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TECH2

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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.

Filed under
Brent Butterworth Posted: Sep 12, 2012 0 comments

Apple announced today that it’s switching from the 30-pin connector on the bottom of iPods, iPhones, and iPads to something more compact. You can hardly blame Apple’s designers, since that connector is more than a decade old. But the move will essentially obsolete millions of iPod/iPhone docks already in consumers’ homes.

Filed under
Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Mar 30, 2012 0 comments

Between the words I think and the words you read, there are several stages of editing. The first takes place within my brain. The last, at the hands of a copy editor [hah! - Ed]. In both cases, this is a good thing.

But sometimes, a great line gets pulled that I don't think should have been cut.

So here, for your perusal, are some choice lines of mine, from various articles, someone deemed unworthy for mass consumption.

Filed under
Brent Butterworth Posted: Jul 13, 2011 0 comments

An audio reviewer hears two lines over and over: “That never happened with any of the other samples” and “We created this [fill in the blank] because the products that are out there now are inadequate.” I heard the second line last week in a ramshackle Van Nuys, California industrial space bordered by a security gate and half-filled with piles of decades-old test gear. Unlikely as the setting seemed, its tenant actually delivered on his claims.

Filed under
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.

Filed under
Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Jul 27, 2012 0 comments

I have been a vocal hater of the "free" music service Spotify. The infinitesimal amount they paid for each song, to me, was a slap in the face to musicians everywhere. You can read my original rant on why I think Spotify is unfair, and the follow up where I recant slightly and recognize Spotify has some redeeming qualities.

Not that I ever expected it to go away, but far too many people love the service, including musicians. So I give up.

Sort of.

Filed under
Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Nov 24, 2011 0 comments

Everyone else is doing those Black Friday shopping guides. We do things a bit differently here at the Tech2 shack on the S+V compound.

Knowing how many people have smartphones, and would rather look at them then stare at the schlub in front of them in line, we present “Stuff to Read While Waiting in Line.” Or, to translate for the New Yorkers out there: “Stuff to Read While Waiting on Line.”

You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll burp turkey from yesterday.

Filed under
Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Dec 24, 2012 0 comments

Unless you've been living down a hobbit hole, or care nothing about movies and technology (in which case, how did you get here?) you've heard about The Hobbit and it's magical new "High Frame Rate": 48fps. This doubling of the traditional movie framerate has gotten much hoopla, with director Peter Jackson claiming it's the best way to see his new film.

So with an open mind, and a slightly emptier wallet, I saw The Hobbit in IMAX HFR 3D, and then a few days later, in "regular" 24fps RealD with Dolby Atmos. The difference was not subtle.

Filed under
Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Mar 16, 2012 0 comments

I’m not sure where to begin. In a Heisenbergian fashion, I can’t describe the game without ruining the game. I can’t really say what it’s about, what goes on, or really, what my feelings are after playing it.

I can only use words like “ethereal,” “haunting,” “absorbing,” even “beautiful.”

Well, maybe I can describe how I feel about it. I think. . . I loved it.

Filed under
Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Aug 15, 2011 0 comments

Light is one of those intangible things that is stuff and whatnot. Wait, no it isn't. It's light. As in, "Aziz, LIGHT!"

On the one hand, it's either on or it's off. On the other hand, it's half-on, half-off, and you've programmed it to go half-off and half-on again at the touch of a button.

If you don't have kids to turn lights on for you (or maybe you have kids, and they don't turn them back off), Lutron has a host of products to make life a little easier. How much easier is best explained by experience. Which brings us to the aptly named Lutron Experence Center.

Filed under
Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Apr 12, 2013 0 comments

"The book is not a direct influence. That is to say that it did not spur me on to write any sort of song cycle or (gasp!) concept album. Rather, I found myself writing a lot of songs with a sense of a specific space, my hometown of Huntington, Long Island, New York."

So explains Bill Janovitz and about his new album, Walt Whitman Mall, and it seems as apt a description as I can think of.

Oh, and it's also really good. He didn't say that part (obviously).

Filed under
Brent Butterworth Posted: May 25, 2012 0 comments

If I were forced to choose between the $20K worth of audio test gear I own or the demo CD that cost me probably 20 cents to make, I’d take the latter without hesitation. Test gear is great for telling me how well an audio product is engineered. But when I want to find out what an audio product does — i.e., how a listener will perceive its sound — the demo CD is a much better tool.

Filed under
Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Oct 06, 2011 0 comments

It's an interesting thing, this. A tweaky audiophile program that strips away all the junk your computer could be doing while playing back your digital audio files.

The idea is to give each file as good an environment for playback as possible, minimizing jitter and maximizing sound quality.

Well, OK. That could be cool.

Filed under
Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Aug 16, 2012 0 comments

It’s hard to believe Team Fortress 2 is 5 years old. I remember waiting breathlessly for the Orange box to come out, unable to decide which game I’d play first: TF2 or Episode Two of Half-Life. There was also some puzzle game included as a bonus, but puzzle games are lame.

Three days of nothing but the amazing Portal have since proved that last thought incorrect, but over time I came to love Team Fortress 2. I was shocked, in preparation for this review, that I hadn’t played in almost a year. Thanks Steam for making the passage of time so blatant.

Last summer Team Fortress 2 went free to play, and to mix things up (and get some players back, no doubt), they’ve added a new mode: Mann vs. Machine. It’s pretty awesome.

Filed under
Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Dec 08, 2011 0 comments

I'm a big fan of the Kindle Fire. It's the iPad's equal in every meaningful measure, plus it sports a more convenient form factor. Check out my review and this week's iPad/tablet face off.

But there's one thing I won't use it for: reading. Chances are, you won't want to either. So if you're thinking about getting one to use as an eReader, allow me a few words to talk you out of it.

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