Late last year, B&O Play announced the Beoplay M3, an addition to its home wireless speaker lineup that’s more approachable in both size and price compared to the Beoplay M5. In fact, the $299.95 M3 is the least expensive home speaker in B&O Play’s portfolio, and appears to be specifically targeted to the person looking at a Sonos system for their home. I was intrigued: could this be the long-awaited Sonos alternative? My go-to recommendation for a wireless home speaker over the past couple of years has been Sonos’ excellent Play:1, and later, its replacement, the new Sonos One. The Sonos products combine an accessible price with great sound quality, rock solid wireless performance, and compatibility with virtually any streaming music service you might use. They also grant you entry into the Sonos platform, which easily handles expansion across multiple rooms and larger speakers. There have been other options in this space, but none have quite been able to … [Read more...] about B&O Play Beoplay M3 review: Sonos contender or just a pretender?
Headphone zone review
Refinements that make for a fantastic upgrade By Chris Welch on October 13, 2016 11:00 am @chriswelch 37 Fujifilm’s X-T2 is the perfect mirrorless camera for photo geeks. It seems like that’s true of every camera that Fujifilm releases, but the X-T2 is a refined sequel to the X-T1 that improves on its predecessor in the ways that matter most: resolution, autofocus, and ease of use. It’s still got all the manual control dials and stunning electronic viewfinder that lured photographers to the X-T1. At $1,599 (or $1,899 with a bundled 18-55mm lens), it’s actually more expensive than the X-T1’s original starting price. But as soon as it’s actually in stock somewhere again, I’ll be getting one. After weeks of trying out the X-T2, I’ve come to trust it like few cameras I’ve used previously — even counting full-frame DSLRs. There are still scenarios where $3,000 Canon and Nikon cameras can handily best Fujifilm, but the … [Read more...] about Fujifilm X-T2 review: for the love of photography
I’ve been using the Surface Pro ever since it came out, but as much as I want to I’ve never been able to use it as my laptop replacement. It’s powerful and impressive, but it’s just too limited as a laptop, and too chunky as a tablet. I use tablets for long periods of the day, and I regularly work on my lap with a real keyboard, so a hybrid laptop and tablet sounds like a perfect solution. The Surface Pro wasn’t it. The battery doesn’t last long enough for tablet use, and it’s not comfortable to use as a laptop in my lap. Nine months after introducing the first device, Microsoft is back — it knows my problems, and says it’s solved them. The Surface Pro 2 promises 75 percent more battery life, improved lap use, faster performance, and more, smarter accessories. Microsoft's second refreshed attempt to blend beauty and power into the perfect Windows 8 machine sets you back $899. That’s a small price to pay — if this is the … [Read more...] about Microsoft Surface Pro 2 review
Without fail, every person who has picked up the Pixel 2 XL has said virtually the same thing: "It feels like it's made out of plastic." I said it myself when I first held it. Of course, neither the Pixel 2 nor the Pixel 2 XL are made out of plastic. They're made out of Gorilla Glass and aluminum, just like every other high-end phone these days. But Google coated all that aluminum with a textured finish that hides most of the antenna lines and also makes the phones easier to grip. Google took what could have been a visually impressive design and covered it up in the name of ergonomics. It literally made a metal phone feel like a plastic one. It chose function over form. At nearly every turn, with both the hardware and the software, Google made that design decision again and again. There have been a few times when I wish the company had risked a little more razzamatazz, but mostly I've been appreciating the focus on improving the basics. "It's not just what it looks like and feels … [Read more...] about Google Pixel 2 review: plainly great
Trade-offs. Every purchase of consumer tech is defined by the choices we make about what we value more. In the world of over-ear headphones, the question has up until now been a three-way tug-of-war between the contradictory desires for wireless and noise-canceling tech, lightweight and compact design, and the best possible sound quality. Up until now. The wireless Bowers & Wilkins PX are the first pair of noise-canceling headphones from the well-respected British audio brand. They cost $400 in the US, come in a choice of demure space grey or a more flamboyant soft gold, and they sound phenomenal. I have had a PX pair since their launch in London two weeks ago, and they’ve quickly become as essential to my life as my wallet, keys, and phone. I don’t leave the house without them. A year ago, I reviewed the Bowers & Wilkins P7 Wireless, and I opined that they were bass-rich headphones that sounded and felt at their best when used on the move rather than while sitting … [Read more...] about Bowers & Wilkins PX review: wireless noise-canceling nirvana