Most of the headphones I've tested over the years weren't designed to have a neutral balance of bass, midrange, and treble frequencies. Manufacturers are well aware that most people like bass, and that buyers tend to favor one headphone over another based on how much bass it produces. I think that's obvious, but a recent study cited in Brent Butterworth's blog countered that assumption. "The Relationship between Perception and Measurement of Headphone Sound Quality," a paper by Sean Olive and Todd Welti presented at last October's Audio Engineering Society convention found that a … Read more
- Leaked from today's 404 episode:
- Cook reportedly discussed music-streaming service with Beats.
- Snoop Lion reverts to canine type in video game "Way of the Dogg."
- W controller for "Wu-Tang: Shaolin Style" ain't nothing to futz with.
- Guy with Netflix tattoo gets a free year of Netflix.
- Andrew WK is now the spokesperson for Playtex Fresh + Sexy wipes.
DANA POINT, Calif.--Jimmy Iovine has worked as a producer with everyone from Bruce Springsteen to Lady Gaga over his 40-year career, and is currently chairman of Interscope Geffen-A&M. As a second, or companion, act he cofounded the popular Beats by Dr. Dre headphone company in 2006 because he thought the iPod earbuds were terrible.
"If Beats did anything, it got kids interested in audio again. We turned an entire generation on to sound," Iovine said in conversation with Walt Mossberg at the AllThingsD Dive Into Media conference here.
But his third act is even bolder … Read more
HTC's rumored M7 smartphone will usher in cutting-edge audio and photography features, if recent clues are an accurate indicator. A close look at an official HTC infographic teases a "new sound and camera experience" and provides hints of what to expect.
While the last line of the infographic might be the most fun to read, it is the lead-up that tells us where HTC is focused. HTC makes a point of saying that Apple did not change the image sensor size for the iPhone 4S in 2011.
What's more, the handset maker opines that it doesn'… Read more
With most speakers or headphones, you're stuck with the designer's sound, but with the Logitech UE Personal Reference Monitors (PRM) you get to play headphone designer and dial in exactly the sound you want.
Each pair is totally unique; they're built with the individually designed equalization curves you selected. My PRMs sound absolutely amazing, but I'm a little biased, I designed them to please my ears! Every PRM buyer will do the same, and if they totally screw up and hate the result, Ultimate Ears will give them another try. Each PRM set is handmade in UE's facilities in California.
The price for this level of customization doesn't come cheap, though; the Personal Reference Monitors sell for $1,999. That's extreme, but so are $285,000 luxury cars. I cover the full gamut of audio, from affordable to the craziest expensive gear. … Read more
Leaked from today's 404 episode:
- Anthropologist says Apple is definitely a religion.
- Google brings Street View to the Grand Canyon.
- Apple now owns the trademark to The Beatles' Apple Corps Logo.
- What I learned while live-tweeting a friend's funeral.
Video voice mail: Mossimo has a positive update on a previous video voice mail.… Read more
We're in a golden age for robots. They've gotten to the point where they can do amazing and impressive things, but they're not so advanced as to take over the world and enslave humankind just yet. Until that day comes, we can enjoy the antics of a biped robot walking a tightrope.
Created by a mysterious Dr. Guero, the robot easily proves its superiority to humans by patiently strolling along a tightrope like it's no big deal. It accomplishes this feat on video despite the presence of a pumping techno soundtrack.… Read more
Industrial designer Kotaro Shimogori has taken to crowdfunding site Indiegogo to raise funds for a Bluetooth-powered appliance that functions as a physical extension of your smartphone's notifications bar. But if you lived through the 1990s with me, you probably recognize Dr. Blinky for what it really is -- the resurrection of the pager with a 21st century spin.
In a nutshell, Dr. Blinky connects to an app on your Android phone (the iOS app is in progress) that you can configure to blink whenever you want to be notified of a new call, text, e-mail, or whatever. Dr. Blinky can also be set to blink in different patterns for different types of notifications. … Read more
I met Julie Glick a few months ago with some folks from Ultimate Ears at a Head-Fi meeting in NY. UE was promoting a new set of custom-molded in-ear headphones, the Personal Reference Monitors, which are just now entering full production. In her NYC office, Glick can fully demonstrate these unique headphones, which are not only custom-molded to your ears but fine-tuned, soundwise, to your liking. Ultimate Ears technicians use the frequency curve you create to build your Personal Reference Monitors. I crafted my EQ curve in Glick's office; it was a lot of fun to design my sound. … Read more
Leaked from today's 404 episode:
- Who inherits your iTunes library? Why your digimedia may go to the grave.