The upshot: a wider range of richer, more vibrant colors.

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Peter Pachal Posted: May 04, 2006 0 comments

Everybody wants a flat LCD or plasma TV to hang on the wall, but punching holes for cabling can be a pain. Mizzico has its "Superb Wiring Solution" for this quandary: the WS-18, an 18-inch-long wiring channel ($89) that attaches to the wall between your TV and component rack (assuming it's right underneath), hiding any unsightly cables.

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Peter Pachal Posted: May 04, 2006 0 comments

COOL FACTOR While other music portables can claim greater capacity, compactness, or coolness, this digital demon boasts the longest battery life of any MP3 player ever - 150 hours per charge, folks. Next time you decide to skip town for a week, don't even bother bringing the charger with you.

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Peter Pachal Posted: May 04, 2006 0 comments

If you think Netflix is a convenient way to watch the movies you want, take a look at MovieBeam. After buying one of its shiny silver boxes ($228 after rebate), you can stream flicks right into your home for $2 to $5 a pop, and there are even high-def titles available.

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Peter Pachal Posted: May 04, 2006 0 comments

From a $200 bookshelf model to a 3.5-foot-tall tower ($1,800 a pair), NHT's new Classic speakers have gloss-black finishes that stand out and curves in all the right places. But in redesigning its Super Audio speaker line, the company went for more than just good looks by tailoring the speakers' sound for home theaters.

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Peter Pachal Posted: Sep 04, 2006 0 comments

KEEP IT TOGETHER Imagine having an iPod and a satellite radio in every room. The IntelliControl ICS system makes it happen with just one iPod and one radio tuner by distributing their feeds via the GXR2 receiver, which takes audio from up to six sources and streams it to six zones. Touchscreens in each zone display artist, title, and track information.

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