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Recent AV Gadget Reviews

DISH Explorer Second-Screen App for iPad Announced

DISH Explorer Second-Screen App for iPad Announced

DISH introduced something new to complement its new Hopper and Joey whole home DVR system—the DISH Explorer app for iPad. This is an intuitive "second-screen" app that lets you find programs, engage social media and also perform remote-control functions. While customers are already using tablets while watching TV, the Explorer app melds the two experiences into one seamless event. The app will be available for FREE from the Apple store starting tomorrow (January 7th). DISH Explorer expands the functionality of the Hopper by allowing customers to discover popular and trending shows, engage with fans via Twitter and Facebook, control the Hopper, and search live TV, DVR and on-demand programs—all from the iPad's keyboard.

DISH introduced something new to complement its new Hopper and Joey whole home DVR system—the DISH Explorer app for iPad. This is an intuitive "second-screen" app that lets you do a lot more.

— January 06, 2013 21:00 in AV Gadget Reviews

Sony XAV-701HD A/V Receiver with Bluetooth Review

Sony XAV-701HD A/V Receiver with Bluetooth Review

Times have changed and stereos have gotten more sophisticated, with the leading brands leap-frogging each other in terms of advanced offerings and high quality components. The new Sony XAV-701HD in-dash A/V receiver has a lot to offer today's tech-savvy customer. With all kinds of smartphone connectivity, it makes this unit an easy choice for those looking to upgrade their vehicle's factory system. And if I can give you a piece of advice—don't waste precious years convincing yourself that it's OK to endure a badly-designed stock car audio system. Change it out while you still have ears to hear.

The new Sony XAV-701HD in-dash A/V receiver has a lot to offer today's tech-savvy customer. With all kinds of smartphone connectivity, it makes this unit an easy choice for those looking to upgrade.

— December 02, 2012 21:20 in AV Gadget Reviews

G-RAID with Thunderbolt Drive Review

G-RAID with Thunderbolt Drive Review

Not only am I the face of the Audioholics product review videos, I also have the job of editing them together. That’s sort of my niche: editing video. And now that everything shoots in HD and the smallest video file can take up over a gig—sorry, gigabyte—hard drive space is a commodity that is both increasingly cheap yet even more increasingly in demand. I recently switched away from a Mac Pro tower to a faster iMac, but with that came a loss of four hard drive slots. I wanted (needed, really) an external drive solution that could replace the terabytes of internal storage I was using. But I also needed a drive (or drives) that didn’t compromise speed. Basically, I wanted a Thunderbolt drive. G|RAID's solution intrigued me, so I decided to try it out.

I needed a drive (or drives) that didn't compromise speed. Basically, I wanted a Thunderbolt drive. G-Technology's G|RAID solution intrigued me, so I decided to try it out for myself.

— November 30, 2012 07:00 in AV Gadget Reviews

Audioholics 2012 Get Together - We Can't Wait! No, Seriously.

Audioholics 2012 Get Together - We Can't Wait! No, Seriously.

We're here at the 2012 Audioholics Get Together Event in Tarpon Springs, Florida and, you know what? We just can't wait for the event to get started. Now, technically most of the listening rooms don't start until Saturday, but we found a way to get up and going the very first evening. You see, at Audioholics we're all about getting to work and being diligent. Looking around we found that there are plenty of things to review right here in our hotel room: a flat panel television... the coffee maker... but one thing caught our attention. One thing turned our heads and got us wondering about it's sound quality.. it's styling... it's functionality. And that one thing was the Sonnet AM/FM clock radio that sat at our bedside.

We're here at the 2012 Audioholics Get Together Event in Tarpon Springs, Florida and, you know what? We just can't wait for the event to get started.

— October 27, 2012 05:20 in AV Gadget Reviews

Iogear GW3DHDKIT Wireless 3D Digital Kit Review

Iogear GW3DHDKIT Wireless 3D Digital Kit Review

IOGEAR released their new Wireless 3D Digital Kit. The kit comes with a 2-input transmitter and a small receiver that can mount underneath or even behind a flat screen TV. Both units require external power and, as of right now, the system is designed so that only one receiver can be connected to a transmitter. Sure, you can probably get another cable box, but is that going to be enough? Enough when you have a Blu-ray player, DVR, and maybe even a gaming system in your main room?

