Sunday, November 18, 2018

JBL Extreme 2 Wireless Waterproof Speaker System

I enjoy spending time outdoors. And since I really enjoy music, this means I want to bring my music with me. JBL is able to help with this need. I love how great products can get even better through future generations. Having previously reviewed the JBL Extreme, it was a no brainer to jump on the opportunity to review the new JBL Extreme 2.

Features and specs:
  • Wireless Bluetooth Streaming
  • 15 Hours of Playtime
  • IPX7 Waterproof
  • JBL Connect+
  • Durable Fabric and Rugged Material
  • JBL Bass Radiator

The JBL Extreme 2 came in a great looking color printed box with photos and specs of the product. Opening the box revealed a well protected product held in place by custom made foam. Materials used in the construction was mostly plastic with some cloth, rubber, and metal. Quality of materials used was excellent, as was the fit and finish. The JBL Extreme 2 is JBL’s flagship wireless speaker. The JBL Extreme 2 is definitely a flagship product and it showed.

I love the design of the JBL Extreme 2. There’s stereo sound in tweeter and woofer, and a pair of passive radiators on each end to help drop the frequency response a bit and give a bit more bass output. There’s a built-in 10,000 mAH battery which not only powers it on the go, but can be accessed on the go to charge your smartphone. The cloth wrap gives it an elegant look. And I love the solid built-in metal loops for the shoulder strap to carry it around.

If that wasn’t enough, JBL has also given the Extreme 2 some great functionality! You can connect up to 3 Bluetooth devices to access your music. So you as well as your family/friends can get your grove on. It works as a noise and echo canceling speakerphone. It can be linked to other JBL Connect supported speakers for whole house sound. There’s even voice integration for Siri or Google Now. And with it being IPX7 waterproof rating it’s ready for your outdoor adventures.

Now let’s hear how it sounds! Katy Perry: Dark Horse, bass had nice depth, hit really clean and with impressive low end extension and played with good authority. Vocals were smooth with better than expected texture and harmonics. And when turning to Turbulence, this little speaker system gave out some serious turbulence of it’s own! This speaker rocks hard! My room was filled with bass. Being the holiday season, I also turned to some holiday music with Mannheim Steamroller: God Rest Ye Merry Gentleman. Percussion was really crisp and clean with the cymbals and nice kick and pitch definition of the kick drums in the midbass and bass. Brass was pleasantly smooth without being too brassy. Piano sounded more natural than expected.

Bluetooth performance was also exceptional. I walked all over our building, going around 50 feet away and through several walls, and not a drop in signal. To really put it to the test, I had to take it outside, and walking 100 feet away, still no drop in signal. The JBL Extreme 2 definitely has a good quality Bluetooth radio. And when a call came in, it seamlessly switched over to speakerphone. The call quality was very good there as well on both ends of the call. When the call ended, the music came back on.

JBL has really winner in the JBL Extreme 2. The sound was excellent for a wireless speaker with crisp and clean highs, smooth mids, and full bass with very good resolution. And I can’t see where anyone will need more range of the Bluetooth then what we saw. Build quality is also excellent. With an MSRP of $299, the JBL Extreme 2 is also fairly priced for what you get. Based on it’s design, features, quality and performance the JBL has earned our Editor’s Choice award. As a holiday present it would bring a huge smile on anyone’s face. For more info and complete specs, check out their website at

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Sunday, November 11, 2018

Gourmia Fryrista Air Fryer GAF-560 Review

Why is it that everything bad for us to eat is also really tasty? Fried foods are some of the best tasting food around, but no one claims it is even remotely good for us to eat. Getting around this conundrum is simpler than we think…Air fryers are wonderful! Up for review today is the Fryrista Air Fryer GAF-560 by Gourmia.

Features and specs:
• 5 Quart Capacity
• Power: 110-240V, 50-60Hz, 1500W, ETL Plug
• RadiVection 360 Degree Technology
• Adjustable Timer and Temperature Dials
• Removable Basket and Pan
• Easy Wash and Maintenance
• ETL Listed for Safety

The Fryrista came well packaged in a cardboard box with pictures of the product all around the outside. The product itself came packaged in Styrofoam and wrapped in a bag to protect the components. Materials used in construction was mostly plastic and metal. The product was sturdy and fits on the countertop. It is also small enough to fit inside a cabinet. Also included were an owner’s manual and a recipe book.

I have teenagers, so fried food is always a big hit around here! We have used various fryers in the past, and they are messy, difficult to keep clean, and then there is the unhealthy factor to figure in. In the most recent years, we have resorted to simply cooking stuff in the oven but they just don’t taste the same. We were very excited to try this out. After following the directions to preheat the fryer, we eagerly placed taquitos in the basket and started to air fry!

