The CES Wrap Up

The CES Wrap Up

Blackfire Research kicked off 2017 in Viva Las Vegas to participate in the world’s largest, annual consumer electronics trade show, CES. At the start of each year, CES (and roughly 4,000 exhibiting companies) takes over the Las Vegas Strip, showcasing the latest in hi-tech innovations and prototypes for technology of the future. The exhibition floors were abuzz with the soon-to-be year’s hottest trends: unbelievably thin TVs, autonomous vehicles, multi-screen gaming laptops, Virtual Reality headsets, and – in what tech bloggers are dubbing “The Amazon Home Takeover,” – a wide range of smart home appliances, such as toasters, washer & dryer units, refrigerators, security systems, fans, and more, all aided by Amazon’s voice-activated speaker – Alexa.

As exciting and eye-catching as the exhibition floors were, we at Blackfire couldn’t get too distracted, for we were on a mission to present the industry’s best wireless audio solutions for a wide variety of home entertainment systems and applications.

Over the course of four days, Blackfire held meetings at a suite in the luxurious Venetian, with global industry leaders, partners, investors, and old friends, to demonstrate why we are setting the standard for wireless home entertainment. Among those who visited our suite was Arabian Prince, founding member of the rap group NWA, and driving force behind INNOV8 NEXT. As you may recall, this past November, Arabian and Blackfire’s founder and CEO, Ravi Rajapakse, sat together on a panel to discuss innovation in the music industry at the annual Web Summit in Lisbon, Portugal.

This year at CES, Blackfire had plenty to boast, unveiling not one, but three wireless solutions ready for product integration: Blackfire MA – a cost-effective wireless audio solution for smartphones and multiroom music systems; Blackfire MXD – delivering high-resolution multiroom music with native GoogleCast Audio and Spotify Connect support; and Blackfire IXD – the industry’s first low-latency Wi-Fi surround sound solution enabling smart TVs and set top boxes to deliver the ultimate home theater experience. Blackfire IXD also supports multiroom media streaming, transforming the smart TV or set top box into a whole home media center.

In addition to presenting our audio solutions upstairs at the Venetian, we had the opportunity to visit products with Blackfire’s patented streaming technology on display downstairs at the Onkyo/Pioneer booth. The Onkyo SBT-A500 Network Surround Sound Bar System, The Pioneer SC-LX701 Network A/V Receiver, and the Pioneer MRX-3 Wireless Speaker all proudly displayed the Blackfire Logo. CES also revealed a new, Blackfire enabled 6.1-Channel A/V Receiver and Object-Based Surround Sound Bar from luxury consumer audio company, Integra.

At the Harman/Kardon floor in the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, we caught a glimpse of the wireless HD Audio line, The Omni+ Series, featuring Blackfire’s patented streaming technology. Recently, the Omni 10+ and the Omni 20+ were joined by the Omni Soundbar System, a 2.1 channel soundbar with a wireless subwoofer, powered by Blackfire wireless streaming technology.
So, at the end of a long, but successful conference, the Blackfire Team had plenty to celebrate (over margaritas) before packing up “The Beast” and heading back to San Francisco. Here’s to a great start to 2017!

Powered by Blackfire: The Omni 20

Powered by Blackfire: The Omni 20

Blackfire Research is proud to partner with Harman/Kardon – a leading global manufacturer of audio systems – to make the best wireless speakers on the market. Blackfire’s technology can be found in any of Harman’s wireless Omni speakers. Today, we’ll take another look inside a Harman/Kardon speaker, powered by Blackfire’s patented technology. This time:  the Omni 20, a wireless HD stereo loudspeaker.

With a weight of  2125 grams, the Omni 20 is much larger than its predecessor, the Omni 10, and is a more powerful speaker for larger rooms, with a rated power of 4 x 15W. Compared to the smaller, circular shape of the Omni 10, the Omni 20 is an oval, with a width of 260mm.

Like the Omni 10, the Omni 20 allows for multi-room and multi-channel wireless surround sound with a multi-speaker setup. Harman/Kardon’s user-friendly design allows you to enjoy your music from anywhere in your home, all with the touch of a button:  enjoy the same song throughout the entire home through “Party Mode,” or Press “Link” on the speaker to continue playing your music on another device. Multi-room and multi-channel wireless audio also lets you play different songs in different rooms.

You can stream music from your smartphone or tablet through the Harman/Kardon controller app, or, take advantage of the Omni 10’s Bluetooth capability by streaming music from your tablet or phone. While using Bluetooth, “the speaker will automatically translate the signal to Wi-Fi…all over your house for a truly flexible whole home audio experience”, so you never have to worry about range limitations, dropouts, or low quality audio.

The Omni 20 supports superior, lossless HD audio without synchronization issues, playback lag or dropouts between multiple speakers, and streams up to 24bit/96kHz studio quality sound, all through Wi-Fi.
Harman/Kardon’s Omni 20 wireless HD Stereo Loudspeaker powered by Blackfire comes in either black or white and can be purchased for $299.95 each.