CES 2011

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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Jan 07, 2010 0 comments

I was excited to visit Electrocompaniet and see its new Maestro, an all-singing, all-dancing source component with Blu-ray player, FM tuner, Internet radio, iPod dock, and media streaming with three channels of 120W, all for $8000. You can also get a wireless 2-channel amp for the rear speakers for an extra $2000. Unfortunately, it was experiencing some technical difficulties, so there was nothing to see or hear, but I was told that the Norwegian engineers are working around the clock to update the software before the end of the show.

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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Jan 07, 2010 0 comments

Like Panasonic, Sony is involved in every aspect of 3D, from cameras to displays. At its press conference, the company announced its partnership with the Discovery Channel and Imax to launch a 3D network in 2011. Sony is also sponsoring ESPN's new 3D channel, which is planning to broadcast 85 events in its first year.

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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Jan 07, 2010 0 comments

Samsung introduced a bunch of new TVs at its press conference, but they were turned off before I could get some photos, so I'll have to wait until I can shoot them in the booth to tell you about them. Meanwhile, I can say that Samsung is bullish on 3D, partnering with DreamWorks and Technicolor to get content to consumers as quickly as possible. DreamWorks CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg, shown here on the right with Tim Baxter, president of the Consumer Electronics Division of Samsung Electronics America, made a guest appearance to talk about the importance of 3D and deliver a copy of the world's first 3D Blu-ray, <I>Monsters vs. Aliens</I>, to Baxter.

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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Jan 07, 2010 0 comments

LG's super-slim prototype caused a stir at the company's press conference. Even with LED backlighting and local dimming (with 240 dimming zones, over twice as many as most such sets), this panel measures only 6.9mm thick&#151;that's about a quarter of an inch! This thing doesn't even have a model designation yet, so don't expect it in stores any time soon, but it sure is cool.

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Tom Norton Posted: Jan 06, 2010 Published: Jan 07, 2010 2 comments

Toshiba's big announcement concerned the incorporation of the advanced Cell processor into selected models of its new, 2010 Cell series of HDTVs. The Cell was developed by Toshiba but is best known up to now as the brains in Sony's PlayStation3.

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Tom Norton Posted: Jan 06, 2010 Published: Jan 07, 2010 1 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&#151;fluorescent&#151;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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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Jan 07, 2010 0 comments

The Prelude BD-1 is Electrocompaniet's new "entry-level" Blu-ray player at $3000. It provides two balanced analog-audio outputs as well as 7.1 single-ended outputs.

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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Jan 07, 2010 1 comments

Swedish speaker maker Perfect8 assembled a 2-channel rig in its Venetian suite that would set you back a cool $1,000,000! Aside from the speakers, which include a pair of Forces and three Cubes with powered subwoofers, the system includes electronics from Ypsilon, an Audio Stone Pythagoras turntable, and ZenSati cables. I heard a recording of cello and pipe organ, which was spectacular—a beautiful, open sound and great bass response. For more on the Perfect8 speakers, <A href="http://blog.ultimateavmag.com/ultimate-gear/eight_is_enough/">click here</A>.

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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Jan 07, 2010 0 comments

First announced at CEDIA in September, the AVR500 is a stripped down version of the AVR600 with no preamp outs, no phono input, and two sub outs instead of three. It provides 100Wpc of Class AB power and uses a Pixelworks video processor for $3800.

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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Jan 07, 2010 4 comments

Panasonic's press conference started with a 2-way video feed from Fumio Ohtsubo, president of Panasonic Corporation, live from Osaka, Japan, via the company's new Internet-based HD Visual Communication System. The huge projected image was exceptionally clear, detailed, colorful, and smooth, though there was a short but inevitable delay as Ohtsubo chatted with members of the Panasonic staff in the room.

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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Jan 07, 2010 1 comments

Toshiba's big announcement was the introduction into the US market of its Cell TV, first seen in a "soft launch" last year. This flagship sits at the pinnacle of a new lineup that includes 10 series of LCD TVs, seven of which are LED illuminated. Thanks to the incredibly powerful Cell processor in its outboard box, the Cell TV has it all, including LED local dimming with 512 zones (five times as many as most current local dimmers), 3D capabilities (including real-time conversion of 2D to 3D) using active-shutter glasses, 480Hz refresh rate (actually 240Hz with backlight scanning), WirelessHD 60GHz (wireless HDMI) and 802.11n WiFi connectivity, VoIP video-phone capability, and Super Resolution+ and Net Resolution+ video processing, which upscale SD images and clean up low-res Web video, respectively.

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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Jan 04, 2010 0 comments

We will be reporting live from the show floor.

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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Jan 04, 2010 20 comments

Now that the holidays are over&#151;which, frankly, I was ready for days ago&#151;it's time to turn an expectant eye toward Las Vegas and CES. Unlike many of my colleagues, I love going to the show, and this year is no exception. As usual, I'll be driving from Los Angeles, and I'm really looking forward to cruising through the beautiful desert landscape in a Lincoln MKZ with a kick-ass sound system courtesy of THX.

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