Runway Models (of Speakers)

Some people's idea of a perfect speaker might not be a big ugly black box that delivers pristine performance. Obviously, these folks' priorities are way out of whack.

But speaker companies have realized that even people whose priorities are way out of whack have money. So industrious industrial designers got to work creating speakers that may not sound quite as flawless as those big ugly black boxes, but they look one hell of a lot cooler.

Many of these new, stylish speakers sport unusual curves and rakish shapes. Others employ exotic materials. Some simply wear bright colors. But they all caught my eye as I walked around the CEDIA Expo.

Unless you're packing a shirt pocket full of pens and wearing too-short khakis that show off six inches of white tube sock, you're sure to find any of these products a welcome aesthetic alternative to the traditional rectangular box speaker.