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Audioholics Reviews and News from Audioholics

Where audio and video equipment undergoes rigorous objective and subjective tests by our staff, ensuring that marketing slogans aren't the only guidelines for your home theater choices.

Last Build Date: Fri, 24 Mar 2017 12:00:00 -0000


Fluance DB12 $300 12" Ported Subwoofer Preview

Fri, 24 Mar 2017 12:00:00 -0000

Those looking to beef up the bass in their bookshelf speaker system on a tight budget would do well to give Fluance's new DB12 subwoofer a try. The DB12 is an unusually compact subwoofer for a ported 12” design. Its polite size and refined finish allow it to fit in very aesthetically demanding situations. Check out our preview on this compact sub for $300- Shipping included! Bass enthusiasts serious about sound will want to pick up a pair of these subs for improved bass response and output for the entire seated area.

HiFiMAN SuperMini DAP Preview

Mon, 20 Mar 2017 23:00:00 -0000

Looking for a super light weight super high quality portable player? HiFiMAN may have just your thing with their new SuperMini digital audio player. In addition to offering exceptional sound quality, the HiFiMAN Supermini supports all lossless file formats including DSD. With expandable memory up to 256 GB via micro SD card, 22 hours of playtime, and a MSRP of $399 this might be the best all around lightweight DAP. Read on to find out more.

Wikileaks: The CIA is Spying on All Your Electronics - And it's Getting Weird

Thu, 16 Mar 2017 05:00:00 -0000

The latest round of Wikileaks is called Year Zero and includes over 8,000 pages of details about how the CIA is spying on just about anything with an Internet connection. Its a sobering prospect that exploits to only a handful of operating systems, including iOS and Android, and provides backdoor access to just about everything that connects to the Internet. Your phone, TV and set top boxes are child's play - the CIA now has access to weaponized hacks on any Internet connected machinery or vehicle with electronic controls.

Legacy Foundation Subwoofer Preview

Tue, 14 Mar 2017 12:00:00 -0000

Legacy Audio's new 'Foundation' subwoofer packs a huge punch in a small footprint. Two active 12" long-throw woofers backed by 1,000 watts of amplification and coupled to two 12" passive radiators with an enormous 4" peak-to-peak travel are packed in a cabinet that only uses 1.5 square feet of floor space. The aptly-named 'Foundation' subwoofer can serve as a bedrock for your sound system, but so much power in such a small package should come with a warning that if it is pushed hard enough, it may create cracks in the foundation of any structure it is used in. Proceed with caution!

Basic Subwoofer Setup Guide NOT for Dummies

Sun, 12 Mar 2017 18:00:00 -0000

Anytime I see a book on a complex topic that attempts to disseminate the subject material in layman terms for the average reader using the word “Dummies” in the title, I cringe. Realizing a large portion of our readership are essential enthusiasts when it comes to home theater, but also intelligent readers, I conjured up this article and YouTube video for those wanting to get a good grip on how to properly set up and integrate a subwoofer into their new home theater system. Learn how to place and configure your sub and A/V receiver in layman's terms to ensure you get the most out of your A/V system.

ATSC 3.0: Cord Cutter’s Dream or Tiered Internet Nightmare?

Fri, 10 Mar 2017 06:00:00 -0000

The FCC has approved an innovation in digital broadcast television that could change everything you thought you knew about network TV. ATSC 3.0 is the first fully interactive, 2-way, IP-based broadcast standard that will behave more like a lightweight Internet than the passive, one-way broadcasts we know today. It all sounds so great! When content from every corporation that wanted to crush the Net Neutrality Act rides into your home on a mini-Internet approved and subsidized by the same government that wants to spy on you and store all your personal information for later use against you - what could possibly go wrong?

