Top Gun: Maverick wasn’t what I was expecting but was none the less enjoyable for that.
We know from the now 2 year old ‘making of’ trailers how much effort went into capturing the real life flying scenes but for me the visual spectacle didn’t translate to the big screen significantly more than the equivalent scenes from the original.
What did unexpectedly move me was the maturity of the story elements around the characters. Top Gun was almost a coming of age movie about internal conflicts but TG2, rather like Trainspotting 2 finds new material in the things that matter to its now older and somewhat wiser protagonists. Managing relationships in a new mindset with less bravado but more recognition and acceptance of oneself and others and knowing that sometimes we just don’t know.
Yes, the plot may be ridiculous and we can see the manipulations coming but nevertheless I found myself welling up at those moments of mass audience acknowledgement of some of life’s truths and values. Hard work, honesty, tact, camaraderie, courage, compromise, humbleness, mutual respect and understanding.
We may not know the answers but perhaps the message is that sometimes just trusting our instincts is more valuable than thinking, conveyed in the somewhat hackneyed but pithy line:
Like a son, TG2 may inherit some of its forebear’s characteristics but is an entity of its own. Enjoy the ride.
There are a lot of glowing reviews of the latest flagship TV from Samsung, the S95B. Samsung Display’s new and much awaited QD-OLED technology brings extra brightness and colour volume to the inky blacks of regular W-OLED technology, but if you scour the TV reviewer videos, AV websites and shopper reviews you’ll find a surprising number of less than positive aspects reported too.
I’ve summarised those I’ve found so far below but leave a comment if there’s anything I’ve missed.
Starting with a thread of 15 issues based on this TV YouTuber’s findings:
I’ve lumped these problems, plus those from other sources, into a set of categories:
Cheaper LEDs like the Sony X95K and its kin have as many strengths and come in larger screen sizes
Finally, trust your eyes – look at some footage of a real life scene and see which TV looks more realistic and involving. And if the measurements of the TV you prefer are worse than some other TV then the measurements are measuring the wrong things – things that don’t necessarily reflect our perception.
And beware the shills and bots lurking in the comments – you need look no further than those in my last video to see the kind of unsubstantiated hype they come out with!
In a nutshell, this latest evolution of Sennheiser’s Momentum True Wireless Bluetooth earphones offers an adaptive codec that should handle dropouts over distance better, improved ANC and call quality in noisy environments and more secure fit with a popular tuning that emphasises female vocals over the previous generation.
Love: sound quality is among the top tier with, by default, more forward female vocals than its predecessors which, while not to my taste, has a fresher, livelier sound that many may prefer.
Like: comfort, security of fit, the unobtrusive design that sits more flush in the ear, responsiveness of touch controls, lightness, microphone quality, water resistant IPX4 rating, long battery life, Qi charging, removing from the ear automatically pauses a track and replacing it resumes, activating transparency mode automatically pauses a track and deactivating resumes, transparency mode works well, ANC is good for an earphone (tho headphone ANC is much more effective) and does not affect EQ when switched on, the App offers good configuration of touch operation and EQ with my ideal touch configuration for volume (hold), pause (tap) and skip (double tap) by default, and there is no noticeable latency when watching videos.
Dislike: looks which are less distinctive and premium than the previous model, difficulty connecting to a 5y old Windows laptop, the charging port being at the front, the default tuning slightly emphasising upper mids with less bass rumble, single bud use only working with the right bud, there being no multipoint pairing allowing connection to and automatic switching between 2 devices at the same time like your phone and laptop, without unpairing and repairing, Sennheiser make you register to use the Sound Check custom EQ and Sound Zones location based EQ, there is some hiss at the higher levels of transparency mode, and finally value for pure sound quality, which is always my number one priority, is only fair.
I’ve characterised the review this way since a love can outweigh a dislike and vice versa, making simply totting up points in categories like sound quality, comfort, control scheme, security of fit, battery life, connectivity, etc. rather academic. In the final analysis, arguably the best buds are the ones you end up using the most.
The MTW3 maintains the solid foundation of the previous model but with a popular Harman style tuning that brings female vocals more forward in the mix. Such a tuning can emphasise female vocals at the expense of male however the MTW3 remains a good performer with both male (Peter Gabriel’s Heroes) and female (Nitin Sawhney’s Nadia) vocals being involving. They have a tight and deep but marginally less rumbly bass than their predecessor though the sub bass at 3:27 of Hans Zimmer’s “Why so serious?” still comes across as satisfying, if slightly less so than on my reference TWS earphones (that also conveys the plunging into water sounds at the beginning of Dario G’s “Voices” better). Soundstage is also slightly less wide on “Fly Me To The Moon” bringing the higher registers of Sinatra’s vocals more to the foreground.
So sound wise these are a sidestep from the previous generation, with a tuning that I find less natural but that many may prefer.
As someone who rarely uses earphone ANC, for me the new and improved features do not make up for the significant additional cost over alternatives, though admittedly these are much cheaper than the launch price of Sennheiser’s previous equivalent flagship model.
If you’re happy to forego some features like the ANC and top tier transparency, lower profile, more secure fit and auto track pause there are cheaper alternatives from the same manufacturer like the CX400BT and CX series that offer the same level of sound quality in a comfortable form factor.