Parasound Debuts Expanded ZoneMaster Custom Installation Amplifier Line at CEDIA
Parasound has expanded its ZoneMaster custom installation amplifier line with the introduction of three new models at CEDIA Expo 2015. Parasound's ZoneMaster 450, ZoneMaster 250, and ZoneMaster 650--multichannel universal power amplifiers for custom installation-- combine sound quality and reliability with discrete Class AB input stages and specially selected Class D power channels.   Read More

Arcam Introduces new AVRs with Dolby Atmos and DIRAC Live
Visitors to the Custom Electronic Design & Installation (CEDIA) Expo 2015 will have the chance to be the first to see and hear the US debut of the Arcam AVR550 and AVR850 Dolby Atmos AVRs as well as the new SR250 two-channel A/V receiver. Promoted by US distributors, The Sound Organisation, the new HDMI 2.0a and the HDCP2.2 home systems from the British brand will also be presented at a special open-house event.  Read More

AudioControl Launches New Dolby ATMOS Concert AVR-7 & AVR-9 Receivers 
AudioControl's new Concert AVR High-Power Receivers launch at
the Custom Electronic Design & Installation (CEDIA) Expo 2015 with Dolby ATMOS, HDMI 2.0a, HDCP 2.2 and DIRAC Live Room Correction. Both the new AVR-7 and the AVR-9 models feature seven amplifier channels for surround format support and benefit from four high-performance Dolby ATMOS preamp outputs. Both models are also DTS:X ready.  Read More
Dynaudio Takes Sales and Distribution Operation of Dynaudio Professional In-House
Following the April 2015 acquisition of TC Group by Music Group, loudspeaker manufacturer Dynaudio has announced that, begining November 1, 2015, it will be distributing its professional studio monitors directly from its headquarters in Skanderborg, Denmark. Ole Jensen was appointed to head the sales and distribution operation of Dynaudio Professional.  Read More

Full Picture of The Future Home Experience at CEDIA Expo 2015
This year's Custom Electronic Design & Installation Association (CEDIA) Expo event is being held in Dallas, TX, at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center, from October 14-17, 2015, with the actual exhibit sessions taking place from October 15-17. CEDIA Expo 2015 includes special focus areas for security, two-channel audio, and high-performance audio rooms.  Read More

DTS Expands Play-Fi Whole-Home Wireless Audio Ecosystem with New Products, Services, and Partnerships
Anticipating the presentations at the Custom Electronic Design & Installation (CEDIA) Expo 2015, Oct. 14-17, in Dallas, TX, DTS announced several new additions to the DTS Play-Fi whole-home wireless audio ecosystem, including new hardware partners and compatible audio component products, new and expanded music services, and an enhanced user interface. This expansion increases the Play-Fi ecosystem's selection of audio products to 30 different offerings.  Read More

Sonos Introduces New Flagship PLAY:5 Smart Speaker and Trueplay Tuning Software
Sonos, a pioneer and market leader in whole-home audio connected solutions, has announced the all-new flagship Sonos PLAY:5 smart speaker and a new speaker-tuning software called Trueplay. The announcements signal a new series of innovations in hardware and software from Sonos with which the company intends to respond to increasing competition, while leveraging the latest technology advancements.  Read More

CanJam Europe 2015 Visitors Vote for Best of Show
The 2015 edition of CanJam Europe, in Germany, strengthened the show's position as Europe's largest dedicated headphones and personal audio event. Record visitor and exhibitor numbers as well as additional exhibition floor space attest the ongoing interest in the market segment. This year, for the first time, CanJam Europe 2015 had visitors vote for their favorite products of the show.  Read More


Editor's Desk

I Want Some Audio to Go With My 4K!

This week, the Custom Electronic Design & Installation Association (CEDIA) Expo - October 14-17, 2015 - is happening in Dallas, TX, at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center with the actual exhibit sessions taking place from October 15-17. Judging from the pre-event announcements, there will be more new products focusing on the new immersive sound formats - Dolby Atmos, DTS:X and Auro 3D - than we have seen at IFA in Berlin, Germany. Adding to pre-announcements already confirmed by Denon, Marantz and Sony, there will be major releases by Integra, AudioControl, Mark Levison, and Arcam, among others.

