I long for the perfect smartphone. You know, the one that has awesome battery life, a high resolution camera that takes clear pictures in low light, and fantastic audio quality to blow you away. I recently upgraded my phone to a Nexus 6, but found one of the things lacking was the sound quality when [...]

Posted in: Audio, Video, TV, Music Gear, News

Whenever I try to explain what a digital audio converter (DAC) does and why it’s a cool thing to have, I almost always get that “deer in headlights” look. Then – if they’re still listening – I tell them the cost of this cool DAC. That's when the look changes to “are you nuts?” Sheesh, [...]

Posted in: Audio, Video, TV, Reviews

The Bluetooth Sound Enhancing Amplifier looks like steampunk, but it has some modern features married with some old technology.  The amplifier uses two 6N3 vacuum tubes to "generate 20 RMS watts per channel of distortion-free signal, adding punch and clarity to high bit-rate MP3s, Apple Lossless, or CD-quality audio played wirelessly from an iPhone, iPad, iPod [...]

Posted in: Audio, Video, TV, Bluetooth Gear, News

Computers and headphones are replacing the home stereo as the primary source for listening to music. Wireless speakers, Bluetooth, AirPlay, and a host of other technologies have developed and matured as a result. The external digital audio converter (DAC) also belongs in this group as a solution to the problem of lousy audio from desktop [...]

Posted in: Audio, Video, TV, Computer Gear, News
CMOY_Headphone_Amp _3

Before deciding if you want – or need – the CMOY Headphone Amplifier, there is something any buyer should ask themselves: Why do you want one? Seriously, this is important, because many people will buy a headphone amp for all the wrong reasons. Consider this: If you want an amp to make your music louder and [...]

Posted in: Audio, Video, TV, iOS, Reviews

If you find your mobile device produces wimpy sound, even through headphones or earbuds, you may need to boost the output with the Mobile Music Pump.  NuForce says that today's mobile devices usually aren't powerful enough to drive many of today's quality headphones/earbuds.  The Mobile Music Pump (MMP) increases the gain by 3X or 5X [...]

Posted in: Audio, Video, TV, News

In the Cloninger family, we keep all our music in iTunes, so it's accessible from our iPhones or iPads.  Music sounds great through earphones from an iOS device, but sometimes you don't want to use earphones.  The built-in speakers in both the iPad and the iPhone are weak and wimpy, so we've tried various speakers [...]

Posted in: Audio, Video, TV, iOS, Reviews

We've reviewed Orb Audio speakers and amps a few times here at The Gadgeteer.  If you'd like a refresher of Orb's great designs and quality, check out Julie's review of their speakers, and my reviews of their Booster and Mini-T amps.  Orb Audio has just released their 2013 Mini-T amplifier, and they're making a special [...]

Posted in: Audio, Video, TV, News

There are new AirPlay speakers on the market weekly, but what do you do if you have nice speakers you'd like to continue to use?  With the Twenty AirPlay Digital Amplifier for AirPort Express from Griffin, you can turn any non-amplified speakers into AirPlay speakers.  The Twenty is a 2.1 channel Class D stereo amplifier [...]

Posted in: Audio, Video, TV, News

V-MODA, maker of the Crossfade M-80 and Crossfade LP headphones, have introduced the VAMP, a headphone amplifier with a dedicated 150mW x 2 amplifier, DAC (Digital-to-Analog convertor), optical audio output and a 2200mAh battery - all integrated into a metal case for the iPhone 4/4S. It’s based on the GO-DAP 4.0 by VentureCraft, but tweaked [...]

Posted in: Audio, Video, TV, Gear, iOS, News

Bill Henderson recently told us about the SRS Labs iWOW 3D Audio Enhancer Adapter for iOS devices (see related posts for a link to his review).  Bill found the iWOW 3D was a relatively inexpensive way to improve the audio quality of modest earphones.  Everybody wants better sound without breaking the bank, so SRS Labs [...]

Posted in: Audio, Video, TV, Reviews

The new Deep Bass Active Control Headphone Amplifier from Draco has me a bit confused. Draco likes to hype the strong, deep bass of this amp and yet, I am happy that they failed to do so. Sort of. See what I mean by confused? If you're a bass head and you bought this amp [...]

Posted in: Audio, Video, TV, iOS, Reviews

If you love music and are less than satisfied with the quality of what you’re hearing, you might consider adding a digital audio converter (DAC) to your system or computer. DACs are slowly becoming popular among serious music listeners with many companies are now making them for every budget. Let’s look at a new entry [...]

Posted in: Audio, Video, TV, Reviews
Behringer Europort EPA40

One of the most valuable public speaking tips I have ever gotten was that sheer volume is a powerful ally. It allows you to roll right over room or ambient noise, it allows the listeners to more easily focus on the message, it allows you to better modulate your tone for effect, and it gives [...]

Posted in: Audio, Video, TV, Reviews

I may not know a lot about audio technology, but I know what I like when it comes to audio equipment.  And I like the Rubicon Atomic AD/DA Preamp from Antelope Audio.  (Click the picture for a better view.)  Ignoring all its features for a moment, this has to be the most gorgeous piece of [...]

Posted in: Audio, Video, TV, News

I recently reviewed the Booster Mini Amplifier from Orb Audio, and I had ordered a pair of Mod 1 speakers so I could review the amp.  I was very surprised to also receive speakers and a subwoofer with the Booster amp, and I ended up with 2 extra pairs of Orb Audio Mod 1 speakers.  [...]

Posted in: Audio, Video, TV, Reviews
Amplicom AB900

A lot of modern electronics are not 'friendly' to people with special needs, including those associated with aging. Small buttons, small print, confusing labels, low volumes, high-pitched sounds, and so on can cause real problems for a good chunk of the population. The Amplicom AB900 Amplified Answering Machine offers a solution as far as answering [...]

Posted in: Home and Kitchen, Reviews

The Orange OPC looks like a guitar amp, but it's a computer designed for musicians.  The Orange OPC combines integrated studio-quality speakers from JBL, full versions of hand-picked music recording/editing software (£700/$1000 value), and the newly upgraded 2nd generation Intel Core series i3-2100 cpu.  Orange says "the bundled software makes use of our OPC ASIO [...]

Posted in: Audio, Video, TV, Music Gear, News
NuForce uDAC-2_4

I have mentioned in the last few reviews that I am now reviewing headphones using the NuForce uDAC-2 USB amp/DAC plugged into my new iMac, when I am not using my iPod. There’s a really good reason for this. The iMac audio output sounds like … well, let’s just say it sounds bad. Really, really [...]

Posted in: Audio, Video, TV, iOS, Reviews
Total Bithead Box

Have you ever really listened to your favorite music?  Most of you either answered yes or know where I’m going and are rolling your eyes.  To those of you in the latter group, I know you’ve been here before so I’ll make my intro nice and short.   If you do not have a good [...]

Posted in: Audio, Video, TV, Music Gear