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Mackie CR3 and CR4

Mackie has just launched the Creative Reference Multimedia Monitor Series that is aimed at providing studio-quality at a more affordable level.  The new series of monitiors includes two models — the CR3 and CR4.  The CR3 uses a 3-inch woofer, while the CR4 uses a 4-inch woofer.  Both models provide high-frequencies via a 3/4-inch silk-dome tweeter. 

The new Mackie CR monitors use all-wood cabinets with custom-tuned rear ports.  A left/right speaker placement switch allows users to locate the volume control on the left or right depending on personal preference.  ON the front, a on/off/volume knob with a lighted power indication ring provides the necessary user control.  There is also a headphone jack provided, which allows straight comparsions of the monitor sound to the headphone sound.  

A full-set of connection cables are provided with the Mackie Creative Reference monitors and there is even a pair of acoustic isolation pads included.  Used in professional applications, acoustic isolation pads minimize unwanted bass buildup that can muddy a mix.  Plus, the pads’ angled design allow the user to tilt the monitors slightly up or down for more focused listening depending on their setup.

The new Mackie CR3 and CR4 Creative Reference Multimedia Monitors will be available this August at the following MRSP: CR3 at $129.99 U.S./pair; CR4 at $199.99/pair.  Look for more information at: http://www.mackie.com/.

 

Infinity Loudspeakers - 2014

HARMAN International Industries has just announced their new Infinity Reference Series of loudspeakers.  The complete Reference Series uses the CMMD (Ceramic Metal Matrix Diaphragm) transducer technology.  CMMD is a proprietary process that combines a ceramic surface to aluminum cones to provide an ideal stiffnes- to-weight ratio while helping to move resonances up in frequency and out of the pass-band of the drivers.  The three-way loudspeaker models R263, R253 and RC263 utilize a unique flat-piston CMMD midrange driver that helps reduce diffraction in the critical high and mid-frequency bands.  The 1-inch CMMD tweeter found in all full-range models is mated to an advanced waveguide.  

The RC263 center channel is unusual for its price range in that it is a three-way model. The flat-piston dedicated midrange driver is incorporated to provide clarity and precision in vocal reproduction.  The RC263 and the smaller RC252 center channel loudspeakers are sonically matched to the companion floorstanding, bookshelf, and surround speakers.

The RS152 Surround Channel loudspeaker is ideally suited for multi-channel music and home theater. It uses a patented Hemispherical Soundfield Technology (HST), which is designed to provide remarkably balanced coverage across a 180-degree hemispherical listening area with greater consistency then traditional, on-the-wall loudspeakers.  With integrated keyhole wall-mounting and slender design, the RS152 will easily integrate into any decor.  

The SUB R10 and SUB R12 powered subwoofers in the Infinity Reference Series start with a fiber-composite driver mated to a high-power digital amplifier.  The solid 0.75″ (19 mm) construction of the tuned-port subwoofer cabinet with its internal edge-to-edge windowpane bracing provides a firm foundation to reinforce the tight, punchy bass required for high-resolution digital surround and modern popular music.  A full complement of controls including variable crossover, level and selectable LF trim allows fine-tuning to suit any listening environment and personal taste.

Infinity Reference Series Loudspeakers Features:

  • Flat-piston midrange drivers in R263 and R253 floor-standing and RC263 center-channel speakers
  • CMMD™ tweeters with advanced waveguides
  • CMMD™ high-output woofers with tuned-port enclosures
  • Fiber-composite high-output subwoofers with tuned-port enclosures
  • Patented Hemispherical Soundfield Technology (HST) maintains consistent surround performance even when listening from far off to one side
  • Subwoofers feature level, crossover, phase, LF trim and auto power controls
  • Computer-optimized driver positioning and crossover network integration
  • Sleek, contemporary enclosure design
  • Waveguides and woofers feature black chrome trim rings
  • Rich black wood grain finish cabinetry with hidden fasteners
  • Proven acoustic superiority through rigorous testing and real-world evaluation
  • Designed and engineered in Northridge, California

MSRP (U.S.):

R152 2-way 5.25″ (130 mm) Bookshelf Loudspeaker MSRP: $399.95/pr
R162 2-way 6.25″ (165 mm) Bookshelf Loudspeaker MSRP: $499.95/pr
R253 3-way Dual 5.25″ (130 mm) Floorstanding Loudspeaker MSRP: $899.95/pr
R263 3-way Dual 6.5″ (165 mm) Floorstanding Loudspeaker MSRP: $1,099.95/pr
RC252 2.5-way Dual 5.25″ (130 mm) Center Channel Loudspeaker MSRP: $349.95
RC263 3-way Dual 6.5″ (165 mm) Center Channel Loudspeaker MSRP: $499.95
RS152 2-way 5.25″ (130 mm) On-wall Surround Loudspeaker MSRP: $499.95/pr
SUB R10 200-watt 10″ (250 mm) Powered Subwoofer MSRP: $499.95
SUB R12 300-watt 12″ (300 mm) Powered Subwoofer MSRP: $599.95

The new HARMAN Infinity Reference Series Loudspeakers are currently available.  Look for details at: http://www.infinityspeakers.com/.

