1964 Ears makes custom-molded, in-ear headphones, just like Ultimate Ears, JH Audio, and Westone, but 1964 Ears is a relative newcomer. It has to try harder than the more established brands, so 1964 Ears offers a wider array of customizable features and service options than the others. Prices start a little lower, at $350 for the 1964-D, and $650 for the top-of-the-line model I'm reviewing here today, the 1964-V6. That's significantly less expensive than the established brands' flagships.
Apple's Mac systems come with a basic audio controller for playing through the system's internal speakers or through the audio ports to headphones or a stereo system. However, if you would like to use a different controller such as a multi-channel USB interface for recording with GarageBand, Logic, or other use, then you can add it to the system and set it up to be used instead of Apple's controllers.
While useful to have, if you configure your system with multiple interfaces then you might run into an issue where the system could revert to its internal … Read more
Even by Oppo's high standards the BDP-105 is an extraordinary Blu-ray player. Sure, it's loaded with up-to-the-second features -- 4K upscaling, 2D-to-3D conversion, and a high-quality USB 2.0 digital-to-analog converter -- but what really makes the Oppo special is the sound. Pop the cover and look inside and you'll see why. Most of the 17-pound component's chassis space is devoted to the audio circuitry. That's nice, but the audio advantages will be completely irrelevant if you connect the BDP-105 to your receiver with a HDMI cable (the digital-to-analog conversion would then be handled in … Read more
Apologies for being a little tardy on updating our long-running list of must-have Blu-ray movies, but here it is, refreshed for 2013. This month's updates entries include "Alfred Hitchcock: The Masterpiece Collection," "The Avengers," "Finding Nemo," "Jaws," "Lawrence of Arabia," and "Titanic."
Though my face is at the top of the column, the list was compiled with input from editors John Falcone, Matthew Moskovciak, and David Katzmaier, who look at a lot of video content in their day-to-day testing of products. We also keep an eye on AVS Forum's Blu-ray picture-quality and audio-quality threads, and have always appreciated the site's tiered rating system.
This list is not set in stone, and we'll be adding and removing discs as new ones come out. As always, feel free to make comments and suggest your own personal favorites. They may get added to the list in the future. … Read more
The Woo Audio WA7 Fireflies is one of the most beautiful audio products I've ever used. For my money it approaches a level of design grace comparable to that of Apple products. The 5-inch cube headphone amplifier has two vacuum tubes protected by a thick glass cover. The WA7 also has a built-in 32-bit/192kHz USB digital-to-analog converter (DAC) and lots of custom-made parts, including dedicated nickel alloy output transformers. There's a 6.3mm jack for home-style headphones, and a 3.5mm jack for portable ones. That's noteworthy, as few headphone amps have both jack sizes. The … Read more
The first question is, what do you want from your hi-fi? Do you want to play LPs, CDs, or an occasional movie? Next, where will you put the speakers, and how large or small do they need to be? I'm writing this blog post for folks trying to put together the best-sounding hi-fi they can on a fixed budget. That's why I won't be covering wireless systems, because dollar for dollar, the better wired speakers always sound better than wireless models.
I've been listening to Jerry Harvey's custom-molded in-ear headphones for years. The very first one, the UE10, was a game changer; in 2006 it was the best sounding in-ear headphone I'd heard. Now with his new Freqphase JH13 and JH16 in-ears, Harvey's done it again. The performance gains in clarity, detail, resolution, and stereo imaging are huge -- the adrenaline-pumping sound of the music you love over a set of Harvey's headphones can't be matched by any other in-ear 'phones.
Years before he made headphones, Harvey mixed stage monitor sound for Kiss, Van Halen, … Read more
When it comes to choosing a bookshelf speaker, you're often forced to decide between one with a dock and one that supports Bluetooth.
Thankfully, you can have the best of both worlds. Today only, and while supplies last, Tech.woot has the refurbished XtremeMac Tango TRX Bluetooth speaker with 30-pin dock for $39.99, plus $5 for shipping. It originally sold for $179.99, and the best price I've seen elsewhere (for a new unit) is $99.
As you can see in the photo, the Tango TRX sports a dock that can accommodate nearly any iPhone, iPod, or … Read more
Audiobooks.com has lowered its subscription price, but now you can listen to only one or two books per month.
The new plans offer two different options. You can pay $14.95 per month to listen to one audiobook or $22.95 each month to hear up to two books. Previously, the site charged people $24.95 per month but gave them the ability to listen to an unlimited number of audiobooks for that fee.
Why the change? A spokesman for Audiobooks.com sent CNET the following statement:The switch from "all you can listen" to the new … Read more
ShiningMorning's Virtual Audio Streaming software creates a virtual sound card in your Windows system. It acts as a wrapper on your existing sound card, enhancing its capabilities and making it easy to record and stream whatever audio your system is playing, no matter what the source: microphone, media player, or external device. It also improves sound recording in Windows, even automatically fixing the "no Stereo Mix" problem in Windows 7 and Vista. It's free to try for 30 days, but the trial version places an audio "watermark" on the output.
Virtual Audio Streaming's … Read more