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Denon Heos Link

Denon has just announced two new models for their HEOS wireless multi-room sound system line of compenents - the HEOS Link and HEOS Amp, which join the existing HEOS speakers: HEOS 3, HEOS 5 and HEOS 7.

The HEOS Link (MSRP $349 U.S.) allows easy integration of any existing music system into the HEOS by Denon “ecosystem”.  Connection of the Link stereo pre-amplifier via an analog, digital coaxial or fiber-optic cable allows users to turn any existing system into a wireless HEOS audio zone.  In addition, the Link lets users control select Denon receivers, integrated amplifiers or mini-systems via the HEOS App.

The HEOS Amp (MSRP $499 U.S.) is designed to add HEOS multi-room audio functionality to any pair of stereo loudspeakers, featuring the same wireless ease-of-use as Denon’s HEOS speaker models.  With a powerful 100W Class D digital amplifier in a sleek compact chassis, the HEOS Amp delivers low distortion and high current capability.

HEOS range is enhanced by an optional range extender that improves or expands the user’s existing home wireless network (optional and sold separately).  The whole HEOS system can simply be controlled by a single, slick state-of-the-art HEOS App, available for Apple and Android devices.

The App provides comprehensive control via a simple interface.  It lets users group speakers together or separate rooms. It gives instant command of the music in every room, letting users create and save playlists as well as check what songs are next in the lineup. 

HEOS Link: Key Features

·       Turns any receiver, amplifier or home stereo system with an input jack into a HEOS zone
·       Plays any song in any room on demand from streaming services
·       Play from smart devices: streaming, directly from phone/tablet, USB, network storage, aux. input
·       Users can control Denon AVRs, integrated amplifiers and mini-systems from the HEOS app
·       12V trigger output for external device turn-on
·       Subwoofer pre-out
·       Does not need bridge- easy set-up
·       Dual-band Wi-Fi
·       Optical digital and analog inputs
·       Coaxial and optical digital outputs
·       Variable analog output
·       Superior sound
·       Easy setup
·       State-of-the-art industrial design
·       USB input directly to speaker
·       Tight synchronization
·       Easy-to-use App with three tabs- one-touch access to most-used features
·       Users can control HEOS Link from control devices like phones and tablets
·       Connect HEOS Link to the network using the App without need for router or network cables
·       Access to streaming services, Internet radio and music on a smartphone all from one App

HEOS Amp: Key Features

·       Turns any existing pair of speakers into a HEOS zone
·       Plays any song in any room on demand from streaming services
·       Play from smart devices: streaming, directly from phone/tablet, USB, network storage, aux. input
·       100W x 2 Class D Amplification
·       4-16 ohms
·       Analog and optical digital inputs
·       Subwoofer preout
·       Does not need bridge—easy set-up
·       Dual-band Wi-Fi
·       State-of-the-art industrial design
·       USB input directly to speaker
·       Tight synchronization
·       Superior sound
·       Easy-to-use App with three tabs-one-touch access to most-used features
·       Users can control HEOS Amp from control devices like phones and tablets
·       Connect HEOS Link to the network using the App without need for router or network cables
·       Access to streaming services, Internet radio, and music on a smartphone all from one App
·       Users can control any pair of speakers from the HEOS App

The new HEOS Link and Amp are expected to be available by mid-August 2014.  The HEOS microsite is now live at: www.heosbydenon.com.  The youtube video is available at: www.youtube.com/watch?v=sWrisxa3YAw.

 

 

MartinLogan

MartinLogan has announced that they will be bringing factory direct reinforcement to their Canadian dealers effective September 1st, 2014.  MartinLogan has, up to now, partnered with Plurison, a Canadian distributor of high-end A/V products fir distribution of its products across Canada; however, MartinLogan would like to implement a distirubtion arrangement that mimics their dealer direct business model, used in the United States.