We have now fried a number of things in the Fryrista and here is what we have learned…Jamming the basket with food, is not the best way to get the most food fastest. They will all be cooked, but the middle is more warmed up then the crispy fried goodness that we all want our food to have. Also, it cooks faster than the directions on packages for oven cooking, so adjust accordingly. We found that the best way to get the food to the best consistency was to do small batches, that way the air circulating could get to the most surface area of the food.

The recipe book was wonderful. Most of the recipes were crowd favorites for fried foods but some of them were unexpected, like cheesecake. The basket detaches for cleaning. Although we found that if we were cooking something from scratch, rather than from a package, it is best if we line the basket with something, a baking mat or tin foil or something. There are even dishes you can buy that fit in the basket for cooking or baking products. There are many additional hints and tips online for getting the most of your Air Fryer. We even discovered we could make popcorn in it! It is so much healthier for you, and it tastes so good. I was even able to avoid heart burn after eating mozzarella sticks!

Gourmia has a fantastic product in its Fryrista Air Fryer. It is an excellent addition to any kitchen. Due to it design, features, quality and performance the Gourmia Fryrista Air Fryer GAF-560 has earned our Highly Recommended Award. MSRP is $129. For more information and complete spec, check out their website at

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Kenwood XR eXcelon Reference DDX9905S DVD Receiver Review

I love electronics, especially car stereo. I love the way things continue to improve and get better with more and more features. I’ve seen a lot of changes in car audio over the last few decades. And I love it when the best get even better. This is just what happened at Kenwood. Kenwood gives a great bang for the buck, and if you want their best, it’s been their eXcelon line. But their best just got better with their brand new Reference series. One of those is the DDX9905S.

We’ve reviewed many Kenwood products in the past, so we’re very familiar with them. So when given the opportunity to review one their new Reference series, the Kenwood XR eXcelon Reference DDX9905S, we naturally jumped on it. Unlike in the past when the receiver came in printed box, this was a preproduction unit, so it came in a white box. That explains why we don’t have photos of the standard box that they come in. But the functionality and features are exactly the same.

Features and specs:
  • 6.75 inch HD display
  • Waze Ready
  • Built-in HD Radio
  • 2 USB ports
  • Hi-Res Audio redy
  • Wireless Android Auto
  • Bluetooth and Wi-Fi built-in
  • 2 RCA video inputs for rear view and front view cameras

I love the design and features of the new Kenwood XR eXcelon Reference DDX9905S. The internal capacitors and components are better quality. It is fully engineered and designed for improved sound. But it isn’t just the sound. They also greatly improved the picture quality with the use of a new high resolution 1280x720 display! I could say the display is gorgeous, and that description would not give it justice. It’s eye candy that will have you grinning from ear to ear every time you turn it on!!

The Kenwood XR eXcelon Reference DDX9905S has me thinking of synergy, which is what it provides. Synergy is when the whole is more than the sum of the parts. With their improvements on the audio side, as well as the improvements on the video side, the result is an overall greatly improved product that yields much better results overall.  The improved video quality, and improved sound quality, will leave a semi-permanent smile on your face. New models are released every year, and often times the improvements may be marginal. Occasionally, manufacturers will provide us a real treat and give us a new model with major improvements over the previous product. And that is exactly what Kenwood gave us with the Kenwood XR eXcelon Reference DDX9905S. The decision to upgrade just got much easier. I cannot recommend it enough for those of you that are either in the market, or considering a present to a loved one.

All of those improvements got me thinking, and I do have one gripe. It’s against the transport. The gripe is not that it’s a bad transport. It’s actually a great transport that is quick and performs very well. But it’s an aged format: DVD. Kenwood knocked it out of the park with the new reference series of receivers. But they could have sent the ball not just out of the park, but into the atmosphere with the inclusion of a blu-ray transport. However I guess that’s not really a gripe, but more of a wish, as no one in the car audio world has a blu-ray in-dash receiver. At least not yet.

For those of you that are familiar with Kenwood, the Kenwood DDX9905S includes the features that you have come to enjoy: 13 band EQ, time alignment, DSP, sound staging, and cross-overs. It can also handle Hi-Res Audio in FLAC, WAV, MP3, WMA, AAC and as well as DSD up to 11.2 MHz. There’s also Dual USB connecters, and Dual Phone Connection which allow you to operate two phones handsfree. You can also connect up to 5 Bluetooth devices, so you and your family/friends can enjoy all of your tunes as well as their tunes. It’s Spotify and Pandora Ready. There’s also inputs for a dashcam, front and rear cameras for parking assist, and iDatalink Maestro for display of your vehicles infotainments such as HVAC controls, vehicle performance info, etc. There's even an A/V output!

Big updates in features is the Web-link app. This allows the control on screen of apps on your smartphone such as Waze, Youtube, and Yelp. Also huge is the included Android Auto and Apple Carplay. Thru these features, you can access control of your smartphone for hands free calls, listen to voicemail, send or receive texts and listen to music. Also, thanks to the GPS, the DDX99055 can access your smartphone’s maps for GPS functionality, giving you directs like a receiver with Navigation built-in.