On the video side of things, the focus will be obvious: new 4K solutions for home-theater and home projection/displays. Those laser-powered/hybrid laser-LED projectors are also starting to become attractive for residential installations, with both HDMI 2.0 and HDBase-T connectivity powering custom-installs, as we've seen at this years' InfoComm15 show in Orlando, FL.

There is a clear trend on the video side. Clients are demanding 4K for their new residential installations and integrators already know how to make it happen. But what audio goes with 4K? What are the user's expectations for new, forward-looking, installations? Are they buying into immersive audio? Or are they focused on something else?
If commercial installations powered by the usual companies are clearly focused on the evolution towards networking and new-generation interfaces based on the mentioned technologies - which enable 4K image and "immersive" multichannel audio - on the audio side of residential systems, the client's briefing is not so clear. They want whole-home audio and wireless.
If we look at the offerings from more-consumer focused companies such as Sony, Bluesound, Sonos, Polk Audio, Klipsch, and Harman (among many others), what we see is a focus on wireless audio and wireless streaming for whole-home audio solutions. And that's the catch. This fast-growing market segment is causing a dilemma to installation companies dependent on the residential market, since those manufacturers are increasingly making those solutions so simple and convenient that users will be able to configure systems themselves.

There's clearly no margin for state-of-the-art residential systems that don't interface with existing wireless offerings. And when their clients mention wireless audio they don't necessarily think about the "high-end" quality audio experience. Installers would be happy to specify solutions based on the Wireless Speaker & Audio (WiSA) Association technology but consumers don't know about it yet.

Installation companies will want to throw the high-resolution audio (HRA) argument into the equation and are happy to specify expensive dedicated music services that provide high-quality streaming. However, consumers are buying more into the convenience of wireless interoperability with their own choice of smartphones (which they will change every year), and access to music streaming services which they already subscribe to, than the difference between compressed and uncompressed or high-resolution audio.
The problem for installation companies dealing with a consumer aware of the choice and convenience of wireless systems and music streaming services is that they are increasingly influenced by powerful marketing messages, which don't yet have a counterpart from high-quality custom-installation options. It will be an interesting angle to see how the companies attending CEDIA will be advising commercial integrators on the best way to sell the (still expensive) infrastructure technologies that go with 4K picture and immersive audio home-theater systems, while simultaneously managing their clients' expectations of using the latest streaming audio services.

After all, even that client specifying a brand new multichannel million-dollar Steinway Lyngdorf immersive audio installation will want the Spotify Connect option.

You can DIY!
Build a Voltage and Current Peak Detector
By George Ntanavaras (Greece)
Here is a simple portable device from George Ntanavaras that can help answer the question about peak voltage and peak current requirements and whether or not your power amplifier is capable of driving your loudspeaker without clipping. As George explains, the detector can be a useful piece of test equipment. It accurately measures the positive peak voltages up to 100 V and the positive peak currents up to 20 A within the entire audio range. It is also portable and reliable. If you don't have such equipment in your lab, this is a good opportunity to build one. This article was originally published in audioXpress March 2015 - Focus on Test & Measurement Edition.  Read the Full Article Available Online

Voice Coil Test Bench
B&C Speakers 12NDL88 12" Woofer 
By Vance Dickason
This Test Bench article focuses on the 12NDL88 from Italian pro sound OEM, B&C Speakers. The 12NDL88 is a new 12" high sound pressure level (SPL) woofer with a neodymium motor. B&C Speakers adds this 12" driver to an already extensive line up of 12" pro sound woofers-18 total, which include eight neodymium motor 12" and 10 ferrite motor 12". This sample submission is in the upper range of power handling in this extensive group with a continuous power handling rating of 1,400 W (700 W RMS). Applications range from two- and three-way PA speakers and compact two-way designs for high SPL in limited spaces. This article was originally published in Voice Coil, August 2015.  Read The Full Article Online

AX November 2015: Digital Login
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