Michael Berk

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Michael Berk  |  Oct 11, 2012  |  0 comments

We've talked a fair amount in this space lately about how much of a difference a headphone amplifier can make in your portable listening. Whether it's correcting for out-of-whack output impedance or simply providing more juice for difficult-to-drive cans (here's looking at you, on-the-go planar magnetic fans), you can get a better experience for surprisingly little money, with a wide range of pocketable amplifiers on the market right now, ready to interface with your iDevices, Androids, and other portable media devices. Here we look at two interesting and affordable newish devices: the latest miniature amp from FiiO, the E02i, or "Rocky," and the latest incarnation of DigiZoid's unique ZO2.

Michael Berk  |  Jun 22, 2011  |  0 comments

While we have yet to see an explosion of NFC-enabled products, Nokia's brought the near-field communications protocol to a new range of home entertaiment products launching along with its much-lauded new Continue Reading >

Michael Berk  |  Feb 28, 2012  |  0 comments

When Sound+Vision looked at Klipsch's LightSpeakers in the summer of 2010, we'd hardly have guessed such devices were more than novelties. Looks like we were wrong.

Michael Berk  |  Nov 29, 2012  |  0 comments

Vacuum tube electronics may be "obsolete," but like other enduring vintage technologies (think vinyl), those glowing glass cylinders still have a place in many an audiophile heart, and lately there's been something of a rennaissance in small, affordable tube products, with old school technology finding its way into everything from headphone amp kits to do-it-all docks from major CE firms. There's a tube solution, it seems, for almost everybody.

Blue Aura's v30 Blackline system ($549) is a little different, a luxury desktop system meant to evoke the sound, look, and feel of old-school gear, but designed by a young British firm with a focus on wireless and desktop products to serve a computer-audio savvy consumer. While the amp clearly looks back, through a warm glow, to a simpler era of audio componentry, it sports a USB input too, and it's companion speakers are conveniently sized to fit alongside a computer monitor.

Does it belong on your desk?

Michael Berk  |  Mar 24, 2011  |  0 comments

Since it appeared in the seventeenth century, the guitar has been a work of visual art in its own right, as well as a powerful influence on artists in other media.

Michael Berk  |  Aug 10, 2011  |  0 comments

VUDU debuts on the iPad today, though not quite in the way you'd expect. You won't find a VUDU app in the App Store - and for good reason.

Michael Berk  |  May 03, 2012  |  0 comments

British loudspeaker firm KEF's been putting out quality designs for 50 years now, and they're showing no signs of slowing down.

Michael Berk  |  Sep 02, 2011  |  0 comments

Been lusting after a pair of KEF's cutting-edge (sorry!) Blade speakers, but don't happen to have $30,000 lying around idle? Well, those of you without Apple Computer–style cash reserves can now enjoy some of the Blade's design innovations at a much lower price point.

Michael Berk  |  Jul 11, 2012  |  0 comments

Krell is synonymous in the minds of many with high-performance audio, but they're not the first manufacturer that comes to mind when you mention DACs or headphone amps. That's about to change, perhaps, with the introduction of the Phantom III stereo preamplifier.

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