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Verge Favorites: Chris Welch

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The Verge staffers aren't just people who love technology. They're people who love stuff. We spend as much time talking and thinking about our favorite books, music, and movies as we do debating the best smartphone to buy or what point-and-shoot has the tightest macro. We thought it would make sense to share our latest obsessions with Verge readers, and we hope you're encouraged to share your favorites with us. Thus a long, healthy debate will ensue where we all end up with new things to read, listen to, or try on.

Beasts of the Southern Wild (Blu-ray)


I loved this movie after buying a ticket on a whim during its theatrical release, and Blu-ray does a superb job replicating the big screen experience with a terrific transfer and audio track. But regardless of how you see this film, you'll be blown away by the performance of Quvenzhané Wallis, who was just six years old when Beasts of the Southern Wild was filmed. She's now nominated for Best Actress at this year's Academy Awards — the youngest nominee in that category's history — and even the leader of the free world called this unique fantasy drama "spectacular." If that’s not high praise, I’m not sure what is.

Fiio E10 USB DAC


I picked this little guy up from Adorama over the holidays, and now it travels anywhere and everywhere my MacBook Pro goes. A standalone DAC should be essential kit if you own any pair of high-end headphones, and its hard to beat the price / performance ratio of this one. Maybe you think music sounds just fine coming out of your integrated PC or Mac soundcard, but if you're investing in pricey cans (or speakers) and don't have hardware capable of getting the most out of them, you're shortchanging yourself.

DSLR Camera Controller


DSLR Controller has quickly risen to become one of my favorite Android apps. It grants you full control over any recent Canon EOS DSLR, giving you a direct glimpse of Live View (with tap-to-focus) and letting you adjust virtually any setting on the camera remotely. All you need is a USB host cable to connect your Android phone or tablet to the camera. If you don't own a Wi-Fi enabled camera like the 6D or Sony's NEX-6, there's no easy way to do this on iOS — unless you're willing to pay over $100 for something like CamRanger.

Michael Jackson: Live at Wembley Stadium 1988


I try to avoid buying DVDs these days, sticking to Blu-ray wherever possible. But I can't exactly fault Michael Jackson's estate for limiting this release of his 1988 Bad tour performance at Wembley Stadium to standard-def only. The recording is sourced from a VHS tape discovered in Jackson's personal collection following his death. Despite some restoration efforts, the video quality remains mediocre at best, though thankfully the audio side fares a bit better. Yet it's easy to look past any flaws because for two hours you're joining the 72,000 who were on hand that night to witness Jackson at the pinnacle of his performing career, before controversy would seep into and overtake his life in the decades to follow.

Power A FUS1ON PlayStation 3 controller


I loathe the DualShock. Absolutely hate it. No controller has resulted in more hand cramps and general discomfort during gaming sessions — and it's not like I'm even playing for long before misery suddenly kicks in. In my eyes, Microsoft perfected controller ergonomics with the Xbox 360, so it should come as no surprise that I'd take interest in a PS3 controller modeled shamelessly after its 360 counterpart. And that's exactly what Power A has delivered with FUS1ON. Since it's aimed at the hardcore, "pro" gamer crowd, we're dealing with a wired controller here which may be viewed as a setback for some. But everything else you'd want is here, including vibration and even Sixaxis support for those games that still incorporate Sony's long-forgotten motion sensing technology. Just leave those backlit buttons off. For everyone's sake.