Audio News

Audio News for July 11, 2008

Blu-ray Advances in Japan; Is Recession Affecting Home Electronics Sales?; Koch to Distribute Russia’s Melodiya Catalog;

Published on July 11, 2008

Blu-ray Advances in Japan – Data from the Japan Electronics and Information Technology Industries Association is useful in predicting the consumer electronics picture in the West months later. Here’s some hot figures from the JEITA: Compared with the previous year, Blu-ray hardware sales have risen over 200% – 82,000 machines were shipped in Japan vs. 336,000 DVD players.  Flash-based machines have taken over 90% of the digital audio player sales, and auto satellite-navigation systems are selling faster than last year.  Flat-screen displays are showing increases of around 116% over last year, but LCDs have outsold plasma displays by 573,000 to 78,000.

Is Recession Affecting Home Electronics Sales? – Nope, according to Sony Electronics rep Rick Clancy. He says as economic times get tough, people are staying home, but they’re doing it in luxury. “They call it a stay vacation where instead of going out traveling people are staying home and surrounding themselves with some pretty cool electronics. The whole area of home entertainment – maybe it’s cocooning with these economic times – seems to be more prevalent,” said Clancy. A hot trend is connecting your broadband Internet to the big screen.  Sony’s Bravia has a wireless connection from the Net to your living room space.  The number of programs is limited right now but Sony considers it the wave of the future. However,  unlike Sony’s Style stores, many retail consumer electronics stores are seeing a drop in sales.

Koch to Distribute Russia’s Melodiya Catalog
– Koch Entertainment Distribution, via its Canadian label Analekta, announces it is now distributing the major Russian classical label Melodiya for the first time in North America in 15 years.  The first 21 titles are now available at many retail stores in the U.S. and Analekta will release ten additional titles monthly via Koch. Melodiya was the Soviet Union’s state-owned record label, established in l964 and using recording studios and manufacturing facilities thruout the USSR.  The formats then were vinyl records.  By 1973, Melodiya had released some 1,200 LPs and was exporting to more than 70 countries. [Most of the LPs sounded terrible, but the CD reissues are improved and  recent recordings are up to international standards...Ed.]  Melodiya’s recordings of Russian works, including rarely-heard operas, have long been prized by collectors. Their archives contain much historically significant classical music. Analekta’s president Mario Labbé said “We are very proud that thru our U.S. Distribution Agreement with Koch, American music lovers will now have access to this dream vault of over 60,000 masters.”

 




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