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3 Must-See Technologies at CEDIA Expo 2008

HDMI expansion, acoustical treatments, and anything and everything Apple will take center-stage.

Robert Archer · August 26, 2008

CEDIA Expo (Sept. 4-7, Denver, Colo.) will feature literally thousands of products.

That’s not exactly a news flash, but what is interesting is that there will be a lot of new products introduced that address specific-market segments.

Here are three must-see technologies at CEDIA Expo 2008: HDMI expansion, acoustical treatments, and anything and everything Apple.

HDMI Expands Beyond TV, DVD

Today, HDMI is included in everything from cheap upconverting DVD players to statement pieces of electronics from companies like Meridian and Krell.

But unlike previous shows, HDMI won’t be limited to televisions and DVD players. After years of caution, the performance audio community is embracing the format.

Bryston, for example, will be showing a prototype of its forthcoming SP3 preamp/processor. Tentatively, the company says it will offer the SP3 in a choice of configurations that range from basic connectivity to full switching and processing features.

Krell recently announced its Evolution 707 preamp/processor with HDMI 1.3, and was joined by Mark Levinson with its No502 A/V controller.

HDMI transmission devices will be on display, as well, with many using Cat 5 to bridge long distances.

Key Digital, which recently unveiled new smart baluns designed for long, high-quality video runs, will have HDMI products on display. Tributaries’ HDA140 HDMI splitter, another new HDMI 1.3 distribution product, can send 1440p content to four zones simultaneously.

Acoustical Treatments Go Green

Thanks to the educational efforts of the Home Acoustics Alliance, THX, and many manufacturers, acoustics are now included in many installation packages.

At CEDIA, acoustical treatment trends will be going green, with a new commitment to green-friendly materials and cost-friendly solutions that can be used in new homes and retrofits.

Installers interested in this category should visit the Auralex and Real Traps booths.

Apple Expands Presence in Custom Market

Now that Steve Jobs has established domination of music sales through iTunes, the company’s next hurdle could be home control.

Savant Systems, which develops home automation and control products, is leading the way for Apple in the custom market.

At CEDIA, Savant will host RacePoint programming training to facilitate a new generation of Mac-based control system installations.

Savant isn’t alone in its admiration of Apple. SpeakerCraft, one of the custom industry’s early Apple-friendly manufacturers, is among the companies that will be showing control and automation interfaces and applications for the iPhone.

HAI, Convergent Living, AirRemote and Insteon powerline devices are all on the iPhone bandwagon, with applications and interfaces.

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  About the Author

Bob is an audio enthusiast who has written about consumer electronics for various publications within Massachusetts before joining the staff of CE Pro in 2000. Bob is THX Level I certified, and he's also taken classes from the Imaging Science Foundation (ISF) and Home Acoustics Alliance (HAA). Bob also serves as the technology editor for CE Pro's sister publication Commercial Integrator. In addition, he's studied guitar and music theory at Sarrin Music Studios in Wakefield, Mass., and he also studies Kyokushin karate at 5 Dragons in Haverhill, Mass. Have a suggestion or a topic you want to read more about? Email Robert at

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