Darryl Wilkinson

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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Feb 12, 2006 0 comments
Unlike other notable engineers in the industry who've managed to closely associate their names with the products and technologies they've developed, William Hecht, the inventor of the soft-dome tweeter, has had a quite successful career working behind the scenes. Although most of us take the soft-dome tweeter for granted, it's been the most widely used tweeter design worldwide since it was first patented in 1967.
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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Feb 10, 2006 0 comments
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) - soon to be known as the Fickle Communications Commission by television programming providers - has had second thoughts about whether or not it's a good thing for you to be able to pick and choose among the TV channels you subscribe to.
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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Feb 01, 2006 0 comments
Tributaries Cable, guys better known for high-end cables and the like, are introducing their first power-protection component, the TX500 Power Manager. The new unit is man enough to handle up to 10 components with 1,800 watts of combined demand. (That's almost enough juice to power a small, third-world nation.) After a surge of inspiration, Tributaries included protection for two telephone connections and for a pair of fully independent RF signal paths engineered specifically for cable, satellite, or antenna connections. Image quality is protected by an RF circuit design that maintains a consistent 75-ohm impedance with bandwidth capability in excess of 1.5GHz. (That kind of bandwidth capability could most likely carry the entire broadcast TV channel lineup of a small, third-world country.)
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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 28, 2006 0 comments
After simmering on the back burner for lack of compelling performance and ease-of-use, "convergence" was once again a hot topic at the 2006 CES. Sure, it wasn't as ubiquitous as things designed to work with Apple's iPod (including a toilet paper dispenser/iPod dock combo - hey, I'm not making that up), but convergence wasn't far behind. Some items were just plain bizarre (like that iPod toilet paper thingee). Others made you think, "Hey, that's cool!" And then there were the ones that made you say, "Man, I think I'd actually use that."
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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 24, 2006 0 comments
Video on an iPod isn't what it used to be.
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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 16, 2006 0 comments
JVC is coming to the rescue of all those multichannel-challenged folks wandering the planet listening to two boring channels flowing from iMP3 players to their ears through a standard pair of headphones or earphones. JVC's new SU-HD1, about the size of a typical wallet (bifold, not trifold), will accept analog (via an analog input cord that can be stored in the bottom of the slender gadget) or digital (courtesy of an optical digital mini-jack input) audio. Built-in Dolby Headphone technology provides a 5.1-channel surround sound experience through standard cheap or really good two-channel headphones. The SU-HD1 runs off of two AA batteries and weighs a mere 3.5 ounces when fully loaded.
Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 11, 2006 0 comments
Home Theater in a (Very Narrow) Box.

Thanks to plasma TVs, everyone is convinced that skinny and flat are where it's at when it comes to home theater—and those now-out-of-work robotic assembly lines that used to crank out CRTs by the boatload haven't been the only ones affected by the slender-is-better trend. You can't throw a crumbled-up extended-warranty brochure in an electronics store nowadays without hitting some sort of sleek, on-wall, "plasma-friendly" home theater speaker. Some manufacturers, fully embracing the slim trend, have created three-in-one (left front, center, and right front) single-cabinet on-wall speakers designed to be mounted above or below your flat-panel TV—or set on top of a rear-projection TV. Boston Acoustics, Definitive Technology, Atlantic Technology, and Mirage, for example, have all come up with their own variations of three channels coexisting in one narrow box.

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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 11, 2006 0 comments
Aural Acoustics is a speaker company with roots and attitude from the old days of hi-fi before anyone ever thought of pairing speakers with a TV - but the new company has a decidely modern, music-and-home-theater sensibility. They debuted their first speaker (the Model B) at the 2005 Home Electronic Show in New York City to great reviews. This year, the company used a hotel room in the Alexis Park during the 2006 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) to unveil the new Model P50. Although the low-key venue was less well attended than either of the two main convention centers, almost everyone who braved the long shuttle bus lines and made the trek to the Aural Acoustics room were extremely impressed with what they heard.
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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 07, 2006 0 comments
Sometimes, as you wander the aisles and hallways of CES, a pattern or theme appears among the various demonstrations you see. In some cases, this is by design (if you were a real journalist and carefully planned out your day ahead of time). More often than not, however, it's from sheer dumb luck or an unavoidable preponderance of manufacturers chasing a particular, small segment of the market.


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