Atlantic Technology has modified its flagship System 8200 THX Ultras2 speaker line. The revised version, the 8200e, does away with the pedestal subwoofers and replaces them with a passive pedestal/stand. The system may now be set up with the user's choice of subwoofer(s), such as Atlantic's THX-certified 642eSB ($1000). This change lowers the height of the speaker by about 10 inches. The side panels are now fixed instead of removable, and there is only a single finish available— gloss black. The 8200e C three-way center channel speaker also has fixed side panels in the same gloss black finish, plus a slightly modified crossover said to smooth the response in the lower midrange for improved dialogue reproduction. A complete 8200e 5.1-channel system starts at $10,000.
You will see a few asides in these postings that are not speaker-related, but interesting nonetheless. Shown in the photo is the first preamp ever produced by audio specialist Audio Research, the SP-3 from the mid 1970s. It was on static display in the Audio Research room. Audio Research founder William Z. Johnson passed away in 2011. Johnson and his company were key players in the birthing of high-end.
Audyssey, the company behind the room compensation system that is appearing in more and more AV receivers and pre-pros, introduced its latest technology: Audyssey Dynamic EQ. it's designed to compensate for the loss of sound quality that results as the volume level, is reduced.
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.
B&K showed its new Reference 70 Series 2 AV pre-pro. It will accept multichannel PCM audio over HDMI, but does not decode Dolby TrueHD or DTS HD Master Audio internally. It does offer full video transcoding, as well as video processing via the HQV REON chip from Silicon Optix.
Fred Manteghian recently reviewed the Definitive Technology Mythos ST and had a lot of good things to say about it. Now Definitive has introduced the Mythos STS, a similar but smaller design at $2998 per pair.
I went to six press conferences today, and every one of them made a big deal about "How green is my company." Whether it was the energy efficiency of the product itself, the manufacturing of same, or how you can dispose of it in ways that are friendly to birds, fish, and other living things (though perhaps not to Chinese villagers*), they were stumbling all over each other to impress the conservation- and ecologically-minded members of the press. Not that there's anything wrong with that, of course, but I couldn't help thinking that the industry has discovered that there may be green in being green.
Sound bars are becoming popular for flat panel displays. While we prefer a typical setup with separate left, right, and center speakers arrayed properly across the front (which will always produce a better soundstage than any single enclosure serving all channels), that type of setup doesn't work for everyone. To that end, Definitive Technology demonstrated two new sound bars, or in their words, Mythos Solo Surround Arrays: the SSA42 ($899 for panels from 30" to 46") and SSA50 ($1099, for panels 50" and up).