Darryl Wilkinson

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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 23, 2015 0 comments

Denon HEOS Amp
Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value

Denon HEOS Link Stereo Preamplifier
Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $2,148 as reviewed

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Stellar audio performance
Simple, intuitive app
Minus
No desktop controller
Fewer streaming services than Sonos

THE VERDICT
It’s not the first wireless multiroom sound system, but it certainly ranks among the best.

When I asked the folks at Denon why they felt the need to develop a multiroom, streaming music system, this was the answer they gave: “Probably for similar reasons why we developed the LP turntable and didn’t continue to manufacture gramophones.” That wasn’t quite the answer I was looking for, but it was an interesting way of putting a tangible perspective on the past 100-plus years that Denon has been involved in the audio industry.

In this day and age, it’s the rare person who sits at home enjoying selections from his or her collection of bulky spinning cylinders; streaming songs is what’s popular now. In fact, our collective propensity for listening to audio from the Internet or music stored on NAS drives and computers has resulted in wireless speakers of various kinds becoming the product du jour of nearly every audio manufacturer on the planet. So the question I really should have asked was how Denon thought they could build a system that would rise above the flood of streaming music speakers and systems on the market—and, specifically, how in the world Denon thought they could compete head to head with the Goliath of streaming music systems, Sonos.

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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 14, 2015 0 comments
Predicting what the lovechild of so-and-so and such-and-such would be like isn’t an exact science. After all, Frankenstein’s monster was a lovechild of sorts, and we all know how badly that went. But after looking over a new Kickstarter project, I’m convinced that if Logitech Harmony, Bang & Olufsen , and Revolv (R.I.P.) ever rubbed up against one another long enough to swap the right amount of corporate DNA to create a lovechild, NEEO, “The Thinking Remote”, would be it...
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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 10, 2015 0 comments
Initially billed as “The first smart home security device for everyone”, it’s taken some time for Canary, to go from Indiegogo sensation to real product implementation. Canary was only looking to raise $100,000 during its crowdfunding campaign in July of 2013. By Aug 26th, they’d succeeded in collecting $1,961,663. Canary is finally shipping to U.S. backers now, and new retail deliveries should begin by...
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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 10, 2015 4 comments
I’ve seen plenty of cool product concepts in my time. A lot of them, perhaps the majority, have imploded along the way as the fragile dreamscape of the theoretical world is thoroughly trashed by the much harsher, take-no-prisoners landscape of the real world. Since nothing other than beta units have shipped yet, it’s not possible to tell whether or not Ecovent’s intelligent HVAC vents and environmental sensor network will manage to be more than a brief blast of hot air. But I truly hope so, because it’s one the most exciting products I can every remember coming across.

Put simply, Ecovent makes...

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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 10, 2015 0 comments
Because I suffer from a rare form of workophobia and isolationism, I sometimes have to take a timeout from the world at large and listen to music or some sort of hypnotic trance-inducing soundscape. Lying down with headphones is difficult, at best, and even using in-ear monitors can be uncomfortable when you’re lying on your side. Of course, then there’s the headphone/earbud cable albatross around your neck that invariably gets caught on something and yanks one of the buds out of your ear or wraps around your neck almost strangling you.

SleepPhones calls its headphone-embedded headband “pajamas for your ears”, and they’re designed to be...

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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 08, 2015 0 comments
Most of the current DIY smart home automation systems suffer from multiple drawbacks, many of which become apparent during the setup of the smart home hub and identifying the smart devices in the system. When it comes to market, OOMI’s Cube is designed to change all that.

The OOMI Cube is the heart of the...

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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 08, 2015 0 comments
Most of us have made hand gestures at the TV at one point or another over the years, and they haven’t always been the nicest of hand signals. eyesight Technologies’s singlecue is an AV remote control and home automation interface that wants you to use hand gestures to control your AV system as well as all sorts of home automation devices in throughout your home.
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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 08, 2015 0 comments
Stumbling through the Sands Expo, I came across one of those seemingly insignificant products that turn out to be an elegant and simple solution to a never-ending problem. In this case, I found the NEET booth and its assortment of Cable Keepers. Something the company calls the “World's Simplest Cable Management Solution”.

Using one of NEET’s Cable Keepers is like having...

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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 07, 2015 0 comments
Soundwall calls its flat-panel, on-wall, wireless, stereo speaker system a “connected canvas” because it’s both a connected speaker capable of streaming audio from internet music services or from your mobile device and...
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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 06, 2015 0 comments
Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it. Or so goes the old saying. BloomSky, “the world's first crowd connected module”, won’t change the weather. BloomSky says its aggregated crowd-sourced community weather data will “disrupt the way people see, think and interact with the weather.” A spherical device about the size of a softball, BloomSky is a...

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