CEDIA 2014

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Thomas J. Norton  |  Sep 11, 2014  |  0 comments
LG launched a wide range of new TVs at a press event on the first full day of the show but the eye-catcher was a 105-inch curved, Ultra HD, LCD/LED set with a 21:9 aspect ratio. The company also showed a flat 98-inch 16:9 Ultra HD LCD/LED model. At $100,000 (OK, it’s actually $99,999.99) for the 105-incher and $40,000 for the 98-incher, they’re not exactly impulse purchases.

But both use IPS panels for better off-axis performance, have full array backlit local dimming, and incorporate 7.1-channel audio systems designed in cooperation with Harman Kardon.

Mark Fleischmann  |  Sep 11, 2014  |  0 comments
Listen Audio captured our attention by stating its intention to build the kind of product that "allows the listener to shut off from the world." One such product is the Diffuse, an absorptive panel that takes the form of a modular 2 x 2 foot panel in foam, vinyl, wood, or laminate finishes, starting at $90 for the foam version. It uses differing slot widths and a 3/4-inch air gap to increase bandwidth. It can zap high-frequency flutter echoes but operates down to low frequencies. Benefits: "More stage. The walls seem to push away." Listen also showed the Voice ($3995/each), an in-wall speaker with a 3.5-inch-thick enclosure, 3/4-inch-thick cabinet walls, coaxial drivers, and a 94dB sensitivity rating. It is designed "to compete with the highest-end freestanding two-channel speakers" while also satisfying multichannel and in-wall needs. Listen's Concierge service will dispatch one of its several acoustic design firm partners to the location. Once they determine the specs, the installer comes in and does his work, and then the engineers return to see how the installation worked out and assess the need for tweaks. This is a most impressive company.
Darryl Wilkinson  |  Sep 15, 2014  |  0 comments
Lutron’s President, Michael Pessina, began the company’s CEDIA EXPO 2014 press conference by noting that this was Lutron’s 21st CEDIA attendance. Twenty years ago, lighting control mostly consisted of “lot of products hand-wired together.” Today, of course, the overwhelming trend in lighting control and home automation is to use digital, wireless products. To maintain the company’s prominence in the lighting control industry, Pessina said that Lutron spends approximately ten-percent of its sales on research and development. Almost all of that R&D, Pessina added, was in the areas of digital control and wireless connectivity. It’s one reason why there will be a Lutron Caseta Wireless lighting control app available for the Apple Watch when it becomes available in early 2015. (Lutron was even part of the Apple Watch announcement during the Keynote.)

Moving on to...

Bob Ankosko  |  Sep 11, 2014  |  0 comments
Amid the aisles and aisles of home automation systems and wholehouse audio/video equipment at CEDIA 2014 is a tiny booth manned by Canadian startup Mass Fidelity. The focal point is a battery-powered Bluetooth speaker that delivers surprisingly robust and spacious sound from a box that can sit in the palm of your hand. It’s called The Core and it is most definitely not your everyday Bluetooth speaker.
Bob Ankosko  |  Sep 14, 2014  |  1 comments
Great Britain’s Monitor Audio introduced the sleek and uniquely styled A100 music streamer/amplifier at CEDIA Expo 2014. The unit packs a 50-watt Class AB amplifier and high-resolution digital-to-analog converter intro a compact, curved chassis that is sure to raise a few eyebrows.

Bob Ankosko  |  Sep 12, 2014  |  0 comments
In a world populated by all-in-one powered soundbars, Monitor Audio showed two SB Series passive soundbars slated to ship in December: The compact SB-2 for TVs with screens between 50 and 60 inches and the SB-3, which will be custom built for screen sizes above 60 inches.

Both models feature separate driver arrays for the left, center, and right channels. The SB-2 employs a 4-inch woofer, 1-inch horn-loaded tweeter, and passive radiator in each section, while the SB-3 uses the same complement for the left and right channels but doubles up on the woofers and passive radiators for the center section.

The ceramic-coated aluminum/magnesium drivers are borrowed from Monitor’s flagship Radius line. Cabinets are made of internally braced high-density MDF covered in black acoustically transparent fabric and have brushed aluminum end caps for a touch of style. Wall mounting is possible with an optional low-profile bracket that provides easy cable access.

Bob Ankosko  |  Sep 13, 2014  |  0 comments
Deezer, a French music streaming service with 16 million active users and 5 million paying subscribers, is coming to the U.S. with the “world’s largest” music catalog of more than 35 million tracks—all captured in the lossless FLAC format.

