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Archive by Brad Gibson

Waves MaxxAudio Sound Enhancement Comes to Medical Research with the First MRI Active Noise-Canceling Headphones

— Optoacoustics’ optical fiber-based headphones now restore and enhance the full sound spectrum for MRI environments —

The Consumer Electronics Division of Waves, the industry leader in professional audio digital signal processing and recipient of a Technical GRAMMY® award, is proud to see its MaxxAudio technologies employed in Optoacoustics’ OptoACTIVE™ headphones for advanced MRI medical environments.

OptoACTIVE is the world’s first real-time active noise-canceling headphone system for MRI, capable of reducing 95% of the EPI gradient noise routinely produced by magnetic resonance imaging equipment. Wearing OptoACTIVE headphones eliminates the most disturbing MR noise familiar to doctors, technicians and patients, dramatically changing and broadening research that can be performed using 3T and 7T MRI.

Working with Waves Audio, Optoacoustics has supplemented the OptoACTIVE’s noise reduction capabilities with embedded MaxxAudio algorithms to achieve powerful sound enhancement.

“Together with Optoacoustics, Waves MaxxAudio brings pro audio enhancement to a whole new audience of advanced medical researchers,” said Optoacoustics CEO Dr. Yuvi Kahana. “After achieving 60 dB active attenuation of the main EPI noise in MRI, we realized that MaxxAudio’s amazing psycho-acoustic signal processing brings a new level of sound quality to OptoACTIVE.”

“Waves is delighted to work in collaboration with an industry leader like Optoacoustics,” said Tomer Elbaz, General Manager of Waves Consumer Electronics Division. “The incorporation of MaxxAudio in such a critical and demanding aspect of the medical field is a testament to the commitment, high quality and uncompromising standards Waves brings to our partnerships.”

The benefits of utilizing Waves MaxxAudio in OptoACTIVE headphones are numerous. Optoacoustics engineers use the proprietary MaxxAudio toolset to restore a full range of rich, natural speech and music sounds, despite the harsh noise of MRI environments. Particularly in fields like advanced functional MRI brain research, MaxxAudio enables never-before-experienced sound quality, expanding the possibilities for new levels of research and real-time monitoring, and providing the doctors and brain researchers with more precise feedback.

One brain researcher who benefits dramatically from OptoACTIVE high quality audio is Oren Levin, an MR imaging technician at the Tel Aviv Sourasky Medical Center in Israel. “We have numerous projects using audio stimuli as a crucial part of research,” Levin explained. “For example, we have a large project examining emotions while viewing movie scenes, and their effect on our brains. The sound quality of the OptoACTIVE system gives us the ability to make the patient’s surroundings very similar to the cinematic experience.”

Levin added: “It’s as good as any professional stereo headphones, which couldn’t be used here before. We haven’t measured it, but I can tell you that the OptoACTIVE audio quality is the same.”

“Partnering with Waves enables our company to offer high-end, recording-studio-quality products to a sector that has been severely restricted by the most complex noise problems known, like extremely high SPL with difficult harmonics at high frequencies,” Dr. Kahana added. “OptoACTIVE headphones attenuate the most disturbing noise in the MR environment, and now Waves improves the whole spectrum with its fantastic high-end sound solution.”

OptoACTIVE headphones use Optoacoustics’ highly successful fiber optic sensor technology, which is ideal for use in MRI and other environments where conventional electronics devices are not suitable. The EPI sequences created by magnet rotations in MRI often exceed 120 dB in a 3T scanner (roughly the same noise level as a jet engine at takeoff). Even more challenging for engineers seeking a robust solution for MRI noise are the noise transients and harmonics that are generated at up to several KHz during various MR duty cycles, and which exhibit endless patterns of variation. To remedy this, Optoacoustics implements a highly-selective digital algorithm which actively attenuates EPI gradient noise. This proprietary real-time method drives the same noise created by the MR machine out of phase. Superimposing both real and out-of-phase sounds achieves the desired cancellation.

Optoacoustics also plans to introduce Waves MaxxAudio in additional fiber optic sensor-based systems, like its industry gold-standard FOMRI-III™ noise-cancelling microphones for functional MRI, and the forthcoming wireless IR version of its pioneering IMROC™ communications system for interventional MRI.

For more information, please visit www.maxx.com and www.optoacoustics.com.