Massdrop & Fostex Purpleheart TH-X00 Headphones Review

Tue, 07 Mar 2017 23:00:00 -0000

Massdrop is an online commerce platform that has been teaming up with consumer electronics manufacturers to produce some great equipment at very reasonable prices. One of the biggest hits of 2016 was the Fostex TH-X00 series of headphones. Basically Fostex wanted to build a great pair of headphones as the successor to some of the legendary headphones the company built to be sold under the Denon brand. We took a closer look at the Fostex TH-X00 Purpleheart in this review.

Bowers & Wilkins DB Series Subwoofers Preview

Fri, 03 Mar 2017 13:00:00 -0000

B&W released their new line of DB Subs and they sure have packed a lot of new technology into a small and elegant package. Of course, such a task is not an inexpensive one with the DB1D, DB2D, and DB3D priced at $4,500, $3,500, and $2,500 respectively. Each model features dual opposing drivers to cancel cabinet resonances. Inexpensive these subwoofers are not, but those seeking high performance from an attractive cabinet filled with cutting-edge technology, the new DB subwoofers from B&W might be well worth the cost.

Sound United Acquires D&M Group (Denon,Marantz, Boston)

Wed, 01 Mar 2017 22:45:00 -0000

Sound United LLC, parent company to Polk Audio, Definitive Technology, and Polk BOOM, today announced it has completed the acquisition of the D+M Group, owner of the Denon, HEOS by Denon, Marantz, and Boston Acoustics brands. The D+M Group is the largest supplier of audio/video receivers worldwide and a leader in wireless multi-room audio. Sound United is the largest supplier of loudspeakers in North America and a leading supplier of sound bars and wireless music systems. For now, no immediate changes are planned for the brands, but what direction will this eventually take them? Only time or a lucky person with access to a DeLorean with flux capactitors can tell.

Control4 Acquires Triad Speakers

Tue, 28 Feb 2017 20:06:51 -0000

Control4 Corporation, a leading global provider of smart home solutions, today announced the acquisition of Triad Speakers, Inc., a leader in advanced audio technology with best-in-class, customizable speaker-solutions. Nearly the entire Triad team will be joining Control4, including founder Larry Pexton, as well as the Triad’s R&D, manufacturing, and custom-services employees, all of whom will continue operating from Triad’s existing facility in Portland, Oregon. What does this mean for Triad? Read on to find out.

Fluance AB40 3D Surround Soundbase Preview

Mon, 27 Feb 2017 06:00:00 -0000

It's a soundbar- No! It's a T.V. stand- No! It's a soundbase! Fluance made it's contribution to the dwindling array of soundbases recently with their AB40 Soundbase. For those of you not familiar with soundbases, they're kind of like a soundbar, but your T.V. sit on TOP of them instead of the speakers sitting in front of the T.V. or behind. With 3D surround sound from a larger sturdier enclosure and a price point of $200, The Fluance AB40 might be right for your small space- if your T.V. will fit on it.

Yamaha RX-A860 AVENTAGE 7.2 Atmos/DTS:X A/V Receiver Review

Wed, 22 Feb 2017 14:00:00 -0000

There's a lot to like about the Yamaha AVENTAGE RX-A860 7.2CH Atmos/DTS:X AV receiver. It's packed with excellent, easy to use networking features, especially MusicCAST which allows you to manage all of your music via mobile or from your PC. It supports the latest in immersive audio formats, and has a wonderful easy to use GUI and mobile App. However, the RX-A860 does fall short in some key performance areas such as power delivery that gives us some reservations on how best to use this product. Read our review and check out our test report and recommendations to find out more.

Fluance Signature Series Speaker Contest Giveaway!

Wed, 22 Feb 2017 03:40:00 -0000

To show some love to our loyal Audioholics readers, we’re partnering with Fluance to give away one pair of their Signature Series Hi-Fi Three-Way Floorstanding Speakers. Simply register to receive the Audioholics and Fluance newsletters, and reply to the prequalifier questions in our related forum thread for your chance to win these brand new tower speakers. Deadline to enter is March 20, 2017. Remember, you gotta be in it to win it!

