John Sciacca Writes...

Features, Reviews and a Blog by John Sciacca

Random Thoughts (Blog)

The customer's always right. Even when he's crazy

Posted on April 11, 2010 at 5:04 PM Comments comments (1)

When you combine equal parts passion, obsession and insanity you get a customer of ours whom I’ll call Mr. Cooper. (In turn, he calls me "Mr. John.") Now, Mr. Cooper has been an incredibly loyal customer, returning to purchase items on a regular basis since he first found our store in 2006. He is also the only customer of mine whom I routinely try and talk out of making purchases, because, frankly, I often feel *bad* about selling him things.


You see, Cooper is com...

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The Masters: In HD with 3D Special Sauce

Posted on April 10, 2010 at 1:53 PM Comments comments (2)

When I first heard about this year's Masters golf tournament being broadcast in 3D I was skeptical. OK, I was ugly. I *suggested* that Augusta was jumping the shark. This is the most hallowed events in all of golf, and it does not need a gimmick to make it any more anything. (Actually, it already has a rather large "gimmick" in the form of Tiger fresh back from sex-hab and making an unbelievable run at his 5th Green jacket!)


Then the tournament started, ...

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May your ugliness be beautiful

Posted on April 9, 2010 at 2:22 PM Comments comments (1)

Received an e-mail from PR buddy, Micah Sheveloff, this morning that I felt I'd pass along. In exchange for exposing and sharing the nightmare, shame and personal humiliation which is the wiring behind your TV, ZVOX will reward someone with a new home theater system.

To enter the “Ugly TV Contest,” simply send a photo of your system's rat's nest and you could be rolling in style with a ZVOX 550 system requiring only a single wire.  A sample photo and the hor...

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How golf made me a better man

Posted on April 8, 2010 at 3:00 PM Comments comments (4)

With The Masters commencing this week – the one sporting event I *truly* look forward to watching each year – my mind is on golf. (Sorry to disappoint everyone, but – 3D!!!  – that will be the only time I’ll mention *that* in this post.)


As many of you know, prior to my current career as audio/video custom installer and journalist, I was a golf professional. I worked at a private club in Orinda, California (a small city on t...

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Kaleidescape, I love you, but... (UPDATED!)

Posted on April 7, 2010 at 11:52 AM Comments comments (1)

Today saw the end of two technology greats, Escient and Snell. And, as much as I love Kaleidescape – and don’t get me wrong, I *love* Kaleidescape – I fear that they may be the next casualty. And, frankly, this makes me sad.


As a reviewer, I’ve been fortunate enough to evaluate the Kaleidescape movie/music server system on multiple occasions. When it first came out in 2004, then again when Kaleidescape added music in 2006, then when they stepped up t...

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Escient: RIP! iPod DID kill you

Posted on April 7, 2010 at 10:14 AM Comments comments (0)

This morning I received confirmation of what I suspected a month ago (my original post follows this...): Escient is dead. (Something I didn't foresee was the simultaneous death of speaker legend, Snell, as well.) In an e-mail from D&M Holdings announcing their end of year 2009 fiscal statements and looking forward 2010 strategic focus they wrote the following:

Regarding the Consumer business, going forward, we will be focusing on our core consumer brands—Denon...

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The Force is Strong with Star Wars in Concert

Posted on April 6, 2010 at 12:42 PM Comments comments (1)

I received an updated e-mail from the good folks at Star Wars over the weekend saying that they have added a slew of new dates and venues for the terrific Star Wars in Concert presentation. (Upcoming dates and venues can befound here: I *highly* recommend checking this out if it is coming even remotely near you. Below is a post that I wrote for EDG several months ago after Dana and I went to the show.You can check ou...

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iCame. iSaw. iLoved. iPad.

Posted on April 5, 2010 at 2:52 PM Comments comments (3)

Unless you’ve been living in a technology-free bunker well under ground or just emerged from an extended coma – and if so, welcome! Glad you stopped by! Now drink some orange juice! – you know that this weekend witnessed the release of “the next big thing.” That big thing, of course, is Apple’s new tablet computer, the iPad.

Now, I am no stranger to technology. My house is often bulging with the latest gadgets and gizmos waiting to be rev...

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Stop! Sign!

Posted on April 2, 2010 at 7:11 PM Comments comments (2)

Just made it home from work and you want to know what is totally NOT cool? Getting pulled over for rolling through a totally unnecessary and useless stop sign in your private, gated community.

Want to know what totally IS cool? Catching a glimpse of the cop out of the corner of your eye and slamming on the brakes at the very last possible second, abruptly coming to a fully legal, ticket-avoiding stop. And then sitting there for a three count while Missy Misdeme...

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All signs point towards Good!

Posted on April 1, 2010 at 11:35 AM Comments comments (0)

Sometimes you can just tell that it’s gonna be a good day (whether or not you need to grab your AK as Mr. Cube so eloquently put it years ago...).  Today has all the makings of being a good – dare I say “great”? – one.  Started offwith seeing that my site has a new member, someone who I didn’t directly invite or personally know. (Welcome, Mark!  Good to have you!)


Then I opened a brand new bag of espresso beans and mad...

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