Mark Fleischmann

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Mark Fleischmann  |  Sep 23, 2010  |  0 comments
Which would you rather have, a budget receiver with networking features for $500, or one without them for $400? We ran a picture of the second one, the RD-705, just to mess with you a little, but the correct answer is the first one, namely the RD-705i. It has DLNA certification to pull media off your router-connected PC's hard drive and also supports Bluetooth with an adapter and wi-fi with an adapter. For your subscription music fix there's Rhapsody and for your internet radio fix there's Pandora and SHOUTcast. Auto setup is Sherwood's proprietary SNAP, not the higher-end Trinnov it's licensed for a higher-end model. HDMI connectivity is 1.4a, not 1.4 as the literature says.
Mark Fleischmann  |  Apr 11, 2011  |  0 comments
Price: $600 At A Glance: Slim A/V receiver with energy-saving Class D amplification • Variety of streaming content via VuNow and PlayOn • Dolby Volume low-volume listening mode

Internet in a Boxx

As networked media features steadily infiltrate HDTVs, Blu-ray players, set-top boxes, and other audio/video products, streaming may be upstaging 3D as the must-have technology. The question is how to get streaming into your system. Do you want your choice of HDTV to hinge on streaming features—as opposed to, say, picture quality? While that may be the ideal solution for some, others will seek ways of smuggling streaming into their racks via smaller purchases such as Blu-ray players, set-top boxes—or A/V receivers, like the Sherwood R-904N NetBoxx. At $650, it delivers a huge array of networked media features for a nice price.

Mark Fleischmann  |  May 03, 2013  |  0 comments
Audio Performance
Video Performance
Price: $1,000 At A Glance: Built-in Wi-Fi • Bluetooth with supplied dongle • Rudimentary room EQ

Sherwood can fairly lay claim to a slice of audio history. Born in Chicago in 1953, it was one of the great American brands of home audio’s infancy. Its vintage tube amps still sell on eBay as affordable alternatives to more sought-after brands like McIntosh and Marantz; some folks make a hobby of refurbishing them. Its early solid-state stereo receivers also have a modest following.

Mark Fleischmann  |  Jun 29, 2009  |  0 comments
Price: $440 At A Glance: Lossless surround at a new low price point • Optional accessories provide Bluetooth and iPod compatibility • Decent performance for the price

Low-Rent Audiophile Model

In A/V receivers, as in so many other things, new technologies start in mid- to high-priced models and work their way down. Once they have fully penetrated all or most of a manufacturer’s line, consumers who are on a budget have the same access to, say, lossless surround that more upscale buyers do. Then we at Home Theater uncork bottle after bottle of champagne in wild celebration, peel grapes for one another, run up and down the hallway, and don’t get much done for a few days.

Mark Fleischmann  |  Jan 07, 2008  |  4 comments
Trinnov is the name of the new auto setup and calibration system just added to the year-old Sherwood R-972 receiver ($1799). The SMPTE cinema standard is built into it. You can even transfer the SMPTE settings from receiver to USB to PC, log onto the SMPTE website, and analyze the settings. Sherwood also showed a surround-savvy stereo receiver, the RX-4203 ($199) with Dolby Virtual Speaker, Dolby Headphone, and an input that accepts a Bluetooth receiver, just in case you get the impulse to play music from your cell phone.
Mark Fleischmann  |  Jan 11, 2007  |  644 comments
Only the latest version of the HDMI interface, 1.3, will carry DTS-HD Master Audio, though 1.2 and 1.1 will do for DTS-HD High Resolution Audio, not to mention Dolby TrueHD and Dolby Digital Plus. Sherwood receiver model R-872 ($999) is the lowest-priced one with the full monty. Also fully qualified to be your man is the R-972 ($1499).
Mark Fleischmann  |  Jan 10, 2013  |  0 comments
There weren't many surround receivers on the floor of the Las Vegas Convention Center, but Sherwood was a hardy exception, showing a half-dozen new ones shipping between April and May. The top-line model is the R-977 with a rated 145 watts times seven into six ohms. It features Anchor Bay video processing, internet radio with vTuner, DLNA, direct USB connection of iOS devices, and a phono input. Perhaps more interesting is what's missing: Sherwood is no longer the lone receiver brand supporting innovative Trinnov room correction, a prominent feature of the old (and more costly) R-972. Instead it is relying on the proprietary SNAP room correction that it has also used previously. Price is $1000. At the opposite end of the line is the 5.1-channel RD-5405, selling for a mere $170.
Mark Fleischmann  |  Sep 16, 2006  |  1 comments
Frank Göbl of Canton and Steven Stone of our sister publication UltimateAV were the best-shod men on the floor. I think Steven (left) has the advantage here.
Mark Fleischmann  |  Jan 23, 2008  |  3 comments
Abandonment by Warner and Fox has left HD DVD with shrinking support among the motion picture studios. If HD DVD survives at all, it will have to do so with little or eventually no major-studio support. So maybe this is the time to ask a potentially controversial question: Does HD DVD have a future as a niche format--or possibly even an outlaw format? The following suggestions range from possible to distasteful to downright illegal. But since the future of a promising young format is at stake, let's think, um, creatively.
Mark Fleischmann  |  Jan 30, 2007  |  0 comments
Somewhere over the rainbow there's an iPod color we haven't seen before. It's orange. And it's one of four new Apple iPod shuffle color options. The others are already familiar to second-generation nano enthusiasts. They include pink, lime, sky blue, and "silver." Cue Jerry Seinfeld voice: Have you ever noticed that manufacturers say silver when they really mean aluminum or grey? What's up with that? If I can't melt it down and make jewelry out of it, it's not really silver, is it? Noticeably absent is the red used for special-edition nanos. And if you've been holding out for yellow or, ah, "gold," keep dreaming. Capacity remains one gigabyte, price is still $79, and earbuds have been upgraded to the new and supposedly better-sounding ones. Me, I've still got a first-generation nano that's in good health, thank you. But if you're a completist, don't let that stop you from grabbing that new orange shuffle. Mind if I borrow it for a day or two?