Best Gear of April 2019

Best Gear of April 2019

When it comes to AV gear worthy of Sound & Vision’s prestigious Top Pick designation, April turned in a 4K projector videophiles will drool over, an impressive home theater speaker system from a venerable brand that can be had for less than two grand, another super subwoofer from SVS, and our latest Top Value Pick — a set of powered Bluetooth speakers that delivers shockingly good sound for $200.

PSB Alpha T20 Speaker System: $1,800 (as reviewed)

Speakers
Performance
Build Quality
Value

Subwoofer
Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value

Unlike most AV categories, it’s not uncommon for good sounding speakers to remain in a company’s lineup for years. Case in point is PSB’s entry-level Alpha Series, which has been around since 1991 and is still going strong. Now in its third generation, the Alpha suite of speakers reviewed here in a 5.1 configuration won’t win any awards for style but delivers a four-star subwoofer and impressive sound — whether you’re listening to music or watching a movie. As reviewer Michael Trei put it, “The new Alphas are not the flashiest, biggest, or loudest speakers around, but they have a neutral sound and do pretty much everything well at a down-to-earth price.”

AT A GLANCE

Plus

Neutral balance
Close timbral matching between models
Excellent value

Minus

Pedestrian styling
Basic finish options

Full Review Here


JVC DLA-NX9 D-ILA Projector: $18,000

Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value

JVC’s second-generation native 4K projector has a lot going for it. It sets a tall bar for high dynamic range (HDR) performance — one that will leave videophiles drooling — and is the first projector to feature the brand’s 8K e-shift technology for near-8K image quality. Add to that JVC’s third-generation 4K D-ILA imager, industry leading contrast, reference-quality optics, auto tone mapping for consistent HDR performance, and exceptional installation flexibility with features like pixel convergence adjustment and 10 memory presets — a boon if you use multiple screens. Veteran video reviewer Tom Norton called the NX9 “one of the best home theater projectors I’ve tested.”

AT A GLANCE

Plus

Fantastic HDR performance
Reference-level optics
Industry leading contrast

Minus

Some dynamic contrast-related artifacts
Noticeable fan noise in High lamp mode

Full Review Here

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