We've covered some interesting customized-art endeavors on Crave before, like that company called DNA 11 that specializes in turning your genetic code or fingerprint into an aesthetic masterpiece. Here's another one: Apartment Therapy recently gave a nod to a studio that will take your photographs that you submit online, and turn them into works of art worthy of the classiest 21st-century aesthete. RRSK Studio, located in NYC's chic Meatpacking District, will take your Flickr faves and turn them into "pop portraits" or "fluid portraits." The studio can also paint a custom logo or … Read more
With the home becoming ever-more digital, we've seen a steady increase of instances where technologies converge with traditional furnishings. The early stages of this domestic evolution have often involved chairs and cabinets, but we may be on the cusp of a new phase with lamps. Yes, lamps.
At CES this week Soundolier showed off its "Duo," a combination speaker-lamp that can be purchased as a single fixture or as a pair for full stereo (and better lighting) for $280 each. Another $80 will get you the "Maestro," a wireless transmitter that pipes in music from … Read more
Pink bubbles and rubber ducks can get a little bit boring sometimes, even if they're unconventional rubber ducks. And not all of us can afford to install a Hydro-Massage Bathtub with a built-in TV. So how can you liven up the in-tub entertainment? Of course, the answer comes out of Japan. TokyoMango has written up these flashing bath balls that might just be able to elevate the common bath to an ethereal level. You fill these little guys with bath salts, put them in the tub, and they'll float and release the nice-smelling salts while flashing their lights. … Read more
The Sherwood Newcastle R-972 will deliver HDMI 1.3 connectivity, six HDMI inputs, lossless audio decoding (Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio), and a graphic onscreen user interface when it's released in August for $1,500. (Note that the back panel image shows four HDMI inputs, but Sherwood has pledged that the shipping model will include six.) The product becomes the first officially announced receiver we've seen that incorporates all of those bleeding-edge features. Its step-down model, the R-872, offers similar HDMI and lossless decoding capabilities with "only" four HDMI inputs and a text-only onscreen interface, … Read more
Conventional wisdom says that a stereo or surround sound system is only as good as its speakers. That's why speaker designers often become celebrities in the world of high-end audio. One such celeb is Jim Thiel, who's been designing speakers for the company he co-founded for 30 years now. He calls his latest high-end creation the CS3.7 and it stands 45-inches tall, 12.5-inches wide, and 21-inches deep, looking more like a sleek piece of modern sculpture when compared to the bland boxes taking up space in Best Buy.
Mr. Thiel's gone to great lengths to … Read more
You may not have heard much about Eton, the sole licensee of Grundig for all of North America, but you may have seen some of its portable radio products in a Sharper Image catalog. The company had a well-priced and decent-performing iPod speaker last year, the Eton Sound 50, and at CES it was showing a couple of new products, including the Apple Hi-Fi-like Sound 200, which will come out in March for $250. Along with an iPod dock on top of the speaker, there's also a USB port for playing back tunes from a USB thumbdrive and … Read more
You know, we track some wacky trends here on Crave. There are the Color-Changey Things, and the Stupid USB Devices, and of course Anthropomorphic Audio. And recently I've been spotting another one: things shaped like UFOs. There's that bug-killing gadget that flies, and a cute little saucer to manage hands-free electronic activity in cars. The latest in this emerging trend is the Neues Licht UFO Light, a German lighting concept that is shaped like something that might have appeared in an episode of Mystery Science Theater 3000.
The Neues Licht UFO is made mostly out of glass fibers, … Read more
Add Eton to the growing list of manufacturers such as iHome and DLO adding iPod to a clock radio so that you can wake up to your own music. But the company has gone one step further and added Sirius satellite radio connectivity to its new Sound 101 AM/FM clock radio. Unfortunately, the iPod doesn't dock on the Sound 101 (April, $150), but jacks in via a separate charging dock, which could be an ungainly arrangement on a small night table. You also have to add your own Sirius receiver.
A second Eton expandable alarm clock, the Sound … Read more
When people think of the high end speaker maker Thiel, affordable isn't the first word that comes to mind (though quality certainly is). But, they're working to change that (the affordable part). For the first time in the company's history, they've introduced a box speaker (i.e. not an in-wall) for under $1,000, the new Coherent Source SCS4 LCR two-way bookshelf speaker. Thiel mounts the two drivers in a coaxial design, which means that its 1-inch metal dome tweeter is mounted in the middle the 6.5-inch woofer. If you didn't know better, you … Read more
Speaker wires and A/V cables are the bane of any home theater system. In recent years, most mainstream manufacturers have offered one of two options to cut the number of wires: produce virtual surround systems that offer only one or two speakers (plus a subwoofer); or utilize a wireless rear speaker module that eliminates the need to run speaker cables the length of the room (but still necessitates quite a few cables of its own). But true wireless A/V systems have remained elusive.
Enter Neosonik. The start-up hi-fi company is using CES to highlight its home theater technology … Read more