At $3000, the new T785 is a new high in price for an NAD AV receiver. But it's loaded with features, including 7x120 conservatively rated watts, 4 HDMI 1.3 inputs, the Audyssey MultiEQ XT room correction system, and multichannel audio (PCM) over HDMI (but no on-board decoding for Dolby TrueHD or DTS HD Master Audio.
I was hoping at this show to be able to get some definitive answers about the aduio decoding and interactivity capabilities of LG's Super Blu, second-gen combi player. Only a couple of these questions were answered here as the unit at the show was a prototype that LG's reps weren't yet famiilar with.
I think Aviamo in Italian must mean "expensive," if it means anything at all. At $18,000 this 65" 1080p Fujitsu plasma looked great, but it faces stiff competition for a lot less money. And we thought that the new 60" Pioneer Elite was steep at $7500.
Yamaha's flagship may be the new RX-Z11, but it hasn't forgotten about those of us who like our AV receivers to be more or less affordable. Case in point, the new RX-V3800 at $1799. Offering 140Wpc x 7, it also has HDMI 1.3a with Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD Master Audio decoding, iPod compatibility network connectivity via an Ethernet port, and Yamaha's traditional two front "presence" channels. There's also on-board video scaling up to 1080p.
Integra has a range of new AV receivers, but its most interesting introduction is probably the $1600 DTC-9.8 pre-pro. A quick look suggests that it features the same bells and whistles as the company's flagship THX Ultra2 flagship receiver, minus only amplifiers. There's also a matching amplifier, the DTA-9.4, at $3000.
The Lexicon MV-5 is a new surround preamp-processor from the company that more or less defines the genre for multichannel audiophiles. At $2999, it's the most affordable Lex yet, and thus might entice a few receiver users to go for higher-performing separates instead. Put it together with the GX-7 amp and you've got a $6000 package.
Every six months some clueless publication hypes a stupid plastic turntable with USB output. This is a terrible way to transfer vinyl to MP3 because a bad turntable is a bad turntable regardless of how it outputs the signal. Pro-Ject eases my irritation over this sorry situation with the Phono Box II ($179), a decent little phono preamp with USB output. Connect a good turntable to it--Pro-Ject offers several, and also makes them for Music Hall--and your vinyl-sourced digital music library will sound a lot better.
The Decco is a stereo integrated amp that brings together the warmth of tubes with the digital convenience of USB input. It's shown here with a Sonos box--and imagine our surprise when David Solomon picked up the Sonos and shoved it into the back of the preamp! Apparently there's a space there just the right size for it. The product will make its debut in high-gloss black for $799 and the woody version shown here will go for a hundred more. Also of vital interest are floorstanding speakers from Era, including the D-10 ($1700/pair, October) and the D-14 ($2200/pair). We can't wait to get five of them in for review.
This flower-like object is part of the Klipsch Icon. "Lofted throat geometry" is the name and 100-degree vertical and horizontal dispersion is the game. Internal biamplification should give the floorstanding version ($2500/pair) quite a woof. There are stand-mount and bookshelf models with lofted throats too. Klipsch also showed a large floorstanding speaker, the Palladium, which is already selling to European and Asian audiophiles and will come to the U.S. in early 2008 for 25 grand.
In addition to its new Synchrony line of full range speakers, PSB has two new, compact subwoofers, the SubSeries HD8 and HD10. The smaller HD8 measures less than a foot in any dimension and weighs a scant 30 lbs. It's shown here next to the Synchrony One tower, the top of the Synchrony range.
The Polk I-Sonic ES2 is the second-generation version of the famed do-it-all radio. It handles HD Radio, XM, Sirius, your neighbor's brainwaves, AM, FM, net radio, Rhapsody, our brainwaves, and iPod. Use full capabilities at your own risk. And it now has a tag button (center, bottom) that applies tagging data to up to 50 songs at a time for storage in its own flash memory and the iPod. You could tag songs heard on HD Radio for later purchase on iTunes. Coming in October for $499.
In what is becoming an annual tradition, we asked Steven Stone about his footwear for the show. The contributor to many fine publications replied that he brought three pair of suede shoes to CEDIA this year. Of course the blue, blue, blue suede shoes are the ones we wanted to snap.