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New Bose® L1® Model 1S Portable Line Array System and Bose B2 Bass Module Offer a Unique Combination of Portability and Performance

Framingham, Massachusetts, September 25, 2012 – Today, Bose expands its L1 family of line array systems with the new L1® Model 1S system, a portable line array that offers the best combination of performance and portability in an L1 system. The L1 Model 1S system connects musicians, DJs and other performers with audiences of up to 300 at parties, presentations, and events. A new Bose® B2 bass module is also available for the L1 Model 1S and L1 Model II systems, delivering more low-frequency output for L1 system users who require more powerful bass.

L1 Model 1S System: Wide Coverage, Clear Sound
Like the L1 Model II and L1 Compact systems, the L1 Model 1S system uses proprietary technology to deliver clear, powerful sound throughout the entire listening area. Its 12-speaker line array with Articulated Array® speaker technology provides 180-degree horizontal coverage with less drop-off in sound level than conventional systems. Whether at a live music venue, community theater or a wedding reception, performers and audiences hear full, detailed, tonally balanced sound whether in front of the L1 Model 1S system or off to the extreme sides.

The L1® Model 1S system consists of four lightweight pieces that can be set up and broken down in minutes without the need for speaker stands or wires. And it can be easily packed into three included carrying bags. The materials and construction are designed to meet the rigorous demands of musicians, DJs and general PA applications.

The L1 Model 1S system also includes an integrated ToneMatch® port that provides a single-cable digital and power connection to the optional T1 ToneMatch audio engine, a multichannel audio device that provides four input channels with independent selection of ToneMatch presets and effects. It gives musicians access to tone-shaping technologies and provides a complete suite of studio-class effects and processing, as well as additional channels for instruments or microphones when used with Bose® L1 portable line array systems.

B2 Bass Module: Simple Setup, Serious Bass
The high-performance B2 bass module is designed for users who require more powerful bass output for a variety of applications. Featuring two 10-inch-high excursion woofers mounted in a rugged enclosure, the B2 module is engineered to work with the L1 Model 1S and Model II systems.

The B2 module includes a rear-panel switch with three output settings, each of which is automatically sensed and equalized by the L1 system for optimized performance. Interlocking end caps enable up to two B2 bass modules to be stacked together.

Bose L1 Portable Line Array Systems
The new L1 Model 1S system is the latest in an expanding line of portable line array systems from Bose. When placed behind the performer, Bose L1 systems eliminate the need for separate PA speakers and monitors, allowing the performer and the audience to experience nearly the same sound on stage and in the venue. The portable, lightweight components connect easily without the need for speaker stands, take only a few minutes to set up and require minimal cargo space. Designed for small- to medium-sized venues, they provide a viable alternative over conventional PA systems.

The L1® family also includes the L1 Model II system, the most advanced L1 system featuring a 24-speaker articulated line array designed for an audience of 500. The L1 Compact system, the lightest and easiest-to-set-up L1 system, features a six-speaker curved articulated line array to bring much of the performance benefits of the L1 systems to DJs, musicians, and other performers and presenters who want to reach an audience of up to 100 listeners.

The L1 Model 1S system and B2 bass module will be available separately from Bose beginning immediately. The complete line of Bose L1 portable line array products can be purchased directly from Bose and through authorized Bose dealers nationwide. For more information about Bose® products for musicians, visit bose.com or call 1-888-301-2073.

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Auralex® Offers ProFusor II™ Fabric Wrapped Sound Diffusor

— ProFusor II™ keeps sound waves from grouping without removing acoustic energy in a critical listening environment —

INDIANAPOLIS, IN, SEPTEMBER 20, 2012 – Auralex® Acoustics, Inc., the world’s leading brand of acoustical treatments and soon to celebrate its 35th anniversary, introduces the new ProFusor II™ Fabric Wrapped Sound Diffusor. ProFusor II addresses flutter echo without removing acoustic energy in the room or greatly changing the frequency content of the sound. By incorporating ProFusor II’s, the user can make a small space seem large and a large space seem even larger. ProFusors allow users to enhance the accuracy of critical listening environments and create a larger “sweet spot.”

Ideal for use in residential theaters, listening rooms, concert halls, recording studios, houses of worship and various other residential and commercial applications, this engineered quadratic residue diffusor is available in two sizes (ProFusor22: 2′x2′x3″; and ProFusor24: 2′x4′x3″) and five fabric color options (Ebony, Pumice, Mesa, Sand and Shadow). ProFusor is manufactured from Class A fire rated materials, and its 3″ depth and decorative fabric allow it to fit nicely into many attractive custom designs for those requiring uncompromising performance and great aesthetics.

For more information, please visit www.auralex.com.