Klipsch Reference Line (new)

Klipsch has announced thier new Reference Series, which includes six passive home theater speakers and two powered subwoofers.  The Klipsch Reference line will join the Klipsch Reference II Series.  The new Reference Series represent the initial and entry-level series in what will be a tiered approach to Reference home theater speakers to be completed in 2015.

Klipsch Reference consists of two floorstanding towers (R-28F and R-26F), two monitors (R-15M and R-14M), one center channel (R-25C), and one surround (R-14S). The line’s subwoofers include the R-10SW and R-12SW.

All of the Klipsch Reference loudspeakers come in brushed black polymer veneer finish and use Tractrix Horn technology and Linear Travel Suspension (LTS) aluminum tweeters for a clean and natural sound. Their LTS tweeters have been a hallmark in the previous Reference generations as well as the flagship Palladium Series and ensures minimized distortion for enhanced, detailed performance. The low-frequency response is produced by way of Injection Molded Graphite woofers.

The Klipsch Reference subwoofers also come in a black polymer veneer finish.  These subwoofers have font-firing drivers with Injection Molded Graphite woofers that are exceptionally light while being extremely rigid to provide remarkable low-frequency response with minimal cone breakup and distortion.  The built-in all-digital amplifier also delivers ample power with high efficiency and true-to-source accuracy in reproduction.

Klipsch Reference have a MSRP range of $698 U.S. to $898 U.S. for a pair of floorstanding speakers; $199 U.S. to $249 U.S. for a pair of monitors; $249 U.S. for a center channel; $279 U.S. for a pair of surrounds; and $349 U.S. to $449 U.S. for a subwoofer.

The Reference Unity strategy is a global initiative that will align the majority of its product offerings under the legendary Klipsch Reference Series.  The Klipsch Reference Series speakers and subwoofers are now available for purchase.  Look for more information at Klipsch.com.

THIEL

Thiel has just announced that their company headquarters has been moved to Nashville, TN area, as part of their brand revitalization, under new ownership. 

The new CEO of Thiel Audio, John Wittman, has made a number of statement about the “new” Thiel Audio.  Speaking about the move to Nashville, John has stated that, “Being a part of the Nashville community is paramount for Thiel, a city founded on making legendary music,”.

Wittman is assembling a diverse and talented team to advance the brand and acknolwedges that there is a need to balance the company’s history with the need for innovation.  The new executive management team includes Paul Fisher, Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing along with new hires in engineering, marketing, purchasing and operations, with more staffing to follow.  Thiel is retaining, long-time veterans Lana Ruth and Rob Gillum with a combined 40+ years of audio industry experience to run the customer service and repair departments from a new facility in Lexington, KY.

Wittman has stated that, “Our objective at Thiel first and foremost is to be a fresh and imaginative company, engineering and manufacturing premium products that represent outstanding craftsmanship as well as the highest levels of performance”.  Thiel is looking to develop new product to meet broader market segments that includes but is not limited to high performance audio, home theater and the custom installation channel.  Thiel is looking to broaden their consumer audience by establishing key relationships for the brand; making the line visible to luxury buyers as well as the traditional audiophile. Based on those initiatives, Thiel’s VP of Engineering Mark Mason is designing an entire new series of speakers to be unveiled in 2015. “Everyone at Thiel is energized to be a part of such a vital and legendary brand, with an opportunity to execute our vision for truly innovative premium products and services,” said Wittman.

For more information on Thiel Audio, please visit: http://www.thielaudio.com/.

Denon x-4100w

Denon has just announced two additions to its new X Series network AV receiver line the AVR-X4100W and AVR-X5200W.  Both come with the latest Dolby Atmos for the highest level of involvement.  

The new AVR-X4100W delivers 200 watts per channel and incorporates the highest resolution audio decoders like Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio, as well as DTS Neo:X, Audyssey DSX and Dolby Pro Logic IIz for an even more realistic surround experience using height or wide speakers. The AVR-X4100W features Denon’s own D.D.S.C.-HD circuit with renowned AL24 Processing Plus, and also has a Denon Link HD connection for jitter-free transmission from a supporting Denon Blu-ray player. This new receiver features the most advanced Audyssey MultEQ XT 32 (Pro ready) room calibration with Sub EQ HT and LFC.

