By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
coNEXTion, the direct online B to B supplier of custom products to installers, expanded its speaker selection with the commercial launch of its first in-wall models, first outdoor speakers and first powered enclosed subwoofers. They'll complement the startup's in-ceiling models, launched last year.
The new in-walls are part of the top-end zi series, which simplifies installation with a frame that snaps into place in the wall. Installers place the speaker in the frame and twist it, locking the speaker to the frame via levers without using a screwdriver. The mounting technology first appeared in the zc in-ceiling series launched last year.
The zi series includes three models designed for high-end home theaters and features a rubberized LCR baffle for tweeter and midrange angling and a dipole/bipole surround speaker that can be switched. Two other zi models feature 20 degree swiveling eyeball tweeter. All zi models come with a curved speaker frame and grille and minimal bezel exposure. Prices range from $350 to $1000 each.
In-ceiling zc models feature a woofer that can be angled up to 20 degrees. A tweeter or tweeter/midrange combo sits on the end of a pole that can be extended up to an inch below the ceiling and angled up to 50 degrees for a total range of 70 degrees. Prices range from $275 to $750 each.
The company's first four powered subwoofers are enclosed models not intended for in-wall installation. They start at an estimated suggested retail of $349 and top out at $750 and $900 for two servo-controlled models. The two Sonoma series indoor/outdoor speakers consist of a $600/pair two-way speaker with dual passive radiators and a $375-each model that uses dual tweeters to deliver stereo from a single speaker. It also has dual passive radiators.
Also new: the company's first entry-level series, the r2l series, which features a baffle that rotates firmly into its frame but uses screw-actuated dog frames to lock into place. Like the in-ceiling zc models, the two r2l in-ceiling models feature aiming pole-top tweeter that angles up to 50 degrees. These tweeters don't extend below the ceiling like the zc models do. The in-wall r2l model features the 20 degree swiveling eyeball tweeter of the in-wall zc models. The in-ceiling models are priced at a suggested $125 and $175 each. The in-wall is $175 each.
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