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Ed Selley  |  Jan 20, 2011  |  0 comments
Discretely off the wall An in-wall module solved Martin Pipe’s Zone 2 audio issues

This ingenious stereo tuner-amplifier module is the same size as a double mains socket and is designed to fit into a surface or flush-mounted wall box. The KLAB20D includes a FM-only tuner with 10 presets, auxiliary inputs and an efficient 20W per channel Class ‘D’ amp. One of the auxiliary inputs is a 3.5mm socket, accessible from the unit’s front panel and thus ideal for plugging in iPods, personal CD players and so on.

Mark Craven  |  Oct 15, 2012  |  0 comments

With so many iPod/iPad docks coming to market, manufacturers are having to work harder to make their products stand out from the crowd. LG’s approach with the new ND8520 is to adopt a radical, retro-infused styling – at a time when many rivals are exploring curved edges and clean lines. Looking like an oversized, all-black Rubik’s Cube will certainly help grab buyers’ attention, but what may look good on a shop shelf doesn’t always fit in well at home.

Mark Craven  |  Sep 26, 2018  |  0 comments
LG teams up with Meridian Audio and Google to create a punchy, chatty smart speaker
Jon Thompson  |  Sep 30, 2016  |  0 comments

Around twenty years ago an essential component of any high-end home cinema was a scaler, with companies such as Faroudja and Snell & Wilcox striving to deliver the very best picture from the humble old DVD. Twenty years later all equipment seems to have some form of scaler built in. So why the need for a high-priced outboard model, such as Lumagen's Radiance Pro 4242?

Martin Pipe  |  Jan 17, 2019  |  0 comments
Set-top box brand Manhattan returns with new-look hardware and targets free-to-air timeshifters with this affordable PVR
Steve May  |  Aug 05, 2019  |  0 comments
hccbestbuybadgev3Manhattan's slick UHD-ready Freeview Play streamer is a cord cutter's delight, says Steve May

The Manhattan T3 is a 4K-enabled Freeview Play TV box for the streaming era. What sets it apart from Freeview set-top boxes of yore is that there's no hard drive onboard. This isn't a PVR in the millennial sense; it doesn't want to record.

Adrian Justins  |  May 27, 2015  |  0 comments

Promising an easy way to transmit Full HD video signals around your house using existing mains power lines, Marmitek's HDTV Anywhere consists of a rather dull-looking transmitter and receiver, each of which have an HDMI output. The transmitter has two HDMI inputs.

Martin Pipe  |  Nov 03, 2012  |  0 comments

Better-known to those of a certain age for blowing away the Bauhaus lead-singer with the sound of its iconic cassette tapes, Maxell has since embraced the digital age with gusto. One of its more interesting current products is the MMB300, a multimedia player based around the Android 2.3 operating system.

Ed Selley  |  May 28, 2011  |  0 comments
Terrestrial Terminator Martin Pipe tries the world’s first PC tuner to support DVB-T2

Until now all of the digital terrestrial tuners sold for use with PCs complied to the old DVB-T standard. But all HDTV transmissions employ the newer and more efficient DVB-T2. The T2 290e, a tiny and stylish USB 2.0 dongle, is the first to be compatible with both. It can be used with notebooks or installed on desktop machines.

Ed Selley  |  Dec 29, 2010  |  0 comments
Nero plays while video burns Martin Pipe explores a comprehensive software suite

Many PC owners will be familiar with Nero’s ‘Burning ROM’ – this disc-writing software is, after all, bundled with many drives and PCs. The Nero Multimedia Suite 10 now takes matters on a step further by enabling users to create and organise content as well as commit it to disc. When the software is installed, you’ll find a collection of applications that cover a wide range of tasks including video/photo editing, soundtrack mixing, DVD authoring, video (re)compression, disc-burning and even the backup or recovery of important computer data. Some of these programs link to others, as and when they’re needed.

Ed Selley  |  Oct 30, 2011  |  0 comments
Black box of tricks Netgear's NeoTV player offers plenty of features, but some niggles, too

It may not boast all of the ‘gadgets’ of the iXtreamer, but the NeoTV 550 will still give media moguls plenty to sink their teeth into. It’s made by Netgear, a company with a good track record in network equipment (I used its ReadyNAS Ultra 4 as one of our servers during this test).

Martin Pipe  |  Nov 29, 2012  |  0 comments

Netgear, better-known for its NAS boxes and routers, has for some time also been producing network devices of another type – media players. One of its stable is the NeoTV 550, which, thanks to its lack of Android, Boxee, etc, feels reassuringly traditional. It’s not out-dated, though – as well as networked content, the player gives you a choice of some online material, and the ability to feed media into it via USB or SD cards.

Ed Selley  |  Sep 01, 2011  |  0 comments
Pack some high vaultage Martin Pipe checks out an upmarket storage tank

Networked-attached storage (NAS) is a speedy, convenient means of backing up data. Modern units, such as the ReadyNAS Ultra 4 featured here, are also capable of streaming any multimedia files stored on them to any Smart device that can accept them. The four drive bays of the heavy and massively-built ReadyNAS Ultra 4 can each accommodate 2TB drives and so a combined total of 8TB is possible – that’s an awful lot of video, photos and music.

Steve May  |  Jul 27, 2013  |  0 comments

If you’ve been looking for a cost-effective way of adding Internet TV, be it catch-up or Video on Demand, to a non-connected telly, then Sky’s new £9.99 Now TV box must seem heaven sent. 

Mark Craven  |  May 24, 2013  |  0 comments

With Logitech recently announcing plans to offload its Harmony handset division, and most AV products now controllable via dedicated smartphone and tablet apps, you might think the last nail has been hammered into the universal remote coffin. One For All has other ideas, bringing its Simple 4 to market with a tempting £22 price tag.

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