CEDIA Award Winners
Nov 1, 2005 12:00 PM, By Mark Johnson
Whole-house control dominates CEDIA EXPO 2005.
In a word, yikes! That about sums up the 2005 CEDIA EXPO. The show has outgrown its home at the Indy convention center/RCA Dome. Exhibitors' booths were set up in every conceivable location, with overflow into the Marriott across the street and some manufacturers setting up shop at other surrounding hotels. Since booths were everywhere, navigating the show was confusing at times (and the map in the show guide was a challenge for my 51-year-old eyes). But in three days I was able to traverse all of the exhibit areas. Next year the show will be held in Denver. All under one roof with exhibitors grouped by category would be my vote.
Each year, CEDIA recognizes the best in the industry at its annual Electronic Lifestyles awards banquet. This year, Billilynne Keller, executive director of CEDIA, was presented with the Lifetime Achievement award. And dealers, installers, manufacturers' reps, and manufacturers were all recognized for their contributions to the industry. Installations were acknowledged as well, with awards going to individual installs that ranged in value from less than $60,000 to more than $3 million.
So what about the show? CEDIA this year was all about whole-house control. Many of the new product offerings were control systems or devices. In fact, at the banquet for the 2005 Electronic Lifestyles awards, held at the Indiana Roof Ballroom, three of the five products that received the Manufacturers' Excellence Awards for best new product were control products. The control winners were AMX Amenities Solution from AMX, the Control4 Composer from Control4, and the iHome Multi-Center from Audio Design Associates. The Runco CineWide with AutoScope and BTX EZ-9 were the other winners in the best new product category. This year's Electronic Lifestyles Manufacturers' Excellence Awards for best new product, sponsored by Sound & Video Contractor, included products priced from $32 up to $80,000. The products chosen ranged from sophisticated and high-tech in design and manufacture to ingenious in their simple design and efficient application.
The high roller at $80,000, AMX's Amenities Solution is a service with accompanying hardware and software designed for large-scale implementation in multi-unit dwellings (for example, in high-rise residential buildings or condo complexes). The solution provides for the selection of personalized concierge services, activity scheduling, maintenance requests, and local information from a menu on AMX touchpanels installed in the individual residential units.
The Control4 Composer is a software package that allows users to design (remotely or onsite) and monitor Control4 home automation systems. The system features templates for common automated functions like lighting scenes or scheduling of automation, customizable sequencing, and drag-and-drop device icons.
The iHome Multi-Center is a three-function entertainment server, a two-zone music server, a Microsoft Media Center PC with an HDTV video card, and an IP-based system server for control of an Audio Design Associates entertainment system. The iHome Multi-Center also features a hot-swappable onboard backup drive.
Runco's CineWide with AutoScope uses a combination of software, electronics, and motorized anamorphic optics to provide CinemaScope widescreen reproduction of movies that were originally filmed in the 2.35:1 format. This provides the ability to display the image over the total area of a wide screen, eliminating the upper and lower horizontal black masking bars.
The EZ-9 (CD-DB9MEZ and CD-DB9FEZ) connectors from BTX represent the low end of the retail price scale, but are perhaps some of the most valuable pieces of equipment listed here because they help make the installation process more efficient. The EZ-9 uses a terminal block that eliminates the need to solder D-Sub nine-pin connectors. It fits in a standard D-Sub hood.
Technology, utility, and support were primary factors that show attendees considered while casting their votes for this year's recipients.
Web Expanded: Products From The Show Floor
Genelec showed two surround systems, the first designed for any surround sound environment measuring up to 2,500 cubic feet and the second system is designed for environments up to 4,000 cubic feet.
The first system comprises five Genelec HT205 two-way, bi-amplified active monitors, and one Genelec HTS3B Active Home Theater subwoofer. The HTS3B integrates a 200W amplifier and features a frequency response of 18Hz to 120Hz, and a maximum SPL of 114dB. The HT205 features a 5in. woofer and a 3/4in. tweeter loaded with Genelec’s DCW (Directivity Control Waveguide Technology) and incorporates an internal electronic crossover, room response equalizers, and two 40W amplifiers in an aluminum enclosure. Color options are white, silver, or matte black finish.
