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NetStreams Demos IP Video Distribution System

DENVER — NetStreams flows into the CEDIA Expo with a demonstration of what it calls the world’s first IP-based video-distribution system, which will get exposure alongside a product that connects the company’s IP-based DigiLinX multiroom-audio system to a home PC network.

The DigiLinX-PC bridge, called the Streaming Music Manager, will let consumers access and control music stored on any PC or attached storage device from a DigiLinX in-wall touch screen or keypad.

The IP video-distribution system will also be controlled from DigiLinX in-wall controllers and will be available in the first quarter following a prototype demonstration here at the Expo.

NetStreams uses Ethernet wiring and IP to transport content throughout the house to simplify installation and eliminate signal loss. Music converted to IP is transmitted to in-wall decoder/amplifiers that incorporate built-in MP3 and wave decoders and digital signal processing. The modules in turn power in-wall or in-ceiling speakers.

The video-distribution system sends video from centrally located A/V servers, DVD players, DVRs, or HD set-top boxes to clients that in turn connect to video displays. The video system is capable of shipping multiple simultaneous 1,080i streams simultaneously to the clients, the company said.

The video system works like this:

An encoder connected to each video source encodes analog video streams in real time, turns them into uncompressed IP streams, and sends them over a Gigabit Ethernet network to the clients. The encoders accept 1,080i signals though component analog inputs. S- and composite-video inputs are also included.

The PC-bridging Streaming Music Manager, priced at about $3,000, connects the company’s IP-based DigiLinX multiroom-audio system to a home PC network, enabling consumers to access and control music stored on any PC or network-storage device from a DigiLinX in-wall touchscreen or keypad. The storage devices could be PC-docked iPods, USB drives and USB-connected backup HDD drives.

With the Music Manager installed, the PCs’ WAV or MP3 files will be integrated with the music files stored on select dedicated music servers into a single menu appearing on the company’s in-wall controllers. AAC and WMA files must be converted to MP3 or wave to be streamed.

The Music Manager, which shipped Sept. 1, streams up to six compressed and uncompressed music streams simultaneously to different rooms from PCs or from Escient, Imerge and ReQuest music servers connected to a DigiLinX system, which also streams music from connected legacy devices such as CD players and tuners.