Imperia by Oswalds Reimagines Audio Speakers

The way audio is transmitted to the consumer has evolved over the past decade or so, from higher quality headphones, well, some brands more than others, to the diverse sound systems that have incorporated today’s modern MP3 players, Smartphone’s and also transformed the flat audio from paper-thin Televisions into a Cinema experience. Audio company OMA (Oswalds Mill Audio) have decided that modern speakers are just too rudimentary in their design and have therefore announced a product by the name of the “Imperia”.

Below is an image and also a summary of this eye-catching product.

  • The Imperia has a four-way horn system with a vertical array of conical horns covering 100 Hz to 20 kHz.
  • Two rear loaded subwoofer horns using a massive 21″ neodymium woofer handling 20 Hz-100 Hz.
  • A special OMA sub is 104db 1w/1m and is powered by its own solid state amplifier.
  • The system as a whole is extremely efficient at 105db 1w/1m and is entirely time aligned.
  • The 100hz and 300hz wooden conical horns are made from a choice of solid Pennsylvania Black Walnut, Cherry or Ash.
  • The Dimensions are H 86″ D 60″ (max depth at horn) W 41″ Base footprint 41″ x 41″

OMA have stated that they are the “only manufactures to use the straight-edged cone speaker design, this is due to the fact that such a design will not add to the sound wave deformity”

I know what you’re thinking, how much? Answer is too much when you consider this product is expected to retail for around $280,000 dollars (£191,744) The product is certainly unique and provides a new dimension to sound systems, but I think I will stick to my current audio setup for the time being until this design is available at a considerably cheaper price.

Harmon Kardon Expands Omni Wireless Speakers Range @ CES 2016

CES 2016: Since the arrival of the Sonus wireless music system, audio manufacturers including Bose and Harmon Kardon have been trying to offer a legitimate alternative. Harmon Kardon’s Omni range of wireless speakers has just received a substantial update and now includes the Omni 10+, Omni 20+ and Omni 50+. Additionally, the company is producing the OmniBar+ soundbar and Adapt+ accessory which allows you to setup multi-room speaker configurations with your existing hardware. The speakers also support audio files up to 24-bit/192kHz and capable of streaming music from popular services like Google Cast. On another note, the speakers incorporate Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, Ethernet and standard audio out connectors.

Pricing starts from $199 for the Omni 10+ all the way up to $999 for the OmniBar+. This is quite an expensive proposition although high end audio solutions usually incur a hefty cost.

Luxa2 Lavi S Wired & Wireless Headphones with External Speaker Review

Introduction


Luxa2 are well-known for their premium grade mobile products, but today, we’ve got something a little more unique from them, a set of headphones that also act as speakers! The Lavi S are packed full of features, with the option to use them as a wired headset, wirelessly via Bluetooth, as on ear headphones, or as a mobile speaker to share your music or make hands-free calls. This interesting mixture of features certainly caught our attention, so I’m really eager to test them out and see how well they perform.

The Lavi S are very well equipped, with a pair of powerful 40mm drivers for the headset component, then another 40mm driver for the loud-speaker. There’s a built-in 1000mAh rechargeable battery for wireless usage, which can offer 30 hours headset use or 3 hours speaker use, on-headset controls for media control, a foldable design and more!

Check out this quick guide courtesy of Luxa 2 for a quick look at some of these features.

In the box, you will find the headset, a male-to-male  3.5mm cable for wired usage and a micro USB to USB cable for charging the headsets internal battery.

First impressions of the Lavi S are promising, a mixture of high-quality plastics and soft-touch rubber grip coatings, that give the headset a good quality look and feel.

Down the left side, you’ll find the drivers have an open back design, which is handy given that there is a speaker on each side! The headband is extendable, allowing for a more comfortable fit on a wide range of head sizes. The headband feels pretty strong and it holds firmly in place once adjusted.

