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AV News

Coming Soon: McIntosh 12 Channel Power Amplifier – MI1250

Delivers Pristine Music Playback to Multiple Rooms for Whole House Audio.

Binghamton, NY – October 14, 2021 – McIntosh, the global leader in prestigious home entertainment and ultimate-quality audio for over 70 years, is proud to introduce the MI1250 12-Channel Power Amplifier.

The versatile McIntosh MI1250 12-Channel Amplifier can distribute pristine music playback in multiple rooms in a home. It delivers 50 Watts into 8 Ohm speakers or 90 Watts into 4 Ohm speakers via highly sophisticated closed loop digital switching amplifiers that are paired with extremely robust power supplies to produce performance levels that are rarely achieved in distributed audio.

The MI1250 has installer-friendly physical dimensions and is 2U rack mountable via the included mounting ears (the mounting ears are removable for non-rack installations). As a highly efficient Class D amplifier, it does not require noisy cooling fans to maintain nominal operating temperature.

On the front panel, multi-color LED indicators display the status of each channel. On the back are unbalanced inputs plus 2-pole Phoenix style push-in speaker terminals for each channel. Also located on the back are volume controls for volume balancing, along with 2 digital audio inputs (either coax or optical) that can be bussed, and channel summing circuits for easy mono signal distribution.

Other features included on the MI1250 are:

Power Guard® signal overload technology that prevents overdriving the speakers.

Sentry Monitor™ short-circuit protection circuit that disengages the output stage before current exceeds safe operating levels and then resets automatically when operating conditions return to normal.

BUS input and outputs to easily distribute a stereo signal to multiple outputs and/or multiple amplifiers.

 Individual channel inputs.

12 Volt triggering capabilities to automatically turn other connected McIntosh components on and off.

Eco-friendly on/off signal sensing that turns the unit off if no input signal has been detected for a set amount of time or automatically turns the amp on when it senses a signal.

The MI1250 includes many McIntosh design cues including a black glass front panel housing an illuminated McIntosh logo, along with a familiar form factor that is highlighted with silver trim. Contact a local McIntosh dealer to learn more about integrating the MI1250 into a custom whole house audio installation.

Pricing and Availability
Orders for the MI1250 can now be placed with Authorized McIntosh dealers with shipping expected to begin in late October or early November 2021 to the United States and Canada, and to the rest of the world shortly thereafter.

Suggested retail price (VAT, shipping and any customs duties related to current standards of individual countries are excluded): $4,000 USD.

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AV News

McIntosh Announce 8K Upgrade for MX123 AV Processor

Binghamton, NY – September 8, 2021 McIntosh, the global leader in prestigious home entertainment and ultimate-quality audio for over 70 years, is proud to announce an 8K compatibility upgrade for the MX123 A/V Processor.

Since it was launched in October 2019, the MX123 has become a must have audio and video processor for countless home theaters. It launched with 4K/60Hz compatibility, but as technology has progressed and as McIntosh adheres to its philosophy of continuous product improvement, all new MX123 A/V Processors shipping from the McIntosh factory starting in September 2021 will support 8K/60Hz and 4K/120Hz video resolutions and refresh rates. The MX123 will also be able to upscale lower resolutions to 8K. Of its 10 HDMI inputs and outputs, one of the inputs and two of the outputs will have 8K/60Hz and 4K/120Hz support (all 10 will continue to support 4K/60Hz). The three HDMI ports that are 8K/60Hz and 4K/120Hz compatible will also offer many other advanced features including Quick Media Switching (QMS); Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM); Quick Frame Transport (QFT); and Variable Refresh Rate (VRR).

All 10 of the HDMI ports support HDCP 2.3; Rec. 2020; 4:4:4 color spacing; Dynamic Lip-sync; and 3D Video pass-through. And all 10 will also now support a myriad of high dynamic range formats such as HDR (static HDR); Dynamic HDR; HDR10+; HLG; and Dolby Vision (including low latency).

In addition to these exciting video upgrades, the MX123 will continue to offer an impressive list of audio capabilities: 13.2 audio channels; Dolby Atmos (including Dolby Atmos Height Virtualizer); DTS:X Pro; Auro-3D; Sony’s 360 Reality Audio; MPEG-H Audio; IMAX Enhanced; eARC/ARC; Apple AirPlay 2; Bluetooth; Spotify Connect; and Audyssey MultEQ XT32. To facilitate integration into home automation systems, it also has Connects with Control4 Certification from Control4 and Works with Crestron Home certification from Crestron.

