Rob Sabin

Rob Sabin  |  Jun 30, 2017  |  0 comments
In a recent post I chided manufacturers for releasing Wi-Fi-based speakers that failed to perform reliably. But then I began to wonder about the role of our Wi-Fi networks and whether the demands of these new products are outpacing the capabilities of today’s “average” network. Ravi Rajapakse, founder and CEO of Blackfire Research, sheds some light on the subject…
Rob Sabin  |  Jun 12, 2017  |  Published: Jun 13, 2017  |  0 comments
The company best known among cinephiles for entertaining big audiences with big screens and big sound has gone the opposite way with its latest big idea: Virtual reality (VR) centers to provide one-on-one entertainment to walk-in customers at cineplexes and other venues nationwide.

Rob Sabin  |  Jun 09, 2017  |  1 comments

Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Build Quality
Value
PRICE $800

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Superb sound quality
Impressive, weather-resistant build quality
Bluetooth stereo pairing
Minus
Pricey

THE VERDICT
Soundcast’s new flagship outdoor Bluetooth speaker carries a substantial price tag, but if you’re headed for the backyard or a tailgate party, you’ll get what you pay for in sound quality, ease of use, and reliable operation.

Ever since the introduction of the first battery-driven transistor pocket radio, we’ve been taking our music outside and on the go. (By the way, that was the Regency TR-1 in the fall of 1954; visit regencytr1.com for a retrospective maintained by Don Pies, son of Regency cofounder John Pies.) Of course, any conversation today about “outdoor audio” needs to be placed in modern context. We’ve gone from being grateful for a tinny AM broadcast of “The Roy Rogers Show” played back over a tiny, underpowered speaker to expecting potent, high-quality audio in our backyards, at the beach, or in the parking lot as we tailgate before the big game.

Rob Sabin  |  May 26, 2017  |  2 comments
Brace yourself for a tour of a most remarkable home theater, built in a 4,000-square-foot basement with an adjacent movie set that celebrates the owner's childhood.
Rob Sabin  |  May 26, 2017  |  2 comments
Wireless music is a beautiful thing but not everyone has figured out how to deliver a glitch-free experience. What's going on?
Rob Sabin  |  May 11, 2017  |  1 comments
Performance
Features
Build Quality
Value
PRICE $1,000 ea

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Classic McIntosh styling
DTS Play-Fi compatibility
Excellent sound quality
Minus
Quirky Play-Fi app
Grille isn’t acoustically transparent
No Bluetooth
Pricey

THE VERDICT
It’s hardly cheap, but McIntosh’s wireless speaker will satisfy your inner audiophile in more ways than one.

My UPS delivery guy—after having me sign for a pair of McIntosh RS100 wireless speakers, whose brand labeling was plainly evident—couldn’t resist commenting before walking off with a wink and a smile: “Have fun with those!”

Rob Sabin  |  Apr 28, 2017  |  0 comments
Vizio officially showed off its new 2017 flat-panel display line-up in New York this week, with an emphasis on demonstrations designed to show off their improved technology and, as usual, high value.

Rob Sabin  |  Apr 21, 2017  |  10 comments
Being first used to mean being special, with all the attendant risk. Now, everybody’s screwed.
Rob Sabin  |  Apr 20, 2017  |  0 comments
Control4, the company behind the award-winning home automation platform favored by many electronics integrators, has taken the smart home on the road. A new "Smart Design, Smart Living" Airstream RV trailer outfitted with room vignettes designed to show off C4's technology is in the midst of a 12-week, multi-city tour to teach interior designers, architects, and consumers what home automation really is and what it can do. This miniature smart-home-on-wheels allows demonstration of automated lighting, whole-home audio and video entertainment, and security through the use of wall keypads, mounted touchscreens, conventional handheld remotes, smartphone and tablet apps, and even Amazon Alexa voice control.

Rob Sabin  |  Apr 07, 2017  |  3 comments
There’s something big goin’ on in the flat-panel TV market, in more ways than one. Sales of 4K Ultra HD displays are taking over new TV purchases at 55 inches and above, and once-pricey 75-inch 4K sets are suddenly very attainable, with some coming in well under $3,000.

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