Sort By: Post Date | Title | Publish Date
Filed under
Al Griffin Posted: Dec 08, 2016 0 comments
Got a tech question for Sound & Vision? Email us at AskSandV@gmail.com

Q Do you know of a good solution for streaming audio from a Windows PC to B&W P7 wireless headphones using Bluetooth? Is there some kind of USB adapter? —Robert Prinz

Al Griffin Posted: Dec 01, 2016 0 comments

Performance
Setup
Value
PRICE $219 as reviewed

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Highly affordable
Good uniformity
Quality construction
Minus
Time-consuming to assemble

THE VERDICT
The VApex PRO is a great option for anyone looking to put together a home theater on a budget without cutting corners.

Recent advances in projection screen technology have created a shift in home A/V from cave-like theaters that block out every last drop of light to open spaces that integrate with the rest of the living environment. For screen manufacturers, a main mission over the past few years has been to design models capable of withstanding some degree of ambient light while delivering good image quality over a wide viewing angle. Known as ambient-light-rejecting (ALR) screens, these do exactly what their name suggests: cancel out the impact of lamps, overhead lighting, and undraped windows so that the light you see reflected off the screen is primarily what’s beamed at it by the projector.

Filed under
Al Griffin Posted: Dec 01, 2016 7 comments
Got a tech question for Sound & Vision? Email us at AskSandV@gmail.com

Q Are there any standalone surround preamp/processors that decode Dolby Atmos? I’m interested in a unit that doesn’t include an AM/FM radio tuner. —Doc Lockett

Al Griffin Posted: Nov 29, 2016 2 comments

Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $1,299

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Impressive contrast and shadow detail
Handles both Dolby Vision and HDR10
Affordable price
Minus
Wi-Fi sync issue with included tablet remote
No extended-color-gamut capability
Some halo artifacts from local dimming backlight
Only one HDMI 2.0a input

THE VERDICT
Vizio’s budget-minded display handles both flavors of HDR and, a few quirks aside, delivers impressive performance.

When is a TV not a TV? When it’s an Ultra HD Home Theater Display. With the new M series, Vizio has chosen to shake up conventional expectations of what a TV should be and should do. One key change is that each M series set lacks a tuner to receive over-the-air digital TV broadcasts—hence, the company’s use of the term Home Theater Display. Another change is that Vizio has scrapped the typical full-featured IR remote control and replaced it with an Android tablet. Future-savvy or future shock? Read on and find out.

Filed under
Al Griffin Posted: Nov 23, 2016 0 comments
Got a tech question for Sound & Vision? Email us at AskSandV@gmail.com

Q Should I use the quartz lock feature on my Audio-Technica AT-LP120 turntable? I don't see or hear any difference when I press the quartz lock button. Same thing when I press the +10 /+20 pitch control button. FYI, I usually play records with the +10 pitch option selected. —Josh Rosenthal

Filed under
Al Griffin Posted: Nov 17, 2016 10 comments
Got a tech question for Sound & Vision? Email us at AskSandV@gmail.com

Q For years, I used iTunes to rip my CDs in the Apple Lossless Audio Compression (ALAC) format and load them onto a 160-gigabyte iPod classic. Now that iPods are no more, I would like to switch to one of the new hi-res-capable portable players but want to avoid having to rip all of my CDs again. Do any of the new players support ALAC so I can continue using iTunes? Also, is there some way to use iTunes to load files from my computer to a new portable player? —Mark Hoornstra / Maryland

Filed under
Al Griffin Posted: Nov 10, 2016 2 comments
Got a tech question for Sound & Vision? Email us at AskSandV@gmail.com

Q I'm slow to bite on buying an Ultra HDTV because I’m waiting to see which high dynamic range format will stick. If I buy an HDR10-only set and Dolby Vision wins, can support for that format be added through a future software update? —Ray Blackburn

Filed under
Al Griffin Posted: Nov 07, 2016 2 comments
Got a tech question for Sound & Vision? Email us at AskSandV@gmail.com

Q Is Samsung’s 2016 Ultra HDTV line capable of passing a 5.1 surround sound signal received from an HDMI input to a Sonos Playbar system via its optical digital audio output? I’ve heard that only Sony and Vizio TVs provide this 5.1 passthrough capability.—Glenn Patton / via e-mail

Filed under
Al Griffin Posted: Nov 03, 2016 1 comments
Got a tech question for Sound & Vision? Email us at AskSandV@gmail.com

Q I bought my Samsung UN65JS9500 Ultra HDTV back in 2015.  According to Samsung, it supports high dynamic range. However, when I browse the Netflix app on the TV, the listings will indicate if a program is 4K/Ultra HD, but not if it’s high dynamic range. I’ve asked both Samsung and Netflix tech support what the problem is, but have yet to receive a clear answer. Can you help? — Jon Fraser

Al Griffin Posted: Nov 02, 2016 1 comments
2D Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $549

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Inexpensive
HDR compatible
Impressive contrast
Minus
Minor backlight artifacts
No extended color-space option
Flimsy stand

THE VERDICT
Hisense’s sensibly priced 50H8C does many things right, but buyers expecting an ultimate HDR experience will want to pass.

There’s been plenty of what tech marketing types call “disruption” in the TV industry over the past decade, with big-name Japanese brands like Mitsubishi, Hitachi, and Toshiba bowing out and Chinese companies like TCL and Hisense stepping in. While TCL has gained recognition as a maker of Roku TVs that span a range of screen sizes, it’s still a bit early in the game for us to get a sense of what Hisense is all about. What’s clear so far is that the company is producing sets with upscale features like 4K Ultra HD resolution and high dynamic range, at disruptively affordable prices. Case in point: the new 50H8C, an HDR-compatible 50-inch UHDTV that sells for a mere $549.

Pages