By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
Crestron is maintaining its home-theater presence with next-generation Procise-series components and an updated version of its Adagio Digital Media System (ADMS) Intermedia Delivery Media Server, which searches across physical and online sources to find selected movies and music.
In Procise home-theater gear, the company plans November shipments of the $9,000-suggested 7.3-channel PSPHD surround processor and companion $9,000 Proamp-7X400 Class D amplifier, which delivers 7x400watts into 8-ohm loads or 7x700 watts into 4-ohm loads.
The processor is the company's first preamp/surround processor to incorporate decoders for all Blu-ray surround codecs and first with HDCP-supported HDMI. It also adds these Audyssey technologies: MultEQ room correction, Dynamic Volume to volume-level when consumers switch sources or commercials interrupt TV programs, and Dynamic EQ to maintain bass and treble perception and surround-channel audibility when consumers turn down the volume. It also features built-in DVD-Audio/SACD decoding, six HDMI inputs that support 7.1-channel HD audio and 1080p60 video, and dual front-panel VFDs, which display a spectrum analyzer and analog-style VU meter.
The processor will also control and monitor the connected Procise amplifier, which also connects to Crestron systems and features balanced XLR inputs.
The new $9,000-suggested ADMS was shown initially at the 2008 CEDIA Expo but has been upgraded to offer simplified easy on-line access to more video services than before. Shipment is now scheduled for October.
The $9,000-suggested ADMS combines 7.1-channel preamp/processor, Profile 2.0 Blu-ray player, and media appliance that searches across multiple physical and online media for selected music and videos. It displays search results on a connected TV or touchscreen. The searched media include content stored on an embedded 1TB RAID 5 hard drive, movie discs stored in an optional $9,000 CD/DVD/BD changer, content stored on an optional $8,000 4TB RAID 5 network-attached storage device, content stored on a networked PC, and content available on selected video-streaming and video-download sites. Consumers who search for an “Iron Man” video by typing the movie title into an optional $300 wireless keyboard would see results from multiple sources displayed onscreen.
The ADMS also incorporates a Web browser to any Web site, including content services not supported natively in the ADMS software.
Content stored on one ADMS and its attached Blu-ray changers can be streamed to other ADMS systems in other rooms via an Ethernet network. DVD and Blu-ray movies can be streamed one at a time via an Ethernet network, and multiple streams of less-bandwidth-intensive video can be transmitted simultaneously.
In its first iteration, the ADMS would have downloaded music and video from natively hosted Amazon and the HD Giants applications. The updated model downloads video from Amazon for purchase or rental and streams video from natively hosted Hulu, Joost, Vimeo, Metacafe and YouTube. Crestron also anticipates natively hosting NetFlix's streaming-video application, but the service can be accessed for now via the ADMS Web browser, which can also access the Rhapsody music service.
Although music can't be downloaded from authorized sites via the ADMS interface, consumers would be able to use the device's Web browser to access authorized download services. Consumers could also download music to the PC and transfer it to the ADMS via a home network.
The device doesn't rip movie discs for storage on its HDD, but DVD content ripped by a PC using AnyDVD software could be transferred to the ADMS. Up to five optional ADC-200BR 200-disc Blu-ray changers can be added to manage a CD, DVD and BD library of up to 1,000 discs. The changer also up-scales DVD to 1080p
As a surround processor, it decodes all surround format authorized for use on DVD discs and Blu-ray discs.
In other news, the company said its Prodigy wireless home-control system, based on the wireless ZigBee Pro control standard, could create a four-zone home-control multi-room-audio system with wireless dimming and light switching, wireless thermostat, wireless in-wall audio keypads and touchscreens, for as little as $4,000 to $5,000, excluding installation and speakers.
This TWICE webinar, hosted by senior editor Alan Wolf, will take a look at what may be the hottest CE products at retail that will be sold during the all-important fourth quarter. Top technologies, market strategies and industry trends will be discussed with industry analysts and executives.