Las Vegas — Definitive Technology, the supplier of high-performance component in-room and architectural speakers, continues to venture into new product categories with the planned CES launch of its first Bluetooth speaker, the $199-suggested Sound Cylinder.
The launch will follow the 2012 launch of the brand’s first active soundbar, a 5.1-channel model at a suggested $1,999 with included wireless subwoofer.
The AC/DC Sound Cylinder, initially targeted to retail for a suggested $249, will be available in January to a dealer base that’s broader than the brand’s traditional A/V specialists and will include dealers that sell tablets. The distribution focus will be on consumer electronics specialty stores, online retailers as well as Definitive’s online store, and the company will sell it at a unilateral retail price.
The 2.1 system features DSP, side-firing subwoofer, and a clip that attaches the speaker to most tablets and laptops. The device doubles as a tabletop tablet stand, thanks to a built-in pivoting “kickstand” to position the tablet at a good angle for viewing and listening.
The speaker streams Bluetooth’s SBC codec and the AAC codec over Bluetooth from a docked tablet or from any other Bluetooth device. The Sound Cylinder also features an analog auxiliary audio input to connect to devices with an audio output jack. Its built-in rechargeable battery provides up to 10 hours of playback.
The company said it wants to bring its reputation for performance and build quality to the docking-speaker category by adding the side-firing subwoofer and by using premium materials to deliver “an attractive appearance, precision fit and luxury finish unusual in portable audio products.” The grilles, for example, feature custom-perforated aluminum, and the kickstand and tablet-clamping mechanism are made from injection-molded magnesium alloy, which is strong but lightweight, the company said.
The design results from a collaboration between the Frog Design design company and the Global Design Center, run by Definitive parent DEI Holdings in Vista, Calif., to support DEI’s multiple brands.
“Thanks to rapid advances in portable devices such as tablets and smartphones, enjoying music and video content on the go is within the reach of everyone” said Definitive Technology president Kevin Duffy. “Sound Cylinder answers the need for convenient high-quality audio on the move.”