The AVR-X4100W also includes Dolby Atmos which includes overhead channels.  Thanks to its four DSP (Digital Sound Processing) engines, the AVR-X4100W has enough processing power to run an Audyssey calibrated nine channel Dolby Atmos layout.  By adding an additional 2-channel power amplifier, the Dolby Atmos experience can thus be expanded by using 5.1.4 or 7.1.2 configurations. A 5.1.4 speaker configuration is based upon a traditional 5.1 speaker layout complemented by 4 overhead or Dolby Atmos-enabled speakers. A 7.1.2 configuration is based on a 7.1 speaker layout with 2 overhead, or Dolby Atmos-enabled speakers.

The new X series AVRs have built-in Wi-Fi to easily connect to a home network, and Bluetooth to connect mobile devices with the touch of a button.  Users can stream their own music most conveniently from Apple iDevices via AirPlay, or access their music library on DLNA compatible devices like a network attached storage device (NAS). Moreover, users can choose from thousands of Internet Radio stations and enjoy music from Spotify via the latest Spotify Connect scheme (where available; subscriptions required) as well as Pandora and SiriusXM.

A front USB port is provided to connect either USB storage devices, or an iDevice to playback music.  As well, a Denon Remote App is available for iOS and Android devices, and the further improved Setup Assistant and Advanced Graphical User Interface make it easy to set everything up.  

With in total 8 HDMI inputs and 3 HDMI outputs, the AVR-X4100W is ready to take over full control of literally all digital devices such as Blu-ray players, media players, video cameras and more at the same time. The AVR-X4100W’s advanced video processor is equipped to handle future 4K Ultra HD 50/60 Hz full rate content as well as featuring 4:4:4 Pure Color 4K sub-sampling pass-through, both features of the latest HDMI specification. It even has the ability to upconvert and transcode standard definition and high definition video sources up to 4k Ultra HD 50/60 Hz resolution for the ultimate viewing experience.

To sum it up, the AVR-X4100W owns advanced multi-zone, pre-out and custom installation options to become a true entertainer for the whole home. At the same time, Denon developed a new Eco mode featuring a unique power consumption management that adds to the company’s green environment policy without compromising on performance and sound quality.

The top model in the X-Series is the new AVR-X5200W comes with the same feature set as the AVR-X4100W, but further adds unique technologies. It has a powerful nine channel amplifier with 205 watts per channel packed in a discrete monolithic amplifier design with custom made DHCT (Denon High Current Transistors) and supports speaker setups beyond its nine power amplifiers stages, thanks to its ability to process even 11.2 channels. The AVR-X5200W supports a 5.1.2, 5.1.4, 7.1.2, and even a full 11 channel Dolby Atmos setup; taking advantage of 7.1.4 or 9.1.2 Dolby Atmos configurations. A 7.1.4 speaker configuration is based upon a traditional 7.1 speaker layout complemented by four overhead, or Dolby Atmos-enabled speakers. A 9.1.2 configuration is based on a 9.1 speaker layout with two overhead speakers. This is connectivity, versatility and power to the extreme.

AVR-X4100W 7.2ch Network AV Receiver – Key Features

  • 200W x 7ch high quality discrete power amplifier for powerful and detailed sound
  • D.D.S.C.-HD with AL24 Processing, Denon Link HD
  • Built-in Wi-Fi with dual antenna, built in Bluetooth
  • Latest HDMI standard with 4K Ultra HD 50/60 Hz Pass-through and 4:4:4 color resolution
  • Advanced Video Processing with upscaling up to 1080p and 4k Ultra HD 50/60Hz
  • 8 HDMI inputs (incl. 1 front), 3 HDMI outputs (2 main + zone)
  • Dolby Atmos (5.1.2, 5.1.4*, 7.1.2* configuration)
  • Audyssey DSX and DTS Neo:X 9.1ch processing
  • Wide support for streaming formats including DSD and AIFF streaming
  • AirPlay and DLNA music streaming; Spotify Connect, Pandora and SiriusXM (subscription required)
  • Advanced ECO mode with off/on/auto setting
  • Audyssey MultEQ XT32 / Sub EQ HT / LFC (Pro ready)
  • Audyssey Dynamic Volume and Dynamic EQ
  • RS232 control
  • Phono input
  • 125 watts per channel (8ohm, 20-20kHz, THD 0.05%)
  • 3 source, 3 zones; 9.2ch processing and 13.2ch pre-out
  • Improved Setup Assistant and Graphical User Interface (Hybrid GUI, 9-languages)
  • Available in black

