Posts Tagged home theater

This Etekcity Bluetooth Receiver Audio Adapter makes old equipment feel like new

bluetooth-receiver-audio-adapter

Technology is growing at an ever-increasing rate. While this is awesome and means that there will be a lot of advances in medicine, clean energy, and farming, it also means that it’s hard to keep up with all the toys, gizmos and gadgets. Crazy as it may seem, not everyone wants to throw away all of their electronics every year and buy the newest thing on the market.

If you fall under that category and are still enjoying your old speakers that don’t connect via Bluetooth, but sometimes wish that they did, the Etekcity Bluetooth Receiver will make what is old feel like almost brand new. This gives you up to 10 hours of 4.0 Bluetooth streaming on a full charge with a range of 33 feet. You’ll be able to use this for your home theater system, car stereo, or just your normal speakers for your TV or computer.

This easily adapts through A/V, RCA, and a 3.5mm jack. It was made to be portable so it can make any speaker system you come across Bluetooth compatible. The charge time to get it to full is around 2 hours, but thankfully you can use it while it’s plugged in. Obviously though, that will increase the charging time. You’ll be looking at paying out around $19 for this little device, but that is vastly better than paying for a brand new speaker system for all of your various devices.

Available for purchase on Amazon
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The Devialet Phantom – can you recognize quality sound?

When you watch a video on YouTube, you can tell when quality is lacking. The image on your screen is pixelated, the sound is tinny, and while you can figure out what’s happening, you know searching for another of the same video will likely yield better results. Can you tell when a speaker at home is lacking quality? Do you keep an ear out for how it handles highs and lows?

If you not only notice that sort of thing but are appalled when it doesn’t live up to your expectations, then you’re likely on the hunt for a better speaker. If Devialet isn’t all talk, it seems as though the Phantom might have something to offer. Their creation is a 3000 Watt speaker that is said to give an ultra-dense sound that you can feel. They tout no distortion, saturation, or background noise from 16-25khz.

While they say it will replace any system you have, they also recommend getting 2 or more for an even more immersive sound. That is likely due to speakers being prone to having a sweet spot where you can hear the sound the best from one angle to the speaker than another. This can play all your music wirelessly through Bluetooth or WiFi, and is going to cost you a pretty penny at $2,390, coming in silver or white, though the latter only has 750 Watts and costs $1,990. If you’re an audiophile and it lives up to the hype, then it sounds like it might be worth the trouble.

Available for purchase on Amazon
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Plantronics RIG has a fancy new line of headphones for gamers

My love of gaming is only topped by my love of coffee and food, and when a brand that I know has made some pretty solid products to enhance my gaming experience comes out with a new line, it feels like Christmas. Plantronics announced last month that a whole new series of RIG headphones would be hitting the market during the holiday season of this year. That just lets us know we can start encouraging our family and friends to buy them for us now.

This new line consists of the of the RIG 400, 600, 800 series, and 4VR. The 400 and 800 are meant for the Xbox One, giving you options for wired and unwired. The 600 series is a cross-platform pair of headphones which is quite similar to the RIG we looked at some time ago, and the 4VR is a wired headset specifically for PS4 and PlayStation VR.

To look a bit more in-depth at these options, the RIG 400 series is lightweight, has sound-isolating earcups, a detachable boom mic, inline controls, 40mm drivers (which is what all of them have), and despite being meant for Xbox One wireless controllers, it comes with a 3.5mm jack to be used across other platforms. The 600 is aimed more at traveling video game and music enthusiasts. It too has sound-isolating earcups, inline controls, a detachable mic with an additional option for an inline mic, 40mm drivers with passive resonators, is lightweight, and can fold up when you need to dash out the door. Looking to the 800, there are big squishy earcups, the same driver/resonator setup as the 600 series, dials on said earcups as there’s no wire, it’s said to be lag-free, and has a 24 hour battery life. The 4VR has a flexible frame, oval earcups that will be comfortable with a VR headset on, detachable boom, and 40mm drivers. No word on price yet, but you can imagine they’ll be around the $150 mark if the RIG we looked before is any indication.

