Records are skinny things, but once you have more than 100 or so they start to take up a lot of space. Some vinyl philes just leave them on the floor, or lean them up against furniture. Yuch! The nice folks at Atocha Design build gorgeous hi-fi furniture. Each piece is made to fit your needs, contact Atocha Design to get a price quote. Finish options run to American Maple, Walnut, Oak, and Bamboo; handles are solid brass. Atocha Designs are hand crafted in the U.S.A.
At the recent Dumbo Art Under The Bridge Festival in Brooklyn, N.Y., I heard two rather amazing sound installations.OrganicInterfaces is a collective of artists, scientists, engineers, and musicians and their installation, Mocean was a truly enveloping sound experience. Their Web Site describes it this way, Mocean is a site-specific sculptural sound environment. It consists of a large water tank and a forest of antique organ pipes...digital technology translates the (water's) ripple patterns into sounds played by the repurposed organ pipes, establishing a relationship between water and sound. For the DUMBO Art Festival, we used a 12-foot diameter swimming pool and some new technologies, expanding the range of possible interactions and sculptural interventions..."
At the DUMBO show, Mocean was located in a small warehouse garage, open to the street. Flat stones were placed in the pool to serve as a path for people to walk over. The organ pipes hanging from the ceiling were tuned to different pitches and their sounds were complex and surprisingly musical. I listened for quite a while and found the sound absolutely mesmerizing.
Actually, the best part was watching how different people reacted to the sound as they walked over the stones. Some realized their movements changed the sound, and they "played" the organ pipes by swaying their arms and moving about. Little children were the best; they were totally uninhibited about making weird sounds.
Then there was Ted Southern's sidewalk sound show. … Read more
I'm a middle-aged guy, so sure, I read the CNET review of the new Dodge Challenger SRT8 just to get vicarious kicks imagining what it's like to drive a 425-horsepower muscle car. It sounds like a real thrill ride, and sure it's a serious gas guzzler: "The EPA rates the Challenger SRT8 at 14 city mpg and 22 highway mpg. However during our leadfooted testing, we only managed 13.7 mpg over a mixed city and highway cycle."
Even so, I suppose the Challenger's tested price of $43,730 will place it in the affordable range for a lot of folks, or let's be honest, guys. It's a car to get noticed in, but no one's fooling themselves into believing the SRT8 is merely reliable transportation. It's a toy, and if you can swallow the fuel bill, it's a heck of a ride.
Same can be said about high-end audio. It's not practical and it can be expensive to run, but once you get used to what it can do when it's playing your favorite tunes, a $500 HTIB won't cut it anymore. High-end audio isn't an appliance, it's supposed to get your heart pounding and blood flowing, not so different than the SRT8.
Thrill seekers lusting after a muscular audio system equivalent of the SRT8 should check out the following system.
Muscle cars are as American as apple pie, so I went for American made hi-fi where I could. I reviewed Klipsch's mighty RF-83 tower speaker ($2798/pair) for Home Theater magazine last October, but it's still a current model. With three 8-inch woofers and a 1.25-inch horn-loaded titanium diaphragm compression tweeter, the RF-83 mos' definitely will rock your world. Add the 12-inch Klipsch RT-12d subwoofer ($2,199) to ensure the deepest and tightest low bass. … Read more
The iPhone 3G brought changes in shape, function, features, and so on, but to the dismay of many cell phone photographers, the device retains the same 2-megapixel camera as the first iPhone. Apple enhanced the camera via software improvements by coupling the camera to the GPS feature of the iPhone 3G to enable photo geotagging, but this did little to calm the complaints about the camera's resolution, lack of flash, and other features available on a few other phones. However, users have developed exciting ways to use the camera, and there are several innovative third-party applications to help along … Read more
When Apple announced its new notebooks on Tuesday, it said the new machines would be in the company's retail stores the next day.
So I went to the Apple store at the Westfield Valley Fair mall in Santa Clara, Calif., after work on Wednesday. I got there a few minutes after 6 p.m. and discovered that an Apple technician was in the process of replacing an old MacBook Pro with the first one of the new models.
I positioned myself authoritatively about a foot from the tech's left elbow, so when he was done, I was the … Read more
I've reviewed hundreds of speakers, and back when I was selling high-end audio, I auditioned many hundreds more. Summing up those experiences here's what I've learned: they all sound different, but some sound more "right" than others.
"Right" connotes an even-tempered balance that doesn't call attention to itself and is likely to wear well over the years. The Aperion Intimus 5T-DB Hybrid HD should do just that. You can read my full review for Ultimate AV here.
The Intimus 5T-DB Hybrid HD ($2,829) is a six-piece system featuring a pair of 5T towers, the 5C center speaker, a pair of 5DB dipole/bipole surround speakers and a remote-controlled subwoofer, the Bravus 10D. True, the speakers don't look all that different than previous generations of Aperions, but as they say, the devil is in the details.
Aperion sells direct from its Web site with a 30 day money back return policy. UPS Ground shipping is free in both directions, and Aperion doesn't collect sales tax in the continental US. Feel free to try the Intimus 5T-DB Hybrid HD as I reviewed it -- and then if you decide, heck, I want the larger Bravus 12D sub that'll be no problemo. Aperion will pay for the Bravus 10D's return shipping and you'll just pay the difference in price between the two subs.
Monday, I wrote about the process of upgrading the hard disk on my Apple MacBook Pro, and the as-yet unsolved problem of migrating the 20GB Boot Camp partition on the old hard disk--along with its Windows Vista installation--to a 32GB partition on the new drive. (See "Another new hard disk...and an unsolved problem.")
Well, it's all working now. As I've always said about the Mac, most things are either easy or impossible...and this one turned out to be easy.
The audiophile lexicon goes way, way back, at least to the early 1950s hi-fi craze. Here's a place to get a grip on it.
"For years, I have been on a personal crusade to put whatever effort I could into helping raise awareness of our industry," McGowan said. "I have spent hundreds (probably thousands) of hours answering questions about everything from how to connect a loudspeaker to how a transistor works, all in service to PS Audio customers and … Read more