KEF Ci5160REF $10k/ea In Wall Speaker Preview

Mon, 20 Feb 2017 13:00:00 -0000

Looking for a great in wall speaker for your better than cinema quality home theater? Check out the new Ci5160REF-THX in wall speakers from KEF. With four 6.5" bass drivers and KEF's awesome 5 inch MF/HF Uni-Q array this might be the speaker for your needs. But with a price point of $10,000 each are they worth it? Read on to find out.

RSL CG3, CG23, Speedwoofer 10S 5.1 Speaker System Review

Thu, 16 Feb 2017 23:00:00 -0000

We took the new CG3, CG23, and Speedwoofer 10S system for an extended spin and came away with our jaws ajar. RSL has done it again. Anchored by the patented Compression Guide technology and for almost half the cost, RSL's CG3 5.1 Home Theater System comes darn close to the performance and refinement of their acclaimed CG4 system. If you thought that a small-sized system couldn't pump out big, dynamic, and engaging sound then think again. You'll be disabused of any previous conceptions you might have. If you're an audiophile or cinemaphile on a budget, Christmas just arrived early for 2017. Read on and see why we liked this system so much.

Atlantic Technology SB8 Subwoofer Preview

Tue, 14 Feb 2017 17:00:00 -0000

Looking for a small sub with respectable performance at a great price? The SB8 Subwoofer by Atlantic Technology is a diminutive subwoofer that is essentially a 13” cube. The SB8 tries to clear the hurdle of getting intense low-frequency output from a small container by using a long-throw 8” woofer in conjunction with a healthy-sized port. Read our preview of the SB8 to see if this $500 compact subwoofer is right for you.

Is Your TV Watching You? Vizio Busted for Spying on Customers

Mon, 13 Feb 2017 00:00:00 -0000

Vizio has always been a good TV in terms of bang-for-buck. You’d be hard pressed to beat Vizio over the last decade. But on February 6, Vizio went from being the toast of TV buyers everywhere to an electronic spy inside the homes of millions. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced that Vizio will pay out a settlement of $2.2 million for illegally selling data collected on some 11-million consumers including viewing habits as well as demographic info on customers. Learn how to protect yourself from your own smart TV, because it's not just Vizio, just about brand of smart TV has similar capabilities.

JBL Everest Elite 700 Headphones Platinum Review

Wed, 08 Feb 2017 16:00:00 -0000

To celebrate its 70th anniversary, JBL has launched a new “platinum” variation of one of their finest wireless headphones made, the JBL Everest Elite 700. Platinum may be nothing more than a fresh coat of paint on a great pair of headphones that has been JBL's flagship in the wireless category for two years. But, what Platinum really gives us is a chance to reflect on the company's storied history, a history that is still being written with the sale of JBL's parent company, Harman to Samsung. Does the Everest Elite 700 still hold its place among the best of the full-sized wireless headphones? We shall see.

Pioneer Elite SX-S30 Slim Stereo Network Receiver Preview

Tue, 07 Feb 2017 06:00:00 -0000

Pioneer announced its new SX-S30 Slim Stereo Network Receiver. Offering a wealth of connectivity options, the SX-S30 packs high-res sound and functionality into a slim, compact receiver that fits almost anywhere. The feature set is great allowing you to access all of your high res audio from mobile or networked devices. But what about the power section? So many receivers these days are skimping on power and inflating their ratings. Is Pioneer doing this with their new SX-S30? Will it even matter to consumers that care more about features than power? Read on to find out.

Super Bowl LI: Fox Sports Wins With a Cord Cutting Touchdown!

Sun, 05 Feb 2017 04:45:00 -0000

Listen up, rookies! Team cable is on the defense as cord cutting threatens a deep run into their end-zone. This ain’t no puppy show! To get your head into the big game this year, you’re gonna’ need your grit, your wit and a high speed Internet connection. Oh, and a set-top streaming device like Android/AppleTV, Amazon Fire TV, Windows, Roku or a game console wouldn’t hurt either. We examine how more and more people are streaming the Super Bowl LI this year.

