Hi-Fi &amp; Streaming http://www.stuff.tv/hi-fi-streaming/news en-GB Denon's miniature speaker system wants to be your all-in-one PC speaker solution http://www.stuff.tv/denon/dont-let-size-fool-you-denons-miniature-speaker-system-punches-well-above-its-weight/news <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Denon&#039;s tiny cubes promise to blast out sound without taking over your desk </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Storm Trooper paint job" alt="Don&#039;t let size fool you: Denon&#039;s miniature speaker system punches well above its" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/Denon-ceol-hot-stuff.jpg?1405993958" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/esat-dedezade" title="View user profile.">Esat Dedezade</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Woo, speakers.&nbsp;</strong><br />Sarcasm isn&#39;t a good look for you. And the tiny insides of&nbsp;Denon&#39;s new Ceol Carino desktop speakers promise power, with brains to spare.</p> <p><strong>Such as?</strong><br />Well for starters, they pack in 25 watts per channel. Coupled with on-board digital signal processing, that means they should pack an auditory punch above what their minute appearance would suggest, though we&#39;ve yet to test them with our own ears.</p> <p>Denon also states that its bass radiators mean that you won&#39;t need a sub, although we doubt that they can match the booming bass of a dedicated unit. </p> <p>Still, if you really want to knock the paintings off the wall, you can hook a separate dedicated subwoofer up to it.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>How clever is it?</strong><br />It&#39;s no dunce. The system supports CD-quality aptX Bluetooth audio streaming, and it&#39;s even got NFC for easy one-touch pairing.</p> <p>It also supports USB-B DAC, which mean that you can bypass your laptop&#39;s inferior tinny speakers, and has a headphone jack for gaming and watching movies without disturbing snoozing partners.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Black goes with everything" alt="Don&#039;t let size fool you: Denon&#039;s miniature speaker system punches well above its" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/denon-ceol-3.jpg?1405993958" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>You might have sold me...</strong><br />Excellent. Although you might find &pound;300 for computer speakers a little hard to swallow. Still, if you&#39;re after a compact, hassle-free, flexible system for your PC setup, then it&#39;s worth taking the system for an auditory spin before dropping the cash.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/hot-stuff" target="_blank">All the hottest stuff, on one scorching page</a></strong></p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="180" src="http://pages.haymarket.com/stuff_signup/enews_embed" width="300"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Vertical or horizontal?" alt="Don&#039;t let size fool you: Denon&#039;s miniature speaker system punches well above its" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/denon-ceol-2.jpg?1405993958" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> http://www.stuff.tv/denon/dont-let-size-fool-you-denons-miniature-speaker-system-punches-well-above-its-weight/news#comments Denon Hi-Fi & Streaming Hot Stuff Mon, 21 Jul 2014 10:30:04 +0000 Esat Dedezade 1442734 at http://www.stuff.tv Philips Fidelio E5’s wireless speakers take the mess out of surround sound http://www.stuff.tv/philips/philips-fidelio-e5-s-wireless-speakers-take-stress-out-surround-sound/news <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Cinematic audio on demand, minus the cables and the clutter </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Philips Fidelio E5’s wireless speakers take the stress out of surround sound" alt="Philips Fidelio E5’s wireless speakers take the stress out of surround sound" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/philips-fidelio-e5-hot-stuff.jpg?1405995058" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/sam-kieldsen" title="View user profile.">Sam Kieldsen</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Surround sound systems are a pain in the you-know-what&hellip;</strong><br />Not this one. Philips knows that trailing cables around your living room can be a drag &ndash; not to mention a surefire way of making your floor resemble Spaghetti Junction &ndash; so it&rsquo;s made a 5.1 system that doesn&rsquo;t need much in the way of setup.</p> <p><strong>So is the Fidelio E5 wireless?</strong><br />Well, not so much a case of &ldquo;wireless&rdquo; as one of &ldquo;less wires&rdquo;: the system&rsquo;s front speakers will still need to be hooked up to a power source, but you won&rsquo;t need to trail cables from the front unit all the way to the back of your sofa, because the rear pair are battery powered (a charge is good for ten hours, according to Philips).</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Wait a sec &ndash; shouldn&rsquo;t that be &ldquo;fewer wires&rdquo;?</strong><br />OK, Captain Grammar. But where were we? Oh yeah, so the Fidelio E5 can work either as a 2.1 or a 5.1 system. The tops of the front pillar speakers detach to become the wireless rear speakers. So if you want, you only need to set up the 5.1 array when it&rsquo;s time to watch a movie. There&rsquo;s a wireless subwoofer too, to provide those neighbour-bothering low-end bass sounds.</p> <p><strong>And the centre speaker?</strong><br />That comes courtesy of clever psychoacoustic tech. The two front speakers are able to use soundbar-style fakery to create a centre channel without the need for a separate speaker.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="674" title="The rear speakers&#039; batteries last for 10 hours" alt="The rear speakers&#039; batteries last for 10 hours" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/philips-fidelio-e5-3.jpg?1405995058" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Sounds good on paper. But what about in the flesh?</strong><br />Well, we did give the system a listen almost a year ago when <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/philips/ifa-2013/hands-review-philips-fidelio-e5-hi-fi-speakers-transform-home-cinema-demand/news">Philips first demoed it at IFA 2013</a>. But a huge hall full of hundreds of people milling about and talking isn&rsquo;t exactly ideal test conditions. So we can&rsquo;t say how well Philips has pulled it off until we&#39;ve given the E5 a proper review.</p> <p><strong>What else does it offer?</strong><br />A couple of HDMI inputs mean you can hook up two good quality sources &ndash; say a Sky box and a PS4 &ndash; and there&rsquo;s also Bluetooth for audio streaming, accompanied by NFC for easy pairing with suitably-equipped tablets and phones.</p> <p><strong>And availability?</strong><br />The Philips Fidelio E5 is on sale now, priced at &pound;600.</p> <p><strong><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/hot-stuff">PERUSE MORE HOT STUFF</a></strong></p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="180" src="http://pages.haymarket.com/stuff_signup/enews_embed" width="300"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The Philips Fidelio E5 is on sale now for £600" alt="The Philips Fidelio E5 is on sale now for £600" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/philips-fidelio-e5-2.jpg?1405995058" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> Hi-Fi & Streaming Home Cinema Hot Stuff Philips Fri, 18 Jul 2014 11:20:42 +0000 Sam Kieldsen 1442487 at http://www.stuff.tv The best new albums on Spotify so far this year http://www.stuff.tv/music/best-new-albums-spotify-so-far-year/feature <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> With more than 20 million tracks now available on Spotify, deciding what to listen to can be a nightmare. So let Stuff be your guide to the best new music released in 2014 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Our 25 favourite albums so far in 2014" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/best-music-spotify-2014.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>The tyranny of choice, eh? The modern Spotify catalogue is vast enough to strike terror into the indecisive music fan, with more than 20 million tracks now available and some 20,000 new ones added each day.</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/marc-mclaren" title="View user profile.">Marc McLaren</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 1. The Horrors - Luminous </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The Horrors&rsquo; fourth album might as well be titled <em>I &hearts; Indie Dance 1991 </em>such is its slavish devotion to the era.&nbsp;It&#39;s all shimmering synths, shuffling beats and shoegazey guitars, and while the band&#39;s previous two albums also mined the same seam, the influences are more obvious here.&nbsp;</p> <p>That&rsquo;s no bad thing in our book, though, because the early &#39;90s were an amazing time for British music.&nbsp;<em>Luminous</em>&nbsp;isn&#39;t quite as good as the best of its idols - it&#39;s certainly no <em>Loveless</em>&nbsp;- but it starts brilliantly with the hypnotic &#39;Chasing Shadows&#39;, ends strongly on the swoony &#39;Sleepwalk&#39; and serves up plenty of highlights in-between.</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" scrolling="no" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:5kxEB1eJQSH7ODUB2VRQeR" width="604"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The Horrors - Luminous" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/the-horrors-luminous.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 2. Warpaint - Warpaint </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>A song named &#39;Biggy&#39; isn&rsquo;t the only nod Warpaint&rsquo;s self-titled second album gives to hip-hop &ndash; this is a record that&rsquo;s all about beats and bass lines. Guitars take a backset in favour of synths, but even those are there to texturise rather than drive these songs forward.</p> <p>Sometimes you feel like it could&rsquo;ve made more of a mark &ndash; &#39;CC&#39; drifts by and &#39;Go In&#39; sounds like one of Radiohead&rsquo;s more obscure B-sides &ndash; but even with hints of trip-hop (thankfully that doesn&rsquo;t include the smell of dreadlocks) Warpaint are doing more interesting things with indie rock than a thousand Kasabians.</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" scrolling="no" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:31apTrtvkVuSoAqDNjaEip" width="604"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Warpaint - Warpaint" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Warpaint_Warpaint_Album_Cover2.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 3. Mac Demarco - Salad Days </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>You could say that 23-year-old Canadian Mac Demarco&rsquo;s public persona is that of a gap-toothed jackass &ndash; on the surface, he&rsquo;s a schlubby slacker liable to disrobe on stage or embark on a long-winded rant about <em>The Simpsons</em>. But there&rsquo;s nothing lazy or coarse about his music: these home-recorded pop songs (on which Demarco plays all the instruments) reveal an understanding of life and love as much as they do a talent for melody.</p> <p><em>Salad Days</em> is his third and most musically diverse album, and its languid pace make it the perfect accompaniment to those lazy, hungover Sundays.</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" scrolling="no" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:2J4obtL5oOmstcOfq5UW3C" width="604"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Mac Demarco - Salad Days" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/mac-demarco-salad-days_0.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 4. Beck - Morning Phase </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>It&rsquo;s difficult to know quite what you&rsquo;re going to get with a new Beck album. Sometimes you might not even get a proper album at all (2012&rsquo;s <em>Song Reader</em> was released as sheet music) but <em>Morning Phase</em> is as conventional as he&rsquo;s been since <em>Sea Change</em>. And that&rsquo;s no bad thing.</p> <p>What it lacks in invention it more than makes up for with lush orchestration (&#39;Wave&#39;, &#39;Phase&#39;), catchy alt-country (&#39;Say Goodbye&#39;, &#39;Blue Moon&#39;, &#39;Blackbird Chain&#39;) and good old-fashioned melancholia (er, all of it). <em>Morning Phase</em> might be a record full of sadness, but that doesn&rsquo;t mean there&rsquo;s not plenty to love about it.