AVForums Writers

A list of the people writing AVForums editorial content showing who contributes towards each category of product including TVs, Home Cinema, Hi-Fi, Technology and Gaming.

Editorial Management

Phil Hinton

Phil Hinton

Phil Hinton (@philhinton) has managed the editorial content on AVForums since 2002. With the assistance of AVForums founder Stuart Wright, he established and built the editorial section starting with DVD reviews and news. Over the years it has grown substantially to include new subject areas such as home cinema, tech and gaming along with regular podcasts and videos.
As Editor-in-chief, he is responsible for all news stories, articles, reviews, podcasts and videos produced by the site in all the subject areas.

The editorial content produced by AVForums covers all aspects of home entertainment including home cinema, technology, games and movies. In order to help with the accuracy and objectivity of AVForums reviews, Phil is also a fully qualified video calibrator.

After leaving school, Phil studied radio/TV production & journalism at college, before leaving home at 17 and working in a number of jobs. He has had a keen interest in home cinema from the early days of Pro-logic & LaserDisc. In 1998 Phil joined the Police in a career that lasted 10 years. It was during that period that he started building the editorial in his spare time and finally joined AVForums full time as Editor-in-chief in 2008. His passions include cars, home cinema, movies, music, photography & film making.

News

Ian Collen

Ian Collen

Ian Collen has been working as a journalist and writer for more than 20 years. After cutting his teeth in a radio station newsroom, he moved into print, working on a variety of magazines including Essential Home Cinema back when 5.1 was considered a luxury.

The majority of his magazine life was spent in videogames, writing for and editing a number of titles, primarily XBM, 360 GAMER, ONE GAMER, PLAY GAMER and the innovative custom-made digital title GAMER Interactive. Most recently he was editor of Drone Magazine - the clue is very much in the title on that one.

Now working as a freelance writer, Ian is still spending far too much time playing games and considering it 'research', while also trying to follow the latest developments in drone technology and regulation. He is not fun at parties.

Andy Bassett

Andy Bassett

Andy started contributing to AVForums in mid 2018 and is responsible for supporting the editorial team led by Phil Hinton. Initially bought on board to update the product database behind the site and proof read the many reviews and articles the editorial team creates, Andy started looking after the AVForums' social media feeds and ensures a steady, daily stream of posts informing members of the regularly updated news and reviews available on the main site.

At the start of 2019 he began to contribute to the site's main news items and now provides daily updates on developments in the home cinema and Hi-Fi fields.

During his teenage years, Andy discovered a passion for writing and playing music and he spent several years as a professional musician. It was during this time that he became interested in the audio production side of music and how the psycho-acoustic perceptions of the human brain can be manipulated by audio technology.

A life long film buff, the video-age was a revelation to him and helped build his knowledge of cinema. He is also interested in PC gaming, though refrains from competing against anyone under the age of 30 for fear of a drubbing by younger fingers and faster responses - LucasArts style graphic adventures are much more his scene.

Home Cinema

John Archer

John Archer

John Archer (@BigJohnnyArcher) has been writing about home entertainment technology for more a quarter of a century now. And yes, he is as old as that makes him sound. In that time he's tested more soundbars, speakers, disc players, discs and, especially, projectors and televisions than quite possibly anybody else on the planet.

Not surprisingly, he doesn't get out much. In the early days of his career he was employed as a writer for such classic titles as Amiga Action, What Satellite TV, What Video and Home Cinema Choice, before going freelance in 1997.

As a freelancer John has written for just about every tech title out there - as well as (purely coincidentally!) quite a few that are no longer out there. John shares his endless mountains of AV gear with a wife who married him before realising how big a TV she'd have to put up with, and a daughter who actually thinks the big TV is pretty cool.

Martin Dew

Martin Dew

Martin lives in the UK and is an independent AV and pro cinema journalist. He has written news, features and reviews for several print magazines, including Home Cinema Choice, Essential Install, Cinema Technology and Film Journal. He is also the news editor of the US-based Home Theater Forum website. 

Martin moved to San Francisco in 1995 to join THX at Skywalker Ranch overseeing global retail training for consumer products and then as director of international sales for cinema. He subsequently joined the digital cinema division of NEC in Los Angeles, responsible for the rollout of DCI-compliant 2K cinema projectors across the Americas. He later consulted with DreamWorks Pictures at Universal City to assist with shooting schedule mapping for several major feature films. 

