Music System

ADA Suite 8200 8-zone multi channel distributed amp

Custom distributed audio specialists ADA (Audio Design Associates) are promising marital bliss with their latest multi-room receiver, the Suite 8200. Supporting eight stereo sources and eight separate output zones, it’s a single chassis pre-amp and class-A/B amplifier, all in a 2U rack-mount box.


A.M.P. music-playing gyroscopic-dancing companion robot

Looking, frankly, malevolent at your taste in music, Tiger Electronics’ A.M.P. Automated Music Personality robot is meant to “revolutionize how and where you listen to music.”  Standing 29-inches high, the A.M.P. uses a piezoelectric gyroscope to stay upright on his twin-wheels (with a flip-out kick-stand for stationary use) and lets you plug in any MP3 player, stow it in his back compartment, and then watch in astonished horror as it “dances” to the music’s beat, flashing its 49 LEDs and adding any of more than 62 sound effects.  Playback is via the built-in 12 watt amp, through a 5-inch mid-range speaker and two high output tweeters.  On the A.M.P.’s hands are touch-sensitive mixing pads, the left controlling music effects and the right controlling the audio itself. 


Musical Tesla Coils play classic 70s electro

Did you know that Tesla coils can sing?  ArcAttack, an AV-DJ group, certainly do, and they’re behind the world’s first Singing Tesla Coils High-Voltage DJ system.  Basically, the electrical arcs shot out by the coils actually create audible square waves, similar to original analogue synthesizers. 

Check out the video of the Singing Tesla Coils in action, after the cut!


Sleek Audio developing Kleer audiophile wireless earphones

Sleek Audio, an audio equipment manufacturer who are so convinced by their SA6 in-ear monitor headphones that they don’t actually make anything else, have announced that they will be the next company to use Kleer’s wireless audio technology.  Kleer’s system, ostensibly a rival to Bluetooth A2DP, is special because of its ability to carry CD-quality audio despite ultra low power consumption.  The new Sleek implementation will also support Kleer’s Listen In technology, which allows up to four users to hear the same source from a single transmitter.


Sony Rolly gets slated: is AP ready for a dancing speaker?

Is the tech world set to split into “those who understand the Sony Rolly” and “those that don’t”?  No, probably not, but AP’s Rachel Metz would certainly fall into the latter category.  In her review of the bizarre twitching, wiggling, flashing PMP speaker – which officially went on sale in the US earlier this month – Rachel’s few good experiences with the device are pretty much overwhelmed by Rolly’s inability to fit into a standard music player niche.  Highlights (or should that be lowlights?) include the lack of a headphone socket, the paltry 2GB of storage and the tricky controls.


Onkyo X-NX10A mini-HiFi with 80GB HDD & internet access

Onkyo’s latest mini-HiFi system, the X-NX10A, might look pretty mainstream (although that color LCD is on the large size), but its demure appearance hides a few pleasantly up-to-date features. For a start, there’s an 80GB hard-drive that you can rip CDs to or, via a USB port, copy across your existing digital music files. An ethernet port also allows the HiFi to look up track and artist information online, or download (non-DRM) tracks directly.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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


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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