&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:5BLFYfJY79vG1qNWsebaUS" width="604"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Beck - Morning Phase" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/BECK_morning-phase2_0.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-4"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 5. Chromeo - White Women </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Canada&rsquo;s favourite electro-funk duo return with an onslaught of foot-tapping melodies, naughty lyrics and effortlessly cool style. And they&rsquo;ve not forgotten the vocoder.</p> <p>Stand-out track &#39;Fall Back 2U&#39; drags disco into the modern day, and while the lyrics to &#39;Over Your Shoulder&#39; verge on the obscene, they never detract from the rhythms. Their best work yet.</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:3kfmKRaCfuyYk0aaL4jDlI" width="604"></iframe></p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/apple/25-best-iphone-and-ipad-games-you-can-play-right-now/feature">The 25 best games for iPhone and iPad</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Chromeo - White Women" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/chromeo-white-women_0.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-5"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 6. Metronomy - Love Letters </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Metronomy&#39;s first three albums have been miniature masterpieces of quirky electronica, but&nbsp;on&nbsp;<em>Love Letters&nbsp;</em>mainman Joseph Mount&nbsp;has gone for a wholly eclectic approach. So instead you get campfire acoustica, low-fi dubstep, glitchy electro and <em>Crocodile Rock</em>-style glam stompers - and that&#39;s just in the first four tracks.</p> <p>That approach could grate, but thankfully Mount&#39;s mastery of melody is such that each new style merely gives him a new way to pleasure your ears. The whole thing&nbsp;ends up sounding like an entertaining trip through one man&#39;s diverse record collection - kind of like those <em>All Back To Mine</em> compilations, but one recorded by a single artist.&nbsp;</p> <p>Not every track works, but there are way more highlights than lowlights and it&#39;s worth checking out solely for the first two lines of &#39;The Most Immaculate Haircut&#39;, which intentionally or not may be among the funniest ever written.&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:5gRBzv7QQJXz7HkEJYBIyx" width="604"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Metronomy - Love Letters" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/metronomy-love-letters_0.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-6"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 7. Tom Vek - Luck </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Tom Vek&rsquo;s 2005 debut <em>We Have Sound</em> was a refreshing blast of originality in a time saturated by post-punk poseurs. It was also an exciting, largely homemade example of what Vek calls &ldquo;garage rock for the Pro Tools generation&rdquo;. Though lacking its lo-fi urgency, <em>Luck</em> pulls off the same trick of melding varied styles into a cohesive, rhythm-led whole. </p> <p>There&rsquo;s electro-rock (&#39;Sherman&#39;, &#39;Animals In The Jungle&#39;) and &rsquo;80s synthpop (&#39;Ton Of Bricks&#39;), before Vek removes the black-rimmed glasses and goes all Joseph Arthur (&#39;The Girl You Wouldn&rsquo;t Leave For Any Other Girl&#39;). Not a huge departure, then, but further proof that Vek can still sound compellingly unique.&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:6db8YTh29LrLZlYY48E17c" width="604"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Tom Vek - Luck" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/tom-veck-luck_0.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-7"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 8. Mastodon - Once More &#039;Round The Sun </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The most jagged shards of Mastodon&rsquo;s sound may have thawed and broken away since 2009&rsquo;s <em>Crack The Skye</em> but they can still bludgeon like the early days of <em>Remission</em> when they want to.</p> <p>&#39;Chimes At Midnight&#39; sounds like it was buried under the studio where they recorded their debut, only now stirring to lay waste to the earth, while &#39;Aunt Lisa&#39; peaks with a chanted, foul-mouthed witches&rsquo; chorus from fellow Atlanta residents The Coathangers.</p> <p>Older fans might skip the gentler rides offered by tracks such as &#39;Asleep In The Deep&#39;, but if you&rsquo;re partial to a slice or two of riff cake there really are no better bakers in the business.</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:4KYy8DKz2E9DSnlgN0YJOs" width="604"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Mastodon - Once More &#039;Round The Sun" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/mastodon-once-more-round-the-sun_0.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-8"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 9. Real Estate - Atlas </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>New Jersey&rsquo;s Real Estate have tumbled comfortably into their role as the primary purveyors of sweet, summery suburban indie rock: all jangly guitar riffs, soft vocals and lyrics that speak of lawn sprinklers, sun-dappled streets, bicycles, humid nights and cookouts.</p> <p><em>Atlas</em> is their third full-length album and the down-home lo-fi of their first recordings is long gone, replaced by polished arrangements that befit a band of their growing confidence and skill. Makes you want to throw some franks on the BBQ, fill the paddling pool, crack open a Bud and drift away.</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" scrolling="no" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:2BmREVNjF9HI7AZtKkgtF6" width="604"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Real Estate - Atlas" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/real-estate-atlas_0.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-9"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 10. Woods - With Light And With Love </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Brooklyn&rsquo;s Woods have been quietly and prodigiously making rustic, rootsy indie-rock for years, but <em>With Light And With Love </em>is their boldest LP to date (it&rsquo;s also their sixth). From the psychedelic twangy guitar wig-out of the nine-minute title track to the Shins-esque stomp of &lsquo;Moving To The Left&rsquo; to the old-school folkie finisher &lsquo;Feather Man&rsquo;, this is a Woods album all the way, but a bigger, better Woods than we&rsquo;ve seen thus far.</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" scrolling="no" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:6QDzA9wOCaF3cOFd5QRvIc" width="604"></iframe></p> <p><strong>READ MORE:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.stuff.tv/amazon/25-best-things-watch-amazon-instant-video-right-now/feature">The 25 best things to watch on Amazon Instant Prime</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Woods - With Light And With Love" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/woods-with-light-and-with-love_0.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-10"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 11. Jungle - Jungle </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Everyone loves a mystery, and the shadowy figures behind seven-piece London band Jungle make them all the more enticing. Known only as &lsquo;J&rsquo; and &lsquo;T&rsquo;, the founding duo have, despite giving zero publicity, scored thousands of views of their break-dancing videos and had festival crowds flock to their euphoric synth-and-jangling-coke-bottles sets. It&rsquo;s their unique sound &ndash; an intriguing blend of disco, &#39;70s funk and soul, but with a modern, stripped-back edge &ndash; that bring them in. The stunning falsetto harmonies on tracks such as &#39;Busy Earnin&rsquo;&#39; and &#39;The Heat&#39; will carry on in your head long after they&#39;ve finished.</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:1vOMVuIa9B7G5MRK40mcE1" width="604"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Jungle - Jungle" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/jungle-jungle_0.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-11"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 12. Kevin Drew - Darlings </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Despite being the principal vocalist and major creative force behind Canadian chamber-pop supergroup Broken Social Scene, Kevin Drew has never enjoyed the level of mainstream recognition of other members such as Feist or Emily Haines. And yet with BSS on hiatus, he&rsquo;s delivered a solo album that&rsquo;s as weird and wonderful as anything in the band&rsquo;s discography, albeit a little slower in tempo and lighter on ambition.</p> <p>With three of the first four songs called &lsquo;Body Butter&rsquo;, &lsquo;Good Sex&rsquo; and &lsquo;Mexican Aftershow Party&rsquo;, <em>Darlings</em> starts as it means to go on: winkingly dirty and unblinkingly odd.</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" scrolling="no" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:3JFuAmcQIDVn51hXCFo0ir" width="604"></iframe>.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Kevin Drew - Darlings" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/kevin-drew-darlings_0.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-12"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 13. Future Islands - Singles </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Future Islands&rsquo; slot on David Letterman affected the veteran host so deeply that he retired. It didn&#39;t bother us quite so dramatically, but we were mildly horrified at the disjoint between frontman Samuel Herring&rsquo;s bewitchingly odd vocals and his drunk-dad-at-the-disco dancing. Nonetheless, <em>Singles</em> is lovely, if a tad too slick at times. Just be careful to listen to it with your ears, not your eyes.</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:41X9To0bQ4fpoSRri4NHiI" width="604"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Future Islands - Singles" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/future-island-singles_0.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-13"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 14. Brody Dalle - Diploid Love </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Hey, you remember when Brody Dalle was in The Distillers and had a mohican? Yes? Then you&rsquo;ll probably like this. No? Well, it&rsquo;s a mix of fuzzy, angryish songs and a couple of slower, more electro-tinged tracks. Dalle sounds better the angrier she is, but even when she calms down a little the underlining bassy grooves mean there&rsquo;s something for everybody.&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:74kdhSytzNNQpoyVsyBdQQ" width="604"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Brody Dalle - Diploid Love" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/brody-dalle-diploid-love.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-14"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 15. The Antlers - Familiars </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>If you like your dreampop to lean towards 3am heartache, dunk your head in this nocturnal album. Mellow and claustrophobic, it sees Peter Silberman&rsquo;s yearning falsetto glossed with lush production. Fans of the <em>Hospice</em> album might find it too one-paced, but it&rsquo;s a fine soulful nightcap.&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:62D2CvOMVOaXwoUmgC97x9" width="604"></iframe></p> <p><strong>READ MORE:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.stuff.tv/top-20-games-you-can-play-free-your-browser/feature">Kill your productivity - 30 great games you can play for free in your browser</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The Antlers - Familiars" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/the-antlers-familiars.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-15"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 16. The Amazing Snakeheads - Amphetamine Ballads </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Some albums have the power to remove you from your surroundings and plunge you into a new world. <em>Amphetamine Ballads</em>, the debut album by Glaswegian trio The Amazing Snakeheads, is one such album.</p> <p>Wherever you listen to it &ndash; bus, office, kitchen on a sunny day &ndash; it&rsquo;ll transport you to a dingy bar in the worst part of town, a bar made for knocking back something strong and making a play for the wrong kind of person.