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A Better Voice Control Speaker: Save On Sonos At Classic Stereo

Better Voice Control Speaker - save on Sonos at Classic Stereo

Many Classic Stereo customers like to buy Sonos products this time of year. Customers especially like Sonos One speakers as Christmas presents because they provide a better voice control speaker experience.

  • They are easy to set up.
  • They are easy to connect to each other, your phone, your tablet, your TV and more.
  • You can voice control them with Amazon Alexa built-in.
  • Some say it sounds better than a regular Alexa speaker.
  • Plus, you can stream from more than 50 music services.

luckily, sonos is on sale in december

Now, you can save up to $100 on Sonos. This limited time offer runs through Saturday December 22.

  • Save $20 on a single Sonos One speaker.
  • Save $50 on a pair of Sonos One speakers.
  • Save $100 on a Sonos Connect Amp.

test a better voice control speaker – try a sonos one in our showroom

Classic Stereo Showroom

Pro Audio In Your Home – Bowers & Wilkins

High-performance audio in the home

Remember when we jumped from Standard Definition to High Definition Television? Has anyone now seen native 4K video on a 4K TV? Almost everyone knows about the drastic improvements in video, however, a generation that grew up listening to music in ear buds has no idea how much they are missing in the world of high-performance audio. The same goes for people who shop for speakers at a big box store, or who have not upgraded their speakers in years.

We have seen some powerful reactions when those people visit the Classic Stereo showroom to hear the best brands in audio. One of the best examples is Bowers and Wilkins.

BOWERS AND WILKINS – USED BY THE PROS

The Bowers and Wilkins speakers in our showroom are the same speakers used in Abbey Road Studios and Skywalker Sound. That means the people who produce music for popular artists like Ed Sheeran and Adele use the same speakers as a reference. Skywalker Sound uses the speakers to produce audio for blockbuster movies like Incredibles 2 and Black Panther.

While top industry professionals use Bowers and Wilkins for reference speakers, the company designed them for your home.

High-Performance Audio - Bowers and Wilkins

HEAR HIGH-PERFORMANCE AUDIO IN OUR SHOWROOM

Hear the difference for yourself. Bring in your favorite song to hear how it sounds with high-performance audio. Customers have brought in songs they’ve enjoyed their entire life and leave blown away by the sound. They say they did not realize how much detail they missed.

Classic Stereo Showroom

Classic Stereo System Fix: Upgrading Technology

CE Pro honor in home education Home Automation

We had a customer recently stop by our showroom who needed a video and stereo system fix. They have a system that Classic Stereo installed about 20 years ago. The home has changed owners twice since then. The last homeowner didn’t use the system, so the new homeowner needs help figuring out how to get it working again.

THE STEREO SYSTEM FIX

Classic Stereo System Fix

The home has wiring to speakers in every room. However, they were controlled by a keypad in the wall that could operate the tuner or the CD player, and control the volume up and down, even let you pick your zone.

Not many people use those anymore.

Electronics Professional John Higgs offered a solution that allowed them to run their stereo system through a tablet.

“The infrastructure was there, ” Higgs said. “We just needed to update the technology.”

The homeowner was thrilled with the solution.

“They didn’t even know what they had available to them,” Higgs said. “Now they are asking about what else is possible. Can we put speakers in the sun room? Can we put speakers out by the pool?”

The answer is, “Yes we can!”

Classic Stereo can easily upgrade the speakers too.

WHAT’S NOT WORKING IN YOUR SYSTEM?

It’s a common conversation in our showroom. If you have any electronics or systems that are not performing the way you want, give us a call or stop by our showroom.  We enjoy offering solutions.

We can also let you know what has improved since your last purchase. You may not even know what you’re missing.

Classic Stereo Showroom

AUDIO EXPERTS: LESSON AT DISCOVERY ELEMENTARY

Audio Experts - Teaching loudspeakers

A handwritten letter can still be a powerful tool. Our audio experts at Classic Stereo recently received a handwritten note from a fifth grade student at Discovery Elementary School in Kentwood.

The students each pick a topic that interests them, then they find an expert in the field to answer questions and be their mentor in the subject.

We were flattered when one of the students asked us to be a mentor.

We sent our newest Electronics Professional, Craig Rybarczyk, to give a presentation to Mrs. Tidd’s entire class.

LETTER FOR THE AUDIO EXPERTS

Craig was impressed with the letter we received.

“I thought that it was absolutely awesome that a Fifth Grade student was so inquisitive as to how speakers work, and that she would seek out the professionals at Classic Stereo to see where loudspeaker technology currently is, and where its heading,” Craig said.

