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Mark Fleischmann Posted: May 24, 2011 0 comments
In the mood for Vudu's 1080p video stream with Dolby Digital Plus surround? Vizio is going to make it easy for you by building a dedicated Vudu button into 2011 TVs, Blu-ray players, and set-top boxes.

Vudu says other manufacturers will offer the button too though their names weren't disclosed at presstime.

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Mark Fleischmann Posted: Nov 25, 2013 0 comments

PRICE $330

Dedicated surrounds for true 5.1-channel sound
Bluetooth connection to mobile sources
Effective DTS Volume mode
Less impressive performance with music

A surprisingly good-sounding, high-value choice for movie sound, though serious music lovers might need to look elsewhere

Home theater, as I’ve always defined it, is the union of big-screen TV and surround sound. At their best, they have the power to suspend disbelief and pull you into a cinematic narrative or musical experience. Sometimes soundbars make the cut, and sometimes they don’t. Any decent-sounding soundbar—whether it has 2.0, 2.1, or 5.1 channels—is likely to improve over the awful speakers built into most TVs. Making the evening news intelligible is no small contribution to household happiness. But few soundbars try to cross the barrier from convenience to full-bore 5.1-channel rapture. The Vizio S4251W-B4 is just such a product.

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Mark Fleischmann Posted: May 31, 2011 0 comments
Price: $390 At A Glance: Three-channel soundbar with separate surrounds and wireless sub • SRS TruSurround HD and TruVolume processing • Designed to accompany 40-inch and larger HDTVs

A Moment of Tru

Vizio, how you’ve grown. When flatpanel HDTVs came along, you were among the first brands created especially to bring the new display technology to eager consumers. Now that butt-ugly direct-view and rear-pro sets are largely a bad memory, you’re at the forefront of a burgeoning business. Your market share is nothing to sneeze at, and your XVT553SV LED-backlit LCD set is a Home Theater Top Pick. What are you going to do for an encore?

Mark Fleischmann Posted: Jun 15, 2009 0 comments
Price: $350 At A Glance: First soundbar to use SRS TruVolume audio processing • Operates on stereo signals • Wireless sub works with no setup hassles

High and Wide

Vizio is:
(a) a flat-panel video brand
(b) an audio brand
(c) a serotonin reuptake inhibitor
(d) a line of rimless eyeglasses
(e) a typographical error

If you guessed (a), you were wrong. The correct answer is (a)+(b).

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Mark Fleischmann Posted: Apr 02, 2009 0 comments
Volunteers connected with a joint public/private service program will help ease the transition from analog to digital television broadcasting for low-income households, minorities, seniors, the disabled, those who live in rural areas, and those who don't speak English.
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Mark Fleischmann Posted: May 01, 2007 0 comments
Are you willing to pay $300 plus $6-10 a shot for an Internet-connected set-top download box that starts a movie as soon as you press the play button?
Mark Fleischmann Posted: Mar 14, 2013 2 comments

Price: $1,299 At a Glance: DAC, headphone amp, preamp for digital sources • Asynchronous USB input • Makes your audio files sing

The Wadia 121 calls itself a decoding computer. While the term DAC (digital-to-analog converter) also fits, Wadia understands that nomenclature is destiny. This product just may be destined to change forever the way you hear high-resolution music files, signaling a new chapter in audio history that no audiophile can afford to ignore.

Mark Fleischmann Posted: Sep 05, 2008 20 comments
The Wadia 170 iTransport is the first iPod docking device to coax a digital signal out of the iPod (incidentally, my 82-year-old mom loves hers). Till now the iPod could output only a line-level analog signal to docks. How Wadia managed this is a story yet to be told. The company insists that there is no need to pay a hacker to crack the case –- the 170 is Apple-approved. Price: $379.
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Mark Fleischmann Posted: Aug 28, 2009 0 comments
Back when digital-to-analog converters were a totally new component product, Wadia was out there will some of the first and best products. That tradition continues with the Wadia 151 PowerDAC mini. It's also a 50-watt stereo amp. Maybe just the thing for your two-channel hideaway. Price: $1195.
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Mark Fleischmann Posted: Sep 30, 2008 0 comments
Wal-Mart has become the latest online music retailer to shut down the encryption-key servers for its DRM-encrusted downloads. As a result, anyone unfortunate enough to have bought the latter will have to burn them to CDs for archiving. Otherwise it will become impossible to transfer them to other computers and players in the future.


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