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Auralex’s Acclaimed Free Personalized Room Analysis Service Helps AV Systems Integrators Build Rooms and Build Business From Coast To Coast

— AV systems integrators in all parts of the country have found tremendous value in Auralex’s Free Personalized Room Analysis Service, which helps them analyze customers’ environments for effective sound treatment —

INDIANAPOLIS, IN, SEPTEMBER 19, 2012 – Auralex® Acoustics, Inc., the world’s leading brand of acoustical treatments and soon to celebrate its 35th anniversary, has recently been providing its Free Personalized Room Analysis service for AV systems integrators and other sound professionals nationwide. The service, which allows users to enter key parameter values on Auralex’s website, then calculates the dimensions, draws virtual 3D renderings of the project and suggests the most appropriate Auralex acoustical treatment projects for it, is free and has proven to be a tremendously valuable asset for AV professionals.

In Mendon, New York, Jeff Bradford, Owner of The Sound Guys – a custom integrator of distributed audio and video systems, as well as home theaters, home automation, lighting control, closed-circuit TV and high-tech telephone and security systems – has been relying on the Auralex Free Personalized Room Analysis service for over three years. “We apply it to every home theater and media room we build,” he says. “The service is great and it’s saved us money, time and effort. What we especially like is the ability to do all of the renderings in the right colors. And it’s also helped us bring in more new business, and as a result, new revenue. That’s pretty fantastic for a ‘free’ service.”

Deep in the heart of Texas, where Bjorn’s Audio Video provides specialty retail services and home theater design for customers in the San Antonio area, Jeff Griffin, the company’s Project Manager and Systems Designer, says they’ve also been happily using the Auralex Free Personalized Room Analysis service for over three years. Griffin says that among other advantages, the service provides a great visual way to clearly explain to customers what rooms will look like when they’re done and what the actual benefits will be from acoustical treatment. “They can see where the panels will be when it’s all finished, and that’s very reassuring for many of them, since some customers can’t visualize a finished room as well as others can,” he says. “It also lets them see you as a subject-matter expert, which adds to the overall sense of professionalism. It all helps the customer understand the concepts of acoustical treatment, which is something that may seem hard to grasp initially but which will benefit them tremendously in the end. And Auralex enables that.”

Over on the West Coast, Jim Kingsley, Owner of Kingsley AV, which has been serving the mid- to high-end home theater and music system market in Irvine, California, since 1991, says he just began using the Auralex Free Personalized Room Analysis service in the last year and the experience has been excellent for both him and his customers. “I send Auralex the key information, including dimensions of the room, what kind of speakers I’m using and where the seating is, and they provide me with an exact plan for laying out where the absorption and diffusion needs to be and what types of products are best to use and where to put them for the best results,” explains. “It’s simple and very effective. Auralex has the experience with acoustics, they’re trained in acoustical engineering and they understand what it takes to transform a room.” Kingsley adds that the Auralex Free Personalized Room Analysis service not only helps his company deliver a better outcome, but the detailed acoustical plan that the Auralex Free Personalized Room Analysis service provides also reassures his customers about their investment in the acoustical aspect of their design. ”The clients are more comfortable about that, and that means improved revenues and happier customers for us,” he says. “That’s a great outcome.”

About Auralex’s Free Personalized Room Analysis
Whether you have specific acoustical concerns you are trying to address or just want to achieve the most accurate listening environment possible, Auralex’s Free Personalized Room Analysis is a cost-effective solution for diagnosing and treating acoustical inaccuracies. The service allows customers to feed information about the environment to Auralex so the company’s Application Specialists can immediately begin evaluating the room’s acoustical needs. Customers simply fill out a form (online or downloadable) with details about their project and provide diagrams with room dimensions. This information is then used to render an acoustical model of the space and to determine the most effective acoustical treatment plan for the specific room and application.

For more information, please visit www.auralex.com.

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Wharfedale Debuts Its Ultra Power Cube (UPC) Subwoofers

— Two New Models Offer Versatile Remote-Control Setup Options and Elegant Finishes —

Hopedale, MA, Sept 18, 2012 — Sound Import, LLC, the exclusive U.S. distributor for Wharfedale loudspeakers, introduces Wharfedale’s Ultra Power Cube (UPC) subwoofers. The new UPC subwoofers each feature dual drivers for powerful, articulate bass and offer a full range of adjustments via their remote controls to achieve optimum performance in any home theater or stereo music system-and-room.

Models in the Ultra Power Cube range include the UPC-10 (dual 10-inch woofers, built-in 500-watt amplifier, SRP: $1,599) and the UPC-8 (dual 8-inch woofers, built-in 350-watt amplifier, SRP: $1,199).

