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CES Sneak Peeks

CES isn’t necessarily the best place to find custom installation-centric products, but it can offer a glimpse at the latest mass-market buzz-worthy toys and provide merchandising ideas you may have never considered before.

CES isn’t necessarily the best place to find custom installation-centric products, but it can offer a glimpse at the latest mass-market buzz-worthy toys and provide merchandising ideas you may have never considered before. Here’s a brief, early look at a handful of products that will appear next month in Las Vegas. A more complete list will follow next month.

SIM2’s MICO 150

HiFiMAN, a designer/manufacturer of head– phones and portable audio products, will be showing its HE-300 high-performance dynamic headphone that can be used with a conventional amplifier or portable audio device. Available for an MSRP of $249, the HE-300 features lighter weight than typical full-size headphones along with special, over-the-ear earpads and a flexible cable, and its high sensitivity (-93 dB) allows it to be used with everyday devices such as an iPod or iPhone.

Niles compact subwoofer

Russound is introducing its AirGo Outdoor Sound Station, the first portable, weather-resistant, amplified speaker dock for use with Apple AirPort Express. Users only need to configure the AirPort express and install it into the AirGo Outdoor’s protective pocket before plugging it into an outlet and enjoying music. The internal stereo speaker and specially designed power amplifier are designed to deliver a wide, detailed soundstage, and AirGo can also serve as a portable Wi-Fi hotspot, thanks to the Apple AirPort Express and its ability to serve as a Wi-Fi repeater.

HiFiMAN headphones

Monitor Audio’s SoundFrame 3 is a compact twoway satellite speaker primarily intended as a rear speaker to complement the current SoundFrame series. Alternatively it can be used on its own or augmented by a subwoofer to provide multi-zone install music or home theater installation either on-wall or in-wall. A pivoting tweeter arrangement allows the high frequencies to be directed into the listening area while reducing unwanted reflections from adjacent boundaries. SoundFrame 3 cabinets are available in matte, white, or black. They fit flush with the wall by virtue of a front connection system that allows the cable from the wall aperture to enter the back of the cabinet and pass through the speaker to the stylish front-mounted connectors.

Monitor Audio’s SoundFrame 3

On the heels of a year in which it launched an ambitious 15 new products, SIM2 is headed to the South Hall at CES with more product introductions and dealer programs in hand. Among the highlights will be a demonstration of the company’s first active 3D LED single-lens projector, the MICO 150, which is now shipping. For the MICO 150, SIM2 has developed Super PureLED technology, which uses more powerful LED modules to produce 1,100 lumen light output and a contrast ratio of 100,000:1. The video processing electronics are based on those used in SIM2’s high-end LUMIS 3D SOLO 3-chip projector.

Russound AirGo Outdoor Sound Station,

Niles is introducing two new compact subwoofers, the SW6.5 and the SW8, in its suite at the Las Vegas Hilton Hotel. Each sub pairs a long-throw frontfiring woofer with dual long-throw side-mounted passive radiators, to deliver the power of subwoofers four times their size. Both feature 12-volt triggers or audio signal sensing and include a built-in Cat- 5 balun to enable audio delivery over Cat-5 cable. Additionally, both models come with a built-in bracket-mount compatible with the OmniMount 30.0 ST-MP to allow easy wall or ceiling mounting, making it appropriate for bars, restaurants, and other light-commercial installations. Installers can further increase the subwoofers’ placement flexibility by going wireless with the optional Niles SW-T wireless transceiver and SW-R receiver that easily attaches to a built-in mounting port on the rear of the subwoofers.

Monster’s NTune On-Ear Headphones

Monster and Nick Cannon are introducing the first “NCredible” lifestyle consumer electronics products developed through their previously announced alliance. First up in the line is NTune On-Ear Headphones (SRP: $149.95) and Nergy In-Ear Headphones (SRP: $69.95) available in January. The lightweight, on-ear design of NTunes makes them easy to wear all day long. They also feature tangle-free cables for ease of use, and their low profile right angle connector adds comfort and flexibility. The headphones also feature Monster’s advanced ControlTalk Universal, which provides easy music playback control for most Android and Blackberry devices, as well as hands-free calling with many smartphones.