Michael Trei  |  Jun 24, 2020  |  0 comments

Build Quality
PRICE $299

Very good performance
Exceptional ease of use
Accommodates typical turntables
No remote control

The Spinbase is a fulfilling high-performance alternative to an entry-level component-based stereo system.

At first glance, almost everything about the Andover Spinbase turntable speaker system seems wrong. Why? Audiophiles go to great lengths to make sure their turntable, a delicate vibration sensor, is isolated from external sources of mechanical vibration. But with the Spinbase, you plunk your turntable on top of the worst offender in a system—the speaker. That's a bit like asking a ballerina to do a pirouette while being tackled by the Green Bay Packers' offensive line.

Al Griffin  |  Jun 23, 2020  |  0 comments
Got a tech question for Sound & Vision? Email us at

Q I have a Vizio TV, model number D48f-E0. The company’s specs say that it’s a “Full Array LED display.” It also has a “Backlight Control” in its picture settings menu that automatically dims or brightens the backlight during viewing. Is this feature the same thing as local dimming? I’m confused here — if backlight control and local dimming are separate features, what’s the difference between them? —James Paxton, via email

Ken C. Pohlmann  |  Jun 22, 2020  |  13 comments
I know, I know. Your plate is full. I won't recite the litany of things already on your mind. We've already recited that list plenty of times. Speaking for myself, I religiously devote a solid hour every night, usually between the hours of 3 am and 4 am, to reciting the list. Well, here's another thing for the list: SSL certificates. In particular, they seem to be expiring.

Roger Kanno  |  Jun 19, 2020  |  0 comments
Jumanji: The Next Level is an adventure-comedy with a winning cast featuring Dwayne Johnson, Kevin Hart, Jack Black, and Karen Gillan. The plot is a bit formulaic and doesn't quite take this episode in the Jumanji franchise to the next level as stated, but the action is plentiful and there's enough humorous and family-friendly dialogue to keeps things moving apace. As far as Hollywood blockbusters go, Jumanji: The Next Level is a pretty good offering, with plenty of exciting stunts and special effects and high production values.
Al Griffin  |  Jun 19, 2020  |  0 comments
British hi-fi firm Naim has added native support for Qobuz high-res music streaming to its 2nd generation Mu-so family wireless music systems, the Mu-so 2 and Mu-so Qb, both Sound & Vision 2019 Top Picks. The service is available now via an over-the-air firmware upgrade that users can download for free.
Bob Ankosko  |  Jun 19, 2020  |  2 comments
In 8K: The Next Big Thing in Home Entertainment, Chris Chinnock, executive director of the 8K Association (8KA), makes the case for 8K even though programming is scarce and will likely remain so for some time. We asked readers to weigh in and have the results.
Bob Ankosko  |  Jun 18, 2020  |  0 comments
Speakers are the single most important link in the audio chain — one that defines the sonic character of your system, whether it’s a straight up stereo rig or a surround-sound movie setup. Great speakers put you in the front row of an intimate musical performance or draw you into a scene in an emotional (and sometimes harrowing) way. Here we spotlight 16 of Sound & Vision’s Top Picks, running the gamut from inexpensive wireless speakers to a selection of home theater systems featuring a suite of wireless speakers at one end and a stately six-piece setup at the other. The mix also highlights a couple stand-out subwoofers and soundbars as well as a handful of all-in-one wireless speakers, including one you can take outside.
Michael Trei  |  Jun 17, 2020  |  5 comments

Build Quality
PRICE $899 (piano gloss black), $799 (black ash)

Big bass punch from a small form factor
Excellent value
Versatile smartphone control app
No auto-calibration/room EQ feature

The new SB-2000 Pro delivers big punch for a reasonable price, with tremendous fine-tuning capability offered by its smartphone control app.

With 12 different subwoofers in its line, I'm pretty certain that SVS makes more models than any other subwoofer manufacturer. In providing so many options, not only does the company cover a wide range of price points, but they can also offer subwoofers matched to different use cases, from high-end audiophile setups to big, slamming home theater rigs.

Thomas J. Norton  |  Jun 16, 2020  |  0 comments
We all suffer through choosing a film to play for friends and family on a movie night. This might invariably include Joe and Ann from down the block, the neighborhood’s premier movie fans (apart from you!) who claim to have seen just about everything. Of course, most of what they’ve seen might have been on a 40-inch set (or even an old 27-inch, low definition CRT), constantly interrupted by commercials. Or perhaps new neighbor Bob from across the street, who hasn’t seen a movie in 20 years on anything but his computer — or not at all.
Al Griffin  |  Jun 15, 2020  |  0 comments
While interest in movies on disc continues to be strong even with the massive growth of streaming, there’s been a deficit of new disc players to choose from. We’ve recommended models from Panasonic and Pioneer semi-recently, but with no new Ultra HD Blu-ray players unveiled at CES 2020, there's nothing from that category in our review queue at present. Hmm, what about this new PlayStation 5 thing everyone’s been talking about?