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Brent Butterworth  |  Jan 23, 2012  |  0 comments

Think of tech products that are easy to use, and you’ll almost certainly think of Apple. But a new product called the Q2 Internet Radio makes the iPhone look as user-friendly as ENIAC.

Geoffrey Morrison  |  Jan 20, 2012  |  0 comments

It’s rare for any company to discuss a health problem associated with their industry. This makes V-MODA’s new line of Fader earplugs a welcome curiosity.

They claim to be “designed and tuned by professional DJs, producers and doctors.” As in, not the hard high-end cut offered by foam earplugs.

Ok, sounds like something I’d like, but where to test them. . .

Geoffrey Morrison  |  Jan 18, 2012  |  0 comments

Another CES over. Trucks loaded, booths demolished, spaces cleared to make room for the next trade show.

Geoffrey Morrison  |  Jan 02, 2012  |  0 comments

Initially, the Tablet S was supposed to be part of our big tablet roundup. Requests for review samples repeatedly ignored, so we went ahead and forgot about them. 

Well you’d never guess, but comments like “if you’re looking for the perfect tablet, you have two choices” tend to get to get a company’s attention. At least, when that company isn’t one of those two choices. 

Shiny new Tablet S in hand mere days later, I set off to find out if it could be a worthy contender against the Fire and iPad.

Geoffrey Morrison  |  Dec 30, 2011  |  0 comments

In the grand scheme of things, there’s no such thing as a “new year.” Nor are there “weeks” or “months” really. I know these are just convenient constructs for the human mind to wrap around something complex and inexorable like “time.”

Yet even knowing this, I can’t help but get a little nostalgic this time of year. The idea of one thing ending and another thing beginning brings to mind, well, this one thing ending and this other thing beginning, but in a nostalgic way.

I speak, as I so often do, of Star Wars.

Brent Butterworth  |  Dec 27, 2011  |  0 comments

When I attended my first Consumer Electronics Show in 1990, Microsoft was a relatively small company that had had one real hit (MS-DOS) and was struggling to gain traction with its other applications. I don’t think the company even exhibited at CES back then.

Geoffrey Morrison  |  Dec 21, 2011  |  0 comments

It's difficult to review an MMO (Massively Multiplayer Online) game. They are so complex, deep, and involve so many hours of play it's hard to get a feel for them without extensive "testing."

But after hours playing the beta, and a week's worth of pre-launch play, I'm comfortable making an opinion about BioWare's ambitious and much-awaited Star Wars MMO.

The short version: unbelievably, staggeringly, awesome.

Brent Butterworth  |  Dec 19, 2011  |  0 comments

Every year, magazine editors around the world solicit ideas from their writers for the compulsory “holiday gift guide.” Every year, we scrounge the Internet in search of items we think our editors will go for. ’Cause the more gift ideas the editors buy, the more money we make.

Geoffrey Morrison  |  Dec 08, 2011  |  0 comments

I'm a big fan of the Kindle Fire. It's the iPad's equal in every meaningful measure, plus it sports a more convenient form factor. Check out my review and this week's iPad/tablet face off.

But there's one thing I won't use it for: reading. Chances are, you won't want to either. So if you're thinking about getting one to use as an eReader, allow me a few words to talk you out of it.

Brent Butterworth  |  Dec 07, 2011  |  0 comments

I HAD AN EPIPHANY of sorts last week when I was doing lab measurements for our review of the Creative ZiiSound D5x. Pretty as the product is, it took me about 45 minutes to get it to mate with Creative’s supplied USB Bluetooth dongle. Then it took me another 30 minutes to get it to mate with the DSx subwoofer. In the latter case, I’m still not sure what I did right — it just suddenly started working.

Geoffrey Morrison  |  Dec 02, 2011  |  0 comments

I need your help. Maybe you can explain something to me.

Why do we need winners? I'm not talking about sports and such; I mean with A/V gear, movies, video games, etc. How many articles and forum posts have you seen that proclaim one object the winner over another?

What is behind this desire to declare a winner when there's no competition being fought?

Brent Butterworth  |  Nov 30, 2011  |  0 comments

As I was going through some old trade show photos earlier this week, it dawned on me that a lot of the products I’d photographed and subsequently reviewed turned out to be quite different from what I’d been led to expect by the demo. Sometimes products that sounded amazing at a show didn’t sound so great when I actually got a real production sample into my home.

Brent Butterworth  |  Nov 28, 2011  |  0 comments

We tend to think of speakers as devices that blast sound at us. But they actually blast sound in every direction, and that's a good thing. In fact, if they don't blast sound in every direction, it can be a problem.

A speaker's characteristic sound projection pattern, broad or narrow, is referred to as "dispersion."

Geoffrey Morrison  |  Nov 24, 2011  |  0 comments

Everyone else is doing those Black Friday shopping guides. We do things a bit differently here at the Tech2 shack on the S+V compound.

Knowing how many people have smartphones, and would rather look at them then stare at the schlub in front of them in line, we present “Stuff to Read While Waiting in Line.” Or, to translate for the New Yorkers out there: “Stuff to Read While Waiting on Line.”

You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll burp turkey from yesterday.

Brent Butterworth  |  Nov 23, 2011  |  0 comments

A few weeks ago I found myself mentioned in a rant by CNET's Steve Guttenberg. Steve thinks it's dumb for anyone but a product designer to measure the performance of audio gear. He mentioned me because I take the opposing view.

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