Kayye’s Krystal Ball: 2021 Edition

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Welcome to my 21st annual Kayye’s Krystal Ball! I love writing this annual predictions article — it’s both humbling and rewarding. It requires me to stop and research anything new, evaluate the potential impact it will have and then articulate it in a way that matters to readers. If you’re a regular reader of my […]

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NKBA Releases 2021 Market Outlook Report

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The National Kitchen & Bath Association released its 2021 Market Outlook report, revealing the industry is poised for continued growth with overall spending for both kitchen and bath projects to increase in the coming year. The industry anticipates a pronounced rebound in overall industry growth from -5.9% in 2020 to 16.6% in 2021, compared to 9% […]

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How the Pandemic Has Accelerated Demand for Premium Audio Products

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By Alexandre Jornod Futuresource Consulting Over recent years, the audio market has witnessed a progressive shift to more premium products. Case in point with headphones and models such as the Apple AirPods Pro, along with the Sony WH-1000XM series, which have helped democratizing higher audio quality to the mass-market. This trend, which can be seen […]

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I Got the Pfizer Vaccine in September; Here’s What You Should Know

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Some of my closest #AVtweeps know that back last summer, I volunteered to be one of the 43,448 people within the global trial to get injected with the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine (aka: BNT162b2 0.3 ml). Yes, I received the actual vaccine rather than the placebo (21,720 people in the study received BNT162b2 and 21,728 received […]

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Visionary Announces Two New PacketAV DUET Wallplate Encoders

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Visionary announced two new PacketAV DUET Wallplate Encoders, one featuring Bluetooth (DuetE-WP-BT) and the other featuring simplified HDMI only connectivity (DuetE-WP-H). The DuetE-WP-BT, the first of its kind, combines powerful 4K UHD video and Dante/AES67 audio embedding and de-embedding over a single gigabit ethernet (PoE) port, with built-in Bluetooth wireless audio connectivity. With Bluetooth 5.0 […]

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Barix Adds Remote Configuration Tool Set to IP Former

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Barix has added a new remote configuration tool set in its IP Former analog-to-IP speaker upgrade solution that makes multi-unit installation faster. Built into each IP Former device and accessible through a web browser, the new tool set enables efficient, centralized configuration of all IP Former units on the same network. The IP Former hardware […]

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Meyer Takes Steps to Patent Audio Solution for Using LEDs in Movie Theaters; It’s Called Ultra Reflex

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Meyer Sound has introduced Ultra Reflex, a patent-pending solution for optimum reproduction of discrete screen channel audio on large-scale direct view (“emissive”) video displays. The complete system for each screen channel comprises a high frequency component reflecting off the screen that is coupled with a direct radiating low frequency component. The result is full bandwidth […]

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New G100 Series From Barco Debuts as Entry-Level Projector Lineup

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Barco has announced the launch of its new budget-friendly G100 series of three laser projectors aimed at media-based attractions, like planetariums, theme parks and smaller events. The G100 is a single-chip projector with native WUXGA (1920×1200) resolution and includes three brightness variants: 16,000, 19,000 and 22,000 lumens. This high-brightness power enables advanced image quality to […]

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D-Tools Releases New Updates for System Integrator Software Solution

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D-Tools announced the availability of System Integrator version 15, which includes new capabilities for its end-to-end, estimation, design, installation and service management software solution. The latest release, SI version 15, provides new performance-enhancing capabilities that include: Solutions — A combination of products and multiple packages can now be created to present in a solutions-based sales […]

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MSE Audio Wins Prize for Shortest News Story of 2021, So Far

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MSE Audio announced cosmetic upgrades to its SoundTube BGM (background music) in-ceiling loudspeakers with upgraded flangeless magnetic grilles. SoundTube’s CM-BGM background music in-ceiling loudspeakers are designed specifically for low and suspended ceilings. The CM-BGM speakers dramatically reduce installation time with SpeedWing constant-tension mounting systems. The CM series incorporates low profile styling and seamless coverage in […]

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LG’s New Transparent Color LED Film Now Comes in 14-Millimeter Pixel Pitch

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LG Business Solutions USA has introduced the LAT140 Transparent Color LED Film digital signage display. First introduced as a 24-millimeter pixel pitch model, the new 14-millimeter version nearly quadruples the number of pixels in the same space and doubles the brightness generating a viewing experience that attracts the attention of passersby, while also displaying a […]

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RTI Debuts AV-over-IP System Aimed at the HomeAV Market

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RTI announced an AV-over-IP system to distribute 4K UHD video over a 1-gigabit network switch. Dubbed VIP, the key is the VIP-UHD-CTRL Control Module, which combines APEX integration with IR, RS-232, or TCP/IP control and a wizard-based interface for system configuration. Signal management provides independent routing of IR, RS-232, USB/KVM, audio, and video signals, while […]

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Neptune’s Restaurant in Hong Kong Utilizes Extron for Multimedia Dining Experience

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When it comes to attracting attention, it’s hard to compete with a 43-foot-wide floor-to-ceiling aquarium teeming with 5,000 colorful sea creatures an arm’s length away from diners indulging in gourmet dishes prepared by a Michelin-starred chef. But Neptune’s Restaurant at the Ocean Park oceanarium and amusement park complex in Hong Kong’s Southern district pulled it […]

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HDMI Forum Announces HDMI 2.1 Is Catching On Quick

