Mark Fleischmann

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Mark Fleischmann  |  May 12, 2008  |  0 comments
Sony has bought Indianapolis-based Gracenote for $260 million. Why should you care?
Mark Fleischmann  |  Feb 14, 2017  |  0 comments

Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $1,000

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Small-footprint amp and speakers
Streaming app
Hi-res capable
Minus
No analog line input
No S/PDIF input
No sub output

THE VERDICT
The Sony CAS-1 is a sleek and simple desktop system, optimized for input from computers and mobile devices, with sweetly addictive near-field imaging.

It’s been 21 years since the MP3 audio file format made its debut, 17 years since Napster revolutionized the distribution of digital music, 15 years since the iPod brought that music to a pocketable device, and 13 years since Apple made downloads legit with the iTunes music store. Computerized audio is now enjoying a vigorous middle age—old enough to support lots of audio products and system configurations, young enough for some of those products to be innovative. Outfitting your desktop with an audio system can cost as little as $13.99 for a pair of AmazonBasics powered speakers or as much as several thousand dollars for the highest-end speakers and integrated amps recommended by our sister site AudioStream.com.

Mark Fleischmann  |  Jun 15, 2006  |  0 comments
Your DVD collection flies first class.

Why pay $1,300 for a DVD player when you can get one for $100? You might as well ask, why fly first class when you can fly coach? Membership in the club of videophiles has its privileges. There will always be people who can afford to pay extra for tangible benefits, like top picture and sound quality, and intangible ones, like pride of ownership.

Mark Fleischmann  |  Mar 10, 2011  |  0 comments
Though disc releases are festooned with special features, movies sold as downloads tend to be unadorned. However, Sony Pictures is beginning to add features to movies sold as downloads through iTunes.

You'll be able to search for actors and dialogue, choose clips to share on social networking sites, and find songs embedded in soundtracks. Not surprisingly, the latter will be linked for purchase in the iTunes music store.

Mark Fleischmann  |  Sep 03, 2008  |  0 comments
Sony shattered the quasi-content-free tradition of pre-CEDIA press events with an awesome exhibition of exhibitionist tendencies. The Bravia Internet Link will host the premiere of the blockbuster Sony Pictures film Hancock with Will Smith and Charlize Theron. The Blu-ray release of same will have Digital Copy. Wait, there's more. Sony attacks lazy liquid crystals with 240Hz Motionflow, which quadruples the refresh rate and interpolates three new frames. Blu-ray has gone from 18 to 32 manufacturers in a year, including Sony of course, which will bow the BDP-S5000ES (pictured) in November for $2000. It has an HD Reality Processor that selectively enhances sharpness in areas of the picture that need it -- not unlike what Toshiba is doing. With rigid frame & beam construction and isolated circuits, this will be the Blu player to beat. Oh, and when the floor opens tomorrow, Sony will be showing a prototype of a 400-disc BD mega-changer to make its debut in 2009. Two new ES receivers will have Faroudja video processing. SACD not dead, judging from intro of XA5400ES player. Huff, puff. If other manufacturers have this much news, I'll be dead by the end of the show.
Mark Fleischmann  |  Dec 20, 2007  |  0 comments
Sony has become the latest manufacturer to dump its rear-projection television line.
Mark Fleischmann  |  Jan 08, 2007  |  1 comments
Pre-CES press events are notorious for emphasizing message over substance. Sony's message was "Transformation." Nevertheless everyone's favorite electronics giant and whipping boy had a few surprises in store at yesterday's big do, and the first was violinist (and Sony Classical recording artist) Joshua Bell in a huge display of virtuosity. It got CES off to a great start! Sorry about the picture. It hardly does justice to Sony's 1080p Bravia LCD display. What do you expect from a Panasonic camera being operated by a monkey?
Mark Fleischmann  |  Apr 25, 2014  |  2 comments

Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $999

AT A GLANCE
Plus
500-GB hard drive
DSD capable
Serious fun to use
Minus
No live streaming from network devices
Lightweight amp

THE VERDICT
This handsome DSD-capable audio player with built-in storage takes the pesky computer out of computer audio—and it’s way more fun to use.

Sony made waves when they announced their intention to market three high-resolution audio (HRA) products built around the company’s DSD file format. True, there was a nascent HRA movement before Sony made the move, with loads of network audio players and USB DACs flooding the market. But somehow the Sony announcement provided the extra momentum that finally made HRA seem not just promising but inevitable. That the Consumer Electronics Association has also launched an HRA initiative is icing on the cake.

Mark Fleischmann  |  Jan 07, 2011  |  0 comments
An intriguing part of Sony's enormous booth in the Central Hall discussed the "Monolithic Design" philosophy, which gives Sony Bravia TVs a commanding "on/off presence" -- in other words, they look cool whether the screen is active or dark. One aspect of the philosophy in action is a six-degree tilt that suits "low, contemporary furniture."
Mark Fleischmann  |  Jul 09, 2010  |  0 comments
Sony is about to launch two movie channels. One, Sony Pictures Movies HD, would be the first channel completely under Sony ownership. The other, FearNet, is a joint venture with Lionsgate and Comcast.

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