Having originally trained as an actor at GSA, Martin also found time to work on the other side of the camera in the US, with cast credits in Steven Spielberg's War Horse (2011), Lincoln (2012) and Bridge of Spies (2015), and Paul Thomas Anderson's The Master (2012) and Inherent Vice (2014). 

Martin is passionate about home cinema, entertainment technology and performance arts.

Matthew Eisengruber

Matthew Eisengruber

Matthew Eisengruber reviews tech and AV-related equipment for AVForums. By day he works as an IT Architect, but after hours he researches the latest audio, video and tech developments.

He's been an enthusiast since he was little, having movie nights and being blown away by X-men in HD. He would install his own car stereo systems for himself and his friends and compete in local sound competitions.

Now he is an avid music, movie and tech enthusiast who loves improving the 'home cinema experience'. He's always looking for ways to best the IMAX in the confines of his home.

Simon Lucas

Simon Lucas

Simon Lucas is a freelance technology journalist and consultant, with particular emphasis on the audio/video aspects of home entertainment.

Before embracing the carefree life of the freelancer, he was editor of What Hi-Fi? magazine and the brand's website – since then, he's written for titles such as Wired, Metro, The Guardian and T3, among many others.

Should he find himself with a spare moment, Simon likes nothing more than publishing and then quickly deleting tweets about the state of the nation (in general), the state of Aston Villa (in particular) and the state of his partner's cat via @OnlySimonLucas

Doug Pyper

Doug Pyper

Doug Pyper reviews home cinema speakers and related equipment for AVForums. He's been a home cinema enthusiast since childhood when he stumbled into his local hi-fi store and witnessed a demo of Jurassic Park on Laserdisc. He picked up a copy of VTV magazine at the newsagents, saved up enough to buy a NICAM VCR, and the rest was history. 

He started his career in the AV industry installing home cinema systems during the advent of plasma television. 

He now works as a civil servant by day, and by night spends far too much time researching room acoustics, loudspeaker data, room correction systems, subwoofer optimisation, and various other matters that make this hobby an endless rabbit hole.

Hi-Fi

Ed Selley

Ed Selley

Ed Selley (@ejselley) has been active in the audio industry since 1999 initially in retail before moving to work for manufacturers. A five year shift at Audio Partnership overseeing technical support, product training and competitor analysis was followed by shorter stints at Yamaha and Opus Technologies. The fortunate side effect of this chopping and changing was that he was involved in multiple product categories so is equally at home (or at sea depending on your perspective) with conventional two channel audio as he is with streaming and multichannel.

He now works as a journalist and consultant in the audio industry. As a member of the forums since 2003, he became part of the reviewing team in 2012 specialising towards the audio side.

At heart, Ed is still a two channel fan and spends far too much time messing about with turntables and vinyl. He tends towards the more explosive end of cinema and has managed to avoid watching every 'must watch' TV drama for nearly a decade. His other interests include photography, cookery and the consumption of beer both blond and brown. For reasons that seemed more relevant at the time, he also has a degree in War. To nobody's greater surprise than his own, he also has a wife and son.

Movies & TV Shows

Cas Harlow

Cas Harlow

Cas Harlow works as the movie review coordinator for AVForums and is responsible for all the cinema, streaming, Blu-ray and 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray content. He also organises the movie coverage, PR screenings, PR discs and competitions, and produces reviews and articles for the site, as well as participating in the podcasts.

Cas has been reviewing movie content and discs for over 20 years, is an avid film buff and is our resident movies expert, having reviewed several thousand titles both on the Big and Small Screen, across DVD, HD DVD, Blu-ray and now Ultra HD Blu-ray.

Cas is also a non-practising Barrister and practicing Solicitor and has a degree in Electronic Engineering and a Postgrad in Law.

Simon Crust

Simon Crust

Simon is a movie reviewer for AVForums and has been writing for the site since way back in 2005, having had a few years on other publications before.

He's covered every disc format across the decades, from DVD to HD DVD, Blu-ray to 4K UHD, and with ever evolving technology now finds himself preferring his own home 'cinema' experience to the real cinema.

With horror as his favourite genre, and as more than a little bit of a Doctor Who fan, Simon has enjoyed the diversity of reviewing with all its pitfalls and hidden gems.

Tom Davies

Tom Davies

Tom is a collector. That's his excuse for owning six copies of The Hobbit. When the amount of physical media in his house becomes too much, he moves house.

If you have a question about comics, films or music, he can probably answer it.

He accepts that magnetic tape is a trash medium but won't throw out all his VHS movies and audio cassettes.

