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CEDIA 2009

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Shane Buettner Posted: Sep 13, 2009 0 comments
This is one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen. Chord Electronics’ Chordette Gem is a really cool USB DAC. But as cool as that is, that’s not even what’s coolest about it. Have an iPod Touch or iPhone? Yeah, me too. I opened my iPhone's BlueTooth settings and saw the Chordette right away and paired it with a 4-digit code expertly supplied by Sumiko’s Norbert Schmied (granted, it was the 1-2-3-4 default, but my man was all over it). Right away I was playing tunes through the stereo speaker system connected to the Chordette over BlueTooth (and Light Sabers, Star Trek phasers, and other, um, iPhone app related sound effects, some of which may have been regarded as unsavory). We don’t need no stinking white cables! $799 and you’re living the dream!
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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Sep 13, 2009 0 comments
Mark's already mentioned in a previous post American Recorder Technologies' speaker package that comes with a laser alignment tool, but you can buy the laser tool - plus a fancy sound pressure level meter - in a cool, aluminum carrying case from ART for $249. It's overkill for the one-time HTiB setup, but anyone who is into home theater enough to be reading our blogs about CEDIA will want one of these packages. If you're really serious about setting up home theaters - as in, you're an installer or would like to be - the Basic Home Theater Kit is just a start. Other professionally oriented kits include digital inclinometers, laser line generators (for visualizing dispersion patterns), and laser alignment glasses.
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Shane Buettner Posted: Sep 13, 2009 0 comments
Home theater or digital cinema at home? Wolf Cinema’s DLP digital projectors blur the line. The biggest, baddest Wolfs (Wolves?) are three-chip DLP projectors with full 1080p resolution, constant screen height, and scalable light output configurations for a wide variety of screen sizes, materials and lighting conditions- including very large screens. They are custom install centric in that they run hot and require professional installation and ventilation. Wolf Cinema’s distributor seems open to getting us a review sample, so it looks like I might get to take this Ferrari for a drive!
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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Sep 13, 2009 84 comments
Walking around CEDIA, you'll see tools you never knew existed designed to solve problems you never knew anyone ever had. Although I've always believed that (1) you should always use the right tool for the right job,(2) you can never have enough tools, and (3) battery/electric tools are always better than ones that require my own muscle power; there are some tools on display here that even I can't justify having at home. My wife will probably say I have a hole in my head when I say I need this tool, but I can't help wanting the awesome Hole Pro Adjustable Hole Cutter drill attachment. It's capable of cutting smooth holes in all kinds of materials (dry wall, plywood, even some metal). But wait - there's more! As the name implies, it's adjustable; so this one tool can be used to drill anything from a 1 7/8-inch hole to a 17-inch hole. And the clear plastic housing not only catches all the dust and debris as you're cutting - it also serves as a support housing that makes sure you drill the hole perpendicular to the plain of the surface you're cutting. A built-in depth gauge prevents you from drilling too far into your wall and into a water pipe or speaker wire. Models range from $119.95 to $164.95 depending on the maximum size hole the tool will cut. Check out the videos of the Hole Pro in action at the company's web site www.holepro.com.
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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Sep 13, 2009 0 comments
Perhaps it would have been more appropriate to introduce this hip-swinging HDMI adapter at Las Vegas, but NextGen brought the company's twisting, rotating, 360-degree HDMI connector to the sparsely attended Hall B in the Convention Center. While there was plenty of room there, this connector will make it easier to hook up HDMI gear when space is tight. Pricing is TBD (which is "to be determined" not "two billion dollars"). If it's like the rest of NextGen's products, it'll be surprisingly inexpensive and will work exceedingly well.
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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Sep 13, 2009 0 comments
I really shouldn't make fun of this because there can be some serious math work involved in putting together a complicated whole-house A/V and automation system, but I couldn't help chuckle at the title of this CEDIA University course being offered for installers and designers. Maybe CEDIA should have picked a more impressive name for this course, something like "Beyond Fingers: Why a Calculator Should be in Your Toolbox" or "Mathematical Profitability: Making Cents out of Numbers".
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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Sep 12, 2009 4 comments

I already blogged about the Lexicon BD-30 universal Blu-ray player, but no one outside the company knew before the show that it has received THX certification. At the Lexicon booth, I also learned that it can decode DVD-Audio and SACD and send multichannel PCM via HDMI, a great feature in this $3500 player. The BD-30 is pictured here with the MC-12HD pre/pro, which just received a firmware update that lets it accept a 7.1-channel PCM bitstream from Blu-rays that offer it—the previous version was limited to 5.1 PCM.

