Last week I got to attend the 52nd Annual International Auto Show in San Francisco. I actually got to sit behind the wheel of many fine automobiles, but one of the several cars that were off limits was the 2010 Lamborghini Murcielago. Unfortunately I've never had the pleasure of sitting (let alone driving) in a Lambo, so I've got to live vicariously through Web videos like this to get a taste of what it's like to drive the 2010 Lamborghini Murcielago LP670-4 SuperVeloce. And just as you might expect, this car appears to kick ass even on … Read more
Yesterday I was writing about the new Audi R8 sports car that's borrowed at least a few attributes from the Lamborghini Gallardo. I figured since I brought up the subject that I may as well present you with a video of that very car, and specifically in this case we are putting the spotlight on the 2010 Lambo Gallardo LP560-4 Spyder as it blazes through the Canary Islands.
Lamborghini's Gallardo is numerically its biggest production car and is generally regarded the world over as one of the best performing and aesthetically pleasing modern sports cars. The Spyder edition … Read more
It's more than a little ironic; Linn Products, based in Glasgow, Scotland, burst onto the audiophile scene in the early 1970s with its LP-12 turntable. The LP-12 has never gone out of production and earlier this year it received a bunch of performance-enhancing upgrades.
When the CD was introduced in the early 1980s, Linn was a massive digital basher. The company spearheaded an anti-CD movement in the audiophile community. It wasn't just Linn; a sizable percentage of audiophiles worldwide didn't buy CD players through most of the 1980s.
Linn introduced CD players at the close of that … Read more
When the CD was introduced in 1982, everyone thought the LP's days were numbered, but it's still here. Now it's starting to look like the LP might outlast the CD.
Of course "record stores" are also on the endangered species list; here in NYC, Tower, Virgin, and Sam Goody are long-gone, but J & R Music World in lower Manhattan is the last remaining full-size outfit. Smaller shops are hanging in there, too.
You can still buy CDs and LPs online, and vinyl's selection is getting better and better. So if you're a music lover, what should you buy, CD or LP? First, it depends on whether you can get the music you want on vinyl.
Sound quality issues aren't black and white. CD wins in terms of noise-free listening, though clean records, played on a decent turntable can sound amazingly quiet. But even then, there will be occasional clicks and pops. That's a deal breaker for some, but if you've never heard records played on a decent turntable, you don't know how quiet records can be.
LPs can sound warmer, fuller, and more natural than CDs, and way better than low-bit MP3 and AAC variants. LP sound seems to engage listeners in a very different way than digital recordings do. It's not that digital sounds bad, but vinyl is more fun to listen to. Music on LP seems more immediate and realistic than digital. Oh, and it's worth noting that most people who use vinyl actually listen to music, while digital listeners rarely do. Digital makes do as background sound. That's just the way it is. If you can't see yourself ever really listening to music--without talking, reading, working on the computer, etc--sure, CDs and MP3s are perfectly fine. … Read more
It's rare that I get my hands on a 30-inch monitor these days, as only a handful of vendors actually make them. Not surprising given their usual prices, which can range from $1,000 up to $1,600 in some cases.
The HP LP3065 is a typical 30-inch monitor. A resolution of 2,560x1,600 pixels? Check. A number of useful ergonomic options? Check. A wide viewing angle thanks to its use of high-end panel technology? Checkeroo!
Unfortunately, the LP3065 also inherits the 30-inch monitor trend of only including a brightness setting as the sole video adjustment option. Check … Read more
They're good, but do the remastered Beatles CDs offer a big enough sonic improvement over the 1987 CDs to make them essential? Listening over my high-end, two-channel system they absolutely do! But are the differences large enough to show up over an iPod, car system, or computer speakers?
The 2009 remasters are louder than the 1987 versions, so a quick comparison might lead you to believe the remaster is "better" simply because it's a little louder. And there's more bass. So if you compare old and new adjust the volume of both CDs to make them the same. Then tell me what you hear.
I compared two of the better sounding CDs, "The Beatles (The White Album)" and "Abbey Road" over my iPod, using my Monster Turbine in-ear headphones, and over my computer, with Audioengine2 speakers. Mind you, the Turbine and Audioengine2 are a good deal better than average-sounding ways to hear music, and after I compensated for the volume differences between the 1987 and 2009 versions, the sound was nearly the same.
And I was listening in a dead quiet room, add some background office or street noise and the differences would be even harder to hear. Rather than buy the new Beatles CDs, buy better headphones or speakers. They would make the Beatles music you already own sound better.
Thing is, with the 2009 remasters we're talking about fairly subtle improvements in clarity, especially in high-frequency detail, overall spaciousness, and naturalness. And the music seems more dynamically alive. Too bad those qualities evaporate over iPods, computer speakers, and car systems. … Read more
I'm following Apple's "It's Only Rock and Roll" event along with the CNET staff, but even before the event started, I saw that Apple has revealed its new LP format for iTunes.
It's called iTunes LP, and you can access it by clicking the top item on the "More to Explore" box in the left side of the iTunes Store front page. The new format includes more album art, lyrics, writing about the record, video (such as interviews with band members), and perhaps additional songs.
There are only a handful of albums … Read more
You're "feelin' groovy" but don't have a turntable or a place to plug one in? No problem, the Vinyl Killer, a.k.a., the Soundwagon can play your tunes!
Fidelity isn't a strong suit of the little toy and groove tracking can be hit or miss, but the little machine is a great gimmick. That it works at all is kind of amazing. I doubt anyone could devise a CD Killer to play a CD by driving over the pits.
I actually sold a few of these things back in the 1980s when I was … Read more