</p> <p>It&rsquo;s musically sparse yet emotionally rich, pulsing with barely restrained fury that channels everything from The Clash in rockabilly mode to Joy Division at their most aggressive and The Birthday Party. Yes, that good.&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:0J96sxF1ZyJhqyoCDIa6sU" width="604"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The Amazing Snakeheads - Amphetamine Ballads" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/amazingsnakeheads_LP_II_rt2.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-16"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 17. Parquet Courts - Sunbathing Animal </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The scruffy spectre of lo-fi indie rock legends Pavement looms large over Parquet Courts&rsquo; music: there&rsquo;s something recognisable, at once slovenly and winningly melodic, at work in the Brooklyn-via-Texas band&rsquo;s third full-length album.</p> <p>But it also exhibits more scope and variety than their previous efforts, and the studied listener will also pick up echoes of Talking Heads and American college town punk bands of the &#39;80s and &#39;90s.</p> <p>At 13 tracks and 45-plus minutes, <em>Sunbathing Animal</em> is a fairly lengthy album, but after a single listen you&rsquo;ll have plenty of its ragged riffs and hungover hooks implanted in your brain.</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" scrolling="no" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:5uojJv0rFozERjq666I75E" width="604"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Parquet Courts - Sunbathing Animal" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/parquet-courts-sunbathing-animal.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-17"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 18. Avey Tare&#039;s Slasher Flicks - Enter The Slasher House </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>As one third of Animal Collective, Avey Tare is used to straddling the line between experimental pop and pretentious tosh, but this side-project happily majors in the former. It&rsquo;s summery, catchy and, on the single &#39;Little Fang&#39;, stuffed with melodies from heaven.</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:10AjxgpD5oDUBkLikGNKRd" width="604"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Avey Tare&#039;s Slasher Flicks - Enter The Slasher House" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/avey-tare-slasher624_rt2.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-18"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 19. Cloud Nothings - Here And Nowhere Else </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Cloud Nothings&rsquo; frontman, founder and songwriter Dylan Baldi, might be a mere 22 years old, but <em>Here And Nowhere Else</em> is his fourth album. It&rsquo;s also his best, and the group that started life as a one-man bedroom band is now making some of the finest pop-punk around.</p> <p>Short and brutal but infectious, it&rsquo;s something you can mosh to &ndash; and probably listen to around your parents too.</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" scrolling="no" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:1kDOjW8rKQfriOgq2NMlYe" width="604"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Cloud Nothings - Here And Nowhere Else" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/cloud-nothings-here-and-nowhere-else.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-19"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 20. F**ked Up - Glass Boys </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Like roaring? Then you&rsquo;ll like this record. You might also like that it combines roaring with some of the most rousing major-chord punk rock ever recorded. It&rsquo;s complex and subtle enough to get lost in, and the poignancy of the title track betrays deep emotional intelligence. Delivered through the medium of roaring.</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:3rRVuL597efDZfzd5fsQlo" width="604"></iframe></p> <p><strong>READ MORE:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.stuff.tv/25-fantastic-free-android-games/feature">30 fantastic free Android games</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="F**ked Up - Glass Boys" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/fucked-up-glass-boys.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-20"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 21. Tune-Yards - Nikki-Nack </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>This is the third Tune-Yards album but if you&#39;ve not heard them before, Merrill Garbus&#39; layered confections of voice, drum and sample loops might sound mad as a box of tune-frogs: by looping her vocals over and around each other, Garbus uses her voice as a digital instrument and then mixes it with chunks of any sound that fits.</p> <p>Get past the initial confusion, though, and you&#39;re in for some of the most inventive, intelligent and entertaining music of 2014.&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" scrolling="no" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:7JeYK1pt9Kds0E62S7uiIU" width="604"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Tune-Yards - Nikki-Nack" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/tune-yards-nikki-nack.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-21"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 22. The War On Drugs - Lost In The Dream </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Lots of people will tell you there&rsquo;s nothing cool about Dire Straits. Those people are either stupid, or just complete idiots. Just ask The War on Drugs. <em>Lost In A Dream</em> sounds like it was washed in the pocket of Mark Knopfler&rsquo;s denim waistcoat using Boss 2-in-1, Bruce Springsteen&rsquo;s new line in detergent.</p> <p>Gently parping brass occasionally breaks through the rippling surface guitars and synths, while shameless solos crash off drumbeats that&rsquo;d propel old American cars along the ocean roads these songs were written for.</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" scrolling="no" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:71jGGLe5VtEHjIk5dU2W3S" width="604"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The War On Drugs - Lost In The Dream" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/the-war-on-drugs-lost-in-the-dream.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-22"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 23. Manic Street Preachers - Futurology </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>For a band who proclaimed they&rsquo;d split up after one album and who peaked on their third, the Manics have sure been around for a while. <em>Futurology</em> is their twelfth album but their best for years; much of it was recorded in Berlin&rsquo;s Hansa Studios, a venue hewn from rock&rsquo;n&rsquo;roll history, and it&rsquo;s clearly inspired them.</p> <p><em>Futurology</em> is packed with ideas, takes tons of risks and has a definite European feel to it: the lovely instrumental &lsquo;Dreaming A City (Hughesovka)&rsquo; could be on Bowie&rsquo;s <em>Low</em>, also recorded at Hansa, while &lsquo;Europa Geht Durch Mich&rsquo; is an industrial-krautrock masterpiece with vocals by German actress Nina Hoss. The latter is one of three tracks featuring guest vocals, with&nbsp;Scritti Politti&#39;s Green Gartside lending his voice to the poppy &#39;Between The Clock And The Bed&#39; and Georgia Ruth joining in on the string-led ballad &#39;Devine Youth&#39;.</p> <p>Lyrically it&rsquo;s superb: angry, reflective, political, insightful and, on the superb &lsquo;The Next Jet 
To Leave Moscow&rsquo;, remarkably self-aware. It&#39;s not a quality we&#39;ve come to associate with the Manics, but the latter sees Nicky Wire berating himself 
for being &quot;an old jaded Commie&quot; and &quot;the biggest living hypocrite you&#39;ve ever seen&quot;, and throughout there&#39;s a feel that the Welsh trio are finally completely at ease with their past.</p> <p>A real return to form.&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:4qG7Uc8wCuVSpKe4pYbVei" width="604"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Manic Street Preachers - Futurology" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/manic-street-preachers-futurology.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-23"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 24. Ibibio Sound Machine - Ibibio Sound Machine </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The folk tales of lead singer Eno Williams&#39; Nigerian heritage form the basis of this London group&#39;s infectious album, which mixes West African sounds with European electronica, adding some classic disco and a touch of gospel in the process.</p> <p>The result is a fun, lively, foot-tapping 40 minutes that we&#39;d definitely dance to if our dancing was anything other than horribly embarrassing.</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" scrolling="no" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:77olimEkYdq1743eHmoBeF" width="604"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Ibibio Sound Machine - Ibibio Sound Machine" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/ibibio-sound-machine.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-24"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 25. Sharon Van Etten - Are We There </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Confessional songwriting has been around ever since Joni Mitchell pulled out her guitar and sat down to write <em>Blue</em> &ndash; heck, even Taylor Swift&rsquo;s at it these days &ndash; but Sharon Van Etten&rsquo;s lyrics still have the power to stop you dead in your tracks.</p> <p>When the New Jersey native sings &ldquo;Break my legs so I won&rsquo;t walk to you/Cut my tongue so I can&rsquo;t talk to you&rdquo; on &lsquo;Your Love Is Killing Me&rsquo;, she really sells it. With most of the tracks on <em>Are We There</em> concerned with doomed, desperate and destructive love, perhaps this isn&rsquo;t one to give your other half on their birthday &ndash; but do listen to it yourself.</p> <p><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="80" scrolling="no" src="https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify:track:2S1IUGeYOV3JPSoaheqIo9" width="604"></iframe></p> <p><em>Additional reviews by Sam Kieldsen, Tom Wiggins, Will Dunn, Will Findlater, Fraser Macdonald, Mark Wilson, Max Langridge, Emily May and Ross Presly</em></p> <p><strong><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/netflix/25-best-things-watch-netflix-right-now/feature">READ MORE: The 30 best things to watch on Netflix right now</a></strong></p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="180" src="http://pages.haymarket.com/stuff_signup/enews_embed" width="300"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Sharon Van Etten - Are We There" alt="The best new music on Spotify 2014" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/sharon-van-etten-are-we-there.jpg?1405680249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-carousel-item"><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-text field-field-carousel-item-title"> <div class="field-label">Carousel item title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> The best Spotify albums of 2014 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-carousel-item-standfirst"> <div class="field-label">Carousel item standfirst:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Let Stuff be your guide to the best new music released this year </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/music/best-new-albums-spotify-so-far-year/feature" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/music/best-new-albums-spotify-so-far-year/feature#comments Hi-Fi & Streaming Music Spotify Sat, 12 Jul 2014 08:37:25 +0000 Marc McLaren 1441755 at http://www.stuff.tv SoundCloud joins the Sonos gang http://www.stuff.tv/music/soundcloud-joins-sonos-gang/news <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Yes, you can now access the social music streaming service through your Sonos set-up... </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The Sonos set-up" alt="The Sonos set-up" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/Sonos_app_family_0.jpg?1405062712" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>Sonos has signed up SoundCloud as part of its seemingly never-ending quest to integrate every music streaming service in the world.</p> <p>As of today, Sonos users will be able to access the music-discovery-and-sharing platform through its various apps, giving them access to SoundCloud&#39;s many millions of tracks.