DDG to Distribute NevoSL
October 31, 2006

Digital Delivery Group (DDG) announced a deal Monday to distribute the NevoSL universal controller from Universal Electronics Inc. The controller is designed to simplify both programming and post-installation service and support. The NevoStudio 2.0 software suite was recently released to compliment the controller, which has won the Residential System’s RESI Award for Best Handheld Controller, the Electronic House Product of the Year and CEDIA Australia’s Best in Show. Said David Kaplan, executive director at DDG, “We are truly thrilled to add this product lineup because it exemplifies the type of product solution Digital Delivery Group was formed to bring to the

CEDIA Launches Educational Initiative
October 31, 2006

As a part of its 2007 Electronic Lifestyles EXPO, which will take place next April in Las Vegas, CEDIA will incorporate three educational outreach components to inform its members about the industry. Inspired by feedback from attendees of CEDIA’s first Electronic Lifestyles Forum who requested more hands-on experience and training, this year’s forum will take architects, builders and designers onto the showroom floor to get that experience. Industry professionals will act as CEDIA Ambassadors, who will guide attendees through this training. A second aspect to the initiative, CU on the Road, takes CEDIA University core curriculum courses, seminars, certification reviews/exams and

DSI Releases Custom Installation Catalog
October 17, 2006

DSI Systems, Inc. announced Monday the release of its Custom Installation Catalog. Products from BES, Ariza, Test-um, Monster Cable and JobSite are featured in the catalog, which highlights tools, cables and supplies specific to the custom installer segment. The catalog also includes plasma, LCD and DLP televisions from Pioneer, Pioneer Elite and Toshiba. To request a catalog, call 1-800-888-8876.

Contacts: Andrew Wiatrak, Owner, Sensation Design Group, Minneapolis, Minn.
October 5, 2006

Andrew Wiatrak, a custom retailer who specializes in high-end home and boat automation projects, has come to believe over the years that advertising is a waste of his resources. “We are reasonably small,” says Wiatrak of his business, Sensation Design Group, which has been called the best Crestron dealer in the mid-West by Crestron Sales Manager Craig Gulley, “but we turn some big numbers because we’ve learned how to handle clients. Word of mouth has done it for us.” Wiatrak has a singular approach to handling his clientele. Aside from the typical wining, dining and project proposal etiquette, he’s learned to create low-key fun

From Custom Retailer: CEDIA EXPO 2006 Attendance -- “More than 28,000”
October 2, 2006

CEDIA confirmed record attendance numbers for CEDIA EXPO 2006. It says more than 28,000 people attended, roughly an eight percent increase over EXPO 2005, making EXPO 2006, in CEDIA’s words, “the largest and most successful trade show in the organization’s 17-year history.” The show also set a record for its number of exhibitors, said CEDIA, with “more than 600” on hand--”about 100 more exhibitors than EXPO 2005.” CEDIA also reported that participation in CEDIA University courses was “at its highest level,” attributing the interest to new core curriculums for the Electronic Systems Technician (EST) and Electronic Systems Designer (ESD) colleges, “as well as increased

Changing the Definition
October 1, 2006

It’s happened to many an independent retailer who’s just dropped a couple grand updating the show floor to display the latest 1080p flatpanels: the LCDs are on the wall, HDMI cables are plugged in, and the sets are all set to illicit customer goosebumps with whatever high-definition content the local cable company is offering. Only one problem: the cable programming happens to include paid advertisements from a big box competitor, not exactly the inspirational content storeowners were looking to show off. In a year when high definition content offerings haven’t quite caught up with manufacturers’ exuburance to push microdisplays, independent retailers, especially those doing

Contacts: Retailers Selling CE with a Twist of Innovation
September 28, 2006

Robert Walters, Blueroof Solutions, McKeesport, PA Allegheny County, a part of Western Pennsylavnia once known for it’s booming steel mills, has the second largest population of senior citizens in the nation, second only to Dade County, Florida. Though not typically investing in high-end home entertainment systems, this population is increasingly interested in a new group of tech products that could help older adults live independently longer, an option much less expensive than the rent at assisted living facilities. Bob Walters, an electrical engineering professor turned entrepreneur, is hoping to cater to that market through a new business called Blueroof Solutions. “I’m a professor at Penn

An Installer Internship That Sounds Good
September 22, 2006

Sounds Good Audio, Security and Marine recently announced its 2006-2007 Installer Internship program. Students who have completed electronics courses are encouraged to participate. The 90 day program consists of lectures from industry figures such as Sounds Good President Isaac Goren on getting a job in the 12-Volt industry, the future of the industry, custom and regular installs, tools of the trade and what to expect from a position with a car audio retailer. A tour of the Sounds Good shop and installation bay in Woodland Hills is also included.

Two New Digital Entertainment Centers from HP
September 20, 2006

HP has launched two new digital entertainment centers which serve as high-definition digital video recorders, progressive scan DVD players and management systems for digital music and photo collections. The HP z565 and HP z560 feature HDMI connectivity, fixed-line audio out and a 9-in-1 card reader. They can store up to 800GB of content and run dual-core Intel processors which are Intel Viiv-compliant. These are also the first digital entertainment centers to come Life|ware ready. At the same time, HP has launched a custom integrator support initiative, consisting of a dedicated call center for help with installation of HP digital

CEDIA Hands Out Lifestyle Awards
September 20, 2006

The CEDIA Electronic Lifestyles Awards winners have been announced. Outstanding volunteers, five “best new products” and 33 CEDIA members have been singled out for laurels. Various price categories run the gamut from $40,000 installations to $800,000 residential electronic systems. Photos and descriptions of entries are available in the 2006 Electronic Lifestyles Awards Competition book, which can be purchased at Awards winners are listed at