Audio News for October 10, 2014

New Marantz AVR Preamp Has Dolby Atmos Surround – The AV7702 comes with Marantz’s own-developed high-definition HDAMs, built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, plus Internet radio, Spotify connect, Pandora, SiriusXM, and AirPlay. Music files may be MP3, WMA, FLAC HD, ALAC, WAV192/24 & AAC. There is an iPod digital-compatible USB input and the phono MM input for vinyl fans. Complete compatibilty with the latest HD displays HD sources is assured.  There are four DSP engines, capable of handling up to 11.2 channels to fully support Audyssey DSX, DTS Neo:X 11.1 and the latest decoding technology from Dolby Atmos. It supports gapless, DSD and AIFF for full enjoyment of classical recordings. The AV7702 can do 7, 9 or 11-channel Dolby Atmos layout using 5.1.2, 5.1.4,7.1.2, 7.1.4 or 9.1.2 configurations using either ceiling-mounted or special Atmos-enabled speakers. There is also a 13.2-channel pre-out for extreme versatility in amplication options. The Audyssey Pro ready room correction suite gaurantees that every seat in the room is a sweet spot for audio, and Audyssey LFC reduces the transmission of low frequency sound thru walls. Available this month, the multichannel preamp retails for $1999.

Best Buy Adds Home-Automation Departments – More than 400 Best Buy stores will have home-automation departments with more than 100 products from established vendors and startups. They will have security cameras, monitoring services, smart thermostats, smart lighting, smart locks, garage door accessories and wireless on-off switches. Networking equipment plus TV, Internet, phone and security services from cable companies will be spotlit.  The new department as been created to help customers to “understand and compare their options and improve home security, save energy costs and simplify the management of their homes.”

Sinclair and Technicolor ATSC 3.0 UHD OTA Telecast – An experimental transmission system in Baltimore delivered an industry first by using their ATSC 3.0 UHD testbed platform and receiving an over-the-air signal from it. The platform includes Scalable HEVC, MPEG-H audio and MPEG-MMT transport and means that broadcasters will be able to deliver the highest quality content via UHD live broadcast in a simultaneous transmission to consumers both at home and watching on mobile devices.

Pair of B&W Dada Baby Speakers Auctioned for $3,277 – While some collectors hoard vintage radios or phonographs, others collect vintage speakers. One of these collectors successfully bid in an online auction for a pair of rare six-inch-tall Dada Baby speakers. Only 100 pairs were made in 1966 by Bowers & Wilkins with the artist Dadara, and half were lost in a fire. They are pink and have B&W’s signature round speaker as a head, which rotates to control dispersion. Wiring to each speaker plugs into the “babies’” belly buttons to make the wires look like umbilical cords.

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