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Over three years after the launch of the HDMI Specification Version 2.1, major products are now widely available that support HDMI 2.1 features including 4K@120Hz, 8K@60Hz, Dynamic HDR and eARC. “It’s exciting to see so many new products available with these new features,” said Rob Tobias, CEO and president of HDMI Licensing Administrator, Inc. (HDMI […]

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Luxul Intros 5-Port PoE Switch

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Luxul introduced a new five-port PoE+ powered Gigabit switch with PoE pass-through. For installation flexibility, the SW-100-05PD is powered by a PoE+ switch or injector — eliminating the need for a power supply — and offers multiple mounting options. The SW-100-05PD features a dedicated PoE+ input port, a pass-through Gigabit PoE port capable of powering […]

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Sony Debuts New C-Series, B-Series Crystal LEDs

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Sony Electronics just debuted two new Crystal LEDs in the form of the C-series (ZRD-C12A/C15A) with high contrast and B-series (ZRD-B12A/B15A) with high brightness. Both new displays are available in two pixel pitch sizes (P1.26-millimeter and P1.58-millimeter) for different installation needs and expand the lineup of Sony’s Crystal LED for various applications including corporate showrooms, […]

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My New Year’s Resolution Is to Obtain a CTS Certification. Come Study With Steph!

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It’s that time of year again where everyone makes ridiculous resolutions they probably won’t keep. Instead of doing all that this year, I wanted to make a resolution that would be achievable — no matter how hard it seems. So, I am studying to get my CTS! To keep me accountable, my co-workers at rAVe […]

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The Top 10 Stories of 2020

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2020 sucked! So, now that we got that out of the way, let’s review the top 10 AV, UCC and Digital Signage stories, according to data, in 2020! The top story of 2020 was the the acquisition of Whitlock by AVI-SPL. Marketed as a merger, this didn’t appear to be one in hindsight. Whitlock is now […]

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Pasternack Releases New Line of Bidirectional Amplifiers

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Pasternack released a new line of bidirectional amplifiers that are used to transmit high-resolution signals while amplifying Rx signals with advanced low-noise amplifier to produce the highest possible data rates. Pasternack has added four new models to its existing line of bidirectional amplifiers, making a total of six different models now available. This portfolio consists […]

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Who Doesn’t Want This in Their Home? The Ultimate At-Home Golf Simulator Is Now in a Packaged Solution From AV Planners

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AV Planners has partnered with a golf simulation solution Golfzon. With more than two million online members, Golfzon hosts an average of 300 amateur tournaments daily. Golfzon is available in 62 countries with 30,000 simulators in operation around the globe. Recognized by Golf Digest as the best golf simulator for four consecutive years, Golfzon is […]

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8K Association Updates Performance Spec for Mark Program

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The 8K Association (8KA) has published an updated performance specification for the 8K Association Certified mark program. TV shoppers looking for televisions that offer four times the resolution available from 4K TVs and that meet the high-performance standards of the 8K Association Certified program will benefit from the new broader performance requirements applied to 8K […]

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The Movie Theater Is Now Dead, Plus a Prediction: Apple Will Buy Sony

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As much as I hated writing that headline, it’s true. And, despite years of warnings that the future of the cineplex was nothing but apocalyptic, Hollywood wasn’t prepared. Let’s back-up. Back in the late ’90s, companies started building DVD servers for home theaters. The idea was that a homeowner could buy a cache of DVDs […]

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The Evolution of AV

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There’s no doubt the audiovisual industry has progressed a long way since the advent of the gramophone and cathode-ray tube. Innovations over the last 50 to 100 years have turned AV devices into the primary content-delivery system for almost every human on Earth, and definitely a requirement for every human not on Earth. These innovations […]

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Quality Versus Convenience

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Great salespeople are like ducks, paddling furiously under the water while appearing calm to the outside world. Think about what our great salespeople go through with every prospective customer (budget, authority, buying team, decision-makers, influencers, need, timeline, urgency, objectives, etc.) while focusing on the client’s needs. Sometimes we overlook the most basic and critical distinction […]

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Z-Wave Long Range Spec and Starter Kit Announced; Line of Sight Transmission is 1 Mile!

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The Z-Wave Alliance announced the Z-Wave Long Range (Z-Wave LR) specification is available for product development. Z-Wave LR connectivity enables new IoT applications beyond the home, without any need for repeaters, ensuring easy install and low cost. With a network size of up to 4,000 nodes, Z-Wave LR provides the scalability needed in MDU & […]

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Sanus Now Shipping Open-Frame Rack for AV Components and Network Servers

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Sanus announced that it’s now shipping a new compact, open-frame rack for housing AV components and network servers. Featuring a knock-down design, the 10U Stackable Skeleton Rack (CFR1610-B1) is compatible with existing Sanus Component Series skeleton racks and includes everything needed for quick and easy floor or wall mounting. Featuring a self-aligning design, the 10U […]

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SoundTube Releases 2-Channel Dante Amp With Built-In DSP

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SoundTube’s IPD-Hub 2 Amplifier is a two-channel Dante amp with DSP built-in. The amp is AES67 compatible and powered by PoE, PoE+ or 40-watt PoE. It includes an RJ45 Ethernet connection and can be used with Radio Design Labs Format A (RDL) or Attero Tech Axiom line level, mic level, balanced XLR or Bluetooth input […]

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Apple Moves to Secure Greater Slice of the Smart Speaker Pie

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By Patrick Montgomery Futuresource Consulting Apple’s November launch of the $99 HomePod Mini comes at a good time. As the smart speaker market starts to mature in key western markets such as the U.S. and U.K., it creates a direct competitor to devices from market leaders Amazon and Google, both of whom in recent months […]

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