“Plurison has been a highly respected and strong partner with MartinLogan for well over 20 years. Their dedication has been greatly appreciated over the years and we continue to wish them the very best in the future,” said Allan Tarrant, North American Sales Director for MartinLogan. “It is our goal to proceed with this process as quickly as possible, to ensure both our dealers and their customers experience little to no interruption in service. It is our intention to bring the same level of customer dedication MartinLogan is known for in the United States, to the Canadian marketplace. Our dealers can expect key rep partnerships, focused support, strengthened dealer programs and faster shipping turnaround with our Mississauga, Ontario based warehouse in the weeks ahead.”

As of September 1st 2014, all sales, training and support will be handled by MartinLogan’s new Canadian Sales Manager, Justin Brown, a team of highly skilled rep firms and MartinLogan’s inside sales team based in Lawrence, Kansas.  All service related scenarios will also be handled by MartinLogan directly from the Lawrence, Kansas facility as well.  All Canadian dealer shipments will be dispatched from the MartinLogan manufacturing and warehouse facility in Mississauga, Ontario.

For more information about MartinLogan, please visit: http://www.martinlogan.com/

Audioengine B1

Audioengine just recently announced the introduction of their new B1 Premium Bluetooth Music Receiver.  The new B1 is a high-fidelity audio component that streams high-quality audio from your Bluetooth-enabled smartphone, computer, or tablet to any music system or powered speakers.

Bluetooth device pairing is easily done with the B1 and requires no special setup or software.  Consumers with Bluetooth on their tablets, computers, or iDevices, can get a fuller experience with the Audioengine B1 Bluetooth Receiver including aptX, 24-bit upsampling DAC, and extended range.

The aluminum case of the B1 reflects traditional Audioengine design and the high-quality components and audio fidelity are typical of Audioengine’s commitment to great sound at affordable prices.  

Key Features:
Easy setup, connects in seconds
Plug-n-play, no software to install
Superior sound and extended range
Streams audio from any media player
Connects to any music system

The Audioengine B1 Premium Bluetooth Music Receiver has MSRP of $189 U.S. and is currently available.  For a complete list of product features and specifications, visit: http://audioengineusa.com/

Jamo Concert Series

Jamo, a Klipsch Group, Inc. brand, just announced their new Jamo Concert Series, which includes ten passive home theater speakers.  The Concert Series is the brand’s flagship series and this is now its second generation.

The Jamo Concert Series includes the high-end, premium C 10 line and the high performance C 9 line, with three floorstanding towers (C 109, C 97 and C 95), three bookshelf models (C 103, C 93 and C 91), two center channels (C 10 CEN and C 9 CEN), and two surrounds (C 10 SUR and C 9 SUR).Designed by famed loudspeaker designer Kieron Dunk, the new Concert Series incorporates beautiful exteriors with simple lines and natural textures that allow each speaker to blend seamlessly within living spaces.  Hand-polished high-gloss finishes, satin painted MDF baffles, polished chrome logos, satin aluminum center plugs and stabilizer feet make this series aesthetically elegant while providing exceptional acoustics. The C 10 line features a meticulous, 12 step application process for its premium hand-polished high gloss finishes.

Key features:
• Evolved Hybrid Composition Conical Cones (HCCC) that provide the stiffness and strength of aluminum or titanium with the transient response and smoothness of wood fibre that self-damps resonance at high frequencies for smooth midrange performance.
• All-new Long Displacement Surround (LDS) design for woofers and midrange drivers that deliver improved low-frequency response that leads to a more natural, open sound
• Improved Anti-Diffraction WaveGuide (ADW) technology that produces more immersive and impactful listening outside of the sweet spot
• Redesigned silk dome tweeter diaphragms with extra-large surround that lower distortion and enable greater high-frequency extension

Pricing of the Jamo Concert Series modesl ranges from $1,000 U.S. to $3,500 U.S. for a pair of floorstanding towers, $500 U.S. to $1,500 U.S. for a pair of bookshelf speakers, $700 U.S. to $1,400 U.S. for a pair of surrounds and $400 U.S. to $1,000 U.S. for a center channel.

The Jamo Concert Series are currently available.  Look for more information at: www.Jamo.com.

