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Paul Ridden

Paul Ridden

While Paul is loath to reveal his age, he will admit to cutting his IT teeth on a TRS-80 (although he won't say which version). An obsessive fascination with computer technology blossomed from hobby into career before the desire for sunnier climes saw him wave a fond farewell to his native Blighty in favor of Bordeaux, France. He's now a dedicated newshound pursuing the latest bleeding edge tech for Gizmag.

Follow Paul:

— Electronics

Olympus VP-10 promises to rid voice recordings of rustle

By - June 25, 2015 6 Pictures

Take it from someone who knows, attending press conferences can sometimes be a bit of crush. Imagine the disappointment of finding enough room to finally sit down and type up some notes from a handheld audio recorder, only to find that the words are muffled behind sounds of rustling clothes or are not loud enough to register on the device. Olympus says that its pocket-friendly VP-10 audio recorder makes both issues a thing of the past.

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— Home Entertainment

Walker Audio lowers price of entry for audiophile disc spinners

By - June 24, 2015 5 Pictures

There are turntables and there are turntables. Living room decks by such manufacturers as Thorens, Music Hall, Project and Technics will likely be sufficient for the high quality audio needs of most mortal vinyl lovers. But for audiophiles with a fine-tuned ear and a bottomless wallet, names like the DaVinci, TechDAS, TriangleArt and Walker Audio will be more familiar. The latter's Proscenium turntables have been on the receiving end of numerous awards from industry experts and audio journalists since the release of the first version two decades ago. Now the premium audio equipment manufacturer has announced a new turntable named Procession that comes in at a fraction of the cost of the latest Proscenium – which essentially means US$45,000 instead of $110,000.

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— Home Entertainment

Floating Record makes spinning vinyl stand up and stand out

By - June 23, 2015 7 Pictures

According to Nielsen, US vinyl album sales have grown by 260 percent since 2009. So, if you want to get in with the hip 12-inch disc crowd but find that your home hi-fi system doesn't sport a turntable, some eye-catching help may be at hand. Gramovox, the Chicago-based firm behind the horny Bluetooth Gramophone from 2013, has designed a stylish new sound system that boasts audiophile-grade components and plays records vertically.

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— Wearable Electronics

Torque adds tunable twist to headphone modularity

By - June 22, 2015 13 Pictures

Back in April, Denmark's AIAIAI announced a new headphone line that allowed buyers to customize their preferred sound and look by swapping out components. Los Angeles-based Torque Audio has a similarly modular outlook to headphone design and has hit Kickstarter to try and bring its new flagship headphones to release. The t402v models feature a proprietary bio-cell diaphragm and will come with supra-aural and circumaurul ear pads that can be tuned for bass response.

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— Aircraft

E-Fan 2.0 makes podium appearance at Le Bourget

By - June 17, 2015 18 Pictures

When we first covered the news of the E-Fan's first public flight, Airbus was only showing an artist's impression of what the production model of the two-seater electric demonstrator could look like. But this year the company had a full-sized version on display at the 51st Paris Air Show. In addition to straining our ears to listen to hear the original aircraft in the air above Le Bourget, we got the opportunity to rub shoulders with the sleek and sexy E-Fan 2.0 electric pilot trainer.

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— Home Entertainment

Axiom Audio puts the power of Pi into new wireless speaker

By - June 12, 2015 6 Pictures

Canadian loudspeaker maker Axiom Audio reckons its new AxiomAir brings something new to the wireless speaker system table. It's been designed to liberate listeners from the single user, low powered, low fidelity confines of Bluetooth portable speakers into the higher quality streaming world of Wi-Fi. But what really sets this speaker apart is the fully functional Raspberry Pi computer beating at its heart. While this allows future Axiom updates to be installed with the touch of a button on the user interface, it also opens the door to user-created applications.

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— Music

OWOW puts digital music creation in the palm of your hand

By - June 11, 2015 11 Pictures

A company based in Eindhoven, the Netherlands, has spent the last 3 years designing, developing, tweaking and building what's described as a new breed of musical instruments. Just when the sonic scientists at Omnipresent World of Wizkids (OWOW) had reached a point where the five "smartly built, but stupidly simple to use" MIDI devices were ready for the production line, they ran out of money. So they've turned to Kickstarter to get the wob, wiggle, drum, pads and scan into the hands of players.

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— Electronics

It's touch and Go for Makey Makey

By - June 3, 2015 16 Pictures

At about the size of a credit card, the original Makey Makey (now called the Classic) isn't exactly a behemoth, but it's not really something you could wear around your neck or dangle from your ear either. Aiming for portability, the boffins at JoyLabz have redesigned the board, stripping it down to its bare essentials, then adding a magnet (so tinkerers can stick it a fridge door between uses) and some LEDs (for colorful visual feedback), and wrapped it in protective plastic bumpers. The Makey Makey Go is now about the size of a USB thumb drive and, like the original, can be used to turn everyday objects into touch-enabled "buttons" – everything from bananas to someone's ear to jello to a potted plant. So long as it's able to conduct even the tiniest amount of electricity, it's fair game for some Makey Makey magic.

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