Mark Fleischmann

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Mark Fleischmann  |  Apr 06, 2018  |  5 comments
The cobbler's kids always go unshod. I know nearly as much about video as I do about audio, but for a Sound & Vision editor—even a mere Audio Editor—I have been subsisting on a shockingly old and small TV. My 10-year-old Sharp LCD set was only a 32-inch because it was originally intended to supplement a front-projection display. But since then it has become my only video display. For that and a long list of other reasons, it was due for replacement.

Mark Fleischmann  |  Apr 04, 2018  |  4 comments

Audio Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $1,300

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Modularity allows upgrades
Dirac room correction
BluOS audio streaming
Atmos 7.1.4 capable with external amplification
Minus
Only three HDMI inputs
No DTS:X (yet)
Dirac execution more complex than most auto room EQ

THE VERDICT
NAD’s modular-upgrade strategy endows V3 of the T758 with bleeding-edge room correction and audio streaming without impairing its excellent sound.

Why on earth would a magazine devoted to the latest and greatest in surround sound review a receiver that made its debut in 2011? Seven years in receiver years is—well, a lot of years. But the NAD T758 V3 is not some old wheezer on its way out. The company’s Modular Design Construction allows the addition or swapping of slide-in modules offering new connections or features. “Instead of planned obsolescence,” the company says, “we have planned evolution.”

Mark Fleischmann  |  Mar 27, 2018  |  0 comments

Reference Theater Pack
Performance
Build Quality
Value

R-8SWi Subwoofer
Performance
Features
Build Quality
Value
PRICE $999

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Klipsch’s classic horn-loaded sound at a budget price
Minus
Enclosure adds some coloration

THE VERDICT
This redesign of Klipsch’s bestselling sat/sub system makes some compromises from its predecessors—but still produces excellent sound.

Some people are just good at things. People like Rembrandt van Rijn, who could make a painted image gaze into your soul; or Meryl Streep, who can be Anna Wintour one moment and Julia Child the next; or Warren Buffett, who’s been known to make his shareholders a dollar or two; or Billie Holiday, who could sing like Louis Armstrong’s trumpet and fit a lifetime of hard loving into a single phrase.

Mark Fleischmann  |  Mar 22, 2018  |  1 comments

Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $199

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Handles PCM, DSD, and MQA natively
Second iEMatch output for IEMs
USB or battery powered
Minus
No analog line input

THE VERDICT
This full-featured budget amp/DAC can get the best out of most headphones, especially in the all-important presence region.

If you’re looking for a USB amp/DAC to juice your headphones, you might assume that a couple hundred bucks would buy nothing more than a stick amp, one of those compact dongles that extends straight out from your computer’s USB port. We live in the golden age of the stick amp, and I’m sure not knocking ’em. But what if the same money can buy something with a little more real estate for circuitry and the always vital power supply, offering better than 96-kilohertz/24-bit resolution, DSD, MQA, and two headphone outputs with different gains, one for demanding ’phones and one for more efficient ones (including in-ear monitors, aka IEMs)? Of course, you must read on.

Mark Fleischmann  |  Mar 19, 2018  |  0 comments
2017 was not a banner year for TV sales, despite growth for 4K (Ultra HD) TV and even 8K TV.
Mark Fleischmann  |  Mar 19, 2018  |  0 comments
The First 8K channel will be launched by NHK, the Japanese broadcast authority, later this year. How much programming will support it remains to be seen...

Samsung may return to OLED manufacturing, say anonymous sources quoted by a Korean-language news site. But this time it would combine the brightness of Samsung’s quantum dot with the black levels of OLED...

Mark Fleischmann  |  Mar 15, 2018  |  2 comments
The State of Washington has become the first state to pass its own full-fledged net neutrality law, grabbing the regulatory reins from the FCC, which had axed its own net neutrality rules a few months ago.
Mark Fleischmann  |  Mar 02, 2018  |  0 comments
With the death of Mark E. Smith, The Fall are no more. Britain's longest-running postpunk band burned through 66 members and recorded 31 studio albums over a four-decade span. The defining element was always Smith, who poured torrents of vituperation, fragments of wit, wry observations, and occasional startling insights into a microphone, mesmerizing multiple generations of Fall obsessives.

Mark Fleischmann  |  Feb 22, 2018  |  0 comments

Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $999

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Normal or high-gain output
Full and microSD card slots
Native 384/32 PCM and DSD support
Minus
Bulky
Not as pretty as some other A&K players
USB charger not included

THE VERDICT
Astell & Kern’s KANN is not only a subtly gorgeous-sounding performer loaded with features. It’s also a great value.

Astell & Kern’s KANN (along with the recently announced AK70 MK II) makes its debut at a time when the dedicated music player is looking more and more like the passenger pigeon. Apple has just killed the innovative, shape-shifting iPod nano and the puny iPod shuffle, leaving only the now unprecedentedly cheap iPod touch, basically an iPhone without the phone, at $199. With Apple uncharacteristically catering to the middle of the market (let’s not even contemplate the $20 nano knockoffs on Amazon), that leaves the high-resolution musicplayer carriage trade to companies like Astell & Kern, FiiO, and HiFiMan, as well as newly hi-res-conscious big brands like Sony, Onkyo, and Pioneer.

Mark Fleischmann  |  Feb 12, 2018  |  0 comments
TiVo wants the world to know that it’s more than just a pioneering DVR platform.

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