 

Creative 2.1 Audio System
Creative Technology Ltd has announced the introduction of their new Creative T3250 Wireless 2.1 speaker system.  The Creative T3250 joins Creative Technologies range of wireless speakers with Bluetooth technology. 
The T3250 features a Creative Image Focusing Plate (IFP) that allows the speaker system to achieve a wide acoustic sweet spot with improved sonic directivity and tonal accuracy.  The Creative Dual Slot Enclosure (DSE) is a port tube that ensures robust mid bass.  Paired with the included custom-tuned down-firing subwoofer, the system can deliver a punchy bass.

 
Bluetooth connectionenables wireless music streaming from most stereo Bluetooth devices such as smart phones, tablets and laptops.  In addition, a 3.5mm Line-in jack is provided for those analog audio devices that required a wired connection.  An audio control pod includes Power ON/OFF, Bluetooth and volume control.
Specifications:
  • Product Weight : 2.1 kg / 4.6 lbs
  • Satellites Dimension (HxWxD) : 147 x 70 x 75 mm / 5.8 x 2.8 x 3.0 inches
  • Subwoofer Dimension (HxWxD) : 222 x 183 x 183 mm / 8.7 x 7.2 x 7.2 inches
  • Bluetooth operating frequency : 2402 – 2480MHz
  • Bluetooth Version : 3.0
  • Supported Bluetooth profile : A2DP (Wireless Stereo Bluetooth)1
  • Supported Codec : SBC
  • Operating Range for Bluetooth devices : Up to 10 meters
  • (Measured in open space. Walls and structures may affect range of device.)
  • 3.5mm Integrated Line-In jack for other audio devices

The Creative T3250 Wireless 2.1 speaker system has a MSRP of $69.99 U.S. and is available begining in August 2014.  Look for more details at: http://sg.creative.com/.

Steel Series Headphones
SteelSeries, in collaboration with Blizzard Entertainment, has just announced their new Siberia Elite World of Warcraft Edition Headset.  The new gaming headset is a unique preipheral to the World of Warcraft gaming experience.  The Siberia Elite World of Warcarft Edition Headset invites users to the upcoming Warlords of Draenor expansion with high quality audio and a World of Warcraft-themed design.
The headset is equipped with multiple Dolby technologies and a closed-type earcup design that provides listeners with a virtual 7.1-channel surround sound experience. Players are able to create and save their own unique audio profiles through the SteelSeries Engine 3 software by tuning their own equalizer settings, microphone functionality and much more.  Gamers can control their microphone mute as well as speaker volume from directly on the headset by turning the easy-to-find dials on each earcup, making quick adjustments simple and convenient.

The SteelSeries Siberia Elite World of Warcraft Edition headset is available for pre-order now on the SteelSeries Web Shop at a MSRP of: $219.99 U.S. /€219,99.  For more information, please visit http://steelseries.com/g/world-of-warcraft.

Essence and SVS

SVS has selected as the exclusive subwoofer brand recommended and sold by Essence Electrostatic Speaker Systems.  The SVS SB-1000 in Gloss White and Black Ash, as well as the SB13-Ultra Gloss Black sealed subwoofers were chosen, given their complementary performance characteristics with the Essence 1200 and 1600 electrostatic speakers.  These SVS subwoofers will be available from the Essence website and its audio/video dealers worldwide.

Bob Rapoport, VP Sales & Marketing, Essence Elctrostatic Speaker Systems has been quoted as stating the following: “After conducting exhaustive research on every subwoofer brand we could think of, it became clear that SVS sealed subs were more articulate, musical and transparent than any others we tested…We call the Essence Electrostatic speakers the ‘ultimate listening experience’ because they are capable of producing a palpably realistic stereo image, something that’s easy to hear and gives you the goosies.  SVS sealed subwoofers will only enhance this experience.”  

Electrostatic speakers use an ultra low-mass thin-film Mylar diaphragm suspended in an electrostatic field between two perforated acrylic panels called “stators” to propagate sound out the front and back of the panel.  In general, electrostats most known for their clarity, resolution, transient response, and image specificity in the mid to high frequency ranges.  However, their design presents inherent challenges for bass perofrmance and limitations on the amount of air they can move to fill larger rooms.  The SVS subwoofer pairing will serve to support Essence electrostatic speakers in this critical range, filling in the low frequencies across the bottom 2 bass octaves.