On the side of the right ear cup, you’ll find a wide range of controls. There’s the headset/speaker toggle switch, an LED indicator, and a power/pairing button.

Further round the same side, you’ll find volume up and down buttons, the DC IN for charging the headset, a line-in port for the 3.5mm cable and a pin-hole microphone; that’s a lot of buttons and features for just one side of a headset!

The left driver is the same overall design, but it doesn’t have a plethora of control switches around the edge.

The padding on the ear cups is a soft leather, that provides a comfortable fit over your ears and it’s close-fitting enough to help dampen ambient sounds.

The headband has a soft rubber padding, it’s not a lot, but it’s surprisingly comfortable and helps hold the headset firmly in place on your head.

The top of the headband has a nice black rubber coating, that looks really nice and it is also hard-wearing.

Finally, the headset has a foldable design, which makes it a lot easier to store the headset on your backpack between uses.

Iiyama Expands Its Display Offering with the New 24″ ProLite X2481HS and XB2481HS

Iiyama has added two new products to its 24″ display lineup, the ProLite X2481HS and XB2481HS, featuring a slim bezel design, FullHD resolution, LED backlights and the enhanced VA panel technology.

The company states that due to their VA LCD panel technology which is able to provide vivid and bright colours, along with high contrast and superior viewing angles, the display solutions are perfect for anyone working in the Photography, Graphic or Web design industry. Also, their multi-monitor configuration makes it a perfect solution for people working to manipulate multiple applications at the same time.

The ProLite XB2481HS features an ergonomic stand which rotates, tilts and its height can be adjusted by 13cm. Another feature consists of its ability to pivot between landscape and portrait mode. Both solutions are stated to come with integrated speakers and a wide range of connectivity options as shown below.

Iiyama says that the new generation ProLite XB2481HS and X2481HS are now available across Europe and are standard offered with 3 years ‘on-site’ Advance Exchange Warranty.

Source: Iiyama

Vamp Smart Cube Rejuvenates Old Speakers

It used to be that the central audio hub in every household was the Hi-Fi system. A combination record player, tape deck, and CD player, unified in a single system, hooked up to two stereo speakers.

The advent of digital media has undermined these old familiar ways. Smartphones and mp3 players now carry shelf-fulls of music within their tiny cases. Users now listen to music by either headphones or tinny Bluetooth speakers, while 10,000 old speakers are sent to UK recycling centres every month. But now, inventor Paul Cocksedge has developed a bridge between old and new: the Vamp.

Vamp is a Bluetooth smart cube that can be hooked up to a conventional speakers via terminal or cable. Pair the Vamp with a smartphone or mp3 player and the audio is output to the connected speakers. Your Hi-Fi may be obsolete, but Vamp offers its speakers a new lease of life. The only downside is that, as of yet, the Vamp does not support stereo sound, meaning both left and right channels are combined into mono output.

“I kept seeing Post-it notes on old speakers saying, ‘Please take me home’. I thought, these are beautiful and functional. Their designers cared for them. Why are people throwing them away?” Cocksedge lamented. He realised that “people are communicating with technology differently now. We play music through our smartphones. No one has a CD player or record player any more. So how do I design something that links the new to the old?”

Vamp is available now, priced at £49.99.

Source: The Guardian

Samsung Uncovers Curved 27-Inch Monitor

Samsung have revealed details of their new 1080p curved monitor; which is geared towards a more immerse entertainment experience. The 27-inch Samsung S27D590CS is aimed at gamers and heavy video-watchers where the curved screen is meant to create a more subtle 3D effect with a greater sense of depth and wider field of view.

The monitor has a wide 178-degree viewing angle and a 1920 x 1080-pixel resolution. The grey-to-grey response time is 4 ms and the screen has a refresh rate of 60 Hz. It has plenty of connection options with VGA D-sub, HDMI and DisplayPort. Besides a set of 5 watts dual speaker the monitor also has pass-through for headphones.

