By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
Salt Lake City, Utah -- Control4 unveiled five new A/V-distribution products, including its first HDMI matrix switcher, an audio matrix switcher, a new four-zone audio amplifier, and a new eight-zone amp.
They’re promoted as suitable for retrofit and new-build projects.
The lineup, shipping in September, consists of a $6,900 HDMI matrix switcher with HDBaseT, a $350 HDBaseT receiver, a $1,500 audio matrix switcher, a $1,100 four-zone amplifier, and a $1,400 eight-zone amp.
The HDMI switcher is an 8x8 model that transmits full 1080p 2D or 3D video, multichannel audio, Ethernet, and RS-232 (Serial) and infrared (IR) control signals over a single Cat 5e or Cat 6 cable. Besides eight HDMI inputs and eight HDBaseT outputs, the device also features two local HDMI outputs, eight LAN passthrough ports, eight stereo audio outputs, eight RS-232 ports, eight bi-directional IR control ports, and an Ethernet port for control. Advanced setup options include EDID (extended display identification data) management to ensure reliable switching among sources, plus a zone-lock feature that dedicates a specific video source to a specific zone.
It incorporates Control4 Simple Device Discovery Protocol (SDDP) to speed-up setup. Once the HDMI Matrix is connected to a home network, Control4 dealers can use Composer Pro computer software to automatically install the correct driver.
The HDBaseT Receiver accepts the incoming video, audio, and control signals from the switcher via a single Cat 5e or Cat 6 cable and breaks them out into individual HDMI, LAN, and two-way RS-232 and IR outputs at the endpoint.
For audio distribution, the audio matrix switcher is a 16-input/16-output analog audio matrix with input gain controls for proper source level balancing, audio sensing inputs that provide control and feedback to the Control4 system, and ½dB volume steps for smooth volume control. The switch also supports SDDP for auto-discovery and quicker setup in Composer Pro.
The two new multizone audio amplifiers, available in 4- and 8-zone versions, feature a global stereo line input and output, input gain controls for both global and individual zone inputs, and selection switches for zone or global input.
The eight-zone model delivers 30 watts per channel into 8Ω in stereo mode, or 60 watts per channel into 8Ω when bridged. The four-zone model 45 per channel in stereo mode into 8 ohms and 90 watts per channel bridged into 8 ohms. Both amplifiers are stable to 4 ohms.
Via zone pre-amp outputs or global “bus” input/outputs, dealers can combine multiple amplifiers to deliver audio to large zones or outdoor zones that use many speakers. The Class D amps also feature input-signal sensing and 12-volt trigger operation.
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