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AV Products that Should Make a Come Back?

by April 01, 2015
Khan Meme

Khan Meme

Let's face it, we all have a nostalgia side to us.  Some have it for cars, clothing, houses, etc.  But what about audio?  Of course, vintage audio is alive and kicking.  Just check out our Facebook page on Throwback Thursday.  You'll see that vintage McIntosh, JBL, Marantz are among some of the favorite brands that our subscribers love to proudly share their pictures of with us.  Our recent article on the Most Memorable Receivers of the Last 50 Years remains one of our top downloaded article on this site since we posted it over a month ago.  That tells you something.

But, what about the more obscure vintage products.  They deserve love too, especially on a day like this don't they?  Well, it's time to pay a little homage to a few of the gone, but not entirely forgotten classics.

 8-track  Lexicon BD-30

Left Pic: Classic 8-Track Player ; Right Pic: Lexicon BD-30 Blu-ray Player ($3,500)

1. The 8-Track

It’s noisy, it’s cumbersome, and unreliable, but who doesn’t miss the 8-track, especially the manual push buttons that allow “instant” advancement to the next song?  Let’s petition for the revival of 8-Track.  Perhaps Lexicon can make us a player? Hey I’m just dying to listen to Styx The Grand Illusion again, aren’t you?

2. LexiCON Blu-ray Players

Remember a few years back when Lexicon was in the Blu-ray business?  Most of the AV press praised how much better both the audio and video was on the BD-30 compared to the Oppo BDP-83.  For a $3k premium, it should have been!  Little did they know that the Lexicon player was nothing more than a BDP-83 shoehorned into a larger case with a nicer faceplate.  It would seem Lexicon has the science down on "improving" the quality of a product by just adding a sturdier case.  Just think of what they could do with your standard run of the mill $100 Blu-ray players sold at your local Wal-Mart.  Come on Lexicon, get back into the Blu-ray business.

Mi-Horn Speakers Audioholics GLOB

Left Pic: Mi-Horn Used for Speaker & Pet ; Right Pic: Audioholics GLOB Cable

3. Mi-Horn Speakers

Want to increase the efficiency of your favorite speaker?  Simply slap a Mi-Horn on it.  If it’s good enough to stop a dog from scratching its ears, it’s good enough to “improve” the sound quality and efficiency of your speakers too.  All joking aside, the Mi-Horn might actually be a benefit to a Dolby Atmos-enabled speaker to help control directivity. Hey at the very least, the Mi-Horns look pretty cool and if you want LOUD, they will certainly help there.  Plus, if you don't like the sound once you install them, they can always be repurposed to an itchy pet.

4. Audioholics G.L.O.B Battery Powered Cables

Audioquest is a true pioneer in this field.  Who else would come up with slapping a battery on a cable and charging an exorbitant amount for it?  Best of all the battery never dies because it doesn’t make an actual circuit connection that would drain it.  Each year they improve on this product by upping the DC voltage bias.  Brilliant!  Well we took it up a notch and came up with our own.  The Audioholics G.L.O.B. with our patent pending IBS system. GLOB™ – Generator Luminance Opto Biased cable is an innovative approach to cable design that incorporates state of the art materials engineering to ensure the most transparent cable in the industry. Unlike other cables that simply slap batteries on the dielectric, GLOB™ takes it to the next level by incorporating a proprietary Illumination Biasing System (IBS™ not to be confused with Irritable Bowl Syndrome) which encompasses the entire magnetic field flux density of the cable’s eddy currents.

What do you think?  Should we take preorders?

Onkyo Atmos Speaker  Atmos Speaker Diagram

Left Pic: Onkyo Atmos-enabled Speaker ; Right Pic: Not so Accuate Atmos Ray Optic Diagram

5. Dolby Atmos-Enabled Speaker

Touted as the "greatest breakthrough in 20 years", Dolby has come up with a patent-pending invention to angle a speaker driver at ear level up to the ceiling to magically bounce sound down to the entire listening area and create the illusion of height. They even go so far as to claim its the "preferred" speaker choice over a discrete ceiling mounted speaker in "some" cases".  We're still trying to figure out which cases those are because all of our listening tests so far have unanimously prefer the discrete ceiling mounted speakers.  Most of the industry apparently agrees since to date there are only a handful of manufacturers licensing the Dolby Atmos-enabled speaker technology.  Some have gone so far as to bypass the Dolby crossover and associated licensing fee to make "Almost-Atmos" speakers. Personally, we are waiting for Dolby to release Atmos-2 with floor sound effects so they can add an additional driver at the bottom of existing front and surround speakers to bounce sound down at the floor.  Why not?  We still have 3 or 4 available surfaces with no drivers on them.  The sky is the limit!

Let us know on our forum what products would you like to see brought back into the AV world?  Happy April Fools Day to all!


About the author:
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Gene manages this organization, establishes relations with manufacturers and keeps Audioholics a well oiled machine. His goal is to educate about home theater and develop more standards in the industry to eliminate consumer confusion clouded by industry snake oil.

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