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CES 2010

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Mark Fleischmann Posted: Jan 08, 2010 2 comments
Achromatic is the name of a new line from the venerable (and underrated) Anglo-Chinese brand Wharfedale. In addition to the $399 sat/sub set, the line also includes towers, monitors, and subs. The existing Evo2 ($600-1900, shown) and Opus2 ($1700-5000) lines have been beefed up with aluminum-coated copper wire for better heat dispersion. They continue to have kevlar woofers and soft dome tweeters.
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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 08, 2010 0 comments
NewKinetix Re (the e is supposed to have a line over it, but I don't know how to generate that character - basically because I'm alphabetically challenged) is a plug-in accessory for an iPhone or iPod touch that turns either device into an IR remote control. Other such IR-enabling products already exist, but as far as I can tell the NewKintetix unit is the first one that does not require a separate box to generate the IR signal. One can be yours soon for $49.95.
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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 08, 2010 0 comments
I always like going to the NXT suite during CES to see what new things they've cooked up. The three-room suite is filled with a variety of current, brand new, and concept products utilizing NXT's slim and flat transducer technologies. One of the most interesting items was a 2.1 flat-panel TV add-on speaker system from Q Acoustics. The Q-TV2 attaches to the rear of the TV chassis and can be used whether the set is on a stand or wall-mounted. The subwoofer is around an inch thick, and the slender side speakers are mounted on arms that can be adjusted to match the width of the TV. The system accepts analog or digital audio from the TV and has boundary compensation circuitry for use when the system is up against a wall.
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Tom Norton Posted: Jan 07, 2010 0 comments
If I tried to list all the new Samsung HDTVs launched at the show I'd go blind, so with deference to those who say I already am, and in the interests of my being still able to review a few of them later this year, I'll hit the highlights. With a full, new lineup of HDTVs (LED sidelit LCDs, conventional CCFL—fluorescent—backlit LCDs, and plasmas), new BD players with faster claimed booting and loading times, and three complete BD audio systems, Samsung is ready for the 2010 retail wars.
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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 07, 2010 0 comments
So, I was just thinking the other day, "If only I had X-ray vision for my cell phone camera."
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Tom Norton Posted: Jan 07, 2010 0 comments
Sharp's big announcement, apart from listing of their new models, was Quad Pixel Technology. Instead of the usual red, green, and blue sub-pixels that make up each pixel in the LCD image, Sharp adds a fourth, yellow-filtered sub-pixel. This is said to increase the number of colors up to 1 trillion. But who's counting?
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Mark Fleischmann Posted: Jan 07, 2010 0 comments
The Zeppelin now has a little sister, the Mini Zeppelin, and it offers a new feature: PC streaming via USB. The iPod dock swivels so your touch or iPhone can be used vertically or horizontally. Unlike the original Zep, which could dominate a large room, the Mini Zep is designed for more intimate spaces. Price $399.
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Mark Fleischmann Posted: Jan 07, 2010 0 comments
How do we know that? Because these prototypes were labeled Premium Speakers. Looks like they'll include a three-way, four-driver tower, a three-way center, smaller surrounds, and a pretty substantial and handsome sub with rounded hardwood side panels. The orchestral music trying to be heard above the hubbub of the show floor was as pleasing as anything could be under such circumstances.
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Tom Norton Posted: Jan 07, 2010 0 comments
I don't want to hear any post-show moaning about low attendance at this year's CES. They were dangling from the rafters at LG's positively immense booth.
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Mark Fleischmann Posted: Jan 07, 2010 1 comments
You think being a member of the press is a swanky existence? Banish all such thoughts from your mind. When I attended my first CES in 1985, a few people who knew each other had convivial hot lunches in the press room and everyone was guaranteed a seat. The proliferation of bloggers now has people sitting on the floor eating box lunches and most of them are strangers to one another.
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Tom Norton Posted: Jan 07, 2010 0 comments
The audience is all ears listening to the flagship home theater system from Swans (more below), via Arcadia of California via Hi-Vi in China. For those who are interested, they were listening to Yanni Live at Mandalay Bay on a multichannel DVD.
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Mark Fleischmann Posted: Jan 07, 2010 0 comments
Sennheiser's RS170 headphones are full-sized, wireless, and surround-savvy -- the latter coming in the form of a proprietary, not licensed, technology. The company's previous surround products had used adaptation technology licensed from SRS. Price $150.
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Tom Norton Posted: Jan 07, 2010 1 comments
A few years back the maker of Energy and Mirage speakers, Audio Products International, was bought by Klipsch. Then a company celled Gentec International gobbled up all three brands. Unfortunately, Energy and Mirage went through the succeeding years with little new of interest to the serious audiophile. A shame, because the Energy Veritas v2.8 from 1994 remains one of my all time favorite (and underappreciated speakers). I still own a pair and although they were never ready for home theater (a matching center channel was never made for the original Veritas'). I break them out every time I need a (still excellent) 2-channel referenced. That's not often these days, but as little as time as they get in my listening room they aren't going anywhere.
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Mark Fleischmann Posted: Jan 07, 2010 0 comments
These massage chairs from Weightec use lighted, moving symbols to let you know what kind of massage you're going to get. We like the one with the little footprints at far right. It will free up children, pygmies, and monkeys for other kinds of work.
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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 07, 2010 0 comments
From the same booth offering X-ray vision for your cell phone camera. I like the fact that handcuffs are one of the items you'll learn how to pick.

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