Articles by Michael Riesenbeck - View Profile

Tributaries Offers Remote Protection and Filtering for Displays and Projectors

by Michael Riesenbeck on Sep 26, 2011 at 01:17 PM

As the home entertainment landscape continues to evolve and homes become filled with more components, the question of how to keep all of your precious babies protected becomes tricky. Tributaries has a neat solution, though: PWRI-XF In-wall AC Power Extension Outlet Kit. With the PWRI-XF, users can remotely protect and… Continue Reading »

CEDIA 2011: Kordz Introduces PRS Series Commercial HDMI Cable

by Michael Riesenbeck on Sep 11, 2011 at 11:09 AM

Televisions are sexy. So are receivers. And speakers. Amplifiers too. Now let’s not forget how all that sexy stuff works: cables. I’ll bet when friends come over for movie night you’re not likely to show off the latest and greatest HDMI cable. Guests aren’t going to get all hot and… Continue Reading »

CEDIA 2011: Anthem Introduces Statement M1 Amplifier

by Michael Riesenbeck on Sep 8, 2011 at 03:15 PM

Anthem is exhibiting at the 2011 CEDIA Expo, showing off a new addition to the Statement Amplifier Series: the M1 mono amplifier. The M1 is capable of 2400 watts when connected to a 120-watt/15-amp line, only occupies one rack unit, and features a heat pipe cooling system that allows multiple… Continue Reading »

CEDIA 2011: New Products from Polk Audio

by Michael Riesenbeck on Sep 7, 2011 at 01:25 PM

Polk Audio is showing off a number of new products at this year’s CEDIA Expo, including high performance headphones, an updated LSiM home audio speaker series, and its next generation SurroundBar. Polk’s Performance Line-Up features four “UltraFit” headphones in a variety of styles and colors, including in-ear, on-ear, and in-ear… Continue Reading »

CEDIA 2011: Atlantic Technology’s PowerBar 235: a SoundBar without a Subwoofer

by Michael Riesenbeck on Sep 7, 2011 at 08:58 AM

SoundBars are all the rage these days. Now you might think that if you’ve read about one, you’ve read about them all. But the PowerBar 235, which is being introduced by Atlantic Technology at the 2011 Custom Electronic Design and Installation Association Expo, is a little different. The PowerBar 235… Continue Reading »

Terra Introduces LuminSound LED Outdoor Lighting and Sound

by Michael Riesenbeck on Sep 1, 2011 at 02:33 PM

With only a few more weeks until Mother Nature trades her bikini for an overcoat, it’s probably wise to schedule that backyard barbecue now and soak up the last few rays while you can. Terra Loudspeakers has the perfect companion for any outdoor party: the LuminSound LED outdoor entertainment system.… Continue Reading »

Paradigm Introduces Monitor Series 7 Loudspeakers

by Michael Riesenbeck on Aug 25, 2011 at 09:12 AM

Paradigm is introducing a completely redesigned lineup of loudspeakers: Monitor Series 7. According to Paradigm’s Manager of Product Development, Paul Wojciechowski, the company was looking to improve acoustic integrity with the Monitor Series 7, but also provide loudspeakers with a streamlined aesthetic and a smaller footprint.  The Series 7 features… Continue Reading »

Listen Comfortably with the GefenTV Auto Volume Stabilizer

by Michael Riesenbeck on Aug 16, 2011 at 09:38 AM

I’ll never forgot the first time I listened to “In The Flesh?” by Pink Floyd… This track is so quiet, I think I better turn up the vol… WHAT THE HECK WAS THAT?! I get the same feeling (and jump out of my skin) every time I’m watching television and… Continue Reading »

NuForce Introduces Sexy New USB DAC

by Michael Riesenbeck on Aug 10, 2011 at 01:08 PM

Now Playing: Trans-Continental Hustle by Gogol Bordello It’s a fitting soundtrack by which to write about the NuForce uDAC-2 SGE digital audio converter. I’m really doing Gogol Bordello’s signature brand of “Gypsy Punk” a disservice by using my laptop for playback. The band’s multi-layered compositions deserve better than a minuscule… Continue Reading »

SurgeX Introduces XU315-DC Surge Eliminator

by Michael Riesenbeck on Aug 7, 2011 at 08:57 PM

If you’ve invested a considerable fortune in home theater components, you’ll want to make sure they’re protected from Mother Nature’s nastiest ka-booms and light shows. The new XU315-DC from SurgeX should do the trick. The 315-DC offers a regenerated sign wave output with no interruption that will keep your components… Continue Reading »

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Was looking for a DVD/VCR recorder combo and had basically chosen this unit, the came across your article - question: are you still happy with it??



HBO requires a level of content protection that is not currently supported by Airplay/Apple TV. This is a capability that might be offered in the future as per HBO GO

kate on
HBO Debuts HBO GO App for iOS, and Android
September 12th 2011 9:42 AM

Way to go Aidan! Congratulations on your discovery and deserving award.

