Mark Fleischmann

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Mark Fleischmann  |  May 20, 2007  |  Published: Apr 20, 2007  |  0 comments
High-end sensibility in a box.

There are two ways to look at compact home theater—a.k.a. in-a-box—systems. The dominant, mass-market HTIBs are a step down in cost and performance for those who are content to pay less and get less. If the system comes with fewer distracting bells and whistles, so much the better. But there is another, less explored, higher-end vision for compact home theater. It uses compactness to pursue a vigorous uncluttering of the home theater experience while maintaining high performance. The aim is a kind of sleek austerity, not deprivation, and people who want it are willing to pay for it. They might even influence people around them—suggesting by example that a home theater system can be simple, elegant, and a treat for the ears. Perhaps that's what Naim Audio was thinking when they named this system the n-Vi. I'll spare you the puns.

Mark Fleischmann  |  May 18, 2007  |  0 comments
At the root of recent woes in the TV-retailing business is the legendary "Wal-Mart effect," according to a news analysis by Business Week.
Mark Fleischmann  |  May 17, 2007  |  0 comments
Copying music or movies? Don't even think about it, says attorney general Alberto Gonzales. He's supporting a new law that would make even attempting copyright infringement a new federal offense.
Mark Fleischmann  |  May 16, 2007  |  0 comments
One of the cool things about digital television is the potential for creativity on the subchannels. Case in point: The Tube. It's carried in many markets by DTV stations owned by Raycom, Sinclair, Tribune, and others; and by Comcast, Time Warner, and other cable systems. The independently owned channel delivers nonstop rock and pop music videos with minimal channel IDs and no commercials. Programming races back and forth in time, from the 1960s to the present, mixing raw live footage with conventional promo music videos. Some items in heavy rotation are surprising--I would never have gone out of my way to add Queen concerts to my DVD stash, but wow, Freddie rocks! My only complaint is that heavy audio compression results in harsh, grainy sound with virtually no dynamic range. Even so, it's a great place to surf during commercial breaks on other channels, and repays longer spells of attention with a wide and ever-changing array of music. Check the Wiki to see if The Tube is available in your area. The channel also has an official site, an unofficial site, and a myspace presence.
Mark Fleischmann  |  May 15, 2007  |  0 comments
How would you feel about your video-on-demand service if you discovered the fast-forward function had been disabled? Viewers of the country's third-largest cable system will soon find out when they try in vain to skip ads on the VOD versions of ABC and ESPN.
Mark Fleischmann  |  May 14, 2007  |  0 comments
Want your next PC to handle both Blu-ray and HD DVD? Both high-def disc formats will be accommodated in select build-to-order models from Hewlett-Packard.
Mark Fleischmann  |  May 13, 2007  |  2 comments
The MI6 is Britain's equivalent of the CIA. The M16, on the other hand, is a floorstanding speaker from Epos that will sell for $1600/pair. An M8 center will be available for $600, an M SUB will complete the system, and of course you're at liberty to use any of the company's sterling monitors as surrounds.
Mark Fleischmann  |  May 13, 2007  |  0 comments
Surround electronics were thin on the ground at HES but Krell did display the S-1000 pre-pro ($6500) and S-1500 multi-channel amp. The latter can operate with five, six, or seven channels and sells for $6000-7000 depending on configuration. Both shipping now. Krell also showed an iPod dock.
Mark Fleischmann  |  May 13, 2007  |  0 comments
Would you like to base your surround system on a pair of slim towers, like the Silverline Preludes, at $1200/pair? Or would you prefer something smaller like the Minuet, at $600/pair? In either case, you can buy them one by one and please yourself. The Chinese silk dome tweeters kept cymbals from getting spitty and the 3.5-inch paper midwoofers mustered a surprisingly well-proportioned and tuneful string bass.
Mark Fleischmann  |  May 13, 2007  |  0 comments
The soundmatters SLIMstage40 packs 170 watts from eight amplifiers into a 39-inch-long bar that sits below a video display. At $899, this speaker bar may be the simulated-surround solution for you. For more bass, check out the low-profile SUBstage200 ($399) or basketball-size SUBstage250Cube ($449).