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Sonance Professional Series Speakers

Sonance have designed a great new range of Professional Series loud speakers for commercial or residential applications. All speakers in the range are selectable for 70V, 100V or 8 Ohm applications. The range provides solutions for In-ceiling, Surface mounting, Hanging Pendants and Landscape installation. The products provide complete flexibility to design and create a Bespoke installation where you can mix and match across the complete range of Sonance speakers.

My favourite speaker in this range is the Pendant which is such a great speaker when you have high roof or open beam structures. The Pendant is suitable for both indoor and outside installation. The Pendant is available in 3 different sizes also a standalone woofer, used when more immersive bass is required. Pendants and Surface mounting speakers are available in Black or White and all speakers in the range are suitable for custom painting as required.

For more info Sonance Professional Series visit http://www.sonance.com/professionalseries

Panasonic 2018 TV range

Panasonic has recently launched its 2018 TV Range which is due for release in Australia starting early July. This promises to be the best offering from the Japanese manufacturer in recent time. The premium “Prosumer” Series of OLED TV’s available in 2 x 55″ and 2 x 65″ models priced from $3,849.00-$7,149.00 AUD. are reported to provide the closest experience to professional grade studio image reproduction just as the Hollywood film makers intended.

The new HCX image processor (stands for Hollywood Cinema Experience) is said to provide exceptional Black levels and colour Gamut of 1 billion shades. It now boasts a new feature, Dynamic LUC (look-up Table) used by Hollywood Post-Production Studios to provide colour accuracy.

2018 models including UHD LED models provide multi-format HDR support, twin HD tuner and have an Art Glass one piece finish on the front.

The range topping OLED FZ1000U models in 55″and 65″ feature integrated blade speaker tuned by Technics providing a realistic sound stage

All UHD and HD models available in the 2018 range are featuring the new Panasonic My Home Screen 3.0 platform making it easy to access Apps and stream your favourite movies or clips in both 4K and HDR on compatible models.

If your interested, the full specs on the 2018 Panasonic range can be found here

New generation of iPort mounting solutions is refined in function and aesthetics

iportiPort have been making mounting and charging solutions for Apple products since the first iPod revolutionised the way we listen to music setting the foundation for the Apple products of today. iPort Launchport and iPort Control Mount have been around for long time now but it’s the latest generation of mounting solutions which are more refined in function and aesthetics also simple to install.
LaunchPort
Control Mount

The new iPort Surface Mount is a great quality product used for wall mounting your iPad, providing control solutions in Audio Visual Systems, Home Automation or App control of many different IP connected devices. The iPort mounting solution provides reliable and simple Power Over Ethernet connectivity for powering your iPad, also connecting it with Ethernet to your network. Surface Mount is available to fit most iPad models in Black, Silver and White and is made from high grade Aluminum to complement your iPad’s finish.

More detailed information and video on the Surface Mount system can be found here

The new iPort Luxeport is another great iPad mounting solution for retail POS, Reception Desks, Education, Restaurants, Caravans and RV vehicles, Home Automation and Audio Visual control. Luxeport allows you to keep the iPad device portable or Locked as you require and can be mounted on Desktop or Vertical surfaces like walls or joinery etc. Like the surface mount there are 3 x different ways to keep your idevice charged, POE, Mains adapter or Standalone POE Injector allowing for standard CAT cabling infrastructure to power your device remotely over long cable runs.

More information and video on the Luxeport system can be found here.

What make a HDMI cable suitable for use with 4K UHD Devices

Currently with more Video On Demand services (EG. Apple TV ,Netflicks, Stan & Telstra TV) offering an increased variety of 4K UHD content what makes the cables that connect your devices compliant?

Your HDMI cables will need to support up-to 18Gbps data transfer speeds to be compliant with the 4K standard which can include additional features like High Dynamic Range, 12bit colour and Dolby Vision.

If you have a Audio Visual Receiver included in your system it will need to also support 4K and will have to be HDCP2.2 compliant for the 4K devices to communicate with each other to display 4K.

So if you have all your devices 4k compliant (HDCP2.2)some signs that your cables are not 18Gbps rated could include images with pixels that look like sparkle or in the extreme, black and white pixels filling the entire display.

Good HDMI cables do not have to be expensive. The difference between cables that support and pass 18Gbps is usually in the design and materials the cable is manufactured from. Some examples below.

  • Flexibility to stop twists and kinks, bends nicely and easy to manage. This helps with installation in joinery etc. keeping it neat and tidy
  • Connector Size and design needs to be strong and small for easier installation behind wall mounted TV’s and inside joinery
  • Will have good quality metal on the connector to resist corrosion
  • Available in many different lengths

If you would like to find out more and take a look at some examples then check this link.

4K projection is now making sense for your home theatre

If you are thinking of installing a new Home Theatre or considering upgrading your existing room, now 4K Ultra High Definition is starting to make sense. Technology has now reached a level where the costs are comparable to other good quality HD projectors.

With many more Post Codes around Australia now migrating across to the NBN which is providing them with network speeds to access content much faster and easier than previously experienced with their ADSL connections, streaming has become a much better way to view your favourite Movies, TV series, Sport and Music. More and more services are now offering 4K UHD content due to the uptake of 4K UHD TV’s and devices sold around the globe. Some of the popular media players are Kodi, Nvidia, Apple TV, Fetchtv.

