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CEDIA Expo: Origin Acoustics: One Year And Counting

Origin  Acoustics, the architectural speaker company founded by industry veteran Jeremy Burkhardt, has come a long way since it unveiled its first products at last year’s CEDIA Expo.

The company is shipping 140 SKUs to more than 2,000 dealers in 50 countries. And at this year’s CEDIA Expo, it is expanding its selection with about a dozen new products, including its first in-wall and in-ceiling subwoofers, its highest end in-wall speakers to date, and what could be the industry’s first residential outdoor line-source speakers.

At this year’s CEDIA Expo, Burkhardt attributed the company’s growth in large part to a no-tools-needed Zip-Clip speaker-mounting system, which he said other suppliers have begun to copy. He also cites his company’s ability to make 8-inch speakers fit into the cutouts required by competitors’ 6-inch speakers. The company’s 10-inch speakers fit into the cutouts required by competitors’ 8-inch speakers, he added

Though people questioned the need for another architectural speaker maker, he said, Origin reasoned that “if you eliminate tools in installation, dealers will flock to us.”

Burkhardt said he believes Origin is the fastest growing company in the custom-install business. The company recently expanded its staff to 35 from 25.

To keep the momentum going, the company came to the Expo to launch about a dozen new products, including its first in-wall and in-ceiling subs. They consist of a 10-inch $1,400 in-wall sub for retrofit applications, a $1,600 10-inch in-wall sub for new construction, and a $2,000 12-inch in-wall sub for new construction. Their enclosures are made from quarter-inch aluminum instead of thicker MDF to deliver 40 percent more enclosure volume to deliver deeper bass down to 24Hz for the 12-inch sub, Burkhardt said. Two amps to power the subs are priced at $550 and $1,100.

For the ceiling, the company launched a $1,250 and $1,575 model. The former features dual 6-inch drivers in an enclosure whose output is directed through a tube to a small in-ceiling grille, which matches the square and round openings of small downlights. The latter sub uses dual 8-inch drivers firing into a small in-ceiling grille.  Both subs also fire into standard-size in-ceiling grilles that match the size of larger downlights.

The in-ceiling subs can be used with a new $375-each 3-inch satellite in-ceiling speakers, also sized to match small downlights.

For outdoors, the company expanded its landscape series to include line-source speakers that can be mounted to a wall or staked to the ground. Those speakers are designed to control dispersion so music doesn’t intrude into neighbors’ yards or into apartment balconies.

The $600 speakers feature four 3-inch drivers. Depending on whether they are mounted horizontally or vertically, dispersion can be narrowed in the vertical and horizontal planes.

Also new: the company’s highest end in-walls to date, both intended to perform like in-room cabinet speakers at $1,400 and $1,800 each. Both feature narrow baffles and can be used with matching LCRs for use as front speakers in a custom-installed home theater system.