SVS sealed subwoofers feature sophisticated Class D amplifiers with custom DSP (digital signal processing) for effortless performance and refinement at all volume levels. Sealed subwoofers are known for providing cleaner, tighter bass than ported models with heightened musicality, articulation and transient response. SVS sealed subwoofers integrate with both electrostatic and traditional speakers.

Essence loudspeakers and SVS sealed subwoofers are available now from http://www.essenceelectrostatic.com/ and from select specialty AV retailers.  For more information about SVS, please visit http://www.svsound.com/.

HiFiMan HE-400

HiFiMAN has announced their newest full-size planar magnetic headphone, the HE-400i.  The new HE-400i replaces the company’s HE-400.  The new HE-400i is lighter, more comfortable and has a higher efficiency that makes it easier to drive with mobile devices.

The new HiFiMAN HE-400i is now lighter than every and incorporates a newly-designed headband that along with being lighter has an improved pressure pattern that substantially increases comfort.  The FocusPad, which is a new beveled hybrid ear pad made of pleather and velour, provides increased comfort and improved sound quality.  Gloss ear cups are finished in a smoky gray Mylar finish, providing a stylish and contemporary look.

The HE-400i has newly-designed single-ended drivers in open-back design for a lifelike soundstage and spatial imaging.  Efficiency has been increased to 93dB, allowing the new HE-400i to be driven with a portable audio devices at a high performance level.  A newly-designed premium cable, comprised of Crystalline metal featuring Oxygen-free copper and Oxygen-free silver is included as standard.   

The former HE-400 is reported as beign the company’s best-selling, full-size headphone; however, owners did express a want for a lighter version with the same level of performance.  Leveraging the designe of HiFiMAN’s own HE-560 model, improvements to the HE-400 were developed.  Key to the increased comfort of the new HE-400i is the lighter improved headband combined with the FocusPad beveled ear pad.  Along with the combined performance improvement that have been acheived with a redesigned driver and premium cable – the new HE-400i should only prove to be more succesfull then its predecessor.

Key Features of the HiFiMAN HE-400i:

  • Newly-engineered, single-sided, planar magnetic driver provides tighter bass with superior soundstage and spatial imaging
  • 30% lighter than other full-size planar magnetic designs for increased comfort
  • Increased efficiency so it is even easier to drive. Can be used with portable audio device such as an iPod or smartphone
  • FocusPad Beveled hybrid ear pads with pleather and velour for increased comfort and improved sound
  • Newly-designed cable comprised of crystalline metal and crystalline silver

The new HiFiMAN HE-400i will have a MSRP of $499 U.S. and is available begining in August.  Look for more details at: http://hifiman.com/

 

Linnenberg Maestro

Linnenberg Audio has just recently announced their Maestro.  The Maestro is a headphone amplifier – a direct descendant of Linnenberg’s own former spa1 headphone amplifier.  The Maestro has been created to satisfy the wants and desires of discerning headphone aficionados. 

Linnenberg has designed the new Maestro to work with any type of dynamic or planar-magnetic headphone.  It can produce a significant amount of output power e.g. 5Wrms into 32 ohms.  Beyond straight forward headphone amplification operation, the Maestro also doubles as a state-of-the-art line-level preamplifier.  Allowing owners to combine a headphone listening system with an active loudspeaker setup or even adding in a power amplifier with passive loudspeakers.

The volume control in the Linnenberg Audio Maestro is a 16-bit R2R ladder network with 0.7dB steps over an 80dB range with <0.05dB channel offset, tight-tolerance metal film resistors and 128 fast-switching low on-resistance analog switches.

On the front-panel are XLR/RCA inputs, XLR/RCA main or XLR and TRS head-fi outputs.  All signal path capacitors have been eliminated through the use of a DC-coupled fully balanced wireless circuit.

The Linnenberg Audio Maestro is now available at a price of €1’370 excl. VAT.  Look for more details on the Maestro at: http://www.linnenberg-audio.de/.

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/.

 

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