Here are just a few excerpts from the note we received:

Handwritten letter for the audio experts

“As experts in the fields of loudspeakers I am confident that the people of Classic Stereo will be able to assist me in my research and product development. I am responsible for knowing what innovations have had the greatest impacts on loud speakers and what current innovations are currently impacting the topic.”

Handwritten letter for the audio experts

“I am particularly interested in loudspeaker sound, something I’ve read a lot about in my research. I would like to understand the advancements in this area better and highlight them in my work.”

Handwritten letter for the audio experts

“I am very excited to become more of an expert on loudspeakers. I have been reading about the utility daily…”

MEET OUR NEWEST AUDIO EXPERT CRAIG RYBARCZYK

Craig recently met with the student one-on-one during the school day to answer specific questions. Then Craig met with Mrs. Tidd’s entire class to talk more about the science of loudspeakers.

“The class had wonderful questions, and they even knew many of the technical terms I used,” Craig said. “It is exciting to see such young kids be so interested in the technology around speaker design, and the bright future of this industry.”

Audio Experts - Teaching loudspeakers
Audio Experts - Teaching loudspeakers

VISIT ANY OF OUR AUDIO EXPERTS

You don’t need to write a letter to ask our Audio Experts any questions. Visit our showroom or give us a call.

Classic Stereo Showroom

Best Subwoofer: Listen for these five features

Gary Yacoubian - SVS - Best Subwoofer

Anybody looking for the best subwoofer would be wise to read our special guest post. It contains advice from Gary Yacoubian, the CEO of SVS. Their subwoofers are a recent addition to the Classic Stereo showroom.

Gary has served on the Executive Board of the Consumer Technology Association (CTA), the organization that holds International CES is Las Vegas. He is a commentator on local Washington, DC television news programs, and has been frequently quoted in The Washington Post and Washingtonian magazine on consumer electronics topics, as well as in numerous industry trade magazines. He also has a regular column in Dealerscope Magazine.

FIVE THINGS TO LISTEN FOR WHEN CHOOSING the best SUBWOOFER for you

Adding a subwoofer is one of the most noticeable upgrades you can make to the performance of an audio system or home theater. The best subwoofers add massive impact in terms of low frequency extension and output, without negatively affecting the overall accuracy and believability of the system’s sound.

A great subwoofer is also brand agnostic. If doing its job correctly, you can blend a subwoofer with any brand of speakers and it will faithfully fill in the low end without calling undue attention to itself or taking over the soundstage. When it comes to subwoofers, there’s a line of thinking that says louder and lower is always better. The reality is, there are five things you should listen for when choosing the best subwoofer for your audio system.

1. Deep low frequency extension – This seems obvious, but many subwoofers don’t have the ability to reproduce the deepest bass, and they attempt to make up for it by exaggerating the mid-bass performance to address the deficit, resulting in a bloated and inaccurate sound. A great subwoofer is capable of delivering all the low frequencies in the content being played, sometimes at frequencies so low they can only be felt, not heard!

2. Produce low frequencies at the highest sound pressure levels (SPLs) – A great subwoofer plays effortlessly loud and distortion free, no matter how demanding the source material. Lesser subwoofers use amplifier limiting to cap output, resulting in the bass “disappearing” when the listener turns up the volume past conversational levels. A subwoofer should always match the level of your speakers with headroom to spare so you can experience the full impact of all your content.

3. Accuracy in frequencies produced, and NOT produced – A great subwoofer adds no sonic signature and is completely faithful to the source content delivering the bass notes or low frequencies exactly as the artist or director intended. Lesser subwoofers deliver boomy “one note” bass that is never convincing and can actually be distracting by muddying up the soundstage. Bass notes should be pitch perfect and at just the right level to create an immersive experience.

4. Have speed and control in transients to stop and start with precision – A great subwoofer has speed in musical or cinematic transients so as to keep pace with the content. Lesser subwoofers can’t keep up with challenging content or full range speakers, making the overall system sound smeared and undetailed. A subwoofer with crisp speed in transients can realistically portray the snap of a kickdrum, the pluck of bass guitar strong or the power of an explosion with authority and precision.

5. Blend seamlessly with full range speakers – Subwoofers are awesome, but no one wants to hear bass alone or over-emphasized. In order to function properly a subwoofer must be a seamless part of the overall sound of the system, never drawing attention to the bass alone. It should feel like one cohesive soundstage with accurate imaging of voices and action and pinpoint blending at any volume, throughout the frequency spectrum.

