NuVision is Back with Strange Partner at CES 2013
A gem of the CE industry, Nuvision was liquidated in 2011, but the brand is back, having been acquired by TMAX Digital, marketer of cheap displays under the Apex brand.
Julie Jacobson · January 14, 2013
It was a sad day for custom installers when NuVision, maker of the highly acclaimed Lucidium LCD TVs, was liquidated in 2011. But it may be sadder now that the brand is back. I was surprised to see it at CES 2013, when I stumbled across the logo way back in the LVCC central hall.
I was to learn that the company was acquired last year by TMAX Digital Inc., “a Consumer Electronics company created to provide leading edge entertainment products at value pricing,” according to the company Web site.
Value pricing indeed. TMAX is behind Apex Digital, beloved TV brand of Target, Walmart and other fine A/V retailers.
It wasn’t easy getting information on NuVision or TMAX in general at CES. I stepped inside the booth, where a couple of attendants sat at a table talking to each other and thumbing their mobile devices as I walked around snapping pictures and looking confused. They barely looked up so finally I asked if they could tell me anything about NuVision.
“No, not really,” they replied.
“Well, is there someone who can?
Apex and Nuvision at TMAX booth, CES 2013
Apparently annoyed that I interrupted their texting sessions, they stepped into the back room and dragged out an equally perturbed Eric Fishman, TMAX director of sales and operations, who wasn’t at all pleased to meet the pesky reporter inquiring about NuVision. During our five-minute conversation he never looked up from his phone, although to his credit I think he did apologize once.
He told me that NuVision was acquired last year by TMAX Digital Inc., but a Google search yields no evidence of such an event.
Fishman told me, “It’s hard to make money on TVs,” so they picked up NuVision as a margin booster.
No, they didn’t acquire physical assets or intellectual property, just the brand and Website, he said.
When I asked if he realized that Nuvision is, I mean was, a premium brand with some unique feature sets, he said he did indeed recognize that the former product line was “way in the stratosphere.”
The two TVs shown at CES, shown in 46- and 55-inch models, carried these specs:
- Complete 3D Support
- Super Slim Edge Lit LED
- True 10-Bit/1.07 Billion Color Signal Processing
- Full HD 1080p 1920 x 1080 Resolution
- True 240Hz Processing
Whether TMAX would specify premium features (such as friendly integration) in its own version of NuVision TVs, he wasn’t sure. And through what channels the company would sell the product, he said, was “yet to be determined.”
This might just be me, but I’m thinking TMAX might not have a very good shot at the custom channel.
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Julie Jacobson is founding editor of CE Pro, the leading media brand for the home-technology channel. She has covered the smart-home industry since 1994, long before there was much of an Internet, let alone an Internet of things. Currently she studies, speaks, writes and rabble-rouses in the areas of home automation, security, networked A/V, wellness-related technology, biophilic design, and the business of home technology. Julie majored in Economics at the University of Michigan, spent a year abroad at Cambridge University, and earned an MBA from the University of Texas at Austin. She is a recipient of the annual CTA TechHome Leadership Award, and a CEDIA Fellows honoree. A washed-up Ultimate Frisbee player, Julie currently resides in San Antonio, Texas and sometimes St. Paul, Minn. Follow on Twitter: @juliejacobson Email Julie at firstname.lastname@example.org
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