Audio News for October 24, 2014

Bluesound Upgrades Their Multiroom Audio System – The Vault wireless music server made in Ontario can now download and pay for hi-res music files direct from HDTracks in multiple zones. Previously users had to download the files first to a PC hard drive, they manually drag and drop them into Vault. The music-streaming service Murfie was also added to the list of streaming services, and other updates added support for local library playlists, folder browsing, and cross-browsing for particular tracks between the music services and local libraries. Murfie has a vinyl and CD inventory of 500,000 new and used albums and streams from the cloud.

Audyssey Enhances Their Music Processing App –  The Audyssey Music Player app has been updated for iOS devices to optimize audio performance of more models of headphones, and to optimize the performance of select Bluetooth speakers. The free app will optimize the playback of Apple devices thru 300 different headphone models and thru about 25 different Bluetooth speakers. Additional models are in the works. The app uses 32-bit processing to tailor sound output to the acoustic characteristics of a particular headphone or speaker. A 30-minute free trial lets listeners hear the difference on their speakers or headphones before spending $1.99 to purchase the algorithm for their particular phones or $2.99 for their speakers. The technology can also be integrated into other mobile apps, streaming music services, in-device media players and games.

Avi-on Labs and Jasco Team for Home Automation – Using a crowd-funding campaign, Avi-on Labs hopes to bring its Bluetooth mesh-network home automation products to North America. They will include GE brand products from Jasco, which makes a Bluetooth Smart Light Dimmer, Smart Light Switches and Smart Plugs. They are joined by an on-wall, battery-powered movable light switch made by Avi-on, and a Bluetooth Smart Light bulb.

Koss Fall Intros – Koss, who last month lauched new Bluetooth headphones and a portable Bluetooth speaker, has unveiled two new headphones. There are an over-ear (SP540, $149) and an on-air model (SP330, $129). Both can be folded for storage, are reinfoced with anodized aluminum, and are padded with memory foam.

Sonos Sues Denon Over Heos Wireless System –  Sonos has filed a patent-infringement lawsuit against D+M Group over the Heos wireless multiroom audio system launched earlier this year by Denon. The suit cites three technology patents and one design patent. Sonos also complained about copy-cat marketing and branding, alleging that Denon’s naming convention for its Heos speaker line closely resembles theirs, as does Denon’s web site. Sonos’ co-founder stated that “We are not asking for a royalty or other license fee – we just want Denon to buld an experience that isn’t copying ours.”

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