SV Staff  |  Dec 03, 2018  |  0 comments
Beyond an abundance of turkey and great Black Friday deals, the month of November produced a handful of Sound & Vision Top Picks, starting with two state-of-the-art audio components — one a processor for home theater enthusiasts in search of the very best surround sound has to offer, the other a high-performance integrated amp that will leave audiophiles drooling. From there, we move on to audiophile-caliber headphones that can be had for far less than you might expect and Sony’s latest and most affordable take on native 4K video projection.
SV Staff  |  Dec 03, 2018  |  0 comments
Samson, the Hicksville, NY-based audio company best known for its professional studio monitors and Hartke-brand bass amplifiers, recently expanded its line of MediaOne studio monitors with an affordable set of compact powered speakers designed for desktop applications.
Mike Mettler  |  Nov 30, 2018  |  0 comments
“Imagine there’s no heaven. It’s easy if you try.” That profound statement set the table for the visceral round of revelations John Lennon had in store for us on his second proper solo album following his departure from The Beatles, September 1971’s Imagine. Whereas “God,” the critical denouement on Lennon’s galvanizing December 1970 solo debut Plastic Ono Band, served as a gasp-inducing, barrier-breaking declarative manifesto, “Imagine” proffered more of a “what if” scenario that embodied an inclusively universal yet concurrently subversive scope.
Josef Krebs  |  Nov 30, 2018  |  0 comments
Writer-director Terrence Malick’s remarkable, poetic The Tree of Life tells the story of a family in 1950s Texas and the impact that losing a son has on them. Using a stream-of-consciousness flow of images and sounds, the film authentically captures a childhood remembered by centering on the lyrical day-to-day, moment-by-moment experiences of the two surviving young brothers. The film examines, from many angles, the questioning of God and the meaning to life in an evolutionary sense. Relationships with Him are expressed in whispered voiceovers and through a long sequence that visualizes the creation of the world.
SV Staff  |  Nov 29, 2018  |  2 comments
GoldenEar Technology has introduced a slightly scaled-down, less expensive follow-up to its flagship Triton Reference speaker, one of Sound & Vision’s 2017 Top Picks of the Year.
Al Griffin  |  Nov 29, 2018  |  1 comments
Got a tech question for Sound & Vision? Email us at

Q I am planning to buy two TVs, a 65-inch LG OLED and a 49-inch Samsung LCD, both of which will be wall-mounted. I also want the option to play Blu-ray discs and DVDs with both TVs. My initial plan was to buy disc players and hide them behind the wall-mounted sets, but I can’t find a player with a vertical orientation. My goal is to see nothing but the TV on the wall. The one option I’m contemplating at this point is sticking a PlayStation 3 Super Slim game console behind the TV. Do you have any other suggestions? —Steve Knot, via email

SV Staff  |  Nov 29, 2018  |  1 comments
Twenty-two years ago this week, few people noticed an event that would forever change the course of distributed music when Germany’s Fraunhofer Institute was awarded a U.S. patent for a ground-breaking “digital encoding process” known as MPEG Audio Layer III, a.k.a. MP3.
Barb Gonzalez  |  Nov 28, 2018  |  1 comments
Although the Fire TV Cube was released by Amazon in June, it has not yet received the recognition or hype it deserves. The Cube is a cross between a smart speaker and a Fire TV media player. Like an Amazon Echo speaker, the Cube can hear commands from across the room and has a built-in speaker to play back its reply. Like a Fire TV media player, it streams from all the same apps as other Fire TV models and can play 4K HDR content.
Thomas J. Norton  |  Nov 28, 2018  |  1 comments

PRICE $5,000

Excellent resolution
Good HDR brightness
Middling black level
Limited BT.2020 and P3 color coverage
No 10-point white balance adjustment

Sony’s VPL-VW295ES isn’t significantly different than last year’s VPL-VW285ES, but it’s still a tempting entry in the limited world of affordable true 4K home projectors.

Until recently, most home 4K projectors used lower-than-4K-resolution imaging chips and employed various types of time-offset pixel shifting to display a 4K image on a screen. Such projectors are affordable and widely available, and they can be remarkably effective. True, full 4K projection, on the other hand, has remained something of a golden goose, priced out of the range of mere mortals.

Mike Mettler  |  Nov 28, 2018  |  0 comments
We got on the line with electronic music maestro Jean-Michel Jarre to discuss his adventurous new album Equinoxe Infinity, his far-reaching “multi-mono” surround sound goals, how to best harness the way music moves through space, and how he fielded a “spatial” performance suggestion from noted sci-fi author Arthur C. Clarke.