Leslie Shapiro

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Leslie Shapiro Posted: Jan 08, 2014 0 comments
It takes a lot to design a killer-looking speaker, but perhaps that money is better spent on sound quality. Ever practical, the designers at China’s Microlab put all their budget into making the FC10 ($77) good quality speakers that look nice in person, but they most certainly veer away from the sleek and swoopy design that Apple designers have deemed essential. They have a clean and simple look, lacking the curved aesthetic that most products embrace these days. The FC10 are wedge-shaped speakers designed to solidly surround any laptop - Apple or otherwise; the pair weighs 4.41 lbs.

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Leslie Shapiro Posted: Jan 08, 2014 0 comments
While every manufacturer is making speakers in any color you want, as long as it’s black, id America is breaking the mold with their colorful new portable Bluetooth speaker, the TouchTone. This is a compact speaker that won’t break the bank - it’s available now for $80. It comes in a variety of colors, with an even greater palette available soon.

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Leslie Shapiro Posted: Jan 08, 2014 0 comments
NYNE is a relatively new company that made a big showing last year at CES and is back, ready to impress again this year. Although they’ve discontinued their gorgeous home product line, NYNE, a division of BOSS Audio Systems, is jumping into the small-speaker market with both feet. However, unlike other manufacturers to make a single portable speaker to fit a variety of needs, NYNE is here at CES with a variety of speakers, each filling a specific niche.

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Leslie Shapiro Posted: Jan 08, 2014 1 comments
Most companies can ruggedize a speaker, give it some mild water-resistance and slap on a “water-resistant” sticker, and call it an outdoor product. BRAVEN has taken a much more serious approach in the new BRV-X and BRAVEN 855s.

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Leslie Shapiro Posted: Jan 07, 2014 0 comments
Skullcandy has an image as a badass headphone manufacturer. They showed up at CES set on keeping that reputation. The Air Raid (MSRP $150) is a portable Bluetooth speaker that plays loud, and has drop-resistance and weather-resistance to take on all the abuses you can throw at it. I chatted with Sam Noertker, one of the engineers behind the Air Raid for some inside perspective.

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Leslie Shapiro Posted: Jan 07, 2014 0 comments
While most press conferences here at CES are geared towards big, life-changing electronics, there is a growing segment of conferences and products devoted to kids and families. While most companies target products to women by making them smaller and well, cuter, other companies are recognizing that moms also purchase serious technology to make their lives easier. Another oft-overlooked segment is the educational and children’s technology market.

Leslie Shapiro Posted: Jan 06, 2014 0 comments
The Pocket Kick is a “honey-I-shrunk-the-kids” version of Soundfreaq’s already popular Sound Kick. However, unlike Soundfreaq’s usual sharp, straight lines and edges, the Pocket Kick has rounded edges. Much more pocket-friendly, don’t you think? The Pocket Kick is just about the same size as an iPhone 5 but slightly thicker to accommodate the speakers. (Dimensions are 5.9” x 2.5” x 1.2”.) The Pocket Kick has a slight stereo sound with two speakers powered by a 5-watt amplifier. It’s a rugged little thing, with steel grills on the front and back. The “kick” is provided by a passive bass radiator on the back of the device.

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Leslie Shapiro Posted: Jan 06, 2014 0 comments
Bluetooth speakers seem to be either miniscule and lightweight, or big and heavy. The Supertooth Disco4 ($50) is extremely light, but it has a big speaker cabinet for a big sound without the weight penalty. It weighs just over a pound with a built-in carrying handle. Even better, the Disco4 has Bluetooth 4.0 A2DP and it features tap-to-pair NFC capability. My phone paired almost instantly to the speaker using this feature.

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Leslie Shapiro Posted: Jan 06, 2014 0 comments
Voxx isn’t one of those names that every consumer knows and owns. Standing in line for the press conference today, the guy behind me had to ask me what they make. While not one of the biggest names at CES, they unveiled quite a few new products that might make them one of the most interesting names at CES.

Leslie Shapiro Posted: Dec 23, 2013 1 comments
Hitting the market this late in the game, Amped Wireless better have something special with their BTSA1 Bluetooth speaker adapter. Yes, like so many other adapters, it lets you to turn any audio playback system into a Bluetooth-enabled system. But the adapter also delivers a few unexpected, and welcome, surprises.

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