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Russound Persevering In Down Market

7/26/2010 06:11:56 AM Eastern

Newmarket, N.H. -
Russound plans to ship a variety of new multi-room-audio products in the coming
months despite what it said was a 27 percent drop in industrywide factory-level
multi-room-audio sales, including speakers, during the two years ending in 2009.

 Here's what the brand revealed so far:

Collage updates:
In a couple of months, Russound will offer a firmware update to add Radiotime's
Internet-radio-station aggregation service to its Collage Media and Intercom
system, which already streams the Rhapsody on-demand music service.

Next year, the company plans to offer an
iPod/iPhone dock for its Collage system to turn an iPod into a home-wide music
source. Also next year, Collage will get a Source Bridge
to connect security cameras as well as legacy sources such as cable settop
boxes, whose audio could then be output to other rooms.

Touchpoint
firmware upgrades:
The TCH1 Touchpoint links a Russound R-NET multi-room-audio
system to a home Wi-Fi network, serving up a web page that enables system
control from a Wi-Fi-equipped iPhone or Touch. With a firmware upgrade now
available, consumers can control an R-NET system from an iPad. The upgrade also
adds such features as a back button, ability to display SMS3 music-server album
art on an iPhone or iPad, and more ways to remotely search for music, including
playlist and genre.

X-series amps:
Three models in Russound's first series of two-channel amps are targeted to
single-zone installs, including home barrooms and outdoor zones.  Three amps feature front-mounted volume and
balance controls. The models are rated at 2x60, 2x80, and 2x150 watts into 8
ohms and are bridgeable to mono. They're also 4-ohm stable. Pricing and ship
dates were unavailable.

Outdoor rock
speakers:
Four new models available in three colors will be more efficient than
their predecessors and feature 8-inch woofers compared to the previous models'
6-inch woofers. One model will be the brand's first single-speaker-stereo rock
speaker.

Shipments are planned for the fourth quarter at
dealer and MAP prices expected to be the same as the current models.

Touchscreen
controller:
The Linux-based 3.5-inch TS2-C3, due around November, will replace
a 3.7-inch model and add active TFT display versus CTSN display, a faster
processor to improve graphics, and ability to support all features in C-series
multizone controller/amplifiers. It's expected to retail for 30 percent less
than its $1,299-suggested predecessor.

C-series multizone
controller:
The six-source, six-zone MCA-C3 features AM/FM RDS tuner,
12x20-watt amp, zone grouping, and new protocol to streamline integration with
third-party home-control systems. It's due at the end of September or early
October to join the higher powered eight-source eight-zone MCA-C5. Pricing was
unavailable.

The MCA-C3 is touted as Russound's first green
system because its draws less than a watt in standby mode and ships in
packaging that doesn't use Styrofoam.

Acclaim outdoor
speakers:
The first outdoor speakers in the value-oriented Acclaim 5 speaker
series ship in July. The four models can be mounted horizontally or vertically
on a house, in corners and on poles. They're more efficient than previous
Russound models and also double as indoor bookshelf speakers. The cabinets are
sealed, but their efficiency and crossover design deepen bass response and
output without resorting to a bass port that can let water, dirt and insects
get inside, the company said. Three models are priced from $199 to $349/pair. A
single-speaker-stereo model is $249 each.

 

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