</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/marc-mclaren" title="View user profile.">Marc McLaren</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The service joins the likes of Spotify, Google Play Music, Deezer, Napster, Rdio and The Hype Machine in the Sonos gang, and will initially be available in beta form.</p> <p>SoundCloud plays host to thousands of unknown artists as well as established bands, podcasts and more; with 12 hours of music added to the service every minute, there&#39;s certainly no shortage of content to listen to.</p> <p>The new addition comes just a few weeks after&nbsp;<a href="http://www.stuff.tv/google-play-music-comes-sonos/news">Google Play Music was integrated</a>, also in beta form, and a few months after Sonos launched its&nbsp;<a href="http://www.stuff.tv/sonos/new-sonos-app-brings-universal-search/news">Universal Search&nbsp;</a>function - enabling users to search for tracks across all of the services, and create playlists containing music from a variety of sources.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.stuff.tv/google-play-music-comes-sonos/news">Google Play Music comes to Sonos</a></strong></p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="180" src="http://pages.haymarket.com/stuff_signup/enews_embed" width="300"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> http://www.stuff.tv/music/soundcloud-joins-sonos-gang/news#comments Hi-Fi & Streaming Music Sonos Thu, 10 Jul 2014 13:45:57 +0000 Marc McLaren 1441650 at http://www.stuff.tv Sony SRS-X3 http://www.stuff.tv/sony/sony-srs-x3/review <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Boom goes Sony’s dynamite portable speaker </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Sony SRS-X3 review" alt="Sony SRS-X3 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/Sony-SRS-X3-2.jpg?1404778558" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/ced-yuen" title="View user profile.">Ced Yuen</a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Whether you&rsquo;re out in the sun or hiding in a tent, every scenario can be improved with music.</p> <p>There&rsquo;s no shortage of portable speakers around, but Sony hopes to get your attention with its 2014 offerings, the pick of which is this SRS-X3.</p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-pricing"><legend>Pricing</legend><div class="field field-type-number-float field-field-test-price"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> £100.00 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-price-from"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 0 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-ratings"><legend>Ratings</legend><div class="field field-type-hcmreviewrating-rating field-field-overall-rating"> <div class="field-label">Overall rating:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="hcmrating-default">8 stars</div> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-pros"> <div class="field-label">Pros:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Neat, portable design </div> <div class="field-item even"> Good range of features </div> <div class="field-item odd"> Punchy, weighty sound </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-cons"> <div class="field-label">Cons:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Could be more rugged </div> <div class="field-item even"> Bass can be too much </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>Review Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Distinctive lines </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The SRS-X3 has what Sony calls its &lsquo;Distinctive Outline&rsquo; design. That&rsquo;s a fluffy way of saying it&rsquo;s a rather nice box.</p> <p>The speaker has a rectangular, er, boxy shape with sloped edges. This is supposed to improve sound quality by reducing diffraction. The mix of materials is also meant to help: rubbery plastic on the top and sides, hard plastic for all edges, and metal for the front and back grilles.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/these-gorgeous-spherical-speakers-look-good-they-sound/news" target="_blank">These gorgeous spherical kebab speakers should sound as good as they look</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="It&#039;s a box, but a fairly pretty box" alt="Sony SRS-X3 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Sony-SRS-X3-4.jpg?1404778558" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Controlled and connected </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>For a small box there&rsquo;s quite a lot going on. The battery lasts around seven hours, which is fairly typical. Inputs are via 3.5mm cable or Bluetooth 2.1. The top surface features NFC for easy pairing, as well as a load of buttons: power, volume, pairing, audio in, and answer. Yes, there&rsquo;s a microphone in case you feel the need to share your phone calls with the nice people in the park.</p> <p>There&rsquo;s also a &lsquo;Sound Mode&rsquo; button. Press this for a wider soundstage. Unlike most equaliser settings, this isn&rsquo;t a waste of time: you definitely get a greater sense of space.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="You can use the line-in socket if you don&#039;t want to play music via Bluetooth" alt="Sony SRS-X3 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Sony-SRS-X3-3.jpg?1404778558" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="There&#039;s a mic and call button if you want to go hands-free with your Bluetooth speaker. No? Us neither." alt="Sony SRS-X3 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Sony-SRS-X3-5.jpg?1404778558" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Passive aggressive </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Under the surface there are two passive radiators &ndash; one at the front, the other at the back. This is nice for those looking for a bit of bass, because most portable speakers only have one, if any at all. There are also two 34mm drivers, each driven by a 10W amplifier.</p> <p>The sound is lively and punchy, and while the rather pronounced bass might offend those looking for a truly neutral balance, it adds weight without overwhelming the rest of the frequency range.</p> <p>There&rsquo;s a nice sense of scale in that your tunes don&rsquo;t sound like they&rsquo;re coming from a beer can, and there&rsquo;s a good level of control &ndash; at least until you bump the volume up to really silly levels. No need for that, though &ndash; the SRS-X3 is plenty loud enough before you get to that stage.</p> <p>For best results, use it in more open spaces. It&rsquo;s more at home in a garden than the coffee table of a small room, where the bass gets a bit overbearing, forcing the midrange to take a back seat.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/history-s-greatest-loudspeaker-back-business/feature" target="_blank">History&#39;s greatest loudspeaker is back in business</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="There are black and white versions if the red is a bit shouty for you" alt="Sony SRS-X3 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Sony-SRS-X3-7.jpg?1404778558" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> In or out? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>A foldable carry case suggests you take the SRS-X3 wherever you go, and at 850g it&rsquo;s certainly within the boundaries of reasonable portability. The build quality is strong, but the paintjob on the metal grilles does chip fairly easily. Factor in the lack of waterproofing, and it&rsquo;s clear this isn&rsquo;t meant for rugged outings. Better stick to picnics (unless your picnics are truly hardcore).</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-4"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Sony SRS-X3 verdict </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The Sony SRS-X3 is handsome enough that you won&rsquo;t look silly with it, feature-packed enough that your portable music needs are more than catered for, and sweet-sounding enough to entertain just about anywhere.</p> <p>A more rugged design would make it even more adventure-proof, but for all but the most wild of outings this is an excellent musical partner.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/hi-fi-streaming/top-ten" target="_blank">The Best Music Systems in the World right now</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Sony SRS-X3 review verdict" alt="Sony SRS-X3 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Sony-SRS-X3-1.jpg?1404778558" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-review-rating"><legend>Review Rating</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> sound </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 7 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> design </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 7 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> features </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 8 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-preview"> <div class="field-label">Preview:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Disabled </div> </div> </div> http://www.stuff.tv/sony/sony-srs-x3/review#comments Bluetooth Speakers Hi-Fi & Streaming Sony SRS-X3 Mon, 07 Jul 2014 13:55:22 +0000 Tom Parsons 1440907 at http://www.stuff.tv Streams from Spotify, Deezer and more to count towards UK music chart http://www.stuff.tv/deezer/streams-spotify-deezer-and-more-count-towards-uk-music-chart/news <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> From July 2014, 100 streams of a track will count as one physical single sale </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Streams from Spotify, Deezer and more to count towards UK music chart " alt="Streams from Spotify, Deezer and more to count towards UK music chart " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/spotify-nexus-4.jpg?1403514866" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>From July 6th, streaming services will be taken into account when compiling the UK singles chart.</p> <p>The Official Charts Company announced the move over the weekend, and revealed that 100 streams of a track will count as one physical sale or download purchase (a stream must be at least 30 seconds to count). That might sound a little arbitrary, but is designed to reflect the weighting of streaming a track against that of actually paying for a song &ndash; and with 260 million songs streamed each week in the UK, it&rsquo;s sure to have a marked effect on the top 40.</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/sam-kieldsen" title="View user profile.">Sam Kieldsen</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Services that will supply streaming data to the Official Charts Company include Spotify, Deezer, Napster, O2 Tracks, Sony Music Unlimited and Xbox Music.</p> <p>Martin Talbot of the Official Charts Company had this to say on the move to include streaming: &ldquo;Audio streaming has grown at an extraordinary rate over the past year &ndash; and the time is now right to take this important step. We have been looking at this possibility for some time and now feel comfortable that our methodology is correct and that summer 2014 is the time we should take this step.&rdquo;</p> <p>[Via <a href="http://www.officialcharts.com/chart-news/uks-official-singles-chart-to-include-streaming-data-for-first-time-3105/">Official Charts Company</a>]</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/apple/apple-could-bring-fight-spotify-and-google-play-music-itunes-music-streaming-service/news">Apple could bring the fight to Spotify and Google Play Music with an iTunes music streaming service</a></strong></p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="180" src="http://pages.haymarket.com/stuff_signup/enews_embed" width="300"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="video-wrapper youtube-player-wrapper"> <iframe width="640" height="385" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/iPKoK5TUa3E" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe> </div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/deezer/streams-spotify-deezer-and-more-count-towards-uk-music-chart/news" target="_blank">read more</a></p> Deezer Hi-Fi & Streaming Spotify Mon, 23 Jun 2014 09:13:44 +0000 Sam Kieldsen 1439885 at http://www.stuff.tv The beautiful OD-11 cloud speaker plays nice with Spotify and AirPlay http://www.stuff.tv/spotify/od-11-cloud-speaker-play-nice-spotify-and-airplay/news <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Think this cube speaker looks familiar? You’re not wrong… </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="OD-11 cloud speaker to play nice with Spotify and AirPlay" alt="OD-11 cloud speaker to play nice with Spotify and AirPlay" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/od-11-cloud-speaker-main.jpg?1403158698" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/sam-kieldsen" title="View user profile.">Sam Kieldsen</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>I feel like I&rsquo;ve seen this speaker before&hellip;</strong><br />You may have, especially if you&rsquo;ve spent any time in Sweden. The 2014 OD-11 is a modern day reworking of Stig Carlsson&rsquo;s original, first released way back in 1974.