Emotiva UMC-1 AV preamp-processor
Emotiva's internet-only products have earned the company a place in the hearts of many cost and performance conscious shoppers, and its upcoming UMC-1 AV pre-pro looks to continue the trend. A long time in development, the $699 piece of gear -- a price that the company will hold beyond the initial run -- has finally entered production, garnered a web page of its own on the Emotiva website and should be making its way to enthusiasts who preordered soon. We'll let you hit the link for the full details on what's promised, but highlights include support for the lossless Blu-ray audio formats, Genesis Torino video scaling of all formats up to 1080p across the single HDMI output, 5 HDMI inputs, flexible bass management and an on-screen UI. Sounds good, but what really sets Emotiva apart is the rabid fan base that consistently compares their gear to other stuff way beyond the price point, so our hopes are high on this bit of gear. Separates at receiver prices sound good to us, so if you've got one of these in your system let us know what you think!

[Thanks, Aaron!]