David Vaughn

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David Vaughn Posted: May 21, 2015 19 comments

Audio Performance
Video Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $3,999

AT A GLANCE
Plus
11.1 channels with Audyssey MultEQ XT processing
Dolby Atmos, Auro-3D, and DTS:X surround
Full 4K video processing upgradable to HDCP 2.2
Minus
Limited range for remote sensor

THE VERDICT
Noticeably improved sound quality over its predecessor plus Atmos, Auro-3D, and DTS:X surround processing make the Marantz AV8802 a top-notch upgrade.

It’s been a little more than two years since I reviewed the Marantz AV8801 surround processor, and I liked that model so much, it never left my system. At the time, I thought it was the best-sounding pre/pro I had ever owned, and I had no real desire to upgrade anytime soon. That all changed last fall when Dolby announced that Atmos for the home was on its way. I started thinking how I could finagle four extra speakers into my room—because for some reason, I have this overwhelming desire to stay on the cutting edge of home theater technology, regardless of the personal expense.

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David Vaughn Posted: May 21, 2015 0 comments
Picture
Sound
Extras
As World War II is nearing an end in Europe, a Sherman tank is dispatched to a crucial crossroads in order to cut off a battalion of German soldiers trying to regroup with their comrades for one last push against the Allies. In command of the American force is a battle-hardened army sergeant nicknamed Wardaddy (Brad Pitt), who has promised his crew he’ll get them home alive, but when the taskforce is attacked on the way to the rally point, he has a difficult decision to make—press on and defend the position or go back for reinforcements?
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David Vaughn Posted: Apr 17, 2015 4 comments
Picture
Sound
Extras
Thomas is disjointed and confused as he wakes up on a rising elevator not knowing who or where he is. When he finally regains his focus, he’s surrounded by a group of teenage boys and realizes he’s not in Kansas anymore. He’s in the Glade, an enclave surrounded by giant walls that hide a maze, a mostly off-limits area that’s protected by the Grievers—cybernetic organisms that come out at night and will kill anyone who has ventured into the maze and hasn’t exited when the sun goes down.
David Vaughn Posted: Apr 02, 2015 8 comments
In Part 1 of my Atmos upgrade diary, I wrote about my unconventional home theater space with its vaulted ceiling and open floor plan, and how I eventually decided to lower the ceiling and install built-in speakers to achieve my Atmos dreams. Here, in Part 2, I’ll describe how I went about rebuilding my system for Atmos and talk about my first listening tests.
David Vaughn Posted: Mar 27, 2015 0 comments
Here at Sound & Vision we’ve given quite a bit of coverage to Dolby Atmos so far, and rightly so. Editor Rob Sabin has called it “the most discernible advance in home theater sound since the introduction of lossless digital audio formats on Blu-ray. And it’s one that leaves Dolby Pro Logic IIz and DTS Neo: X (height and width-channel surround formats) in the dust.”
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David Vaughn Posted: Mar 18, 2015 0 comments
Picture
Sound
Extras
Wallace has not been lucky in love. He dumped his last girlfriend when he caught her cheating on him and was so dejected he ended up dropping out of medical school and moving in with his sister and her young son. Shut away from the world for almost a year, he decides to attend his ex-college roommate’s party where he meets the perfect girl and gets her phone number right before she drops the bombshell that her boyfriend is waiting for her at home—some guys can’t catch a break. After Wallace’s previous relationship, he doesn’t want to be “that kind of guy” and discards her number. As luck would have it, he runs into her a few weeks later at the movies and the pair decide to just be friends—but what if something more develops?
David Vaughn Posted: Feb 27, 2015 7 comments

Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $9,500

AT A GLANCE
Plus
A new take on amplifier classes with iBias
Superb dynamics and soundstage
Ethernet capability for system monitoring
Minus
LED illumination too bright
Extremely heavy

THE VERDICT
Krell’s iBias technology has allowed them to deliver the benefits of a Class A multichannel amplifier in a way that will have audiophiles grinning from ear to ear.

Do you remember what it was like sitting for your high school or college lessons? Well, get ready for a trip down memory lane, because to give the Krell Chorus 7200 the praise it’s due and explain just how much this “little”-amplifier-that-could is going to change the audio industry, we’ll need to start with a short class in “classes.”

David Vaughn Posted: Feb 04, 2015 5 comments
Picture
3D-ness
Sound
Extras
Although he’s never seen combat, Major William Cage crosses the wrong general and finds himself on the front lines of a D-Day-like battle in France where he stands no chance of survival against an onslaught of ridiculously superior alien invaders. Within minutes of landing on the beach, he’s killed by one of those aliens, but instead of heading toward a white light, he instantly wakes up the day before the attack, and now he is destined to live that day over and over. In lieu of becoming alien fodder again, he hooks up with a heroic Special Forces warrior, and they hatch a plan to get Cage trained for battle and embark on a journey to rid the planet of the aliens for good.
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David Vaughn Posted: Jan 16, 2015 1 comments

VTF-15H MK2
Performance
Features
Build Quality
Value

VTF-3 MK5 HP
Performance
Features
Build Quality
Value
PRICE $899, $799

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Tremendous bass output
Excellent value proposition
Highly flexible setup controls
Minus
Won’t win any beauty contests
Heavy!

THE VERDICT
Both subs have plenty of bass per dollar and offer lots of adjustments to fine-tune the performance to fit your room.

Robert Southey was an English poet and author whose version of the fabulous children’s story “Goldilocks and the Three Bears” was the first one published, in 1837. While the tale has entertained kids for 177 years, little did Southey realize that his story is a fitting metaphor for modern subwoofers. Like the three bears’ porridge, chairs, and beds, subwoofers come in all shapes and sizes, and finding the one that’s “just right” for your particular room can sometimes require sampling different subs and room positions in order to get the best bass response.

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David Vaughn Posted: Dec 31, 2014 1 comments
Picture
Sound
Extras
After pulling off a blockbuster trade, general manager of the Cleveland Browns, Sonny Weaver, Jr. (Kevin Costner) now controls the number-one pick in the draft. The expectations of the fans are through the roof, and the ambitious owner of the team (Frank Langella) and new head coach (Denis Leary) are putting pressure on him to take the consensus first pick, but his gut is telling him to go in a completely different direction. Should he risk his job by following the instincts that got him to the top in the first place, or should he bow to the immense peer pressure?

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