</p> <p><strong>So this is a 40-year-old speaker?</strong><br />Nope. Well, the exterior is the same &ndash; and we think you can agree that the design is distinctly timeless &ndash; as is the &ldquo;ortho acoustic&rdquo; construction, which directs sound upwards, towards the ceiling. This widens the sweet spot, allowing you to wander around your room without losing optimum audio quality.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>But what&rsquo;s new?</strong><br />There&rsquo;s a new 100W analogue amplifier inside, but perhaps more interesting is the built-in Wi-Fi and compatibility with cloud-based streaming services. Spotify Connect is one &ndash; and the company say others will be supported. The OD-11&rsquo;s firmware is fully upgradeable via Wi-Fi, you see.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/spotify/why-you-should-care-about-spotify-connect/feature">Why you should care about Spotify Connect, the tech that&#39;ll fill your home with streamed music</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The OD-11&#039;s hockey puck remote control" alt="The OD-11&#039;s hockey puck remote control" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/od-11-cloud-speaker-remote.jpg?1403158698" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>So only Spotify works?</strong><br />The speaker is also fully AirPlay compatible at launch, so music kept on iOS devices and any computer running iTunes should be playable too.</p> <p><strong>Can I buy one?</strong><br />From 18th July, the OD-11 will be available in the US, priced at US$899 (&pound;530). You&rsquo;ll be able to buy it at New York&rsquo;s two MoMA Design Stores, or online via <a href="http://www.teenageengineering.com/">teenageengineering.com</a>. A European launch is yet to be confirmed.</p> <p><strong><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/hot-stuff">LISTEN UP, HERE&rsquo;S MORE HOT STUFF</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The OD-11&#039;s design is 40 years old but still glorious" alt="The OD-11&#039;s design is 40 years old but still glorious" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/od-11-cloud-speaker-red.jpg?1403158698" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> Docks and Speakers Hi-Fi & Streaming Hot Stuff Spotify Wed, 18 Jun 2014 16:22:56 +0000 Sam Kieldsen 1439492 at http://www.stuff.tv Why you should be pumped about (and just a bit sceptical of) Hi-Res Audio http://www.stuff.tv/music/why-it-s-time-get-pumped-about-hi-res-audio/feature <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> UPDATED 17/06/14: Record labels agree on standardised definition and categories for hi-res audio </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Why you should be pumped about Hi-Res Audio" alt="Why you should be pumped about Hi-Res Audio" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/sony-f886_0.jpg?1403084686" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>On the surface, things aren&rsquo;t looking particularly rosy for lovers of high quality music formats.</p> <p>For teenagers, YouTube has become the go-to method for listening to songs, while most other people, even die-hard music addicts, eschew spending big on physical formats in favour of cheap and convenient compressed digital alternatives like MP3 downloads and Spotify streaming.&nbsp;It&rsquo;s enough to make an audiophile weep into his teetering stack of 180gm Pink Floyd re-issues.</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/sam-kieldsen" title="View user profile.">Sam Kieldsen</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> So what is hi-res audio? Hi-def TV for my ears? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Good question &ndash; and one for which there are several possible answers. Unlike HDTV, there isn&rsquo;t a set standard for what constitutes Hi-Res Audio, but generally it&rsquo;s considered to be anything with a bit depth and sampling frequency above 16-bit/44.1kHz, which is standard CD quality. 24-bit/192kHz is considered the Holy Grail of Hi-Res Audio, but &lsquo;lesser&rsquo; qualities like 24-bit/96kHz are still hi-res.</p> <p>The more bits, the more accurately the signal is measured. The higher the sampling frequency, the more samples-per-second were taken when the original analogue sound was converted into digital.</p> <p>Confusingly, Hi-Res Audio can come in a variety of file formats. There&rsquo;s FLAC (Free Lossless Audio Codec), ALAC (Apple Lossless Audio Codec), WAV, AIFF and DSD. The first two are compressed formats, which might suggest they&rsquo;re inferior to the others &ndash; but they&rsquo;re also lossless, which means they&rsquo;re compressed in such a way that no audio data is lost. So they take up less disk space than the others but sound exactly the same.</p> <p>Note, however, that not every file in one of the above formats is hi-res. Plenty of people use FLAC or ALAC to rip CDs losslessly, for instance &ndash; in which case the file played back is CD quality, not hi-res.</p> <p><strong>Update 17/06/14: </strong>Record labels and consumer electronics groups have got together to lock down the definition of <a href="http://www.whathifi.com/news/new-formal-definition-for-high-resolution-audio-agreed" target="_blank">what, exactly, hi-res audio is</a>. The Digital Entertainment Group, the Consumer Electronics Association and The Recording Academy have teamed up with Sony, Universal and Warner Music Group to come up with a standard definition for high resolution audio: &quot;Lossless audio that is capable of reproducing the full range of sound from recordings that have been mastered from better than CD-quality music sources.&quot;</p> <p>Four different file formats have also been agreed: MQ-P; MQ-A; MQ-C; and MQ-D. &quot;MQ&quot; stands for &quot;Master Quality&quot;,&nbsp;meaning that the file is produced from a digital or analogue master recording. The file types are as follows:</p> <ul> <li>MQ-P: from a PCM master source 48kHz/20-bit or higher (typically 96/24 or 192/24 content).</li> <li>MQ-A: from an analogue master source.</li> <li>MQ-C: from a CD master source (44.1kHz/16-bit).</li> <li>MQ-D: from a DSD/DSF master source (typically 2.8MHz or 5.6MHz content).</li> </ul> <p>Although the Master Quality file types and definition of hi-res audio are voluntary, the hope is that with major players backing them, they&#39;ll come to be a de facto standard.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> And why now? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>There have been attempts to popularise Hi-Res Audio in the past, most notably with the DVD-Audio and SACD disc formats, both of which entered the market in 2000 to what might be generously described as &ldquo;limited success&rdquo;. That didn&rsquo;t work out &ndash; so why is now any different?</p> <p>Firstly, there&rsquo;s a concerted push from a loose partnership consisting of the Consumer Electronics Association (the organisation behind <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/ces-2014" target="_blank">CES Las Vegas</a>), Sony Electronics, and the three major music publishers (Sony, Warner and Universal). The CEA&rsquo;s job is to market the idea (much like it has done in recent years with HDTV, 3D TV and 4K), Sony&rsquo;s is to build compatible hardware and the record companies&rsquo; is to make hi-res music more readily available.</p> <p>And we&#39;ve recently seen the very first hi-res compatible smartphones released in the forms of the <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/android/lg-g2/review" target="_blank">LG G2</a> and <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/galaxy-note-3/samsung-galaxy-note-3/review" target="_blank">Samsung Galaxy Note 3</a> (both capable of playing FLAC and WAV at 24-bit/192kHz quality), and there&rsquo;ll be more launched next year.</p> <p>Rock legend Neil Young is also releasing his <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/neil-young-shows-pono-audiophile-music-player/news" target="_blank">Pono portable music player</a> &ndash; and an accompanying library of studio master quality albums &ndash; in &ldquo;early 2014&rdquo;. Details on Pono are fairly scant, but it will be 24-bit/192kHz compatible and albums released for the first time in hi-res through the store will include the likes of Bob Dylan&#39;s Highway 61 Revisited.</p> <p>Making hi-res available for listening via smartphone or portable device (such as the Sony NWZ-F886 detailed below) is extremely important, as most non-audiophiles don&rsquo;t sit at home listening to music through incredibly expensive hi-fi equipment &ndash; they listen through their phones when they&rsquo;re out and about. You want to capture the younger market? You need to put hi-res on portable devices.</p> <p>Storage is also cheaper than ever, meaning it&rsquo;s somewhat less of a headache accommodating the huge files required for Hi-Res Audio. 24-bit/96kHz files weigh in at 34.56MB per minute, compared to 1.44MB per minute for 192kbps MP3s. That&rsquo;s 24 times the space.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="video-wrapper youtube-player-wrapper"> <iframe width="640" height="385" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/qL1ffo8TwGM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe> </div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> So what do I need to listen to it? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>There are plenty of hi-fi products compatible with Hi-Res Audio, from streamers like the Cambridge Audio Minx Xi and Pioneer N-50 to networked AV receivers like the Marantz NR1504. While some of these come in at the affordable end of the spectrum, once you add speakers, cables and network storage to the mix you&rsquo;re looking at a big spend.</p> <p>As we mentioned above, Sony has gone on a real Hi-Res Audio push of late. You can read about the products the company has launched in more depth <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/mp3-player/ifa-2013/sony-gets-serious-about-high-quality-sound-raft-new-gear/news" target="_blank">here</a>, but suffice to say: if you&rsquo;re looking for an easy (dare we say idiot-proof) way to get into hi-res music, Sony is the company offering the closest thing. Its HAP-S1 micro system, for instance, is a one-box solution with built-in amplifier, 500GB of expandable storage, Wi-Fi, DLNA, touchscreen controls and compatibility with all the major hi-res formats, all for &pound;800. Add a pair of speakers and you&rsquo;re ready.</p> <p>Even simpler is the NWZ-F886 (&pound;240), Sony&rsquo;s Android-based Walkman digital music player. It supports 24-bit/192kHz and carries a built-in digital amp &ndash; although its 32GB of storage will fill up quickly if you do opt for those hi-res files.</p> <p>You can also listen to 24-bit files on your computer, via software like Winamp or VLC (iTunes does not yet support 24-bit). Unless your PC or Mac has a top class sound card, a DAC or headphone amp makes a welcome investment in this case. You can check out some of our favourite DACs <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/music/5-best-dacs-how-make-your-digital-music-sound-amazing/feature" target="_blank">here</a>.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Sony HAP-S1" alt="Sony HAP-S1" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/sony-hap-s1_0.jpg?1403084686" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Sony NWZ-F886" alt="Sony NWZ-F886" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/sony-nwz-f886.jpg?1403084686" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> And where do I get it? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>This is a key point, because if there&rsquo;s barely any hi-res music to listen to, it will never become more than a niche market. That&rsquo;s the fate that befell SACD and DVD-Audio when it became clear to listeners that the labels weren&rsquo;t really taking either format seriously, releasing mostly old remastered albums alongside the odd new album and the audiophile (but very niche) staples of jazz and classical records.