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John Sciacca Posted: Sep 04, 2014 0 comments
Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $568 and up ($967 as tested)

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Fast and simple setup
Long transmission range
Zero detectable latency
Minus
Optical input doesn’t support Dolby or DTS bitstreams

THE VERDICT
XStream works exactly as promised, beaming audio around the home with little effort. Easily integrates with existing audio distribution systems or functions standalone.

Thanks to companies like Sonos and Bluesound, wireless audio distribution systems are gaining real traction in the marketplace. And if you’re starting from ground zero, these can be terrific options for sending music around an existing home.

But what if you have an existing audio system you want to expand on? Say an older Elan, Niles, or Russound housewide system that’s feeding multiple rooms that you want to add to? Or if you purchased a multi-zone A/V receiver and want to add music to a far bedroom or porch? Or maybe you just want to add some surround channels to the back of a room or new Dolby Atmos speakers that wouldn’t be possible or cost effective to do with traditional wiring? If any of those sounds like you, Russound’s new XStream X1 wireless audio system might be the perfect solution.

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John Sciacca Posted: Oct 14, 2015 0 comments
Russound expands its XStream whole-house wireless audio systems with the introduction of the XZone4 four-stream/four-zone audio system, XSource streaming audio player, and XTS color in-wall touchscreen controller. All of these new components are designed to expand the capabilities of Russound’s XStream wireless audio systems.

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John Sciacca Posted: Feb 05, 2008 0 comments

A computer in the living room? Madness! Computers are big and noisy. They aren't reliable, they aren't remote-controllable, and they can't even handle high-def. Keep them the hell away from my media room!

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John Sciacca Posted: Sep 04, 2008 0 comments

Remember not too long ago we had a little format war between HD-DVD and Blu-ray? Whether you think Blu-ray won or HD-DVD just lost, the result was that one format knew when it was time to take their ball and go home.

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John Sciacca Posted: May 05, 2006 0 comments
The Short Form
$499 / 2 x 10.6 W x 9.5 IN (LCD closed) / 5 lbs / samsung.com / 800-726-7864
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John Sciacca Posted: Mar 15, 2005 0 comments

Confession: I don't own an iPod. I don't even really want an iPod. I know they're cool and store gazillions of songs, but somehow I've avoided falling under the spell. The only portable I've ever owned - and loved - was a Sony Walkman. Not being a big fan of "portables," I didn't think I'd ever give my heart to another.

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John Sciacca Posted: Jan 06, 2015 0 comments
While the company teased the launch of its new app at CEDIA this past September, the new Savant app is now fully released and they’re real and they’re spectacular! Savant has always been known for a system that utilizes gorgeous graphics and the new app definitely doesn’t disappoint in this regard. Beyond just being a pretty face, the new app places a level of personalization, power and adjustment into the hands of the end-user like never before.

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John Sciacca Posted: Jan 06, 2016 0 comments
There were no shortage of smart locks on display at CES, but the one that truly takes security to the next level is SecuRAM’s Genesis. Not only does the lock have an incredibly high-end, solid and luxurious look, it uses state of the art biometric technology to “analyze the vascular pattern below the epidermal layer of your finger to authenticate.”

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John Sciacca Posted: Jan 08, 2016 0 comments
Resolution is everything when it comes to a surveillance system, and each extra pixel can be the difference between positively identifying a bad guy and just being able to say, “Yep, we got robbed.” Swann is upping the DIY surveillance game with an upcoming everything-you-need-in-a-box surveillance system that will include four Ultra High Def 4K cameras and a 2 Terabyte NVR giving you more than 8 million per camera, all dedicated to keeping an eye on your stuff.

John Sciacca Posted: Nov 17, 2010 0 comments

At this year’s CEDIA Expo, held in Atlanta at the end of September, I felt that the mood on the show floor was decidedly upbeat. The positive vibe exuded by many suggested that the worst of the recession is over and that business is actually starting to pick back up.

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