Klipsch Takes to the Air(Play)

Klipsch says that sales of iOS devices - those handheld and portable digital multimedia/smartphone/tablet/etc things we all can’t live without - are eclipsing (“eKlipsching”?) sales of HDTVs and other “traditional” entertainment devices. Keeping to the company’s audio-reproduction roots, the Klipsch folks want to bring high-performance audio to you and me in whatever form we find the most convenient, be it a home theater system, a bookshelf system, or a pair of earphones. At the Klipsch press conference this morning, the company presented a couple of the new and soon-to-be AirPlay-enabled audio systems.

Perhaps the coolest system (which was not on display during the presentation) is the “Console”, a 50-inch wide, powered, one-enclosure speaker system with AirPlay built-in. Klipsch says it will play up to 120 dB with 20 - 20k frequency response. The pair of built-in subwoofers are offset in a way that’s designed to eliminate vibration so you could place a large flat-panel TV or pottery/vase/sculpture on it without worrying about it rattling its way off the edge of the cabinet. It reminded me a great deal of the old console stereo cabinet my father still owns, except this one will certainly sound better. The price is expected to be around $6,000.

The new “Stadium” sub/sat, all-in-one system with AirPlay is a smaller system that has a unique retro/futuristic design that features the classic Klipsch horn drivers with dual subwoofers. It’s supposed to produce 110 dB with low-frequency performance down to 30 Hz. AirPlay set up will be made super easy thanks to Klipsch’s set up apps that won’t require the use of a computer. It is expected to be available this Fall for approximately $1,500 - $1,700.