Pricing and Availability
MX123 8K units will start shipping from the McIntosh factory to their global dealer network beginning in September 2021. Orders can now be placed with Authorized McIntosh dealers. The 4K version of the MX123 is no longer available from McIntosh.

Suggested retail price (VAT, shipping and any customs duties related to current standards of individual countries are excluded): $8,500 USD.

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AV Blog AV News

Audio & Video Calibration – Why it is Required?

Most people are under the impression that whatever configuration of Audio & Video components that they have purchased, they will be delivering the experience right out of the box once they are installed. That there is no need for any sort of tinkering with the said equipment as it should be all done with by the manufacturers themselves. The truth is that each component that is selected by the end user is never calibrated to a set parameter due to the designer’s of the individual components not knowing the details of the end users specific rooms where their components are going to be installed, thereby it is next to impossible for an end user to expect that they will be getting the desired AV pleasure that they have dreamed of without getting the same calibrated by experienced & knowledgeable calibration experts. Unfortunately, the majority of these end users do not believe in the calibration process thereby missing out on the accuracy & clarity of the AV components for which they have spent a tidy sum of money! Most of these end users suffer from ear fatigue & in extreme cases do no enjoy the experience for which they have invested in due to absence of the desired calibration of the entire installation.

Content creators of movies, music, sports broadcast etc., have put in a lot of efforts to provide the entire experience to the end user, which unfortunately most of the end users do not realize, nor experience as desired.

The end users are under the impression that their respective dealers/system integrators, have done the necessary optimization of the set up that they have installed, but it is very rare that the same takes place as they a) haven’t been paid by the customer to do the needful or b) do not have the relevant experience & knowledge base to do the same.

Each component of a set up has certain criteria that needs to be factored in for calibration as the results vary for any installation right from when it is new, to having had certain amounts of ‘burn-in’ achieved by the number of hours the entire set up has been in operation. Hence the calibration is extremely critical & invaluable in achieving the desired levels of performance from the set up.

We at hifihunt.com have now established a team of professionals to do the needful, to not only ensure that the results of an individuals set up is optimised either from the beginning or subsequently get involved post installation of a setup done by others. Listed below are the Services Rendered for Residential & Commercial Installations:

Design

AV Integration

Acoustics Design

AV Product Selection

AV Consulting

Projector Screens

Wiring & Accessories

Distributed Audio

Hi End Audio

Hometheatre Solutions

Public Address Systems

AV Calibration

To get in touch for any of the above requirements, one can drop an email to “dave@hifihunt.com” post which we shall proceed with the requirements.

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AV Ads AV News

Clearaudio Concept Black Available At a Special Price

Clearaudio Concept Turntable with a black on black finish is currently available with us at a special price. For more details please contact: dave@hifihunt.com

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AV News

New Distribution Partner for Clearaudio & Inakustik in India

M/s. Innovative Information Technology have been appointed as the exclusive distribution company for CLEARAUDIO ELECTRONIC GMBH & in-akustik GmbH & Co. for India.

Contact us for pricing & other info.

We look forward to receiving review material as and when the pandemic situation improves.

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AV News

The 25 Years Entrepreneurial Journey of RONTEK Systems

The RONTEK Story

The real beginnings

The story of RONTEK actually goes back to when I was a teen.  Friends and relatives know me as ‘Ronny’.  I was interested in music and my first lessons came as a choir boy. My only musical possession back then was a cheap harmonica and a personal cassette player or ‘Walkman’. From the time I could remember, there was always great sounding music at my grandparents’ home, coming out of a DIY HiFi system – a tube amplifier and a loudspeaker made from packing material wood put together by my uncle, that played vinyl records. My uncle George, an ex-Airforce wireless and avionics technician was my inspiration to take up audio electronics as a hobby.