The second system consists of five HT208B Active loudspeakers and one Genelec HTS4B series Active subwoofer. The HT208B employs an 8in. woofer and 1in. metal dome tweeter loaded with Genelec’s DCW. The HT208B includes an integrated electronic crossover, two 120W amplifiers, room response equalizers, and RCA, as well as balanced XLR inputs. The HTS4B Active Home Theater subwoofer is equipped with a 12in. driver and radiators, and an integrated 400W amplifier. Frequency response is 18Hz to 120Hz, with a maximum SPL of 118dB.
Chief Manufacturing announced the new line of iC Mounting Solutions, compatible with almost all applications and fit most sizes of flat panel TVs or projectors. Chief also introduced new mounts for flat panel TVs. Reaction series (medium and large TVs 26in. to 65in.) swing arm wall mounts provides lateral shift and post-installation height adjustment. The CableTrac System features channeled cable management to provide quick and easy routing of cables through the mount arms. The Fusion series (medium and large TVs 26in. to 65in.) fixed and tilt wall mounts feature the Rapid Level System for hands-free leveling. Integrated lateral shift provides up to 4.5in. of shift left or right of 16in. center. The lateral shift feature also allows for 16in. to 24in. center stud system mounting. Cynergy series (small and medium TVs up to 40in.) swing arm mounts provides maximum extension or folds flat against the wall.
Arena from Tannoy comprises four satellite loudspeakers, a dedicated center channel loudspeaker, and an active subwoofer. Accessories provided include grilles, speaker cable, spikes, and spike protection boots for use on polished surfaces.
The satellite speakers feature a miniature (5in.) version of their point source Dual Concentric drive unit that is integrally molded into the baffle. The center channel loudspeaker is equipped with a supplementary bass driver to augment power handling. The satellite and center channel speaker enclosures are constructed in cast aluminum, and are magnetically shielded. The active subwoofer features a patented high-efficiency power amplifier circuit. The subwoofer (250mm. to 10in. driver) provides various orientation options to optimize acoustic coupling.
Tannoy also showed the iC6 DC compact ceiling monitor system, based on a 6.5in. (165mm) point source, constant directivity Dual Concentric transducer. The unit is suitable for both commercial and residential applications. A metal C-ring is supplied for attaching the unit to a variety of ceiling materials. An optional shallow back can is also available. The metal grille and mounting frame can be painted to blend with any type of décor. And Tannoy has added the iw62TDC to its recently launched in-wall range. The iw62TDC is ideally suited to larger commercial installations such as restaurants and bars where a higher output is required.
Peerless Industries provided an early look at its Pull-Out Swivel wall mount for 26in. to 50in. flat panels. Peerless also unveiled its full line of SmartMount universal flat, tilt, articulating, and pivot wall mounts for LCD and plasma displays.
Sennheiser Electronic Corporation introduced two FM wireless headphone systems, the RS 130 and the RS 140, incorporating 900MHz wireless transmission from base-station to headphone. The transmitters features Sennheiser’s Intelligent Auto Tuning system, which automatically chooses the best of three available base-to-headset channels.
Both base stations incorporate on-hook charging for their headsets’ integral NiMH batteries. Battery life from a single full charge is up to 23 hours for the RS 140 and 22 hours for the RS 130.
Sennheiser also debuted two noise-canceling headphones, the PXC300 and PXC150. The PXC300 uses Sennheiser’s NoiseGard Advance system, active-noise-canceling circuit design that eliminates the potential for audible hiss. Also susceptibility to interference from cell phones and other radio-frequency sources is reduced. Effective noise cancellation is as much as 15dB below 1kHz.
Crestron launched the Adagio line, which consists of a whole house audio distribution system, a home entertainment system, a digital audio server, and an audio room expander.
The Adagio Audio Distribution system (ADAD) accommodates six audio zones, featuring 12 45W channels of audio. ADAD also offers four stereo audio inputs, with loop-through for expansion and built-in tuners for AM and FM radio, and XM satellite. The Adagio Audio Server (ADAS) can be added as a source, providing full control of the music library without any programming or configuration.
