FrontRunners: Heavy Metal

Much of the roughly 700-pound weight of the new 5-foot-7-inch-tall Sonus Faber Flagship loudspeaker (www.sonusfaber.com) rests in the huge vibration conveyors at the cabinet’s top and bottom. The considerable mass and clamshell shape of these anodized aluminum blocks trap and collect the energy generated by audio frequency resonance. A vertical steel rod connecting the blocks transfers these vibrations to a dampening device, which cancels the vibrations. A 4-inch voice coil drives the side-firing 15-inch nano-carbon-fiber-skinned woofer for tight low-end responses down to 18 Hz. Sonus Faber is making only 30 pairs of the speakers, two of which are available from Sumiko Audio (www.sumikoaudio.net) for $200,000, which includes set up and in-room calibration.

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