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(Assorted Stuff)

  Besides all the normal products, there was some assorted goodies to be found. Some of it was not even in full production yet! Hell, some of it was prototype gear and not even a sure thing. Below are those products and much, much more.

For those not too familiar, DTS is basically a new digital surround sound format (kinda like DVD). It seems the new digital surround sound formats in general may be just what we mobile audio folks need. Imagine a system specifically designed for front right and left, center, rear right and left, and a subwoofer channel. With the music specifically engineered for these 5.1 channels (the .1 is the subwoofer only channel), we may be able to get even better sound in our vehicles! Surround sound is nothing new, but with five pure digital, full frequency channels and a separate subwoofer channel we may be in for some killer tunedge. Sherwood was showing their prototype DTS vehicle and i've heard the KEF is right on their tail with the new DTS format for mobile music reproduction systems. According to Sherwood's marketing manager Gerald Smith, expect their DTS decoder to be available around January of 1998. Stay tuned!


Eclipse E400AV2 (front cover closed)

Eclipse E400AV2 (front cover opened)

Only two of these have made it into the USA, but they are available in Japan. This is the new Eclipse E400AV2 which uses a double din sized chassis. A 50 LCD display, as seen above, clearly shows various operations while using the unit (seen here with the track and time displayed). This unit doesn't just play CDs, it also is a full TV, navigation, cassette deck with Dolby B noise reduction, and has a VHS input for external video sources. It also has a digital output via RCA coax for outboard processor(s). In the future, according to the Eclipse representative, a unit will be available with dual analog RCA outputs. A wireless remote control is also included with this unit. No USA pricing or distribution yet, but i predict it'll be available in a few months.


The Mobile Electronics Certification Program (MECP) was there in full force. My feelings are that if you're serious about installing then you better be MECP certified. We need to spread the word to people and let them know that like professional electricians, mobile audio installers also have a type of professional certification program too. What was news to me is that you can choose to take various tests at your local library. Once you're certified you also get great newsletters too and updates! MECP can be contacted at (703) 907-7689 or via e-mail by clicking here.


The International Audio Sound Challenge Association (IASCA) was also at the show. The new rule book is out my friends and the judges certification/re-certification dates are already underway. If you are a judge or want to become a judge you better find out where and when these seminars are. You can call IASCA at (602) 437-4678 or via e-mail by clicking here. To see IASCA's www site click here.


Some of the real news to me during the show was a startup new mobile sound competition called National Car Audio League (NCAL). How they differ from USAC and IASCA is that first off it's a team sport. You can enter as a team and are group scored accordingly. Also, there are different 'classes' of the judging. Unlike IASCA's 'wattage class' NCAL uses 'money class'. The scores are broken down into four rounds, members vote for the MVP in each money class, and there are team and individual 'Bowls'. According to their literature i have here, there is also other competitions like fastest amplifier install, fastest deck install, fastest alarm install, fastest window tinter, and of course the bikini contests. To find out more about this new competition call (806) 798-0500 or visit their www site by clicking here.













































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