Photos by Tony Cordoza The Pioneer Elite ES-DV1000 will grab your eyes as much as the DVD movies it plays will. Its sophisticated electronics are hidden inside a beguilingly simple and elegant brushed-aluminum and gray cabinet.
The forces competing to win the prize of the next-generation DVD - the disc that will carry high-definition movies and other HD content - squared off with competing press conferences on the first day of the 2005 International Consumer Electronics Show. As in exhibition sports, they played real ball, but the score counted little toward the championship.
Seldom unseen yet ubiquitous at CES are batteries. Last year Panasonic debuted its Oxyride non-rechargeable batteries. This year was Sanyo's turn to deliver an improvement on nickel-metal hydride batteries. Its new Eneloop batteries come fully charged, meaning you don't have to charge them for hours before using them.
I live in Illinois near a town called Flatville. The buzz at this year's Consumer Electronics Show might lead you to believe that it's the capital of the universe. On Press Day, January 5, the day prior to the official opening of CES, every major manufacturer introduced myriad models of new flat-panel displays, which in the not-too-distant past were called TVs.
Sony concluded the press day preceding the official opening of CES with a press conference that lined up reporters and writers waiting for admittance for almost a city block. The display area was filled way beyond capacity. Fortunately, Sony Electronics President Fujio Nashida kept his remarks brief, focusing on the company's overall strategy rather than a laundry list of new products.
What can you get from a single box not much larger than a DVD player with three small drivers firing forward and a woofer port firing rearward? If the box is the Zvox 315 Sound Console, you get more sound than you might think - full, wide stereo and a surprising amount of surround sound.
There's no question that the sophistication of today's home theater - with anywhere from six to eight speakers - can take a toll on your décor. And if you're putting together a serious system, chances are you won't be able to simply unpack your new gear and enjoy a movie the same night without some help.