Howard Kneller  |  May 04, 2022  |  0 comments
KEF’s April 30, 2022 “An Evening with Satchmo” event, featuring special guest Grammy winner Ricky Ricciardi, Director of Research Collections at the Louis Armstrong House Museum and Archives, marked the first time that I wore a suit since the pandemic’s start. Although the manufacturer events that I’ve recently attended have each raised the bar on luxury, this one promised to significantly up the ante. It featured not only a semi-formal dress code, but high-end food and spirits and Louis Armstrong music and video clips in an elegant setting—KEF’s Marlboro, New Jersey Music Lounge, which the company describes as an “idea, training, and experience center” that’s physically attached to its U.S. corporate headquarters.
Mike Mettler  |  May 03, 2022  |  1 comments
Streaming giant Tidal continues upping its sound quality game. But can the company stem the tide of its many hi-res challengers? Mike Mettler takes the streaming service for a spin to find out.
Bob Ankosko  |  May 02, 2022  |  0 comments
Denon has simplified setup of its latest soundbar by building the “subwoofer” into the bottom of its enclosure, forgoing the need for a separate bass module.
Chris Chiarella  |  Apr 29, 2022  |  1 comments
Let's get right to the point: This new RoboCop boxed set gets my highest recommendation. For starters, director Paul Verhoeven's cheeky tale of a crimefighting cyborg is still thrilling, still funny, and still uniquely satisfying.
Mike Mettler  |  Apr 29, 2022  |  1 comments
Spoiler alert: Rush’s February 1981 masterpiece, Moving Pictures, is my personal No. 1 favorite album of all time, so I was very much looking forward to hearing the entire album in its full glory in Atmos. Interestingly, stellar Atmos mixes of two great Pictures tracks, “Tom Sawyer” and “Limelight,” were released last year on Apple Music in anticipation of celebrating the album’s 40th anniversary, but the balance of its seven tracks were held back until now, mostly due to supply-chain issues in order to align with the physical release of the Moving Pictures Super Deluxe Edition box set that finally came to market earlier this month—a mondo-disc collection that features a 24-bit/96kHz Atmos mix of the entire album on its included Blu-ray.
Bob Ankosko  |  Apr 28, 2022  |  0 comments
As April winds to a close, we review our Top Picks for the month, which include a budget soundbar system from a well-known American speaker brand, a top performing integrated amplifier, and the latest THX-certified subwoofer from an accessory-turned-audio-brand that’s growing by leaps and bounds.
Howard Kneller  |  Apr 27, 2022  |  0 comments

PRICE $2,548 (as tested)

Stellar performance
Powerful internal amplifier
Modular design accommodates updates and additional features
Modestly built chassis
Small front-panel display
Uninspired remote control

The C 399 delivers great performance, impressive features and flexibility, and high value in a modest, yet handsome package.

While waiting on the arrival of NAD's C 399 integrated amplifier for review, I checked it out on the company's website. What I saw there was a minimally adorned exemplar of the black-box design school, with steel chassis panels of ordinary fabrication and a small display showing mostly monochrome text. Yawn. Well, a funny thing happened when the C 399 finally arrived, and I unboxed it. I took a shine to its no-frills, understatedly handsome looks. Sure, there are more striking-looking components out there with more robust build quality, but they'll cost you.

Al Griffin  |  Apr 26, 2022  |  0 comments
Sony is stepping up its home theater projector game with the launch of three models, all packing native 4K SXRD (LCOS) display chips driven by a laser phosphor light engine. The new additions to the company’s projector lineup range in price from $6,000 to $28,000 and start shipping in May.
Thomas J. Norton  |  Apr 26, 2022  |  2 comments
Audiophiles have an inherent advantage over home theater enthusiasts: when it comes to setting up their systems, they need only make room for two loudspeakers plus a convenient location for the sources and amplifiers needed to drive them. For a home theater we need to find space for more, often much more. Those multiple speakers must also support the screen, and often there isn't much flexibility in where to put the latter—be it a TV or a projector with a separate screen. In any home theater setup the locations for the center, surrounds, and perhaps overhead speakers are then usually fixed by the placement of those front speakers and the main listener/viewer positions, with little room for deviations in a proper setup.

But positioning one or more subwoofers for the best results is a chore that takes time and patience. Subwoofers are relatively rare in 2-channel systems, which is unfortunate because they can achieve soul-satisfying bass while limiting the need for hulking, and expensive, front left and right loudspeakers.

Bob Ankosko  |  Apr 25, 2022  |  3 comments
The letters SVS immediately conjure images of subwoofers and home theater speakers but the Ohio-based company also offers a growing line of SoundPath accessories that has been expanded yet again, this time to include sensibly priced optical digital and balanced XLR audio cables.