TAVES grid

Where Technology Meets Lifestyle – TAVES Is Canada’s Ultimate Technology Showcase Loaded with Fun for the Whole Family!

Canada’s largest consumer technology event, the TAVES Consumer Electronics Show, will run this Friday, Oct. 13 to Sunday, Oct. 15 at the Toronto Congress Centre.

Get your geek on at TAVES, Canada’s premiere showcase of the hottest consumer technology and home entertainment!  Featuring the latest innovations and products from around the planet, we’ve got three days of high-octane, hands-on experiences for geeks and wanna-be geeks of every age.

Show highlights include:

  • Canadian company Panacea Nova will do a world-launch of a revolutionary medical wearable that analyzes the user’s blood biochemistry and makes herbal and dietary recommendations
  • Meet the Wheely robot from Smart Wheel Canada, as it zooms around the show floor and interacts with visitors
  • Cheer for your favourite robots as they face off in a sumo style fight at the Bot Brawl, Canada’s biggest robot combat event
  • Try out the latest in virtual and augmented reality devices
  • Test drive electric cars and other green vehicles including e-Bikes, scooters, all terrain hoverboards and unicycles
  • Fly one of the latest drones from DJI in the TAVES Drone Cage

Presented by TOTEM, Canada’s leading manufacturer of high-end loudspeakers, TAVES 2017  features our boldest, most diverse lineup ever. Our Technology and Innovation Pavilion will showcase cutting edge virtual and augmented reality devices, 3D printers, robots, fasion tech, smart apparel, wearables. personal transportation devices, drones, home automation, as well as an array of apps and prototypes about to hit the market.

Our audio and home theatre zones will overwhelm your senses with the latest in superior sound and display technology from global brands and boutique innovators alike. Try out a dizzying array of ear gear, headphones, amps, players and accessories that deliver sound in stunning, immersive clarity.

Sign up your kids for a TAVES workshop led by professional educators — there are over a dozen topics to choose from ranging from robotics to Lego and coding.  Spaces are limited!

TAVES Talks Tech (T3), our eclectic series of entertaining, informative and sometimes provocative sessions about the electrifying world of consumer technology, brings the future into dazzling focus — from the mind-blowing world of virtual reality to high-resolution audio.

Running Oct. 13-15, 2017 at the Toronto Congress Centre, there’s something for every taste and curiosity. Show times: Friday, October 28, 11am-7pm; Saturday, October 29, 10am-6pm; Sunday, 10 am-4pm.

Tickets start at $25 at  Save $3 off admission by using promo code NOVO17 on the ticket page.


Totem Signature One Loudspeaker Review.indd

Does music move your soul? I’ve been fascinated by music ever since I can remember. Playing various instruments and listening to music has always made me feel good in ways that I couldn’t explain. Now as an adult I understand exactly why. Research shows that listening to music improves mental well-being and boosts our physical health, among other benefits. Isn’t that astonishing? I guess I’m in the right line of work.

Montreal-based Totem Acoustic, led by industry icon Vince Bruzzese, has been in the business of making people feel good for a long time and today, the company has a lot to be happy about. This year marks the Totem’s 30th birthday and things have never looked brighter. Since 1987, the company has developed award winning loudspeaker designs that connect music lovers around the planet with their beloved music in the deepest of ways. Totem is also one of the very few hifi manufacturers that has managed to make their products sexy and appeal to broader audiences, not just audiophiles. There’s a headline on Totem’s website that resonates really well with me – it reads “Music is like space travel, it brings you places”. It is one of the best ways I’ve heard to describe music, ever. This is precisely how I feel when listening to music.

Today, Totem makes over 50 loudspeaker models, ranging from bookshelves and towers, to centre channels, subwoofers and even on-wall, and in-wall speakers. To celebrate its 30th birthday, Totem introduced a few very special loudspeakers this year, including the Tribe tower, SKY Monitor, Sky Tower and Kin Architectural series models. I had a chance to listen to the first two this spring and was very impressed with what I heard, but when I learned about the Signature One speaker, I knew that this would be “the one” (pun intended) that I wanted to bring into my listening room for a closer listen. Why all this excitement about the Signature One? It’s a speaker with a great story and a promise of outstanding sound.

Back in 1987, Vince Bruzzese began work on a loudspeaker called the Model 1, Totem’s very first loudspeaker. After two years in development, the Model 1 was released in 1989 and received with remarkable acclaim. It offered an exciting, highly musical performance that easily competed with loudspeakers many times larger than itself. The Signature One, the subject of this review is a highly anticipated follow up to the Model 1. But don’t mistake it as an evolution of the Model 1, the Signature One is a completely new design, utilizing today’s technology and crafted to modern standards. Performance-wise, the Signature One is said to deliver the same levels of vertical imaging, speed and articulation as the company’s reference-grade Element Metal loudspeaker, but in a much smaller form factor. I’ve listened to the Element Metal on a few occasions, and so I know that’s a tall order.