</p> <p>At the moment the choice is fairly uninspiring unless you want those aforementioned jazz, classical and old records. Manufacturer-run sites like <a href="http://www.linnrecords.com/" target="_blank">Linn Records</a>, <a href="http://www.naimlabel.com/" target="_blank">Naim Label</a> and <a href="http://www.bowers-wilkins.co.uk/Society_of_Sound/Society_of_Sound/Music/download-lossless-sound.html" target="_blank">Bowers &amp; Wilkins Society of Sound</a> feature a small selection of 24-bit material, while <a href="http://www.7digital.com/find-music/7digital-recommends/flac" target="_blank">7digital</a> has albums by The National and Radiohead but little else. Neil Young&rsquo;s Pono store looks likely to be made up mostly of re-releases.</p> <p>This needs to change, and change soon, if hi-res is to even approach the mainstream. While there&rsquo;s nothing wrong with releasing old re-mastered material, the labels need to offer new stuff too. Linn Records, for instance, has <a href="http://www.linnrecords.com/recording-prism.aspx" target="_blank">Katy Perry&rsquo;s latest album</a> available in 24-bit/44kHz quality alongside more traditional stuff like Mike Oldfield and Bach &ndash; but really the labels need to start releasing 24-bit versions of every album as a matter of course.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The National&#039;s Trouble Will Find Me in 24-bit FLAC" alt="The National&#039;s Trouble Will Find Me in 24-bit FLAC" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/7digital-the-national-flac.jpg?1403084686" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-4"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> That Katy Perry 24-bit album costs £18 though – is the quality that much better than MP3 or CD? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>While it certainly sounds better than compressed MP3, there exists some controversy over whether 24-bit music offers any discernible jump in quality over 16-bit/44.1kHz CD quality. CD, the argument goes, was mathematically designed to offer the best audio quality, covering the full range of frequencies that the human ear can perceive, and therefore it&rsquo;s a scientific fact that 24-bit is a case of the emperor&rsquo;s new tunes &ndash; or, as a scathing piece by audio codec expert Monty Montgomery at <a href="http://xiph.org/~xiphmont/demo/neil-young.html" target="_blank">Xiph.org</a> puts it, &ldquo;a solution to a problem that doesn&rsquo;t exist, a business model based on willful ignorance and scamming people.&rdquo;</p> <p>We&rsquo;ve listened to 24-bit SACD and DVD-Audio albums that sounded markedly better than the 16-bit CD versions &ndash; so were we just imagining it? It seems likely that the re-mastering of those albums is a key factor: albums mastered for Hi-Res Audio tend to retain a greater dynamic range &ndash; the range from the quietest parts to the loudest parts of the recording &ndash; and that will sound better on decent hi-fi equipment or headphones.</p> <p>Modern CDs tend to be &lsquo;louder&rsquo; with a more tightly compressed dynamic range: mastered to sound &lsquo;better&rsquo; on the radio and cheaper equipment (Metallica&#39;s Death Magnetic LP came under fire for its highly compressed sound &ndash; in fact a song from the album featured in a Guitar Hero game was far better-sounding than the CD version, due to coming direct from the master tapes and retaining a greater dynamic range). A push towards Hi-Res Audio and so-called &ldquo;Studio Master&rdquo; quality will hopefully mean a push for albums mastered twice: once for hi-res and once for &lsquo;normal&rsquo; CD. And that can only be a good thing for music lovers.</p> <p>But will it go massive? The record companies and manufacturers have their work cut out, in our opinion: MP3 downloads and Spotify streaming is incredibly convenient and cheap compared to Hi-Res Audio&rsquo;s giant file sizes and higher pricing &ndash; and we&rsquo;ve seen time and time again in the tech world that convenience wins out. And it&#39;s also worth nothing that big players like Apple and Sonos don&#39;t seem interested &ndash; neither offers more than 16-bit compatibility on its products. So hi-res is coming &ndash; but without a real commitment from the industry it may well remain trapped in an audiophile niche.</p> <p><em>Image credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/28037727@N00/4990494043/in/photolist-8AZA1K-8SLbUW-92gsUD-7HEp7D-b6Z8Az-8tZhw8-9uAq4U-9sUZay-akjgmy-7NHdws-8KzXPY-gzdTtx-aSvbUX-8KAEPq-8KxTgB-aah3KT-dUkbhH-aajRab-aah3ez-cAPJwA-8Ky56x-8KwzPV-bVUv61-8KxFmt-8SDo34-gNQsuf-92XpSi-8KBabE-ic3Tpm-gKYNfv-7GdxTP-ac9S4i-bCSu3U-bRMBzT-ac9S8e-bBEkpM-bmW649-azKgDS-a7Q8G6-8B3MF5-a7T2md-a7Q8D4-8KBbXb-a7Q8Fv-7Aa3jC-9Px5YR-9PzVCu-8qTyJr-do6pwp-dZXvML-bFLE3K" target="_blank">Anthony Nguyen</a></em></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" alt="" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/headphone-amp.jpg?1403084686" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Metallica&#039;s Death Magnetic came under fire for its highly compressed production" alt="Metallica&#039;s Death Magnetic came under fire for its highly compressed production" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/metallica-death-magnetic-front.jpg?1403084686" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-carousel-item"><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-text field-field-carousel-item-title"> <div class="field-label">Carousel item title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Hi-Res Audio: a sound investment? </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/music/why-it-s-time-get-pumped-about-hi-res-audio/feature" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/music/why-it-s-time-get-pumped-about-hi-res-audio/feature#comments Headphones Hi-Fi & Streaming Tue, 17 Jun 2014 17:03:17 +0000 Sam Kieldsen 1430000 at http://www.stuff.tv Amazon Prime Music arrives with one million streamable songs http://www.stuff.tv/amazon/amazon-prime-music-arrives-one-million-streamable-songs/news <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> US residents just got another reason to become Amazon Prime subscribers </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Amazon Prime Music arrives with one million streamable songs" alt="Amazon Prime Music arrives with one million streamable songs" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/kindle-fire-amazon-prime-music.jpg?1402566658" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>Hey, US residents: Amazon has just come up with a new reason for you to subscribe to its Prime service &ndash; or rather, one million new reasons.</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/sam-kieldsen" title="View user profile.">Sam Kieldsen</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>So, the service itself. Like Spotify Premium, it&rsquo;s ad-free and allows songs to be synced to devices for offline playback. It also features &ldquo;Prime Playlists&rdquo;, which Amazon describes as &ldquo;hand crafted collections of songs&rdquo;. These or your own playlists can be stored in the cloud and music can be played back on a range of devices: Amazon&rsquo;s own Kindle Fire tablets (naturally); iOS and Android phones and tablets; and PC and Mac computers. And the timing of the service&rsquo;s launch probably isn&rsquo;t an accident, with Amazon reportedly poised to announce <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/amazon/amazon-s-smartphone-revealed-purported-leaked-render/news">its very first smartphone</a> any day now.</p> <p>The music service adds to the perks already available to Amazon Prime subscribers: free expedited shipping (two-day in the US, one-day in the UK); the Prime Instant Video movie and TV show streaming service; and 500,000 free ebooks through the Kindle Lending Library.</p> <p>The announcement is likely to increase the perception that UK customers are getting something of a raw deal compared to their US cousins, however. Prime costs &pound;79 a year in the UK but just $99 (around &pound;60) in the US, and UK users don&rsquo;t get the music service &ndash; at least not yet. We&rsquo;d be very surprised if Amazon didn&rsquo;t eventually roll it out beyond America (as it did with Instant Video), but it could well be a few months until that happens.</p> <p>[Via <a href="http://www.amazon.com/b?ie=UTF8&amp;node=8335758011">Amazon</a>]</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/amazon/25-best-things-watch-amazon-instant-video-right-now/feature">The 25 best things to watch on Amazon Prime Instant Video right now</a></strong></p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="180" src="http://pages.haymarket.com/stuff_signup/enews_embed" width="300"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Prime Playlists are pre-curated for your lazy listening pleasure" alt="Prime Playlists are pre-curated for your lazy listening pleasure" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/amazon-prime-playlists.jpg?1402566658" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/amazon/amazon-prime-music-arrives-one-million-streamable-songs/news" target="_blank">read more</a></p> Amazon Hi-Fi & Streaming iPod and MP3 Thu, 12 Jun 2014 09:49:50 +0000 Sam Kieldsen 1438959 at http://www.stuff.tv These gorgeous spherical kebab speakers should sound as good as they look http://www.stuff.tv/these-gorgeous-spherical-speakers-look-good-they-sound/news <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Cubes are great and all, but we appreciate fine curves too </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Yes please" alt="These gorgeous spherical kebab speakers should sound as good as they look" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/envy-3_0.jpg?1403625238" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/esat-dedezade" title="View user profile.">Esat Dedezade</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Ooooh, pretty</strong><br />Aren&#39;t they just? The Envy 3 speaker system is designed by dba, or Demand Better Audio. A name like that sets the standards rather high, and the Envy 3 speakers deliver.</p> <p><strong>Are they blessed with the souls of an angelic choir?</strong><br />Well, they could be we suppose, but we can&#39;t guarantee any mystical powers.&nbsp;</p> <p>What we can say with confidence, is that these speakers have been engineered for high level sound, and a large part of their audio excellence is down to their spherical shape. It minimises annoying audio anomalies like diffraction and coloration, which are problems that are often found in more traditional box-shaped speakers.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>They look expensive. Do spheres cost more than cubes?</strong><br />It&#39;s not just the shape you&#39;ll be paying for. High quality materials like carbon fibre, aluminium, Kevlar adhesives and the same anti-vibration membranes found in F1 cars are all blended together forming not just a pair of speakers, but works of art.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="600" height="450" title="Can you smell the carbon fibre?" alt="These gorgeous spherical speakers look as good as they sound" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/dba.jpg?1403625238" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>I expect my ears to weep with joy</strong><br />If they do, call a doctor. That&#39;s not normal. Metaphors aside, your expectations should be met. An 80mm woven carbon super-wide driver takes care of the mid-range, while bass is pumped out from a 3in voice coil, specifically shaped for optimum dispersion. Its centre section is able to radiate the highest frequencies, while the outer portion rumbles out the lower tones.</p> <p>A high performance tweeter capable of producing high frequency sound rounds off the Envy 3&#39;s stellar audio credentials.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="600" height="450" title="BOOM" alt="These gorgeous spherical speakers look as good as they sound" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/dba-envy-3-2.jpg?1403625238" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>How many of my children do I have to sell?</strong><br />Considering that the Envy 3 starts from &pound;4,990, we reckon you&#39;ll have to part with at least one. But it&#39;s ok. We doubt little Timmy looks or sounds as good as the Envy 3, and you&#39;ll save money with one less mouth to feed too. It&#39;s a no brainer, if you ask us.