Home Theater and High Fidelity Stereo Audio

Ed's AV Blog
plus Audio/Video News

Batting practice for the audio/video pro and a primer for the novice

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  Handbook Chapters
  Chap 1    AV Terminology
  Chap 2    AV Physics
  Chap 3    Sound
  Chap 4    Video
  Chap 5    AV System Sequence
  Chap 6    The Room, Speaker, & TV
  Chap 7    Acoustical Strategy
  Chap 8    Home Theater by Design
  Chap 9    Sales Training
  Chap 10  Business & Marketing

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Link to Ed's latest blog Stereo by Default

Blog archive links at the bottom of this page.

And the AV NEWS you should know follows .....

5G Cellular Network Status
3G gave us cell phone service.  4G LTE connected our cell phones to broadband services.
The 5G network will add popular media, currently distributed by cable and satellite providers, to the cellular tower mix.  This story TheVerge outlines the current status of the 5G roll out.

IMAX DTS Certification
Then once ubiquitous THX symbol seem to have disappeared from home theater shelves.  
Will the new IMAX DTS certification and licensing program become their successor?
Select this Link to FierceVideo for the story.

Rare Elements Found
Huge supply of rare elements found in the mud off Japanese island.  This find may impact the supply, access, and the price of materials needed for electronic manufacturing.  Check out this story from the Consumer Technology Association

UHD from Point A to Point B?

UltraHD HDR 4K/60fps 4:4:4 12bit 18Gbps bandwidth video has arrived.  Delivering it from the source to the display is the issue.  This issue is currently limited to the highest performance video systems.  However as HDR TV prices continue to drop 18Gbps video will become more mainstream. Therefore many of you will be confronted with the possibility of a compromised picture or worse a blank screen.  Here are two CE Pro story links from David Meyer and Jeff Boccaccio that can put you on the path to UltraHD glory: 
David Meyer and Jeff Boccaccio

Cool Vinyl Story
Louisville record store adds another 280,000 LPs and 45s purchased from a Texas dealer.

What Every Blank Audio Cassette Needs
In a follow up to the news regarding audio cassettes making a come back;
here's a story about a NEW Tascam (Teac) cassette deck from ITNews.com.

Audio Cassettes Back in Business, What!?
I'm not sure what to make of this story.  Apparently the old analog cassette tape is riding on the coattails of the vinyl renaissance.  I do miss the old analog stuff.  It was fun.  
Check out this story at Installation/AVTechnologyEurope.com

What is AV1?
MPEG's H.265 High Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC) has another challenger and its free for video programmers to implement.  Check out this story at TVTechnology.com.   

Blue LED Light Creates Insomnia?
Tech's favorite color is making us miserable. Check out this story at FastCompany.com.

CTA Announces VR AR Standards
The Consumer Technology Association announced standard definitions for Augmented and Virtual Reality technologies.  The standards offer a communication blueprint for manufacturers, retailers, and consumers.  Technical specification standards will follow.  
This is a key step for these emerging products.  Select this link to TVTecnology.com for the details.

Samsung Moving Away From LCD Technology
This report outlines how Samsung is implementing a revised mix of quantum dots and OLED's.
A base of blue OLEDs energize red and green quantum dot pixels.  Blue pixels are produced by the 'base' blue OLEDs.  This technology improves on LG's current color filtered white OLED 'stacks'.  Select mysmartprice.com for the story. 

8K? 16K?  32K?
Here's a story to make your UltraHDTV (4K) day.  Insight Media's founder Chris Chinnock reported "not only was 8K right on track but that its adoption is essentially inevitable, and they are now thinking about 16K and even 32K."  
Select this link to Advanced Television.com for the story.

HDMI over a long distance can drive installers crazy.  Here is some advice and facts about active HDMI cable runs from Jeff Boccaccio
.  Select this link at CEPro.com for the story.

Raise Your Samsung Hype Antenna
Samsung has announced their fall launch of 8K UltraHD TV's featuring next generation HDR with 120Hz frame rate, and 12 bit color depth.  However they are already back tracking on their claims. The key point is be careful.  Current UltraHD CIE REC 2020 specs have yet to be met.
Select this Forbes.com link for the story.

Free UltraHD Programing
It's coming ..... Well, not yet .... But it's coming.  Free over the air High Dynamic Range at 120 frames per second UtlraHD television is projected to arrive by 2020.  
Check out the story at C/Net.com

HDR Format War Update
High Dynamic Range is the path to stunning UltraHD video performance.  HDR format choices currently include HDR10, HDR10+, Dolby Vision, HGL, and Technicolor's SL-HDR1, 2, & 3.
However HDR formats must be paired with compatible sources and hardware to deliver on the HDR promise; this includes the TV, BluRay player, streaming service, and don't forget broadcasters.  This story from c/net.com outlines the battle for your TV screen. 