Let’s take a closer look at the Signature One. Its design marries a 6.5” mid/bass driver – derived from Totem’s popular Forest model – with a 1” SEAS tweeter. The mid/bass driver has a massive 3” voice coil and is said to effortlessly handle dynamic peaks up to 600 watts, without distortion. The tweeter, housed in its own chamber, features a metal dome made of an aluminum/titanium alloy. The speaker’s nominal impedance of 8 ohms, makes this a much easier speaker for amplifiers to drive, versus the 4 ohm impedance of the Model 1. This carefully designed drive combination creates a synergy between them resulting in spectacular phase linearity and uncanny holographic imaging.

From the outside, the Signature One is a classically styled speaker, offering an ageless design. It looks like a traditional speaker box and it shouldn’t look aged a decade from now, unless all speakers suddenly become egg-shaped. As a matter of fact, the cabinetry is a single piece monocoque design chassis for better structural integrity just like a Formula 1 race car, featuring lock miter corner joints with all internal surfaces that are veneered then further treated with borosilicate – the best energy dissipater for this type of application. The result is a loudspeaker built to last for another 30 years just like the original Model 1 has. How much is it going to cost you? A very approachable $2,650 US.

QNAP TS-251 Review v2.indd

Love it or hate it, we live in a world driven by data. Everything from your favourite TV shows to family pictures and work files reside as data on some type of a storage device. The trouble is that our data is usually scattered among a number of devices such as desktop computers, laptops, smartphones and tablets. As a result, locating a specific file can be as much fun as trying to find a lost friend at a big music festival, where cell phone reception is spotty at best. So wouldn’t it be great if you had a centralized storage device for all your data, one that would allow you to access these files from anywhere on the planet?

You may have never heard the term Network Attached Storage (or NAS) but in fact, this product category has existed for a number of years now. Those who already have one in their home or office probably couldn’t imagine life without it. So what is a NAS you ask? A NAS is essentially a mini-computer dedicated to file storage, sharing and data backup, allowing you to access the files from all devices connected to your home network. It also allows you to access your files remotely over the internet via your laptop or smartphone while travelling. In a home setting, a NAS is commonly also used as a media center, used to store video, music, pictures and documents. These files can be accessed by other computers on your home network, as well as TVs, smartphones and tablets. In a business environment, a NAS is typically used to share files between co-workers in remote locations, and configured with advanced security settings. If you have security cameras in your home or business, a NAS can also be used to store loops of security video footage. Regardless of the setting, a NAS basically allows you to set up your “personal cloud” storage with a massive amount of storage space, and without any monthly fees. NAS servers were once relegated to the world of computer geeks because they required a lot of technical know-how to configure and operate. However luckily companies like QNAP, have developed app-based NAS computers that are much easier to set up and friendlier than ever to use.

QNAP, which is short form for Quality Network Appliance Provider, is a Taiwan based company that was founded in 2004 and expanded rapidly to make its products available worldwide. In addition to a full range of consumer and business NAS solutions, QNAP also offers a great selection of network video recorder (NVR) surveillance products.

In this article, I take a detailed look at the QNAP TS-251+ NAS model from the company’s “Home & SOHO” product range. Priced at $349 US, this unit is equipped with a Quad-core Intel Celeron 2.0GHz processor, 8 GBs of RAM, 2-hard drive bays, real-time & offline 1080p video transcoding, and a 1080p video output via an HDMI connection. An HDMI output is a bit of a rare gem on NAS devices and makes this QNAP stand out from the crowd, it also makes it perfectly suited for use as a home media centre. Other highlights include 2 x Gigabit LAN ports, 2 x 3.0 USB ports and 2 x 2.0 USB ports. To see full specifications, please visit As with most NAS solutions, the user needs to provide their own choice of hard drive(s). The TS-251+ is compatible with standard 2.5” and 3.5” drives as well as Solid State Drives (SSD). A small remote control is provided to make multimedia playback on your TV a snap.

QNAP TS-251+ 2-Bay Turbo Network Attached Storage (NAS) Review 03

Out of the box, you can have this QNAP running in about 30 minutes with the default settings but as with any computer system, there are near limitless ways to tweak its configuration. Advanced users can configure this QNAP as a Virtual Machine (VM), which allows you to run software on different operating systems. The hard drives can be installed in a RAID 1 configuration for data storage redundancy, in case one of the drives fails. A RAID 0 configuration is also possible, if you prefer speed over redundancy.