Realising the difference between schooling and education

I studied in a school that would be considered the epitome of the Indian education system. But I was an underachiever for most parts of my academic career. I struggled especially with languages like Hindi and Sanskrit.  They are beautiful languages, but you’ve got to love them to appreciate them. Coming from south of India and having to learn Geography and Social studies initially in Hindi probably destroyed my interest in studies early enough. I wasn’t great at Math or sports either. I was an “outstanding” student (More outside than in the class). Ironically, I was a class topper in electronics and scored a 100 in an International certification exam later on to do with what I loved, Audio and Video. Physics and electronics came to me naturally and I would buy books from the roadside store and experiment with audio circuits. I had to open radios, amplifiers and electronic stuff and figure out things on my own. Much later in life I had the wonderful opportunity to travel to many countries to unlearn, learn, intern and get certified in my field of audio and video integration.

Discovering music, audio electronics and the entrepreneur

When I was at my grandparents’ place, I would try to work on scales by myself with uncle Benny’s guitar.  My dad made me an offer that he would get me a guitar if I came within the first 10 ranks in class.  Both of which didn’t happen then. However during summer vacation, I got my first guitar and joined a class and soon realised that I had a flair for it.  My first performance with just three major chords and a minor was within 10 days of me getting the guitar, to an audience of around 100. 

In about a year, I started to play the harmonica and guitar together with a harmonica brace I fabricated using a steel rod and wooden grips. I then made an electronic drum-beat metronome and found ways to amplify my guitar with a pickup. I had also put together an ampli-speaker to play guitar. 

Next project was to amplify my ‘Walkman’ and so I built a 3-way speaker and a stereo amplifier system. Those days, in known circles, only someone with a rich relative from the Gulf or US would have a proper Hifi at home. But this stuff I put together to amplify a personal cassette player soon caught the attention of a few of my friends. I got requests from two of them to build something similar.  Next, their friends came with similar requests and they were willing to pay me including my profit. That then was my first peek into entrepreneurship, while I was still in college.  I remember printing the brand ‘RONTEK’ made from alphabets peeled off a golden alphabet sticker sheet from a stationary store. 

When I got to college is when I discovered my kind of music:  genres ranging from Country, Rock, Jazz, Surf and Gospel rock.  I would play ‘Sultans of Swing’ and ‘Smoke on the water’ over and over on the Stereo I built.  While it didn’t make any musical sense to folks at home, it was something ‘magical’ I had discovered. The love for music and audio electronics matured and grew well into my college and work days. 

NCC and my childhood dream

I had spent considerable period of my academic life as an Air wing NCC cadet.  It was a para military training that changed my life for-ever.  I had the wonderful opportunity to learn aero-modelling, fly gliders, shoot targets with real guns, para-sailing, rock-climbing and attend para-military and leadership training camps.  This helped me greatly later as an entrepreneur especially during the struggle days.  The qualities of courage, discipline, grit, resilience, determination, adaptation, working with and leading a team are skills that NCC developed in me that helped me survive and lead in an industry I chose for 25 years now. I must have seen ‘Top Gun’ at-least 50 times and I had dreamt of becoming a fighter pilot during my youth days. When this didn’t happen, fortunately I stopped dreaming and quickly picked up my passion instead.

Founding RONTEK

After 6 years of employment in various Power Electronics, IT hardware companies, I had acquired a wide exposure from technical, product management, to Sales and Marketing. I took the plunge at age 27 to start my entrepreneurial journey in 1996 with one employee in a 10’ x 10’ room at my dad’s place with a capital of Rupees twenty thousand that I had saved up. I didn’t spend too much time thinking of a name for the business. ’RONTEK’ it was, although sometimes I have thought, I should have got a little more creative with the name.  Initially I pursued a ‘niche’ need of the market in terms of power electronics and served the telecom and weighing scale industry.  But it was my long-term passion for audio electronics that made me make a swift diversification into audio electronics couple of years later.  Audio products from RONTEK soon found its way to retail and hospitality industry and homes.  Today, even though RONTEK has grown many times over, it has been the passion that has guided the business to newer areas of audio and power electronics.

‘Making in India’ and the Empowered Women of RONTEK

Around 2011 is when we hired a young lady to work for RONTEK  for the first time.  Jastina came from a humble background with a distinction in Electronics. RONTEK at that time had taken a break from manufacturing our own products and was representing other multinational brands as a system integrator. In 2012 we slowly started getting back to the manufacturing business and Jastina took charge of production.  We had around 7 women who worked in the production line at that time.  Between 2013 and 2015 is when we transitioned from being an AV systems integration company back to a manufacturing company.  It was a decision taken from the heart and the price we had to pay initially was dear. Manufacturing in India in a space dominated by big names with manufacturing mostly sourced from China This didn’t look like a fair competition. RONTEK was almost getting bankrupt.