The Iogear GW3DHDKIT is called the iogear gw-THREEDEE-hdkit. It is the only product on the market we are aware of that supports wireless 1080p 3D video as well as 5.1 audio.

— October 21, 2012 21:20 in AV Gadget Reviews

Vidabox LiivNAS Media NAS Preview

Vidabox LiivNAS Media NAS Preview

If you think 10 streams of HD video is overkill, the Vidabox LiivNAS isn't for you. Honestly, if you are no working with a custom installer, you probably don't need this product. But for those with complicated installs that want a central place for both storing and streaming media, the LiivNAS has a lot going for it. The price is very good for this market ($1349 base), Control4 and SONOS compatibility a must, and near unlimited storage means just about any install can be serviced. We're guessing custom installers are going to be flocking to the new Vidabox LiivNAS.

We're guessing custom installers are going to be flocking to the new Vidabox LiivNAS with its Control4 and SONOS compatibility, unlimited storage expansion ability, and reasonable price.

— October 17, 2012 06:15 in AV Gadget Reviews

DISH Hopper Joey 12-room Networked System CEDIA Preview

DISH Hopper Joey 12-room Networked System CEDIA Preview

Earlier this year we reviewed the DISH Hopper & Joey System. Then, you could connect up to three Joeys to a single Hopper system for a total of 4 rooms of entertainment. Well, now DISH has figured out how to supply up to 12 rooms of entertainment. Basically what they've done is network the Hoppers with two zones, and two hoppers per zone, with two Joeys per zone. So that makes for 12 rooms of television.

Earlier this year we reviewed the DISH Hopper & Joey System. Then, you could connect up to three Joeys to a single Hopper system for a total of 4 rooms of entertainment. Now you can do 12 devices.

— September 10, 2012 07:35 in AV Gadget Reviews

DVDO Quick6 HDMI Matrix Switch with InstaPrevue Preview

DVDO Quick6 HDMI Matrix Switch with InstaPrevue Preview

DVDO's new Quick6 HDMI switch is a high-performance HDMI switcher that features InstaPrevue technology, which enables a live picture-in-picture preview of each connected HDMI device. The Quick6 HDMI switch includes six 300MHz HDMI inputs, MHL support, InstaPrevue, and InstaPort - and let's you use all that technology without having to replace an existing AV receiver. The product's dual HDMI outputs can also be used to drive two displays simultaneously - and independently with different sources (in Matrix mode). Custom installers will likely love the Quick6 HDMI switch as it seems to be an ideal product for new and existing home theater setups with multiple HDMI sources and displays.

DVDO's new Quick6 HDMI switch is a high-performance HDMI switch that features InstaPrevue technology, which enables a live picture-in-picture preview of each connected HDMI device.

— September 09, 2012 12:40 in AV Gadget Reviews

Logitech TV Cam HD Preview

Logitech TV Cam HD Preview

The Logitech TV Cam HD will run $200 and is so new it is not yet on the Logitech website. It is said to be shipping this month, however, so keep your eyes peeled if you think this is something for you. Honestly, for $200 you can pick up a cheap tablet or a used iDevice and get Skype plus all the rest of the apps and functionality as well. We're sure someone has looked at the Logitech TV Cam HD and thought, "Now, THAT'S what I need!" If you are dying to have Skype on your big screen or if you don't have access any other way, the Logitech TV Cam HD makes sense. For the rest of the world, just open your laptop or power up your phone.

If you are dying to have Skype on your big screen or if you don't have access any other way, the Logitech TV Cam HD makes sense. For the rest of the world just open your laptop or power up your phone.

— August 17, 2012 08:00 in AV Gadget Reviews

V-MODA Faders Tuned Earplugs Review

V-MODA Faders Tuned Earplugs Review

The V-MODA Faders are designed to protect both your hearing and your listening experience. At $20 a pair, they aren't cheap but they are nowhere near as expensive as custom made earplugs (which can run in the multiple hundreds). Even the DIY molded earplugs tend to cost more. At this price, there is little not to like about the V-MODA Faders and anyone serious about protecting their hearing should have a pair around just in case. Highly recommended.