Monoprice Monolith K-BᾹS Bookshelf Speakers Review

Fri, 03 Feb 2017 15:00:00 -0000

The new Monolith K-BAS bookshelf speakers from Monoprice achieve a rare feat for their price and size: true sub 50 Hz bass extension. That is no small task for a medium-sized, $500/pr bookshelf speaker using only a 5.25" woofer. Monoprice has thrown their hat into the hi-fi speaker market, but does their K-BAS speaker do more than just excellent bass extension or does the good news stop there? Read our review of the K-BAS speakers to find out!

Fluance DB10 $200 10" Subwoofer Preview

Tue, 31 Jan 2017 01:00:00 -0000

Looking for a 10" subwoofer for you home theater room at a ridiculously low price? Canadian home audio equipment manufacturer Fluance recently announced the launch of an inexpensive 10” ported subwoofer, the DB10. Despite its relatively small size and low price, the DB10 claims an extended response down to low 20Hz region! That is a lofty claim for a $200 subwoofer shipped to your door. But, if it can go anywhere near 20Hz at meaningful output levels, that would be a significant accomplishment for the money. Check out our preview on this new and exciting product from Fluance to see if it might be right for you.

The Death of 3D TV

Sun, 29 Jan 2017 14:00:00 -0000

The last manufacturers of 3D TV, Sony and LG, are set to end production on 3D sets this year. But the demise of 3D TV has been a long time coming. As flat panel HDTV became more and more affordable, 3D may have been seen as a the killer feature that got customers buying a new round of premium priced TVs. But 3D, a side-show at best, was miscast as a premium feature, and studios did it no favors by launching a flood of mediocre 3D movies that did little to showcase the standard's strength. It's no wonder 3D has such a bad reputation with consumers. RIP 3D TV.

Wisdom Audio Sage Superbar Preview

Thu, 26 Jan 2017 06:00:00 -0000

So you bought a new giant 70" 4K Ultra HD Television for Christmas and the sound just isn't up to par? Sure you could get a 48" soundbar to supplement, but why waste the other 22" of space under the TV? Wisdom Audio has you covered with their NEW Customizable Sage Super Soundbars. With four different models to choose from, custom finishes, and custom lengths from 38" to 98" these new soundbars may truly be "Super". Just remember with all of these custom options comes a custom price. Read on to find out how much customization will cost you.

Beam Me Up, Scotty! Acoustic Tractor Beam Now a DIY Project

Mon, 23 Jan 2017 18:00:00 -0000

The tractor beam has long been the stuff of science fiction, but it turns out that this technical milestone of nerd culture already exists thanks to developments in acoustic technology. Today, you can find instructions online to build your own tractor beam with a 3D printer. However, because it uses sound, the technology is limited to very small but visible objects. But it’s already being used to study the effects on life in space and shows potential as a component in a future medical tricorder. This is just another example of technology predicted by Star Trek.

2017 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) Coverage Page

Sun, 22 Jan 2017 02:00:00 -0000

We're starting off 2017 with a bang by bringing you the latest and greatest AV Electronics product coverage announced at CES in Las Vegas. Check out the latest speakers and subwoofers from Revel, Goldenear, Elac, Emotiva, SVS, etc and impressive new Soundbars from Polk, Pioneer and Nakamichi. Details emerge on the new 16CH Atmos/DTS:X Emotiva RMC-1 Processor and we've got some cool stuff to show you in wireless and cordless Bluetooth headphones and developments in UHD HDTV.

Emotiva BasX S8, S10, and S12 Subwoofer Preview

Fri, 20 Jan 2017 06:00:00 -0000

Emotiva, the company that’s known for its high quality amplifiers at affordable prices released three newly enhanced subwoofers at the 2017 CES in Las Vegas, Nevada. The BasX line come in 8", 10", and 12" models and with pricing at $199, $299, and $399, respectively. Emotiva is making a convincing argument of getting a quality subwoofer at a great price has never been easier. Check out our preview for the BasX S8, S10, and S12 to see what you get as you progress through their model lineup.

