FrontRunners: Sound Design

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Think of the Sonora, an electronics cabinet created by Sensorial Design (+39.0922.44.14.36, of Sicily, as the body of a violin—albeit a very large violin at 8 feet tall, 13/4 feet deep, and from 12 to 141/2 feet wide. As with a violin, the Sonora’s design does more than just make the cabinet visually appealing; its shape and the materials used to construct it affect the sound that comes from it.

The cabinet’s flowing lines and varying wood tones correct inherent acoustic flaws such as unwanted resonance. The Sonora absorbs frequencies as low as 40 Hz, which can create a booming bass, and spreads, or reflects, frequencies above 400 Hz. The cabinet’s curved surfaces and inclined and undulating planes prevent stationary waves (another cause of resonance) and promote diffusion to broaden and intensify the sound, so that you experience the sensation of being enveloped by the music—just as you would at a live event.

Sensorial Design has no U.S. distributor, but the Sonora is available directly from the company.