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Thomas J. Norton

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Thomas J. Norton Posted: Jan 08, 2011 Published: Jan 09, 2011 0 comments
At $700/pair, PSB's Imagine Mini (second from left, on stand) may turn some heads. It did not have any deep bass, but was clean as far down as it went, and even when played loud (though not unreasonably loud) did not fall to pieces. With a good subwoofer, five of them plus a spare (unfortunately they are sold only in pairs), or four with an Imagine center, could make for a sweet, small room home theater setup.
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Thomas J. Norton Posted: Jan 08, 2011 Published: Jan 09, 2011 0 comments
Quality home theater demos were thin on the ground anywhere at CES, but particularly rare in the Venetian hotel. This is the venue for high performance audio, which for far too many audiophiles does not leave room for either multichannel music or any combination of audio and video. But the Wolf Cinema room was an exception, combining the $25,000 Wolf DCL-200FD LED-lit DLP projector with an ISCO anamorphic lens ($10,000) on a 120" wide, 2.35:1 screen. The latter was said to be a 1.4-gain Screen Innovations design, but I need to check up on that, as the only 1.4-gain screen listed in SI's brochure is the dark gray, Black Diamond HD. The speakers were from the Sonus Faber Toy series, together with three T-1 REL subwoofers. The result was exceptional video and audio, even if the former cost several times the latter. The pre-pro was a Primare, no longer distributed in the US by Sumiko (Sumiko distributes Wolf projectors).
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Thomas J. Norton Posted: Jan 08, 2011 Published: Jan 09, 2011 0 comments
Dan D'Agostino Master Audio Systems showed its new $42,000/pair Momentum monoblock amps, shown here with the Wilson Audio Sashas, dCS Puccini SACD playback system, Weiss Firewire to coaxial digital converter, and high-rez music from a Mac laptop that together teamed up with them to produce one of the best sounding rooms at the show.
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Thomas J. Norton Posted: Jan 08, 2011 Published: Jan 09, 2011 0 comments
If you look at the back of NAD's new T787 AV Surround Sound Receiver ($3499) you'll see the plug-in modules that make the 120 WPC x 7 unit amenable to future upgrading. As delivered it includes the latest digital video, HDMI, and audio modules. A Control4 Director Series Module is an option. The T187 AV Preamp Processor ($2499) is similarly equipped.
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Thomas J. Norton Posted: Jan 08, 2011 Published: Jan 09, 2011 0 comments
YG Acoustics brought along a truckload of acoustic panels to make certain that the hotel meeting room's acoustics weren't wreaking havoc with the sound of its expensive, aluminum cabineted speakers.
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Thomas J. Norton Posted: Jan 08, 2011 Published: Jan 09, 2011 0 comments
The NuForce Icon HDP is a low distortion headphone amp, a high resolution DAC with optical, coaxial, and USB Type B inputs, analog RCA outputs, and a full size stereo headphone output. $449.
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Thomas J. Norton Posted: Jan 08, 2011 Published: Jan 09, 2011 0 comments
From Alfred and Partners comes the Estelon, a uniquely shaped speaker with all Accuton ceramic drivers. All yours for just $43,000/pair.
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Thomas J. Norton Posted: Jan 08, 2011 Published: Jan 09, 2011 0 comments
I heard the Fat Lady Sing, and she was in fine voice. The Fat Lady is a floor-stander from Morel of Israel, where the name apparently is politically incorrect. I have to admit that it's descriptive of the cabinet, which is designed to sing along with the speaker and stop short of coloring the sound.
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Thomas J. Norton Posted: Jan 08, 2011 0 comments
With several manufacturers showing new 3DTV sets using passive rather than active glasses, Samsung took pains to point out the pros and cons of each device. Naturally, since Samsung does active glasses only at present, the pros outweighed the cons for the active glasses. Note some surprising items on the passive glasses list in the photo. The higher power consumption comes from the need for higher peak output to overcome the inherent loss of brightness with passive glasses due to the special patterned retarder filter that's used on the screen. And Samsung actually demonstrated the off-axis issues in a passive glasses set during a closed demonstration for the press. As always, however, the proof is in the reviewing and we're anxious to check out the new passive glasses sets for ourselves and come to our own conclusions.

With several manufacturers showing new 3DTV sets using passive rather than active glasses, Samsung took pains to point out the pros and cons of each device. Naturally, since Samsung does active glasses only at present, the pros outweighed the cons for the active glasses. Note some surprising items on the passive glasses list in the photo. The higher power consumption comes from the need for higher peak output to overcome the inherent loss of brightness with passive glasses due to the special patterned retarder filter that's used on the screen. And Samsung actually demonstrated the off-axis issues in a passive glasses set during a closed demonstration for the press. As always, however, the proof is in the reviewing and we're anxious to check out the new passive glasses sets for ourselves and come to our own conclusions.

Samsung also showed new, redesigned active glasses for its new 2011 3D sets.

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Thomas J. Norton Posted: Jan 08, 2011 0 comments
These ultra-slim 21.5-inch 2D monitors from LG are 1920 x 1080, with a claimed response time of 2ms and contrast ratio of 10M:1, and D-sub (computer RGB), DVI,and HDMI inputs.

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