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Shane Buettner Posted: Sep 12, 2009 0 comments
Leon speakers are all about audio- audio for your video. The company custom builds speakers around video displays of all kinds, there is nothing off the shelf about any Leon system. On display at CEDIA was this whopping 140” wide Stewart CineCurve screen (that’s almost 12 feet wide for those of you keeping score at home!) with accustom built Leon speaker system tracing the screen. I'm cheating calling it a soundbar, but I don't know what else to call it and I'm lazy. I don’t know how much the speakers cost, but if you can afford a CineCurve that size, and a projector to drive it, you don’t care!
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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Sep 11, 2009 Published: Sep 12, 2009 0 comments

At the end of the day, I stopped by the Digital Projection booth to see its new offerings, which I blogged about before the show. The M-Vision Cine LED was being compared with an iVision 30 lamp-based projector on adjacent screens, and while the iVision was brighter, even on a larger screen, the Cine LED exhibited better color saturation. In another part of the booth, the HighLite 3-chip DLP looked great, with excellent color and detail.

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Tom Norton Posted: Sep 12, 2009 3 comments
We reported on the news Revel subs in our pre-CEDIA entries, but nothing in the photo there gave an idea of the size of the Revel Ultima Rhythm2, shown here with Revel's Kevin Voecks. This 225 lb. monster will also sell for $10,000 when it debuts later this year.
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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Sep 11, 2009 Published: Sep 12, 2009 1 comments

I've seen demos of Dolby's HDR (High Dynamic Range) LED local-dimming technology for LCD TVs for over a year, but it's finally about to be released in a real product from SIM2. The Solar 47 is a 47-inch, 1080p LCD TV with 2206 white LEDs arrayed behind the imaging panel, and unlike other local-dimming sets, each LED is individually addressable. It should be available by the end of the year for—get this—$25,000. Sure, it looks great, but 25 grand for a 47-inch LCD? Yikes!

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Tom Norton Posted: Sep 11, 2009 Published: Sep 12, 2009 0 comments
Samsung wasn't showing much new that we hadn't seen or reported on before, but one new introduction was the LN 65B650 65" LCD HDTV. Nothing 2010 cutting edge here--no LEDs, no local dimming, just straight engineering with a claimed peak contrast ratio of 100,000:1, online TV widgets, 120Hz features, fast 4ms response time, Energy Star compliance, and more. $6000, available now.
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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Sep 12, 2009 0 comments

I didn't include a post about the XBR10 series of LCD TVs with the rest of the products from the Sony press conference on Wednesday because it was not active, and photo of a blank screen is boring. This 240Hz LCD uses LED edge lighting, which allows it to be very thin but precludes local dimming. It also provides widgets and access to online streaming content, and an outboard box transmits 1080p wirelessly to the set. It will be available next month in 46- and 52-inch screen sizes; pricing was not disclosed.

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Shane Buettner Posted: Sep 12, 2009 1 comments
Adam speakers are well known in the pro audio world, and better in Europe. But they are crossing the seas and making a splash in the home audio/video market. I auditioned the high-end Tensor line in a two-channel setup but the company is preparing for US launch a diverse line of home theater and in-wall/on-wall speakers. The sound I heard was preternaturally clean, dynamic and rhythmically right. They’re coming.
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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Sep 12, 2009 1 comments

The newest addition to Samsung's stable of LCD TVs is the LN65B650, a 65-inch monster with conventional backlighting that will list for $6000. Of particular note is a picture mode called BD-Wise, which is found on select 2009 TVs and all of the company's '09 Blu-ray players. BD-Wise lets the TV and Blu-ray player communicate and automatically set their parameters depending on the content. A satellite feed looked quite bad with lots of artifacts, but Blu-ray looked <I>much</I> better.

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