Bentley Motors, the 89-year-old, Volkswagen-owned manufacturer of bespoke luxury automobiles has decided that a high-end audio system would complete its definition of automotive excellence, choosing Salisbury-based audio manufacturer Naim to develop a "Naim For Bentley" system.
Sony has triumphed once again. The company that has until now held control of the dominant audio format, "Red Book" CD, and the dominant high-resolution audio format, SACD, will now dominate high-resolution video as well with its Blu-ray technology.
Don Bouchard, Ultralink/XLO Products' executive vice-president, succumbed February 7, 2008 from injuries he sustained in a motorcycle accident on December 15, 2007. Bouchard, riding with friends, had his front wheel drop into a hole in the pavement while traversing a railroad crossing and was thrown over his handlebars. The resulting injuries included a severe skull fracture, right-brain trauma, a broken clavicle, a broken rib, which punctured a lung, as well as internal trauma, multiple contusions, and bruising.
Logitech's Squeezebox Network Systems has added a new model, the Duet, which adds a 2.4" color-LCD screen and a scroll-wheel to the unit's hand-held remote (not unlike the Sonos system). The screen can display song titles, album art, customized wallpapers—even RSS feeds and radio station IDs.
On February 5, This Week in Consumer Electronics announced that Polk Audio had announced plans to sell its I-Sonic ES2 iPod docking tabletop hi-fi ($499) and miDock Studio portable iPod speaker through the Apple website and freestanding store network. This came less than a week after Polk announced that Best Buy would carry its TSi loudspeakers, PSW powered subwoofers, select RM series drive-units and, of course, the SurroundBar 360 DVD Theater (all of which are currently available from the rival Circuit City chain).
You thought the only new articles about CDs you'd be reading would be about further declines in sales? Well, it turns out that ArkivMusic, the country's leading website for new and formerly out-of-print classical recordings, posted, um, record sales last year.
Longtime Stereophile reader (and EFF senior staff attorney) Fred von Lohmann sent us a message pointing us to rumors that iPod Classics running v1.1 firmware were outputting DC through both their dock connection and headphone jack. He included a link to iLounge.com, which bills itself as "an independent provider of information about Apple Computer Inc.'s iPod and iPhone digital media players, accessories, and related software."
When last we heard business news from NHT, it had been acquired by Vinci Labs in 2006. Today, NHT managing director Chris Byrne told Stereophile, "We are sitting down right now and signing the papers to purchase NHT, Inc. from Vinci Labs, creating NHT Audio, LLC."
Audio Research, one of the companies that created the Silver Age of American high-end audio 38 years ago, was acquired by Italian private equity firm Quadrivio SGR on January 25. Quadrivio, which acquired Sonus Faber in 2007, intends to keep Audio Research's current management team in place.
The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) announced that it will launch "a new consumer technology event," Digital Downtown (D2), 'to showcase the latest electronic lifestyle and workstyle products to residents and employees of Mahattan's Financial District." D2, which will be held from June 12–14 at the Winter Garden of the World Financial Center, will be open to the public, unlike the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES).
Physical sales of music plummeted at a rate that exceeded the sales growth of legal downloads in 2007, according to the IFPI. While global digital sales grew by 40% in 2007—representing about 10% of all music sold—IFPI figures suggest that CD sales in the US dropped by 19% (10.5% in the UK).
The shoes are now dropping all over the place. We have previously reported that Warner Music Group had dropped DRM on its downloads, joining Amazon.com's Download store. Ten days ago, we also reported that Sony BMG had announced it was dropping DRM, although it declined to release any distribution details at the time.