His opinions on film are consistently right.

Mark Costello

Mark Costello

By day, Mark is a qualified accountant, who has spent the last twenty years trying to somehow make sense of the finances of the NHS. But by night, his Stereotypical Movie Nerd persona bursts forth and he assumes his self-appointed role as AVF's 'Tatmeister General' at the expense of spending any time at all with his long-suffering family.

Having been clogging up the various threads at AVF since 2014 in the misguided notion that watching more films than anyone else makes him 'cool', his hope of spreading his love of the most random European genre schlock continues to fall on deaf ears, but that doesn't stop him from buying and watching far more films than is remotely rational for a middle-aged man. A purveyor of cinematic tat for most of his ever-lengthening life.

Tech

Greg Hook

Greg Hook

Greg has been part of AVForums since 2001 when he joined looking for AV help and then becoming a moderator not long after.

He has been writing reviews as part of the Tech team since 2012 and will try his hand at reviewing anything from a top of the range Gaming PC to a Home Security systems.

Michelle Meek

Michelle Meek

Michelle is an editorial assistant and reviewer, helping to organise events, interviews and show floor coverage from the likes of CES.

As a keen runner, her most memorable achievement was completing the London Marathon in 2021 and she is also interested in any tech which helps with running or staying fit and reviews these products for AVForums.

David Phelan

David Phelan

David Phelan (@davidphelan2009) is an actor and tech writer (AVForums, Time Out, The Independent, Monocle, The Sunday Times, the Telegraph and the Daily Mail)

David is a freelance journalist who covers tech launches, events and news for AVForums as well as tech reviews.

Gaming

Seth Grimes

Seth Grimes

Seth has trained in multimedia journalism with a preference for games, sports, and video-making. He spent a large portion of his life so far playing games, with Final Fantasy VII being an all-time favourite and writing and reviewing have been a passion since long before he went to university.

The consoles he has his best memories on are the PS2, Xbox 360, and Gameboy Colour.

He admits that he's probably one of the most talkative people you're likely to know, which lends itself well to being a writer.

Mohammad Hamid

Mohammad Hamid

Mohammad has been working as a journalist in the interactive entertainment industry for over 10 years, now. As such, he has dedicated many hours playing video games, and is definitely one of "those guys" when it comes to titles such as Sega's Yakuza Like a Dragon franchise.

He's happy covering games for their varying mix of visual, audio, and emotional synaesthesia, with his bar standard dating back to the illuminations of a Samsung CRT that his Sega Saturn still calls home.

Rik Henderson

Rik Henderson

Rik Henderson has been writing about videogames and technology for the best part of 33 years. Also a former deputy editor of Home Cinema Choice, he not only enjoys playing games, he looks to do so in the best formats possible. Currently also a senior editor of news & features on Pocket-lint, he has edited and written for a wide variety of magazines, including CVG, Your Commodore and PC Review.

He also appeared and produced on 90s TV shows, GamesMaster and Games World.

Retired Writers

Luke Albiges

Luke Albiges

A gaming expert with over 15 years of industry experience (and more than double that with games themselves), Luke has written countless articles about videogames for dozens of major outlets over the years. He'll play bad games so you don't have to... if you can tear him away from the good ones, that is.

Mark Botwright

Mark Botwright

Mark Botwright was the site's Gaming Content Editor - overseeing the gaming reviews and articles - and usually the token gamer on the weekly podcast.

Having started out reviewing Blu-rays many moons ago, he jumped at the chance to branch out into games writing. His interest in all things joystick-related began at the tender age of eight when he was presented with a second hand Commodore 64 and an ice-cream tub overflowing with entirely legal and certainly not pirated cassettes, including the excellent Wizball.

He's since developed a compunction to buy every mainstream console, has a soft spot for Nintendo due to being in the SNES camp (all the cool kids were) and longs for Shenmue 3 and a return to proper 2D Castlevanias.

Manny Brown

Manny Brown

Manny Brown started writing videogame articles and reviews in 2007, joining the AVF team in 2010 after several years' freelance work and twelve months as a full-time editor on a gaming website.

In-between writing reviews and helping out with games PR contact for AVF, Manny splits his gaming time between PC, PS4, Xbox One, 3DS, Vita and the Dreamcast, forever holding a flickering torch aloft for the sadly-defunct Sega hardware.

You can also find him cursing the luck of Cardiff City Football Club, watching terrible films at the cinema, digging an allotment, spluttering at the gym or tinkering with the TV settings for the fifteenth time in an evening.