The monitor has a sleek design with a metallic silver stand and the thin black bezel; it doesn’t have many ergonomic options or abilities, but it can be tilted up and down from -2 to +20 degrees and it also supports 100 mm VESA wall mounts. I believe the size to be very fitting for a curved display, as the larger screens the effect is barely noticeable due to the width and on phones it’s more of a gimmick than anything else.

In theory at least, the curved design should allow for a smother view to the corners of the screen, as your eyes don’t need to refocus for the change in distance. This factor will be heavily increased when running multi-monitor setups, giving you a smooth view all the way to your peripheral vision.

The monitor has a MSRP of $430 and will go on sale in the US on October 1st. As for the rest of the world, your guess is a good as mine. While the specification don’t impress too much when looking at the price, you have to consider the fact that curved monitors still are a niche market; a premium has to be expected, but does it offer enough to convince you?

Thank you Samsung for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of Samsung

Wavemaster Moody 2.1 Rev 2 Speaker Review

Introduction


It was just over a year ago that we reviewed the Wavemaster Moody 2.1 speakers and I absolutely loved them. For their price range, I thought they looked great, sounded superb and offered great value for money, which is why I awarded them with our Bang for Buck award, as a reflection on them being a great return on investment.

Now the team at Wavemaster have taken their speakers and made a few minor, but potentially important tweaks to their design and performance, and while they’re being launched under the same name as the old model, this is officially the revision 2 model of the Moody 2.1 speakers which I’ll be reviewing today.

Specifications Rev 2

  • Speaker drivers: subwoofer 16,5 cm bass driver, satellites 7 cm wide range drivers with phase-plug
  • Amplifier: integrated with 3 separate channels
  • Output power (RMS): subwoofer 35 Watt, satellites 2 x 15 Watt
  • Frequency response: subwoofer 30 – 150 Hz, satellites 150 Hz – 20.000 Hz
  • Input sensitivity: subwoofer line-in 500 mV, remote line-in 250 mV
  • Cable remote: with on/standby function, volume control, headphone jack (amplified) and line-in
  • Satellite speakers: with compact design (wall mountable), detachable front covers and 3m connection cable
  • Subwoofer: wooden cabinet with bass reflex technology, bass control, treble control and main power switch
  • Power supply: internal, 100-240 Volt ~ 50/60 Hz, 0.7A max., Standby Power <0.5 W (230V)
  • Connection: 3,5 mm mini stereo plug or RCA
  • Dimensions (WHD): Satellites =  90 x 145 x 103 mm, Subwoofer = 245 x 248 x 275 mm

The speakers come in a nicely designed box with a bunch of high quality images of the speakers on each side, great for those who are shopping for them in a retail store as it gives you a clear indication of what you’re buying.

In the box you’ll find two satellite speakers, a sub woofer, cabled controller, owners manual, RCA to 3.5mm cable and a 3.5mm to 3.5mm cable.

AOC Launch New IPS Panels Featuring ONKYO Audio

It’s safe to say that the built-in speakers that we get in many of todays monitors are not exactly what I would call outstanding. Generally they are ideal for the system audio output that we get in say Skype, Windows and other various applications, however if you’re thinking about watching a film or listen to music through them, you really are better off either using headphones or simply getting a proper powered speaker system.

Whilst there have been one or two panels that have cropped up over the last few years that boast better audio, they have not really been all round performers with less attention to detail going into the visual performance than we would typically see. As one of the leading monitor manufacturers in today’s market, AOC have announced the arrival of two new 23.8″ IPS panels which have been paired up with a set of ONKYO speakers in the base to give a far richer audio experience.

The two monitors, which are virtually identical to each other feature LED backlit IPS panels sporting full HD 1920 x 1080 resolutions with a 5ms response time, VGA and two HDMI inputs (one with MHL support) and two 7W speakers from ONKYO. The difference between the i2473Pwm panel with an MSRP of around £159 and the premium i2473Pwy at around £189 is the addition of Miracast wireless capabilities, allowing users to connect their mobile devices to the display and stream content directly from their phone or tablet without the need for any wires.

