CES Asia 2015 - surround sound, hi-fi and in-car infotainment all on the agenda


DTS had a stand where it was showcasing DTS:X, its new object-based surround sound format and rival to Dolby Atmos.

Surprisingly, it wasn't a home cinema demonstration – instead, DTS had footage of a football match encoded in the new format. The aim was to show off the format’s ability to focus on certain elements of an audio mix - in this case the dialogue.

Via an on-screen menu, you could switch between the stadium announcer and the referee, and jump from the home section of fans to the away end. If this kind of broadcast were to go maintream, the audio options on offer would depend on whom the host broadcaster chooses to record, and where the microphones are placed.

We’ve already had news that Onkyo's new AV receivers will support the new format, and we’re expecting to see it included on the new Ultra HD Blu-ray format as well. We’ll be sure to bring you the first reviews of the DTS:X-toting hardware just as soon as the products start to arrive in our test rooms.

MORE: DTS:X - What is it? How can you get it?

Familiar faces

Wandering around the show floor we spotted a few familiar faces in the world of hi-fi and home cinema. Jamo and Klipsch both had their respective Concert and Reference speaker ranges on display.

The AKG booth was looking good too, with a retrospective on some of its classic over-ear headphones, culminating with the Quincy Jones-designed N90Qs announced at CES back in January. Other headphones on display included the award-winning Y50s and gesture-controlled Reflect Response in-ears from sister brand JBL.

See all our AKG reviews

Hisense was the main TV manufacturer on show, with wall-to-wall curved and flatscreen sets on display. Our attention was also grabbed by its VIDAA MAX laser, short-throw projector. Announced at CES back in January, it can beam a 100in picture sat just 18 inches from a screen.

Audio-Technica had various cartridges lined up to admire, while you could also audition its latest headphones, including the ATH-MSR7.

Also on display were a few iconic products from the company’s vault, such as the AT-DHA3000 amplifier and ATH-W100 headphones.

Monster had a colourful range of on-ear headphones and accessories on show, while we also spotted the recently reviewed Acoustic Research M2 high-resolution music player set up for demo.

See all our Audio-Technica reviews

Connected cars

In-car infotainment featured heavily at CES Asia, with Volkswagen, Audi and Ford all demonstrating connected cars. Audi had a gesture-controlled version of its in-car tablet where users could swipe, wave and pinch their way through menus, music and maps.

We’re already big fans of the Golf’s optional Excite in-car system and the VW R Touch concept, again launched at CES in January, brings a multitude of screens for driver and passengers alike.

VW also had its own gesture-control concept, where your hand hovers over the centre console and you use certain movements to scroll through menus and do a virtual finger tap to select different options.

Many of the products on display in Shanghai had already been launched at the Las Vegas CES show back in January. But it was good to get a look at the Chinese market and hopefully there will be even more brands and products on display at next year's show.

MORE: CES 2015 news highlights, product launches and more

Andy Madden

Andy is Deputy Editor of What Hi-Fi? and a consumer electronics journalist with nearly 20 years of experience writing news, reviews and features. Over the years he's also contributed to a number of other outlets, including The Sunday Times, the BBC, Stuff, and BA High Life Magazine. Premium wireless earbuds are his passion but he's also keen on car tech and in-car audio systems and can often be found cruising the countryside testing the latest set-ups. In his spare time Andy is a keen golfer and gamer.