Scott Wilkinson

Scott Wilkinson  |  Feb 16, 2012  |  26 comments
Last night, I saw Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace in 3D—RealD, not Imax, which was showing Journey 2: The Mysterious Island instead. That Dwayne Johnson vehicle looks pretty bad from the trailers I've seen, but I bet the 3D is better than it is in the new Star Wars release.
Scott Wilkinson  |  Feb 15, 2012  |  8 comments
I've been seeing announcements from the pop-music industry about the discontinuation of physical media in favor of online content. What will this mean for home theater, considering the increasing bitrates for video and 7- and 11-channel audio? If we are moving toward 4K, won't we need physical media for a long time to come?

Michael Johnston

Scott Wilkinson  |  Feb 14, 2012  |  2 comments
Jason Hartlove, CEO of Nanosys, Inc., explains his company's new backlight technology for LCD TVs called quantum-dot enhancement film, or QDEF, which uses nanoparticles that emit light of different colors when exposed to blue light. The emitted colors can be tightly controlled in the manufacturing process, resulting in just about any desired RGB color gamut, including the original gamut captured and intended by movie producers. A very geeky episode!

Run Time: 1:02:53

Scott Wilkinson  |  Feb 14, 2012  |  3 comments

2D Performance
3D Performance
Price: $2,200 At A Glance: Excellent 2D and 3D performance • Inexpensive, lightweight, passive 3D glasses • Poor ergonomics

When Tom Norton reviewed the 65-inch Vizio XVT3D650SV 3D LED-edgelit LCD TV last year (see review here), he found it to be an excellent performer in most respects. However, its list price of $3,700 kept many potential buyers away—and, along with the few problems he did find, kept him from bestowing HT's Top Picks designation.

Scott Wilkinson  |  Feb 10, 2012  |  3 comments
I'm a listener from Lima, Peru, and I love your podcast. In episode 71, you said that you use hearing protection when you go to the movies or concerts. What do you use, specifically? I am very concerned about protecting my hearing, as I have a relatively low tolerance to loud sounds, compared to other people. I tend to cringe and almost feel pain when I'm in loud environments, more than anybody else. But I like music, so I bought a pair of in-ear monitors (Etymotic ER4s) some years ago. I like the isolation so much that I sometimes leave them in my ears with no music, just to hear nothing.

I recently ordered a pair of ER20 "high fidelity plugs" from Etymotic, a universal-fit, low-cost option ($12.95) that the company claims to reduce sound by approximately 20dB in all frequencies. Have you ever tried them? I have also ordered a pair of custom-fit sleeves for my ER4s from ACS Custom. (When I was in the US, I went to an audiologist for my ear-canal impressions.) Because I had my impressions taken, I can also order a pair of custom-fit plugs with filters. However, they are more expensive ($185). Do you recommend the custom-fit ones?

Marcos Murayama

Scott Wilkinson  |  Feb 08, 2012  |  20 comments
I am considering buying a Denon AVR-2112CI receiver with Bose Acoustimass 10 speakers. I chose Bose because I have a small living room (15x20 feet). I have a 46-inch Sony LCD TV, and the space to put a 5.1 speaker system is 2.5x5 feet. I've been saving for a year and cannot decide whether I should buy Bose.

I recently came across your site and found your Top Picks for A/V receivers and compact speakers. In particular, I was interested in the Pioneer VSX-1021 AVR and the Cambridge Audio Minx S215 or Definitive ProCinema 600 speaker systems because they are smaller than the Pioneer SP-BS41-LR system.

I hope you can advise me on which receiver and speaker system to get. My budget is between $1000 and $1500.


Scott Wilkinson  |  Feb 07, 2012  |  4 comments
Sean Olive, director of acoustic research at Harman International, talks about the importance of training listeners to evaluate sound systems, Harman's "How to Listen" training program that's available for free online, blind vs. sighted listening tests, Harman's Multichannel Listening Lab, the lack of meaningful speaker specifications, subjective vs. objective evaluation of room-correction systems, research into sound-quality preferences of high school and college students, answers to chat-room questions, and more.

Run Time: 45:57

Scott Wilkinson  |  Feb 07, 2012  |  0 comments
2D Performance
3D Performance
Price: $1,499 At A Glance: Among least expensive 3D projectors • Good detail and color • High black level in 2D, low brightness in 3D • No lens shift

Like it or not, 3D compatibility is becoming nearly ubiquitous in midrange to high-end flat panels and projectors. But what about those who are looking for an entry-level projector with 3D? Are they out of luck? Not according to Optoma, whose HD33 DLP projector sells for less than $1,500, making it one of the least expensive 1080p 3D projectors on the market.

Scott Wilkinson  |  Feb 06, 2012  |  7 comments
Do you have any recommended settings for the Sony KDL-46Z4100 LCD TV? I am presently using the factory default settings in the Cinema picture mode, which I'm told is the best mode to start with.

Fitz Forde