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Hi-fi

Panasonic's SC-MAX650 Extra-Large Audio System

Panasonic has announced a big and colorful music system that can deliver 2,300 watts of crystal clear RMS oomph. The SC-MAX650 Extra-Large Audio System certainly lives up to its name, featuring huge 4-way floor-standing speakers with a prism color light show that moves and swirls in time with the music, and a rather chunky main unit built around full digital amplification in a tri-amp configuration.  Read More

Marshall Headphones and Zound Industries have unveiled the Hanwell, a new Marshall-branded...

For the last half-century, Marshall Amps have helped shape the sound of modern music. They've traveled on the Highway to Hell with AC/DC, been on the receiving end of some Monterey grinding from Jimi Hendrix and have even shared the stage with God himself, but now the iconic brand is heading to our living rooms with the launch of the Hanwell. Developed in partnership with Marshall Headphones and Zound Industries, the new active loudspeaker is the first home audio product to sport the Marshall script logo and continues the late Jim Marshall's legacy of loud.  Read More

ASUS has announced a new Plus Edition version of its Xonar Essence One external digital-an...

ASUS has announced a new Plus Edition version of its Xonar Essence One external digital-analog converter (DAC) and headphone amplifier that offers audio lovers even more control over the sound they hear. The only real change to the setup is the addition of an op-amp swap kit that gives users another five unique tonal customization options.  Read More

PSB Speakers has launched its first headphones – the Music for You (M4U) 2 Active Noise Ca...

Canadian high-end loudspeaker manufacturer PSB Speakers has announced its first dip into the headphone market with the release of its Music for You (M4U) 2 Active Noise Canceling, over-the-ear headphones. Built for comfort as well as true-to-nature, hi-fidelity sound quality, the closed back, circumaural cans feature 40mm dynamic drivers, audio-enhancing amplifier technology, and an ergonomic four-point gyroscopic ear pad mount that's said to automatically adjust to the precise contours of the wearer's head.  Read More

digiZoid has released version two of its Zo personal subwoofer, and Gizmag's Paul Ridden h...

Almost two years ago I reported being very impressed by the sound sculpturing capabilities of the Zo Personal Subwoofer. digiZoid has now released version 2, and brought some significant upgrades to the pocket-friendly headphone amp. With so many quality dedicated digital music players (the Cowon C2 or the Colorfly C4, for instance) and high end smartphones already offering pretty decent audio reproduction, is it worth laying out extra cash for sonic enhancement technology that sits between device and earphones? I've been giving a review unit a good testing over the last week or so in an attempt to answer that very question.  Read More

Griffin Technology has previewed its new Twenty Audio Amplifier for Airport Express at CES...

Griffin Technology has given visitors to CES 2012 a quick preview of a new audio amplifier that uses Apple's Airport Express to offer untethered digital playback from iTunes through existing non-powered speakers. The low profile amp captures streaming audio from any AirPlay-enabled source, decodes it and then sends the lossless, amplified sound through the speakers.  Read More

The Colorfly Pocket Hi-Fi C4 pro is the first portable player capable of handling 24-bit/1...

The modern smartphone has quickly become an essential part of modern living. It's a powerful portable computer, a high resolution camera, and a mobile communications center. However, if you're of the school who thinks that just because such a device can also play music, there's no need to spend good money on a separate audio player - the Colorfly Pocket Hi-Fi C4 pro may well be the dedicated music player to change your mind. Hidden within a gorgeous walnut outer shell with hand-carved motif and controlled by deliciously old-school physical buttons and sliding volume pot, the black circuit board heart of this music player is home to some top notch tech with one purpose - to deliver audiophile-pleasing, Hi-Fi-quality audio.  Read More

Two Woo Audio WA-234 MONO mono-block headphone/speaker amplifiers

Actually it's two US$5,000 amps because these rather spectacular looking beasts are mono-blocks. They are two completely separate, but matched, mono amplifiers. Now it's no secret that the world of audiophile hi-fi sound systems can be a place of strange voodoo and esoterica - where the Law of Diminishing Returns becomes a way of life for deluded males of a certain age (never women it seems) but let's check our cynicism at the door for the moment. There is something interesting going on here and it may just turn out that at $10,000 for the pair, these amps are a (relative) bargain.  Read More

Toshiba has slammed a pair of Harman/Kardon speakers into its new mini NB520 netbook, whic...

Research has shown that over 80 percent of netbook owners believe that good sound is important, yet I think it's fair to say that most netbook speakers are not really very good – offering about the same audio output quality as a smartphone. Toshiba has revealed that its new mini NB520 netbook sports a pair of Harman/Kardon speakers and Dolby Advanced Audio technology, to give users the kind of rich audio experience usually reserved for much bigger devices.  Read More

The Zo from digiZoid

At the beginning of May digiZoid introduced the Zo personal subwoofer, which claimed to enhance a listener's sonic experience by offering increasing degrees of bass contouring to any audio fed through it. Over the past week I've had the chance to take the Zo for a spin. Has it lived up to the claims of its manufacturer? Read on for a full review.  Read More

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