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Recent Home Theater Editorials

Xbox One X: Consoles Hit the Downside of the Innovation Curve

Xbox One X: Consoles Hit the Downside of the Innovation Curve

The biggest story out of last week's E3 was the debut of Xbox One X. Yes, Microsoft has launched the first salvo in the next-generation game console war. Xbox One X is sure to excite dedicated Xbox fans that feel they've been missing out on true 4K gaming. This time Microsoft has made Ultra-HD resolutions and HDR the prime motivator for your next console upgrade. But with no platform exclusive titles, no truly innovative changes, Xbox One X may look more like another incremental upgrade than a truly next-gen console.

Microsoft unveiled Xbox One X, its next generation game console at E3 last week. It features true native 4K Ultra-HD and HDR, but offers little else in the way of innovations. Will that be enough?

— June 21, 2017 07:00 in Editorials

Win a Fully Expenses Paid Trip to T.H.E. Home Entertainment Show

Win a Fully Expenses Paid Trip to T.H.E. Home Entertainment Show

T.H.E. Show Anaheim (formerly known as T.H.E. Show Newport), is set to take place September 21-24, 2017 in a brand new location—The Hilton Anaheim, steps away from Disneyland in southern California. Here's your chance to see and hear all the latest in high end two-channel and home theater audio gear from over 400 brands around the world. Best of all, if you enter their sweepstakes by July 4th, you can win a fully expenses paid trip for two to attend as well as many other prizes. Don't miss T.H.E. Show!

T.H.E. Show Anaheim (Sept 21-24, 2017) in Southern California is demoing over 400 brands of high end audio gear. Enter their sweepstakes for a chance to win a fully expenses paid trip for two on them!

— June 19, 2017 18:15 in Editorials

Virtual Reality Home Theater: Whole Lotta Hype - For Now

Virtual Reality Home Theater: Whole Lotta Hype - For Now

We have no doubt Virtual Reality (VR) will mature into an amazing experience for gamers. Someday, when VR no longer requires total isolation and a face-mask, it might carry the kind of mainstream appeal as home theater when it comes to bringing alternate realities to the masses. Think Star Trek Holodeck. But for now, it's the focus of a lot of hype, a lot of overly-optimistic sales projections and obscene amounts of investment capital for the foreseeable return. Will it replace home theater? We don't think so. Read on to find out why.

It’s still early days for VR, and 2016 can be seen as the market’s year zero. A wide variety of VR headsets went on sale last year after much hype, speculation and capital investment. But what's next?

— April 25, 2017 17:00 in Editorials

Trump Rolls Back Online Privacy in Regulatory Shell Game

Trump Rolls Back Online Privacy in Regulatory Shell Game

President Donal Trump just signed a repeal for an FCC privacy regulation designed to protect consumers from Internet providers selling their data. If present deregulation continues, your ISP and wireless provider will be able to sell your browsing history, app usage and geolocation information without your permission. Your online privacy could potentially be a new revenue source for telecommunications companies like Comcast and AT&T. Who do you trust to protect your data?

President Donald Trump just signed a repeal for an FCC privacy regulation designed to protect consumers from Internet providers selling their data. Find out what this means to you the consumer.

— April 07, 2017 12:00 in Editorials

Denon/Marantz Audyssey MultEQ Editor App Allows Full Customization of Sound

Denon/Marantz Audyssey MultEQ Editor App Allows Full Customization of Sound

Denon and Marantz have launched a new Audyssey MultEQ Editor app, giving home theater enthusiasts control to refine and customize the set-up of their systems for even better surround sound. The app is accessible via a tablet or smartphone device and allows for full curve editing and limiting to a certain range of frequencies for room correction. We are particularly excited about this since you can now limit Audyssey room EQ to below the room transition frequency (300Hz) to concentrate where it's needed most - the bass frequencies. Read on to find out which models support this and exactly what the app will allow you to do.

Denon and Marantz have launched a new Audyssey MultEQ Editor app, giving home theater enthusiasts full control to refine and customize the set-up of their systems for even better surround sound.

— April 05, 2017 13:05 in Editorials

Wikileaks: The CIA is Spying on All Your Electronics - And it's Getting Weird

Wikileaks: The CIA is Spying on All Your Electronics - And it's Getting Weird

The latest round of Wikileaks is called Year Zero and includes over 8,000 pages of details about how the CIA is spying on just about anything with an Internet connection. Its a sobering prospect that exploits to only a handful of operating systems, including iOS and Android, and provides backdoor access to just about everything that connects to the Internet. Your phone, TV and set top boxes are child's play - the CIA now has access to weaponized hacks on any Internet connected machinery or vehicle with electronic controls.

The latest round of Wikileaks is called Year Zero and includes over 8,000 pages of details about how the CIA is spying on just about anything with an Internet connection. Are you being watched?

— March 16, 2017 00:00 in Editorials

ATSC 3.0: Cord Cutter’s Dream or Tiered Internet Nightmare?

ATSC 3.0: Cord Cutter’s Dream or Tiered Internet Nightmare?

The FCC has approved an innovation in digital broadcast television that could change everything you thought you knew about network TV. ATSC 3.0 is the first fully interactive, 2-way, IP-based broadcast standard that will behave more like a lightweight Internet than the passive, one-way broadcasts we know today. It all sounds so great! When content from every corporation that wanted to crush the Net Neutrality Act rides into your home on a mini-Internet approved and subsidized by the same government that wants to spy on you and store all your personal information for later use against you - what could possibly go wrong?

