Cool new speakers are making rounds at the CES event in Los Vegas, the latest entrant to the thick of things is transparent aCUBE speaker system designed and developed by San Jose, California-based Coleridge Design Associates. Besides showcasing the speaker system at the CES booth, Coleridge Design has also put up the transparent aCUBE for fund raising on Kickstrater. The all new speaker system combines the goodness of 6-inch cubes handmade clear cast acrylic with amazing sound of Dr Graham Bank’s BMR speaker and Class-D amplifier technology from Maxim.
The most exciting thing about the make, besides the outright beauty is the enhanced sound experience that the speaker delivers. To attain this great sound, the acrylic-make plays a vital role. Unlike most plastics, wood and aluminum bodied speakers, acrylic offers very high internal damping, which makes sure that the enclosures (within the acrylic body) do not resonate and radiate sound ensuring crystal clear sound quality.
Another striking feature about the speaker system is natural, customizable anodized 2mm aluminum grills on the speaker, fashioned after the 1941 Willy’s Jeep grill with 9 slats. The aCUBE speaker system also comes with 10in tall Z-Stand, also make in clear cast acrylic. The Z-shaped stand makes sure the sound and vibration being created by the speaker isn’t transmitted to the tabletop.
To be made available for a retail price of about $180, the transparent aCUBE speaker system features 3.5mm stereo jack, optional input for Airplay, Bluetooth, USB 2.0 and auto-off feature. The speaker has volume control which can be controlled using the source device. The portable speaker system can be carried around anywhere and can also be used as stereo with aCUBE BMR speaker selling for $120.
Introducing the aCUBE BMR – the first Crystal Clear BMR Speaker System Showcases at CES 2013 alongside Kickstarter launch San Jose, CA. January 7, 2013 – Tech start-up, Coleridge Design Associates, is launching a new transparent speaker system that combines the exquisite sound quality of BMR technology with stylish good looks, convenience and affordability. Kickstarter link at:
Clear sound. Through and through
They are inexpensive, beautiful and light. But most importantly they provide exquisite, clear sound due to the inclusion of BMR drivers and the use of acrylic enclosures. Today sees the launch of Coleridge Design Associate’s first solo Kickstarter project: The Coleridge Design aCUBE BMR speaker system. Due to its use of Maxim MAX98400A Class D amplifiers, it will be showcasing exclusively at CES2013 in the Maxim Integrated audio suite at the Venetian Tower, Las Vegas, NV.
Uncompromised, affordable sound
The aCUBE uses 4.5in BMR full range loudspeaker drivers, beautiful handmade clear cast acrylic 6.5in cube enclosures and the latest Class-D amplifier technology from Maxim Integrated. The result: best in class performance loudspeakers that are stylish, exceptional quality, affordable and convenient.
Why BMR loudspeaker drivers? Recently included in a range of Bentley motors, Coleridge Design Associates founder, Geoff Boyd, considers BMR (Balanced Modal Radiator) loudspeaker drivers the “most significant advance in loudspeaker technology since 1925 when Rice & Kellogg invented the loudspeaker as we know it today”. The advantages of BMR speaker technology are multiple, but primarily relate to its pinpoint accuracy, wide dispersion and extended frequency range. BMR technology has already appeared in many standalone loudspeakers but they have largely been in expensive hi-fi or performance compromised speaker systems. The aCUBE is different because it is affordable without sacrificing on quality. What further drives this performance? Clear acrylic enclosures.
Form follows function The trend for translucent technology began with the first Apple iMac and is seeing a renaissance in the consumer electronics world today. With the aCUBE, the use of clear cast acrylic is more than solely aesthetics. It is related to the material’s functional capabilities: acrylic possesses an inherent acoustic benefit, offering great sound quality and high internal damping that does not resonate and radiate sound as much as other materials e.g. most plastics, wood and aluminum. This means the acrylic speaker enclosures can be made light and free of internal bracing and damping materials ensuring the sound is crystal clear and the speakers see-through. It is literally a case of form following function. Eventually, as the product scales, multi-colored acrylic options will be available further adding to the aesthetic element of the aCUBE.
Convenience without sacrifice
Convenience is one of the central reasons that users are turning to monophonic speakers. Although there are times when solo speakers are beneficial, t the aCUBE proves that sound does not have to come at the cost of convenience:
• Optional adaptors include Bluetooth, Apple Airplay, USB and optical S/PDIF meaning the aCUBE can be used with a variety of smartphones, TVs and PCs
• An auto-off feature puts the system into sleep mode after 1-2 minutes waking instantly when audio appears – perfect for Bluetooth and Apple Airplay streaming, as well as TV speakers.
• Volume level control can be set once and left alone allowing the sound level to be controlled by the source device – making the aCUBE remote control redundant
• A portable option contains a travel case and battery back that uses supercapacitors to supplement the heavy power needed to produce exquisite sound meaning you can get great audio on the move.
The Coleridge Design Mission
CNET’s Steve Guttenberg recently asked: ‘Is stereo going out of fashion?’ The drive for single box speakers which in effect are monophonic has taken audio reproduction back to the days when Edison’s cylinder record player ruled the roost. Putting forward the argument that convenience and the trend for single box speakers is getting in the way of great sound, Coleridge Design Associates founder and Managing Director, Geoff Boyd, has made it his mission to provide a low cost and convenient speaker system that can be used as a highquality single speaker device. The bonus?
It can be easily converted into stereo by purchasing a second ‘passive’ aCUBE speaker.
This isn’t the first time Geoff Boyd and Coleridge Design have worked with Kickstarter. Hugely impressed with Scott Wilson’s Tik-Tok acheivement, Geoff licensed touch-pen technology to the Lunatik team which became the “Lunatik Touch Pen” – Scott’s second successful Kickstarter venture. His effort and success inspired Geoff to launch the aCUBE exclusively on Kickstarter.
About Coleridge Design Associates
With over 30 years’ experience in technology and audio visual innovation, Geoff Boyd founded Silicon Valley based Coleridge Design Associates with the objective of building a team of designers, scientists and engineers who are driven by the user experience to innovate by creative design and invention in the Consumer Electronics (CE) and Green
Energy (GE) markets. You can find more information on the company here: http://www.coleridgedesignassociates.com/
The RRP for the aCUBE starts at $180; available on Kickstarter for $150+ pledge
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