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ProSource Partners with SnapAV on Select Brands

SnapAV logoProSource, a large industry dealer buying group, announced this morning that they are partnering with SnapAV, a diversified manufacturer/distributor of a wide group of diverse brands, to offer programs on several of their brands to group members. According to the ProSource management, members will be offered access to SnapAV’s Araknis, Luma, OvrC, Visualint, and WattBox brands.

See more on this ProSource announcement which is a bit unusual… Continue reading

Thiel is Toast, Specialty Audio Takes Another Hit

New Thiel logo black backgroundAfter a tumultuous five-year period, which began in 2012 when Thiel was sold to Tennessee private investor David B. Griffin, we can now confirm that Thiel Audio has been closed for good. Failing some kind of 11th hour rescue, another great American audio brand will be relegated to the dustbin of history.

See what we know of the closing of Thiel Audio… Continue reading

Recent Purchaser of Gibson Brands Properties Files Lawsuit

Gibson Valley Arts buildingAnd They Said It Wouldn’t Last; Hearing Set for This Friday

Somera Road, Inc., a real estate investment firm that has recently purchased several properties from Gibson Brands, Inc., has filed a lawsuit against the company seeking to enforce a purchase agreement that they say Gibson has violated.  The lawsuit was filed in Nashville, Tennessee in the Davidson County Chancery Court, according to a report by the Nashville Post.

See more on this eruption of war between Gibson and its new partners… Continue reading

Whoa CES! Power Outage Plunges Show into Darkness

A News Story and a Metaphor

CTA's marketing message for CESCTA’s marketing message for the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) this year was “Whoa!” While this is a reference to surprising innovations, it now appears that the biggest Whoa! to emerge from CES was a power blackout that hit the Central and South Halls of the Las Vegas Convention Center on Wednesday afternoon. Social media was buzzing and many show attendees posted images of the darkened halls with some of the biggest booths – Samsung, Panasonic – quite literally in the dark.

There really is nothing sadder-looking than a technology tradeshow…without power. Considering the coverage we’ve seen about CES in the general media this year, that blackout could be a metaphor about the declining power the show holds over the market these days.

See more on a darkened CES, the industry’s biggest tradeshow… Continue reading

Gibson Stuns Again; Pulls Out of NAMM Show

Photo of Gibson's Tokyo Showroom

A little more than a month ago, Gibson stunned the music world by abruptly shutting down Cakewalk, a music software company it had acquired in 2013. Now the music industry is abuzz again, after an announcement from Gibson Brands that it has decided to pull out of the NAMM show – the biggest music industry tradeshow, taking place at the Anaheim Convention Center January 25-28. Gibson Guitars is one of the top guitar manufacturers in the world, and the thought of a major music industry tradeshow without their representation has tongues wagging throughout the industry, with plenty of speculation about the “real” reason Gibson chose to pull out.

See more on this surprising news by Gibson… Continue reading

Strata-SERIES: RMR – Series Wrap-Up

Strata-SERIES: RMR Wrap-UpOne month ago, on December 6th, Strata-gee launched a series of articles on recurring monthly revenue (RMR) programs based on research conducted for a cover story in the December issue of Residential Systems Magazine. That Series, called Strata-SERIES: RMR,  ran the entire month of December and into January with a total of five posts of content, plus an additional Series introduction and this Series wrap-up.

What did we learn about RMR? Much! Read on… Continue reading

Classé Rises Again as Part of Sound United

Sound United logoSound United announced yesterday it had completed the acquisition of shuttered high-end brand Classé Audio from former owner Bowers & Wilkins. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The announcement confirms the deal of which Strata-gee reported last month when Sound United quietly entered negotiations to buy the brand.

See more on this news which breathes new life into Classé… Continue reading

Monster & Noel Lee Must Pay Beats Nearly $8M in Legal Fees

On a Roll, Beats Files New Lawsuit Against Monster Seeking $100 Million

Photo of Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine

Dr. Dre & Jimmy Iovine of Beats

While you were drinking your eggnog or otherwise enjoying your holidays, the Grinch stole all the good cheer from Monster LLC and owner Noel Lee when a jury in the case of Monster LLC v. Beats, et al agreed with Beats and ordered Monster and  Lee to pay them $7,916,201.64 as reimbursement for their legal expenses.

And Beats has more bad news for the Monster camp… Continue reading

Strata-SERIES: RMR – Smart Help for a Quick Start in RMR

Strata-SERIES: RMR[NOTE: This post is part of a series of articles on recurring monthly revenue programs we call Strata-SERIES: RMR. It will likely make more sense to you if you start by reading our Series Introduction here… and then our Topic Introduction and First Installment here…]

Because he had worked with an alarm company for the last twenty years, Matt Walin of Costa Mesa, CA-based Brilliant AV was very familiar with the concept of RMR programs as it related to central station security system monitoring. But as it specifically relates to residential AV and home automation solutions, it was about two years ago when they began exploring the process of offering their clients some form of a maintenance agreement covering their system installations.

Residential AV RMR, it turned out, was a horse of an entirely different color… Continue reading

Control4 Acquires Ihiji Validating Importance of Remote Management


Control4 logo, newControl4 announced today that it has acquired remote system monitoring and management pioneer Ihiji of Austin, TX. The terms of the transaction were not disclosed. The deal sends a strong signal of the growing importance of remote installation monitoring and management systems for integrators moving forward.

See more on this new acquisition by Control4… Continue reading