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The Razer Turret makes being a couch potato seem like a good thing

We’re not trying to be lazy when we get home from work, but when you’ve already pushed yourself for ten or more hours, it’s just too taxing to do any more in a day. The moment the shoes come off and you get comfy, many of us end up with a controller or mouse and keyboard in our hands. Usually one or the other would delineate whether you’d be at a desk or on the couch, but thankfully we have all sorts of ways to make it so you don’t have to choose between one or the other.

If you’re into brand name, then Razer has the perfect wireless gaming keyboard for you, and it’s called the Turret. This setup was made specifically for couch-lovers who want a PC gaming experience in a more cozy setting. This comes with dual wireless connectivity, meaning you can be hooked up to your console or PC and shouldn’t be able to call lag legitimately.

This is ultra-slim and has a hinge to fold up so it will stay out of your way when you’re watching mindless shows on TV rather than gaming. When you are tapping away on the chiclet-style keys, you’ll be happy to know that the battery should last for up to four months, if you’re not using it every waking moment you’re alive. It has a 3500 DPI sensor, ambidextrous form factor, and has anti-ghosting for up to 10 simultaneous presses. This is going to cost you $149.99, so you’ll probably need to be pretty serious about how comfortable you want to be before spending extra on this when you could just sit at your desk.

Available for purchase on Amazon
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Swiss Engineered Quad Calibrated Turntable costs a bomb

swiss-quad-turntableA turntable might be seen by some to be an antique, while for the others, it might be a plaything for folks who have some extra dough to splash at the end of each month. After all, vinyl records are not all that cheap in the first place, and they do tend to wear out with constant listening, so you might want to use them sparingly. Well, a device that does CD playback and has USB compatibility is extremely common and affordable, but if you would like to go all out, then the $94,000 Swiss Engineered Quad Calibrated Turntable might be just the right thing for you.

This happens to be a turntable that provides vinyl enthusiasts the pleasure of listening to LPs using one of four precisely calibrated tone arms. It has been specially crafted in Bern, Switzerland, where it is composed of a magnetically suspended aluminum platter that is nestled within a special wooden cylinder, ensuring it delivers a stable, silent base that will remain unaffected by environmental vibration. A quartet of smaller cylinders will surround the platter of each house, letting you listen to different styles of music with whichever tonearm provides your preferred sound quality. Not only that, there is also integrated damping technology that does away with the troublesome sonic aberrations generated by common consumer models, as each cylinder sports a trio of adjustable steel feet that enable precisely calibrated height placement for the central platter and four tonearms. Definitely a purchase for the filthy rich!
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Focal introduces Utopia, Elear and Listen headphones

utopiaThe world does not consist of solely your city, state or country. We are living in a global village in the here and now, and hence, it is far from surprising to see the likes of Focal, a leading French speaker and headphone manufacturer, introduce not one or two, but rather, three pairs of premium headphones. These three will be known as the Utopia, Elear and Listen.

Focal’s high-end headphones did not come about by chance. Rather, they were the result of more than 35 years of development and manufacturing of loudspeakers in France, and Utopia is one of those models where no expense was spared during its development in the quest for the ultimate listening experience.

What is so special about Utopia that will hopefully live up to its name in terms of performance? It is the first full-range loudspeaker in a pair of headphones in the world. In other words, this open-back reference headphones have been specially to offer the ultimate listening experience for even the most critical audiophile, where it makes it far more than just an ordinary pair of headphones.

Focused on the ideals of perfection, no stone was left unturned in the creation of Utopia, where even the raw materials were also looked into, in addition to the construction of the drivers, the padding used in the ear cups, and the leather used to wrap them for the ultimate comfort. Heck, even the quality of the cable and packaging used were inspected so that Utopia is given a premium look and feel.

