Sony’s HomeShare HD Merges Home Theater with Multiroom Video
New GUI on keypads mimics PS3 and Blu-ray XrossMediaBar on-screen displays. The expandable system uses Cat 5 distribution and is designed to be sold for $1,000 to $2,000 per room.
Sony’s new HomeShare HD system is designed to merge home theater and multiroom audio in a single “plug-and-play” affordable system.
While many integrators have honed their businesses to be specialists in home theater and others have taken advantage of multiroom audio/video, Sony is hoping to end that gap.
Features of the HomeShare HD system include:
- iPod connectivity
- satellite radio control
- HD video distribution
- intercom and CCTV connectivity
- a new graphical user interface touchpanel that mimics the PS3 and Blu-ray on-screen display
The system was unveiled during a press conference at the CEDIA Expo in Denver, but Neal Manowitz, director of marketing for Sony’s consumer systems and applications division, gave CE Pro a sneak peek at the system.
Manowitz says the product addresses the two hottest areas for integrators all in one system by offering complete home theater integration with whole-house video distribution.
“Sony is one of the few companies capable of doing this,” he adds. “The home theater gear doesn’t need to be separate from the multiroom system anymore.”
The system components include:
- the amplified keypad (HS-KP1)
- a series of wallports (HS-WV1, HS-WA1 and HS-WD1) connected with Cat 5 wiring
- a distribution panel
- a power supply (HS-AC1)
The HS-MB1 distribution panel is used when the system includes more than two rooms of video distribution. HomeShare HD keypads can also access the Sony ES receiver, using RS-232 and IR control, to reach HD movies, satellite radio and satellite TV.
The expandable nature of the system allows integrators to use HomeShare HD for a single-room home theater solution, then come back later if the homeowner wishes and easily upgrade to two rooms or more.
“The new solution delivers straightforward plug and play. It’s designed to expand the residential installation market by expanding benefits and removing cost barriers,” says Brennan Mullin, vice president, audio.
Via the keypads, the system allows users to navigate their iPod music, view a camera doorbell via the intercom function, and watch HD programming in multiple rooms.
Even more importantly, Sony hopes HomeShare HD will be the impetus to expand its dealer network. The product will be sold direct to dealers, but Manowitz says he hopes to leverage the success of the system to open up the company’s dealer network to even more integrators.
Sony is supporting the product launch with a marketing campaign aimed at dealers. “We still see the dealer as the key to the new-home construction path,” says Manowitz.
Sony also announced the expansion of its NHS pre-configured, pre-racked systems. The NHS-A30C is a new three-zone system, while the NHS-70C is a new seven-zone system.
“The new racks expand up to three and seven zones, making it easier to configure systems for clients homes,” says Brennan Mullin, vice president, audio.
Both products will be available starting in the fourth quarter of 2008.
HomeShare HD: Sony aims for dealers to price between $1,000 and $2,000 per room, including wiring and speakers (but excluding source components).
Shipping in first quarter of 2009.
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Jason Knott is Chief Content Officer for Emerald Expositions Connected Brands. Jason has covered low-voltage electronics as an editor since 1990, serving as editor and publisher of Security Sales & Integration. He joined CE Pro in 2000 and serves as Editor-in-Chief of that brand. He served as chairman of the Security Industry Association’s Education Committee from 2000-2004 and sat on the board of that association from 1998-2002. He is also a former board member of the Alarm Industry Research and Educational Foundation. He has been a member of the CEDIA Business Working Group since 2010. Jason graduated from the University of Southern California. Have a suggestion or a topic you want to read more about? Email Jason at firstname.lastname@example.org
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