In 2014, Royal Enfield was planning expansion with showrooms across the country and were looking for a vendor to design, supply and install in-store audio systems. We were introduced to them by one of our satisfied customers who had worked briefly for Royal Enfield. They gave us an initial trial order.

In 2015, We took part in an exhibition for retail atmospherics (In-Store Asia). Three of us drove down to Mumbai for a week to set-up and man the stall and did most of the things ourselves to keep costs low. The first day, not a single inquiry.  The second day, some lukewarm interest. Third day, nothing different. By the second half of the last day, I had started getting frustrated and regretted my decision to participate in the exhibition which was expensive, not to mention the time and effort put into setting up and manning the stall.  During the dying hours of the exhibition, the in-house architect from Royal Enfield happened to visit our stall and was studying our systems and listening to the music being played while I was attending to another visitor. When I was free, she complimented me for the progress and improvement in our design.  And then she made an offer.  “A new store is opening at Bandra tomorrow. Can you install your system tonight and complete it in all aspects and clear site before 6:00 AM tomorrow?”  I took a moment with my people and confirmed that whatever is displayed at the stall now could be installed at the store.  She gave us a verbal confirmation and said that the official work order would follow when she would be back at her office in Chennai.  After the conclusion of the exhibition, and obtaining the gate pass, we drove straight to Bandra and started the installation right from ‘scratch’, wiring and all.

We completed the work by mid-night and headed back to where we stayed. A month later we were invited for a vendor meeting at Royal Enfield, Chennai and after negotiations, we were awarded the work to install business music systems at 480 Royal Enfield showrooms across the country.  This truly was a new chapter for RONTEK. 

The easiest and practical thing to do was to import a container of 500 systems from China, white-labelled with our brand.  But we decided that we are going to do everything possible in India.  Initially it was a slow process. Eventually we learnt to scale using the available local ecosystem. We have by now been the sole vendor and have completed over 650 stores, experience and training centres for Royal Enfield across India, Nepal and Sri Lanka.  We were rated highly as a vendor and when key people switched to Mahindra Jawa, we were called to do all the 200 plus stores for Jawa as well.

RONTEK was beginning to find its purpose, mission and vision.  Many women from humble backgrounds learnt a skill and were getting empowered to take care of their homes through the work we provided.  Some of these women come from rural outskirts of Bangalore and were eventually finding it difficult to commute spending long hours in traffic to get to work and back.  RONTEK then helped two families construct sheds on lands belonging to them.  Work now happens from rural India too and this is our vision of growth while we continue manufacturing in India with a rural development program.

Staying relevant with young blood

In 2017, Chedup Lepcha in his 20s with a Masters in Applied Economics and a passion to sell interned with RONTEK for around a year.  Soon he found himself a perfect fit in the company’s culture and business trajectory and in his new role in RONTEK as head of business development and operations. The transition was perfect. Everyone at RONTEK, even long-term employees of 20 plus years in the company accepted his leadership well.  This allowed me to hand over the reins of operations and business development to Chedup, while iI could go back to innovations, improvement and development of new products. Anil and Roger who have been with RONTEK twenty and ten plus years respectively have been my pillar of support in handling many diverse needs of the business. My son Rajat, still in college helped us put together a digital touch screen panel that one of our clients wanted us to do for over 200 stores across the country. This was truly a diversification that has kept RONTEK relevant to meet the needs of our customers. This also opened possibilities to keep ourselves relevant in current and future areas that will be dominated by IT and AI.

Manufacturing for other brands (OEM)

By 2018, we had started OEM manufacturing for other brands. We were manufacturing one product which was an audio equipment for safety and evacuation for an American fortune 100 company. During the pandemic, they approached us with a requirement of 18 products they were pulling out of China and that needed to be manufactured in India. They gave us the option to pick whatever was doable by us.  We pitched for 6 out of which 4 were approved. When they saw our progress, they gave us 6 more.  RONTEK had earned their trust as we had promptly resolved all issues that came up during the initial days. 