The Kenwood DDX9905S has me very excited on paper, this receiver has all the features we love and need. And while it doesn’t have Navigation built-in, thanks to Android Auto and Apple Carplay, you can get the same functionality. The real question is how well does it perform. Well, let’s find out!

As an audiophile, the Kenwood eXcelon line has always provided a great sound. And if you have high-end amps and speakers, Kenwood has provided the resolution to take advantage of high end gear. I am very glad to be able to report that the sound of the new Kenwood XR eXcelon Reference series has been improved even more. The use of the new custom-made and carefully selected internal components, as well as the tuning, has really paid off. Initially skeptical, I am now a believer.

This improvement in sound quality shone thru more particularly in Hi-Res audio. I turned to a DSD 5.6 MHz track. Eric Bibb: Meeting at the Building, as well as a multitude of other favorite tracks.  Highs were crisper and cleaner without being bright. Mids were smooth with great detail without being overly warm. Midbass and bass had excellent pitch definition, depth, fullness of bass, and authority, all without being muddy. The Kenwood XR eXcelon Reference DDX9905S proved to be transparent in sound, relaying the sound as you are used to hearing for your music, without coloring it. If you are looking at an upgrade from a previous generation Kenwood eXcelon product, the improvement in sound is not huge, but also not minuscule. There is definitely noticeable improvement in sound.

I loved the other features as well. Being able to have 2 smartphones connected proved to be a nice feature when being out with my wife. And having the ablity to have multiple phones paired with Bluetooth allowed my kids to play their music as well. I really loved the multiple inputs, to be able to play music from so many devices.

There was some disappointment as I confirmed the lack of compatibility of my LGV20 smartphone with wireless android auto. But the remote app worked very well. And if my USB cable was discovered missing thanks to a teenager, I could still get voice prompts for the navigation thru my phone via Bluetooth connection. Connecting any phone with the USB port, did give full access to the wonderful extra features.

Web-link proved to be a great and convenient feature! My kids enjoyed watching YouTube videos. And having access to Yelp made it easier to find a quality restaurant thanks to reviews. With the use of Waze, I had GPS navigation. It worked well, and I was not missing the fact hat the receiver did not have Garmin Navigation built-in, as their flagship DNX995 does.  But I do like the fact that the receiver does have its own GPS antenna that plugs into the back of the DDX9905S, that way you are not relying on the quality of the GPS antenna in your phone.

Reviewing the Kenwood Reference DDX9905S was both easy and hard. It was easy, because using the DDX9905S was so fun. The display and sound was pure candy to the visual and aural senses. But that’s also why it was hard. The experience was so pleasant that I got caught up in playing music and watching videos that I had to keep myself on task. I guess that’s one of the best complaints that can be received. The interface was also pleasantly smooth, fast and very responsive. Models in the past have had an interface that was slower, but that is not the case with the polished interface of the DDX9905S. Based on it’s design, features, quality and performance, the Kenwood XR eXcelon Reference DDX9905S has earned our Editor’s Choice Award. With an MSRP of $899, the DDX9905S is a bargain and worth every penny! For more info and complete specs, check out their website at Reference gear used: AudioControl DM-810, JL Audio XD600 6 channel amp, Massive Audio BL1, Infinity Perfect Series 3-way component speakers, Image Dynamics dual ID10 subwoofers.

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Friday, November 2, 2018

2018 Holiday Gift Guide

Stores are starting to put out the Christmas decorations. So it must be time for our annual Holiday Gift Guide. Not everyone likes the same type of items. And not everyone has the same budget. So we try to provide a good variety of items for different ideas for our loyal readers. And as usual, we will provide a full review of each item. Below is the item description, as well as the review schedule. That way you know when to come back for the full review on any items that may interest you.

We live in the digital age. While more and more are jumping from CD to downloads and streaming services. LP’s, aka records, still have a strong loyal following. For those friends or loved ones who fall into this category, a cartridge uploads could be the perfect gift. Check out this one from Audio-Technica.  It's their Evolution AT33EV phono cartridge, with an MSRP of $549.  Review is scheduled for week ending 12/2/2018.

The word is out on the sound of the built-in speakers in TV’s. Because of this, soundbars have grown in popularity. Price points for soundbars vary widely. For those on a tight budget, you should check out this new offering from Creative. It also provides additional functionality as it will also work as a portable speaker!  It's their Creative Stage Air, with an MSRP of only $49. Review is scheduled for week ending 12/9/2018.

We all love our electronic toys. But we also may want to enjoy them   The Firman W01781 has an MSRP of $649. Review is scheduled for week ending 11/25/2018. when we are away from home. A generator will fill their power requirements. If you’ve turned on the news anytime in the last year, you may have also seen the increase in floods, hurricanes, fires, etc. So the prepper community continues to grow. This generator from Firman could be perfect for your outdoor enthusiast or prepper. And it has a built-in inverter making it perfect for your electronic devices, and a good sized 2100 starting watts.

