With Dolby Digital, DTS, THX Surround EX, DTS-ES, and Dolby Pro Logic II surround sound decoding, McIntosh's MX134 THX Ultra-certified digital preamp/processor is ready to be the center of any state-of-the-art home theater. It's also got a 7.1-channel analog audio input for hookup of an external processor or a DVD-Audio or Super Audio CD player. Decoded surround signals are provided at line-level RCA jacks as well as a multipin DB-25 jack for single-cable hookup to a power amp with a DB-25 input. Along with two component-video inputs, the processor provides both composite- and S-video connections for its 11 A/V inputs and has three coaxial and three optical digital audio inputs. Price: $7,000. www.mcintoshlabs.com, 800-538-6576
New members of Energy's Veritas line include two floor-standing speakers, the V2.4 (shown, standing 46 inches tall) and V2.3; two bookshelf models, the V2.1 and V2.2 (neither shown); and the V2.0C center speaker and V2.0R surround (both shown). All are vented, three-way designs except for the sealed V2.0R, which also lets you select quasi-dipole, direct-radiating, or quasi-bipole characteristics by altering the balance between its front- and side-mounted drivers. Each speaker combines between one and three 6 1/2-inch woofers with a 1-inch aluminum-dome tweeter and one or two 2-inch midrange drivers. In several models the tweeter and midrange are housed in a separate module whose enclosure and crossover network are designed for wide dispersion. The V2.4's frequency response is rated as 30 Hz to 20 kHz ±3 dB; the others differ only in their bass limits. All are finished in high-gloss black, with all but the V2.0R also available in cherry veneer. Prices: left/right pairs, $1,000 to $3,500; V2.0C, $750 each. www.energy-speakers.com, 416-321-1800
Your computer can be a great tool for editing digital video, but only if it's equipped with the right input/output ports. The DV Wonder from ATI lets you add three IEEE 1394 ports to a PC that has a Pentium III processor running at 300 MHz or higher. It fits neatly into a PCI card slot on the motherboard and is compatible with Windows 2000, 98 SE, and Me. Once you've installed the supplied software and transferred footage to your hard drive, you can edit your video in MPEG-1 or MPEG-2 format and add transitions and effects. Price: $49. www.ati.com, 905-882-2600
The VHS format may be yesterday's technology, but JVC's HM-DH30000U D-VHS digital VCR extends it into the future. Connected via its IEEE 1394 port to a similarly equipped HDTV tuner (EchoStar says it has one in development), the deck can record up to 4 hours of high-definition TV (HDTV) programming on a special 50-gigabyte cassette. Its high-speed mode operates with a data-transfer rate of 28.2 megabits per second (Mbps), far higher than the 19.3 Mbps HDTV requires. The built-in MPEG-2 encoder can convert any composite- or S-video signal to digital format for recording, but the VCR can also play and record in analog VHS, S-VHS, and S-VHS ET modes. It has a wideband component-video output in addition to its IEEE 1394 port. Price: $2,000. www.jvc.com, 800-526-5308
With Xantech's MRC44 multizone system, you can route audio and video to up to four rooms in your house. The system comprises a controller/amplifier, four LCD keypads, and four infrared (IR) emitters to relay commands to your gear. It controls up to four sources - such as a DVD player, satellite receiver, cable box, and VCR - and routes the output to any or all of the zones. Each zone has composite-video and stereo speaker outputs, and zones can be linked to receive the same source. The four zone amps are rated to deliver 25 watts per channel. Each of the keypads comes with a universal mounting bracket, and the controller has an RS-232 port for software upgrades. Price: $3,000. www.xantech.com, 818-362-0353
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