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A Good, Basic Office Chair for Working From Home

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KRK 8s V2 Subwoofer Review

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Yamaha MSP5 Studio Monitor Review

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NVIDIA Quadro K4200 Review

We've been doing an extended review of the Quadro K4200 and it's been rock solid. It's quiet, consumes reasonable power and helps accelerate apps that take advantage of the GPU. Since Q4 of 2014 we've been using the K4200 in one of our workstations primarily for digital content creation.

Our primary apps include the Adobe CC suite, Avid Media Composer, Sony Vegas Pro, Edius Pro and various plug-ins from Boris, NewBlue and others. The single slot Quadro K4200 sits right in the sweet spot of price/performance for these kinds of apps.

In a craft production environment, we really like the single slot design because our workstations are also used for audio mixing and mastering and we often require adjacent slots for audio and DSP cards or an SSD accelerator.  

When building a workstation for content creation, two of our main considerations are performance and compatibility. When we initially installed the K4200, Media Composer gave us a warning to revert back to an earlier driver. Of course, our other apps preferred the most recent driver. So it's always possible to encounter some hiccups like this. The good news, over time, after a couple of app and Quadro driver updates all the apps seem to be happy.   Media Composer likes version 340.84 currently.

We like the performance we're getting from the Quadro k4200.  However, we can't say it blew us away compared to the K4000.   The K4000 operated much cooler than it's predecessor while offering improved performance.   The Quadro K4200 offers improved specs and continues on that path but since we're not in Maya all day it's maybe not as noticeable to us.   It really depends on your apps.   So if you're happily chugging along with a k4000 in your editing suite you may want to stick with it.  However, if you're considering a new system or doing more 3D or using an app that really benefits from the increased specs and you're looking for a lot of power in a single slot design the Quadro k4200 should be at the top of your list.

In 2015 we expect to see a nice bump in overall performance with the latest Xeons, DDR4, dropping SSD prices, thunderbolt 2 and generally improved motherboard performance, not to mention Windows 10 might actually not suck.  We're still primarily running Windows 7. The next step is for the OS and content creation apps to truly take advantage of all the processing power provided by the CPU cores and the GPU power in cards such as the Quadro K4200.   4K video is a train in the distance that will run your over before you know it.    Nice to see NVIDIA keeping it real with the Quadro lineup.


Visit NVIDIA for more information and all the specs.

JBL EON206P Portable PA Review

The JBL EON206P portable PA system surprised us with how much sonic punch it packs into a lightweight package. This is a system anyone can easily move around and fire up with 160 watts of power for smallish gigs.

We tested the EON206P in an open office environment. We were easily able to generate enough volume to address 100 plus people. The folks in conference rooms on the perimeter commented that they could hear us just fine as well.

The EON206P is like a carry-on suitcase. The two ends snap apart to reveal the powered mixer. JBL includes cables for connecting to the speakers. When snapping everything back together, there is enough room to store cables inside the recessed cavity of the mixer. This makes for very easy setup and transportation.

The Mixer includes two mic / instrument inputs and a pair of inputs for stereo devices such as a keyboard/drum machine, MP3 player, smart phone, computer. The mic inputs include EQ and Reverb. We bumped up the highs a little when using the SM58. We found it very easy to dial in a quality sound and we were pleasantly surprised by the bass response despite not having a sub hooked up.

We have a couple of meetings coming up where we can really put the EON206P to the test and we’ll add to this review in a couple of weeks. But we wanted to kick it off because we were really impressed right out of the box with the sonic quality of this smallish all-in-one PA.

UPDATE:  After living with this system we're still happy with the purchase.   It's ideal for gatherings when we're playing music, happy hours and need to make some announcements...etc.   The company has grown and we're using a more sophisticated setup when we have multiple presenters and need a proper mixer.  However, this is still the go to unit for smaller gatherings.   

Visit JBL for all the specs and more information.

Panasonic AJ-PX270 Professional HD Camcorder Review



The PX270 is an amazing HD camera for ENG, corporate and documentary work. Over the years we’ve used the DVX100, HVX200, HPX250 and now the AJ-PX270 which is the next evolutionary step in Panasonic’s hand held family of cameras. This camera has very good dynamic range and the ability to achieve shallow depth of field. The AV-Ultra codecs are very robust and the microP2 cars make it very easy to dump footage into your NLE in the field using standard SD card readers. We really like this camera.

The AJ-PX270 is pretty much everything we’ve been asking for from this type of camera aside from 4k resolution. Panasonic has also been slow with the promised firmware upgrade to AVC-ULTRA 200. This higher bit rate will allow for even more robust capture of high speed action such as sports. Panasonic promised the firmware upgrade in 2014. We’re still waiting.

The first thing you notice about the PX270 is how light it is. You can truly operate this camera without a tripod with minimal fatigue. The HVX200 and even the HPX250 were more cumbersome in the field. Anyone still clinging to the HVX200 will be blown away by how easy it is to handle the PX270. The battery is now recessed inside the body of the camera which also makes for a better on-center feel. It also, makes it more comfortable to support the camera with you torso.

All is not sweetness and light however. We’re all for light weight designs but we’d like to see more ruggedized choices for some of the hinges, switches and buttons. We feel we could easily snap off the LCD display, the display buttons and the cheap plastic cover of the P2 slots.

The display and electronic view finder are very good on the PX270. There are a plethora of options for image and quality settings. The menu also has a fast option and a more complete option when you hold the button longer. This is something we had to discover after some frustration trying to dig into the menus.

The PX270 has much improved dynamic range and low light performance compared to the HPX250 and it’s a revelation if you are upgrading from an older camera like the HVX200. We were able to shoot with little to no gain scenes at dusk that would have been mostly noise with prior handheld cameras from Panasonic.

The PX270 is a really great HD camera. You can achieve a variety of looks that range from TV to film and decent shallow depth of field that makes solid choice for an HD handheld around $5k. We love the ergonomics of this camera and the image it captures and we’re comfortable with the P2 workflow. Over the years we’ve seen standard SD, CF cards and SSDs and HDDs all experience hiccups in the field. We’ve yet to have any problems with P2, either full size or micro. That confidence makes shooting with the PX270 feel even better.

UPDATE 2015 January 19:  Panasonic has finally released firmware update that includes the AVC-Intra200 Codec and 1080 30p, 25p and 24p.   You can download the latest firmware for the Panasonic PX270 here.    It's free and will not be a paid upgrade as originally planned.   



Visit Panasonic for more information about the AJ-PX270

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