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.
Riding on the crest of a video teaser wave, Yamaha has revealed its new reface series mini keyboards. Described as portable yet powerful, the two synths, an organ and a piano give a respectful nod in the direction of classic Yamaha electronic keyboards, and boast tactile sound controls, onboard effects and built-in speakers.
Last October, guitarist Andy Alt shared his dream of giving six-string axes some extra bottom end with the crowdfunding community. Since the close of the successful campaign, he has made a few tweaks to A Little Thunder's design and functionality, chief among them being capacitive touch. Backers started receiving their pickups last month and now sales have opened up to everyone.
Rather than collect and treat the copious amount of pee produced by beer-swigging live music lovers, the organizers of last week's Roskilde Festival and the Danish Agriculture & Food Council opted to put all that liquid gold to good use. A beercycling project dubbed "From piss to pilsner" invited attendees to leave deposits for local farmers to use as fertilizer for barley crops grown to make beer.
These days, there seems to be a smartphone or tablet app for just about everything you might want to do, be it detecting cosmic rays, getting language help or learning to play an instrument. The One piano learning system also has an iOS/Android app at its heart, but students learn to play on a real piano with the help of synced LED lights. Already a best seller in China, the One Music Group is looking for similar success in the American marketplace and has opened an office in San Francisco to bring its One piano and learning app to Stateside students.
About this time last year, a pint-sized mashup of projector and Android computer hit crowdfunding portal Indiegogo. The TouchPico allowed users to activate icons thrown on the wall or whiteboard using a stylus-like pointing device, effectively turning any flat surface into a giant touchscreen display. We got a chance to see the pre-release prototype in action at IFA 2014, engaging the company's Slava Solonitsyn in a quick fruity game on a nearby wall. The newly-named Touchjet Pond started shipping last month, and one of the first units off the production line made its way to Gizmag for review.
Looking for a way to add more presence to his solo performances, singer/songwriter Pete Roe invented the Submarine. It's a pickup for two strings that, much like A Little Thunder, can be used to add some extra low end wallop to an electric or acoustic guitar or the signal could be routed through an effects pedal chain or separate amp for some out there sonic melding.
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.
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.
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.
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.