1. For speaker DIYers: an inexpensive polarity checker from Woodworx. It comes with a LED indicating meter and a CD. Model WXPCD, $59. (336)855-5432.
2. Popular Electronics and Electronics Now (formerly Radio Electronics) have combined to become (what else?) Poptronics.
3. Home Entertainment 2000 (formerly the HiFi Show) will take place in Rye NY, May 11-l4. www.homeentertainment-expo.com
4. Elite has issued "An Evening with Sherlock Holmes" on DVD, including 4 Basil Rathbone movies and 15 hours of old radio broadcasts!
5. Lucasfilm, Sony and Panavision have collaborated on the first 24-frame progressive high definition digital camera system for movies.
6. Inexpensive backup for computers: Danmere's "Backer32" stores .5 to 3 Gbytes (depending on storage density) on VHS tape. Available as
an internal ISA card ($69) or ECP parallel-port device ($89) [Poptronics Feb2000]. Tel (877)847-2686.
7. Forbes, Aug 9, 1999, featured an article "Loudspeaker envy--Sidney Harman Would Be enjoying His 80's If Not for Amar Bose." It noted
Mr. Harman's admission to have met just about everyone in the loudspeaker industry except Amar Bose.
8. Dr. William M. Hartmann, a physicist at Michigan State University, has developed a new method of recording string instruments, using contact microphones.
Long used in the pop field, they have not found favor in classical recording because the instruments have a radiation pattern that is dependent on angle,
and the object is to recreate the sound of the instrument in acoustic space. He uses two contact mikes on each instrument in carefully chosen positions,
records the outputs on two channels, and reproduces the signals on a special speaker with sets of drivers on front and back. A string quartet requires
an 8 channel recorder, 8 channels of amplification, and 4 special speakers. He then plays the signal with the speakers in the position of the musicians,
with remarkable lifelike results. [I suppose it would allow the Kronos Quartet to play Yankee Stadium without acoustic feedback problems--DBH]. [NYT
Nov 16, 1999]