A new generation of AV gear including new recievers and wireless speakers have been rolled out at the CEDIA Expo in the USA with most of them now including easy to configure home network capabilities and the ability to interface with iPods and other external sources such as Internet radio, networked PCs external storage devices, and flash-memory drives.
Among the vendors to show new AV gear are Harman/Kardon Integra, Yamaha and Marantz.
Harman Kardon is launching its first AVR with Internet radio and PC networking, Integra is expanding its selection of HD Radio-equipped components to four from three, and Yamaha is expanding its selection to five from two. Two of the new Yamaha models are the industry’s first AVRs to incorporate iTunes Tagging when an iPod dock is connected. Digital Radio is set to be launched in Australia early in 2009.
Harman Kardon has adopted the Dolby Volume and Internet radio technology. According to TWICE Magazine The Dolby audio-processing technology maintains a consistent volume level when TV channels are changed, a TV program transitions to a commercial, and video inputs are switched. It also dynamically compensates for the human ear’s lower sensitivity to bass and treble sounds as volume levels decrease within a program.
The 7.2-channel 7.1-channel models expand the brand’s selection of A/V receivers with internal decoding of all Blu-ray surround-sound formats, HDMI Deep Color support, and new graphical on-screen menu system to four models. Both new models, which complete the brand’s 2008 AVR lineup, also come bundled with H/K’s Bridge II iPod-docking station, previously bundled only with the AVR 354. With the Bridge, a docked iPod or iPhone can be operated by the AVRs’ remote control, and iPod operating menus and iPod-stored video will appear on the TV through the three AVRs. The menu will also appear on the receivers’ front-panel display.
The two new AVRs also feature the brand’s new industrial design, which appeared for the first time on two stereo receivers shipped earlier this year.