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SkipJam iMedia Center

The recently announced iMedia Center by SkipJam is what the company calls “the first ever network attached media solution.”

The iMedia solution consists of an iMedia center and optional clients throughout the house. According to the company, SkipJam iMedia technology is a high fidelity, all-digital integrated home entertainment system which combines whole house audio and video distribution with digital recording and home control. SkipJam?s iMedia technology can make a complete whole-house AV system simple to implement starting at an estimated street price of under $800 over any standard wired or wireless home network.

SkipJam’s iMedia system integrates PVR functions, live streaming, universal remote control, on-TV PC access, analog device switching and more.

Geared to the discriminating audio/video enthusiast, the SkipJam iMedia system lets consumers instantly transform any ordinary home computer network into a complete whole-home A/V distribution and control platform.

The iMedia Center can hook up to most media devices and stream digital media throughout your home.

SkipJam iMedia features:

  • High-end audio and video for superior digital audio and video reproduction (e.g. 24-bit 192Khz DAC/ADCs with 114db dynamic range).
  • Personal Video Recorder – Records using MPEG-4 for complete networked multi-tuner recording of favorite shows to any networked hard drive.
  • Universal whole-house remote control – Control any device from anywhere, even while away from home.
  • Live media streaming – Move any AV source ?live? to any other room wired or wireless.
  • Digital Video Recorder – Record DVDs, VHS, and music (even radio) to any networked hard drive to watch any time.
  • No PC Required ? Network AV devices and digital media (MP3, MPEG-2/4/, etc.), even without a home PC.
  • TV to PC connectivity – Play MPEG 1/2/4, MP3, WMA, WAV, Ogg, JPG and more.
  • PC to TV connectivity – Access PC desktop screen on the TV to check e-mail, or run any PC software and see the result on the TV screen, rooms away.
  • Home Intercom ? Use any stereo/TV as a paging speaker or speakerphone.
  • Power – 32/64 bit superscalar MIPS architecture CPU with separate DSP processors for audio and video, dual PCI buses and dual Ethernet ports, integrated TV and FM tuner.
  • Flexibility – 4 analog video inputs (3 S-video and 4 composite), 6 analog audio inputs, 4 PCM digital inputs (both optical and coaxial inputs and outputs), Firewire, USB 2.0, 3 IR output ports, IR Blaster LEDs, RS232 control.

The SkipJam iMedia product line consists of the SkipJam iMedia Center, a networked media switch which sends and receives audio and video and the SkipJam iMedia audio and video players, which can receive but not send video and audio. The entire system can be expanded easily by simply adding components. Also, unlike existing PVR devices like TiVo, the iMedia components can access any networked PC or hard drive for storage. SkipJam iMedia devices use MPEG-4 compression for video.

According to the press release, the iMedia devices are extremely user friendly and can easily be operated through a simple menu system and installed as simply as any stereo component.  Since the devices can write to any hard drive on the network, they have no internal moving parts and therefore are virtually silent.

SkipJam iMedia works with all home networks including 802.11a/b/g, coax, Ethernet, Home-plug, and twisted pair. The system’s software adapts the audio and video compression to match network performance as needed.  Furthermore, SkipJam iMedia?s sophisticated peer-to-peer architecture is highly robust and designed to reduce network traffic for a fast seamless performance.

SkipJam iMedia will be available Q3 2004 through the retail and VAR channel. The products will be priced at around $799 for the SkipJam iMedia Center, $499 for SkipJam iMedia Player, $299 for SkipJam iMedia Audio Player, and $499 for the SkipJam Audio Player Pro.

Check back with Designtechnica for product reviews and more information as it becomes available.

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