Meridian – Their focus at the show was primarily on integrators. They were discussing their 271 Digital Theatre Controller, 251 Powered Zone controller, 218 Zone Controller, and 258 Hi-Res 8-channel power amplifier. They also had the 4k-switcher UHD722 Ultra High Definition Audio Processor on display.
Flexson‘s 4-way Wall Mount for Sonos Amp
GoldenEar Technology – Lots of gear – including their Triton Reference towers. They debuted their soon to be released active DigitalAktiv 3 bookshelf speakers. It’ll support Bluetooth, WiFi, and has built-in support for Chromecast (awesome!). Drivers are powered independently with the bass driver powered by a class A/B amp. Pricing is TBD but expected to be around $1,000.
Hisense – A pretty cool 100″ 4K UHD Smart Laser TV by Hisense. Built-in sound by Harman Kardon + wireless subwoofer. It’s not really a “display” but a short-throw laser projector. A wonderful and practical all-in-one package with great picture. Priced at $9,999.99.
Huge fan of Z-Wave devices for all my smart home needs.
Bond by Olibra – This is a pretty cool device that makes dumb devices (AC, ceiling fans, blinds, TV) into smart ones. It has an IR and RF blaster! Works with Google Assistant and Alexa.
Anthem and Paradigm are teaming up with Qobuz for all their 2-channel streaming needs. They had their new Paradigm Premier 800F speakers driven by Anthem electronics.
MartinLogan – New Dynamo subs with Anthem Room Correction (ARC) and a secret demo to celebrate their 35th Anniversary. One of the few demos that were for 2-channel experiences. The speakers were hidden so that the audience could focus on what’s most important – the music. The soundstage was huge and the music was layered out beautifully. Maybe we’ll find out more about these mysterious speakers another day.
Kaleidescape – The premise of Kaleidescape is compelling. Rather than buying a bunch of physical discs, you could download and stream everything – losslessly. No video or audio degradation whatsoever. The Terra movie server stores up to 40TB (!!!). I might have to give these products a try.
ELAC demo’ed their compact 3.1 home theater package. For those looking to get better sound out of their TV but don’t quite have space, these speakers could be oriented and wall-mounted with ease. It also comes with a small 3.1-channel amplifier that could be mounted (with standard bolts) to the back of the TV. Quite nifty.
Parts Express CBT36K Line Array Speaker – Great sound for the money.
KEF LS50 – Gorgeous pieces of art.
KEF‘s $225,000/pair Muon – Talk about making a statement. Only 100 sets were made and less than a handful left.
KEF announces their new, and heavily revamped R Series (R11, R7, R5, R3, R2c, and R8a). Dan Sheinbaum was kind enough to elaborate on all the changes (no less than 1,000). The main differences include a “Shadow Flare” trim ring which reduces diffraction effects, a port design with flexible walls which prevents unwanted resonances, a redesigned motor system, and much more. I must also say, the walnut finish is absolutely stunning and gets pretty close to the texture of the KEF Reference 1 bookshelves. The other thing I really like is the new magnetic suede grilles with 1,801 precision-cut holes. This design supposedly sounds more transparent than traditional grilles – and looks amazing. I personally preferred them on. KEF has taken all these steps in the name of the reproducing the purest sound possible.
Mr. Audio Bacon himself. An open-minded electrical engineer and software developer by trade. I have an obsession with the enjoyment of all things media - specifically in the realm of music and film. So much heart and soul (and money) go into the creation of this artistry. My aim is to find out which products get me closer to what the musicians and directors intended.