SV Staff  |  Oct 01, 2018  |  0 comments
Three of the five audio products that achieved Sound & Vision’s Top Pick status in September prove that you don’t have to empty your wallet to get great performance. Among them is a soundbar that earned our new Top Value designation for combining an impressive set of features with authoritative sound at a price that’s hard to believe. At the other end of the spectrum is a reference-grade 4K Blu-ray player and a power amplifier reserved for listeners who will settle for nothing less than the best. When you’re finished here, be sure to visit our Top Picks page for more recommendations.
SV Staff  |  Oct 01, 2018  |  0 comments
Ready for the biggest high-end audio show in North America? The annual Rocky Mountain Audio Fest (RMAF) opens Friday, October 5 at the Denver Marriott Tech Center and runs through Sunday, October 7.
David Vaughn  |  Sep 28, 2018  |  0 comments
When an IMF agent gets killed in the line of duty, critical files containing Russian nuclear launch codes that he was carrying fall into the wrong hands. With the help of two IMF colleagues, agent Ethan Hunt penetrates the Kremlin to find out the identity of “Cobalt,” a terrorist who wants the codes to start a nuclear war. Things go awry when Cobalt plants explosives in the fortress-like complex, and Hunt and his team get blamed for the resulting carnage. As tensions rise between the U.S. and Russia, the President is forced to disavow the IMF, leaving it up to Hunt and his team to solve the crisis.
SV Staff  |  Sep 28, 2018  |  0 comments
Sol Republic, a Los Angeles-based maker of lifestyle music products, has updated its best-selling wireless earbuds to improve performance across the board.
SV Staff  |  Sep 28, 2018  |  0 comments
Audio accessory specialist Pangea Audio will showcase three new products for vinyl enthusiasts at next week’s Rocky Mountain Audio Fest, which runs October 5-7 in Denver.
Mike Mettler  |  Sep 28, 2018  |  0 comments
Who wins in the streaming war between Apple Music and Spotify? You do, of course.

Last month, you and I made a pact, right here in this space. What, you don’t remember? (Apparently, even audiophiles have ADD.) Well, our agreement was essentially this: We the golden-ear people wholly accept streaming as another worthwhile delivery system for receiving and listening to our music, especially given the strides some of the services have been making in providing higher-quality, higher-resolution streams. (Coming back to you now?)

Rob Sabin  |  Sep 27, 2018  |  0 comments

PRICE $300

Alexa voice control
Flexible connectivity
Good sound quality
Great value
No multiroom music functions

Polk’s feature-packed soundbar offers Alexa voice control and above-average sound quality. For $300, there’s plenty here to like.

A couple of Consumer Electronics Shows ago I was visiting the booth of Sound United, the parent of Polk Audio, when a friendly executive invited me up a narrow staircase to a private meeting room. Once I was sworn to secrecy, a long, thin, black travel case was brought out and laid on the ground, and its buckles were snapped open for the big reveal. I half expected it to house a bazooka of some sort. Instead, what popped out was the prototype of a thin spear of a soundbar that appeared to have an Amazon Echo Dot sunk into its middle. Polk’s team was rightfully excited about their new project. The smart speaker was just beginning its explosive push into people’s homes, and no one had yet combined Amazon’s increasingly popular Alexa voice control technology with a soundbar. It seemed liked a perfect fit for the emerging market. So, in a way, it really was Polk’s new secret weapon.

SV Staff  |  Sep 27, 2018  |  1 comments
Twenty-two years ago this month, Silicon Valley startup WebTV made a noble effort to bring the internet to the big screen with the launch of a set-top box that connected any TV to the internet. Noble because the World Wide Web was a wide-open frontier with only 36 million users worldwide. (Today, more than 4 billion people are online.) A good 92% of the American public had yet to even experience the internet let alone think about searching the web on their TV. Oh, and internet access in those days was via a “dial-up” phone connection.
SV Staff  |  Sep 27, 2018  |  0 comments
The we-sell-everything-everywhere behemoth otherwise known as Amazon is determined to remain the Big Kahuna in Smart-Speakerville.
Michael Antonoff  |  Sep 27, 2018  |  3 comments
Members of the cord-cutter's club are glad to save $100 or more each month by weaning themselves off cable TV or not signing up at all. Still, some cutters suffer remorse. They miss the convenience of a set-top DVR with its sleek onscreen guides, search facility, ability to amass recordings of their favorite series and navigational shortcuts. Suddenly, they're looking at apps across devices to fill the gaps.