The V-MODA Faders Tuned Earplugs are designed to protect both your hearing and your listening experience. At $20 a pair, anyone serious about protecting their hearing should have a pair of Faders.

— August 15, 2012 07:35 in AV Gadget Reviews

HardCandy Bubble Case for Kindle Fire Review

HardCandy Bubble Case for Kindle Fire Review

I'm a fan of the Bubble Case for Kindle Fire by HardCandy. It has a lot of what I like to see in a case. At just over two ounces, it doesn't add much to the weight of your device while offering a lot of protection. The case is attractive and its distinctive bubble design on the back has already brought on a number of compliments. At only $40, it isn't going to break your budget. It is easy to install and hard to take off. It made an immediate impression when I received the press release. When the case came in a clam-shell plastic enclosure wrapped in a cardboard box I knew I was in for a treat. The case is very lightweight and thin. At only 2-3/8 ounces (66 grams), I was thankful it wasn't going to add much weight to the Kindle Fire (at 14.6 ounces [413 grams], the Fire is hefty for its size). The black and grey color motif, while attractive is also near impossible to photograph. Overall - recommended.

I'm a fan of the Bubble Case for Kindle Fire by HardCandy. At just over two ounces, it doesn't add much to the weight of your device while offering a lot of protection. Overall - recommended.

— July 16, 2012 21:35 in AV Gadget Reviews

IOGEAR 3D Complete+ 2D to 3D Converter Preview

IOGEAR 3D Complete+ 2D to 3D Converter Preview

The only knock we can find against the IOGEAR 3D Complete+ 2D-to-3D Converter is that we can't know how well it will perform in the real world from the specs. We're certainly interested in seeing the 2D-to-3D conversion in action. We're impressed that IOGEAR included full upscaling for those that aren't as interested in 3D as in maximizing their 2D experience. If the 3D Complete+ tests well on our measurement suite, it could be the next go-to product for 2D and 3D lovers alike.

At just under $200, the IOGEAR 3D Complete+ looks to be quite the deal - if it works well. The ability to use 3D all the time rather than just occasionally means that upgrading actually makes sense.

— July 10, 2012 22:05 in AV Gadget Reviews

Google Nexus Q Media Streaming Player Preview

Google Nexus Q Media Streaming Player Preview

It's been (semi)widely known that Google was getting into the media streaming box business. This week they leaked a page on their Google Play website for the Google Nexus Q streaming media device. The Google Nexus Q is a $299 is a 'social streaming media player' that streams movies and music directly from the cloud to your living room. It runs Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) and comes with 1GB of RAM and 16GB of local storage. It's a lot bigger than it looks in the photos (4.6" in diameter) but is still relatively small. With the Google Play and YouTube apps on your Android phone or tablet, you can use the Nexus Q to send high definition content to your television and home theater speakers. Since everything is cloud-based, the Nexus Q promises no downloads waits or syncing - everything is instant.

It's been (semi)widely known that Google was getting into the media streaming box business. This week they leaked a page on their Google Play website for the Google Nexus Q streaming media device.

— July 03, 2012 09:45 in AV Gadget Reviews

VIZIO Co-Star Stream Player Preview

VIZIO Co-Star Stream Player Preview

VIZIO seems to have really thought about what a customer might want/need with the Co-Star Stream Player. Placing itself between your cable/satellite box and display, you can access your favorite streaming service or just browse the web all while watching TV picture-in-picture. Their Bluetooth remote includes a touchpad and a full QWERTY keyboard for easy browsing. Add to that all the apps available in the Google Play store, USB and DNLA streaming, and a ton of other features and VIZIO seems to have a winner on their hands. With a street price of $99.99 (introductory free shipping) and a release date of July, we can't wait to get our hands on one of these.

The VIZIO Co-Star Stream Player goes between your cable/satellite box and display for picture-in-picture viewing while you access your favorite streaming service, web, Google TV, or play games.

— June 28, 2012 06:00 in AV Gadget Reviews