Without any perforations in its surface, how does the RockSolid rock speaker emit sound? Using its polyurethane composite surface, which serves as a driver, excited by underlying magnets. Finishes include sandstone, charcoal, red rock, and custom versions. Pricing will range from $500 for a single speaker to $900-1000 for a dual version.
The B&W DB1 sub will be a big deal when it ships in December for $4500. Its two 12-inch drivers can be equalized with an app downloaded to a PC, then input into the sub. B&W (as we persist in thinking of the company, being old-fashioned that way) also showed two new in-wall series, the 600 and 700, both with innovative back boxes that make for an easy install. The 700 Series back box is especially interesting -- it's a two-piece structure that fits into a slot in the wall, with the pieces joined by a hinge. You can see the bottom half of the back box trailing below two of the speakers in the picture.
Runco has announced the QuantumColor Q-750i single-chip DLP projector, its first model (and one of the industry's firsts) to utilize LEDs for its light source rather than a conventional projection lamp. Runco calls this technology InfiniLight, a name likely derived from the fact that the LEDs, which also replace the conventional DLP color wheel, can be modulated by the source to drop in level, or even shut off completely, in dark or fully black scenes or interscene blackouts.
Given a choice between an iPod dock and a component that accepts a front-panel USB connection, we prefer the latter. And that's what's available in the Rotel RCX-1500 ($1499) CD receiver and RDG-1520 ($999). Both have FM and internet radio tuners but the 1500 also has a slot-load CD drive and 100 Class D watts times two.
Cambridge Audio has introduced its own truly universal, Profile 2.0 Blu-ray player, the Azur 650R, at $779. It not only plays Blu-rays, DVDs, and CDs, but multichannel SACD and DVD-Audio as well--either through its analog outputs or as a bitstream over HDMI. According to the Cambridge rep, it will also decode SACD and DVD-Audio to multichanel PCM for output over HDMI
Sometimes it's easy to forget that CEDIA is aimed for custom installers. And installers need tools. The mad dogger from Mad Dog tools was busy demonstrating his all purpose, drill and mixmaster Cujo thingy.
Panasonic certainly thinks so. While there is currently no standard for home 3D, a consortium of companies is working on one, and according to Panasonic reps a decision is expected before the January CES. That means we could see product and software within a year. The companies are pushing for a standard that will produce full 1080p resolution to both eyes using sequential frames and active shutter glasses--though I would expect to see some scalability based on price. But you will need a new TV and 3D Blu-ray player to take full advantage of it (HDMI 1.4 will be required).
Epson showed four new projectors at the show. The PowerLite Pro Cinema 9500UB features Epson's COlor Isolation System (no filters needed to set Hue and Saturation), ISF certification with ISF Day and Night modes, more rapid changeover to different source resolutions, and an improved dynamic iris with a claimed peak contrast ratio of 200,000:1. Under $4000, November. The PowerLite Pro Cinema 9500UB offers many of the 9500UB's features, with a claimed peak contrast ratio of 36,000:1 ($2600, November).
Sharp's new Aquos LE700U lineup includes sets at 52" (LC-52LE700U, $2800), 46"(LC-46LE700U, $2200), 40" (LC-40LE700U, $1700), and 32" (LC-32LE700U, $1100). All provide instant access to customized web-based content via Aquos Net, 120Hz operation, and claim drastically reduced energy consumption (see the following blog). They also employ full LED backlighting (not sidelighting) and claim a peak contrast ratio of 2,000,000:1, which sounds remarkable given that the LED backlights do not employ local dimming.
There's a maniacal race afoot in the TV business for the lowest power consumption per inch-or the greenest set. Sharp's LE700U series is ready for the fight. The LC-52LE700U, shown here, is rated to draw 105W. In this demo, I saw it fluctuate between the roughly 98 watts shown here, on an image of average brightness, and about 150 watts. Since sets are always adjusted in show conditions for far more brightness than you'll need at home, the rating seems reasonable for normal domestic use.
Pioneer's Project ETAP is intended to lead to a product that will provide a wide range of home management and media storage and access. In addition to downloading, streaming, and storage of all variety of program material (the 1TB of on-board storage can be supplemented by external hard drives), it will likely offer additional core features, including those listed in the following blog entry.
Here are some of the major features anticipated for Pioneer's ETAP system. It's the BD Managed Copy that intrigues us most, and Pioneer conducted the first US public demo of this feature here at CEDIA. Managed copy allows suitably flagged BDs to be downloaded to a hard drive for storage and play back in full high definition. It is expected to begin showing up on some BD discs within the next year, though it will require a special BD player/recorder to make use of it. Studios can also charge for the privilege if they like. Since no current BDs are so encoded, none of your current collection can be copied.
Anthem has its first Blu-ray player, the Anthem Statement BLX200 ($800). It offers all the features of most BD machines, including Profile 2.0 with 1GB of memory and Internal decoding of the new high rez audio formats (or bitstream out if you prefer). If you're asking, like most BD players it does not play SACD or DVD-Audio.
The new Anthem Statement LTX 500v and LTX 300v projectors look a lot like the new JVC DLA-HD550 and DLA-HD950, and that's because they are, with small cosmetic differences. The Anthems are also slightly more expensive.