Mark Henninger

Mark Henninger  |  Sep 14, 2023  |  3 comments
Ready to discover the future of home entertainment? Dive into our in-depth analysis of CEDIA Expo 2023, where high-tech meets high performance. From in-wall speakers that redefine audio quality to colossal micro-LED video walls that are finally attainable, we've got the trends that are reshaping the industry. Plus, we explore how cutting-edge room correction tech is bringing the dream of ideal sound into every home.
Mark Henninger  |  Sep 08, 2023  |  0 comments
I'm in Denver for CEDIA 2023. So far, the show has been impressively busy, and I've heard anecdotally from numerous vendors that they are doing brisk business. Day one and day two featured jam-packed booths, and I explored the floor, but largely skipped doing the demos because they take time and the lines were long. On day one and day two, I focused on video interviews from various exhibitors that you will find here, with more to come.
Mark Henninger  |  Sep 02, 2023  |  7 comments

Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $3,300

AT A GLANCE
Plus
One of the brightest TVs you can buy
Deep gaming functionality
Relatively wide viewing angles
Mounts flat on a wall
Excellent cable management
Minus
65" model is pricey
Still no Dolby Vision
Quantum-dot OLED has its own charms

THE VERDICT
This sublime ultra-premium multi-use 4K TV has a modern minimalist design and delivers impressive imagery thanks to the use of mini-LED, quantum dots and advanced picture processing. Its premium performance comes at a price but it delivers the goods when it comes to image fidelity.

For the past ten years we've watched 4K LCD and OLED TVs compete in the wake of plasma's demise. There was the death of 3D. And for a while, we even had curved screens to contend with. At first OLED had a distinct picture quality advantage over LCDs, thanks to its use of emissive pixels that can fully shut off individually and deliver true blacks. However LED-lit LCD keeps evolving and keeping pace while offering a different set of benefits.

Samsung's name for mini-LED FALD LCD panels featuring quantum dots is Neo QLED. And the QN95C is king of the 4K Neo QLEDs.

Mark Henninger  |  Aug 31, 2023  |  0 comments
The XGIMI Horizon Ultra ($1,699) is a bold new projector that aims to topple the Sony and JVC home theater hegemony with a device that costs a lot less than those offerings yet offers compelling image quality. It is also a milestone in long-throw projection technology because it is the first such projector to support Dolby Vision.
Mark Henninger  |  Aug 16, 2023  |  1 comments

Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $650

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Works upright and on its side
Omnidirectional sound
25 hour battery life
Light show & karaoke
Charge other devices using its battery
Minus
Poorly designed wheels and handle

THE VERDICT
Sony's party speaker impresses with its sound quality and features but its wheels and handle make it difficult to move around.

Is there room for a party speaker in your life? How about this question instead: do you like to have fun? If so, then the answer is yes! This sometimes scorned category stands out in my experience because in recent years, whenever I see people having a good time with music, more often than not it's been some sort of lifestyle, entertainment-friendly, wireless, portable speaker dishing out the tunes. A party speaker.

Mark Henninger  |  Aug 14, 2023  |  2 comments
At Audio Advice Live 2023, the regional AV show held last week in Raleigh, North Carolina, I encountered a unique application for UST (ultra short throw) projectors I had never seen before. As a gamer who enjoys racing and flight simulators, this demonstration resonated with me as much as the massive 9.4.4 or 9.4.6 Atmos home theater systems also found at the show.
Mark Henninger  |  Aug 13, 2023  |  0 comments
Large, powered, wireless party speakers have been around for some time, but 2023 marked the first year I truly took notice. I recently reviewed a Sony party speaker, and this year seems to indeed be the year of the party speaker. At Audio Advice Live in Raleigh, North Carolina, I entered a room in the Sheraton and instead of the typical two-channel high-end system or home theater setups, what I found was a dance floor just waiting for a party to get started. This included disco lights, a DJ rig, and a pair of full-size JBL Partybox 710 speakers handling the PA duties.
Mark Henninger  |  Aug 12, 2023  |  0 comments
Bowers & Wilkins had three separate demo experiences at Audio Advice Live 2023. The company exhibited its 801 D3 flagship loudspeakers, powered by Classé electronics, as well as 700 series S3 speakers; a demo of great relevance to me since I have 700 series speakers in for review. And a powerhouse home theater performance with Marantz handling power and processing.
Mark Henninger  |  Aug 12, 2023  |  3 comments
I attended two separate Macintosh demos at Audio Advice Live 2023. They were strikingly different. One was the classic two-channel demo, in this case using new Macintosh equipment that has the classic build quality and aesthetic. The highlight of that demo? Trying to figure out the mysteries of tube sound.

But the other demo also got my attention because it is automotive. The Jeep Grand Wagoneer McIntosh demo—held in front of the hotel—featured an in-cabin entertainment system that is about as over-the-top as any OEM system I've seen or heard in a motor vehicle.

Mark Henninger  |  Aug 12, 2023  |  0 comments
I love a great 2.1 system like this pair of Solano tower speaker and a Varro DS1000 12-inch dual-opposed subwoofer. Just a couple of good towers and a powerful, precise sub, along with transparent, competent electronics doing their job. And that's what I found in this all-ELAC rig at Audio Advice Live 2023.

What a fantastic time it is to be an audio enthusiast, that we have this capacity to create true full-range audio delivering an audiophile listing experience with gear that looks great and fits comfortably in a living room environment.

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