This week marks a year since Jay Z and a lineup of big-name artists took over Tidal, touting a library of exclusive content and a lossless audio option. In the 12 months since Mr. Carter & Co. took control, the streaming service amassed 3 million subscribers, up from the first million the company announced last fall. There’s no doubt exclusive releases, especially Kayne West’s The Life of Pablo, gave those paid plans a boost, but Tidal still has a lot of work to do if it wants to catch Spotify and Apple Music.
If you’re been eyeing Google’s Chromecast Audio for your holiday shopping spree, Mountain View just added some new features to sweeten the deal. First, the $35 gadget now supports high-res audio with 96KHz/24 bit lossless playback. This means that if you have the proper audiophile-grade setup, you can expect to hear better than CD quality music coming through your speakers.
We’ve witnessed the home audio space undergo numerous technological advancements over the past century. The first real breakthrough came in 1877, when Thomas Edison created the mechanical recording machine known as the phonograph (a.k.a. the record player). Fast-forward to the modern era and the turntable is still treasured as a cult instrument utilized to entertain crowds in intimate settings.
Vinyl is on the rise these days, and so Technics is getting back into the the turntable game. The venerable brand showed off an aluminum prototype of a new model set to be released in 2016. Here’s what I know: I’m really excited.
Everyday speakers—whether they’re in a cellphone, TV, or radio—scatter sound waves as soon as they leave the cone. A single wave can bounce off dozens of surfaces, slamming into other signals and degrading along the way, before reaching your ear in a muddled mess. Adding to this audio chaos, most midrange TVs only emit sound from rear or downward-facing speakers. So turning them up just doesn’t help. Gamers and TV obsessives often turn to soundbars and directional speakers for relief, but even those don’t offer a true high-fidelity fix.
You can certainly use drum machines and electronic drums if you want to add a digital kick to your music, but you typically lose the intuitiveness and subtlety of playing old-school skins in the process. Why can’t you have the best of both worlds? Sunhouse thinks you can.
A couple months ago, SoundCloud opened its podcasting service up to everyone. There are limits to what you can do with a free account, but it’s a great way to dip a toe into the podcasting waters without spending any money, and you don’t necessarily need any in-depth technical knowledge.