Whether you are an outdoor enthusiast, or a prepper, you will want a way to power your electronics. A portable solar kit could be a great option. It would be perfect for use with an RV, and in a pinch it could be used to power needed electronics in a disaster. Enter the Go Power GP-PSK-120, with an MSRP of $680.  Review is scheduled for week ending 12/9/2018.

We all need to eat. Many of us like to cook. And probably even more of us wish we had more time. Gormia makes some great kitchen appliances, and this Gourmia GAF560 air fryer is one of them. Not only is it a healthier option for your frying needs, it can also save time doing it.  It has an MSRP of $129.Review is scheduled for week ending 11/11/2018.

Many of us like our car audio. After all, it’s a great way to make our daily commute more tolerable. For those bassheads, a quality subwoofer is a must. But in many vehicles, it’s hard to find the space needed for the subwoofer. Image Dynamics can save the day with their ID10.  MSRP is $179.  Check out the full review here:

I love the outdoors. May of your friends or loved ones may as well. Music seems to make my activity more enjoyable. JBL makes a great series of wireless speakers, the best of which is the Extreme 2. With it being waterproof, it’s perfect for the outdoors!  You get a lot of performance and features for the $299 MSRP.  Review is scheduled for week ending 11/18/2018.

Some of us have discerning tastes, and look for the exceptional. If you are also a car audio fan, you are in luck. Kenwood just came out with a new reference series. If you are like the Men In Black and are looking for the best of the best, this is it. The Kenwood DDX9905S being excellent in quality and loaded with features is bound to get you spoiled.  It's a bargain at an MSRP of $899.  Review is scheduled for week ending 11/11/2018.

Sure, I’m a basshead, but my family is not. They still enjoy our audio, as well as hearing the full spectrum of sound. Adding a subwoofer to a factory stereo is a great way to improve the sound. One of the easiest ways to add a sub is with a powered subwoofer. The Massive Audio Boom88 is a perfect option, and it doesn’t take up much space.  MSRP is a lowly $179.  Check out the full review here:

Do you have a family member or loved one who has a creative side and likes to draw? An aspiring artist? Or maybe a college student who takes a lot of notes? A drawing tablet could be just the thing. And a great one is the Royale RoWrite Smart Writing Pad.  MSRP is only $129.  Review is scheduled for week ending 11/25/2018.

Imagine if you could improve the sound of your headphones. Reference sound is a flat sound EQ curve. But that’s impossible to have. All speakers including headphones have a sound signature with rises and dips at different frequencies. Now there is some revolutionary software that will correct the sound of your headphones to a flat sound curve. And it works with many great headphones.  It's the Sonarworks True-Fi for only $79.  Review is scheduled for week ending 12/16/2018.

The holiday season can be a stressful time of year. We want to find that perfect gift for our loved ones and friends. Our hope is that we provided some great options, with some great ides for some products. As always, we are glad to help with some suggestions. And us here at Stereowise Plus would like to with you and your family a Happy Holidays. Thanks for reading.

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Tuesday, October 9, 2018

ASUS Launches Intel Z390 Series Motherboards

-- ROG, ROG Strix, Prime, WS, and TUF Gaming series offer new performance enhancements, extensive connectivity options plus intelligent cooling and overclocking options --
Fremont, California (October 8, 2018) — Almost exactly one year after introducing six-core Coffee Lake processors alongside Z370 motherboards, Intel® is back with more cores, higher clocks and the new Z390 chipset. The new 9th Generation Intel Core™ processor family offers up to eight cores and 16 threads of parallel processing horsepower that’s perfect for content creation, heavy multitasking, and other demanding workloads. With clock speeds as high as 5GHz on the flagship Core i9-9900K, these new processors also raise the bar for gaming performance, especially if you’re streaming, recording, and chatting simultaneously.
ASUS is excited to support this new generation of Intel processors with a wide variety of new motherboards based on the Intel Z390 chipset. The collection is led by a diverse cast from the Republic of Gamers that elevates gaming and overclocking to new heights. ROG Strix offers more streamlined alternatives that include a mighty Mini-ITX model, while TUF Gaming focuses on the essentials to hit more affordable price points. Outside the gaming sphere, the Prime family serves up signature ASUS features in a professional package, and the WS sets the stage for serious workstations and prosumer builds.
There’s an ROG or ASUS Z390 motherboard for everyone, whether you’re a seasoned veteran who tunes to perfection, a hardcore gamer obsessed with performance, or a first-time builder seeking a seamless PC experience. For further details about our ROG lineup please visit ASUS ROG. Our buying guide with complete specifications, pricing and images for the entire lineup of Z390 motherboards is located at Edge Up ASUS.
ROG raises the bar for Z390 motherboards

