November 2017 New Gear Part 2

Yamaha YAS-207 DTS Virtual:X Soundbar
DTS has an answer to Dolby Atmos–enabled soundbars: It’s called DTS Virtual:X, and it recently debuted in Yamaha’s YAS-207 soundbar. The “post-processing virtualization technology” simulates an immersive surround sound experience with effects that move around and above the listener without the need for additional speakers. DTS says it works with any stereo or multi-channel content (up to 7.1.4/11.1 channels).
The Upside: Unlike Dolby Atmos-enabled soundbars that have upward-firing drivers, the YAS-207 has a conventional layout with six forward-facing drivers—four small woofers and two tweeters—in a low-profile enclosure only 2.4 inches tall. The soundbar supports Bluetooth streaming, 4K/high dynamic range (HDR) passthrough at up to 60 frames per second, and is equipped with analog and optical digital inputs as well as an HDMI input/output with audio return. A wireless subwoofer is included. Price: $300

Yamaha • (714) 522-9105 •


Pioneer Elite VSX-LX302 A/V Receiver
We tend to think of the Elite nameplate as reserved for the very best AVRs Pioneer has to offer. While that’s true, the line also includes the moderately priced VSX-LX302, which provides everything you need for a respectable home entertainment rig: 7 x 100 watts of power, Dolby Atmos and DTS:X surround processing (for 5.2.2 setups), support for 4K/60p video with HDCP 2.2 copy protection, high dynamic range passthrough for HDR10 and Dolby Vision, and hi-res audio capability (192-kHz/24-bit and DSD 2.8-megahertz/5.6-MHz).
Feature Parade: The list continues with 4K upscaling, Pioneer’s MCACC auto calibration system, and a “reflex optimizer” that improves localization in setups using Dolby Atmos–enabled speakers. Networking and streaming are supported through Chromecast built in, AirPlay, DTS Play-Fi (via a firmware update) with onboard apps for Spotify, Tidal, TuneIn internet radio, and Deezer. Price: $799

Pioneer • (844) 679-5350 •


Bryston BP-17³ Preamp
The pursuit of audio perfection makes new strides in the BP-17³ stereo preamp from Canada’s Bryston Ltd. At its core is a patented low-noise input buffer developed with noted amp designer, the late Dr. Ioan Alexandru Salomie. In addition to reduced noise and distortion, the preamp boasts improved noise filtering to prevent unwanted power-line anomalies from interfering with the audio signal.
Flexible Flyer: Stereo connectivity options include two balanced inputs, five RCA inputs, two RCA outputs, and two XLR outputs, one of which can be set for a variable or fixed output. Available in black or silver with a 17- or (rack-mountable) 19-inch faceplate, the BP-17³ is covered by Bryston’s famous 20-year warranty. Price: $3,995; options include a remote control ($375), a built-in high-resolution DAC ($750), and moving-magnet photo stage ($750)

Bryston • (800) 632-8217 •


Da-Lite Parallax UST 0.45 Projection Screen
Wall-hugging, short-throw projectors that beam images onto a screen only inches away are all the rage. Ready-made for such up-close applications, Da-Lite’s Parallax UST 0.45 screen has lens-like micro-layers that block and absorb light to ensure high contrast, wide viewing angles, and glare-/speckle-free images, even in brightly lit rooms with lots of windows and/or lights.
Faux TV: With its light-absorbing black frame, the UST 0.45 looks like a TV but without the annoying glare from those bright lights and windows (even when no image is present). The flexible screen ships in a roll with an easy-to-assemble 2.5-inch-thick fabric frame. Sizes from 77 to 120 inches (diagonal) are available at prices ranging from $2,699 to $4,149.

Da-Lite / Milestone AV Technologies • (866) 977-3901 •


Audio-Technica ATH-DSR9BT Wireless Headphones
Fifty-seven years after the introduction of its first phono cartridge, Audio-Technica continues its tradition of innovation with wireless headphones that keep the audio signal in the digital domain from source to driver. Instead of a traditional D/A converter, a special chipset processes audio received via Bluetooth and sends digital pulses to the drivers’ voice coils. This “pure digital drive” system supports Qualcomm’s 48-kHz/24-bit aptX HD codec to overcome the sonic limitations of conventional Bluetooth.
Made to Order: A custom 1.8-inch driver with a four-wire voice coil is designed to improve signal accuracy by ensuring precise control of displacement. Features include a rechargeable battery rated for up to 15 hours of continuous use, a built-in mic for answering calls, and hi-res audio support via the supplied USB cable. Price: $549

Audio-Technica • (330) 686-2600 •