Meridian Digital Theater Takes Home Six Awards from 2005 EH Expo

Meridian Audio’s booth at the 2005 Electronic House Expo in Anaheim, California this past weekend, showcased the ultimate in luxury home entertainment: a Meridian Digital Theater. Show attendees who voted for the Best of Demo Alley (BODA) awards agreed – this demonstration took home all six BODA awards including: Best Audio Demo Experience, Best Video Demo Experience, Most Informative Audio Demonstration, Most Informative Video Demonstration, Most Entertaining Presentation, and Best Overall Demonstration.

The voice of EHX attendees was clearly heard as they overwhelmingly chose the Meridian and Transparent demonstrations as the Best of Demo Alley,” says CE Pro senior editor Bob Archer. “This shows that these companies are living up to their performance reputations by delivering convincing product demonstrations to dealers and consumers.

The system shown at the EH Expo included Meridian’s popular digital loudspeakers featuring their unique DSP (Digital Signal Processing) system and Transparent Cable as its wire partner. The system configuration included the DSP7000s at the front, DSP5200s for side channels, and DSP5500s in the rear. A digital signal was fed to each loudspeaker – in this case from a G68 Digital Surround Processor. Inside each speaker cabinet is a powerful crossover implemented entirely in the digital domain, permitting parameters and performance that are simply impossible with conventional passive designs. The crossover outputs are fed to individual precision digital to analog converters per band, and these each drive their own power amplifier, which is coupled directly to the drivers. The result is an elegant self-contained unit that sounds as good as it looks. In addition, the demo system featured a SW5500 analog/digital subwoofer, optimized for both music and movie soundtracks, making it an ideal companion to the system.

The loudspeakers were driven by a G68 surround processor, which decodes surround audio signals in the vast majority of current formats including Dolby Digital and DTS. It, in turn, was fed by a G98 DVD-Audio/Video player, which can play back almost any PCM-format disc including CD, DVD-Audio, DVD-Video and the DVD side of a DualDisc.

The digital video signal from the G98 was fed via its HDMI output to a Faroudja DVP1080 Digital Video Processor. This accepts a wide range of analog and digital video formats and delivers full-bandwidth High Definition processing, optimizing current advanced 1920x1080p digital displays by converting 1080i interlaced HD video and other formats to a clean, 1080p progressive output.

Full High Definition cross-conversion and Standard Definition processing are included, with patented technology for de-interlacing, motion tracking, color fidelity and image detail enhancement, making the DVP1080 an essential central video component of any high-performance theater. All types of displays benefit from this processing, including plasma, DLP, LCD, DILA and CRT-based devices. US retail price is $6,995.

The DVP1080 drove a Faroudja DILA1080pHD Digital Projector, which utilizes three 1920x1080p DILA-based display chips. With a native resolution equal to full bandwidth High Definition, all the beauty and drama of the original source are reproduced with stunning accuracy. Each projector is Theater Optimized by video expert William Phelps, using proprietary firmware and optical equipment to offer a contrast ratio of 2100:1, excellent shadow detail and film-accurate color.

The Faroudja projector can be driven directly by an HDMI-equipped Meridian DVD player. Alternatively, the DVP1080 HD Digital Video Processor can be used to convert all analog and digital high definition and standard definition sources to the native 1920x1080p resolution of the projector. The DILA1080pHD retails for $29,995.