Since its inception way back in 2006, the Republic of Gamers has set the standard for gaming and enthusiast motherboards. We created the category, and with each new generation our designers and engineers refine the formula in pursuit of faster performance, more customization, and a better overall gaming experience.
For Z390, the Maximus XI series embraces the dark side with blacked-out boards in multiple sizes and variations. It leads with the unparalleled Maximus XI Extreme for dream builds, which is followed by armour-clad near twins in Maximus XI Formula and Code. The Maximus XI Gene rethinks our approach to microATX, and the Maximus XI Hero strikes the right balance in three different flavors.
ROG Maximus XI Formula Motherboard 
Democratizing the republic with ROG Strix

ROG Strix fills the space below the Maximus series with more affordable options that retain the look and feel people have come to expect from the Republic of Gamers. These models keep must-have features for gaming and overclocking but are not as extreme as their ROG siblings. In the Z390 series, the Mini-ITX Strix Z390-I Gaming is joined by three full-sized ATX boards: the Strix Z390-E, Z390-F, and Z390-H Gaming.
Build a true battlestation with TUF Gaming

TUF offers a new direction for gaming hardware that combines builder-friendly features with battlestation-ready themes. Its unique aesthetic and focus on reliability and gaming essentials are shared by a growing collection of additional hardware we developed in-house, plus contributions from a broader TUF Gaming Alliance made up of industry titans that produce compatible parts. You can already buy matching memory, coolers, and power supplies along with a TUF Gaming case, and additional hardware is on the way.
The TUF Gaming Z390 series spreads across five different models that are ultimately very similar. You can choose between the TUF Z390-PRO Gaming and TUF Z390-PLUS Gaming for ATX along with the TUF Z390M-PRO Gaming for microATX, with WiFi-equipped versions thrown in for good measure.
WS and Prime do more than just gaming

The recent resurgence of PC gaming is partly responsible for the litany of gaming boards in our lineup, but desktops can do a lot more, especially with eight CPU cores at their disposal. Our WS and Prime motherboards are more businesslike in their approach, with an eye toward professionals and prosumers building powerful machines geared more for productivity instead of play. They also appeal to enthusiasts and even gamers who want many of the same features with an entirely different look.
The WS Z390 PRO loads up on expansion capacity for Coffee Lake workstations, while the Prime Z390-A hits the sweet spot ASUS aficionados expect with each new generation. Basic builds can get by with the Prime Z390-P and Z390M-PLUS.
ROG, ROG Strix, Prime, WS and TUF Gaming motherboards will be available for pre-order in select regions starting on October 8, 2018. Please contact your local ASUS representative for more information.
For further information, product images and specifics on the ROG, ROG Strix, Prime, WS and TUF Gaming motherboards, please check out our buyer’s guide at Edge Up ASUS. Additional images and in-depth overview of our ROG and ROG Strix motherboards is located at ASUS ROG.

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Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Introducing the EVGA B360 Micro Gaming Motherboard


October 1st, 2018 – The EVGA B360 Micro Gaming is the discerning gamer's choice for building a powerfully affordable system. This motherboard eliminates frills and unneeded features, while still providing a solid platform capable of gaming, work, or study.

Packing tried and true features, without breaking the bank! Make the EVGA B360 Micro Gaming your next motherboard and enjoy modern performance and features for a budget-friendly price.

  • Chipset - Intel® B360 Express
  • Form Factor - mATX
  • 1x M.2 Key-E CNVi-Ready Slot For Wifi/Bluetooth
  • 1x M.2 Key-M 80mm PCIe/NVME Slot
  • 5x USB 2.0 (1x internal via front panel, 4x external)
  • 2x USB 3.1 Gen 1 (internal via front panel)
  • 4x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A (external)
  • Memory - 2x DIMM Dual-Channel DDR4 2667MHz (Up to 32GB)
  • SATA - 6x Native SATA 6Gb/s Ports
  • Ethernet - Intel® i219V Gigabit LAN (10/100/1000)
  • Audio - Realtek Audio (ALC888) + SV3H615 3D Headphone Amp
  • PCIe - 1 Slot x1, 1 Slot x4, 1 Slot x16

Special Features:
  • 8 Phase VRM
  • EVGA E-LEET X Tuning Utility™
  • SATA Ports Support Hot Plug
  • M.2 NVMe SSD Support
  • PCIe 3.0 Support For Low Power Consumption
  • 3x 4-Pin PWM Controlled Headers
  • 5.1 Channel HD Audio Support with EVGA Nu Audio
  • Trusted Platform Module
  • 150% Increase in CPU Gold Content

About EVGA  
EVGA is the #1 NVIDIA authorized partner in channel sales throughout North America and Latin America and a leading Power Supply Manufacturer. Based on the philosophy of intelligent innovation, market knowledge, and the real time operation, EVGA continues to identify the need in the market place and providing the solution to that need. By offering product differentiation, 24/7 tech support, a 90 day Step-Up program, and other customer focused programs, EVGA is a clear leader in all categories: etail, retail, distribution, and system integration. With headquarters in Brea, CA, EVGA’s global coverage includes EVGA GmbH in Munich, EVGA LATAM in Miami, and EVGA Hong Kong. For further information online about EVGA, visit:

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Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Legendary Klipschorn Gets Monumental Updates

INDIANAPOLIS, IND (September 19, 2018) — Klipsch®a tech-driven audio company, is pleased to announce that its legendary Klipschorn® speaker has received modern acoustic and cosmetic updates that further enhance the replication of a live music performance. The ultra-efficient Klipschorn was developed in 1946 by audio pioneer and company founder Paul W. Klipsch to enable people, for the first time ever, to experience the power, detail and emotion of a live performance at home. It is the only speaker in the world to be in continuous production for more than 70 years, and has remained relatively unchanged since its inception.