Optoma projection have broken new ground in 4K big screen Home Cinema with the latest model release Optoma UHD65, 4K UHD DLP projector.

This projector has an RRP in Australia of $5299.00 which is currently the cheapest 4K offering in the Home Theatre market segment. The UHD65 and others are now making the installation of a 100-180″ 4K UHD screen an affordable reality. Importantly the UHD65 also supports the HDR10 standard which basically means its capable of producing a greater difference in Contrast from the dark to light with a wider range of colour (you will be familiar with HDR on your phone camera or UHD TV’s etc). Pocket Lint has a good article on HDR.

Alternatively other 4K models from BenQ and Vivitek are also available at slightly higher price point and I’m sure there will be more models from other manufactures available around this price point in the market soon.

I hope this short article including the links have given you an insight into the possibilities and the current direction Home Theatre projection is moving today.

Choosing Speakers for your Home Theatre

There are many different types of speakers for all different budgets and preferences on the market. The best way to start thinking about which brands and models to choose is consider what would be your primary use – music or movies. People who primarily use their systems for movies often prefer concealed types of speakers, the ones that can be installed behind the projection screen. These are also cheaper than installing a boxed speaker behind the screen.

Sonance

Sonance have a great Cinema series of concealed speakers suited to different budgets. There are also options for surround sound and Dolby Atmos set up. This is a great option for a high quality theatre as they use a high-end features from more expensive models on their lower budget range. The next step up from here would be a higher level cabinet speakers. These can be installed on the ceiling or in the wall. Being in enclosed cabinets theres is a a greater consistency of sound, as it’s all coming from a box designed to deliver that consistency. As the speakers go up in price they have better quality sound, delivered by better drivers and tweeters. Sonance website is very helpful if you are considering that brand, easy to choose the models and budgets. Sonance is a good brand to go with if you’d like your speakers to have a minimal visual impact on your room.

Monitor audio

Monitor audio is another great brand of speakers for home theatres with their Silver series, and Silver 6G.  Their built quality and finishes are exceptional. They have that audio grade look and feel, so this brand is great for someone who likes to have their speakers positioned prominently in the room. Their magnetic grills can also be removed for those who like to be able to see the drivers. They look and sound great at a good price as well, compared to other brands’ similar level speakers. Monitor Audio speakers can also have dedicated Dolby Atmos ceiling speakers for movie sound effects.

These speakers are great for music lovers, ideally if you have a dedicated room, where you can turn the music up without disturbing anyone. You can tune the set up for stereo and sit in the optimal place for the best listening experience. For this you would switch to a 5 channel stereo and turn off the surround sound. In the theatre set up you would leave left and right speakers as full range, so when you go back to stereo for music you will have that full range available.

Choosing speakers, like most things, comes down to personal preference and how you intend on using them – more movies or more music. Sonance were primarily designed as home theatre speakers that also do music well. Monitor Audio started as a music speaker maker primarily, that also crossed over into home theatres. More typically a true 3-way box speaker would reproduce more detail in music as well as the look for those who appreciate this.

We recommend equipment that we consider good quality and value. This is not an advertisement or an affiliate content. If you have any questions or would like to discuss your installation – feel free to contact us.

Considering cables

There are a lot of cables on the market, from cheap options on eBay and Jaycar to expensive professional grade products. Is it worth spending a bit more on cables and how can your cable choice can affect your technology, here are a few things to consider.

Often cheaper cables are hard to manage, they don’t bend very well and can be a bit too long or too short. Long leftover cables can create messy areas and if there’s a need to trace a cable or reconnect equipment – messy cables can be frustrating. If there is an issue somewhere it might be hard to identify with messy cables. Better quality cables for professional installation will be optimal length, they can be managed better, bend and fit into the right areas, and as a result look and function well for year to come.

Better materials used in better cables (like Auqioquest http://www.audioquest.com/) perform better from the connection point of view, where cheaper cables might have a shorter life span with maintaining good connections.

Sometimes cables need to run longer distances, and extenders need to be used. They can facilitate extend connectivity up to 100m or longer. These will often incorporate infra red, so the remote will work where the monitor or the TV is. Also common these days using extenders with standard ethernet cables to set up multiple receivers and transmitters. Changing channels on the receivers switching between available transmitters. This is often suitable for large homes or commercial premises. Cabling technology like HDBaseT allows high quality uncompressed HD multimedia content, audio & video, ethernet, etc. The price of these has come down a bit making it more affordable for wider use. For example a 20m HDMI cable will have a similar cost to the HDBaseT transmitter/receiver unit, but you will have additional features. Also products like Video over IP allow access and control of video over the network. 

Devices are becoming more network based, including audio/visual, security and automation. And so for everything to function well good quality network cabling is very important. Investing in a good cabling infrastructure is well worth it also because it doesn’t usually go out of date, and in most cases the new devices and networks will be relying on it for best flexibility for installation.

We recommend equipment that we consider good quality and value. This is not an advertisement or an affiliate content. If you have any questions or would like to discuss your installation – feel free to contact us.