New Products

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Peter Pachal  |  Feb 07, 2007  |  0 comments

THE RIGHT PROTOCOL Vibe has its own take on whole-house audio: The system uses IP (Internet Protocol) to communicate between components. Music on the Vibe AS1-1250/6 server, which stores as many as 1,250 uncompressed CDs, streams digitally over your network to up to six rooms.

Peter Pachal  |  Feb 07, 2007  |  0 comments

LEAN AND SO MEAN The leading 58-inch plasma panel costs 5 grand and can't even display a 1080p signal without downconverting it to 720p. Seems like JVC's got it all figured out with its new slim HD-ILA LCoS HDTV. For $3,300, you get a crisp 58-inch 1080p screen in a cabinet just 10.8 inches deep that goes flush against a wall and can even be wall-mounted.

Peter Pachal  |  Feb 07, 2007  |  0 comments

HARBORING MUSIC These days, an iPod dock and $3.98 might get you a grande latte at Starbucks, but Escient has a dock model that qualifies as a premium blend. The FP-1 doesn't just stream your iPod music - it completely integrates it into the company's FireBall Music Manager, combining those songs with any tunes you have on servers or PCs.

Peter Pachal  |  Feb 07, 2007  |  0 comments

HIGH-DEF CRED A nice side effect of everyone going gaga over 1080p displays is that 720p gear is more affordable than ever. Case in point: Sanyo's PLV-Z5 projector, which will fill your wall or screen with 100-inch HD images for less than 2 Gs.

Ken Richardson  |  Feb 12, 2007  |  0 comments

Sure, satellite radio is great. But for many listeners, there are still times when they want to come back to earth, so to speak. For those listeners and those times, Cambridge SoundWorks offers a new line of high-performance radios, including this trio of terrestrials.

Doug Newcomb  |  Apr 03, 2007  |  0 comments

BLUE WONDER You couldn't swing a cellphone at CES in January without hitting a car stereo with Bluetooth capability. Being able to connect a mobile phone to a head unit wirelessly isn't just a convenience that commuters crave; in many states, hands-free phone operation behind the wheel is the law, not a choice.

Ken Richardson  |  Apr 03, 2007  |  0 comments

($499 for 4 gigabytes, $599 for 8 GB; apple.com) With hip-hooray and ballyhoo, Apple CEO Steve Jobs previewed the much-anticipated iPhone at the Macworld convention. Combining a 3.5-inch widescreen iPod, a Wi-Fi-enabled "Internet communications device," and, oh yes, a cellphone, it also includes a 2-megapixel camera.

Ken Richardson  |  Apr 03, 2007  |  0 comments

($299) No, it's not called iTV, but that little white box down there does allow you to play all of your iTunes content from your PC or Mac wirelessly on your widescreen TV. The 40-GB hard drive can store up to 50 hours of video, 9,000 songs, or 25,000 photos, or a combination. Apple TV is capable of delivering high-definition images at 720p.

Peter Pachal  |  Apr 03, 2007  |  0 comments

SHADOW DEMON JVC must have thought the badge of honor you got when you opted for a front projector could use a little polish, so it created the DLA-HD1, said to have the greatest contrast ratio in Projectorland (rated 15,000:1 - without the need for a mechanical iris that reduces the brightness of whites).

Peter Pachal  |  Apr 03, 2007  |  0 comments

CLASSY STORAGE If that Ikea TV stand you got in college is now looking like your system's idea of a studio apartment, Salamander's Hampton 236, from its new Chameleon series, is a four-bedroom house. With its elegant black finish and options such as a plasma mount, power conditioner, and cooling fans, your gear will be living a life of luxury.

Peter Pachal  |  Apr 03, 2007  |  0 comments

YOU'RE SO MONEY A few short years ago, a 50-inch plasma TV was a toy of the super-rich, reserved for those who could drop as much coin on a set as their kids' college tuition. At $2,500, Hitachi's P50H401 HD plasma heralds a new era, where bigscreens are within reach of ... well, at least someone you know.

Peter Pachal  |  Apr 03, 2007  |  0 comments

NEW TRADITION Kevlar woofer cones, Nautilus tweeters, elegant lines - these are definitely B&W speakers. But there's a twist: The VM6 integrates the company's trademark components into a thoroughly modern design. It's only 4 inches deep, just enough for the tweeter's tapered tail to fit, so high frequencies sound free and clear.

Peter Pachal  |  Apr 03, 2007  |  0 comments

UPCONVERT, MARK DOWN Now that your piggy bank is empty since you blew all your savings on that 1080p HDTV, you probably don't have much left for a receiver. Good thing Pioneer's VSX-917V won't set you back too much, and it's totally ready for your HD set with its two HDMI inputs. So don't feel bad about splurging on that HD DVD player either.

Peter Pachal  |  Apr 03, 2007  |  0 comments

GREAT OUTDOORS Too many people coming over for movie night? Move the festivities outside with the Backyard Drive-In screen, ready to serve up your flick on a huge screen after about 10 minutes of setup. Just park a projector in front of it, and your entertainment is stretched out on a 12-foot viewing area - 18 feet for the extra-large version.

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