Bob Ankosko

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Bob Ankosko  |  Jan 04, 2018  |  3 comments
15 Minutes with Astra Insights’ Shawn DuBravac

Stop for a moment and think back to home entertainment 10 years ago. You were starting to build a library of Blu-ray titles, thankful that HD had finally made its way to disc, but 4K at home was a technology of the future and streaming was still a curiosity. Netflix was a hugely successful DVD mail-order company with a billion discs delivered but could see the writing on the wall when it started offering movies on demand over the internet in February 2007. Today, streaming is commonplace and home audio and video have reached unprecedented levels of quality, raising the question of what comes next? Looking ahead to the future, we reached out to Dr. Shawn DuBravac, founder of the Washington, DC-based consultancy Astra Insights, former chief economist for the Consumer Technology Association, and author of the New York Times Best Seller (Regnery, 2015). A well-regarded futurist and trendcaster, DuBravac writes frequently about technology with a focus on deciphering disruptive shifts.

Bob Ankosko  |  Dec 27, 2017  |  0 comments
Performance
Features
Build Quality
Value
PRICE $799

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Solid build quality
Handsome fit and finish
Easy setup
Good overall sound quality with bountiful bass
Minus
No Wi-Fi streaming
No tone controls
Disappointing phono preamp

THE VERDICT
Klipsch’s beautifully crafted Sixes deliver fine sound with the bonus of onboard power, but vinyl playback is shortchanged by its pedestrian phono preamp.

I’ve been talking about pulling my old turntable out of mothballs since I moved to my current home, oh…20 years ago. Which is why I jumped at the chance when asked if I had any interest in auditioning The Sixes, the latest entry in Klipsch’s Heritage Wireless series and big brother to The Three, the superb all-in-one wireless music system we reviewed in May. I know what you’re thinking: What does reviewing speakers have to do with setting up a turntable? Bear with me.

Bob Ankosko  |  Nov 22, 2017  |  0 comments
15 Minutes with Origin Acoustics CEO Jeremy Burkhardt

Spend a few minutes on Jeremy Burkhardt’s LinkedIn page and you quickly gain an appreciation of his passion for custom installation and desire to create products that simplify installation and push the boundaries of performance — to “innovate,” as he would say. You also find an executive who is anything but your typical corporate CEO — a man who talks about breaking “all the corporate rules” in describing his work history as CEO for SpeakerCraft, the pioneering custom-installation company he helped build before leaving in 2012. Today, Burkhardt is at the helm of Origin Acoustics, the architectural speaker company he founded in 2014, and his desire for innovation is as strong as ever. Origin was the talk of CEDIA 2017 with the launch of its Valet amplifier, which provides an ingenious way to integrate voice control into a whole-house music system. We caught up with Burkhardt to learn more about the system and get his take on the future of voice control.

Bob Ankosko  |  Nov 14, 2017  |  1 comments
You’ve gotta hand it to the design team at Denmark’s Bang & Olufsen. Always super creative and always thinking outside the box—the speaker box, in this case. What could easily be mistaken for wall art or a serious acoustic diffuser is a unique modular speaker system. Indeed, the BeoSound Shape is the only wireless speaker system we know of that is modular and customizable in terms of performance and aesthetics. In other words, it’s ridiculously flexible.
Bob Ankosko  |  Oct 12, 2017  |  1 comments
Do you feel like you’re back in the ’70s, when vinyl ruled and fashion was…well, let’s just say, questionable?

There’s a good reason for that: Tannoy’s new Legacy Series is based on the popular High Powered Dual (HPD) Series released in 1974, the year after Pink Floyd mixed The Dark Side of the Moon at London’s legendary Abbey Road Studios on a pair of newly installed Tannoy Lancaster monitors.

Bob Ankosko  |  Oct 11, 2017  |  0 comments
Audio Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $200

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Multiple streaming options via Wi-Fi and Bluetooth
Chromecast built-in
Remote control
Minus
Lackluster sound quality

THE VERDICT
The Mondo+ is a versatile internet radio that offers easy access to a multitude of streaming sources, but we expected better sound quality for the price.

My first thought was “clock radio” as I lifted the Mondo+ out of its box. It’s tough to gauge the heft of a product from a picture, so I guess I was expecting something a bit more substantial. Even so, the plastic-encased Mondo+ is nice and compact—about the size of a loaf of bread—and attractive with a smooth gray finish and large color display that serves as a gateway to wireless streaming options and system settings, including—you guessed it—an alarm clock.

Bob Ankosko  |  Sep 20, 2017  |  0 comments
I’ve been a hard-core Beatles fan for…well, let’s just say a very long time. So I was more than a little intrigued when I saw Pro-Ject’s Fab Four turntables (my name, not theirs) at the May press event unveiling Giles Martin’s stereo remix of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. The thought of a “new” Beatles record being played on a table that pays homage to the greatest band ever was compelling. Maybe it’s time to revisit my long-dormant vinyl collection...
Bob Ankosko  |  Sep 11, 2017  |  0 comments
Sixteen years ago today I was sitting in my office in midtown at the north end of Times Square working on my editorial for the November 2001 issue...
Bob Ankosko  |  Aug 28, 2017  |  0 comments
I tried to contain my excitement when Apple announced HomePod, declaring it “a breakthrough wireless speaker for the home that delivers amazing audio quality.” And to think that it will use “spatial awareness to sense its location in a room and automatically adjust the audio.” Fantastic! With that kind of technology, I might be forced to end my longstanding (but tenuous) relationship with Windows once and for all, trade in my Samsung Galaxy for an iPhone, and embrace Apple Music.
Bob Ankosko  |  Aug 23, 2017  |  0 comments
It’s not new but Steinway Lyngdorf’s S-15 remains stunning in its aesthetic and technical design. Visually, this tiny treasure has little in common with your garden-variety box speaker—nor should it, considering its pedigree. For starters, it’s 10 inches tall, 8 inches wide, and only 3 inches thick—or about a half-inch wider and an inch thicker than the 1997 Webster’s New World College Dictionary collecting dust on a shelf in my office.

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