CEDIA Expo 2021: family ties are conducive to the advancement of autonomy
CEDIA Expo 2021 marked Autonomic’s “return”, so to speak, to the show much more than in person or virtually.
Attendees at the Indiana Convention Center saw familiar and family faces at the Autonomic booth at the CEDIA exhibit from September 1-3. Michael de Nigris returned as CEO with Autonomic as an independent entity following the reacquisition of the multi-room audio specialist from Snap One in May 2020.
And Michael de Nigris Jr. has taken on a larger role at the Armonk, New York-based company and engaged in discussions with dealers about what Autonomic has focused on since the purchase, which followed the initial Snap acquisition in 2016.
“Really, the opportunity arose to become independent again and that made sense from a logistical point of view, and it’s really great,” says the young man from Nigris, whose official role is product engineer at Autonomic, and chatted with CE Pro during the Expo.
It also made sense that de Nigris Jr. absorbed so much knowledge of his father’s business to carry on the Autonomic legacy. His education and experience over the past decade has helped boost his self-confidence to take on more responsibility.
“I would say this process is already underway,” he notes. “On a day-to-day basis, I’m in the office, talking to the development team, answering phone calls and managing support, finding new hires for the team and sort of looking for the direction that the products need. to take. “
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Having attended his first CEDIA show ten years ago at the age of 17, and working for Autonomic on and off since, de Nigris can appreciate Autonomic’s rich tradition in the custom industry.
“When I was working in the warehouse, assembling products and doing returns and repairs, I was working in technical support,” he says of his experience in high school, before heading to the school. ‘University of Vermont to study mechanical engineering.
He’s also a huge music fan who loves 2-channel audio, and after graduating, de Nigris moved back to the New York metro area and dove into custom integration. He has worked for local businesses as a field technician making racks, cutting architectural speakers, pulling wire and more.
“I absolutely started at the bottom and ended up working for Audio Video Systems in Plainview, NY, and it was a fantastic opportunity because the quality of the projects they do is unlike anything I’ve ever had. never seen before, ”recalls Nigris.
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“It also gave me the opportunity to work with high end products in our industry, which is just amazing,” he adds, explaining that after about a year he switched to systems engineering. “So I was doing the CAD drawings, the layouts, the speaker plan… I was designing home theaters and all kinds of work there.
“And that, I think, prepared me and I couldn’t imagine a better way to position myself to step into Autonomic and have an understanding of the technician, the dealership, the business owner and what it takes. to be a successful integrator – and what they need from a product to generate that success, ”explains de Nigris.
He cites common integrator issues such as product reliability and serviceability, which Autonomic takes into consideration during product development and firmware updates that can improve the experience for new and existing customers.
Earlier this year, Autonomic announced its new MMS-OS 6.2 operating system for this purpose, which included more than 200 new features and enhancements for its flagship eSeries line, according to the company.
“They need a way to manage their existing installations – Audio Video Systems has over 100 servers in the field, and they are able to update the firmware remotely,” says de Nigris. “And we’ve released some really essential firmware updates. “
The company continues to enhance its line of multiroom / multisource servers, streamers, amplifiers and audio accessories with new features, ensuring integration with smart home systems and popular media streaming services, did he declare.
“We find that resellers, even when they have the option of using music services integrated with control systems, always come back and use our products because of the reliable integration, consistency when using multiple systems of control. check that they have the same type of expectations. with everything they install [the Autonomic product with] and the scope of services, ”explains de Nigris. “Lately, we have mainly focused on the stability of the product. “