Accessories

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Martin Pipe  |  May 20, 2015  |  0 comments

The appeal of a soundbar is obvious, but here we have something a little different – the Somle Silent White, a substantially built and easily-assembled TV stand with fixed-height (150mm) glass equipment-shelf and a integrated soundbase thrown in.

Steve May  |  Aug 14, 2014  |  0 comments

 

The prospect of high-performance wireless surround headphones should be a mouthwatering one for home cinema enthusiasts. After all, it’s not always possible to run your AV system at full throttle, so the idea of multichannel private listening has great appeal. 

Jamie Carter  |  Dec 20, 2018  |  0 comments
Imagine home cinema projectors were the same size as your smartphone. That's what's promised by this diminutive new projector from Sony, which can create 120in images and even runs off its own power source. Does that sound too good to be true?
Ed Selley  |  May 28, 2011  |  0 comments
Player courts the net Martin Pipe likes Sony’s first standalone networkable multimedia player

There must be plenty of readers who have spent the best part of a grand on a cutting-edge full HD TV, only to discover that its replacement model is ‘network-enabled’. Increasingly popular, this feature enables you to stream video from various websites, install widgets and play video content, music or photos stored on devices connected to your home network.

Martin Pipe  |  Oct 30, 2012  |  0 comments

Take the internet TV capabilities of a recent Bravia flatscreen television and shove them into a little box (that’s operated with one of the coolest-looking handsets ever to grace a multimedia player) and you get Sony’s latest entry into this competitive field.

Ed Selley  |  Nov 30, 2010  |  0 comments
‘Daddy doesn’t get no rest...’ A networked music player with a screen? Martin Pipe wants it

There are plenty of ways of auditioning music stored on a PC. A plethora of networked media players balance quality with cost is, but most are, alas, not optimised for music and require your TV to be switched on, as tracks are selected by an onscreen menu. Welcome, then, to the latest version of the famous Squeezebox networked music player, which now has an added touchscreen.

Martin Pipe  |  Jun 13, 2014  |  0 comments

Synology's DS214play offers all of the standard NAS functionality (including mobile device access and RAID configuration), plus the company's powerful DSM operating system and the ability to download apps that expand the unit's versatility. But the icing on the cake is audio/video transcoding, which is made possible by a dual-core processor and hardware-acceleration. Typically, trying to play something that your playback device can't handle will reward you with stubborn rejection or even a crash. The DS214play sidesteps this by converting, on-the-fly, the selected file into something that your player can cope with.

Ed Selley  |  Feb 15, 2011  |  0 comments
Spreading the net far and wide Serious about home media servers? Then go large. Martin Pipe has...

A speedy and convenient means of backing up data and distributing multimedia files, the well-built DS410 can accommodate an impressive total of 8TB in its four drive bays.

Ed Selley  |  May 28, 2011  |  0 comments
Well served for little outlay Martin Pipe builds a media server and has change from £100

Networked-attached storage (NAS) is damn useful. In addition to providing a convenient means of backing up important data stored on your computers, today’s consumer-orientated models typically incorporate a DLNA media server.

Adrian Justins  |  Apr 26, 2012  |  0 comments

Once synonymous with blank audio cassettes, TDK has made a welcome return from the industrial wilderness to the consumer arena with a range of quality headphones.

Ed Selley  |  Jul 07, 2011  |  0 comments
No-strings audio from a box Martin Pipe tries out a nifty package aimed at cable-phobes

This solid pair of black boxes, from speaker manufacturer Teufel, will let you send two channels of audio wirelessly. This is a handy concept if you can’t run wires to rear speakers, or simply want hassle-free, multi-room music. The cigarette box-sized transmitter sports a couple of phono sockets, which are fed with the relevant outputs of your AVR or audio system. Rather larger is the receiver, the internal amp of which can drive speakers directly. A nifty circuit automatically switches the RearStation 4 into standby in the absence of audio. Additional receivers can be bought for £180 and any number can be partnered with a single transmitter ‘within range’.

Ed Selley  |  Jul 15, 2011  |  0 comments
What's the Stor.e? Cliff Joseph goes on a file frenzy with Toshiba’s 1TB media player

There’s no shortage of ‘multimedia hard disks’ available these days, and they’re handy for people who want to store photos, music and video files and play them on a TV or music system. However, most of these devices are produced by specialist hard disk manufacturers and they aren’t always as user-friendly as they could be – so I was curious to see what additional expertise mass market brand Toshiba would bring to its Stor.E TV+.

Ed Selley  |  Oct 30, 2011  |  0 comments
Real-deal multichannel cans Genuine 5.1 from any Dolby Digital source? Steve May plugs in

These surround sound headphones ship with their own Dolby Digital 5.1 decoder module and employ a quartet of dedicated channel drivers in each ear cup. Peel away one of the felt pads and you’ll uncover a pair of 30mm drivers, one for the front left/right and the other for a surround channel, plus a 23mm driver for the centre and a large 40mm driver to handle the .1 LFE.

Ed Selley  |  Mar 07, 2011  |  0 comments
Freeview+ HD scrubs up well This PVR marries style with substance says Grant Rennell

There’s no shortage of little black boxes on the market these days, Freeview+ HD PVRs included. Kudos to TVonics then for being bold with the HD500. But has it gone far enough with its features?

Ed Selley  |  Jul 07, 2011  |  0 comments
Looping the loopthrough Adrian Justins reviews a 'bot that remembers viewing habits

How do you stand out in the crowded Freeview HD PVR market? Excluding media streaming and DLNA networking is hardly in keeping with the Freeview zeitgeist, but the DTR-Z500HD boasts a couple of handy features that look compelling. One is a built-in HDMI switcher and two, it can make basic, TiVo-style recommendations based on your recording history so long as metadata is provided by each broadcaster for the shows you choose to record.

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