EXPERIENCE THESE SVS SUBWOOFERS AT CLASSIC STEREO

SVS SB 16 Ultra subwoofer
SVS SB 16 Ultra subwoofer
SVS 4000 SB 4000 Photo
SVS SB 4000 Subwoofer
SVS SB 2000 subwoofer
SVS SB 2000 subwoofer
SVS SB 1000 Subwoofer
SVS SB 1000 Subwoofer

From strumming bass guitar riffs and drum beats to the most complex and demanding movie sound effects, a great subwoofer reveals deep layers of sound a speaker is simply not equipped to handle. And while some subwoofers merely add bass, a truly great subwoofer elevates the listening experience in a unique and visceral way.

– Gary Yacoubian, SVS President
Classic Stereo Showroom Grand Rapids

At Classic Stereo, we have the best selection of subwoofers in Michigan, including multiple models by SVS, considered by CNET and many other experts to be the gold standard for subwoofers. If you have questions about which is the best subwoofer for your home theater or music system, or anything else, contact us here.

Paradigm Persona Speakers Earning Awards & Praise

Paradigm Persona Speakers

The Paradigm Persona line of speakers find an interesting way to both stand out and disappear at the same time.

Their looks stand out. The line offers a unique design and four very distinct color choices.

However, they designed the sound to make it feel like your speakers disappear. The speakers take on the “persona” of what you play.

We always strive to offer the best products in our showroom. Other audio experts agree. Just look at the awards and what the experts say about the Paradigm Persona line of speakers.

HIGH PRAISE FOR PARADIGM PERSONA

Dealerscope 2018 Impact Awards

DEALERSCOPE 2018 IMPACT! AWARD
PERSONA 9H

Of course, music is only as good as the tools used to play it. Enter the Paradigm Persona 9H. Acoustically, the Persona 9H can out-muscle heavyweights twice its price.

Audioholics Logo

2017 AUDIOHOLICS PRODUCT OF THE YEAR AWARD WINNER
PERSONA 5F

What struck us about these speakers wasn’t their balanced sound character, or impressive build quality or aesthetics, but their stunning midrange clarity which had no equal.

Soundstage HiFi logo

SOUNDSTAGE PRODUCTS OF THE YEAR
PERSONA 7F

They consistently projected a wonderfully open, detailed, effortless top end capable of communicating vast amounts of space, balance, drive — and, inevitably, emotion. The Persona 7Fs have proven themselves a benchmark product at their price point, which makes granting them a Reviewers’ Choice award a foregone conclusion.

Secrets of Home Theater and High Fidelity

SECRETS OF HOME THEATER AND HIGH FIDELITY
PERSONA 7F

There is no doubt that Paradigm pulled out all the stops with this one, with the beryllium drivers, advanced cabinet design and other technologies that they refined over the years. They were looking to make a statement and boy, did they.

SEE AND HEAR THEM IN OUR SHOWROOM

Classic Stereo Showroom Grand Rapids

You can take the experts at their word, or visit our Classic Stereo showroom to form your own opinion.

Test a variety of brands and models in our speaker room. The Persona line of speakers in The Den also gives you a great preview of how they would look in your home.

Wireless vs. Bluetooth speakers – Electronics 101

Wireless vs Bluetooth Speakers Feature Image

Using the right words can be very important in life. That is one of the many ways our experts can ask the right questions to make sure you get the right products. In this week’s Classic Stereo Electronics 101, Mike Smith talks about the difference between wireless speakers and Bluetooth speakers.

WIRELESS VS. BLUETOOTH SPEAKERS

In essence, a wireless speaker does not require any SPEAKER WIRES. However, wireless speakers usually need to be plugged into an electrical outlet, then they work with a source through a network.

Many people also refer to Bluetooth speakers as wireless. A Bluetooth speaker has no wires at all. They usually store a charge and work with their source through Bluetooth.

Classic Stereo Showroom Grand Rapids

TEST THEM OUT IN OUR SHOWROOM

Visit our showroom to test the best speakers in wireless, Bluetooth and all formats. Our Electronics Professionals can help you decide which is best for your needs.

A Box Suite At Home: Bringing The Stadium To You

Electronics 101 Projection Screen - TRUE 4K

It’s a dream for many sports fans. Sitting in the box suite at the big game, which is basically bringing the luxuries of home to the stadium.

That dream is out of reach for most us. However, we can bring the feel of being in the stadium right into your home. With how many games you watch at home each year, improving your in-home experience presents a much better value because you can enjoy it more often.

IT STARTS WITH EYE MOVEMENT

There is a more scientific reason why big screen TV’s make you feel like you are a part of the action. Bigger screens increase your eye movement which increases your engagement with what you are watching.

Our experts can help you secure the biggest TV’s, but you might be better off thinking about a projection system. A projector and screen can really maximize your space, but also disappear when you need it too.

