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Russound to Feature Collage, New Amp at EHX

Orlando, FL — Russound will soon ship a new IP-based system that utilizes the Home Plug Alliance’s Power Line Carrier technology. Christened Collage (pictured), the new system is designed to give end-users complete multiroom access to digital audio entertainment, legacy sources, intercom system and color security cameras by way of a home’s standard AC wiring. By negating the need for a centralized controller, amplified keypads and system sources can be placed anywhere in a home where AC power has been run.

“Russound is bullish on PLC,” said Michael Stein, Russound’s senior director of research and technology. “It’s the smartest, most efficient option for moving entertainment over a home’s AC wiring, which is why we were quick to take advantage of its capabilities when we first announced the Avenue and iBridge Power Dock products over the past year.

“Collage takes the promise of PLC to an entirely new level by ‘freeing’ the technology to operate without having to first install an RNET system, and leveraging IP delivery of digital assets as well as analog content without having to rely on any add-on pieces of hardware. From entertainment to intercom functions, Collage is the easiest, most reliable retrofit solution that will be available to our dealers and end-users.”

The Collage amplified keypad is connected to a standard Romex wire run that supplies both power and a communications pathway to a Media Manager that bridges the PLC signals to a local area network (LAN). In turn, sources such as IR devices–including DVRs, CD players, iPod docks, CCTV cameras, and even online music services, such as Rhapsody and SHOUTcast–are now part of the network, and can be accessed from any of the installed keypads.

“People love how Rhapsody delivers a near-limitless selection of music. Now listeners can enjoy Rhapsody anytime, in almost any room of the house,” said Anu Kirk, Rhapsody’s general manager of product management. “Russound’s Collage brings Rhapsody to the retrofit market in a way that is simple to install and easy to use.”

Russound has also unveiled a new multizone controller amplifier. The MCA-C5 delivers a new format with eight stereo inputs. It is joined by the new MDK-C5 Multiline Display Keypad.

“Russound is always attentive to what our dealers are asking for,” said Roger Soucy, product manager for Russound. “We listened to their input and designed these new products as our response, offering more features and zones in the new MCA-C5, and an intuitive new keypad in the MDK-C5. We’re confident our dealers and their customers will be excited by the value of both these new C-Series products.”

The new MCA-C5 is the latest addition to Russound’s family of controller amplifiers. Sporting an enhanced industrial design in a compact, 2U rack mountable enclosure, the MCA-C5 offers eight stereo inputs for external sources, and can route audio to eight different zones, with six digitally amplified zones, delivering 40 watts per channel. Every zone features both variable and fixed outputs, giving installers the flexibility to support external amplification or subzones through Russound’s ABUS amplified keypads. The MCA-C5 features a convenient front panel USB port for easy programming, and a rear-panel RS-232 port for simple third party integration.

In addition to its superior integration options, the new MCA-C5 includes a built-in AM-FM tuner with RDS compatibility. Similar to previous controllers featuring Russound’s RNET technology, metadata from the internal tuner and other Russound Smart sources is displayed on system keypads and touchscreens, providing users with a complete audio system interface in any room in the house.

To accompany and control the MCA-C5, Russound will soon ship the stylish, new MDK-C5 Multiline Display Keypad–a simple and intuitive control interface that features multiline LCD screen display for clear, unabridged user feedback in any room. It offers new features, such as a system clock, zone alarms, a sleep timer and paging. The MDK-C5 fits in a standard two-gang work box, and connects to the MCA-C5 through a single Cat-5 cable. The new keypad also includes an IR
receiver, which allows alternative zone and source device control from IR-based output devices. A plasma-friendly version and color conversion kits for the MDK-C5 are available, allowing seamless integration with any room or décor. For additional control, the SRC-C5 System Remote Control provides IR control with learning capabilities, and a Russound UNO-TS2 Smart Touchscreen can be added to the system as well.

Russound’s MCA-C5 Multizone Controller Amplifier and MDK-C5 Multiline Display Keypad will become available later this month at MAP of $3050.00 and $349.99 respectively.