Its driver will make use of beryllium that is 30 times higher cost than gold, where it will boast of a completely open front and open back design. When used alongside a proper headphone amplifier/DAC, it will feature a frequency response from 5Hz to 50kHz, and since the driver assembly is so light, it is able to vibrate 50,000 times per second, resulting in some of the most airy, open-sounding, yet sonically accurate music in any genre.

The Utopia is set to retail for a whopping $3,999, while the lesser Elear is going for $999 a pop with the new Listen headphones being the most affordable of the lot, sporting an asking price of $249.

Press Release
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Casio intends to bring projectors for gamers

casio-projector-advanced-XJ-F210WNGamers have always wanted nothing but the very best that they can buy, and this would include monitors. Some gamers are fortunate enough to be able to afford multiple screen setups, while others are perfectly happy with a single large display. Regardless, you will never be able to obtain the viewing size of a projector, and Casio has just the thing for those who would want to enjoy a big screen gaming experience without having to burn a hole in their pockets.

Regardless of the kind of video game genre that you like to indulge in, ranging from a MMORPG to a First Person Shooter, or even a Real Time Strategy title, all of those are instantly a whole lot more enjoyable when you see it on the large screen (or as far as your living room wall is able to accommodate).

Joe Gillio, Senior Director Strategic Planning and Marketing, Casio’s Business Projector Division, has this to say, “In the gaming industry, it’s clear that enthusiasts are passionate about creating a complete experience to truly immerse themselves in the game. We want to ensure that gamers are able to have great visuals and Casio projectors, such as our new XJ-F210WN, are the ideal tools due to their innovative features, bright images and affordable price.”

The Casio XJ-F210WN will be part of the award-winning Advanced Series line of projectors, where it will boast of the entire slew of features and performance that have made Casio’s customers happy all this while. The Casio XJ-F210WN will arrive in a compact form factor, not to mention at a more affordable price point to boot. It will be powered by Casio’s LampFree technology, which means you no longer have to scratch your head or worry about replacing expensive and hazardous mercury lamps, making each purchase more cost effective and safer for the environment.

Not only that, the XJ-F210WN will also boast of a 20,000-hour estimated operating life and consumes half the amount of power per unit compared to traditional lamp-based projectors. So far, power consumption at the brightest setting is only 180 watts and eco modes will be able to further reduce power consumption by up to 50%. In addition, its dust resistant design is made possible by structuring the internal components into a trio of blocks so that it can shield the optical block from dust.

This WXGA model will achieve its maximum brightness in as fast as five seconds from the time it is turned on, and can be powered off immediately with just a touch of the button. A couple of HDMI terminals as well as a USB power supply round off its connectivity options. Any takers?

Press Release
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Vizio reveals new home theater sound bar range

When it comes to having a decent home theater system, there are many different players out there in the market who are vying for a slice of the pie, which is good news for consumers since this means there are many different options to pick from. Apart from good visuals, one should also look into making sure that audio works great on their end as well. With so many sound bars out there in the market, just which particular model should we choose? Vizio has just the thing this time around, as their all new home theater sound bar collection is revealed, arriving in a new slim design while delivering high performance 5.1 surround sound.

This new range is part of the next generation Vizio SmartCast Ecosystem, where it comes integrated with Google Cast for simple WiFi casting regardless of where you are in the home. The new Vizio SmartCast sound bars will comprise of the 38″ 2.1 Sound Bar System, and it will have other models as well all the way to the flagship 45″ 5.1 Slim Sound Bar System. Each of these audio products are able to be controlled by the Vizio SmartCast app which is capable of transforming just about any mobile device into a powerful touchscreen remote.

The SmartCast 45″ 5.1 Slim Sound Bar System is perfect for home theater enthusiasts who are on the lookout for elegant style, while being able to enjoy the highest quality audio (at that price, of course) and a true 5.1 surround sound. It has been designed to complement 47″ class size displays and above, being engineered with custom drivers, a center channel for enhanced dialogue clarity and a sleek profile that doesn’t sacrifice audio quality.

