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Thomas J. Norton Posted: Jul 03, 2005 0 comments

<I>Avoid a Blue Tuesday by capping off your holiday weekend plans with the end of the world! Whether we will become extinct as a species from within or without is the subject of two movies on DVD, one an environmental-disaster flick of dubious distinction, the other a classic loosely based on the Victorian novel that in turn has inspired a current remake. Thomas J. Norton and Fred Manteghian report on 2004's </I>The Day After Tomorrow: All Access Collector's Edition<I> and 1953's </I>The War of the Worlds.

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Thomas J. Norton Posted: Jul 01, 2005 0 comments

Genesis Microchip, the parent company of Faroudja, has completed a licensing agreement with UK-based Meridian Audio Limited, giving Meridian the right to promote Genesis' Faroudja technologies, products, and brands worldwide. The agreement authorizes Meridian to incorporate, manufacture, and distribute Faroudja's video technologies and home theater solutions as part of its audio/video product line. Meridian will also work with Genesis to develop advanced video processing algorithms for use in future Meridian products.

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Thomas J. Norton Posted: Jun 26, 2005 0 comments

<IMG SRC="/images/archivesart/headshot150.tjn.jpg" WIDTH=150 HEIGHT=194 HSPACE=6 VSPACE=4 BORDER=0 ALIGN=RIGHT>"Sell the Mercedes! Hock the mink!" So wrote a still-active audio scribe (Peter Moncrieff) a quarter century ago while reviewing a pricey (for the time) tube preamp. Today, you can still pay more than the price of a Mercedes for an amplifier or speakers. And while few people today would be caught alive wearing a dead rat, the proverbial mink coat wouldn't go far toward the price of that top-drawer, custom home theater installation, either.

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Thomas J. Norton Posted: Jun 22, 2005 Published: Jun 23, 2005 0 comments

At a recent press event held at Genesis Audio in Irvine, California, Linn launched two new lines of speakers&mdash;the Artikulat and the Komponent. The Artikulat is Linn's latest entry in the increasingly crowded, price-no-object category of audio and video kit, as they say in the UK, where Linn is based (Scotland, actually).

Thomas J. Norton Posted: Jun 19, 2005 0 comments

Most consumers think of a projection screen as that rickety, stand-mounted contraption the AV clubber set up in the classroom when you were about to see a boring video, film, or slide show&mdash;pop quiz tomorrow. It was white, slightly sparkly, squarish, and nobody gave it much thought except when the teacher tripped over it on the way to the blackboard.

Thomas J. Norton Posted: Jun 06, 2005 0 comments

Even as DVI and HDMI were being adopted by video manufacturers as the digital links of choice, one limitation of these connections was already well known: they don't like to be used in long lengths. The generally accepted limit for an unassisted digital video cable of this type is about 5 meters or just over 16 feet, particularly with high-definition sources.

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Thomas J. Norton Posted: Jun 01, 2005 Published: Jun 02, 2005 0 comments

In separate line shows held in San Diego and New York, Hitachi announced their new video line last month. Most of the models will begin appearing in stores before the start of the annual fall holiday buying season.

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Thomas J. Norton Posted: Jun 01, 2005 0 comments

<IMG SRC="/images/archivesart/headshot150.tjn.jpg" WIDTH=150 HEIGHT=194 HSPACE=6 VSPACE=4 BORDER=0 ALIGN=RIGHT>George Lucas is a fan. I don't mean of <I>Star Wars</I> (though he is, I suspect, that, too); rather, he's a fan of digital cinema. And he wanted his magnum opus, <I>Star Wars III: Revenge of the Sith</I>, to play in digital on the biggest screens in the world. That covers a lot of territory, but the screen at the Cinerama Dome in Hollywood, which measures 32 by 86 feet, just might be the biggest anywhere.

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Thomas J. Norton Posted: May 30, 2005 0 comments

When Fujitsu announced a high-end LCD projector, my first reaction was a stifled yawn. After all, until recently, home theater LCD projectors had been limited to the low end. Yes, they sometimes offered very good value for the money, and we've given good reviews to more than one of them over the years. But an LCD projector priced like a new car, in competition with 3-chip DLPs and high-end LCoS projectors, seemed far-fetched. Even more surprising was the fact that Fujitsu was known in the home video market for plasma displays, not projectors.

Thomas J. Norton Posted: May 22, 2005 0 comments

In today's hotly contested home theater market, the big consumer-electronics manufacturers are grabbing an increasingly important slice of the pie. Their new, big-boned receivers&mdash;with prices to match&mdash;approach (or sometimes exceed) the performance of most separates. The competition is fierce, with those mega-corporations using their marketing clout, engineering expertise, and production efficiency to built better products, but smaller companies can still compete. They're fighting back with separate pre-pros and power amps that trade on their traditional strength: sound quality.