Music System

Harman Kardon new home theatre & music amps with iPod dock

Harman Kardon new home theatre & music amps with iPod dock

A/V specialists Harman Kardon have announced a bevy of new audio/video receivers in the company's home theatre AVR range as well as its HK music series.  The new models top out at the flagship AVR 354, shown here, with 7.1 channels, as well as the 7.1 channel AVR 254 and 5.1 channel AVR 154; the two new music receivers are the HK 3490 and HK 3390, both stereo.  All three of the multichannel receivers have HDMI 1.3a functionality and pass video signals to 1080p.

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Panasonic Strada F-Class satnav with remote home automation

Panasonic Strada F-Class satnav with remote home automation

Panasonic's latest Strada F-Class car navigation systems are yet another reason to lament not living in Japan.  The CN-HX1000D and CN-HW1000D borrow the VIERA label from the company's premium LCD TVs, though scaled down to just 7-inches, and throw in a DVD player, GPS, hard-drive, iPod link, Bluetooth and a 1-Seg digital TV tuner.  Most impressive, though, is Panasonic's "From Home to Car" system: that uses a Bluetooth cellphone to link up with a networked home.

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Earthquake Supernova MKVI flagship subs

Earthquake Supernova MKVI flagship subs

Audio specialists Earthquake Sound have revealed their latest floor-throbbing subwoofers, the Supernova MKVI series.  Hand-made in the US, the MKVI slots in at the top of Earthquake's subwoofer range and packs a 1200 watt dynamic and 600 watt RMS Class D switching amplifier together with a new room correction system for balancing the sound.  Unlike rivals, which equalize by adjusting the volume, the Earthquake system takes time reflections and refractions into consideration.

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Logitech Pure-Fi Mobile Bluetooth speakers & speakerphone

Logitech Pure-Fi Mobile Bluetooth speakers & speakerphone

If Sony's Rolly portable speaker system is a little too unusual (and rich) for your tastes, then Logitech's far more traditional Pure-Fi Mobile Bluetooth speakers might be a reasonable alternative.  Packing the A2DP Bluetooth profile for stereo audio, as well as a standard 3.5mm input jack, it will happily stream music from PMPs, cellphones or laptops.  Two microphones, however, mean the Pure-Fi Mobile serves double-duty as a portable Bluetooth speakerphone.

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Sony Rolly dancing speaker robot comes to US

Sony Rolly dancing speaker robot comes to US

Sony's Rolly dancing wireless speaker robot might be a relatively pointless frippery, but now it's a pointless frippery you can officially buy in the US. The company has announced that the easter-egg-sized "Sound Entertainment Player" is now available in retail stores across the country, having been available exclusively in Japan for some time now. Not only does Rolly have stereo speakers, it can be programmed with specific dances via the included choreography software.

Check out the video of Rolly in action after the cut

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Chimera BC16 Mini-Synth: bizarre, flexible analog modular synth

Chimera BC16 Mini-Synth: bizarre, flexible analog modular synth

I've a weakness for odd, glitchy music makers, and Chimera's BC16 Mini-Synth looks like a perfect example of the breed.  The size of a CD (only thicker, obviously), the BC16 might look like a bedroom project but it's actually being factory manufactured and finished by hand; the patch cables link up the VCO, LFO, Envelope, 24db filter, noise and ring modulator in any order you see fit, and then you can twiddle the knobs to your heart's content.  First announced at the end of last year, it's taken Chimera a little longer than expected to get them ready for shipping, but word on the street is that production has caught up with preorders.

Check out the video of the BC16 in action after the cut

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Vita Audio R4 luxury iPod-ready CD & DAB radio

Vita Audio R4 luxury iPod-ready CD & DAB radio

There must be something in the air; mere days after Sonoro's luxury CD clock-radio went on sale in the US, Vita Audio have announced their own hand-crafted all-in-one audiophile music system.  The R4 is being described as "a traditional music player for the 21st century", complete with walnut veneer or white piano lacquer finish, and comprises a CD player, DAB radio, iPod dock and USB port.  It also has Vita's unusual remote control "rotodial".

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Gear4 DUO iPod speaker-dock with removable speaker section

Gear4 DUO iPod speaker-dock with removable speaker section

It's tough to think of a new concept in iPod speaker-docks; most of the more reasonable (and some of the ridiculous) shapes have been done, and you can opt for a tiny speaker that clips like a barnacle to the bottom of the PMP or a towering plinth of musical splendour.  However UK firm Gear4 have gone for flexibility with their latest DUO system.  While it may look straightforward, the front speaker section actually unclips from the main body of the DUO and, courtesy of a rechargeable battery, can be used as a portable speaker setup in the garden or anywhere away from the mains.

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