CEDIA 2009

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Scott Wilkinson  |  Sep 11, 2009  |  0 comments

Now that I've seen the new VX-33 projector after writing about it before the show, I can confirm that it is indeed bright enough to fill a giant screen and compete with some ambient light. The demo was a football game on a 14-foot-wide Stewart GrayHawk with the room lights on, and the picture was plenty punchy.

Tom Norton  |  Sep 10, 2009  |  First Published: Sep 11, 2009  |  0 comments
The folks from SunBrite make the best sun and rainproof TVs I've ever seen. In fact, they make the ONLY sun and rainproof TVs I've ever seen. But then, I don't get out much.
Scott Wilkinson  |  Sep 09, 2009  |  First Published: Sep 10, 2009  |  0 comments

Continuing the networking theme at Sony's press conference was the STR-DA5500ES 7.1-channel A/V receiver. It offers Internet and home-network connectivity, providing Internet radio and Rhapsody online content as well as media file sharing via DLNA (Digital Living Network Alliance). Also featured is Control4-certified control over IP, making it possible to control the AVR from anywhere on the network. The STR-DA5500ES should be available in October for $2000.

Tom Norton  |  Sep 10, 2009  |  0 comments
LCD televisions with LED backlighting were all over the show (but c'mon Toshiba and others, they are LCD TVs with a new form of backlighting, NOT LED TVs), and Toshiba's 670 series with local dimming are among the best. We know, because you'll see a review of one in our November 2009 issue.
Scott Wilkinson  |  Sep 10, 2009  |  0 comments

After blogging about these in-wall speakers before the show, I was eager to hear them for myself. The demo consisted of some CD selections in 2.1 (using the new SCS subwoofer, about which more in the next post), multichannel audio from DVD concert videos, and a clip from <I>Monsters, Inc.</I> shown on a Screen Research ClearPix2 woven, acoustically transparent screen. The system controller provides Audyssey MultEQ XT and several memories for different setups&#151;music, movies, speakers behind a screen or not, etc.&#151;and the result sounded great, with deep, clean bass and excellent imaging.

Mark Fleischmann  |  Sep 10, 2009  |  0 comments
The s90i in-ceiling subwoofer from Wisdom contains two 5x7-foot drivers. We trust further comment will be unnecessary.
Scott Wilkinson  |  Sep 09, 2009  |  First Published: Sep 10, 2009  |  0 comments

In addition to the SL90, LG also introduced the SL80 line of LCD TVs, which use conventional fluorescent backlighting. Even so, their depth is a svelte 1.8 inches, and they also incorporate a "single layer" design with a single piece of glass covering both screen and narrow bezel. Three screen sizes comprise this line&#151;42, 47, and 55 inches. The SL80 is available now for retail prices of $1600, $1900, and $2800, respectively.

Scott Wilkinson  |  Sep 10, 2009  |  1 comments

I blogged about this LED-illuminated DLP projector before the show, but now I've seen a demo, which looked great on a Da-Lite Affinity screen (0.95 gain), even with some ambient light. The LEDs are claimed to have a 100,000-hour lifespan, which corresponds to 12 or 13 years of normal use. Colors looked quite natural thanks to the advanced calibration process that assures an accurate color gamut and grayscale.

Mark Fleischmann  |  Sep 10, 2009  |  0 comments
Two years ago, PSB introduced the top-line Synchrony line. A year ago an almost equally high-end line was added, the Imagine. With the revised version of the Image, PSB's number three falls into place. There are two towers and three monitors and -- tower-averse as we are -- we think matched sets of any of the latter would make a fine basis for a system. These two-way stand-mounts include the B6 (6.5-inch woofer, $499/pair), B5 (5.25-inch, $399/pair), and B4 (four-inch, $299/pair). We've heard the B6 and B4 and they're superb, with more bass than you'd expect. This is one of the few speaker brands whose founder, Paul Barton, spends significant amounts of time in China QC-ing the product.
Scott Wilkinson  |  Sep 10, 2009  |  3 comments

Atlantic Technology isn't the only company with a concept product at CEDIA. Pioneer is showing its Project ET (Entertainment Tap), a networking paradigm that could be incorporated into a real product by next year. The Linux-based box being demonstrated at the show holds a 1TB (terabyte) hard disk, optical drive that can read Blu-ray, DVD, and CD as well as burn DVD and CD, HDMI I/O, and USB and RS-232 ports; in fact, up to 128 USB devices can be connected, including more hard disks.

Mark Fleischmann  |  Sep 10, 2009  |  3 comments
Trufig is a new brand from the founders of Sonance. Its job is to make touchscreens, lightswitches, and other custom installable goodies practically disappear into the wall, as you can see in the pic -- old-style fixtures at right, disappearing ones at left. It was inspired by the after-the-fact design process that's been taking place when Sonance's architectural speakers come up against the wishes of architects and interior designers. The things being made to disappear are not actually Sonance or Trufig products but things like Crestron touchscreens and Lutron light fixtures. Starting at $300 for a single-gang fixture, Trufig is not cheap, but it will presumably find its way into the high-end custom install market.
Scott Wilkinson  |  Sep 10, 2009  |  0 comments

Aside from the DLS-RS4000 4K behemoth, no less than six new projectors were announced at JVC's press conference today&#151;three in the Reference series from the company's professional division and three in the Procision line from the consumer group, all with HQV video processing. At the top of the heap are the DLA-HD990 and RS35, which feature hand-selected and -tuned optics, 70,000:1 native contrast ratio with no dynamic iris, inverse telecine back to 24fps with 96Hz refresh rate, and ISF and THX certification. Both will list for $10,000 and should be available this month. Stepping down the model ladder, we come to the HD950 and RS25, with 50,000:1 contrast and THX movie mode for $8000. The entry level is occupied by the HD550 ($5000) and RS15 ($5500) with 35,000:1 and 30,000:1 contrast, respectively. The demos looked quite good, especially because JVC always goes to great lengths to show its projectors in a darkened environment.

Tom Norton  |  Sep 10, 2009  |  0 comments
JVC is introducing a whole new range of its DILA projectors at the show. There are six new models, three from the consumer division and three essentially identical models from the pro division. The star of the six is the DLA0RS35 (pro, $10,000), available this month. It has a claimed peak contrast ratio of 70,000:1, adds JVC's 120Hz Clear Motion Drive, and is both THX- and ISF-certified. The consumer version is the DLA-HD990, at the same price.
Scott Wilkinson  |  Sep 09, 2009  |  First Published: Sep 10, 2009  |  0 comments

In the realm of front projectors, Sony unveiled the VPL-VW85 (though Tom Norton has already conducted a review of a pre-production unit for <I>Home Theater</I>, and he liked it very much). With a new auto iris, it claims a dynamic contrast ratio of 120,000:1, and it refreshes the image at 120Hz with dark-frame insertion, a Sony hallmark. It should hit retailers in October for around $8000.

Scott Wilkinson  |  Sep 10, 2009  |  0 comments

This skinny subwoofer, dubbed the Suitcase Subwoofer (SCS) because of its shape, hardly looks like it can go deep, but it does. Even more surprising is the driver compliment, which consists of two 5x7-inch "woofers" at the mouth of what Wisdom calls a complimentary folded horn. Only the horn's port is visible, and it can be configured to exit the cabinet on the front or either side, making placement very flexible. This serves the company's goal of a sub that can be placed where traditional subs can't, such as behind or under furniture. Power is supplied by a 500W amp, and the list price will be around $4000 when it ships in October.