Not only that, these have been priced at extremely affordable figures, starting from just $219.99 for the 38″ 2.1 Sound Bar System all the way to $499.99 for the 45″ 5.1 Slim Sound Bar System, which should be able to fit the budget of everyone.

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Acer unveils its V9800 4K Ultra-High-Definition Home Cinema Projector

When it comes to home entertainment, the experience that one’s senses go through are slowly but surely about to reach the par of that of a cinema, although unless you are someone who is flush with cash, chances are you would not end up with a cavernous hall that is akin to a small cinema, but rather, would be pleased as punch with a big enough room that has a large sized screen – curved or otherwise. If you would like to go one step further, how about investing in a projector instead? 4K projectors are starting to catch up in the mainstream market, and Acer has hopped along the bandwagon with its V9800 4K Ultra-High-Definition Home Cinema Projector.

Interestingly enough, Acer happens to be the world’s third largest projector brand, and with the announcement of its V9800 4K UHD home cinema projector, your eyes will be able to appreciate the Native Ultra-High-Definition (UHD, 3840 x 2160) resolution that it dishes out, in addition to the incredible color range that will make the V9800 the ideal projector for a truly cinematic viewing experience – regardless of where your abode is at.

The TI 4K DMD processor will allow the V9800 to serve up more than 8 million pixels, which is four times more than a 1080p Full HD projector. The UHD resolution ensures that images will be able to come to life on the big screen with all of the user’s favorite movies projected in incredibly fine detail, while a super-resolution video engine enables the V9800 to upscale and enhance lower resolution content.

Acer’s ColorPurity technology is also thrown into the mix with the V9800, where it merges a RGBRGB color wheel with unique lamp control techniques, and as a result, you end up with a wider color gamut and reduced rainbow effects. The V9800 will be able to operate at an extremely low noise level of 20 dBA, ensuring that movie aficionados will be able to hear even the quietest whispers.

In terms of pricing and availability, that will differ from region to region, so it would take a formal announcement in due time to sort that out.

Press Release
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Vivitek revels in new ultra-short throw projectors

vivitekI know that the world of consumer electronics would be far more interested in new devices that titillate the senses such as virtual reality machines or perhaps a brand hew flagship smartphone that comes with everything and the kitchen sink included. Where projectors are concerned, those are not exactly crowd pullers, but projectors do happen to have their own place in the pecking order of things, and it goes without saying that newer models are not only lighter and last a whole lot longer, but also deliver an image quality that is worth checking out. Vivitek is one of the players involved, where they have revealed its next generation of ultra-short throw interactive projectors, namely the DH759USTi and D756USTi.

The DH759USTi happens to be Vivitek’s 3rd generation of HD1080p ultra-short throw projectors, where it will boast of built-in pen interactivity and finger-touch upgradability, while both projectors will ensure that your eyes get to enjoy an impressive image, resulting from the outstanding brightness and contrast ratio of 10:000:1, in their respective native resolutions.

As for the benefits that accompany either the DH759USTi or the D756USTi, they will include full IWB functionality with IR pen support and upgradable 10-point finger-touch interactivity with a finger-touch DT02 laser curtain for intuitive interaction. This interactivity will be further enhanced thanks to the included NovoScreenNote interactive software for Mac and PC for session recording as well as screen annotation and markup.

These projectors are pretty much hassle free to set up, and will require the least possible ongoing maintenance. Not only that, both the DH759USTi and D756USTi will feature low-cost operation with a lamp life up to 7,000 and 10,000 hours, respectively. Your ears will also be able to benefit thanks to the integrated audio speakers that deliver 10W+10W (20W) for clear and loud audio enhancement. Each purchase will be accompanied by an industry leading standard five-year warranty and advanced exchange programs that ensure minimal cost of ownership if you are a bean counter.

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