AVR-X5200W 9.2ch Network AV Receiver – Additional Features

  • 205W x 9ch high quality discrete power amplifier for powerful and detailed sound
  • Monolithic amplifier design with Denon custom made transistors
  • Dolby Atmos (5.1.2, 5.1.4, 7.1.2, 7.1.4*, 9.1.2* configuration)
  • Audyssey DSX and DTS Neo:X 11.1ch processing
  • 11.2ch processing and 13.2ch pre-out; gold-plated terminals
  • 140 watts per channel (8ohm, 20-20kHz, THD 0.05%)

The AVR-X4100W ($1,399 U.S.) and AVR-X5200W ($1,999 U.S.) are expected to be available in October 2014.  Look for more information at: www.denon.com

Legacy Audio

Legacy Audio has just introduced a new on-wall/in-wall loudspeaker – the Silhouette.  Though on-wall speakers are often dynamically constrained in the lower octaves due to their size and design, Legacy Audio’s new Sihouette has been designed specifically to overcome these challenges and deliver a sound with top-to-bottom slam. The three-way design uses a new 10” low-profile long-excursion woofer and pneumatically coupled radiator.  A 7” silver/graphite midrange and 4” Legacy AMT ribbo mate to ensure a quick, clear and clean midrange and treble.  

Measuring just 4.5” deep, it is sure to be a non-intrusive addition to any audio setup.  Legacy has further subdued this speakers profile by using a anti-diffractive contoured edges.  French cleat-mounting brackets make for quick installation on the wall surface.

Specifications:
Application: On-Wall Full Range for Mains or Side Channels
System Type: Three-way, passive radiator
Mounting: Wall mount with bracket
System Directivity: 60 degrees horizontally, 45 degrees vertically
Tweeter: 4” AMT
Midwoofer: 7” Silver/Graphite
Bass: 10” long throw low profile motor – 10” passive radiator
Frequency Response: 48-28k
Sensitivity: 92 dB (Room, @ 2.83V)
Crossover Frequency: 250 Hz, 2.5kHz
Inputs: 1 pair binding post, recessed cup
Dimensions: 36.6” H x 15.5” W x 4.5” D
Weight: 49 lbs each

The new Legacy Audio Silhouette On-Wall/In-Wall speaker will begin shipping September 2014 in a variety of wood veneers and can be ordered with either natural brushed or black anodized brushed side trim.  Introductory MSRP is: $3,960/pair.  Look for more details at: http://www.legacyaudio.com.

Primare

Primare, a Sweedish audio product manufaturer, is now shipping their new luxury 60 series pre/power amplification system.  The 60 series is entirely designed and built in Sweden.  The new PRE60 preamplifier and A60 power amplifier are Primare’s return to the high-end music system market, incorporating state-of-the-art audio streaming performance and striking aethetics. 

Taking their traditional build quality and analogue circuit design with the finest digital processing, the first 60 series music system is a significant step-up from the Primare’s 30 series brings a new supremely audiophile level of performance to Primare product line-up.

The PRE60 is a reference audiophile pre-amplifier.  The chassis is heavy gauge alloy steel with a comprehensive OLED display.  the PRE60 provides two pairs (L/R) of low-noise balanced XLR inputs, 4 pairs of RCA inputs, RS232, trigger, and IR inputs.  There are two pairs of RCA outputs and 2 pairs balanced XLR outputs, as well as a record output.

The PRE60’s integrated DAC/media board offers MEDIA/streaming connections such as USB, iPad, LAN etc. It provides up to 24 bit/192 kHz streaming of files from Internet, NAS or PCs, as well as Internet radio content and also a digital audio input from a range of devices including CD players, smart phones, personal players, sat boxes etc.

Precise input calibration and system set-up is easy to achieve via the PRE60’s simple but responsive remote and clear OLED display, which is dimmable in four steps. The Primare App for iOS or Android is available to control PRE60 functionality including input selection, volume and the browsing and selection of online and stored media.

The matching A60 is a reference audiophile, fully balanced 2 x 250Watts-per-channel low-distortion stereo power amplifier that utilizes four discrete amplifiers (two per channel) in a fully balanced configuration. Each channel incorporates unbalanced RCA and balanced Neutrik XLR inputs, as well as high quality WBT Nextgen speaker terminals, trigger and RS232 control inputs. Unbalanced input signals are converted to balanced signals by an integral high quality conversion stage.

