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Barry Willis  |  Feb 13, 2000  |  0 comments
The best defense is sometimes a good offense. has taken that old advice to heart by counter-suing the Recording Industries Association of America for what it calls "unfair business practices." On Monday, February 7, filed a complaint against the music-industry organization in San Diego Superior Court, alleging that the RIAA and its president, Hilary Rosen, have conspired to undermine the Internet music company's stock price by promulgating information to stock analysts just prior to suing for copyright infringement.
Jon Iverson  |  Feb 13, 2000  |  0 comments
It's been a rough season for some in the e-commerce crowd, as several consumer-electronics Internet startups find themselves amid changes. Last week, announced that it will close the e-tailing sites and (created as a joint venture with Tops Appliance City, which is now under Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection) and sell these operations' remaining retail assets. At the same time, the company says it will launch an "Internet incubator" through the establishment of Grove Street Ventures to attract and develop startup Internet companies.
Jon Iverson  |  Feb 06, 2000  |  0 comments
Visitors to the website will find a headline on the home page: "Your Guide to MP3 and More." MP3 recordings, while a big hit with young music fans, have not been a favorite of the music business. The key to's financial future as a download site is likely whatever ends up falling under "and more."
Jon Iverson  |  Feb 06, 2000  |  0 comments
Last week, the Consumer Electronics Association reported that sales of audio products during November constituted the largest monthly increase since August 1994. Total revenues for the month reached $901 million, representing a 16% increase over last year's figure. The CEA adds that November's sales brought total year-to-date sales to $7.5 billion—2% ahead of the same period last year.
Barry Willis  |  Feb 06, 2000  |  0 comments
Blaming a falloff in CD sales on the popularity of CD burners, BMG Germany recently issued approximately 100,000 copy-protected discs in an attempt to thwart the problem—and had to take a substantial portion of them back because consumers said the discs wouldn't perform in car players and in some home audio systems.
Stereophile Staff  |  Feb 06, 2000  |  0 comments
Spring typically sees Stereophile release its coveted "Records To Die For" feature, wherein everybody working for the magazine gets to make like a music critic and add their two cents about what gets them excited (musically speaking). R2D4 2000 is on newsstands right now, in the February issue of Stereophile; to commemorate its publication, we add the 1999 "Records To Die For" to the online archives.
Barry Willis  |  Feb 06, 2000  |  0 comments
The inclusion of "hyperlinks" in music CDs that direct music lovers to Sony-affiliated online sales sites has angered the National Association of Recording Merchandisers, a trade organization representing more than 1000 music retailers. NARM has filed suit against Sony Music Entertainment and Sony Coporation of America, seeking an injunction against the use of hyperlinks and charging that the practice of including the links in CDs is a violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act. Asking retailers to sell discs with such embedded links is the "equivalent of asking Tower Records to put posters for rival Musicland in their stores," said NARM president Pamela Horovitz.
Stereophile Staff  |  Feb 01, 2000  |  0 comments
The Home Entertainment 2000 show, originally planned to be held in Rye, New York this spring, has been canceled. Show staff has received feedback from manufacturers and dealers, who feel that the rooms at the Rye venue are too small, and that a suburban location is not optimal. EmapUSA VP Jaqueline Augustine states that "We want to hold a successful show, and this venue could not guarantee our success."
Barry Willis  |  Jan 30, 2000  |  0 comments
There's not a lot of music in the bottom octave, and there's not a lot of information in the low bass of a movie soundtrack. But there is a lot of power down there in the rumbling subterranean region—power that adds palpable realism to every type of home entertainment. That's why we go to extremes in our search for low-frequency reinforcement: full-range loudspeakers, and multiple subwoofers, and digital room-correction systems.
Barry Willis  |  Jan 30, 2000  |  0 comments
Where Sony goes, the electronics industry follows. And Sony is going on the Internet—not merely with product information and links to dealers, but with sales direct to consumers. The announcement was made late in January by Sony Electronics president Teruaki Aoki. "We cannot neglect the customers' viewpoint," Aoki said, acknowledging that serving consumers is a higher priority for the electronics giant than protecting dealers.
Jon Iverson  |  Jan 30, 2000  |  0 comments
What began as a seemingly random collection of songs became a classic animated movie. Yellow Submarine was recently remastered and reissued on DVD and CD, and has now become the latest in a string of virtual-reality theme-park rides: Beatles fans visiting Berlin's Potsdamer Platz can travel through Pepperland at The Beatles' Yellow Submarine Adventure.
Barry Willis  |  Jan 30, 2000  |  0 comments
The FM radio spectrum could soon get a lot more crowded, thanks to rules recently adopted by the Federal Communications Commission. New stations with broadcasting power of between 1W and 100W will be cropping up soon in communities all over the country, provided they don't interfere with existing stations, and provided they remain strictly noncommercial.
Jon Iverson  |  Jan 30, 2000  |  0 comments
Last week, Command Audio announced $56 million in new funding from several media, technology, and venture capital companies for its audio-on-demand service. The company says that the new funding will help fuel the rollout of their entertainment and information service to major US markets in the coming year.
Stereophile Staff  |  Jan 30, 2000  |  0 comments
Getting a good connection to ground can make or break a fussy audio (and video) system. Jonathan Scull reveals several tips and tricks in "Fines Tunes" #9. As J-10 states: "Of course, the 'Fine Tunes' brief is low- or no-cost techniques for improving your system's sound. So let's consider that unruly beast called Ground. Aside from walking on, what's it good for?" The answer awaits.
Jon Iverson  |  Jan 23, 2000  |  0 comments
Last week, Tweeter Home Entertainment Group announced that it has reached an agreement in principle to acquire United Audio Centers, located in the Chicago, Illinois area. United Audio describes itself as a seven-store specialty consumer electronics retailer with annual sales of approximately $48 million, and says it has been in business in the Chicago market for over 40 years. The companies expect to complete the transaction on or about April 1, 2000, and note that the agreement in principle to acquire United Audio is subject to various terms and conditions, as well as to regulatory approval.