SV Staff  |  Dec 01, 2017  |  0 comments
As the holidays draw near, it’s time to start locking down your year-end plan. Which of the products on your upgrade list will make the cut? If a 4K/HDR TV is under consideration but your budget is getting a bit tapped out, we have two recent Top Picks to recommend, along with several other products that got the big Sound & Vision thumbs up in November. Among them an integrated amplifier/streamer audiophiles will love, a soundbar with Virtual DTS:X processing for $300 (no that’s not a typo), a wireless multiroom music system that’s inexpensive and sounds great, and a second-generation Ultra HD Blu-ray player that will take your home theater experience to the next level. All deserve serious consideration.
Mark Fleischmann  |  Dec 01, 2017  |  3 comments
Normally I use this blog to explain things. In this case, perhaps I need you to explain something to me. Specifically (in Jerry Seinfeld voice) what's the deal with those expensive phones?

Thomas J. Norton  |  Dec 01, 2017  |  0 comments
When a new baby arrives at the Templeton house, seven-year-old Tim has his world turned upside down. He’s even more flummoxed when he sees that the baby is wearing a suit, carrying a briefcase, and is here on a mission from BabyCorp, where babies come from. Puppy Co., the company that Tim’s parents work for, is threatening BabyCorp’s only market by producing cute, cuddly, “forever puppies” that threaten to eliminate the human passion for babies.
Mike Mettler  |  Dec 01, 2017  |  0 comments
If you do something in your life and there’s no camera around to capture it, did it really happen? In essence, that’s the core conceit of The Circle, director James Ponsoldt’s of-the-moment adaptation of Dave Eggers’ 2013 speculative fiction novel that imagines a fully interconnected world where the life unfilmed is not worth living (well, kinda).
SV Staff  |  Dec 01, 2017  |  0 comments
P&F USA, the exclusive licensee for Philips televisions and video products in North America, has announced a new series of budget 1080p TVs built around Roku’s OS 8 operating system, which features an upgraded electronic program guide.
SV Staff  |  Dec 01, 2017  |  0 comments
Emotiva Audio has introduced a wall-mountable surround speaker that can be configured as a direct radiating bipole speaker or as a forward- or rear-oriented dipole speaker to accommodate a variety of surround-sound installations.
Mark Fleischmann  |  Nov 30, 2017  |  0 comments

PRICE $300

DTS Virtual:X mimics height/surround
HDMI in and out with ARC
Pleasant voicing in most modes
Only one video input
3D Surround mode can be slightly harsh

The Yamaha YAS-207, which uses DTS Virtual:X processing to simulate height and surround effects, sounds pretty good and is easy on your checkbook.

When Dolby Atmos and, shortly thereafter, DTS:X made their debuts, I expected I’d soon be reviewing a flood of speaker systems and receivers supporting object-oriented surround in a 360-degree soundfield. My hope was that height-capable surround would spark renewed interest in surround speaker packages and receivers — and in home theater overall.

SV Staff  |  Nov 30, 2017  |  0 comments
Pong, one of the earliest arcade video games, had an inauspicious start 45 years ago this week when gaming pioneer/Atari co-founder Nolan Bushnell and game designer Allan Alcorn wheeled a prototype of their first coin-operated game machine into Andy Capp’s Tavern in Sunnyvale, California to see how the bar’s patrons would react. It was an instant hit.
Al Griffin  |  Nov 30, 2017  |  6 comments
Got a tech question for Sound & Vision? Email us at

Q Apple regularly gets flack for not offering Hi-res versions of its iTunes music catalog. I also hear that the quality of the DACs in the latest iPhones (Android phones, too) is not the greatest. Is there any device I can add to my iPhone that will coax the last bit of sound quality out of it?—Scott Oakley, Pine, AZ

Chris Chiarella  |  Nov 29, 2017  |  0 comments
So, apparently putting a bow on a fancy new TV and cramming it under the tree (or wherever your holiday customs dictate) is a thing now, which means you (or some lucky recipient) will need something extra-good to watch on it. We’ve got you covered. Each of the Blu-ray titles on our 2017 holiday list have been hand-picked to bring the merriest of AV enjoyment — half of this year’s crop even elevates the holiday cheer to 4K status. Sort of makes me think that poor VHS has become the modern equivalent of a lump of coal….