The Adagio Audio Distribution System (ADES) offers additional sources and control ports. The ADES features 10 looping stereo audio inputs. The ADES provides variable or fixed pre-amp outputs for each of the six zones. ADES doubles the number of IR and RS 232 ports providing expanded control capability. ADES also features three dual-tuner card slots (for a total of six internal radio sources) that can be populated by optional cards: AM/FM + XM Satellite; AM/FM + Sirius Satellite; and dual AM/FM tuner.
The Adagio Audio Expander (ADAE) is for applications that require more than six audio zones. Up to three audio expanders can be added to an Adagio system for a total of 24 independent zones. The ADAE also provides 10 loop-through stereo inputs, 12 45W channels of audio, and six Cresnet ports.
The Adagio Audio Server (ADAS) is self-recognizing so no programming is needed. Three models are available: 80GB, 160GB, and the largest, 250GB. ADAS handles MP3 and WAV formats and features a dedicated audio board with professionally rated A-to-D converters. The ADAS runs on an embedded XP operating system.
ELAN Home Systems debuted its TheaterPoint Home Theater speaker line, which encompasses the dual 5.25in. and 6.6in. in-wall/in-ceiling LCR, two dipoles, and a pivoting 8in. in-wall/in-ceiling speaker. Also included are two cabinet loudspeakers, dual 5.25in. and 6.5in. models, and a 12in. active sub-woofer. ELAN also brought two new D series digital power amplifiers, the D400 2-channel amp and the D660 6-channel amp.
Digital Projection International (DPI) showed the 10000HD R. The 10000HD R, billed as the world's lightest and smallest 2Kx1K resolution three-chip DLP projector, provides 10,000 ANSI lumen output and contrast of up to 2000:1.
DPI also announced the addition of a new 720p single-chip DLP home entertainment display to its iVision series, the iVision HD-X.
The iVision HD-X delivers contrast of 4000:1 and up to 1000 ANSI lumens through Texas Instruments’ new DarkChip3 DMD. The native 16x9 aspect ratio projector is equipped with a standard 1.75 to 2.25:1 zoom lens, but can also be outfitted with either a 1.0:1 fixed, wide-angle lens or a long-throw, 2.5 to 3.5:1 zoom lens.
DPI announced the addition of the iVision 20 series of compact single-chip DLP projectors. The 6-lb. iVision 20 projectors feature the latest DC3 DMD technology from Texas Instruments. The units also include vertical lens shift capability. Standard inputs include DVI, component, RGB, composite, and S-Video.
Omnimount provided its "All-In-One" solution with its Wishbone series of flat-panel cantilever mounts. Available small, medium, large, and extra-large models to fit a wide variety of display sizes. Omnimount also premiered the G-3FP flat-panel floor stand, which provides swivel and height adjustments as well as tilt options for displays from 37in. to 60in. Also making its CEDIA debut was Omnimount's Twist LCD swivel to support 13in. to 26in. LCDs.
Tripp Lite used the opportunity to introduce six new UPS systems and two power conditioning centers, including one designed for flat-panel televisions and front-screen projectors.
Sencore brought its DA795 DigiPro digital audio analyzer and it SP395 SoundPro audio integrator for commercial audio applications
Kramer Electronics announced the TP-41 component video and S/PDIF digital audio transmitter, and TP-42 component video and S/PDIF digital audio receiver at CEDIA. The TP-41 transmitter and TP-42 receiver route component video and digital audio signals over Cat-5 cable. The TP-41 transmitter/encoder includes an analog component video input and a digital audio input (S/PDIF), all on RCA connectors. The range of the Cat-5 output to the TP-42 receiver/decoder easily exceeds 300ft. The TP-41 has individual level controls for the Y, U, and V (also known as Y, Pb, and Pr or Y, B-Y, and R-Y) signals, as well as audio level controls. The TP-42 receives the Cat-5 signal, decodes it and outputs it to the YUV and S/PDIF RCA outputs. The TP-42 has individual level and EQ controls for the Y, U, and V signals, as well as level and EQ controls for audio.
Fluke Networks announced the CableIQ residential qualifier, cable qualification tester. CableIQ residential aualifier provides a way to document that systems are defect-free and compliant with the residential TIA-570B standard. Its qualification test will confirm that any cabling installation will support voice, VoIP 10/100/1000 Ethernet, and Cat-5.
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