The new Klipschorn AK6 features a fully enclosed low frequency horn cabinet, offering more placement versatility in the listening room as the enclosure functions as a corner, delivering powerful bass performance and improved imaging. New 1” titanium tweeter and 90° x 40° Tractrix® horn extends the output of high frequencies beyond 20kHz. An updated passive network features premium grade AudioQuest® internal wiring.

Each Klipschorn continues to be designed and handcrafted in the USA. All-new real wood finishes options include natural cherry, satin black ash, and American Walnut to complement modern furniture. The Klipschorn loudspeakers are grain-matched using wood veneer panels from the same timber, resulting in a speaker pair that is indistinguishable from the other.

A retro-style silver luster grille cloth complements each wood veneer and features a nostalgic script “Klipschorn” cast zinc logo. The redesigned riser base, input panel, and cable management system ensure the cabinet’s clean lines.

The Klipschorn AK6 (U.S. MSRP $7,499 ea) speakers are available now at certified Klipsch Heritage retailers and at For more information on Klipschorn AK6, visit

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Tuesday, September 18, 2018

E.A.T Brings High-Performance Vinyl Playback Components to North American Market

E.A.T Brings High-Performance Vinyl Playback Components to North American Market

The Jo N05 moving coil cartridge, LPS dual linear power supply and Massive Weight are upgrade essentials for vinyl aficionados

(Lake Grove, NY) September 17th, 2018 – VANA, Ltd. (, the North American distributor for fine audio products has announced the arrival of the European Audio Team (E.A.T) Jo N05 moving coil cartridge, the LPS dual linear power supply and the 800-gram Massive Weight. All three components have been engineered to help vinyl enthusiasts truly elevate the performance of their turntable.

Moving Coil Cartridge
The Jo N05 moving coil cartridge, acclaimed in recent reviews, is an ideal choice packaged with any high-performance turntable or as an upgrade or replacement cartridge. A proprietary design from E.A.T., the Jo N05 cartridge body (and stylus guard) are constructed of polyamide and are produced via an advanced manufacturing process called Selective Laser Sintering (SLS). This process results in a final structure that is virtually resonance-free and thus ideal for a phono cartridge assembly. The result is a very detailed, low distortion, natural and immersive musical presentation—the tonal signature that E.A.T. was targeting for this exceptional product. The Jo N05 features a nude stylus configuration. The E.A.T. Jo N05 moving coil cartridge is available now in an attractive limited edition Walnut demo box with an MSRP of $1395. Cartridge alone is MSRP $1295 and available in specially priced packages with E.A.T. turntables.  

Dual Linear Power Supply
The E.A.T. LPS is a single chassis solution offering dual voltage DC outputs for providing clean, stable power to many E.A.T. turntable models as well as the E-Glo S phono preamp. The LPS can simultaneously deliver both 15-volts and 18-volts via the 2.1mm, XLR 4-Pin, and 2.5mm cables that are included with the LPS. High quality bridge rectification is employed along with ultra-fast diodes and an 8800uF filtration bank to eliminate unwanted noise, and the LPS employs a fully discrete internal voltage regulator. This design results in very low noise and superior regulation, eliminating any chance of RFI interference reaching the audio path. The LPS increases speed stability on a turntable and lowers the noise floor on a phono preamp, supplying a smoother, more dynamic sound. The E.A.T. LPS is available now with either Macassar or Gloss Black end caps at an MSRP of $1295. The LPS is available in a packaged combo with the $2995 E-Glo S phono preamp at an astonishing MSRP of $3795, a savings of $495. 

Massive Weight
The 800-gram EAT Massive Record Weight delivers improved clarity at all frequencies and enhanced imaging characteristics. The E.A.T. Massive Weight is constructed from an alloy that resists unwanted resonances. The Massive Weight uses three rings of polymer compound, including where it makes contact with the LP record, similar to that deployed by E.A.T. in their turntable suspensions. The E.A.T. Massive Weight is available now with an MSRP of $195.

