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John Sciacca Posted: Apr 20, 2010 0 comments

What constitutes "green"? Shipping items in smaller packaging that uses less material or has been recycled from other packages? Being in compliance with RoHS (Reduction of Hazardous Substances)? Owning Energy Star-rated electronics that draw less "vampire power" when off?

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John Sciacca Posted: Sep 15, 2014 1 comments
Starting this November, the new Home Entertainment Motion Controller (HEMC) from D-BOX will bring the company’s advanced motion coding experience to far more than just movies on Blu-ray and DVD disc. D-BOX will now be delivering its proprietary excitement of the fourth dimension of motion from any source, including movies streamed from services like Netflix, Vudu, and Apple TV and even from movies viewed on cable and satellite.

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John Sciacca Posted: Jan 10, 2014 Published: Jan 11, 2014 0 comments
If you thought that 4K images were the height of pristine image quality without any room for improvement, then you needed to stop by DarbeeVision’s suite in the LVH and experience what 4K images look like when processed with Darbee Visual Presence DVP processing!

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John Sciacca Posted: Jan 09, 2016 2 comments
Sure, you might think that 8 million pixels of glorious UHD, 4K video would be the height of pristine image quality on its own without any room or need for improvement, but DarbeeVision would beg to differ. At CES the company demonstrated the improvement that could be had when true 4K images are processed and enhanced with the company’s proprietary Visual Presence DVP processing.

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John Sciacca Posted: Jan 10, 2014 Published: Jan 11, 2014 1 comments
DarbeeVision, manufacturer of the Darblet and the company behind Darbee Visual Presence DVP video enhancement processing, demonstrated the DVP-5100CIE (Custom Installer Edition) which was manufactured with direct input from custom installers. The product features the same terrific depth and clarity processing found in the Oppo BDP-103D and Lumagen Radiance video processor.

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John Sciacca Posted: Oct 26, 2016 3 comments
For many, going out to the movies is the perfect excuse to escape from the house. Get away from the kids. Unwind from work. Enjoy a date night. Whatever. Many people love the shared, communal experience of the local Cineplex. And, for the longest time, that has been the only way for law abiding, non-Hollywood types to watch a first room movie without waiting months for it to release to the home market whether on disc, on demand rental, or streaming.

But what if there were a way to watch movies at home, day-and-date when they were released in the theater? Would this be worth something to you? And if so, how much…?

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John Sciacca Posted: Jan 08, 2016 0 comments
Definitive Technology and Polk Audio demonstrated for the first time the capability of its soundbars pairing with smaller, wireless speakers to form a true 5.1-channel wireless surround system. While company representatives would not confirm the technology being used, one could infer that since all of the speakers involved were from the PlayFi wireless ecosystem, and since one of the recent PlayFi updates enabled the possibility of adding surround speakers, that PlayFi was the underlying wireless technology at play.
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John Sciacca Posted: Feb 17, 2016 2 comments

Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $899

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Ultra-thin form factor
Triple-threat with movies, music, and wholehouse audio
Great sound
Minus
Awkward handling of network media

THE VERDICT
The W Studio Micro’s strong performance and tons of streaming music features make it an easy recommendation.

The soundbar is one of the fastest-growing market segments in recent years, and that’s no surprise. As consumer demand grows for ultra-thin TVs with virtually zero bezel, display manufacturers are in the quandary of where to put the built-in speakers. The answer for most has been placing shallow speakers behind the screen, firing away from listeners. Obviously, these sonic compromises make it increasingly difficult to understand dialogue— let alone actually enjoy the wider dynamics of movies or music— and the simple solution is adding a soundbar.

John Sciacca Posted: Mar 13, 2015 1 comments

W Studio Soundbar System
Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
W9 Wireless Speaker
Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
W7 Wireless Speaker
Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
W Amp Amplifier
Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $3,295 as reviewed

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Stellar audio quality
Sleek-looking components

Minus
Android app is pretty basic
iOS app very limited
Doesn’t currently support true high-res listening

THE VERDICT
The speakers sound amazing and the W Studio soundbar is a home run even without its multiroom capabilities, but the limited Play-Fi app for streaming leaves Def Tech’s W system lagging behind the best multiroom systems.

For a while, audio manufacturers seemed resigned to give it the ol’ “lie back and think of England” routine when it came to accepting Sonos as the dominant force in the wireless audio world. Sure, they might not have liked it, but they weren’t offering any compelling alternatives of their own. And while there had been some challengers in the past, most fell well short of the Sonos benchmark and quickly faded.

This tide has changed lately, however, and the war for wireless audio is heating up. Multiple systems are now offering their spin on wireless music distribution and hoping to take a bite out of the Wi-Fi audio pie. And unlike past attempts, several of these new solutions are not only good, they’re great. Darryl Wilkinson recently reviewed two top rivals for Sonos’ throne, Bluesound (S&V, June 2014) and Denon’s HEOS (S&V, January 2015). Now, well-regarded speaker manufacturer Definitive Technology is throwing its hat into the ring by embracing Play-Fi in its new Wireless Collection.

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John Sciacca Posted: Nov 09, 2016 1 comments
I was stunned when in August I learned movie server pioneer, Kaleidescape, had closed its doors. The company remained closed for nearly three weeks—though it continued delivering movies via its movie store and systems in the field remained fully operational—before securing new funding and resuming operations.

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