Al Griffin

Al Griffin  |  Jan 04, 2022  |  1 comments
Sony released details of its Bravia XR TVs for 2022 one day prior to the official start of CES. The new lineup features the company’s first 4K and 8K LCD TVs to use Mini-LED backlight technology, along with a new 4K OLED model featuring QD (Quantum Dot) OLED tech. All of Sony’s new premium TVs are equipped with Cognitive Processor XR, the company’s next-gen video processor which works in the background to intelligently optimize color, contrast, and image depth.
Al Griffin  |  Jan 03, 2022  |  0 comments
Samsung is first out of the gate with new TV news for CES 2022. The company’s announcements cover ultra-bigscreen MicroLED models with a new form factor and pre-configured screen size option, Neo QLED 8K and 4K TVs with refined backlight control and gaming features, plus enhancements to the company’s lifestyle-oriented The Frame TVs that significantly reduce screen glare and add more lifelike canvas and paper texture to displayed art.
Al Griffin  |  Dec 29, 2021  |  0 comments
Got a tech question for Sound & Vision? Email us at AskSandV@gmail.com

Q I’m in the process of rebuilding my home theater with a 4K projector and flat-panel TV. Here’s my question: What kind of HDMI extenders can I use to pass a video signal with Dolby Vision high dynamic range (HDR) from my receiver to both screens? I’m completely at a loss here. —F. Hudson Miller, Hollywood, CA

Al Griffin  |  Dec 10, 2021  |  0 comments
Picture
Sound
Extras
The Green Knight, director David Lowery's film adaptation of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, an anonymous 14th century poem, is a fantastical, visually intoxicating take on Arthurian legend. Following a night of drinking and carousing at the local brothel, carefree young Gawain of Camelot (Dev Patel) is summoned on Christmas morning to the Round Table, where he is invited to sit beside his uncle, the king. Gawain's feeling of unworthiness is only deepened by Arthur's graciousness, and by his request for the young man to share a story of himself so they may know each other better.
Al Griffin  |  Dec 08, 2021  |  4 comments

Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $599

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Powerful, easy to use control app
Multiple input and output connections
Roon Ready and AirPlay 2-compatible
Affordable price
Minus
Hardware remote not included

THE VERDICT
Bluesound’s feature-packed DAC brings the world of high-res audio, including multiroom streaming, to existing systems at an affordable price.

Streaming DACs provide a quick and easy way to upgrade an existing hi-fi rig and make it compatible with all the advanced services available to a 21st century music enthusiast. Even someone owning a circa-1972 receiver could suddenly find themselves streaming 24-bit/192kHz high-res tracks from Qobuz, as well as "tuning in" an insane assortment of internet radio stations from around the globe. And while streaming DACs can be pricey—the Simaudio Moon 280D we recently reviewed, for example, lists for $3,000—there are also affordable options like Bluesound's $599 Node.

Al Griffin  |  Dec 03, 2021  |  2 comments
Fall 2021 was a period of intense highs and lows for streaming giant Netflix. At one extreme, it scored an international hit with Squid Game, a Korean production that quickly became the service’s most-watched show. At the other extreme, a Netflix original comedy special, Dave Chappelle’s The Closer, drew intense criticism from the transgender community over its targeted jokes. Adding to Netflix’s woes during this time was the imminent cancellation of the service by a longtime customer, Sound & Vision editor Al Griffin.
Al Griffin  |  Nov 17, 2021  |  0 comments
Got a tech question for Sound & Vision? Email us at AskSandV@gmail.com

Q I read your response to a reader who asked about using dipolar speakers as surrounds in an Atmos system. You recommended “losing any side-mounted dipole surround speakers in the system and replacing them with properly positioned direct-radiating models.” Does that same advice hold for bipolar surrounds? —Darryl Brooks, via email

Al Griffin  |  Oct 29, 2021  |  0 comments
Got a tech question for Sound & Vision? Email us at AskSandV@gmail.com

Q I tried to watch Cruella on Disney+ and was shocked by the poor video quality presented by my Roku streaming device. I was able to make the movie watchable by changing the color mode and lamp settings on my Epson HC 4010 projector, but still wonder exactly what happened. Have you noticed that some movies look notably darker than others? If so, does it have anything to do with high dynamic range (HDR)? —Gary Eickmeier, via email

Al Griffin  |  Oct 13, 2021  |  1 comments

Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $199

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Clean, clear, powerful sound
Extensive format support
Compatible with a wide range of headphones
Minus
Requires extra-cost adapter for iOS devices

THE VERDICT
THX's portable DAC/amp delivers dynamic and spatially precise sound. Paired with the right headphones, it's a compelling option for portable high-res playback

Home theater enthusiasts know THX for its certification program, an initiative responsible for the familiar logo emblazoned on all manner of gear for nearly three decades, along with the Deep Note trailer heard in certified movie theaters and on home video releases. Surprisingly, the company never released its own "THX" product, a situation that now changes with the arrival of the THX Onyx portable DAC/headphone amplifier.

Al Griffin  |  Oct 11, 2021  |  0 comments
Veneto, a region in the North of Italy—the easternmost top of the boot—is most famous for its canal-lined capital city of Venice, but it’s also home base to Sonus faber, a speaker manufacturer known for unique, elegant designs that regularly incorporate natural materials such as wood, leather, and marble.

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