Both panels are available to purchase now, with the aim of bringing clearer and more defined audio to the monitor market.

Source: Press Release

Wavemaster Stax 2.1 Speaker Review

Introduction


Today we see the return of Wavemaster in the eTeknix office, it’s been a few months now since we last got to take a look at one of their products, so were more than happy to try them out once again. When the brand first entered the UK market we tried out their MX3+ 2.1 speakers and Moody 2.1 speakers, both of which were fantastic sounding and great value for money, something that earned each product one of our eTeknix awards, so I’m hoping that winning formula will be repeated today with the new Wavemaster Stax 2.1 speaker system.

Priced at around £50 here in the UK the speakers are hardly the play thing of the enthusiast music listener, but they’re still entering a very competitive section of the market. With brands such as Creative, Logitech, Trust & Genius all offering their own hardware for around the same price, much of which is very good given the price and they’re already more established brand names, so the Wavemaster is going to need to stand out a little bit for people to make the leap from a brand they’re more familiar with. Of course if the performance is anything near as good as we heard with the last two Wavemaster speakers we tested, then the Stax 2.1 speaker system has nothing to worry about.

As you can see from the specifications below the speakers themselves only have tiny 25.4mm drivers, but they’re backed up by a 13cm bass driver, which again isn’t especially big, but it should pack a good enough thump for most users and the sub and speakers output 26 Watt and 2 x 10 Watt respectively. There are a few other features here, but I want to show them in more detail in a moment.

  • Speaker drivers: subwoofer 13 cm bass driver, satellites 2,54 cm wide range drivers
  • Amplifier: integrated with 3 separate channels
  • Output power (RMS): subwoofer 26 Watt, satellites 2 x 10 Watt
  • Frequency response: subwoofer 30 – 150 Hz, satellites 150 Hz – 20.000 Hz
  • Input sensitivity: subwoofer line-in 500 mV, remote line-in 250 mV
  • Cable remote: with on/standby function, volume control, headphone jack (amplified) and line-in
  • Satellite speakers: with slim design (wall mountable), metal stands and 3m connection cable
  • Subwoofer: wooden cabinet with bass reflex technology, bass control, treble control and main power switch
  • Power supply: internal, 100-240 Volt ~ 50/60 Hz, 0.7A max., Standby Power <0.5 W (230V)
  • Connection: 3,5 mm mini stereo plug or RCA
  • Dimensions (WHD): satellites =  Ø 100 x 205 mm, subwoofer = 180 x 280 x 265 mm

The Stax come neatly boxed and for once they include a UK plug, no big deal for most I know, but their last models featured European connectors and required the use of an adaptor.

Included in the box, aside from the obvious speaker set is a simple user manual, a 3.5mm male to male cable and an RCA to 3.5mm female cable.

Speedlink Jugger 2.1 Speaker System Review

Introduction


Today I’ll be taking a look at the new Speedlink Jugger 2.1 speaker system, a budget friendly solution for those who want to give their multimedia an extra kick and bigger sound, but that don’t want to stretch their budget too far.

With 16 years industry experience, Speedlink have already sold over 10 million sound systems, making them one of Europe’s leading brands for multimedia solutions, and this is especially true for the PC and gaming markets. With that experience, they’ve no doubt got plenty of knowledge and experience, so I’m expecting to see much of that reflected in the product we’ll be taking a look at today.

Priced at around £45 Inc. shipping here in the UK the system is obviously not enthusiast grade audio equipment, but it’s priced just right to go head to head with systems from Wavemaster, Logitech, Creative and similar brands who all have products around the same budget, and many of those products are pretty good too (for this price), so it will be interesting to see how the Jugger 2.1 holds up and how well it holds up to Speedlinks own words about its performance (see below).

