SDI Technologies, the maker of the hot-selling iPod clock radio, is showing new affordably priced iPod speaker accessories at CES, including two small home-based units, the iH10 ($49)and iH4 ($49), and the portable iH19 ($69), which comes in multiple colors. The company also has a license to use the Timex name in upcoming iPod clock radios, so this is clearly an accessory company on the move. During my tour of the SDI meeting room (for dealers), I was shown a couple of more novel iPod accesories, including a speaker with a built-in iPod dock that looks like a water … Read more
You may not have heard much about Eton, the sole licensee of Grundig for all of North America, but you may have seen some of its portable radio products in a Sharper Image catalog. The company had a well-priced and decent-performing iPod speaker last year, the Eton Sound 50, and at CES it was showing a couple of new products, including the Apple Hi-Fi-like Sound 200, which will come out in March for $250. Along with an iPod dock on top of the speaker, there's also a USB port for playing back tunes from a USB thumbdrive and … Read more
When people think of the high end speaker maker Thiel, affordable isn't the first word that comes to mind (though quality certainly is). But, they're working to change that (the affordable part). For the first time in the company's history, they've introduced a box speaker (i.e. not an in-wall) for under $1,000, the new Coherent Source SCS4 LCR two-way bookshelf speaker. Thiel mounts the two drivers in a coaxial design, which means that its 1-inch metal dome tweeter is mounted in the middle the 6.5-inch woofer. If you didn't know better, you … Read more
Speaker wires and A/V cables are the bane of any home theater system. In recent years, most mainstream manufacturers have offered one of two options to cut the number of wires: produce virtual surround systems that offer only one or two speakers (plus a subwoofer); or utilize a wireless rear speaker module that eliminates the need to run speaker cables the length of the room (but still necessitates quite a few cables of its own). But true wireless A/V systems have remained elusive.
Enter Neosonik. The start-up hi-fi company is using CES to highlight its home theater technology … Read more
I met with HP this morning to hear how its new MediaSmart TVs work with your Media Center PC ecosystem. (Takeaway: the TVs will play your PC-stored digital media, but you have to use Windows Media Player 11, and FairPlay-protected media from the iTunes Store won't work. Also, the built-in 802.11n wireless networking is a much-needed high-bandwidth touch.) The highlight of the meeting, though, was when a member of HP's PR team stepped in to hand the PR manager giving the presentation a write-up of the just-announced Apple TV device.
In a heretofore-unseen display of marketing agility, … Read more
Well, this is a first...the first one I've seen, anyway. Yesterday at CES, Viewsonic announced the ViewDock projector, which features a built-in iPod dock. According to Viewsonic's press release, iPod users are "three times as likely to download video clips, movies and Web casts to their computers"--the company is obviously interested in capitalizing on this fact. Viewsonic asserts that the ViewDock is great for on-the-go sharing, but at 3-plus pounds and roughly 12 x 10 x 5 inches (my estimate), it's not really all that portable. In a car, certainly, but I wouldn'… Read more
A handful of all-in-one home-theater projectors have hit the market over the last 18 months, and InFocus jumps into this interesting category with the InFocus Play Big IN1, an inexpensive DLP projector with an integrated DVD player and speaker to output sound. While the info on the unit is a little vague, InFocus says that they are also looking into having an iPod dock for playing back iPod videos, to go along with the DVD player "dock" that attaches to the bottom of the projector.
Here are the details so far:
Price: $499 (subject to change)
Availability: Spring … Read more
Creative Labs is delivering a wireless home audio solution for the Apple iPod in the form of two products: the Xdock Wireless and the X-Fi Wireless Receiver.
On the surface, the Xdock Wireless is an iPod dock with some better-than-average features, including composite and S-Video output (for photo and video playback on a TV) and optical digital audio output. The Xdock can output DTS surround sound to compatible A/V receivers (via the optical output) or utilize Creative's proprietary CMSS-3D virtual surround processing to deliver a surroundlike effect from stereo speakers or headphones. Moreover, Creative claims that its X-Fi … Read more
The big surprise at CES 2007 has been the dearth of major announcements about new home-audio products. Receivers with HDMI 1.3 and built-in decoding for next-gen lossless audio formats are nowhere to be seen. But at least one receiver has brought something new to the table: Pioneer's VSX-1017TXV is the first model we've seen that offers built-in compatibility with both XM and Sirius satellite radio services. (In fact, it's one of three receivers in Pioneer's 2007 line that offers the dual-satellite option.)
As evidenced by the model number, the 1017TXV is just an evolutionary upgrade … Read more
Crave first spotted this one a few weeks ago, and now Intellitouch has announced its inexpensive, wireless "whole house" iPod speaker system.
The Eos system consists of an iPod dock/base station with integrated speakers and a subwoofer, and separate Wi-Fi speakers. The base station can transmit audio to as many as four wireless speakers; each speaker has a removable power supply so that you can mount it directly on a power outlet or place it on any surface like a bookshelf system. Intellitouch claims that in contrast to existing wireless speaker systems, its GigaWave technology can transmit … Read more