It's a little plain and slim on features, but the free Kindle app for Android does its job as an e-book reader. Once you fire it up, it lets you shop for new books or download books you've already bought through your account.
Since Kindle is about book sales, the app lets you buy e-books through Amazon's online Kindle Store, where works typically sell for about $10 a piece. A much-needed and hopefully cleaner-looking and quicker-operating in-app store is reportedly coming in future versions. If you're unready to commit to a book, you can wirelessly send … Read more
After updating to OS X 10.6.4, a number of people are experiencing an error where Apple's Mail email client will not open. When the application is launched, a message stating "Mail version 4.3 (1081/1078) cannot be used on Mac OS X Version 10.6.4" is displayed and the program shuts down.… Read more
A few people have commented that their speakers have stopped working after updating to OS X 10.6.4. Some people have had this happen for USB-audio devices like the Apple Pro speakers, and others have had the internal speakers stop working.… Read more
Apparently Apple included an older version of Adobe's Flash Player plugin with the latest Mac OS X 10.6.4 update. The version Apple supplies is 10.0.45.2, whereas the latest version from Adobe is 10.1.53.64. While most people will not experience much difference in terms of performance, there could be some stability or compatibility differences that a few people may notice. More importantly, the version included with OS 10.6.4 is one that is subject to some recently uncovered (and subsequently patched) security vulnerabilities.… Read more
I've been an audiophile for more than 30 years, and from where I stand there's never been a more exciting crop of high-end speakers to choose from. The goal--to make as lifelike a sounding speaker as possible--is exceedingly difficult, but that hasn't stopped a slew of very talented designers from trying. This top-10 list was created without price constraints and is presented in no particular order; the speakers are all exceptional performers (prices listed are for pairs of speakers). They are all currently available models, but I will soon do another top-10 list of the best speakers of the 1950s, '60s, '70s, and '80s.
I did the first "Top 10 greatest audiophile speakers" blog post last year, with a self-imposed price limit of $3,500 per pair (two were under $1,000). Most models are still available, so if you're looking for affordable options, please refer to that list. All of the companies on today's list offer less expensive models.
Hansen Audio Prince V2. This speaker's handsome curves and strong physical presence demands respect--it all but shouts "this is very serious audiophilia"--it's made for those rare souls who would appreciate a world-class speaker small enough to fit in an apartment, with floors strong enough to support the 540-pound weight of a pair of these $39,000 beauties. For my money it's better than Wilson Audio's highly regarded Watt/Puppy speaker.
Naim Ovator S-600. Britain's Naim Audio Ltd. is best known for its amplifiers and CD players, but this new speaker breaks a lot of rules and sounds less like a box speaker than anything on the planet. With super-tight bass, uninhibited dynamic punch, superlative midrange tone, and pure treble, the S-600 is a strong contender on a number of fronts. At $10,450 it's priced near the low-end for today's state-of-the-art speakers. Review to come.
Anthony Gallo Acoustics Reference 3.5. A radical update of the Gallo Reference 3.1, with new drivers; the small, 35-inch tall floor-standing speaker projects a huge soundstage. The cast aluminum and stainless steel design feels remarkably solid. Sonically, the Reference 3.5 has the ease and poise of a much larger and more expensive speaker. At $6,000 the Reference 3.5 is the most affordable speaker on this list and offers more than a glimpse of state-of-the-art audio. Sounds great with low-power amplifiers; review to come.
B & W 802 D. Another English contender, and this one's loaded with interesting design tricks, including a synthetic diamond tweeter. The form-follows-function design is drop-dead gorgeous. B & W's top models are favored by audiophiles and recording studios. $15,000.
Wilson Audio MAXX Series 3. More than any other company Wilson Audio dominates the upper-end speaker market. Its held that position for more than 25 years, and now with this 5-foot, 7-inch-tall, 425-pound bad boy, there's no sign that reign will end anytime soon. So sure, the MAXX 3 is brute-force powerful, capable of producing "live" sound volume, in the largest rooms or mansions. That said, the MAXX 3 also plays quiet music with beguiling refinement. It's what any demanding (and wealthy) audiophile would expect a $68,000 speaker to sound like. BTW, the MAXX 3 isn't Wilson's most expensive speaker, not by a long shot. … Read more
A number of people who use Apple's "Mail" email client have installed the WideMail plugin to give an alternate message layout with the message list and message body being side-by-side, which is more appealing for wide-screen displays. After updating to 10.6.4, some of these people have found a couple of problems associated with Mail. The first is that the plugin no longer seems to work, and secondly the Mail subject line is blank in the message browser.… Read more
Apple has released the much anticipated OS X 10.6.4 update. This update addresses a number of specific issues with the OS, including compatibility with Adobe CS3, SMB networking, VPN connections, and trackpad issues on MacBook systems.… Read more