Some musicians think it's neat to hear their music remixed for surround. Others don't give a damn and let their labels do a remix so they can sell a few more albums. But for performance artists turned media stars Blue Man Group, multichannel sound is a matter of musical survival. Blue Man Group founders Matt Goldman, Phil Stanton, and Chris Wink.
I've always been impressed with Sam Runco's familial attitude toward his employees and dealers as well as the consumer-electronics press corps and even the entire industry. This attitude is especially evident during his company's annual spring retreat in Mexico, held this year at the Meliá Cabo Real resort on the Sea of Cortez, halfway between Cabo San Lucas (famous home of Sammy Hagar's Cabo Wabo bar and tequila business) and the lesser-known but much more quaint San Jose del Cabo. Not only does Runco invite his top 10 dealers and a few fortunate journalists, he encourages them to bring their families, stressing the importance of making and maintaining personal connections within the CE community.
<IMG SRC="/images/archivesart/headshot150.sw.jpg" WIDTH=150 HEIGHT=200 HSPACE=6 VSPACE=4 BORDER=0 ALIGN=RIGHT>A number of years ago, broadcasters started displaying their logo as a semi-translucent image in the bottom right corner of the screen. I find this very distracting, but I suppose it was inevitable; as the number of channels on most cable and satellite systems increases, it becomes harder and harder to remember what channel you're watching. And don't forget the anti-piracy aspect of these logos.
Sharp's XV-Z2000 front DLP projector raised more than a few eyebrows when it first appeared at CEDIA Expo 2004. Was this indeed the first 1280x720 HD2+ DLP projector for less than $5000? If so, it would represent a seismic but long overdue change in DLP projector pricing, which has typically kept the MSRPs of 720p models above $7000—and, by extension, non-competitive with 720p LCD projectors that retail for half of that price or less.
QuickMotion. SmartShutter. Dark Detailer. Plush Imaging. Plush720p. Plush1080p. DeepField Imager. SharpEdge. Buzzwords were flying faster than you could swat them at Mitsubishi's April 2005 line show in Orlando, Florida. Journalists were flown in from all over the US to view the latest Mitsubishi televisions, loaded with these exciting—or at least exciting <I>sounding</I>—features.
The entrance of computer companies like Dell and Hewlett-Packard into the HT space has raised a few eyebrows. Will the computer giants drive home theater prices down into the realm of computer componentry or, instead, drive themselves out of the HT arena?
By the time you read this, Samsung's claim that their 46-inch LTP468W is the largest LCD flat-panel TV with 1080p capability will surely have been broken, perhaps by Samsung themselves. In the frenetic flat-panel HDTV category, new models seemingly appear in stores on a monthly—nay, weekly—basis. Samsung is chasing the flat-panel crown with a slew of offerings, in both the LCD and plasma categories, wowing visitors to their CES 2005 booth with dozens of new models, including a 102-inch behemoth.
Plug in your cable feed and kiss that box goodbye.
I decanted Hitachi's 32HDL51 as though it were a vintage wine—delicately, so as not to stir up the sediment. I didn't want to lose a single one of its 1,049,088 pixels. This 32-incher converts all incoming signals to its native resolution, 1366 by 768, but processes video in the ultra-high-res 1080p format.
What if you could put your home theater (virtually) anywhere?
Simply put, Belkin's PureAV RemoteTV accepts the output of any NTSC video source, converts that analog audio/video signal to MPEG-2, and sends it wirelessly to a display device in another location, in better quality than is possible from similar devices. It essentially eliminates the need for a second source component—not just the hardware, but any related service, as well. Already have a single TV/DVD setup but want to enjoy programming in another room? Want to keep an eye on what someone else is watching or be sure to get your money's worth by displaying your pay-per-view movie on two different TVs? This is the way.
Since the arrival of the DVD recorder several years ago, reviewer types have speculated about just what would have to take place for the DVD recorder to gain mass acceptance and replace the VCR in people's homes. Obviously, price needed to drop way below the original four-figure mark, but what else? Ease of use? Naturally, but how easy is easy? Features? Maybe. VCRs aren't exactly feature-laden themselves, but that doesn't stop everyone from owning one.