The FCC has approved the deployment of an innovation in digital broadcast television that could change everything you thought you knew about network TV and wireless. Get the facts about ATSC 3.0 here.

— March 10, 2017 00:00 in Editorials

Is Your TV Watching You? Vizio Busted for Spying on Customers

Is Your TV Watching You? Vizio Busted for Spying on Customers

Vizio has always been a good TV in terms of bang-for-buck. You’d be hard pressed to beat Vizio over the last decade. But on February 6, Vizio went from being the toast of TV buyers everywhere to an electronic spy inside the homes of millions. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced that Vizio will pay out a settlement of $2.2 million for illegally selling data collected on some 11-million consumers including viewing habits as well as demographic info on customers. Learn how to protect yourself from your own smart TV, because it's not just Vizio, just about brand of smart TV has similar capabilities.

On Feb 6th, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced that Vizio must pay out a settlement of $2.2 million for selling data collected on some 11-million consumers using the company’s smart TVs.

— February 12, 2017 18:00 in Editorials

Super Bowl LI: Fox Sports Wins With a Cord Cutting Touchdown!

Super Bowl LI: Fox Sports Wins With a Cord Cutting Touchdown!

Listen up, rookies! Team cable is on the defense as cord cutting threatens a deep run into their end-zone. This ain’t no puppy show! To get your head into the big game this year, you’re gonna’ need your grit, your wit and a high speed Internet connection. Oh, and a set-top streaming device like Android/AppleTV, Amazon Fire TV, Windows, Roku or a game console wouldn’t hurt either. We examine how more and more people are streaming the Super Bowl LI this year.

Internet streaming is the preferred way of watching Super Bowl LI for those eschewed by outrageous monthly cable bills and haven’t bothered to hoist an antenna onto our roofs. We discuss how.

— February 04, 2017 22:45 in Editorials

The Death of 3D TV

The Death of 3D TV

The last manufacturers of 3D TV, Sony and LG, are set to end production on 3D sets this year. But the demise of 3D TV has been a long time coming. As flat panel HDTV became more and more affordable, 3D may have been seen as a the killer feature that got customers buying a new round of premium priced TVs. But 3D, a side-show at best, was miscast as a premium feature, and studios did it no favors by launching a flood of mediocre 3D movies that did little to showcase the standard's strength. It's no wonder 3D has such a bad reputation with consumers. RIP 3D TV.

The last 3D TV manufacturers, LG and Sony, have disclosed that they will end production on 3D sets for 2018. The demise of 3D was a long but steady ride downward.

— January 29, 2017 08:00 in Editorials

Beam Me Up, Scotty! Acoustic Tractor Beam Now a DIY Project

Beam Me Up, Scotty! Acoustic Tractor Beam Now a DIY Project

The tractor beam has long been the stuff of science fiction, but it turns out that this technical milestone of nerd culture already exists thanks to developments in acoustic technology. Today, you can find instructions online to build your own tractor beam with a 3D printer. However, because it uses sound, the technology is limited to very small but visible objects. But it’s already being used to study the effects on life in space and shows potential as a component in a future medical tricorder. This is just another example of technology predicted by Star Trek.

Acoustic tractor beam technology is so last year. Sure, thanks to a series of coordinated breakthroughs by an international team of physicists from the UK and US tractor beams now exist!

— January 23, 2017 12:00 in Editorials

Norway Kills The FM Radio Star – Could It Happen Here?

Norway Kills The FM Radio Star – Could It Happen Here?

Norway became the first country to begin a campaign of shutting down FM radio signals this week. The nation’s “Radio Digitization” program began on 1/11 at 11:11 am – a start time with a very “digital” feel. The FM shutdown will run through 2017 county by county, until the last FM signal is squelched and the airwaves over Norway go cold and silent in mid-December. Is Norway the first of what may eventually become a global push to 86 FM forever?

Norway became the first country to begin a campaign of shutting down FM radio signals this week. The nation’s “Radio Digitization” program began on 1/11 at 11:11 am. Will other countries do similar?

— January 12, 2017 19:00 in Editorials

Goodbye 2016: Lemmy to George Michael - The Year the Music Died

Goodbye 2016: Lemmy to George Michael - The Year the Music Died

It's been a tough year of loss for so many of the musicians we love, especially those that grew up in the 80s and revered them as icons. Yet, I know it’s ridiculous to blame the arbitrary goal posts in time we call a year for the loss of the many beloved celebrities gone in 2016. I’m certain our perception of 2016 is skewed, yet I can't help but be glad to see an end to this year. Rest in peace 2016. And good riddance.

I know it’s ridiculous to blame the arbitrary goal posts in time we call a year for the loss of many beloved celebrities in 2016. And I’m certain our perception of 2016 as the grim reaper is skewed.

— December 31, 2016 10:00 in Editorials

Razer Buys THX: What This Could Mean for Your Future Man Cave

Razer Buys THX: What This Could Mean for Your Future Man Cave

On Monday THX announced that it was purchased by Razer, a computer gaming hardware company. Razer CEO Min-Liang Tan promises to let THX run independently. Tan added that there will be collaborations bringing together THX audio experience and Razer computer technology. But many see the deal as yet another low point for the once proud THX logo. Let's take a closer look at what the deal could mean to the future of home entertainment and how it could possibly leap forward Virtual Reality technologies.

On Monday it was announced that Razer, a computer gaming hardware manufacturer, had acquired an ownership share of THX Ltd. Will the merger signify a step forward in Virtual Reality? Read on.

— October 20, 2016 09:00 in Editorials