Initial setup of the QNAP was a breeze. I popped in a fresh hard drive, and plugged in the power and an Ethernet cable, connecting it to my home network, out of sight in a basement room. I then followed the software setup instructions in my web browser. I left all settings in their default modes, something most home users will likely do, but advanced users might want to adjust some of the initial settings. What I really enjoyed about the set up of the QNAP were the guided on-screen tutorials which clearly explained every step in detail. As with any initial computer or NAS setup, it helps to be comfortable working with computers. I ran into a couple of small issues during the setup and had to turn to Google to find a solution. Luckily, lots of solutions for QNAP products can be easily found online.



Another Reality, an upcoming virtual reality theme park + studio in Toronto, will enable TAVES attendees to experience the very latest in VR & AR at the upcoming show.  The TAVES Consumer Electronics Show runs at the Toronto Congress Centre from Oct. 13-15, 2017 — see for more info.

In addition to trying some of the newest VR games and experiences, Another Reality will offer visitors a chance to design an object in VR and then 3D print it right on the show floor!  This experience will be possible thanks to a collaboration with The North Fabritory, a local 3D print shop and 3D printer retailer.

And that’s certainly not all – Another Reality has some other surprises up its sleeve – but we don’t want to blow all the surprises!

Come out to TAVES and see for yourself!  Use promotional code NOVO17 to save $3 off your TAVES ticket at


DiVRge Toronto

DiVRge VR is a new arcade that has opened its doors at Yonge and Eglinton to bring Virtual Reality to all Torontonians wishing to try out this new technology. This Virtual Reality arcade offers a one of a kind experience built around having fun in its purest form. The location features 18 HTC Vive headsets, as well as other cutting edge VR technologies such as the Roto-chair, an advanced racing simulation device. Located at 2711 Yonge Street, diVRge will be adding a new type of entertainment to the Yonge street promenade strip around Eglinton Avenue.

The founders of diVRge are four young local entrepreneurs: Kirill Moisyev, Faraz Malek, Kevin Sloan and Greg Zoub. These University of Toronto graduates chose to pursue this business to help proliferate VR and make it more widely available for the average consumer. Given that you need a powerful computer to be able to run the HTC Vive headset, the cost of an average VR set up is anywhere between $4000-$6500. This makes it cost prohibitive for many wishing to use the technology, and DiVRge is set to provide it at the affordable rate of 29.95/hour.

DiVRge encourages people of all ages and technology proficiency levels to come out and take part in the growing wave that is VR. One of the primary focuses is making the experience accessible to everyone. First time users are greeted with a detailed yet simple welcome video which educates them on the dos and don’ts of the technology. If there are still any questions or concerns, DiVRge has a highly-trained team at the ready to assist the customers to ensure that their time in the virtual world feels flawless.

The space will also feature a lounge area, which can be rented out for birthday parties, and events. If a visitor wants to experience VR beyond gaming, diVRge is well equipped for that. There will be alternative content available, such as the Google Tilt Brush where one can unleash their artistic creativity regardless of their abilities in real life. DiVRge will be open from 3 pm to 11 pm on weekdays and 11 am to midnight on weekends.

DiVRge VR is a premium virtual reality arcade stocked with the latest hardware and software and offers access to virtual reality in an accessible and social setting at an affordable price point. League nights and other special events are offered on a recurring basis. For more info and the latest updates please visit

Here are just a few of the titles currently offered at diVRge:

DiVRge Toronto VR games


Dyson Electric Cars

British inventor James Dyson revolutionized the vacuum cleaner industry and now he’s got his sights set on electric cars.  In a recently announcement, Dyson said that his team of 400 engineers has been hard at work on this £2.5bn project since 2015.  He promised for his electric car to be “radically different” from current electric cars in the market.  Although he did not reveal how much the vehicle would cost, he did say that it will be “all about the technology” and mentioned that it would be expensive.  The design will not be based on any existing vehicle platform, it will be designed from the ground up by Dyson’s engineers.  Dyson also said that its batteries will be more efficient compared to those in current electric vehicles.

Read the full article over at The Guardian.


Hafler PH60B 01

Hafler (a division of Radial Engineering Ltd.) has just began shipping its brand new high performance PH50B and PH60B preamps.