“Take your games’ sound quality to the next level and transport yourself to a powerful dimension in sound with the JUGGER 2.1 Subwoofer System. It combines the quality of cutting-edge audio technology with the high standards you place on your speakers’ performance. The high-volume subwoofer with its superior quality driver unit and wooden housing delivers powerful, gutsy bass. Experience spectacular sound effects, such as bombs going off or shots being exchanged, in all their glory. The JUGGER 2.1 Subwoofer System won’t just get gamers’ hearts racing: besides the high-fidelity sound of action-packed gaming scenarios, it’s perfect for action movies and music. Simply connect the system to your PC, games console or TV, and use the practical desktop remote to connect an MP3 player, a microphone or a gaming headset.” – Speedlink product page.

As you can see from the specifications below, the Jugger 2.1 outputs 35 Watt RMS with a peak of 70 Watt, so they should be pretty loud for a desktop solution, plus combining that with a subwoofer for some added thump.

  • Active 2.1 speaker system
  • 35 Watt RMS output power, 70 Watt peak power*
  • powerful subwoofer with a wooden housing and high volume for extreme bass
  • satellite speakers angled for optimal audio projection and with metal grill protectors
  • separate practical volume and bass controls on the subwoofer
  • on/off switch and auto power-saving mode for zero power wastage
  • practical desktop remote with connectors for rapid switching between additional audio sources, a microphone or a set of headphones
  • impressive symphony of sound for games – perfect for multimedia use
  • easy installation
  • rubber feet for acoustic decoupling
  • audio adapter cable (1m) for connecting to a PS3, Xbox 360 or TV
  • dimensions: subwoofer: 190 × 210 × 210mm (W × D × H), satellites: 130 × 105 × 130mm (W × D × H) x 2

The speakers come really nicely packaged with a carry handle built into the box, making them very retail friendly. On the front of the box you’ll find that they’ve been listed as compatible with TV, PC, PS3 and Xbox 360, but of course they’ll be compatible with any device that has AUX ports or a 3.5mm connection.

In the box I found not one, but two quick install guides, handy. I also found a wired controller, AUX to 3.5mm cable and AUX pass through to female 3.5mm cable, pretty much everything you should need to hook his up to your PC, TV, Blu-ray player or similar audio enabled device.

Turn Your Audio System Into A Wi-Fi Enabled Set of Speakers With Rocki

The Rocki device, as an article from Endgadget (via Kickstarter) states, is said to be able to turn any audio system into a Wi-Fi enabled sound system that enables you to stream music from any device having a wireless streaming principle. The idea’s a pretty straightforward one: a module that plugs into the back of an existing sound system via audio jack or RCA, essentially turning it into a wireless speaker system.

The little hexagonal Play device streams music over your home network via 802.11b/g/n, which has some notable fidelity and range advantages over Bluetooth. Assuming you’ve already got some speakers lying around, it’s also a fair bit cheaper than investing in a new Bluetooth or WiFi versions.

Technical specifications of ROCKI PLAY:

  • WiFi 802.11b/g/n (AP / Hotspot mode supported)
  • Music Formats Supported : MP3, FLAC, WAV, AIFF
  • Music Streaming Services Supported : TBC pending licensing request with the respective music streaming services
  • ROCKI App versions : Android, iOS, HTML5 (for Windows Phone, PC & Mac)
  • Connectors : 3.5mm Stereo (Audio) / MicroUSB (Power/Charging)
  • Included : 3.5mm to 3.5mm Audio Cable, 3.5mm to RCA Audio Cable, USB Charging Cable, USB Charger
  • Battery : 900mAH
  • Dimensions: 92 x 54 x 17mm / 48g

Available Colors:

  • ROCKI Green
  • Paint It Black
  • Submarine Yellow
  • Hot Chilli Peppers Red
  • Pink Punk Pink
  • Deep Purple

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_H-K3-Uv0ZU[/youtube]

An android app is reportedly in the works for the Rocki, letting you stream your music to multiple devices, having the iOS and HTML5 taken into consideration as well. The device is pledged at $45 / €33 / £28 and buyers can get one of the first Rocki exclusive beta devices (limited availability), with beta app and firmware (app and firmware upgrades over the air). But if you want to go cheaper, you can also get it at a pledged price of $18 / €13 / £11 with a free t-shirt.

