Considering its full plate of goodies--built-in Blu-ray player, iPod dock, and the capability to stream Netflix movies and Pandora's online music service--the $800 price tag on Samsung's HT-BD8200 sound bar is quite reasonable. But that's not to say it won't be a tough sell in these economically anxious times. And that's where the new HT-WS1 comes in. The smaller sound bar is strictly audio-only--no Blu-ray, no DVD, no video connectivity whatsoever. It's more of a glorified TV speaker, accepting either an analog stereo or digital-optical input (it can decode standard Dolby Digital and DTS … Read more
The wireless craze is spreading fast and furious, with standalone subwoofers being the latest A/V product to join the fray.
The new Polk Audio PSWi225 (PDF) bucks the trend by featuring an external 2.4GHz radio frequency transmitter and integrated receiver to deliver a hassle-free bass boombox. To push the easy-to-set up proposition one step further, the PSWi225's transmitter has automatic input-sensing capability that seamlessly toggles between its analog stereo and sub (LFE) inputs.
The compact (about 12 inches by 13 inches by 12 inches), but powerful 100W PSWi225 is priced at $399.
If you ever wanted a Bang & Olufsen wall-mountable system but couldn't afford one, iLuv will be offering the poor man's version this May when it releases the iMM9500 Vertical 4CD/MP3 Hi-Fi Audio System with Subwoofer. No word yet on its price, but it has a built-in iPod/iPhone dock and a four-disc MP3 CD player. Here are the basic specifications that iLuv is serving up.
Works with iPhone and iPod--plays and charges 4-MP3 CD/audio playback system with universal dock for iPod 2.1 channel speakers Plays MP3, WMA files on SD/MMC cards and USB … Read more
Subwoofers do bass, it's their thing. That's easy enough to understand, but even if you've picked out a great sub, there's no guarantee you'll wind up with great bass in your room.
Why's that you ask? Room acoustics are tricky to understand, and picking the right spot for the sub is key. I've covered this before in my Subwoofer Setup Guide blog, but this time I'd like to take a different approach--using two or more subs to smooth out bass-busting room anomalies.
"Standing waves" within the room can cause large … Read more
Danley Sound Labs' Matterhorn Subwoofer may be the world's biggest--at least I hope it is. The mother of all subs has 40,000 watts of power, and the whole thing is built into a 20x8x8 foot shipping container. I guess that makes it easy to return when you blow it up! It looks like too much of a good thing to me.
More is just more; it's not necessarily better. True, the more drivers a sub has the lower the distortion, but I think the Matterhorn may have passed the point of diminishing returns. Just kidding, the Matterhorn … Read more
Most people love surround sound, but can't stand all the messy wires required to make it work. Vizio's new Jive SV5.1 Enhancement kit attempts to solve that problem with a wireless subwoofer that's placed in the back of the room and feeds two rear speakers--eliminating the need to run wires from the front of your home theater to the back. The Jive SV5.1 integrates with your current stereo TV speakers, adding a center channel in the front, and the aforementioned wireless subwoofer and rear speakers in the back. While that's great in terms of … Read more
Remember how every stomp by the T-Rex in Jurassic Park caused a puddle of water to vibrate? Now you can replicate the same heart-pumping effects at home with the JL Audio Gotham G213 subwoofer. This no-holds-barred goliath packs a pair of oversized 13.5-inch drivers powered by a meaty 3,800W amplifier. That's easily more than three times the juice pumped out by an average A/V receiver found in Asia.
Unadulterated brute muscle aside, this beautifully crafted, glossy-black piece also has a built-in audio equalization function. Dubbed "ARO" or Automatic Room Optimization, it smooths out the … Read more
If you're of a certain vintage, you may remember an old TV commercial and print ad campaign from Maxell that featured gale-force winds blowing from a stereo. That's the first thing that came to mind upon viewing this weird subwoofer from Eminent Technology.
The "Thigpen Rotary Woofer," which the company bills as "the world's first true infrasonic home audio or home theater woofer," looks more like an electric fan than a piece of audio equipment. Here's what the propeller supposedly does: "If you want to hear and feel the 4-5 hertz … Read more