Macworld US has announced its Best of Show awards for Macworld Conference & Expo 2004 in Boston.

To be eligible for an award products must either be making their debut at the show or be recently introduced and creating a buzz.

In the winner's enclosure are Native Instruments, Parliant, Harman Multimedia, @Last Software, and Gee Three.

Native Instruments wins for its new Guitar Rig software, which transforms a Mac into a high-end guitar effects, amplification and virtual effects set-up. It ships with a foot controller that lets guitarists activate these effects.

Parliant's PhoneValet Message Center also won praise. This product extends the Mac into a telephone answering service, with voicemail, Caller ID, call recording and faxing. It uses a USB interface that connects to the phone line.

Harman Multimedia's JBL On Stage (which ships in September in Europe), is a powerful portable set of 12W external speakers for iPod. It works with all three generations of iPod, and can recharge them.

@Last Software's SketchUp 4.0 introduces new features to make it easier for architects and other 3D designers to create projects. These include tools to push or pull a surface along a path, a feature that applies textures or photos across surfaces.

Gee Three's latest collection of Slick Transitions and Effects for iMovie (volumes 7 and 8) also won praise from Macworld US editors.