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Polk Launches Mass Sub-Brand

3/15/2007 12:07:00 PM Eastern

Baltimore — Polk Audio, which is owned by Directed Electronics, is launching a new sub-brand called Polk Audio Designs for products such as iPod accessories, radios, audio systems and other products.

Polk Audio Designs will be offered through existing Polk Audio dealers and additional stores.

“Our vision is that Polk Audio Designs products will meet the needs of customers that we have not addressed in the past. Specifically, we’re thinking of those consumers who are not audio hobbyists but who comprise an important segment of the market,” said Jim Herd, president of Polk Audio.

The first product under the new brand is the MiDock10, a portable iPod audio system to be sold exclusively through RadioShack at a suggested $199. A similar version called the MiDock Studio will be sold through other retailers in April. Also new is an HD radio/CD audio shelf system called the HDX3 to be sold through RadioShack starting in May at $299.

The MiDock Studio portable iPod speaker system will work with any iPod model from the nano to the 80GB iPod. It includes 3.25-inch drivers, side-mounted handles and remote. It works on AC power or eight C-cell batteries and can be connected to a PC. It will be sold through select big box retailers as well as existing Polk Audio retailers and online at PolkAudio.com.

The MiDock 10, to be sold exclusively through RadioShack, will be a smaller version that is styled differently.

The HDX3 HD radio/CD player is a three-piece system with detached two-way speakers. It receives AM/FM and HD radio stations as well as sideband “multicast” channels. The display can also show text data that may be broadcast over HD radio such as traffic, weather, and artist name and song title. It can also playback MP3 encoded CDs.

High end audio products will continue to be marketed under the Polk Audio brand.

Marketing manager Paul DiComo stated, “Our traditional business has been component loudspeakers. We’re getting farther a field because the world has changed. There’s certainly a greater desire on the part of consumers to have music in more places; to have their music be portable. We think we can add value to that by bringing higher end audio sensibilities to those kinds of products.”

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