5 luxury gadgets and gear to lust over

Yesterday was the Luxury Technology Show in New York, and there were a lot of high-end, not to mention high-ticket, items on display. Here are some of the coolest products from a few of the manufacturers on display for you to buy or covet, depending on your budget.

Meridian Introduces G65 Surround Controller

If Meridian’s new G65 Surround Controller looks (and sounds) familiar, there’s good reason for that. It may be an all-new design, but the G65 hearkens back in many ways to the Meridian 565 — the legendary digital sound controller than put Meridian on the high-end surround sound map back in 1994. It also borrows technology more »


Is Home Stereo Dead? CNN Thinks So

Stereo systems. Like cable TV and camera film, younger people largely couldn’t care less about them. So says CNN in an article called “The Death of the Home Stereo System.” It may be painful for some longtime home entertainment enthusiasts to accept, but kids and many older people don’t want traditional AV components because, frankly, more »

McIntosh Introduces New MCD550 SACD/CD Player and MA8000 Integrated Amplifier

McIntosh has announced two new products that I didn’t have time to see in person at this year’s CEDIA EXPO, unfortunately. The company’s new MCD550 SACD/CD Player and the MA8000 Integrated Amplifier deliver new features and functionality, while maintaining that inimitable McIntosh style. The tenth-generation MCD550 borrows a couple of technologies from its bigger brother, the MCD1100, including a more »

Parasound Introduces the Halo P 5 Stereo Preamplifier

Parasound’s Halo P 3 stereo preamplifier has been lauded by reviewers over the years for its beautiful build quality and impressive feature set, not to mention its sound quality. With a reputation like that, Parasound probably could have tweaked its chassis, maybe added a USB input, and had a very successful modern stereo preamp on more »

Sherbourn Merges with Emotiva

Longtime Sherbourn dealers didn’t take it so well when re-jiggered its distribution model earlier this year to bypass the traditional distributor/rep model and move to direct sales for both consumers and systems integrators. So it’s safe to say that today’s announcement won’t be met with too much rejoicing from the custom installation market — at least more »

NuForce Icon DAC Goes Straight to the (Android) Source

NuForce has released a new addition to its line of DACs and headphone amps that should be of particular interest to you Android fans in the audience. The new Icon DAC not only features 32-bit digital-to-analog conversion for Macs and PCs, but also serves as an audiophile caliber DAC and headphone amp for phones and more »

Integra Introduces New HDBaseT-Equipped Receiver and AV Processor

Integra has long been a leader in the AV receiver market for custom installation applications, but one thing that even Integra hasn’t been able to get past is the fact that HDMI cables are a pain in the butt to run. They’re fragile, they’re finicky, and if your source device is more than a few more »

Yamaha Intros AVENTAGE Surround Preamp and 11 (ELEVEN!)-Channel Amp

File this one under the heading of Pleasant Surprises. Yamaha has been doing some great stuff in the receiver market for the past couple of years with its AVENTAGE lineup. But let’s face it: for serious home theater systems, you need separates. Not that there’s anything wrong with receivers, mind you. I always run receivers more »

Jade Design Completes Acquisition of Bob Carver, LLC

When you get invited to spend an hour or so on the phone with Dan Laufman, CEO of Jade Design — or the Man from Emotiva, as I like to call him — you don’t turn that opportunity down. Yesterday, Dan held a conference call with me and a handful of other journalists to discuss more »

Mark Levinson Ships 40th Anniversary № 52 Reference Dual-Mono Preamp

NAD isn’t the only hi-fi company celebrating forty years with new audiophile goodies. Harman‘s Luxury Audio Group has announced that the Mark Levinson 40th Anniversary № 52 Reference Dual-Monaural Preamplifier is now shipping. Touted as “the finest preamplifier ever created by Mark Levinson,” the № 52 boasts an “all-analog, true dual-monaural design with a two-chassis configuration that more »

Theta Digital Adds 12-Channel AES/EBU Output Card Option to Casablanca III HD

Theta Digital is not known for going halfway, and taking a look at any of the company’s products will tell you that.  In a step to make their products even better, Theta Digital has announced a new digital output card for their Casablanca III HD Music & Cinema Controller. The Casablanca is built around a modular more »