Wharfedale’s UPC subwoofers utilize a dual-woofer arrangement in which the woofers are mounted opposite each other in the enclosure, to complement each other and mechanically reinforce each other’s movement for maximum bass output and efficiency. The woofers feature a high-excursion, long-throw design and are matched to the built-in amplifiers, enabling the UPC-10 and UPC-8 to deliver clear, precise, powerful low-frequency response to 30Hz.

Wharfedale’s UPC subwoofers make it easy to achieve optimal setup and a seamless blend with the main home theater or stereo speakers in any listening environment and custom installation, home theater or stereo music system. Both models feature controls for volume, variable low-pass crossover, crossover slope and phase adjustment, and provide connections for stereo and mono (LFE) line in and speaker-level inputs. All adjustments can be easily made via the supplied remote control and convenient front-panel LED display screen, which can be dimmed if desired. Adding to their versatility, the UPC-10 and UPC-8 offer a selection of sound-effect modes that enable listeners to tailor the sound of the subwoofers to provide expansive impact for movie, two-channel or surround music listening.

The UPC-10 and UPC-8 are offered in a choice of alluring wood and high-gloss finishes. Available finishes include Rosewood Cherry Veneer, Vintage Cherry Veneer and Black Oak Veneer. Their appearance perfectly complements Wharfedale Jade Series loudspeakers and any living environment.

Like every Wharfedale loudspeaker, UPC subwoofers are designed and built completely in-house, from their drivers and internal amplifiers to their elegantly finished cabinets. This vertical integration enables Wharfedale to have complete design control over every aspect of every loudspeaker, and ensure unit-to-unit consistency. In addition, the company can manufacture superior-performance loudspeakers at attractive price points and employ materials and techniques that are unavailable to other companies.

The Wharfedale Ultra Power Cube UPC-10 and UPC-8 subwoofers will be available in the U.S. soon.

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GC Pro Works with D.A.S. Audio to Provide State-of-the-Art P.A. at Metro South Church in the Detroit Area

WESTLAKE VILLAGE, CA, September 18, 2012 — Guitar Center Professional (GC Pro), the outside sales division of Guitar Center that focuses on the needs of professional users, was recently contracted to design and install a new sound system at Metro South Church in the Detroit area. The church, a non-denominational Christian church located in the suburbs south of Detroit, is a growing and vibrant congregation that serves more than 1,500 people each weekend. Recognizing the importance of delivering their message in a clear and appealing manner, church management recently elected to install a robust sound reinforcement system. After careful evaluation, the decision was made to deploy a new loudspeaker setup drawn from the Aero Series 2 catalog of Valencia, Spain-based D.A.S. Audio.

GC Pro Account Manager Paul Johnson, working in conjunction with Guitar Center Sales Associate Paul Long and D.A.S. Audio Regional Sales Manager Steve Trimble, oversaw the project. Ultimately, the new sound system included a sizeable contingent of D.A.S. Aero 12A powered two-way, mid-high line array modules along with LX-215A and LX-218CA sub bass enclosures.

Johnson discussed the project: “Metro South Church is a very modern organization with a contemporary worship experience that really engages the congregation,” Johnson explained. “Music plays a vital role in their worship services because it’s a great way to be relevant to their congregants. They have a praise band—Alive—that reaches out to hundreds of high school students. The sanctuary is approximately 124 feet wide by 124 feet deep, has a 22 foot high ceiling, and seats roughly 850 people, so it’s not a small space. In order to deliver a high level of speech intelligibility and first-rate music reproduction capability, we determined that a line array system, augmented by multiple subwoofers, would be the most effective means of providing coverage. After coordinating three product demonstrations, the decision was made to go with the D.A.S. equipment.”

The house mains for Metro South Church’s new sound system consist of an LCR loudspeaker configuration. The system comprises fifteen D.A.S. Audio Aero 12A enclosures, with six elements each on the left and right hangs and a center fill cluster consisting of three modules. Low frequency support is provided by a combination of two D.A.S. LX-215A powered band-pass subwoofers and eight LX-218CA high performance powered subwoofers. “We stacked the subs on both sides of the stage, and this was done in a cardioid setup with some sub enclosures turned around in order to reduce standing bass on the stage,” Johnson said.

In discussing the challenges of the project, Johnson noted that D.A.S. Audio was competing against a number of prominent loudspeaker manufacturers and, that in the end, the decision came down to sound quality, design, and value. “Our client was looking for a system that delivered incredible sound and presented a clean, unobstructed view of the stage area so as not to be distracting. Given the self-powered nature of the D.A.S. system, we were able to accomplish this at a very competitive price point. By going with a self-powered system, we eliminated the requirement of having to house a rack of power amps, and since the power is integral to the enclosures, it’s optimized for each loudspeaker model. As a result, each of the three loudspeaker clusters was able to run on a single 15-amp circuit, making this a very efficient setup.”