Stephen Carter

Stephen Carter

Stephen Carter joined AVForums in 2010 as part of the gaming editorial team. He predominantly reviewed the latest gaming releases, whilst also regularly appearing on the gaming podcast.

When he isn't gaming, Stephen can often be found posting his thoughts, and whatever else pops into is head, onto Twitter.

Niall Gill

Niall Gill

Niall was part of the gaming team.

Mark Hodgkinson

Mark Hodgkinson

Mark Hodgkinson worked as the News Editor for AVForums and was responsible for all the news stories relating to home cinema, technology, games and movies.

He also produced reviews and articles for the site, as well as participating in podcasts. As well as being a qualified video calibrator, Mark is also a fully trained chef.

Leon Matthews

Leon Matthews

Leon Matthews started reviewing games and articles for AVForums in 2010. He has an unhealthy addiction to First Person Shooters, Sci-Fi and the Walking Dead. Weaknesses include a severe allergy to the Dual Shock 3 controller, every "Youtube personality" in existence and polystyrene. Often pigeon-holed as the "shooter guy" but enjoys many games ranging from Call of Duty to Titanfall.

Leon got into games when his parents bought him a Master System II with only the built in game Alex Kidd in Miracle World to play. After realising it was a hobby he wouldn't get bored of (being glued to it), his parents allowed him to get other games like Michael Jackson: Moonwalker, Streets of Rage and every Sega child's staple, Sonic the Hedgehog. Then Doom came out and the rest; as they say; is history.

When he's not reviewing you'll usually find him practising the same 5 songs on guitar badly, breaking up fights on the gaming forums or making people rage quit on Xbox Live.

Chris McEneany

Chris McEneany

Chris McEneany has been writing about films for many years, providing in-depth coverage of cinema and Blu-ray releases, and CD film scores. He has a particular fascination for the horror genre, with an undying devotion to the classic chillers from Universal right through to the splattery excesses of Cronenberg, Romero and Fulci, and a downright embarrassing obsession with the 80's and the cult icons that the decade of delinquency gave birth to.

His life quite literally revolves around movies. When not watching films, he is listening to their soundtracks, and his house has become a veritable shrine to Hollywood, with props, replicas, posters and memorabilia filling all available space.

His long-suffering wife and kids have to put up with his expensive and cringe-worthy attempts to emulate his heroes, from costumes to hairdos, and his ceaseless quest to escape reality and responsibility.
If pushed he would probably cite his favourite films of all time as being Jaws, The Thing, Mad Max 2, The Good, The Bad and The Ugly, Gladiator and Escape From New York … but, like his reviews, the list could go on and on.

CA Milbrandt

CA Milbrandt

Anglophile, wanderer, humanist. Her favourite films are emotional period dramas with strong female leads.

When not in the cinema or dancing to Scottish folk tunes, CA Milbrandt is probably doing something terribly English, like embarking on the quest to make the perfect cup of tea or strolling through the park with her wellies on.

She's also a fan of Russell Howard's... but don't hold that against her.

James Thomas

James Thomas

James joined AVForums early in 2014 and focused on producing content for its gaming hub.

After spending over a decade making games he turned his hand to writing reviews, interviews, and articles for the site.

Kumari Tilakawardane

Kumari Tilakawardane

Kumari developed an unhealthy obsession with The Godfather at much too young an age. Realising she was unlikely to forge a career as a gangster, she turned her attention to the fruitful pastime of studying movies.

She has been reviewing movies for a number of publications over the years, joining AVForums in 2015 and enjoying a more diverse range of movies than ever before.

When she's not watching movies and generally ripping them apart, she enjoys drinking tea, making sarcastic comments and watching sport.

Sharuna Warner

Sharuna Warner

Having developed a love for Science Fiction and Horror at an early age, thanks to Mulder and Scully, Lt Ripley and Mr Myers, Sharuna was keen to learn what else the fictional world had to offer.

Years later and still obsessed with film, she decided to leave her job and pursue an academic path at university to fulfil and fuel her addiction.

Steve Withers

Steve Withers

Steve Withers (@StephenWithers) is a professional calibrator and freelance journalist who regularly contributed to AVForums, reviewing audio and video products, writing articles, appearing on our podcast and presenting numerous videos.

A professional audio and video calibrator who is Level 2 certified with THX, the Imaging Science Foundation (ISF) and the Home Acoustics Alliance (HAA), Steve has been writing about audio and video products for over ten years.

  • Published
    Mar 18, 2014
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