Darryl Wilkinson  |  Sep 12, 2014  |  2 comments
Nakymatone has a unique approach to invisible in-wall sound with two stealthy speakers called the Echt and the Mooi. Both speakers measure 23” x 9.75” x 3.5” (H x W x D) but are designed to be fit behind drywall using a 16 5/8” x 9.75” (H x W) hole. The speakers utilize a special removable handle that allows installers to slide the speaker into the hole and then pull it flush up against the drywall before fastening it in place an applying a 1/16” plaster skim to blend it in with the surface of the wall. The acoustic panel consists of an aluminum honeycomb core with doped paper skin. Both models have a sealed, acoustically tuned aluminum enclosure; while the higher-end Echt’s enclosure is also anodized for higher performance sound quality.

According to Nakymatone, the frequency response of the Mooi is...

Bob Ankosko  |  Sep 13, 2014  |  0 comments
Maine-based NEAR, a pioneer in outdoor speakers known for building audiophile-quality speakers that can withstand extreme weather conditions, previewed a new “all environment” subwoofer designed to meet or exceed the stringent Mil-Std-810 military spec for resistance to humidity, salt air, water, and extreme heat and cold.

Darryl Wilkinson  |  Sep 10, 2014  |  0 comments
After four years of availability in over 55 countries around the world, smart home hub and device maker, FIBARO, is finally entering the U.S. market. In addition to the Home Center Lite (approx $280), FIBARO will also be making available the more powerful Home Center 2 (pricing TBA). The most significant feature that differentiates FIBARO from the competitive smart home hub systems (Revolv, $300; SmartThings, $99; Staples Connect, $49; etc.) is the systems’ abilities to interface with and control elements of home AV systems. Currently, Revolv and SmartThings offer extremely limited control of some Sonos components; but neither hub is capable of controlling gear in home theater systems.

FIBARO is also notable for its...

Bob Ankosko  |  Sep 13, 2014  |  0 comments
Electric Mirror has conquered the hospitality mirror TV market over the past 16 years and is now targeting the residential and commercial spaces with models that incorporate patented Iris glass technology said to allow the TV image to show through the mirror better than any TV on the market.

John Sciacca  |  Sep 13, 2014  |  0 comments
Reach Out and See Someone Video calling is certainly nothing new, in fact with iPhone and Android devices most of us carry the ability to video chat with someone around in our pocket. But the home intercom is still a popular request, especially in larger homes where you want a more elegant way to find everyone than, “HELLO?!? WHERE ARE YOU?!? HELLO!!!!” New company, Nucleus, has one of the coolest intercom systems I’ve seen in a while and at a price that is pretty startling.

John Sciacca  |  Sep 11, 2014  |  0 comments
People like the idea of having a full motion, articulating arm flat panel TV wall mount but they generally avoid buying them for two big reasons: 1) They stick off the wall too far and look ugly when the TV is pushed back “flat” against the wall and 2) They are too stiff and hard to move. OmniMount’s new OE120IW recessed in-wall mount system solves both of these issues.

Darryl Wilkinson  |  Sep 11, 2014  |  0 comments
Although OmniMount is perhaps most well-known for making mounts and accessories designed for hanging large flat screen TVs on the wall and projectors on the ceiling, the company showed a new, slightly smaller mounting product in the booth at CEDIA. The new device, Stand for iPad, is an adjustable stand for iPads (with another version for iPad Air devices) that has three attachment and usage options: 1) as a desktop stand; 2) as an under-cabinet mount; and 3) as a wall-mount bracket. The new Stand for iPad folds flat for transporting or for hiding under cabinets when not in use as a convenient iPad holder above a countertop. The bracket uses a magnet built into the protective Case for iPad (included in the package) to securely hold it against the mount while allowing the iPad to rotate with minimal effort or be removed easily from the mount. The Stand for iPad will have an MSRP of $99.95 and is expected to be available in November.
John Sciacca  |  Sep 10, 2014  |  0 comments
Origin Acoustics is made up of the team that literally invented the architectural speaker in 1976 and they have re-teamed to revitalize and re-revolutionize the in-wall and in-ceiling category. Company president, Jeremy Burkhardt, said they reunited because of the shared passion and love for this business and industry and the desire to continue making innovative products. The team’s first step was to get together and examine the leading architectural speakers currently on the market and brainstorm ways to make these speakers smaller so larger woofers can fit in smaller spaces and easier to install.