Think you have to keep your room dark or lose picture quality when you get a projection screen? Think again.

Outdoor TV Blog showroom photo HDR TV

PICTURE QUALITY MATTERS TOO

Many people know about 4K TV and how four times more pixels can improve your picture quality. However, HDR TV and screens with a Wide Color Gamut make a big difference too.

HDR TVs with a Wide Color Gamut can achieve a wider range of brightness, darkness and a wider arrangement of colors. If the color more closely resembles what you would see in real life, then the picture on your screen looks more like a window into your event.

THE DARKHORSE – AUDIO

There are people in Hollywood getting paid a lot of money and winning major awards for the sound they produce in a movie. Great sound makes you FEEL like you are experiencing the event.

When you are at the game, all of the sounds surround you. It’s not just a tinny sound in front of you. Sounds at a game have bass and hit you from every angle (including behind you and above you).

Classic Stereo has the best equipment for surround sound and the next level, Dolby Atmos. Experience Dolby Atmos sound when you visit the Reference Theater in our showroom.

Classic Stereo Reference Theater

A GREAT HOME THEATER TAKES TEAMWORK

We like to say that your viewing experience acts like a chain. Your home setup is only as good as its weakest link.

Too many people get a hodgepodge of equipment and then set it up wrong.

Average equipment set up perfectly is better than the best equipment without a plan.

Our installers are internationally-acclaimed for their work on Home Theaters, Media Rooms and more.

Let us make a plan with you to maximize your space and create a box suite experience in your home.

PORTABLE DAC IMPROVES LISTENING ON THE GO

Electronics 101 Preamp Subwoofer DAC

Have you ever seen someone plug their headphones into a box, then plug that box into a laptop or phone? That person is likely improving their listening experience with a portable DAC. You can do it too with a visit to Classic Stereo. John Higgs talks about them in our latest version of Electronics 101.

WHAT IS A DAC?

DAC stands for Digital to Analog Converter. When you store music on your phone or laptop, it saves as data. Your laptop or phone already has one that converts the 0’s and 1’s into analog music that we can hear.

The portable ones you find in our Classic Stereo showroom are designed specifically to improve music. Not only does it improve the sound quality, it also acts as an amplifier for your headphones.

Add a quality portable DAC and a quality pair of headphones to your laptop or phone and you can start to replicate the quality sound you hear at home.

They are easy to store too. Most portable DAC’s are not much bigger than a cell phone that would fit into your pants pocket or purse.

TRY ONE OUT IN OUR SHOWROOM

Never used one? Don’t think it makes a difference? Visit our showroom to try it out yourself. Hook it up to your phone or laptop and tell us if you hear a difference.

Classic Stereo Showroom Grand Rapids

learn more about electronics

SVS 4000 SERIES SUBWOOFERS DRAW HIGH PRAISE

SVS 4000 series

If you have not visited our Classic Stereo showroom lately, you need to visit us to hear the new critically acclaimed SVS 4000 series subwoofer.

what EXPERTS say ABOUT THE SVS 4000 SERIES SUBS

CNET Logo SVS 400 series subs

CNET is the world’s leader in tech product reviews, news, prices, videos, forums, how-to’s and more. The magazine’s top audio reviewer Steve Guttenberg reviewed the SB 4000.

“A reference-grade subwoofer that doesn’t merely dish out room-rattling home theater effects, it’s also very musical. I’ve never heard bass like this in the CNET listening room! I highly recommend it”

Click here to see his full review.

Home Theater Review Logo SVS 4000

Dennis Burger gave the PB 4000 five stars for performance, value and a five-star overall rating.

“SVS has another undeniable winner on its hands here—one that outperforms its predecessor while delivering improved aesthetics at a cheaper sticker price. I could not give it a heartier recommendation.

Click here to see the full review.

Audioholics Logo SVS 4000 review

James Larsen reviewed the SVS 4000 series and seems to prefer the cylinder subs.

“SVS leveraged the march of progress in technology to make their classic 13-Ultra design better without a significant cost increase. SVS 4000 Series Subwoofers offer significant gains.This is nothing but good news for subwoofer enthusiasts.”

Click here to read his full review.

SVS SUBS IN OUR SHOWROOM

SVS 4000 SB 4000 Photo

SB 4000

SVS SB 16 Ultra subwoofer

SB 16 ULTRA PG

SVS SB 2000 Subwoofer

SB 2000

SVS SB 1000 Subwoofer

SB 1000

VISIT US TO FORM YOUR OWN REVIEW

Visit our showroom to give these SVS subs your own review. Our Electronics Professionals will guide you to the right one for your needs and even let you test them against the competition.

You can also contact us online to get more information and a price quote.