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Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Image Dynamincs ID10 Ultra Low Frequency Car Subwoofer Review

When it comes to trucks, crew cabs and extended/king cabs are getting really popular. The days of single cabs are not gone, but they are few and far between. If you want extra bass, you’re limited by the space you have under the rear seat. While many will give you enough space where a true shallow mount won’t be required, you also won’t be able to get a high power sub with a huge magnet under the back seat. For those of you in this boat, you want a fairly shallow mounting sub that can still handle a decent amount of power and play sufficiently loud and deep. This desire is also had by many non-truck owners, as compact vehicles also do not have much trunk space. Up for review is the Image Dynamics ID10.

Features and specs:
Imp 2/8 ohms:                         Nominal Resistance
Re  1.8/7.2 ohms                     DC Resistance
Fs  23.2Hz                               Resonant frequency
Qes  .387                                 Electrical "Q"
Qms  3.714                              Mechanical "Q"
Qts  .35                                   Total "Q"
Vas  2.43 cuft (69 liters)         Equivalent volume
Xmax  17.0mm                       One way linear
Sd  350 cm2                            Cone area
Spl  86.5db                              Sensitivity
Pwr  250rms/450max              Power Handling

I love the design of the Image Dynamics ID10. At only 5.12” mounting depth, it is shallow enough to work in most applications. As a 10 inch driver you can get away with using it in a smaller enclosure with as little as 0.40 cubic airspace! Rated at only 250 watts RMS, it also doesn’t take a lot off power to push them. So a small sub amp that can be mounted under the front seat would work. Also, the sub channel on all 5 channel amps will be able to push it as well.

The best part I think is its frequency response. Image Dynamics actually calls it an Ultra Low Frequency Transducer. I was actually shocked by it’s specs! Most 10’s in a ported enclosure can be tuned to the low 30’s in a fairly large enclosure, or in the 40’s in a sealed enclosure. But in a 1.14 cu ft ported enclosure it will go down to 32hz, or 23hz at -3 db in car! And a 0.40 cu ft sealed will get down to 21hz in Car!! That is seriously low. While most bass is in the 50hz range, what this means that you won’t miss any of your music, no matter what style of music you listen to.

The Image Dynamics ID10 came in a nice looking color printed box, with images and specs of the subwoofer. And given it’s specs, it is definitely a subwoofer! I really liked the power range chart on the box. While it’s rated to 250 watts RMS, it looks like if you keep it under 400 watts of clean power you’ll be ok, according to the chart.

Opening the box revealed a well protected subwoofer held in custom cut out cardboard. While this is Image Dynamics entry level subwoofer, it is still Image Dynamics. This is not a entry level driver. The basket is stamped steal, but it does have some great features, like the push style terminals, sewn-in tinsel leads, poly/mica cone and santoprene surrounds. Aside from not having a cast basket, the rest of it does not look entry level. And at it’s power rating, the stamped basket works just fine.

This Image Dynamics ID10 has me very excited. As a musician, I listen to all music types, including classical. So low bass output is important to me. I like to get as close to 20 hz output as possible. That is extremely difficult, especially for a 10 inch driver. I haven’t found any other 10 inch driver with as shallow of a mounting as the ID10, that will play that deep. So we are really excited to review the Image dynamics ID10. For you truck owners, the back seat is a perfect place for a pair of ID’s. So we are reviewing a pair of ID10’s.

When it comes to performance, ported will play louder than sealed. It also tends to play deeper. But ported doesn’t have that dynamic tight impact that you get with sealed. So the Image Dynamics ID10 in a sealed enclosure will give you the dynamic tight bass, and also give you the ultra deep base. And reviewing two subs, should give the output of a single ported subwoofer. So let’s now see how they perform.

I started things out on our test bench with some sine waves.  We used a sealed enclosure with .82cu ft per sub.  Even without any cabin gain, we had some great output, especially at its recommended 250-350 watts RMS.  We pushed things just a tad and fed 400 watts RMS to each sub.  And on the bench we measured frequency response down to 20hz at -3db, with output up to 108db measured at about 1 meter.  For a 10 inch driver in a sealed enclosure....very impressive!  Now it's time for the music.

I turned things real deep right out of the gate with Also Sprach Zarathustra.  This is the popular track from 2001 A Space Odyssey.  The low rumble at the beginning of the  track was really clean, well sustained, and the cone was well controlled by the motor.  And it played not only really really deep, but also played with very good authority.

Next up was New Order: Blue Monday.  As expected from a sealed enclosure, the quick beats at the very beginning was very quick, clean without skipping a beat, or having a hint of muddiness.  They also were nice and tight with very good impact.  Next the beats got some added depth, and the ID10's continued to impress with the low end extending.  The bass was still nice and clean, and played loud with good authority.

Now it was time for another great bass track, Katy Perry: Dark Horse.  Here the bass was even deeper.  Yet the ID10's played really clean, with very deep extension, and smooth bass.  And they hit really hard. 

Last but not least was one of my all-time old school favorites, Techmaster PB: Activate, and Time To Jam. These tracks can cause fits due to the deep base and high output.  As we expected, the Image Dynamic ID10's continued to impress.  Beats were quick, clean, and not a hint of muddiness.  The beats not only were really deep, but they hit hard and played with very good authority. It's just the kind of quality bass that I love to hear.

