50 Greatest A/V Innovations Page 5


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28. Front Projection It was just a short step from integrated projection systems like the Advent to theater-like systems with screen and projector completely separated, and the development of compact, affordable LCD, DLP, and LCoS projectors has made this approach increasingly popular.

29. LCDs First developed in the early 1960s, liquid-crystal displays have grown to play a large role in A/V systems, in everything from remote controls to video projectors and flat-panel TVs.

30. Megachangers The original media servers, megachangers with 100-disc or greater capacity gave users a taste of the benefits of content consolidation.

31. Digital Satellite TV Going boldly where no cable had found its way, the launch of the small-dish DSS (now DirecTV) satellite-TV service in 1994 was a boon to rural areas underserved by cable and the beginning of spirited competition in others.

32. Powered Subwoofers First developed in the 1960s (by Ken Kreisel, later of M&K Sound) and popularized in the 1980s, the self-powered subwoofer has been a key element in the success and growth of home theater.

33.High-performance In-Wall Speakers It all started in the 1980s, with people putting two-way a/d/s/ car speakers into walls. The subsequent explosion of in-wall speakers designed for the home has been a blessing to high-quality distributed audio and home theater - not to mention interior decorators.

34. Laserdisc Bulky, clumsy, and never very popular, laserdisc (introduced in 1978) nonetheless carried the torch for better-than-VHS video and cut the trail for its eventual blockbuster successor, DVD. Companies like the Criterion Collection created elaborate LD packages, complete with commentaries and extras, that laid the groundwork for DVD special editions.