Now this is heading in a direction I had never dreamt.  I had once dreamt of becoming a fighter pilot to serve my country perhaps.  But now I get to serve my customers, the people who I work with and my country at large in more ways than I had imagined.  And the only thing I’m armed with to my teeth is …my passion! 

And all this would not have been possible without the four angels in my life: my  mother, my wife, my sister and my daughter who have been my constant source of encouragement and support.

From ‘Military patriotism’ to ‘Economic patriotism’ and from wanting to “Break the Sound Barrier” to  “Breaking Barriers to Good Sound”, the journey has been challenging and exciting. 

Author’s Note:

We can be immensely proud of Jacob, a good friend of ours, for sharing his story & that of RONTEK with us and heartily wish him & his entire family at RONTEK, the very best & may their endeavors continue to go even farther. We are also very proud to share their success story on our platform to create awareness not only about their good work but also that of setting an example of ‘Make In India’ achieved successfully. We hope that the success story of RONTEK inspires more of our brethren & youngsters to pursue their passion and scale new heights in any field they aspire to be in.

To get in touch with RONTEK, pls visit their website

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AV News

Project Audio System’s RPM5 Complete Edition Now Available in India

The RPM 5 Carbon Complete Edition which retails at 275000/- is now available with a bunch of accessories bundled with it at a very special price. Please send an email to :- recordplayer.in@gmail.com for further information.

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AV News

Monitor Audio New Bronze 6G Series now in India

Monitor Audio’s new Bronze 6G Series,have arrived out which the Bronze 50 & Bronze 200 are now available. For further details, please contact-  dave@hifihunt.com

Bronze 50 Weblink

Bronze 200 Weblink

About Bronze 6G Series: ”

The Bronze Series loudspeakers have been carefully designed to offer Monitor Audio’s British personality with an attractive contemporary touch. Featuring a complete upgrade for superior sound and build quality, everything was created with you in mind.

The fresh cabinet designs have clean and simple lines, and are available in a choice of four contemporary finishes (White, Walnut, Urban Grey and Black), with a sleek contrasting baffle and matching magnetic cloth-covered grille for an understated appearance.

One of the most eye-catching features of the speakers are the acoustically transparent hexagonal dispersion patterns on the tweeter cover. Bronze speakers are a true part of the prestigious Monitor Audio speaker family as the hexagonal design also features on our award-winning Silver and Gold series. This design gives Bronze a premium feel, allowing light to catch the distinctive gold tweeter dome behind the grille.

The Bronze speakers are undoubtedly in a different class. Premium gold-plated terminals and Pureflow silver-plated oxygen-free copper internal cabling offer pure and secure cable connectivity. As you would expect with Monitor Audio, the Bronze Series delivers an industry-leading sound. We have used our five decades of design heritage to ensure that our speakers offer an unforgettable performance wherever they are positioned in the home.

The Bronze Series features a new Uniform Dispersion (UD) Waveguide, which combines with our signature C-CAM Gold Dome Tweeter to give even sound dispersion, improved time alignment and wider directivity for lifelike sound.

Improved C-CAM Drivers have been specially engineered using conical diaphragm geometry for increased control and Damped Concentric Mode (DCM) technology for a more accurate time response. The drivers also feature a larger diameter voice coil to allow production of higher sound pressure levels. These design enhancements allow the Bronze Series to deliver a smoother tighter bass.

Since its first launch two decades ago, the multi award-winning Bronze Series has set the standard as a class leader and today there are thousands of satisfied owners across the globe.

With a choice of eight models, including our first Dolby Atmos® enabled speaker module, all of the Bronze speakers have been designed to please any music or movie lover. Their attractive design and choice of finishes ensures that they will complement any room in the home.

The Bronze Series loudspeakers have been carefully designed to offer Monitor Audio’s British personality with an attractive contemporary touch. Featuring a complete upgrade for superior sound and build quality, everything was created with you in mind.

The fresh cabinet designs have clean and simple lines, and are available in a choice of four contemporary finishes (White, Walnut, Urban Grey and Black), with a sleek contrasting baffle and matching magnetic cloth-covered grille for an understated appearance.