Nakamichi Shockwafe Ultra 9.2 Soundbar Preview

Wed, 18 Jan 2017 06:00:00 -0000

Has audio company Nakamichi gone too far with their new 9.2 soundbar, the Shockwafe Ultra? Check out this preview of the new and exciting 9.2 soundbar system that eliminates speaker wires and minimizes power cords. Dual subs, 4 modular surrounds, and an 8 speaker soundbar (total of 18 speakers) for around $1000? This might be the surround system you've been waiting for. Read on to find out.

SVS PB-2000 Subwoofer Giveaway!

Mon, 16 Jan 2017 06:24:11 -0000

To show some love to our loyal Audioholics readers, we’re partnering with SVS to give away a PB-2000, 500 Watt DSP Controlled, 12” Ported Subwoofer! The award-winning SVS PB-2000 Subwoofer adapts technology from the legendary Ultra Series to take the title as best ported subwoofer under $1,000. To enter, simply register to receive the SVS email newsletter and why you want to win it in our forum thread. Then respond using that same address if you are contacted as the winner. It’s just that easy. Enter now before Feb 5th for your change to win!

Polk Signa S1 Universal TV Sound Bar and Wireless Subwoofer System

Sun, 15 Jan 2017 02:00:00 -0000

With soundbars at every booth at the Consumer Electronic Show in Las Vegas, Nevada vying for your attention, will Polk Audio's Signa S1 be able to break out? For $179 not only do you get an impressive 5.1 slim soundbar that connects easily through an optical cable (included), you also get a wireless sub for extra bass. What more could you ask for? Check out our preview of the Polk Audio Signa S1 to see if it might be your new soundbar.

Norway Kills The FM Radio Star – Could It Happen Here?

Fri, 13 Jan 2017 01:00:00 -0000

Norway became the first country to begin a campaign of shutting down FM radio signals this week. The nation’s “Radio Digitization” program began on 1/11 at 11:11 am – a start time with a very “digital” feel. The FM shutdown will run through 2017 county by county, until the last FM signal is squelched and the airwaves over Norway go cold and silent in mid-December. Is Norway the first of what may eventually become a global push to 86 FM forever?

Polk Signature Series Speakers Preview

Tue, 10 Jan 2017 23:00:00 -0000

We got a glimpse of Polk's Signature Speakers series at the CEDIA last fall, but our second viewing at CES in Las Vegas, Nevada really wowed us. The whole line of Signature Speakers from Polk Audio looks like it will make a fantastic setup for any audiophiles listening needs from two-channel to a full DTS:X immersive surround sound home theater room. With 8 styles to choose from, this reasonably priced but high quality speaker line might be for you. Read on to find out more.

GoldenEar Triton Reference Series Tower Speaker Preview

Mon, 09 Jan 2017 15:00:00 -0000

Speaker company Goldenear has made some big impacts in the audio world in the last three years with their line of Triton speakers. Their Triton One came out in 2014 with the goal of making a great speaker for the fiscally responsible. In fact, the company slogan “We make high end affordable” describes this speaker line to a T. Goldenear introduced their Triton Reference edition speaker at the CES 2017 last week. Read our preview and demo results of this fantastic new product from Goldenear and our little comparison to their Triton 1 to see what you’re getting when stepping up to their new flagship speaker system.

Emotiva RMC-1 16CH Atmos/DTS:X AV Processor Preview

Sun, 08 Jan 2017 02:00:00 -0000

Emotiva announced their long awaited RMC-1 Dolby Atmos/DTS:X AV Processor, a no-holds-barred model that supports full 4K UHD video, with high speed video switching. Armed with 16 fully balanced channels for Dolby Atmos and DTS-X object-oriented surround sound, including an all-analog preamplifier section, precision 32-bit AD/DA conversion, and an advanced 4K UHD video management system the RMC-1 leaves nothing for the audiophile or videophile to desire other than to wait for its unannounced shipping date. Read on for more details.