I had to keep reminding myself that I was only pushing 400 watts to each subwoofer.  Of course it did not have the kind of bone rattling output that a massive power handling sub, like the 1000 watt RMS IDMAX10.  But they still played better than expected for the power they were given.  Output however is only part of the equation.  Sound quality is also important, and Image Dynamics has you covered here as well.  Not only did they play loud for the power given, they were also very musical as well!  And that's probably the best compliment you can give a sub.  Based on their design, features, quality, and performance, the Image Dynamics ID10 has earned our Highly Recommended Award.  For more info and complete specs, check out their website at  

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Monday, September 3, 2018

Massive Audio Boom 88 Powered 8 Inch Car Subwoofer Review

I love car stereo. And I’m a bit of a bass head. I grow up using dual 12’s in my car. Not only did my whole car shake, but people heard me coming down the street. I have since converted to 10’s. I no longer want people to hear me coming, or know what I have. But that much bass isn’t for most people. Factory car stereo systems have come a long way. But they still don’t have much bass.

For many, they may think that extra bass, more than what came with the factory radio is not needed. I agree that a ton of bass isn’t for everyone. But look at it this way; imagine going to a movie theater to watch a movie, and the subwoofers were not working. The whole experience would be lacking. Bass does add to the experience. For those who don’t need or want a lot of bass, but want to add to your music enjoyment. There is a simple solution. Enter the Massive Audio Boom 88.

Features and specs:
  • 8" driver
  • 4 Ohm 400 Watts Max Power
  • 200w x 1 RMS
  • 0 - 12dB @50Hz
  • 250mVrms ~9mVrms
  • 50Hz~150Hz @-3dB
  • Class A/B Built-In Amplifier
  • Built-In OEM Hi Level Inputs
  • Heavy Duty Aluminum Heatsink
  • Hi-Fi Capactior Filters for Cleaner Sound Reproduction
  • Variable Low Pass Crossover: 50Hz ~ 150Hz @ -3dB
  • Ground Loop Isolator
  • Reverse Voltage & Over Voltage 5 Way Protection
  • 13.4" x 9.8" x 2.8"
The Massive Audio Boom 88 came in a nice black box with features and specs printed on the box. Opening the box revealed a well protected subwoofer sitting well protected in custom cut out Styrofoam. Pulling out the Massive Audio Boom 88, I was very impressed. Materials used in the construction was mostly aluminum with some plastic on the controls. Quality of materials used as well as the quality of construction is very good. And it felt very solid in hand. Also included is the owners manual, mounting screws and bass remote.

I love the design of the Massive Audio Boom 88. All of the connections and controls are on one side, the all aluminum design is well made. With the built-in OEM Hi-level inputs, it's simple to splice into your factory wires if you don't want to have to deal with the RCA's. And I love the brushed aluminum top plate. The sides are ribbed for cooling and the woofer is top facing. And with a power rating of 200 watts RMS, 400 watts max. That’s a good amount of power for an 8 inch sub. It has the makings for great performance. Let’s see how it actually sounds.

AC/DC Back in Black: Kick drum had nice low end extension and a very nice punch. It played nice and deep, with good authority.

New Order-Blue Monday : The beats really shined! In the intro, they were very quick, hit like a hammer, and were both dynamic and really crisp and clean with great pitch definition, and spot on with out missing any beats or any signs of muddiness. The following beats really extended the depth, and still played really clean and with lots of authority and impact.

Techmaster PB – Activate: the bass here pushed it ot it’s limits, but it still preformed well. Bass beats were extended, played very deep, but still played with good authority and just a little bit of muddiness. This track is brutal on standard subwoofers, but the Massive Audio Boom 88 hung in there and played nice output and depth, moreso than I expected.

I must say I was more impressed with the Massive Audio Boom 88. I’ve never been interested in the small under seat powered sub. I knew I would want more. But Massive Audio takes that design…massive! The Massive Audio Boom 88 performed much better than expected. It filled the vehicle with nice low end extension. It wasn’t bone rattling, but it did the job. For someone like me, it’s perfect to put in the family car, so I can enjoy some bass when driving that vehicle. My wife, also a musician, loves it. It provides some nice low end bass, but isn’t too much. If this is how you like your bass, go now. The price is currently only $100 on Amazon! It would be a good deal at $200. Based on it’s design, features, quality and performance, the Massive Audio Boom 88 has earned our Highly Recommended Award. For more info and complete specs, check out their website at Reference gear used: Kenwood Reference Series DDX9905S, Audio Control DM-810 Processor, JL Audio 6 channel amp,  German Maestro 3-way component speaker system. And I think Ferris Bueller said it best after the end credit of that movie; “You’re still here? ..... Go.” For only $100, go, and buy it now! Here's the link:

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