I visited Stereo Buyers' Brooklyn headquarters to get a first-hand look at their gear. Located in Red Hook, the facility was flooded by Hurricane Sandy last summer, and most of the inventory was literally underwater. Stereo Buyers' Adam Wexler did his best to prepare before the storm hit, but his best line in recalling the disaster was, "I bet you didn't know that Wilson Audio Watt/Puppy 5 speakers (that weigh over 100 pounds) can float, but they can. It was crazy and depressing; the financial losses were a bummer." He didn't have flood insurance, but … Read more
Neil Young expects to launch Pono, a music service based on a new high-definition audio format that the rock musician is spearheading, early next year.
Young made the announcement in a Facebook post Tuesday, adding that the Pono team has been focused on fine-tuning the new format, which he said has "liberated the music of the artist from the digital file and restored it to its original artistic quality -- as it was in the studio."
Young also offered a little more insight into the process behind his new format.
"Pono starts at the source: artist-approved studio … Read more
If you're the kind of person who can't help but bemoan the dangers of a surveillance state since the NSA revelations this past summer, then Kapture might help bolster your theories.
Meant to be worn on your wrist at all times, the device -- which launched Tuesday on the Kickstarter crowd-funding site with a goal of raising $150,000 -- is perpetually recording the last 60 seconds of audio without the user having to do anything. With a simple tap, that time frame's contents are saved, sent to, and synced with your smartphone via Bluetooth. … Read more
This blog is all about finding great-sounding audio products, in every price range. In June I reported on the best-sounding headphone I've ever heard, the Abyss AB-1266, but not long after that I was knocked out by Sony's MDR-V6, and now I'm auditioning these surprisingly decent $15 Audio Technica ATH-CLR100 in-ear headphones.
Introduced earlier this year, this all-plastic design is incredibly light, just 3.4 grams. It has 8.5mm drivers, sports small, medium, and large silicone eartips, and the headphone comes with a round plastic case. Amazon sells it for around $12, and even with that … Read more
What if you could listen to music on a headset without putting anything into or over your ear canal?
It sounds counter-intuitive, but here's a concept that frees your ears to pick up ambient noise while you groove to your favorite tunes.
The new Zoom H6 Handy Recorder jams a lot of technology and features into a surprisingly compact device, and it sounds great. The H6 was designed for musicians, sound professionals, journalists, and videographers, but I'm sure there's a smattering of audiophiles who would really enjoy using this thing. I spent a few days recording street musicians performing in various parks around NYC, and one feature immediately stood out, the interchangeable microphone modules that plug into the top of the recorder. The H6 carries a retail price of $399, and that price includes two mic modules, X-Y, and MS (… Read more
Radical.FM is a free streaming-music app in the vein of Pandora and Spotify that gives you more control over your playlists than those apps, but interface problems and slow-to-react buttons and menus need work before it's ready for prime time.
Most of us have used streaming-audio apps in the past, whether live-radio apps like TuneIn or streaming-music mix makers like Pandora. But with such a crowded landscape for streaming audio, the only way for a new player to break in is by being clearly different.
Radical.FM seems like it has that kind of potential, but at this … Read more
Pioneer joins the all-too-short list of car audio manufacturers to support media playback and browsing on Android phones with the announcement and launch of its 2014 lineup of CD receivers: the DEH-X6600BS, DEH-X6600BT, DEH-X5600HD, DEH-X4600BT, DEH-X3600S, DEH-X3600UI, DEH-X2600UI, and FH-X500UI.
All eight models in the new 2014 lineup of Pioneer single-DIN DEH receivers (and the double-DIN FX-X500UI) are able to browse media stored on a USB-connected Android phone with the aid of the media transfer protocol (MTP), which has been adopted by the Android operating system as of version 4.0 to handle all file transfers. (Older Androids made use … Read more
Total Audio Converter offers all of the features, performance, and speed you'd need from an audio converter. It's one of the most complete conversion programs you can find and is a steal at its low price.
The free version of the program only lets you convert up to two thirds of the track, so you'll have to pay if you want the whole thing. The program doesn't support every format under the sun, but all of the most popular formats are here, such as MP3, MP4, WAV, FLAC, WMA, etc. Each one has its own button, … Read more