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IFA Berlin entertainment

Ralf Jurrien
IFA Report
Wednesday 15th, August 2007
Posted by: Ralf Jurrien

Music of the finest quality can be heard at the IFA: All the electronics needed to produce high quality sound can regularly be found there. The IFA section Audio Entertainment occupies a prominent place - in Halls 1.2., 2.2 and 3.2., right at the main entrance to the Messe Berlin grounds. It features all the top names in the world of sound, from the manufacturers of the latest hi fi and home cinema components to suppliers of equipment for mobile entertainment, and those manufacturers who produce real high end works of art in small quantities, thereby pushing the boundaries of what is feasible a little further each year. A visit to the IFA Berlin 2007 is essential for all home cinema enthusiasts.

IFA Berlin

IFA Berlin - AV receivers & Amplifiers
This is where they will be able to see the new generation of AV receivers and amplifiers, which will be making their world debut, along with multi-channel sound of unparalleled clarity and dynamic. For the first time the new models can now decode the outstanding sound formats provided by media such as high definition Blu-ray discs and HD-DVDs. This is all made possible by the latest version of the digital interface HDMI, which enables super-sharp HD images to be accompanied by suitable sound from as many as eight channels - bit for bit this is identical with the sound of studio recordings.

IFA Berlin - Twin channel amplifiers
While home cinema impresses with its diversity of channels and breathtaking performance data, among traditional hi fi equipment old-established stereo technology is enjoying a revival. Twin channel amplifiers for the purists, almost completely ignored by many manufacturers, are returning to the IFA Berlin 2007 in large numbers. Although CD players have been largely replaced by DVD playback units, they are now in demand again among the many new innovations. And there are very good reasons for this: the circuitry has been redesigned to improve the sound in order to extract the last ounce of quality from a CD collection. Mobile players for digital music are part of one of the most important and growing trends in the entire consumer electronics sector, and they can be found in countless versions among the new items on offer at the IFA Berlin 2007: as tiny USB memory sticks than can fit in a pocket, as colourful, multi-purpose units which can also serve as video and photo players, and of course as multimedia mobile phones too, with a massive storage capacity to hold an MP3 music archive.

IFA Berlin - Hi-fi
The entire hi-fi world has embraced this massive new trend: among the innovative new developments at the IFA Berlin 2007 virtually all the sound systems are provided with special sockets for these tiny players. In many cases even car radios are now being equipped to operate in conjunction with mobile players. Many of the new models have USB ports which can accept MP3 players. Some of the latest car radios can even be provided with a wireless link to an MP3 jukebox via Bluetooth.

IFA Berlin - Hi-fi radio receivers
The IFA Berlin 2007 also features some fascinating developments in the radio field. In addition to new audio formats for digital radio broadcasting, sound reproduction has been improved with multi-channel technology, and higher quality is now possible using reduced transmission bandwidths, a development that not only improves the sound but also helps to cut costs. For outstanding enjoyment there is also radio via satellite, another highlight of the IFA. The satellite platform Astra now beams hundreds of radio stations, including all the main German-language programmes, in uncompromising stereo quality. Concerts and radio plays are being heard increasingly in digital surround sound in the home too. This has already prompted a reaction among several hi fi manufacturers. At the IFA Berlin 2007 a number of hi fi radio receivers are making their debut which have been specially designed to pick up satellite signals.

IFA Berlin - Radio Symphony Orchestra Berlin
A satellite radio receiver with high end ambitions is among the most spectacular exhibits at the IFA Berlin 2007: the “world’s most expensive music system”, an impressive combination of the very best and costliest high end components available on the world market. Traditionally a great attraction for the public, this year it can be compared with an appropriate challenger, the musical original. On 31 August 2007 the Radio Symphony Orchestra Berlin under the direction of its chief conductor Marek Janowski will be giving a special concert, beginning at 4 p.m. in the exhibition hall at the Funkturm (radio tower). At the same time the “world’s most expensive sound system“ will be broadcasting the concert and demonstrating the perfection that only the finest systems can bring: presenting the full range of symphonic sounds, with all its dynamics, its comprehensive range of sounds and with such fine differentiation that it seems as if one could reach out and touch the instruments.

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The IFA International Consumer Electronics Show took place every two years, but since 2006 the IFA show became once again an annual event under Berlin’s famous Funkturm landmark. In the early days, back in 1924 the IFA began in Berlin as the “Great German Radio Exhibition”. In the meantime, the International Consumer Electronics Show has not only become the world's biggest trade show for consumer electronics but also presents the world's largest number of product premieres in consumer electronics and home appliances. At IFA 2009 more than 3 billion Euros worth of orders were generated. IFA 2010 could even surpass this number! The total number of exhibitors at last year’s IFA show was 1164 from 46 countries. The total number of trade visitors was 134194 from 105 countries, quite amazing numbers. The IFA 2010 show news will come to you live from the show floor, so stay tuned!