On Gear Live: Top 10 Gear Live tech stories of 2015

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Philips Streamium WAK3300

With a sleek, sophisticated looking exterior the new Philips Streamium WAK3300 is an alarm clock with 802.11g wireless networking built in.  The wireless networking provides the connection to Philips’ Wireless Music System, which includes their WACS700 Media Center that was announced during CES 2005.  Using the WACS700 as a source, the WAK3300 can stream music for your listening pleasure, or merely provide variety for your morning wake-up call.  Unfortunately, it seems that this also precludes the use of any other media server as a source for the Streamium WAK3300.

Additional details are a bit scare and no pricing or availability is known at this time.


Read More | Philips via Pocket-lint


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Pyrrha

We’ve talked about the virtues of Pandora many times in the past so I won’t rehash old news, but wouldn’t it be great if you could record your Pandora streams and save them for later?  A utility called Pyrrha lets you do just that.  Yes, there are other utilities out there that let you “hijack” audio streams and record them for later use, but Pyrrha works a bit differently. 

There’s no need to go to Pandora’s website to login as Pyrrha handles all of that for you.  Enter your username and password, choose your radio station and recording duration, click the “generate” button, and away it goes, quietly recording your chosen station as a 128kbps MP3 complete with playlist.

With a Java version for non-Windows users available, it’s hard to fault an application that does so little, yet does it so well.  However, I like to nitpick so I’d like more control over the duration of the recordings, and a feature to remember my username and password.


Read More | Pyrrha via eirikso


Clearaudio Statement

Audiophiles are a strange lot.  Where else can you find a group of reasonably intelligent people who will believe almost any preposterous concept, provided it relates to improving their perception of high-end audio?  Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of audiophiles who are quite rational when it comes to audio equipment, but there are many others who take a flying leap from the cliff of intelligence when presented with an extravagent piece of audio gear.  The latest word in excess comes from the German company Clearaudio who have crafted a turntable they call the Statement. 

The aptly named Statement is a $125,000 conglomeration of wood, aluminum, and other sundry bits that aims to do only one thing - play records, and play them exceptionally well.  Weighing in at a massive 770-pounds, the Statement derives its rotational motivation from the same type of electric motor used to propel the Mars Rover.  So what we end up with is a turntable that is built to enormous excess, is supremely precise and stable, and plays vinyl so well that the average listener probably couldn’t distinguish it from a good quality CD player.  Then again, the average listener isn’t the intended recipient of this German engineered tribute to overkill.  No, that privileged spot would be reserved for . . . you guessed it, the audiophile.


Read More | Clearaudio (de) via Engadget


In this episode, we catch up with Ken Castle of SanDisk, and he gives us a rundown of all of the features of the new Sansa e260. If you are looking for something that will provide you a lot more features than the iPod nano - at a cheaper price - the Sansa e260 looks to be it. Ken tells us why you should own one. Look for our review in a future episode.


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Bose SoundDock

Bose has recently updated their SoundDock iPod accessory, finally making the product available in black to go along with the new 5th generation iPods with video. Some say that the SoundDock produces better sound than the iPod HiFi while remaining $50 cheaper than the official Apple product. You can pick up a Bose SoundDock in either black or white for $299 USD.


Read More | SoundDock Product Page


RIAAThe RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America) is at it again, but this time, instead of suing consumers, they’re waging war against XM Radio.  The lawsuit centers on the XM Inno, a portable satellite receiver with the ability to record songs.  The RIAA is seeking $150,000 in damages for each song that XM users record on their devices.  This of course is in addition to the royalty fees that XM already pays out for the “privilege” of broadcasting music.

Sirius Satellite Radio is being excluded from the lawsuit, even though their S50 device offers similar features, because they reached an agreement with the RIAA last month.  In other words, Sirius already bowed to the RIAA’s demands and coughed up whatever additional fees they were demanding.

David Butler, from XM Radio, said, “The music labels are trying to stifle innovation, limit consumer choice, and roll back consumers’ rights to record content for their personal use.”  So, what David is saying is that everything is pretty much status quo.


Read More | Top Tech News


Pandora MCE Plugin

We’ve talked about Pandora before, a music service which recommends new music for you based upon your favorite artists.  A plugin has surfaced to merge the power of Pandora with Microsoft’s Media Center 2005, and while the installation process isn’t idiot-proof, it’s still easy enough for all but the most computer illiterate among us. 

Since “simple” is often times the best, the plugin sticks to that ideal with usage that couldn’t be easier.  Browse through your collection of artists to find one you like, stab the “info” button on your remote, and choose “More…” to let Pandora do its thing.  The only downsides so far seem to be a formatting issue (since Flash-based Pandora was never intended for the “big screen”), and some minor performance issues with the author’s website (the plugin runs a web application on said site).  To help ease the first a tad, and eliminate the second, a refined plugin has been created that runs off of a mirror site.  The links to both versions of the plugin can be found below.


Read More | Colin’s Blog via eirikso
Read More | Refined Pandora MCE Plugin


Gear Live Bleeding EdgeIn this show we review the iTrip Auto, go over Boot Camp, detroy technology, and more:

THE WIRE
PowerMax DA4000 MR Mobile Repeater
Apple’s Boot Camp
Ultimate iPod Case

GIZMATIC
iTrip Auto Review
Walit Review

INTERVIEW
Phil Bogle, Jobster

BREAKIN’ STUFF
Audiovox 2-Way Radio
U.S. Robotics Fax Modem

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Gear Live Podcast SurveyIMPORTANT: We are surveying the viewers of our show to see what it is that people like, and more importantly, what they don’t like. It is anonymous, and just takes a couple of minutes. If you have the time, we would appreciate it! As always, feel free to let us know what you think in the comments.

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Gear Live Bleeding EdgeThis week we talk with Sonos, show off Nyko’s Xbox 360 Faceplate Maker, announce our second Xbox 360 giveaway, and more:

THE WIRE
YouTube’s 10-minute Upload Cap
iPod Volume Limit Update
Sony Style Seattle Grand Opening

HIGH SCORE
Nyko Xbox 360 Faceplate Maker

SOFTWARE
MoRU Review

GIZMATIC
Sonos Interview

GIVEAWAYS
Make My Day DVD Winners Announced
Another Xbox 360 Giveaway: Yes - another one!

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Length: 33:34


Gear Live Podcast SurveyIMPORTANT: We are surveying the viewers of our show to see what it is that people like, and more importantly, what they don’t like. It is anonymous, and just takes a couple of minutes. If you have the time, we would appreciate it! As always, feel free to let us know what you think in the comments.

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Google is preparing to launch a music download service, according to research firm Caris & Company.  It is rumored that Google has been meeting with leading music executives for “networking opportunities.”  The new site is expected to gain support from the music industry, as iTunes does not offer flexible pricing or a subscription service.  Rumors were also confirmed at a recent analyst meeting where Google highlighted plans to expand into downloadable media.


Read More | Forbes


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