The PH50B and PH60B are phono preamps that feature both unbalanced RCA and balanced XLR outputs for connection to HIFI playback systems or pro audio equipment. With the continued resurgence of vinyl production and sales, the PH50B and PH60B help address a growing market for high quality standalone phono stages. The original PH50 and PH60 quickly earned the accolades of recording industry legends including Alan Parsons and Chuck Ainlay, who praised their audio quality and transparency. Now with the addition of balanced XLR outputs, the PH50B and PH60B can be easily connected with pro audio equipment such as mixing consoles and recording interfaces, allowing for playback in the studio or digitization of vinyl collections.

The PH50B is designed for moving magnet (MM) cartridges, while the PH60B includes a second gain stage for low output moving coil (MC) cartridges. Both units feature gold-plated RCA inputs and outputs to provide optimal signal transfer without tarnishing over time. True +4dB line level signals are available at the XLR outputs, which can be switched to -10dB operation via an internal push-switch. Ground lift switches help to eliminate buzz and hum from ground loops when connected to these XLR outputs, and a low cut filter eliminates excessive low frequencies and turntable rumble. Additionally, the PH60B features internal jumpers that adjust the input impedance for ideal matching with different moving coil cartridges.

Whether they are connected to a high fidelity home theater or professional audio equipment, the PH50B and PH60B are sure to deliver the unmatched performance and absolute reliability typical of all Hafler products.

MSRP: PH50B: $449.99 USD, PH60B: $549.99 USD.  For more info, jump to

Hafler PH50B


Cover 04.pdf


Features inside this issue:

  • Your Digital Dorm Room: 7 Tech Products to Help You Make It Through This School Year
  • New Product Spotlight: Panacea Nova Docture-P Wearable
  • TAVES Consumer Electronics Show Preview
  • How I Became a Music and Gear Nerd

Product reviews:

  • Totem Acoustic Signature One Loudspeaker
  • Bryston BryFi BW-1 Wireless Amplified Loudspeaker
  • Mitchell & Johnson GL2 and MJ2 Headphones
  • Monitor Audio Monitor Audio Silver Series 500 Loudspeakers (6th Generation)

Click the green VIEW button above to open this issue or view this issue using one of these apps:

Tablet / Smartphone Editions: CANADA HiFi app  |  Magzster app (iOS or Andriod)  |  PressReader app (iOS or Andriod)
Computers: PDF Edition (ideal for printing)


House of HiFi 01 (Custom)

Looking to take in some music this weekend?  This Saturday, Sept. 9th, a brand new hifi store called the House of HiFi will open its doors in Burlington, Ontario.  Even if you don’t live in the area, it’ll be worth going for a weekend drive, not only to check out the new store but to also take in some of the beautiful scenery of Burlington.

Inside the store you’ll find a wealthy selection of electronics and speakers, from brand names such as Accustic Arts, Arcam, Hafler, Teac, Unison Research, Acapella, Audeze, Audiovector, JL Audio, Master & Dynamic, Mitchell & Johnson, Revel and more.  And if you’re into records, you’ll be happy to explore turntables from Acoustic Solid, Audio Technica, Goldnote, along with many phono accessories.

So swing on by the House of HiFi this weekend and be ready to enjoy some good tunes!

House of HiFi is located at 2443 Glenwood School Drive (Unit 4), just west of Guelph Line and Queensway Drive in Burlington.

House of HiFi 02 (Custom)

House of HiFi 03 (Custom)


Human Touch Novo XT massage chairs

Human Touch, a leader in innovative massage chairs, recliners, and other wellness solutions, is pleased to announce distribution agreement with Erikson Consumer, who will serve as the Canadian distributor. Erikson Consumer (a division of Jam Industries) is one of Canada’s largest independent distributors, with more than 40 years in the consumer electronics category. This agreement will expand the presence of Human Touch wellness solutions in the Canadian marketplace.

“We’re extremely pleased with this new distribution agreement,” said Peter Theran, Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Human Touch. “Erikson Consumer has an established and commanding presence in the Canadian market, and this partnership will provide excellent service for our dealers and owners of our products across Canada.”

Through Erikson Consumer, Human Touch will offer a variety of new and innovative products, including high-performance Novo XT massage chairs and therapeutic Perfect Chair recliners. Both of these products have exclusive endorsements by the World Federation of Chiropractic (WFC) as a valid supplement to back care therapies. They have also each been recognized by the Design Journal Award for Design Excellence (ADEX) with multiple awards which celebrate their design form and function.

“Human Touch has a proven history of innovative design and commitment to high quality wellness products,” says Kevin Walsh, Product Manager, Erikson Consumer. “We are excited to represent Human Touch products in Canada and to have the opportunity to grow their foot print across Canada.”

For more info, jump to