Both the PRE60 and A60 components are now available for purchase, with European pricing inclusive of VAT, as follows: PRE60 preamplifier £6500 and; A60 power amplifier £6500.  Look for more details on these products at: http://www.primare.net/.

 

WireWorld Platinum Series 7 USB

Wireworld Cable Technology, has announced the release of their Series 7 reference USB Audio cables - namely the Platinum Starlight 7 USB and Silver Starlight 7 USB (left two pictured above), which joins their existing Series 7 models, including their Starlight 7 (pictured on the right-end above) .  The new Series 7 cables are purported to be dramatically quieter, due to the use of Composilex 2 insulation, while their transmission speed has been increase to > 10.2Gbps by incorporating an upgraded DNA Helix design.  These two upgrades are claimed to minimize jitter and thus provide a higher level of musical realism.

The cables employ Wireworld’s patented DNA Helix design with six signal conductors that are arranged in a newly expanded symmetrical geometry.  This serves to direct more electromagnetic energy and exceed a 10.2Gbps transmission speed, which is higher than the official USB high speed specification. The Composilex 2 insulation reduces triboelectric noise and triples the noise-absorption to produce lifelike tone color and imaging.

The Platinum Starlight 7 USB features molded carbon fiber connectors and six solid silver conductors (3 x 23AWG) for uncompromised performance, while the Silver Starlight 7 USB features the same DNA Helix design with six silver-clad OFC conductors and aluminum connectors at $300 for a one meter cable.  Both cables are available in lengths from .3 to 5 meters in A to B and A to mini B configurations.  The Platinum Starlight 7 USB has a MSRP of $700 U.S. / 1-metre and the Silver Starlight 7 USB has a MSRP of: $300 U.S./1-metre.  For more information, visit: http://www.wireworldcable.com

Marantz PM7005

Marantz has just announced the releasse of a new integrated amplifier – the PM7005.  The PM7005 is both an integrated stereo amplifier and USB digital-to-analog converter (DAC)Within the PM7005 are premium components including Marantz’s proprietary HDAM SA3 circuitry, Cirrus Logic CS4398 DAC and a high-speed “instantaneous current” power supply that works to ensure the PM7005 can fully deliver the 80 watts-per-channel into 4 ohms that its rated for.  On the back are gold-plated solid brass terminals for secure connections.  

The PM7005 brings in the new with the old by providing a USB-B connection capable of hi-res 192kHz/24 bit audio files, as well as DSD files in both 2.8MHz and 5.6MHz but also providing an integrated phono stage input with Marantz’s Analog Mode that shuts of digital circuitry to maximize the analog goodness.  

Additional features for the PM7005 include digital optical and coaxial inputs, a remote control,  a signal isolator for DAC Mode, and a current feedback phono equalizer to help insure the purest listening, from 1s and 0s to analog grooves.

Marantz’s new PM7005 Integrated Amplifier with USB-DAC will have a MSRP of $1,000 U.S. with expected availability in August, 2014.  Look for more details at: http://www.marantz.com/.

Martin Logan XT

MartinLogan has just announced the addition of three new speaker models within their Motion Series: Motion 60XT floorstanding, Motion 50XT center channel, and Motion 35XT bookshelf speaker.

XT stands for extreme, which is appropriate, given that the new Motion XT speakers play louder, lower, and more accurately then even.  The Motion XT models incorporate: high-excursion, black aluminum cone woofers with low-turbulence, rear-firing, bass ports; larger more accurate Folded Motion XT tweeters with 40% larger radiating surface; and a dedicated mid-woofer on the Motion 60XT for a more open, revealing and authentic sound in the critical midrange. 

High-gloss finishes, subtle angled-top cabinets with soft radius corners and signature MartinLogan perforated grilles provide a high-style flavour to the solid performance of the new Motion XT models.  

Additional refinements include custom 5-way bi-wire tool-less binding posts that allow ultimate connection flexibility, and reinforced solid internal bracing that eliminates internal resonances and standing waves.

The complete Motion Series comprises of four floorstanding speakers (Motion 20, 40 & 60XT), two bookshelf speakers (Motion 15 & 35XT) and two center channels (Motion 30 and 50XT). Each speaker is voice-matched, ensuring mix-and-match versatility to create the ideal system for any size room.

Motion 60XT, 50XT & 35XT pricing starts at $2,999.95 U.S. /pair, $899.95 U.S. each, and $1,199.95 U.S. / pair, respectively, in High-Gloss Piano Black finish.  High-Gloss Black Cherrywood finish is also available, and all models will ship at the end of July 2014.  For more information, go to: http://www.martinlogan.com/motionSeries

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