Al Griffin  |  May 11, 2020  |  4 comments
It’s not at all surprising that self-isolating citizens in the U.S. have been flocking to video streaming services in large numbers since the pandemic arrived. For example, a press release issued last week by the NPD Group, an organization that tracks consumer data, cited a “72 percent increase in the number of Netflix subscriber profiles that were used to stream video each week” following orders from states around the country telling residents to shelter at home. What is surprising is the increase we’re also seeing now in sales of Blu-ray Disc players, a product category in sharp decline after hitting its peak back in 2015.
Josef Krebs  |  May 08, 2020  |  1 comments
Around 1890, two lighthouse keepers—isolated on a remote New England island with just gulls, each other, and a large supply of liquor for company—begin to gradually lose their sense of reality, civility, and eventually their sanity in an atmospheric concoction not conveyed this intensely since The Shining. It all makes for a great (if grueling) two-handed drama.
Al Griffin  |  May 08, 2020  |  0 comments
Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE), IMAX, and DTS announced this week that SPE will release “hundreds of new titles in the IMAX format over the next two years, including all upcoming SPE and IMAX theatrical releases.” The announcement follows the expansion of IMAX Enhanced content onto multiple streaming services worldwide, including FandangoNOW here in the U.S.
Mike Mettler  |  May 07, 2020  |  40 comments
Okay, you got me. I freely admit before all my fellow music lovers and audiophiles alike that I had a very specific ulterior motive when I noted in a recent Remaster Class column that the title track to Yes' September 1972 magnum opus Close to the Edge was my "second-favorite 5.1 mix." Following my primary intention of encouraging listeners to marvel at the fully enveloping scope of that song's truly amazing surround sound mix, I figured the next thing anyone reading said comment might wonder would be along the lines of, "Yeah, cool cool cool, that's great and all—but what's No. 1?"
Bob Ankosko  |  May 07, 2020  |  0 comments
When the owner of a magnificent mansion in St. Paul, Minnesota took on a remodeling project, he had something special in mind for his office — one that brought history and modern technology together in a most impressive way.
John Sciacca  |  May 07, 2020  |  0 comments
Motorized window shades and smart lighting are a godsend for controlling light in an open, mixed-use media room. Here’s how.
Al Griffin  |  May 06, 2020  |  0 comments
Wireless multiroom speaker maker Sonos today announced Arc, a new soundbar that brings support for Dolby Atmos soundtracks. The $799 Arc slots in above the $399 Sonos Beam in the company’s soundbar lineup and will serve as a replacement for its current Playbar and Playbase offerings.

Thomas J. Norton  |  May 06, 2020  |  0 comments

PRICE $3,500

Rich, accurate color
Wide viewing angle
Outstanding HDR performance
Remote control difficult to use
Table-mount legs an optional accessory

LG’s design-savvy 65GXPUA OLED offers up a mix of features and performance that’s guaranteed to grab your attention.

LG's GX series for 2020 sits in the middle of the company's OLED TV range, just above the CX series, and right below the WX (for Wallpaper—ultra thin and designed for, you guessed it, wall mounting). But at 20mm, GX series sets are also very thin, and while they come with a wall-mounting bracket, it doesn't include legs for a table-top mount, though that option is available at a modest extra cost. The GX series has built-in Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa voice control, and it also adds a Gallery feature that can display stationary artwork surrounded by a faux frame inside its otherwise nearly invisible bezel.

John Sciacca  |  May 05, 2020  |  0 comments

PRICE $1,999

Solves major TV installation issue
Solid build quality
Out-of-the-box automation
Limited horizontal swivel range
Awkward power/cable routing
Professional installation highly recommended

The MM860 costs more than many TVs, but it solves a common installation issue, performs reliably, and looks cool.

As long as architects design houses with a fireplace as the focal point of the living/family room, people will continue to mount their TVs above the fireplace mantel. But a problem with that location is that it situates the screen too high for comfortable viewing. And even though people know that height is going to be an issue, they often have no other obvious installation choice and are consequently forced to suffer life with TVOF (TV Over Fireplace) syndrome.

Thomas J. Norton  |  May 05, 2020  |  0 comments
We have no confirmed data to show how the current coronavirus pandemic might affect the consumer electronics market. Even experts paid to research such things can only guess, but there’s little doubt it’s effect will be significant.