The good news is that the Sonos Playbar, on the market for several years now, is a superbly finished and packaged TV soundbar product. Set up is pretty easy, compatibility with your TV’s remote is straightforward, and its simple connectivity will make it an easy hookup with the majority of TVs. It’s easy for a Sonos fan to recommend to a friend who asks about soundbars, as long as that friend is upgrading from the TV’s own speakers.
It is possible to play high resolution 192 kbps 24 bit (or 96 kbps 24 bit) files on your Sonos system, sort of. This depends on downsampling the files, but more importantly hinges on the unpublished capability of Sonos to support 48 kHz / 16 bit / 1536 kbps, higher than the officially stated 1411 kbps. So why does this matter? It matters because 1.088435374 is an ugly number. Continue reading →
Car manufacturers are Jedi Masters of product design based on their mastery of customers’ perception of their cars more than any innate design quality. Part of the magic of any expensive mechanical product is the sound, and car companies have perfected a variety of devices that deliberately add interior sound to boost the sensation Continue reading →
KEF’s M500 headphones are the mellowest product I’ve ever put on my head, short of the floppy hat I wear skiing. If you listen to real music played through real devices, meaning CD and MP3 quality sound played from iPhone or equivalent, these will be a good match. By real music, I mean recordings that might not be the first you would think of as test or demonstration music – music that is not perfectly recorded. Follow me on my musical exploration from streamed MP3s to CD to Blu-Ray Continue reading →
Sometimes I am blown away with what I don’t know. That’s not to imply I think I know everything. Instead, I’ve been in the audio business a while and I’ve seen pretty much everything. Recently I discovered a new dimension of the audio biz – a solid and growing commercial audio niche known as Sound Masking. It’s been around for over 50 years, and a few months ago I joined one of the industry-leading companies, Cambridge Sound Management. Our product plays a special kind of noise in office environments ON PURPOSE – which for an audio guy like me first sounded, frankly, bizarre.
Sonos gets beaten up because it lacks a battery-powered product. Well known for its focus and a conservative product line-up, Sonos requires you to take a plugged-in extension cord wherever you want to enjoy the system – such as on your deck or by your back-yard pool. My own experiments with battery-powering a PLAY:1 give insight on why Sonos is stubborn, besides just their determined desire to own the domestic space (rather than audio in the car, or on the beach for that matter). Continue reading →