LATEST ADDITIONS

Mark Craven  |  Jul 15, 2011  |  0 comments

I love my Sony PlayStation 3. So much so that a while ago, I decided that if my house was burning down, it would be the first thing I’d save (after the cat, of course). The rest of my AV gear, including flatscreen TV, receiver, speaker system, Xbox 360 and regular Blu-ray player could melt in a gloss-black pyre. As far I was concerned, my BD-deck-cum-games-console-cum-media jukebox was more precious. Yet now, with Virgin Media’s new TiVo-powered set-top box plumbed into my system, the PS3’s position as hardware numero uno is looking increasingly precarious.

Anton van Beek  |  Jul 15, 2011  |  0 comments

The Adjustment Bureau is the latest in a long line of middling Hollywood films to by inspired by the writings of Philip K Dick – in this case a loose adaptation of his 1954 short story The Adjustment Team. Essentially a discussion of the play between free will and destiny masquerading as a sci-fi-infused romantic thriller, the film stars Matt Damon as a promising congressman who falls for Emily Blunt’s carefree dancer. Trouble is, destiny has other plans for the duo, and before long the mysterious agents of the Adjustment Bureau are hot on their tale and trying to keep the pair apart to ensure that everything runs like it should.

Ed Selley  |  Jul 15, 2011  |  0 comments
Big is always best Bigscreen addict John Archer gives over his entire office to spend quality time with Panasonic’s 85in 3D plasma

So here’s my dilemma. Do I get that brand new, fully loaded Audi Q7 I’ve had my eye on for so long, do I book the family into a luxury villa at the Maldives Hilton for, ooh, a couple of months or so, or do I buy Panasonic’s TH-85VX200 plasma screen?

Ed Selley  |  Jul 15, 2011  |  0 comments
If you still aren't convinced about 3D, John Archer has no doubt at all that JVC’s latest projector will change your mind

Not everyone ‘gets’ 3D. Indeed, there are days when I’m not sure I totally need it myself. But not so today.

Anton van Beek  |  Jul 11, 2011  |  0 comments

Battle: Los Angeles desperately wants to be the Hurt Locker of alien invasion movies. Unsurprisingly, it isn’t. Despite all of the attempts at cinema vérité-style naturalism on show here (shaky-cams and crash zooms abound) there’s none of the intelligence of Kathryn Bigelow’s film at work here. Instead what we have is a traditional gung-ho action flick that feels more like Call of Duty: Modern Warfare - The Movie, only replacing fictional Middle Eastern-types with equally fictional extra-terrestrial invaders. That’s not to say the film isn’t fun. Behind all of the lazy characterisation and obvious plotting lies 116-minutes of enjoyable action and spectacle – just the thing then for those of you who have got bored of spinning ID4 on Blu-ray over and over again.

Anton van Beek  |  Jul 11, 2011  |  0 comments

Ironclad is rather nicely summed up by its director as being ‘best described as a medieval Magnificent Seven or a medieval Seven Samurai'. A fictionalised retelling of the siege of Rochester Castle by King John’s forces in 1215, the film stars Paul Giamatti as the regal despot, with James Purefoy’s Templar knight and Baron Cox’s baron leading a rag-tag group of warriors holding the castle against him. It’s very silly stuff, but filmed with so much gusto and lashings of gore that it’s hard not to get caught up in the action.

Ed Selley  |  Jul 10, 2011  |  0 comments
Raiders of the ARC With its quirky and complex setup, the ARC-based MX-700 still manages to put Richard Stevenson into a state of audio-induced euphoria

Canada: a land of sweeping mountains, pine forests and ice hockey, where maple syrup rules and giant moose walk the streets. But what the country is becoming increasingly famous for is its rather tasty AV equipment.

Ed Selley  |  Jul 08, 2011  |  0 comments
Oppo-tunity knocks When it comes to image and audio quality, Benny Har-Even can’t get enough of Oppo's new 3D Blu-ray player

They say the best things come to those who wait and in the case of Oppo’s BDP-93EU, that most certainly is true. Having already forged a reputation amongst AV-holics for its high quality, yet affordable, upscaling DVD players, its debut Blu-ray player, the BDP-831, (HCC #175) impressed UK buyers at the end of 2009 before distribution issues spoilt the party.

Steve May  |  Jul 08, 2011  |  0 comments

The Quick Start guide supplied with Yamaha’s YSP-2200 system concludes with a clear message in bold, overlarge type. It reads: ‘Then have fun for playback!’

Ed Selley  |  Jul 08, 2011  |  0 comments
Fine-tuned powerhouse With THX certified 3D and net connectivity, this high-end plasma heavyweight is no wallflower. Steve May finds beauty within the beast

LG’s plasma screens have a reputation for unassailable value, but the brand was also first to ink deals with THX and ISF for certification and calibration, and has generally impressed with the finesse of its larger panels.

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