TECH2

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Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Jul 28, 2011 0 comments

I've got LG's new 50PZ950 plasma in my lab for an upcoming review in the magazine. The set had some cool features I didn't have space to mention, so I figured I could talk about them here instead.

The short version? It has some of the most extensive calibration settings I've ever seen on a TV.

And yet, they're not enough.

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Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Jul 06, 2011 0 comments

I am not a luddite. In fact, barring cybernetic augmentations (bring 'em on), I'd say I'm about as far from a luddite as one could be. I love technology. Thanks to my job, I'm often the first of my circle to have the latest gadget. I've got tons of Apple iStuff, a beloved Android phone, an oversized HDTV, 18MP DSLR, and yadda yadda.

Yet, I still buy CDs.

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Lauren Dragan Posted: Mar 20, 2015 4 comments
To enjoy their gear, high end audio enthusiasts have generally been trapped at home. From speakers, to receivers and amplifiers, none of the means of reproducing quality sound were exactly portable. Even the enthusiast-level headphones that have arrived on the scene over the last few years are large, unwieldy, unfashionable, and require at minimum a decent headphone amp to function. (See: most Audeze, Oppo HA-1, HiFi Man, etc.)

In addition, most planar magnetic headphones are open-backed, which means listening in less-than-quiet or public situations can be a challenge. Well, my fellow audio recluses, the PM-3 by Oppo aims to change all that.

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Brent Butterworth Posted: Nov 14, 2011 0 comments

Hanging out at the recent Rocky Mountain Audio Fest, I listened in on a conversation that S+V writer Mike Trei was having with an audio manufacturer who's getting into the headphone biz.

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Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Nov 08, 2013 0 comments
Above the streets of Hollywood, at the top of the swanky W Hotel, Panasonic held a party to show off their upcoming 4K tablet.

That’s right, a tablet with 4K resolution.

What I wasn’t expecting is that it’s huge. I guess it’s still technically a tablet with a 20-inch 15:10 screen, but wow.

They also had their new 4K LCD. Fellow S&Ver Lauren Dragan and I headed to Hollywood and Vine to check it out (that’s where the hotel is, not just some random location we wandered by).

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Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Feb 26, 2013 0 comments

I am a vocal and unrepentant projector fanatic. I think projectors represent the best value in home entertainment, and wish more people would embrace the awesome as I have (for over 10 years now).

However, projectors aren’t without drawbacks, and the UHP lamps in nearly all of them are a big one. Hot, expensive, and not particularly long lasting, UHP lamp replacement is often cited as one of the biggest annoyances of projector ownership. The alternative, LED lighting, has mostly just been found in uber-high-end projectors, and inexpensive wee little projectors.

But not anymore.

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Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Sep 04, 2013 0 comments
Aimin’ to take a beatin’
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Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Oct 21, 2011 0 comments

Paradigm isn't a big company, only 250 people or so. It doesn't have the immense marketing budget to assault the airwaves like Bose, or the R&D budget to make every manner of gadget like Sony.

These are good things, because instead this Canadian company goes about making some solid products, loved by reviewers, and beloved by customers.

Invited to check out their factory just outside Toronto, I dusted off my American Flag jacket, trucker hat, "W" belt buckle, and headed north of the border.

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Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Apr 16, 2013 0 comments

I love my car. My car is old. Eleven years old this week, actually. When I bought it, in-dash cassette players were on their way out, and CD players were all but standard. Mine even had the upgraded "Audiophile" system, which had an in-dash 6-disc changer.

The stupidity of a in-dash CD changer aside, the one thing my car didn't have was any ability to add an external source. None. So imagine my annoyance, my near-decade-long annoyance at not being able to play my iPod in my car.

Well with one fell swoop, not only can I play my iPod, I can voice dial, hands free talk, stream music from my phone, navigate via GPS, and do all the other fancy things people who buy new cars can do. I got (Asteroid) Smart.

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Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Apr 19, 2013 0 comments

Things we learned in Part 1: My car is old. It only played CDs. Angle grinder use on dashboards is best left to professionals. The Parrot Asteroid Smart seems to do a lot of cool stuff.

And that’s the thing, right? It seems to do a lot of cool stuff, but there was no way of knowing how cool, or not, until it was installed (quite expertly by Mobile Fantasy).

This is called “a gamble.”

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Lauren Dragan Posted: Nov 21, 2014 0 comments
I am not a luddite. I love buttons that make things happen. I love touch screens, I love customization, I love the newest thing. So it would only seem natural that I would love the newest addition to the Parrot family, the Zik 2.0 headphones. They are a tinkerer’s headphone. Touchpad earcups, customizable sound, active noise cancellation, Bluetooth… if there’s a headphone feature available, the Zik 2.0 have it. And yet, despite all of these wonderful features, I can’t recommend them. And it breaks my heart.
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Lauren Dragan Posted: Feb 06, 2015 0 comments
When I left for college, my parents gave me a little personal safety alarm: a small black box about the size of a deck of cards with a pull cord that unleashed a squelching 140 dB siren. I tested it out at home. The din was horrifying. But to be honest, walking around by myself at night, I can’t say that knowing a potential attack could be made noisier really made me feel any safer. Plus, it was kinda bulky to have in my hands at the ready at all times. It’s no wonder then, that tech companies have since flooded the market with all sorts of personal, alarms, alerts, and trackers that are tinier and more wearable than ever.
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Brent Butterworth Posted: May 23, 2012 0 comments

Falling Skies, the TNT Network sci-fi series that debuted in summer 2011, is certainly one of the creepiest shows on TV right now. It’s creepy because of its grotesque, mysterious alien protagonists. And they’re creepy in large part because of the way they sound.

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Brent Butterworth Posted: Apr 04, 2012 0 comments

On Monday, we began Sound+Vision’s quest for a great $59 headphone by looking at the Skullcandy Hesh 2.0 and the Beyerdynamic DTX 300 p. Today, we’ll be auditioning the Philips CitiScape Metro and the AudioTechnica ATH-RE70 Retro-Face. On Friday, we’ll wrap up with the Urbanears Plattan and the House of Marley Positive Vibration.

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Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Feb 17, 2013 0 comments

Lighting is a powerful thing. Lighting can set a mood consciously, and perhaps subconsciously too. Does anyone like the green, cold bluish look of a florescent-lit cubeland office? How about a candle-lit dinner? By a fireplace? What about a cool winter morning, or a hot summer sunset?

The color of light plays a significant role in our lives, and most of the time, we barely notice. The comely nature of incandescent light bulbs has been disappearing for years, replaced by CFLs that despite a similar color temperature, offer little of their predecessor's warmth (literally).

Enter LEDs: Energy efficient sure, but more importantly, with red, green, and blue diodes, able to generate any color imaginable. If only someone would hook one up to an app. Oh wait!

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