Vinyl Sales Hit 25-Year High
A RollingStone.com. story proclaims "The End of Owning Music: How CD's and Downloads Died". Yet the story ultimately reveals the resurgent success of vinyl; a 25-year high is not a fad.

MQA - It's About Time
The human ear is more sensitive to phase (timing) than frequency.  This is the weakest link of the Sony/Phillips CD and other digital formats.  Bob Stuart's Meridian CD players have included phase band-aids since the 1990's.  And now phase accuracy is a foundation of Mr. Stuart's MQA format which is implemented in the recording studio.  This is a big deal.  Select this Link.
AudiophileRevicw.com for the story.

How many Shure M91EDs did you mount?
This question is aimed at the gray hairs in my audience.  Shure will no longer manufacturer phono cartridges.  Time moves on.  Select this LINK to What HiFi for the story.

Baseball Has Answers
" The talent of a team determines what it can do. Expectations determine what it will do."
This story at SmartBrief.com. describes how Bruce Bochy, manager of the San Francisco Giants, influences people not data.  Select this Link to the story.
You can find answers to most problems in baseball.

Is Your Audio System Set Up Wrong?
As in life, audio facts are often less than convenient.  This is a to a story by Steven Stone at Audiophile Review.com about where to place up your gear.  Hint, avoid resonant peaks.

Plastic Fiber Optic Cable
It's tougher ... pull it or bend it .... and it's available with detachable HDMI or Display Port termination in lengths from 1 to 100 meters.  Check out this story at CEPro.

MPEG vs The Streaming World
The Motion Picture Experts Group - MPEG - has been the steward of home video compression
for decades.  MPEG allows you to view most of your home video sources.  However MPEG dominance may be in jeopardy.  The 'streaming world of video' is moving toward alternative compression standards.  This story outlines the behind the scene battle that AV Pros should be aware of.  Select this LINK to ibc.org for the story. 

On the Lookout for HDMI 2.1

HDMI 2.1 48Gbps bandwidth has many AV Pros nervous --- and for good reasons.  Fortunately
Jeff Boccaccio is a 'go to' source for accurate HDMI news.  Select this CEPro LINK.  
Mr. Boccaccio lays out key issues and a probable time line for the HDMI 2.1 roll out.  

LG's New UHD 2018 TVs
My blog 'UltraHD Risky Crossroad' (July 2015) offered a list of 
UltraHD TV needs and wants.  
At the time no TV fulfilled the list.  
I followed with a 7 part update in 2017.  It highlighted the lack of support for all major HDR formats. The new 2018 LG OLED UHD TVs may change this. The new LG's also include 120fps frame rate; but only via the USB path.  Select this avsForum.com link for more information.

New Speaker Technology?
Since the first decades of the 20th century
, there has not been a truly new speaker technology. Although this statment contradicts the claims by manufacturers and those who repeat their hype -- it's true.  However that may change. Check out this story at New Atlas.com.  A new technology uses thermo acoustics via the use of graphene as opposed to a moving mechanical diaphragm.  Wait --- I forgot about plasmatronics.  Well at least this eliminates the helium tanks. 

ATSC 3.0 Audio
Video capability, naturally, has been the focus of the new ATSC 3.0 over the air broadcast standard. But how about the audio?  This story at HomeTheaterReview.com outlines the prospect of its multi-channel audio future.  Will it be Dolby AC4 or MPEG-H?  Select this LINK for the story.

Spiky Glass Cones
This is a cool story from NewAtlas.com.  Etching nanoscale cones into glass of eye glasses, smart phones, and solar panels reduces glare and produces more power.  
Select this LINK to the story.

It's Official - HDMI 2.1
HDMI 2.1 with 48 Gbps bandwidth has officially been released.  This will affect your installations. Your 'old' installations will not support this.  Select this LINK to the AVSForum

DTS Virtual: X
DTS Virtual:X claims it can deliver surround sound, even the above effects, with two speakers. However the real news in this CEPro story is fewer than 30% of consumers with Dolby Atmos and DTS-X receivers have connected any height speakers.  Even more surprising fewer than 48% have connected any rear speakers.  If true, should consumers re-allocate their dollars into purchasing higher power stereo receivers with two larger speakers.  Big speakers and more power is more fun than a bunch of small in-ceiling speakers.  

FCC Authorizes ATSC 3.0
ATSC 3.0, the new over-the-air broadcast television standard, has been adopted by the FCC.  
ATSC 3.0 will deliver UltraHD High Dynamic Range video via roof-top TV antennas. However, it is not backward compatible with current digital tuners.  Check out this story at TVTechnology.com and get prepared to answer consumer questions.

