Wednesday Wrap – Apple TV, Pioneer update, Tidal royalties

The latest reports surrounding the new Apple TV set-top box point to an upgraded remote that will feature a touchpad instead of the current navigation buttons.

The touchpad would mirror the trackpads of Apple MacBooks and Apple's Magic Mouse and, in theory, provide a more efficient way of navigating the Apple TV.

Apple is expected to unveil a new Apple TV set-top box at the Worldwide Developer’s Conference in June. The new box is also expected to come with a new video streaming service, as well as various performance tweaks. It may even have access to Apple's new music streaming service.

Source: The New York Times

MORE: Apple TV review

Optoma Nuforce Primo8 earphones

Optoma has announced that it’s bringing its Nuforce Primo8 earphones to the UK, after a successful stint in the US. Each earphone comprises four balanced armature drivers, which claim to deliver “incredibly spacious, detailed sound.”

The cable also claims to be equally impressive, as it’s made from seven individual silver cores for “superior sound quality”, and Kevlar for “exceptional strength".

The earphones can be reshaped and adjusted to fit the users’ ears and the 1.4m tangle-free cable comes with a quick-snap connection to the earpieces. The cable also plays host to an in-line remote and mic.

The Optoma Primo8 earphones will be available from May for £400.

Tidal payouts

An unnamed independent music label has supposedly leaked its first Tidal royalty statement for March 2015. The report shows an average pay out per stream of $0.014. This would put Tidal’s payouts per stream are higher than Spotify’s, which pays between $0.006 and 0.0084 per stream.

However, Tidal claims the leaked report isn’t one of its royalty statements - and it in fact pays a higher average stream price of $0.024-$0.028.

In related Tidal news, musician Noel Gallagher, whose second album Chasing Yesterday became the UK’s fastest-selling LP of the year, has spoken out about Tidal in an interview with Rolling Stone. It seems the former Oasis guitarist is a little sceptical of the service, and particularly it’s big-name backers...

He told Rolling Stone, in his usual style: "Do these people think they're the f****** Avengers? They're going to save the f****** [world]. I was speaking to Chris [Martin] the day after, and I said, 'Are you after a Nobel Peace Prize? Is that what you're after?' They were like, 'We're going to f****** save the music business.' And I'm just sitting there, thinking you might want to write a decent chorus for a f****** start."

Source: Complex Music / Rolling Stone

MORE: Tidal review

Pioneer N-50A/N-70A update

Pioneer has announced a firmware update for the N-50A and N-70A network streamers. The update will bring various improvements, included gapless playback for DSD files, fast-forward and fast-rewind of DSD files, and artwork display for FLAC files.

The update should also bring various stability upgrades to a range of features, including: Internet radio, Music Server, startup from Network Standby state and playback of DSD files via USB storage drive or external HDD.

And finally, when the Digital Out setting is on, it will synchronise with Direct mode setting on/off.

The update can be downloaded through the unit itself, or from Pioneer’s website.

MORE: Pioneer N-50A review

Max is a staff writer for What Hi-Fi?'s sister site, TechRadar, in Australia. But being the wonderful English guy he is, he helps out with content across a number of Future sites, including What Hi-Fi?. It wouldn't be his first exposure to the world of all things hi-fi and home cinema, as his first role in technology journalism was with What Hi-Fi? in the UK. Clearly he pined to return after making the move to Australia and the team have welcomed him back with arms wide open.