Is there anyone that has use this 3D adapter kit, How good or bad do this adapter do ?

Good points John.  For me it sort of helps to answer my question but for different reasons. That is: in those instances where i have a fully DDD recording on LP, the CD will probably serve me just as well.  I will note that many early CDs sounded bad because they were made from compressed-for-lp slave copies of master tapes or (in the case of some “twofers” (2 albums on one disc) a smaller size file was used to squeeze all the info on a single disc (zappa’s overnight sensation/apostrophe disc was way tinny sounding and fared much better—after complaints—breaking them out into two discs at fuller CD resolution

Regqrding the sound of vinyl vs CD and distortion “hidden” in the LP, more times than not I was amazed to find out that distortion I heard on vinyl—and which I attributed to my less than perfect condition pressings—were actually on the original recording. I was surprised hearing certain records by Zappa, The Velvet Underground, Dylan, The Moody Blues and others on CD for the first time and discovering that my LPs didnt sound so bad after all ... it was the way the recordings were made!

I do believe that analog masters contain more sonic info than 44.1/16-bit clones would be able to capture.  But I have to assume (unless someone explains otherwise) that for recordings made natively in the digital domain, then those recordings are what they are…. they’ll never be anything more than what the original was recorded at.

So there is probably no good reason to keep a digitally recorded LP if I can get it on CD these days… unless of course it contains a mix that was later changed/remixed

Hi Mark,

This has been my life’s work since about 1978.  We had some of the first digital multitrack recorders that 3M ever built, and a huge part of my life was supervising the cutting of analog (and later digital) tape masters into vinyl, following those lacquers through electroplating, and then the actual pressing into vinyl.  We had our own pressing plant, so I got to see it all happen every day, from trombonists coming through the front door to record jacket fabrication and excess vinyl re-grinding to make audiophile records.

The bigger point is not which sounds “better”—it’s what sounds most like what the mixer heard when he was working on it in the control room.  If you had the privilege, as I did for years, of sitting beside a mixer listening to control room monitors and watching as he went for a particular “sound”, often worrying himself about the accuracy of the speakers and the room acoustics, you would understand that the whole goal was to try to replicate what he heard. 

Analog tape was very good at that, but always lost a bit of transients, and increased the noise floor a bit, simply because of the limitations of tape.  Indeed it was often quite difficult to tell whether you were listening to the console output or the one-second-delayed playback head of the 2-track master.

When digital mastering came on the scene, first on videotape (we used black and white U-matics, which is why the weird sample rate of 44,100 came to be—it’s a multiple of the horizontal sync frequency of black and white videotape) we were all amazed at the transparency.  What we heard coming back from the digital deck was an identical sonic clone to the console itself, indeed showing the limitations of the console electronics.

Many consumers, however, had grown accustomed to the tracking and tracing errors and distortions that vinyl records inherently have.  No vinyl record truly sounded like what we were hearing on the mix console; it was several layers of distortion removed, with the distortions coming from the cutting angle of the cutterhead, the “de-horning” process which cut off the bottom of the grooves so that the vinyl would release from the stamper, and the inherent noise of the vinyl medum itself.

A CD is a much, much closer replica of what the original mixer heard on his board than an LP could ever be.  Now does that mean that you would rather experience what the mixer heard or experience what an LP listener of the era heard?  That’s actually a very serious question.  Almost no one who didn’t work in recording studios heard “clean” audio, and it was a very foreign sound to consumers, resulting in a lot of reluctance to accept digital media.  Consumers simply didn’t understand that they were, for the first time, hearing what we had heard in the production control rooms.  In many cases, the noise floor and distortion of the vinyl helped to cover up the limitations of the original master—making the CD sound “worse”.

I hope this helps, but I fear it may only add to the confusion.

NW. I bet a tactile transducer connected straight to the desk couldn’t even do that.

BB1 on
How Much Bass is Too Much Bass?
August 09th 2011 8:53 AM

I have the streaming-only service.  One thing that ticks me off is - I am using a web-based service, right - but there are no web-based methods of contact with Netflix - go ahead, try to find a “contact us” that isn’t a phone number!  No email, no chat, nothing!

I wanted to complain about how they had lured me into their service, only to start dropping some titles I had expected to be able to watch (such as all of the, admittedly limited, selection of James Bond flicks).

I also wanted to complain that for weeks, the “Recently Watched” listing was missing.

MikeG on
Netflix's Latest F-You Communiqué
August 02nd 2011 10:59 AM

Wow i would be pissed if i was a Netflix user pisssssed. Here is a secret people. Corporations only get away with what you let them get away with. Hit their pocket book and they will suddenly start whistling another tune.

Carmen on
Netflix's Latest F-You Communiqué
August 01st 2011 3:48 PM

I don’t work for Netflix and I think the author of this article is a huge baby-man with an entitlement complex.

Netflix's Latest F-You Communiqué
August 01st 2011 3:23 PM