One of the most eye-catching features of the speakers are the acoustically transparent hexagonal dispersion patterns on the tweeter cover. Bronze speakers are a true part of the prestigious Monitor Audio speaker family as the hexagonal design also features on our award-winning Silver and Gold series. This design gives Bronze a premium feel, allowing light to catch the distinctive gold tweeter dome behind the grille.

The Bronze speakers are undoubtedly in a different class. Premium gold-plated terminals and Pureflow silver-plated oxygen-free copper internal cabling offer pure and secure cable connectivity. As you would expect with Monitor Audio, the Bronze Series delivers an industry-leading sound. We have used our five decades of design heritage to ensure that our speakers offer an unforgettable performance wherever they are positioned in the home.

The Bronze Series features a new Uniform Dispersion (UD) Waveguide, which combines with our signature C-CAM Gold Dome Tweeter to give even sound dispersion, improved time alignment and wider directivity for lifelike sound.

Improved C-CAM Drivers have been specially engineered using conical diaphragm geometry for increased control and Damped Concentric Mode (DCM) technology for a more accurate time response. The drivers also feature a larger diameter voice coil to allow production of higher sound pressure levels. These design enhancements allow the Bronze Series to deliver a smoother tighter bass.

Since its first launch two decades ago, the multi award-winning Bronze Series has set the standard as a class leader and today there are thousands of satisfied owners across the globe.

With a choice of eight models, including our first Dolby Atmos® enabled speaker module, all of the Bronze speakers have been designed to please any music or movie lover. Their attractive design and choice of finishes ensures that they will complement any room in the home.”

Categories
AV News

What HiFi Show 2020 – Mumbai (Part 2)

16th Floor:

1601 – LG ELECTRONICS INDIA LTD.

The new ThinQ AI series of OLED TV’s were showcased along with 3 models of the XBoom Series of karaoke audio systems were on demo. A nice and unexpected addition to the hifi show.

1602 – RECLINERS INDIA PVT. LTD.

Besides the regular recliner models on demo/display, a new recliner model was shown for the first time. The Ancona model was redefining luxury and comfort, their tag line to differentiate from the other recliners available in the market. The Ancona is a modular recliner solution that allows a customer to add on and customise with certain options and features. Clearly, a step ahead from the rest of the recliners available and one that will surely sell well, given its price point and appeal to most families wanting to sit comfortably in their lounge, living rooms.

1603 – NEDIS

The usual display of cables and accessories from Bandridge, Sweex, Profigold, aside from Thonet & Vander speakers & soundbar were showcased along with two Chinese turntables that were re branded under Nedis brand.

1604 – LUXURY PERSONIFIED LLP (DEVIALET)

The same layout as we have been seeing at each show, Devialet Phantom Speakers in their various incarnations & versions were on static and active display, along with their accessories.

1605 – SENNHEISER

Sennheiser’s much touted Ambeo Soundbar was on demo, though getting to hear it was quite a challenge as they were limiting visitors to enter the room periodically. Even though the number of visitors was limited, for some reason we never got a chance to get in the room and had all but given up on the opportunity to have a listen but on Sunday during the fag end of the show we got lucky to get entry!

The gent giving the demo had taken pains to explain the features of the Ambeo Soundbar and also provide a demonstration that highlighted the salient features of the same, which was very helpful to the visitors in order to understand why the Ambeo Soundbar justifies its asking price of Rupees Two Lakhs. We nonetheless see the Ambeo Soundbar having potential but still would like to have hands on time with it to really ascertain with regard to its atmos capabilities in certain nonconducive  environments, thereby clearing some doubts on the same.

1609 – ACOUSTIC PORTRAIT

The same set up comprising of Speakers, Amplifier and Source as shown in the Hyderabad show in September 2019 were showcased here along with some new desktop speakers (DS401) having Scan-Speak full range drivers enclosed in a transmission line cabinet were on demo along with a Swara integrated Amplifier, using a visitors mobile phone as a source, if one wished to hear these speakers. We have already written about what we felt about the main set up in the What HiFi Show Hyderabad, the link to which is HERE.

We loved the desktop speakers for what they do as well as the concept, the price of Rupees Nineteen Thousand seems reasonable in our humble opinion.

