Johnny Ramone: 19548–2004: Rock fans were saddened by the September 16 death of guitarist Johnny Ramone, founding member of pioneering punk rock band The Ramones. Surrounded by friends and family, he passed away at his Los Angeles home after losing a five-year struggle with prostate cancer. His death came just a few days after a concert held to celebrate the band's 30th anniversary and to raise funds for cancer research.
Two-channel lives: Once the bread-and-butter of electronics retailers everywhere, the two-channel receiver has become all but extinct. Rotel America is making a valiant effort to save this endangered species with its new RX-1052, a remote-controllable 100Wpc unit claimed to offer "audiophile-grade sonics"—it includes a phono preamp, and a "massively overbuilt" power supply—with versatile four-area multiroom/multizone capabilities and basic video-switching features. Whole-house system integration is made easier via three IR links and 12V trigger outputs. An RS-232 interface connects to touchscreens and other media controllers, and provides an upgrade path for the unit's firmware. Available with either matte black or black-and-silver front panels, the RX-1052 goes on sale in October at a suggested price of $899.
Ashland, OR cable maker, TARA Labs, was raided by a combined force of federal agents and local police, acting on a warrant issued after investigators found sufficient evidence that the company may have mislabeled some of its products as "Made in USA."
The entertainment industry is pondering its next move in the wake of a legal setback delivered Thursday, August 19. On that day, a Federal appeals court in San Francisco upheld a ruling by a lower court in Los Angeles that file-sharing software made by Grokster Ltd. and StreamCast Networks, Inc. does not violate US copyright law. The three-judge panel voted unanimously in favor of the defendants.
We've been hearing about it for years, but high-definition radio may finally be on its way. Feeling competitive pressure from satellite operations XM Radio and Sirius Satellite Radio, US broadcasters are making what appear to be sincere efforts to upgrade their service by moving from analog to digital.
Now there are four. The music industry's "Big Five" record labels officially became the "Big Four" on Thursday, August 5, as Sony Music Entertainment and Bertelsmann Music Group (BMG) finalized a merger months in the making. The partners are the music divisions of Sony Corporation and German media conglomerate Bertelsmann AG, respectively.