The EPIC2 and two other models are the first Epos speakers to use soft dome tweeters along with, in this case, a seven-inch polypropylene woofer. For a front treatment, choose a screwless baffle plate, or a grille. The dealer can switch between them by sticking a metal rod into the back of the speaker and pushing off whichever one you don't want. Price is $799/pair for the EPIC2, $599/pair for the slightly smaller EPIC1, and $1399/pair for the EPIC5 tower.
With the cute musicBox desktop amp and iDAC on display, both featuring pure digital iPod docks and selling for about a grand, Peachtree Audio's David Solomon has a lot to talk about. But the theme he is most passionate about is Apple TV. Videophiles see it as a 720p-limited video streamer. But to Solomon, it's a $99 audio streamer that "could save our industry." He says that if the audio industry doesn't get on board with the way music lovers choose to listen today, it will slowly evaporate, as those listeners gravitate to audio products sold at computer hardware stores.
And here's what it does, according to the carton. Note that the iPod streaming includes component and composite video, the former using a proprietary jack and dongle that physically resembles S-video with more pins.
Sonawall’s Spodak UW-200 system is an add-on to any surround system that’s designed to move the focal point of the sound up to where the TV image is. The system includes a pair of tiny on-wall pod speakers and a special crossover that lets you fine tune the blend of the pod speakers with the rest of your system. MSRP is $350 for the system. The company also makes a 5.1-channel system ($800) and a 2.1-channel desktop system ($500) using the same pod speakers and a subwoofer.
Definitive Technology showed off the company’s some of the company’s new speakers that will be introduced over the next nine months. First among them is a new Mythos 7.1 soundbar that sounds as good with two-channel music as it does with multi-channel content. Other intros will include new subwoofers that are smaller than the current models and offer an optional wireless adapter, new bookshelf speakers, and later in the year, an active soundbar with a wireless subwoofer.
Denon and Marantz are the first non-Apple manufacturers to incorporate AirPlay audio streaming without the use of an AirPort Express device. An AirPlay logo appears on your iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch (running iOS 4.2 and up). Press it and a drop-down list of compatible devices appears. Thus you can take music from an Apple mobile device, or a PC or Mac running iTunes, and stream it hither and yon to your Denon/Marantz toys. The capability is built into four Denon a/v receivers -- the AVR-4311CI, -3311CI, -991, and -A100 100th anniversary model -- plus the N7 tabletop system. Also on board are Marantz products: the SR7005 receiver, AV7005 pre-pro, NA7004 network audio player, and M-CR603 network CD receiver. You can get the software upgrade for $50 two days from the publication of this item. (Photo: Lisa Cazzola.)
LG demonstrated the 3D LCoS projector we've seen at a couple of previous shows. The CF3D was unfortunately no better than before. This time the issues were a very slight image softness and, more importantly, a badly skewed white balance. Skin tones looked painfully sunburned. Hopefully this can be calibrated out, the if any effort was made to produce a semblance of accurate color here it did not show.I left after about five minutes as the image was uncomfortable to watch.
Greensound Technology unveiled a line of three speakers and a subwoofer made of glass. The speakers are said to produce sound from 70 Hz to around 17 kHz. Round holes strategically cut into the glass cause the upper frequencies to be emitted by the upper portion of the glass panel with the lower frequencies emanating from the lower region. Pricing ranges from $4,000 to $19,000/pair.
The Intrepid II, in lower right corner, is Theta Digital's first Class D amp, at 7 times 150 watts. It is expected to go into production in four months. Class D amplification, in general, is more energy efficient though some audiophiles question whether it is ready for primetime. Theta's implementation will boast load-agnostic frequency response regardless of speaker impedance. At upper left is the Theta III HD pre-pro, at $19,995 for version with Xtreme DACs and a mere $14,999 for version with Premium DACs. Upgrade your old Casablanca III for $4995 and your old Casablanca I or II for $5000. Apologies for awful pic.
The McIntosh MCLK12 clock puts the signature power meters to new use, displaying hours at left and minutes at right. It can mount in an equipment rack but why not give it a more prominent place on your wall?
Watch out, Google TV. Fanhattan is a new service scheduled to launch in early 2011 that uses a very simple and easy-to-use UI to let you surf the world of video entertainment. It not only makes it easy to find the TV shows and movies you want to watch – it also lists the various services that provide that content and the prices charged (in the case of movies, for instance). Fanhattan will also provide a bunch of options having to do with the main content, such as related movie synopsis, bios, and YouTube videos.
Arcam is one of those legendary "low end of the high end" amp makers that traditionally "punches above its weight," if you'll forgive the use of two audio-reviewing cliches in one sentence. Now it's in the iThing docking system business with the rCube ($800), shipping now.