It is always a pleasure meeting Siva, the man behind Acoustic Portrait. Secondly, his recordings of Indian Classical music is spectacular to say the very least, which fortunately are available as paid downloads via his website, in mp3 and flac format. Do visit Acoustic Portrait

 

1610 – SONY (VIDEO & AUDIO EXHIBITION)

Lots of prerequisites were required in order to gain entry to this room! Firstly, one had to fill a form asking all sorts of visitor information, after which one was asked to return at a certain time of the day, after which one yet had to wait outside the room, then if they were lucky enough, they got the privilege of finally entering the room! We weren’t fortunate enough to visit the room and hence aren’t able to report on what was showcased or on demo. As per the standee placed outside their room, a 4K projector, Dolby Atmos soundbar and noise cancellation headphones were on demo.

1611 – GENELEC

A world premiere of Genelec’s flagship models 8361A SAM Studio Monitors, along with W371A SAM Woofer System were on demo along with static display of the 8000 series of studio monitors. Another interesting product that was showcased was the 4430A Smart IP speaker, showcasing audio transmission over IP, thereby eliminating the need for powering each speaker at the same time enabling the end user to operate a multitude of speakers installed in a huge area via the dedicated Genelec software and APP.

Coming back to the main attraction, the 8361A+W371A combo was magnificent to say the very least, though their true capabilities could not be showcased in the small room as desired. Nonetheless, at Rupees Thirty Two Lakhs, one has a world class system that can do a lot of things be it for working in studio environments or perform duties in a audiophiles lair.

1612 – MZ AUDIO DISTRIBUTION

Home Theatre:

Q Acoustics Concept Speakers were showcased in a multichannel demonstration using Marantz flagship Processor and Power Amplifier combo.

Stereo:

Q Acoustics Concept 300 speakers with Marantz 8000 Series Amplifier and CD Player were paired for demo duties. When we visited, they only had an Andrea Bocelli CD, which played end to end on repeat for the visitors wanting to hear this set up.

1613 – VIEWSONIC

Off late, Viewsonic India has been working very hard to increase their presence in the home projector segment and to ensure that, they have been consistently introducing new models at a frequent rate. They have also been focusing on launching models that are not only lamp free but also those that meet various requirements of the end user, reflecting in their models being suitable for portability, short throw and 4k UHD performance. We hope to be reviewing some of their models in the future.

1614 – PANASONIC INDIA PVT. LTD.

The focus in their room was more towards projectors used for the corporate industry, reflecting in the models on static and active demo. There were quite a few visitors already in the room so decided to move to the next room (Covid-19 Measures)

1615 – A.K. INTERNATIONAL (MONSTER)

As is customary with their participation, they had static display of Monster Cables range of products that included cables and accessories. Just a quick glance and we were done!

1616 – S.R. BROTHERS (XGIMI)

Having taken part for the first time in the What HiFi Show, they put up an excellent display of XGIMI portable projectors that they not only demonstrated adequately but also answered the questions that were being asked, convincingly and in desired manner, so kudos to S.R. Brothers for being great exhibitors. For a product line that is new to our projector market in India, they surely will benefit from going to the end user to show their product line up strengths in order to successfully create a niche market for themselves. We also look forward to reviewing a couple of their models in the future.

1617 – LITTLE NAP RECLINERS

Except for a few minor changes to certain models, they showcased what is pretty much seen for a while now in the various shows they take part in, so we really do not have anything more to add with regard to their showing.

1618 – OPTOMA PROJECTORS

The show stopper product as touted by What Hifi Show organisers, the UST P1 was on demo in their room along with the UHD50X, which is the world’s first 240Hz refresh rate 4K UHD cinema gaming projector.

Optoma India too is currently in the midst of reorganising/shuffling its team in place and probably with these movements taking place, we shall see the company getting more involved and aggressive with regard to the projector segment in India. We sure would love to have more time with the UHD50X, if not the P1, but currently we shall probably have to be patient till the new team settles down and takes things forward.

 

1619 – NEXUS AUDIO (PMC SPEAKERS)

The twenty5 series of loudspeakers from PMC were showcased here which consisted of the twenty5.24 as fronts (L/R), twenty5c as the centre and a pair of twenty5.23 as surrounds. Yes, there was no subwoofer, meaning this was a pure 5.0 speakers set up. Amplification was courtesy, the Denon AVR-X8500H and the source used was an Oppo 103, through which Blu-ray music concert disc’s were played. LG’s NanoCell  AI ThinQ 4k 75 inch Super UHD TV was the display.