If you are interested in ordering one of these Rocki gadgets can have a look here for more information. Also, people who want to order one of these gadgets and is outside of the US should take note of the shipping price of $15 / €11 / £9 which applies to the actual pledged price.

Thank you Endgadget and Kickstarter for providing us with this information
Image and video courtesy of Kickstarter

Samsung Announces New Wireless Audio Multiroom Speaker System

Samsung announced on the 3rd of October the Samsung Shape Wireless Audio Multiroom speaker system (WAM750), the latest tech in terms of Samsung audio, enabling music lovers to enjoy tether-free entertainment in any room of the house, from various music sources. The flexible new speaker can be used alone or in combination with the Samsung Hub (WAM250) and additional M7 speakers to create a multi-room system.

“In today’s homes, consumers are engaging with a multitude of devices for entertainment, including Smart TVs and smartphones,” Jim Kiczek, Director of Digital Audio and Video at Samsung Electronics America, had to say about their new product. “The Samsung Shape M7 was designed to fit and work perfectly in the Samsung family of home entertainment products, offering simplicity, versatility and incredible sound, all accessed with a touch of a smartphone.”

The Samsung Shape Wireless Audio Multiroom speaker system is also easy to set-up with the plug-and-play feature. Simply connect the M7 or optional Samsung Hub to a router, plug-in, and download the free app to effortlessly control multiple speakers and audio sources from a smartphone. With the Samsung Hub (WAM250) consumers are able to connect additional M7 speakers in any room of their home while maintaining superior sound quality and eliminating the need to connect any of the speakers to a router. For one-to-one pairing of an M7 to a smartphone, Bluetooth with NFC functionality is also included.

Samsung’s Shape Wireless Audio Multiroom system, which includes one M7 speaker, will be available on October 13th at the retail price of $399.99 ( £250 ). The Samsung Hub will also be available on October 13th at a retail price of $49.99 ( £14 ). More about the Samsung’s Shape Wireless Audio Multiroom system can be found on Samsung’s official website.

Thank you TechPowerUp for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of Samsung.

Win One of Five Antec Mobile Product Bundles

With mobile and lifestyle products changing the market as we currently know it, a lot of brands are keen to produce products that cater for this area. With this in mind, we’ve teamed up with Antec and their Antec Mobile Products department to give away some amazing prizes. We have  five lots of fantastic prizes up for grabs in this awesome competition.

1st Prize: SP1 Portable Wireless Bluetooth Speaker + PowerUp 3000 Portable Charger

2nd Prize: SP1 Portable Wireless Bluetooth Speaker

 

3rd Prize: SP1 Portable Wireless Bluetooth Speaker

4th Prize: Gain Bluetooth Receiver + dBs In-Ear Headphones

5th Prize: iso Active Noise Canceling Wireless Bluetooth Headphones

To enter this competition, we have broken things down into four steps to make it easier than ever:

So that we get bigger and better competitions each time, why not also share this competition page on your own social media (Facebook, Twitter etc…)

Rules and regulations:

  • The competition is open WORLDWIDE!
  • The competition ends at midnight GMT on 13th May 2013 and winners will be notified within 7 days of the closing date
  • In the event of a dispute, eTeknix staff hold the final say and no discussions will be entered into
  • Delivery is not in the hands of eTeknix and can take some time to arrive
  • In the event that the prize is unavailable, eTeknix reserve the right to offer an alternative of equal or greater value
  • By entering this competition, you adhere to the above rules and regulations
  • Winner(s) will be announced on our competition winners page