At StJohn Group's exhibit (booth 528), the long-standing conflict between beautiful décor and high-performance sound ends with the CEDIA debut of ARTCOUSTIC wall-hanging loudspeakers and subwoofers.
September 5, 2003 - Indianapolis, IN - The birth of CEDIA more than a decade ago heralded a new focus on style. One of the consequences was the rapid acceptance of in -wall and in -ceiling speakers as a more aesthetically acceptable alternative to conventional loudspeakers. As a measure of their success, in -wall and in -ceiling speakers are widely available today through large retailers and even home -improvement stores. One can argue over the aesthetics of in -walls, and how well they perform compared to traditional speakers. But one truth cannot be debated: They were born of compromise.
ARTCOUSTIC was born in Denmark, a country with a reputation for great audio, great furniture, and unwillingness to accept compromises. Not surprisingly, the designer of ARTCOUSTIC set out to build high -performance loudspeakers that would - like any quality furnishing - be truly welcome as part of a home's decor. And he achieved this by putting them ON the wall.
ARTCOUSTIC loudspeakers are THIN - as slim as 2.5 inches - and hang on the wall like picture frames. Their removable front screens are covered in a choice of elegant fabrics, or can be printed with artwork or photography. Their wood frames come in silver or black, or can be finished to suit. Like any quality furnishing, ARTCOUSTIC loudspeakers can be customized to complement or even define the look of a space.
StJohn Group sales director John Caldwell: "In just two years, ARTCOUSTIC has become one of the hottest speaker products in the UK. They are used in fine home theaters and listening rooms, as well as in commercial spaces such as restaurants and art galleries. They are sold by hi -fi dealers and specified by designers and architects. They have effectively erased the distinction between a loudspeaker and furnishing, yet remain true to their intended purpose: superb reproduction of sound."
StJohn Group market liaison Patricia Leja: "We believe that many music and movie lovers, when faced with possibly upsetting their décor with conventional speakers, too often sacrifice any notion of achieving high -performance sound. Indeed, people - especially women - are conditioned to think that a "killer" sound system consists of gigantic speakers or a gigantic cabinet built to hide them. While ARTCOUSTIC speakers are engineered to provide audiophile -quality sound, they are designed to serve as natural and attractive style elements. This is why we say, ARTCOUSTIC speakers will make you believe in the beauty of sound."
THE DESIGN ELEMENT
Buyers can choose from eight standard screen fabrics or, for additional cost, a growing collection of optional designer fabrics. The acoustically transparent designer fabrics come from two esteemed European houses: Sahco Hesslein and Zimmer & Rohde. All ARTCOUSTIC models offer a choice of silver or black frame; the Diablo Series is also available in white. Custom finishes can be matched to paint chips or samples.
One of the more exciting options is to print artwork or a photograph onto the fabric screen. To date, numerous artists have joined the ARTCOUSTIC Artist Portfolio, making their artwork or photography available for printing onto ARTCOUSTIC speaker screens. Likewise, buyers may submit their own high -resolution images to ARTCOUSTIC. Additional screens can be ordered at any time, making it possible to build a collection of interchangeable screens that complement the décor.
THE PRODUCT LINE
The current ARTCOUSTIC line comprises 13 models of loudspeakers and subwoofers, ranging in size from the Diablo Mini (measuring 10.6"H x 8.3"W x 2.5"D) to the DF130 -90 (51.2"H x 34.5"W x 5"D). There are also three hanging subwoofers (exact same look as the full -range speakers) and a compact powered subwoofer that sits on the floor. Suggested retail prices start at $1100 per pair for the Diablo Mini. Complete 5.1 home theater speaker systems begin at $5,200.
The innovative DF -MULTI deserves special focus. It is a long, narrow speaker designed to mount on the wall beneath a plasma or other flat -screen video display. It contains all three front -channel speakers for a home theater: left, center, and right. (It can also be used strictly as a center channel, matched with other ARTCOUSTIC speakers to the left and right of the video display; or as a one -piece stereo left/right speaker system.) The MULTI is sized to match the width of a typical 42" plasma TV and is offered with optional adaptor screens to match 50" and 60" displays.
The ARTCOUSTIC line also includes smartly styled LINAX equipment storage cabinetry as well as flat speaker wire that is so thin it disappears when taped to the wall and painted. Room acoustics are addressed with the stylish ABCOUSTIC Absorbing Panels. These ultra -thin, frameless sound absorbers - also available in a choice of fabrics or printed art - help improve the acoustics of a listening space while serving as attractive design elements.
ARTCOUSTIC loudspeakers employ high -quality Scandinavian speaker drivers, hand -built crossovers, and low -resonance cabinet material. Unlike membrane -based "flat" speakers, they are true dynamic loudspeakers, delivering the full range and high output levels associated with studio -quality loudspeakers. To obtain this lofty performance from a thin cabinet, ARTCOUSTIC uses a proprietary technology, called QPC, which allows its speakers to provide bass performance equal to speakers having at least twice the internal volume. (QPC addresses the speaker's "Q" and Pressure Control, achieving the behavior of a much larger cabinet).
(Note: ARTCOUSTIC speakers are not to be confused with NXT™ -type membrane speakers, which are typically used with computers or for low -level background music. ARTCOUSTIC speakers are also differentiated from "electrostatic" flat -panel designs that radiate sound from both the front and back of the speaker and hence must be positioned some distance from the wall.)
BROCHURES AND HIGH RESOLUTION PHOTOGRAPHY
Brochures, technical documentation, and high -resolution photography are available for download from the company web site: http://www.ArtcousticUSA.com/.
Designed and engineered in Denmark, ARTCOUSTIC loudspeakers are distributed and marketed in North America by StJohn Group. Qualified consumers who wish to audition the speakers will be directed to an authorized dealer or to the nearest "auditioning" dealer. Consumers may also purchase directly through StJohn Group at suggested retail prices. Contact StJohn Group for details.
About StJohn Group
StJohn Group is a distribution and marketing company specializing in products and services for the custom integration (CI) market. The company's three founding partners - industry veterans John Caldwell, Chris Esse, and Kevin Leja - have been joined by Anthony Grimani, who will serve as Technology Director. Together they have more than 80 years experience in virtually every facet of the consumer electronics industry. StJohn Group is pioneering a "new school" approach to products and marketing strategies - one that will help move CI dealers closer to the mainstream of the home design market.
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