CEDIA 2009 Preview

August 27, 2009

cedia2009The 20th annual CEDIA Expo (Atlanta September 9-13) may be our first look at some of the biggest CE introductions of 2010, or second looks at products introduced in years past, polished off with a few revisions. The cynic in me suspects the latter, but I’m ready and willing to be pleasantly surprised. Among the potential areas of excitement, 3D certainly ranks high. I’ve made no secret of my dislike of glasses based 3D but of course others can’t seem to get enough of the genre. One of the key things to keep an eye on (pun) this year will be 3D source material. We’ve already seen 3D capable displays, this year it’s the content providers turn to tip their hat. Without full-fledged studio support, 3D is just spoofs, goofs, and gimmicks.

In addition to 3D displays (and hopefully source equipment) I’m sure we’ll see some 240hz displays. Heck it wouldn’t shock me if some weisenheimer previews a 480hz set (that was a joke in more ways than one) and of course with that I’m sure some of them will feature HDMI 1.4. Personally, I’m more interested in LED backlit LCD’s and LED projectors. The life-span of LED’s is already impressive, now it’s time to ratchet up deployment and spec them in mid-range sets as well.

Aside from all the whiz-bang advancements in video, it would be nice to see some audio revelations as well. But as someone, who knows more about audio than I’ll ever have the chance to learn, said: “video is easy, it’s audio thats hard.” Sure DSP’s have improved over the years but at the end of the day, clean pre-amplifiers and high quality amplifiers don’t enjoy the generational leap(s) forward that video decoding benefits from. That said, I wouldn’t rule out serious advancements in audio performance over the next few years, namely in terms of digital room correction. This year’s CEDIA EXPO might be too early for those “next-gen” room correction products but they’re definitely on the way.

Another other area I’m keeping an eye on is the media server space. Like it or not, physical media is forced to share more and more virtual “shelf space” with digital distribution these days. Channels like YouTube, iTunes, Joost and alike, are gaining more and more traction in our home theaters; eventually the hardware manufacturers will respond with increased support. Obviously there are custom media servers that already address some of these sources, but I suspect more mainstream component manufacturers will eventually take note. Denon’s receivers already include support for things like internet radio, Rhapsody specifically, iPods, XM radio etc. Could native YouTube, Netflix, and or Amazon UnBox support be far off? And if so, what else could be on the horizon?



Posted by Bryan Greenway | | Filed Under Trade Shows


Comments

  • YouTube is working on becoming Netflix-like. Should be interesting to see how that goes. Will people leave Netflix for YouTube?

    I was hoping to make it to Cedia this year but not going to happen. I will look for your overview of what impressed you. I think they should skip the 480Hz and go straight to 960Hz. 🙂

  • YouTube is working on becoming Netflix-like. Should be interesting to see how that goes. Will people leave Netflix for YouTube?

    I was hoping to make it to Cedia this year but not going to happen. I will look for your overview of what impressed you. I think they should skip the 480Hz and go straight to 960Hz. 🙂