New Products - Dec. 2001

Sherwood With built-in bass management for its multichannel analog inputs, the Sherwood Newcastle R-963 may be the first digital surround receiver that's truly ready for the DVD-Audio and Super Audio CD formats. It can decode 6.1-channel Dolby Digital Surround EX and DTS-ES Matrix and Discrete soundtracks as well as regular 5.1-channel soundtracks, and with Dolby Pro Logic II, it can derive 5.1 channels from two-channel material. The R-963 is rated to deliver up to 120 watts each into 8 ohms to seven speakers. The two wideband component-video inputs can handle high-definition TV (HDTV) signals, and there are five composite/S-video inputs. You can feed digital audio through four optical and two coaxial inputs. A universal remote control with an LCD screen is supplied. Price: $2,000., 800-962-3203

Zenith The next time you have a delayed flight, try escaping to your own world with a portable DVD player like Zenith's DVP7771. Its 7-inch (diagonal) widescreen LCD will look big in a cramped seat, and virtual surround sound in your headphones will immerse you in the movie. It can also play CDs, CD-Rs, CD-RWs, and discs with MP3 files. There's a 20-track program memory and 16x zoom. Composite- and S-video outputs as well as coaxial and optical digital audio outputs let you use the player in your home theater with the help of its card-size remote control. The DVP7771 measures 17 x 3 3/4 x 14 inches and weighs 4 3/4 pounds. Price: $900., 847-391-7000

Boston Acoustics Leading Boston Acoustics' VR-M Reference speaker line is the VR-M90, which stands 371/4 inches tall. The ported speaker, with dual 6 1/2-inch woofers and a 1-inch aluminum-dome tweeter, is rated for a frequency response of 37 Hz to 20 kHz ±3 dB and sensitivity of 90 dB. The port is flared on both ends to reduce noise, a vertical brace helps minimize cabinet resonances, and magnetic shielding prevents interference with TVs. Finished in cherry veneer, the VR-M90 has a footprint of 91/4 x 14 inches and weighs 65 pounds. Price: $2,700 a pair., 978-538-5000

Panasonic Though it looks like a widescreen computer monitor, Panasonic's 7-inch-thick TC-11LV1 is really a desktop television with a built-in progressive-scan DVD player. The 16:9 aspect ratio LCD screen measures 11 inches (diagonal) and has an 854 x 480-pixel resolution. The display automatically adjusts its brightness according to the ambient light. The set can accept signals fed to its component-video input from an external digital TV tuner, and standard 480i (interlaced) video from its built-in tuner is line doubled for display in 480p (progressive) format. The player has a built-in Dolby Digital decoder and an optical digital audio output. A full-function remote control is supplied. Price: $1,600., 800-211-7262