Khushrau Jilla(KJ), the magician behind Nexus Audio always has some tricks up his sleeves. That was yet again evident in the way he had set up the speakers, notably the positioning of surround speakers and the omission of a sub woofer, which had a telling effect on all who heard the set up in the room. That the telling effect was that of disbelief is a forgone conclusion but still one that only those who experienced could say so.

To us, this set up was the signal of KJ coming back to his best and showcasing what can be achieved with the combination of the right products and practical hands on knowledge/experience.

Scintillating selection of demonstration material added the proverbial ‘Cherry on the Cake’

When you see hardened and seasoned industry professionals having their jaws drop, that’s exactly when you realise the devastating levels of the said demonstration had reached its absolute peak.

Chapeau time indeed!

1620 – AUDIOVISION INDIA (BOWERS & WILKINS, ROTEL, KIMBER, SOUNDCAST)

Audiovision are usually known for have static displays of the brands they represent, but this time we were pleasantly surprised to experience an active demonstration of Bowers & Wilkins Formation range of active wireless speakers, for which we are not only glad but also ecstatic! The formation range of wireless speakers are the current product range under the spotlight and are equally important for Bowers & Wilkins to present to the world as this range is what they expect to be of significant value to the new generation of prospective buyers across the globe. Audiovision had the entire formation range on active demonstration, be it for multichannel or stereo. We were certainly impressed with the formation product range and hope that more music enthusiasts also get an opportunity to listen to them in the future. In addition to the formation speakers, the PX5 & PX7 headphones were also available for listening duties.

They also had a Rotel A14 Integrated Amplifier paired with the Bowers & Wilkins 607 Book Shelf speakers, along with the Formation Audio wireless audio hub, hooked up to showcase how a passive audio set up can be integrated with the multiroom audio formation network of products.

With that, this concludes the coverage of the What HiFi Show Mumbai 2020. We now hope that the Covid 19 pandemic ends quickly so that we all can get back to going about our normal lifestyle, the world over and that we are able to enjoy meeting friends and family. Stay happy, safe and remain calm in these trying times. Best wishes to all!

 

 

 

 

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AV News

What HiFi Show 2020 – Mumbai (Part 1)

In light of the current scenario of Covid 19 pandemic that has wreaked havoc all over the world, it was still astonishing to see that the show took place to begin with. The organisers, hotel and exhibitors must have all collectively sighed a huge relief that they could all continue to carry on ‘business as usual’ as things quickly got out of hand in the days that followed.

Was it right to continue with the show, what with so many international shows which are much larger & reputable in nature cancelling one after the other is something that did play in the minds of a lot of people who are part of the circuit as well as that of the target audience that definitely had the resulting impact on the show in more ways than one.

Firstly, the number of exhibitors was very small and to be honest laughable to have a show to begin with.

Secondly, the turnout of the visitors was also low, but then that was to be expected keeping the nature of the beast we are all grappling with, in mind.

The show did go on and remarkably all that were part of it be it via organising, exhibiting or attending have not been exposed to the dreaded virus or we hope so!

Plenty of things to ponder on and for sure would have been discussed behind closed doors but anyhow, this is all in the past now, so let’s get to the show coverage itself.

This year the show was split into 2 floors only, the 8th & 16th.

8th Floor :

Benq:

Using the large stateroom to show case as many models as they could Benq Showcased every model worth their salt in all angles possible. Plenty to see (all in the dark that is) but nothing that really stood out worth talking about. Thankfully no crowding otherwise it would definitely be avoided at all costs!

PTC:

Having taken two state rooms, one of them had a static display largely consisting of Monitor Audio Speakers, from their various ranges.

The new Bronze Series(not yet officially launched) was occupying the lion’s share of the room, by means of static display, though we can’t write anything further or show pics as per instructions of PTC.

The Platinum Series speakers of Monitor Audio, along with Accuphase E480 Integrated Amplifier with Denon DCD1600 NE were to be on demo, though when we visited the same wasn’t connected which was a shame.

The adjoining stateroom had a Dolby Atmos enabled Home Theatre demonstration that was consisting of Ascendo loudspeakers, powered by a Storm Audio processor and Powersoft amplifiers. Very loud and lots of bang bang!

That ends the coverage of the 8th floor.