Brick-n-Mortar Retail Rules
Online sales and the demise of large retailers may dominate the headlines.  But in truth physical brick-n-mortar still dominates retail sales.  I found this Residential Systems story via Media Delivery Strategies' head honcho Glen O'Brien at LinkedIn.  

Flying Burritos
Can this be heaven?  Just add a Dos Equis XX, and cue up Chris Hillman, Graham Parsons and company.  Select this Link now.

Protect Your Business from Fraud
My daughter's employer's payroll account was recently hacked.  Fraud is not a new subject.  
It has always haunted our hallways and byways.  This Forbes.com story offers some guidelines to protect your business.

It's The Demo Dummy
Customers will buy exciting customized musical and cinema experiences.  
So stop talking tech and just start the movie -- play the music.  This CEPro interview retells an old story.  

FREE - 25,000 78 RPM Records
This LINK to newsworks.com reports on an interesting source to a musical 'way-back-machine'.
Check out the musical gems that lie in this free site: George Blood/The Great 78 Project

Dynamic Glass
"Light, Aziz light" .... Light is the prime element of home theater video.  Short of eliminating windows --- window covering is still a primary method of controlling competing sources of light. Dynamic glass is a cool alternative.  This LINK to ElectronicHouse.com tells the story.  

Computer Audio for Beginners
Michael Lavorgna at AudioStream.com offers help for the computer audio novice with this series of articles:
Computer audio 101, Download sites, Files & formats, Files sizes & storage, Fixing your metadata, NAS. Select this LINK.

Independents thrive as big boxes dive
Independent dealers are fairing well across the land.
Select this LINK to Twice.com tells the story.

UltraHD Mess
60Hz 18Gbps HDR UltraHD video sources with expanded deep color are arriving.
But many so-called UltraHD '4K' products (that consumers have handsomely paid for) will not reproduce it. And here's another wrinkle.  DPL Labs discovered that any component in the system, even an UHD HDR disc, may reduce 18Gbps video to 8.91Gbps.  Select this LINK to this DLP Labs Jeff Boccaccio story at CEPro.  And get ready for some angry phone calls.  

LCD resolution tripled?
Check out this phrase, "surface morphology-induced polorization-dependent plasmonic resonance".  Essentially this new technique replaces LCD RGB color filtered sub-pixels with stand alone RGB LCD pixels. Read this story at digital trends.com for the details.

Real 2020 Red
The C.I.E. 2020 color specification is the holy grail of video color.  This outlines a General Electric LED technology that produces C.I.E. 2020 red.  This may open the door to C.I.E. 2020 red, green, and blue displays. This story at AVSforum also offers a great description of the light emitting diode.

Do not confuse this QLED with Samsung's faux QLED.  This is a different "Q" than the "Q" of quantum dot film. This "Q" is an "Electroluminescent Inorganic LED" display.  It's only a prototype. But this technology is advancing at a fast pace.  Check out the full story at this link to AVSforum.  

Ferroelectret Nanogenerator or FENG is an ultra thin transducer that may morph into a talking newspaper, a roll up radio, a foldable speaker, a noise canceling 'sheet', or who knows.  Check out the story at the dailymail.co.uk.

More Support for MQA
Is MQA to audio as HDR is to video?  I hope so.  This is another hometheater.com story outlining the growing support for MQA. 

MQA News
The list of MQA partners is growing.  This story from hometheater.com updates the list.

HDMI 2.1 News  This Robert Archer story at CEPro offers a link to an informative webinar and post seminar quotes regarding your HDMI 48G cable future.  The gist of the story is don't panic ..... Yet.

Mono or Stereo This is a link to a RareRecords.net Blog by Charlie Essmeier.  Charlie reviews and offers classic recordings released in mono and stereo.  This is a must read for the record collector.  

The Loudspeaker Design Cookbook
Much as the author of this story (Brent Butterworth), it has been three decades since I first read Vance Dickanson's "The Loudspeaker Design Cookbook".  If you're looking for a reference that sums up speaker design choices; then pick up a copy or at least read Mr. Butterworth's outline of the 'Cookbook' at this link to hometheater review.com.

The UltraHD 4K Mine Field
Many consumers who bought UltraHD are going to be disappointed.  As true 4K 18GBps content arrives we find that we lack the wiring/switching infrastructure to support it.  Who's going to tell consumers the truth?  Check out this LINK at CE Pro.  Jeff Boccaccio outlines this 4K UltraHD mine field.

Musical Origami  
This is a must read by Robert Harley of TheAbsoluteSound about MQA " ..... a revolution that comes once in a lifetime".  This is a digital audio revolution.  He stated that, “By comparison ... conventional PCM is a crude and inefficient method of encoding audio.”  
Select this LINK Now!