&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/hot-stuff">All the hottest stuff on one scorching page</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="600" height="450" title="Don&#039;t kick them" alt="These gorgeous spherical speakers look as good as they sound" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/dba-ency-3-close-1.jpg?1403625238" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> http://www.stuff.tv/these-gorgeous-spherical-speakers-look-good-they-sound/news#comments Hi-Fi & Streaming Hot Stuff Tue, 10 Jun 2014 16:38:55 +0000 Esat Dedezade 1438867 at http://www.stuff.tv New Lightning connector spec could mean a boost for iOS audio quality http://www.stuff.tv/apple/new-lightning-connector-spec-could-mean-boost-ios-audio-quality/news <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> In the future, audiophile headphones could hook up to iPhones, iPods and iPads via Lightning </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="New Lightning connector spec could mean a boost for iOS audio quality" alt="New Lightning connector spec could mean a boost for iOS audio quality" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/lightning.jpg?1402014351" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>Apple has introduced a new specification for its Lightning connector that would allow third-party manufacturers to use it for audio purposes &ndash; and that could mean a boost for future iPhone, iPad and iPod sound quality.</p> <p>Manufacturers participating in the MFi (Made for iPhone/iPod/iPad) programme will be able to make headphones and the like that support lossless 48kHz digital audio from an iOS device.</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/sam-kieldsen" title="View user profile.">Sam Kieldsen</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Of course, it remains to be seen whether third-party manufacturers will use this specification &ndash; but it could mean a jump in iPhone, iPad and iPod sound quality. We&rsquo;d also imagine that Apple will use its acquisition of Beats Audio to produce its own Lightning-equipped headphones and speaker docks that make full use of the new spec &ndash; after all, with Lightning being exclusive to Apple, that&rsquo;s a unique selling point that iOS products will have over other phones, tablets and portable audio players.</p> <p>It also ties in nicely with Apple&rsquo;s rumoured plans to <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/apple-bringing-hi-res-audio-ios-8/news">introduce Hi-Res Audio support in future iOS devices</a> and start selling Hi-Res music via iTunes. With Beats in the fold and new support for higher quality headphones, Apple could soon be marketing iOS products as truly audiophile-friendly.</p> <p>[Via: <a href="http://9to5mac.com/2014/06/03/apple-introduces-mfi-specs-for-lightning-cable-headphones-support-arriving-in-future-ios-update/">9to5Mac</a>]</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/apple/apple-acquires-beats-us3-billion/news">Apple acquires Beats for US$3 billion</a></strong></p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="180" src="http://pages.haymarket.com/stuff_signup/enews_embed" width="300"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="604" height="453" title="Lightning-equipped Beats headphones? You can bet your house on it" alt="Lightning-equipped Beats headphones? You can bet your house on it" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/beats-apple.jpg?1402014351" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/apple/new-lightning-connector-spec-could-mean-boost-ios-audio-quality/news" target="_blank">read more</a></p> Apple Hi-Fi & Streaming Hi-Res Audio iOS iPod and MP3 Thu, 05 Jun 2014 14:56:35 +0000 Sam Kieldsen 1438628 at http://www.stuff.tv Bang & Olufsen BeoLab 20 is a high-end audio Dalek http://www.stuff.tv/bo/bang-olufsen-beolab-20-beautiful-wireless-sound-machine/news <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> It may look like an alien invader, but this wireless speaker just wants to fill your room with music </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Bang &amp; Olufsen BeoLab 20" alt="Bang &amp; Olufsen BeoLab 20" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/bang-and-olufsen-beolab-20-01.jpg?1400309516" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/stephen-graves" title="View user profile.">Stephen Graves</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Help! The Daleks are invading&hellip;</strong><br />This isn&#39;t an alien invasion. It&#39;s the latest high-end floor speaker from Danish audio wizards Bang &amp; Olufsen: the <a href="http://www.bang-olufsen.com/en/sound/loudspeakers/beolab-20" target="_blank">BeoLab 20</a>.</p> <p><strong>They&#39;re rather nice to look at. </strong><br />They sound pretty impressive too, as we discovered on our visit to the B&amp;O factory &ndash;&nbsp;where the company tests its speakers in a &quot;sound cube&quot; measuring 12m x 12m x 13m. After the speakers&#39; acoustic response has been checked to minimise distortion, cabinet resonances and diffraction effects, they&#39;re taken to a room for subjective listening tests &ndash; just to make sure they sound right to the human ear, across different genres of music.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Lovely. What&#39;s actually in them?</strong><br />Inside, you get a 10in woofer in a 18l enclosure, with two 160w class D amplifiers, a 5in midrange speaker ina a 4l enclosure with its own 160w class D amplifier, and a &frac34;in tweeter with &ndash; you guessed it &ndash; a 160w class D amplifier. The tweeter uses B&amp;O&#39;s nifty Acoustic Lens technology, designed to boost the size of the sweet spot and minimise floor and ceiling reflections. The speaker also packs also Bang &amp; Olufsen&#39;s Adaptive Bass Linearisation tech, which monitors the low end and reduces bass throughput in response to extreme peaks.</p> <p><strong>They&#39;re wireless?</strong><br />They are indeed. The BeoLab 20 packs a wireless WiSA receiver, so you can cut cord clutter. Sync it up with the new <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/bo/bang-olufsen-beovision-avant-4k-tv-follows-you-around-room/news" target="_blank">BeoVision Avant 4K TV</a>, for example, and the TV will recognise the speaker model and its placement in the room, and adapt its output accordingly.</p> <p><strong>How much does it cost? </strong><br />Take a deep breath and sit down; a single BeoLab 20 will set you back &pound;3748, with a pair costing &pound;7495. If you&#39;ve snapped up the BeoVision Avant 4K TV (a snip at &pound;5995), Bang &amp; Olufsen suggests setting it up with four BeoLab 20s. Better start saving, then.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.stuff.tv/bo/bang-olufsen-beovision-avant-4k-tv-follows-you-around-room/news" target="_blank">Bang &amp; Olufsen BeoVision Avant 4K TV follows you around the room</a></strong></p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="180" src="http://pages.haymarket.com/stuff_signup/enews_embed" width="300"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The BeoLab 20&#039;s acoustic lens, up close" alt="Bang &amp; Olufsen BeoLab 20" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/bang-and-olufsen-beolab-20-03.jpg?1400309516" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="B&amp;O reckons you need four BeoLab 20s if you&#039;ve snapped up the BeoVision Avant 4K TV" alt="Bang &amp; Olufsen BeoLab 20" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/bang-and-olufsen-beolab-20-02.jpg?1400309516" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> http://www.stuff.tv/bo/bang-olufsen-beolab-20-beautiful-wireless-sound-machine/news#comments B&O Hi-Fi & Streaming Hot Stuff Fri, 16 May 2014 11:54:06 +0000 Stephen Graves 1437325 at http://www.stuff.tv So why does Apple want to buy Beats? http://www.stuff.tv/apple/why-apple-wants-buy-beats/feature <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Sam Kieldsen asks what Cupertino thinks it can get from Dr Dre’s headphone company. Hint: it’s not about headphones </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="So why does Apple want to buy Beats?" alt="So why does Apple want to buy Beats?" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/apple-dre-beats.jpg?1400203467" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>At the time of writing, it seems increasingly likely that Apple is about to acquire Beats Electronics, the headphone and audio company started by, among others, hip hop legend Dr Dre, for US$3.2 billion &ndash; or &pound;1.9 billion. But why?</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/sam-kieldsen" title="View user profile.">Sam Kieldsen</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Beats is different. It&rsquo;s been an established name since its first pair of headphones was released in 2008. It has one of rap&rsquo;s best-known producers as its figurehead. Its products are beloved of footballers and celebrities. It&rsquo;s a huge brand, and for Apple to buy it for its technology and then kill it off just doesn&rsquo;t make sense.</p> <p>For all Beats&rsquo; popularity, there&rsquo;s nothing supremely technically innovative about its headphones: they&rsquo;re simply solidly-made, bass-heavy cans; probably most people would call them overpriced. If it wanted to improve the quality of its own (much-derided) headphones, Apple could spend a far smaller sum of money buying any one of a number of audio companies with just as much technical knowhow than Beats.</p> <p>OK, so Beats makes home speakers too. Maybe Apple wants to use this tech in a new <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IPod_Hi-Fi" target="_blank">iPod Hi-Fi</a>? Or its long-rumoured (and, let&rsquo;s face it, probably non-existent) HDTV. But again, Beats offers nothing that a dozen other audio companies don&rsquo;t.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/beats-drdre/beats-luke-wood-we-want-raise-sound-quality-bar/feature" target="_blank">Beats&#39; Luke Wood: &quot;We want to raise the sound quality bar&quot;</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Beats headphones" alt="Beats headphones" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/beats-headphones.jpg?1400203467" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>So what else does Beats have going for it? Well, there&rsquo;s its streaming service, Beats Music, which launched in January of this year. Beats Music is based on the MOG service Beats purchased back in 2012 for something in the region of US$10 million, so it&rsquo;s hard to see Apple &ndash; the world&rsquo;s largest music retailer &ndash; feeling the need to snap it up now for a vastly increased sum. While it&rsquo;s promising, and it&rsquo;s already set up, it&rsquo;s a new service that has yet to prove itself (it hasn&rsquo;t even launched outside of the US).</p> <p>The more I think about this deal, the more it seems Apple is buying Beats for its image. And that&rsquo;s quite out of character for Cupertino, where understated, minimalist design, not the look-at-me bling of Beats&rsquo; red cables and bright colours, has always ruled.</p> <p>Apple has thrived on exuding its own brand of mercurial cool &ndash; one that says &ldquo;we know best&rdquo; with such crystal clarity that it convinces you that they really, really do. For it to think it needs to shell out billions on Beats in order to boost its street cred strikes us as baffling &ndash; and actually a sign that the company is, for the first time, in danger of becoming out of touch. Because there are actually a lot of people out there &ndash; and I don&rsquo;t just mean audiophiles, I mean people who value style just as much as substance &ndash; that wouldn&rsquo;t be caught dead wearing Beats headphones. As I said, they&rsquo;re the go-to headphone brand for footballers and c-list soap stars. Does anyone who&#39;s genuinely cool want a Beats Audio logo on the back of their iPhone?</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/new-rechargeable-beats-dre-studio-headphones-hit-shelves-today/news" target="_blank">New rechargeable Beats by Dre Studio headphones hit shelves today</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Beats Music" alt="Beats Music" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/beats-music.jpg?1400203467" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>It&rsquo;s true that Beats as a company is a huge money-maker though. It holds about 50 percent of the US$1 billion global headphone market, and perhaps with Apple&rsquo;s help it can grab even more of a share. But even then it&rsquo;ll be a few years before Apple&rsquo;s investment pays for itself.</p> <p>More likely? Apple is acting now because of all the above factors. In Beats it has a company that makes audio hardware that consumers love, it has a ready-made streaming service and his has (what it thinks) is an image boost. But is that really worth $3 billion?