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Yamaha Adds AVR, Blu-ray, Wireless Dock

6/15/2010 12:32:58 PM Eastern

Buena Park, Calif. - Yamaha launched its first wireless iPod dock
for A/V receivers, first Blu-ray player to stream movies from the Internet, and
its first A/V receiver with out-of-the-box HDMI 1.4a inputs and outputs.

The Blu-ray player is the $329-suggested BD-S667, which joins
other Blu-ray players starting at a suggested $599. The new Profile 2.0 model
streams Netflix movies and TV episodes via a wired Ethernet connection. It's
also Yamaha's first player certified by the Digital Living Network Alliance
(DLNA).

The player also plays music and video files stored on USB sticks
or on disc in AVCHD, WMV, JPEG (HD), MP3 and WMA formats. It will play JPEG
slideshows with MP3 audio soundtracks.

Other features include 1080p/24kHz-compatible HDMI video output,
decoding of all Blu-ray surround formats, direct 192kHz/24-bit audio DAC,
x.v.Color and Deep Color compatibility, as well as 1080p up-scaling of DVDs,
photos and home movies. Its Internet connectivity also makes it possible to
download future firmware updates. As a 2.0 player, it supports BD-Live and BonusView
features. It comes with embedded memory as well as a USB port for USB memory
sticks.

The player works with Yamaha A/V receivers' (AVR) Scene mode
feature, which uses four preset buttons (BD/DVD, TV, CD and radio) to activate
the receiver's appropriate inputs, A/V features and surround mode combinations
for the selected source.

The new $599 AVR, the 7x90-watt RX-V667, is among the AVRs with
Scene mode support. It also features as six HDMI 1.4a inputs and one HDMI 1.4a
output to support all 3D video formats in the HDMI 1.4a spec. It also features
HDMI's audio return channel (ARC) function.

The AVR joins three new $249- to $479-suggested AVRs launched
earlier this year with HDMI 1.4 inputs and outputs. Those HDMI connections require
a firmware
upgrade
to support the side-by-side (half) and top-and-bottom formats that
broadcasters are adopting as well as the formats used for current 3D Blu-ray and
game content.

The latest AVR, which decodes all Blu-ray surround formats, add Yamaha's
Cinema DSP 3D post-processing technology to add two front-height channels to a
5.1 speaker system, bringing down that capability in price point. The AVR also
features Virtual Presence Speaker processing to produce virtual height channels
in a 5.1 or 7.1 speaker system that lacks height speakers.

Other AVR features include analog-to-HDMI 1080p video up-scaling
and an onscreen GUI that overlays HD and 3D content.

The three AVRs unveiled earlier this year brought multiple features
down in price. Features available at $249, down from last year's $379, include automatic
lip sync, HDMI repeater and support for 120Hz PC refresh rates, not just
Blu-ray's 24Hz refresh rates. Decoding of all Blu-ray surround formats and YPAO
room-acoustics correction technology continue to start at $379 with the new
models, and 1080p up-scaling of analog-video inputs remained at the $479 price
point.

The new $379 and $479 models add HDMI 1.4's ARC function out of
the box.

For iPod/iPhone docking, the company is launching its first add-on
wireless dock system for AVRs. The $149-suggested YID-W10 with yAired wireless
technology features a wireless sender/receiver that snaps onto an iPhone or
iPod to transmit stored audio and metadata to AVRs. Audio from stored videos or
games can be transmitted to the AVR in sync with video playback and game play,
the company said. iPod-stored song titles are displayed on the AVR's front
panel as well as on a connected TV's onscreen display.

Additional details were unavailable.