Digital & Noise
This is a link to an AudioStream.com report by Michael Lavorgna.  It is not an easy read for the novice.  But it is important to anyone interested in better sound.  It deals with EMI and RF noise 'produced' or 'reproduced' by digital cables and digital devices.  Mr. Lavorgna stated, "The simple takeaway I'd like to highlight is the fact that digital cables are not immune to noise and this noise can directly impact the quality of an analog signal in an attached analog device."  Remove or reduce the noise and your system will sound better.

Human Hearing Beats Uncertainty Limit
This story at ars/technica.com demonstrates that human hearing exceeds what the most advanced technologies can measure.  This is yet more evidence that we do hear what we hear; though many still insist that we don't. 


 Ed's AV Blog Archive

 Links to previous blogs

Location, location, location
How to find a retail brick-n-mortar home. This outlines a 9 step process that defines trade area boundaries, locates its trading areas, describes its demographics, and selects a brick-n-mortar home.

Fidelity without truth?
I expect to be lied to by sleazy laywers and politicians,
but I draw the line at my high fidelity audio/video world.

UltraHD HDR Primer
- all 7 Parts
  Part 1 Set the Table
  Part 2 Buzzword Noise Reduction
  Part 3 HDR Format War
  Part 4 The HD Multimedia Interface
  Part 5 More HDMI Tips
  Part 6 UltraHD Sources
  Part 7 System Compatibility

Cloak the Tech  
Don't be the guy who descends into buzzword laden monologues that cause customers to walk.

Ultra-HD Risky Crossroad  
HDTV to Ultra-HD TV is at a risky unsettled crossroad. Should you cross now or later?

$20 AV Hero  
Is a twenty dollar sale worth your time?

Ed's Class D Economic Forecast
These are baseline economic facts for 2015 planning.

Adventures in AV Land Part 2  'Wipe out the noise'
Ed enlists the words of Peter Gabriel to examine an issue that plagues our business. 

Adventures in AV Land Part 1
This is a trip down sales-rep memory lane that reflects on the definition and understanding of stereo audio. It concludes with a request. 

I Am A Salesman
I am offended by those who have stained the reputations of  professional sales folks. 

Not Invented Here
A good friend confronted me with a good question.
Here is my answer.

The Bully
Contemporary stories about bullies continue to miss the mark.
This blog offers a time honored solution. 

Panasonic Responds?
Did Pansonic really respond to Ed's previous blog.
And what was Ed's reaction.

This blog offers a path to restore AV profitability.  

Hedy Lamarr, Lefty Gomez, and David Bromberg
What do these legends have in common?

Ray Davies
Artist such as Ray Davies are largely why I entered this business.
This is a story about another great evening of music.

Where Have All My AV Friends Gone?
Another great AV shop closed their doors forever.
What happened?

4K BluRay What?
If you're a Sony fan, you may want to skip this rant. 

This is an introduction to two great technologies; OLED and IOLED. 

If Dirty Harry were an AV Pro.
An audio/video professional must know his limitations.

Breakfast with Kevin
What do my friend Kevin, Henry Rollins, and Joseph Campbell have in common?

Why It Matters
Did you hear that?  
It's the sound of groans responding to my previous blog.

Mis-mixed Audio Concepts 
" ...... these guys claim we can't hear what we hear ...
....... because (we) are not as accurate as some stupid test equipment".   

The 2011 Optimist 
I set out to dig a well for water, but ended up with a half empty septic tank.

Pet Peeve
Advertising is not Marketing.

Bad Chili 
David jokingly referred to audiophiles as audio.... piles. 

How to Compete with the big-box.
I saw a smart-phone-customer-type engage stun as the salesman approached. 

Eavesdropping at the big box.
Did you know transporting a plasma TV on its back disrupts the gas in its cells?
Yeah, it was news to me too.

Baseball and Selling Audio / 3 Part Blog
Part 1 - 'Clear the Mechanisms'
Part 2 - 'Get you signs'.
Part 3 - 'The windup and the pitch.' 

Home Theater by Design / 3 Part Blog
Part 1 - The Custom Design
Part 2 - THX
Part 3 - High Fidelity

In Four Parts / The Holy Trinity of HiFi Audio
Part 1 - Noise
Part 2 - Noise continued.
Part 3 - Frequency Response
Part 4 - Phase

Send the Kink Packing

Is that Big Box PO Just Another Bailout?

In Defense of Snake Oil

Is Your Business Strategy Your Foe?

What's Wrong with Audio?

My First Day of Class

Audio Revival

Minimize the Compromise

A Genuine Audiophile

Ed's AV Handbook.com
Batting Practice for the AV Pro and a Primer for the Novice.
Copyright 2007 Txu1-598-288   Revised 2018