</p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="180" src="http://pages.haymarket.com/stuff_signup/enews_embed" width="300"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="604" height="453" title="Beats founders Dr Dre and Jimmy Iovine" alt="Beats founders Dr Dre and Jimmy Iovine" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/beatselectronics.jpg?1400203467" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/apple/why-apple-wants-buy-beats/feature" target="_blank">read more</a></p> Apple Beats By Dr.Dre Headphones Hi-Fi & Streaming Fri, 09 May 2014 16:11:58 +0000 Sam Kieldsen 1436835 at http://www.stuff.tv Naim's Muso is a beautiful block of Sonos-baiting aluminium http://www.stuff.tv/naim/meet-naim-muso-more-refined-music-streamer/news <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> AirPlay, Bluetooth and UPnP team up in this classy wireless speaker-packed box </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Meet Naim Muso – a more refined music streamer" alt="Meet Naim Muso – a more refined music streamer" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/naim-muso-main.jpg?1398491242" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/sam-kieldsen" title="View user profile.">Sam Kieldsen</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>So is this an amplifier, a streamer, a speaker&hellip; or what?</strong><br />Well, the Muso actually all of those things! Amp-wise, there are six 75 watt digital amplifiers inside, each driving a built-in speaker: there are two dome tweeters, two bass drivers and two mid-range drivers. So there&rsquo;s no need to hook up separate speakers at all.</p> <p>Streamer-wise, it can wirelessly suck up music using AirPlay (which works with iOS devices and iTunes-running computers), Bluetooth or UPnP, plus it has a built-in internet radio capabilities, digital and analogue inputs, and can also play music directly off an attached USB device. Several units can wirelessly sync for multi-room playback.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>It looks classy&hellip;</strong><br />Indeed it does. It uses extruded aluminium, anodised aluminium and wood in its construction, and there&rsquo;s a touch panel volume control made of a solid aluminium. It weighs a hefty 13kg too, so this isn&rsquo;t going to vibrate when you crank up the volume.</p> <p>It&rsquo;s been designed to fit in with Naim&rsquo;s Statement series of amplifiers, which allows Naim&rsquo;s designers to use terms like &ldquo;monolithic&rdquo; and phrases like &ldquo;organic, sculptural features that represent the abstract experience of music&rdquo;. Mostly, we just think it looks lovely.</p> <p><strong>Does it support Hi-Res Audio?</strong><br />But of course! WAV, FLAC and AIFF files up to 24-bit/192kHz are compatible, as are 24-bit/96kHz Apple Lossless tunes. But you&rsquo;ll have to use a wired connection for those, because tracks streamed wirelessly are limited to 48kHz.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/music/why-it-s-time-get-pumped-about-hi-res-audio/feature">Why you should be pumped about (and just a bit sceptical of) Hi-Res Audio</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="674" title="Naim Muso" alt="Naim Muso" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/naim-muso-front.jpg?1398491242" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>And how do I control it?</strong><br />Aside from the aforementioned volume control (which, yes, goes up to 11), there&rsquo;s an app for Android and iOS that allows your phone or tablet to work as a touchscreen remote, as well as a basic remote for tweaking volume, skipping tracks and turning the Muso on or off.</p> <p><strong>Sold! Where can I get one?</strong><br />You&rsquo;ll have to wait until September, unfortunately, because that&rsquo;s when the Muso goes on sale. It&rsquo;ll cost you &pound;895.</p> <p><strong><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/hot-stuff">TUNE INTO MORE HOT STUFF</a></strong></p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="180" src="http://pages.haymarket.com/stuff_signup/enews_embed" width="300"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="708" title="The Naim Muso&#039;s aluminium volume control" alt="The Naim Muso&#039;s aluminium volume control" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/naim-muso-top.jpg?1398491242" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> http://www.stuff.tv/naim/meet-naim-muso-more-refined-music-streamer/news#comments Hi-Fi & Streaming Hot Stuff Naim Thu, 24 Apr 2014 16:01:07 +0000 Sam Kieldsen 1436101 at http://www.stuff.tv History’s greatest loudspeaker is back in business http://www.stuff.tv/history-s-greatest-loudspeaker-back-business/feature <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> The Science Museum has rebuilt the Exponential Horn, a 27-foot-long speaker from 1929 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="We&#039;ve got the horn on a crane" alt="Exponential Horn" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/ExpoHornA.jpg?1398051366" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>Not everything that belongs to the Science Museum is kept at the Science Museum. Blythe House, a massive Victorian building near Shepherd&rsquo;s Bush, holds over 170,000 items in its archive, and within this vast collection of scientific curios, on top of a couple of filing cabinets, is a nine-foot-long piece of tapered metal tubing. It&rsquo;s not much to look at these days, but it&rsquo;s all that remains of what was once the most amazing speaker in the world. For museum-goers of the 1930s, the Exponential Horn was the auditory experience of a lifetime.</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/will-dunn" title="View user profile.">Will Dunn</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> the original audiophile </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Kolkowski begins his story by telling us about one of the curators at the Science Museum during the 1920s and 30s, Roderick Denman.</p> <p>&ldquo;Denman was an accomplished engineer and an obsessive audiophile,&rdquo; says Kolkowski. &rdquo;He actually had a huge loudspeaker horn built into the roof of his house, pointing down into an octagonal room that he used as the flare of a giant horn, which extended over 20 feet out of the top of his roof. So this whole room was an extension of a downwards-pointing loudspeaker, and when you were in the room, you were inside the speaker. He had reclining chairs put in there, so people could lie down right in the path of the sound.&rdquo;</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> the ultimate speaker </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Denman&rsquo;s time as Curator of Telecommunications at the Science Museum coincided with a revolution in sound. &ldquo;These new moving coil speaker drivers were arriving from the States,&rdquo; says Kolkowski, &ldquo;called the Western Electric 555W. It was the mother of all compression drivers. They were actually designed at Bell Laboratories, and people still talk in awe about these things today. There are people who believe they improve with age, which I think is nonsense, but they do last for ages - &nbsp;there are cinemas that ran them continuously for 50 or 60 years. Today, they change hands for thousands. People say it&rsquo;s the best loudspeaker ever made.&rdquo;</p> <p>While Bell Laboratories were making the perfect loudspeaker, Denman was building the perfect horn. Horn-building was an art form that had been practised by instrument-makers for centuries, but in Denman&rsquo;s hands it became a science.&nbsp;</p> <p>To get the full range of possible frequencies from the speaker, Denman knew he needed a shape that would perfectly match the energy coming from the driver and allow the speaker to play frequencies at the upper and lower limits of human hearing. Most horns at the time were curves or spirals, to save space, but Denman&rsquo;s calculations led him to a straight horn. To accommodate the deepest low-end frequencies it needed to be big - as long as a Routemaster bus, and with a mouth like a basking shark, seven feet across.&nbsp;</p> <p>For ten years, the Exponential Horn was a daily fixture in the Science Museum. &ldquo;It was part of the museum tours,&rdquo; explains Kolkowski. &ldquo;It showed what was possible in audio at the time, and it provided a benchmark for audio quality that other systems could be judged by. People who heard it at the time must have been completely blown away by the sound, they wouldn&#39;t have heard anything else like it.&rdquo;</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="We would have called it The Massive Parpspout, but that wouldn&#039;t have been mathematically accurate" alt="Exponential Horn" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/ExpoHorn_0.jpg?1398051366" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p dir="ltr">The demonstrations stopped at the outbreak of WWII, and in 1949, during building work, a wall fell on the horn and destroyed most of it. The remaining section stayed in storage at Blythe House until Aleks Kolkowski, a sound artist in residence at the museum, uncovered the story of Denman&rsquo;s mighty horn and began rebuilding it according to Denman&rsquo;s original specification.</p> <p dir="ltr">&ldquo;It took eight months to reconstruct it, using a very thick fibreglass - the original was made from a lead-tin alloy. It has an exponential shape - the width increases exponentially - so instead of having a linear increase in width, it has a very fast, steep curve. For the first ten feet it has a very gradual taper, and then it quickly gets steeper and steeper as it approaches the mouth. It was incredibly labour-intensive to make, they had to build giant formers and coat them with resin.&quot;</p> <p dir="ltr">After months of work, however, the new horn was attached to Denman&rsquo;s original loudspeaker, and the windows of Kensington rattled to a noise not heard since the outbreak of World War Two.</p> <p dir="ltr">&ldquo;It&#39;s a form of sound reproduction we just don&#39;t hear these days&rdquo;, says Kolkowski. &ldquo;It&#39;s quite unlike listening to hi-fi loudspeakers. It&#39;s completely monophonic and it&#39;s very, very directional - you have to be basically in front of it, if you wander to the side, the sound changes completely. But when you are in front of it, you get an extraordinary three-dimensional sound image, because you&rsquo;re stood in this huge horn mouth. One of the features of a horn is that it&#39;s very present - you don&#39;t get any secondary reflections - so you get this incredible impression of the band or the singer being in the room. It&rsquo;s really convincing, immersive 3D sound, from the 1930s.&rdquo;</p> <p dir="ltr">Kolkowski says spoken word, in particular, sounds &ldquo;astonishing&rdquo; through the speaker. &ldquo;It&#39;s like this enormous mouth. It&#39;s quite intimidating, in a way.&rdquo;</p> <p dir="ltr">And just as it did through the 1930s, the Exponential Horn will once more be dazzling visitors to the Science Museum, playing a mixture of archive material from the 1930s, including HG Wells and TS Eliot, along with Kolkowski&rsquo;s recordings of museum objects and talks with curators. The lunchtime concert from BBC Radio 3 will be played through it as a live, high-quality stream, Resonance FM will be broadcasting live from the installation, and a number of composers are writing or adapting works especially for the horn. You&rsquo;ll be able to see it (and more importantly, hear it) on the second floor of the museum from May 20.</p> <p dir="ltr">&nbsp;</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Pictures courtesy of the Science Museum.</em></p> <p dir="ltr">&nbsp;</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>READ HORN: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/my/bluetooth-speaker-system/gramovox-modern-speaker-system-retrofitted-sound/news">The Gramovox is a smaller, Bluetoothier horn</a></strong></p> <p dir="ltr">&nbsp;</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>READ HORN: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/my/htc/htc-s-bonkers-gramohorn-ii-big-stereo-sound-your-htc-one-no-battery-required/news">HTC&#39;s Gramohorn II speaker offers double the horn</a> </strong></p> <p dir="ltr">&nbsp;</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Five men, in a tight space, with the horn" alt="Exponential Horn" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/ExpoHorn02.jpg?1398051366" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Sound artist Aleks Kolkowski" alt="" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/ExpoHorn03.jpg?1398051366" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/history-s-greatest-loudspeaker-back-business/feature" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/history-s-greatest-loudspeaker-back-business/feature#comments Hi-Fi & Streaming Hi-Res Audio Sun, 20 Apr 2014 09:07:49 +0000 Will Dunn 1435671 at http://www.stuff.tv