Revel Performa3 Be Concept Loudspeakers Preview

Sat, 07 Jan 2017 00:30:00 -0000

Revel by Harman today previewed the Performa3 Be concept loudspeakers, based on the award-winning Performa3 Series product range, at CES 2017. Based on Revel’s Performa3 F208 and M106 models, the Performa3 Be concepts include two new models: the F208Be 3-way floorstanding loudspeaker and M106Be 2-way bookshelf loudspeaker. The concepts feature the latest waveguide geometry, Beryllium and Deep Ceramic Composite (DCC) transducer technology and premium crossover network designs. While we were already big fans of the Performa3 series, the addition of these upgrades in this concept series just makes our audio taste buds salivate.

Pioneer Elite FS-EB70 Network Atmos Sound Bar System Preview

Fri, 06 Jan 2017 03:25:00 -0000

Supplying surround sound in a slim design is Pioneer's Elite® FS-EB70 Network Sound Bar System which includes the 3.1.2 Atmos soundbar, amplifier module and wireless 8" subwoofer all for $1,000. This was one of the most impressive soundbar systems we've heard last year at CEDIA so we are excited that its finally a released product so we can do a formal review. Read on for more details.

HDMI Forum Announces Version 2.1 Of the HDMI Specification

Thu, 05 Jan 2017 05:25:00 -0000

HDMI Forum, Inc announced the upcoming release of Version 2.1 of the HDMI specification that supports higher video resolutions and refresh rates including 8K60 and 4K120, Dynamic HDR, and increased bandwidth with a new 48G cable. Backwards compatibility is supported with earlier versions of the HDMI specification. The new spec will be available to all HDMI 2.0 Adopters by Q2 2017. See what other benefits HDMI 2.0 provides by reading on...

RBH Sound I-12/e Ported Subwoofer Review

Tue, 03 Jan 2017 06:00:00 -0000

For years I've been suggesting that RBH Sound build an affordable HUGE subwoofer to compete with the ID subwoofer greats. Not only has RBH succeeded with the I-12 and I-12/e subwoofers, but they've managed to do so in an attractive package that goes beyond just the standard square box. Both subs feature the same 12" aluminum driver while the I-12/e sports a 500 watt amplifier and DSP boost to earn our Large Bassaholics rating. Read on to find out more and be sure to check out our YouTube video preview.

Goodbye 2016: Lemmy to George Michael - The Year the Music Died

Sat, 31 Dec 2016 16:00:00 -0000

It's been a tough year of loss for so many of the musicians we love, especially those that grew up in the 80s and revered them as icons. Yet, I know it’s ridiculous to blame the arbitrary goal posts in time we call a year for the loss of the many beloved celebrities gone in 2016. I’m certain our perception of 2016 is skewed, yet I can't help but be glad to see an end to this year. Rest in peace 2016. And good riddance.

Fluance Signature Series 3-Way Floorstanding Speakers Review

Wed, 28 Dec 2016 17:00:00 -0000

The Fluance Signature Series Hi-Fi Three-Way Floorstanding speakers were recently relaunched after significant improvements were made to its crossover. This large tower speaker uses two 8" woofers, a fiber-woven 5.25" midwoofer, and a silk-dome tweeter in a wave-guide, and it promises serious bass extension well below 40 Hz. This impressive driver array is set in a gloss black front baffle with some stylish touches that belie the very affordable speaker cost. Initial enthusiasm about the earlier version of the Signature Floorstanding speakers gave way to mixed reactions due to a problematic crossover, but we have the redesigned version in our hands. So, let's see how it performs in our listening tests and subjective measurements to determine if this is the best $700 deal for tower speakers today.