Is the market's roller-coaster ride freaking you out? Need a little diversion? Indulge yourself with a dose of high-end audio bliss from Peachtree Audio.
Check out the Decco--a stereo vacuum tube amplifier with a built-in digital-to-analog converter with USB, Toslink, and coaxial digital connectivity. And since some music lovers are still listening to analog sources they gave the Decco a pair of old school stereo inputs to accommodate a cassette deck and maybe an AM/FM radio.
I listened to the Decco with a pair of compact Era Design 4 Satellite speakers. Hook up chores via USB were dead … Read more
Later this week, I'm off for a trip to Japan. I never go anywhere without my iPhone anymore. Japan will be no exception. But I will be taking the phone with some trepidation. Knowing that international charges can be exorbitant, I've spent a good deal of time determining what, if anything, I could do to keep costs to a minimum. To save you from having to do the same legwork, here's what I learned:
Q. What's the executive summary?
A. The cheapest thing you can do, by far, is leave your phone … Read more
Vacuum tube amplifiers are the Holy Grail for a lot of audiophiles, but they tend to be a lot more expensive than solid-state amps.
Priced at $1,295, the A-50T is one of the most affordable all-tube integrated amplifiers on the market, but I wasn't thinking about that as I ran my fingers over its half-inch thick front panel and fondled the beautifully machined knobs, or admired the quality of the rear panel's RCA jacks and hefty, gold-plated speaker wire binding posts. It's beautiful and the A-50T's quality is on par with amps that sell for $2,000 or more.
I reviewed the Cayin for Playback magazine a few months ago, and you can read the full review here.
Cayin is one of China's oldest and largest high-end audio manufacturers; they're justifiably proud of the fact that they build every significant part of the A-50T in-house. Got a turntable? The A-50T can be ordered with a built-in phono preamp for an extra $250; that still leaves three line-level inputs. … Read more
The App Store is no doubt one of the best things to have happened to the iPhone (and the iPod touch). Users are happily adding a wide array of apps to their devices, usually with little or no difficulty. Still, occasionally things go wrong. At such times, beyond the standard troubleshooting advice you'll find here at MacFixIt, it pays to know at least a bit about what's going on "under-the hood." Here's a Q&A detailing 5 things you should definitely know:
1. Where are iPhone apps actually stored on … Read more
Apple is doing a good job at driving developers to circumvent the official App Store sales mechanism and motivating users to jailbreak their iPhones. The company has rejected another useful application, Angelo DiNardi's MailWrangler, because it "duplicates the functionality of the built-in iPhone application Mail."
In a post to his blog, DiNardi says his application, which allows users to add and access multiple Gmail accounts "simply directly loading and showing Gmail inside of an application," adding "How you can confuse Gmail with Mail.app I?… Read more
Amazon.com really knows how to treat its customers.
Although I've read a few dozen books on my Kindle by now, my use of it is erratic. I use it heavily for days or weeks at a time, then set it aside for a while to address the stack of paper books by my nightstand. (When Montalvo Systems shut down, I had two 2.5-foot stacks of unread books. After a long summer of unemployment, the unread stack is down to a mere five titles.)
Last Tuesday, I found an e-book I wanted to read, so I got out the Kindle and saw it was dead. (The battery lasts only a few days even if I'm not using it, which really isn't good enough.) I charged it overnight and moved the book onto the Kindle on Wednesday. Later that day when I wanted to read the book, I found the Kindle was out of juice already.
I charged it overnight again (with the radio off in case it was having some kind of issue), forgot about it Thursday and remembered it this morning. But it was dead again. I started it charging again before going out to a lunch interview. When I returned, I turned the unit on and just sort of kept an eye on it, pressing buttons occasionally to keep it mostly awake while doing some other work on my computer.
The battery ran down in less than two hours.
It's the classic conundrum: everybody wants the smallest possible speakers and subwoofer, but nobody wants to give up sound quality. Then reality sets in and you hear the size constraints taking their toll on the sound.
Namely, little speakers don't make bass, and even bolstered by a subwoofer, the bass and oomph limitations become painfully obvious with action packed films like Master & Commander.
Two Canadian speaker companies, Energy and Mirage, believe they have devised effective engineering solutions to the size problem. They were in Manhattan last week to show-off their itsy-bitsy creations, and I have to say … Read more