Touching Base in Orlando at EHX
Here’s some of what we heard and saw at the recent EHX:
At an outpost in Demo Alley, Dolby’s Craig Eggers demonstrated the company’s newest sound-processing technology, Dolby ProLogic IIz, using the Onkyo TX-SR607 (available soon at $599) – the world’s first A/V receiver to include it. DPL IIz, said Eggers, adds “height” perception to movie sound, decoding signals already existing in the software, for immersive listening. He added that the standard will also permit encoding of “height channel” information into gaming software for a more beneficial experience. Also used in the demo was Atlantic Technology’s 8200 loudspeaker system and a Vutec Vision X screen.
ELAN Home Systems and its sister brands, HomeLogic, Sunfire and ATON, kicked off its “Takin’ it to the Streets” Spring 2009 Road Show. HomeLogic’s Joe Lautner explained that 200 three-hour dealer sessions that will showcase the brands’ 30 newest products in 50 cities – an outreach that is expected to touch up to 4,500 dealers. Also, the HomeLogic iPhone/iPodTouch Mobile Control interface is now available as a free downloadable iTunes application. The application, he said, once downloaded, can instantly access a live remote demo at HomeLogic that integrators can use to demo HomeLogic’s systems’ capabilities in real time. He also said that ELAN’s Elios built-in speakers and the Sunfire TGM-100 Media Server had begun shipping.
Chris Westfall, vice president of sales for NuVo Technologies, said the company’s driving philosophy is that “value always matters, even to the high-ticket client.” He said that is what informs the NuVo’s latest design efforts, which include the new Music Port Server – “the thinking A/V installer’s way to provide a network solution.” Its built-in hard drive can play back up to four audio sources simultaneously, and it has Internet radio streaming capability. Company president David Rodarte said that tooling has been finalized for the NuVo Renovia system, first shown at the 2008 CEDIA Expo and designed for retrofit applications – an area of custom that holds great promise for integrators, as, unlike in the builders market, “there is almost no residential contraction in that market.” Since Expo, Renovia’s Zone Amplifier component has been tweaked; it now uses a magnetized box with an internal metal plate that acts as a heat dissipater.