With any project of this nature, quality customer and technical support services are critical and, in this regard, Johnson gives D.A.S. Audio high marks. “D.A.S. was very patient with what turned out to be a somewhat time-consuming project,” he said. “We actually started system demonstrations during the construction phase. In an unprecedented move, D.A.S. sent us the entire system and allowed us to keep it on site for three full demos during different stages of the build out. This was key to closing the sale. In the end, they flew in Ramon Franco, their systems specialist, and tuned the room so we could have the most accurate representation of the system. Both the client and all of us at GC Pro were very impressed.”

Johnson adds that, since being placed into service, the system has impressed the client: “Church management is very happy with the new system. Everyone we’ve spoken with believes they now have one of the best sounding worship services in southeastern Michigan. They are very proud of their new D.A.S. system. Equally important, D.A.S. has become a valued business partner. I expect to be working with D.A.S. for many jobs to come. It was an overall pleasure, and I’m glad to have had the experience.”

For more information, please visit www.gcpro.com.

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Auralex® Unveils Next-Generation SubDude-HT™ Subwoofer Isolator

— SubDude-HT™ decouples sub from floor, improving the low-end frequency response in critical listening applications —

Auralex® Acoustics, Inc., the world’s leading brand of acoustical treatments and soon to celebrate its 35th anniversary, is unveiling its next-generation SubDude system, the SubDude-HT™ Subwoofer Isolator. A larger lower-profile version of Auralex’s acclaimed SubDude, the SubDude-HT is a highly effective device that floats a subwoofer, yielding improved acoustical isolation.

Ideal for home theater installations, the new SubDude-HT is designed to work with most home theater subwoofers and features a three-quarter-inch velour-covered MDF with a one-inch base of Auralex Platfoam™ as an isolation boundary to decouple the subwoofer from the floor. This type of isolation allows the sound to emanate directly from the subwoofer, reducing coloration/”muddy” sound, thereby creating a clearer, more accurate low frequency response with diminished structural vibrations. The SubDude-HT measures 22″W x 17″D x 1.75″H.

For more information, please visit www.auralex.com.

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GC Pro Helps Hollywood’s Sonic Fuel Take Their New Facility to the Next Level

— New 7,000-square-foot studio includes a live room large enough for a 35-piece orchestra, an expansive control room, two iso booths, a machine room, a lounge and writing studios, with a wide complement of equipment sourced through GC Pro —

After years in which machine-made music tracks have seemed ubiquitous, live music is again making its presence felt in movies, TV and video games. The new production facility for Sonic Fuel, the 12-year-old music-for-picture studio in El Segundo, California, near Hollywood, was designed to leverage exactly that welcome trend. The new facility offered the perfect combination of high ceilings and a flexible space in which architect Frank Glynn, builder Brad Keeler and Sonic Fuel music engineer Jeff Vaughn collectively designed a live room large enough to comfortably hold a 35-piece orchestra, an expansive control room, two isolation booths, a machine room, a lounge and other spaces. And all of the new studio’s key rooms were equipped with technology and products sourced and sold by Guitar Center Professional (GC Pro), the outside sales division of Guitar Center that focuses on the needs of professional users.

“The television business has been using real musicians again; most television shows and every movie expects live music… and almost all video games are done with at least a decent sized orchestra,” observes Christopher Lennertz, who, with partner Timothy Michael Wynn, founded Sonic Fuel Studios in Marina del Rey a dozen years ago. As a result, for their new facility the partners wanted the space necessary to record large groups of live musicians and the technology they needed to give film, television and games the finished audio formats they demand, such as discrete 5.1 surround tracks and surround stems. “Almost every project we are involved with now — including video games, film and television — demands 5.1,” explains Lennertz. “Most of what we deliver is 5.1 stems now; for video games, we will deliver anywhere from 8 to 12, or sometimes 24 5.1 stems at the same time. So we had to go ahead and build a true 5.1 room.”

GC Pro was involved from the start and offered advice and resources unavailable from any other pro audio retailer. GC Pro Senior Account Manager Rich Avrach suggested a wide range of technology solutions to support the Euphonix System5 digital console that came from the previous facility, including two Avid Pro Tools HDX systems (with Avid 16×16 I/O), Avid SYNC HD, BAE 312A preamp, Apogee Symphony I/O, an Apogee Big Ben clocking system and an expanded microphone complement including two Neumann TLM 103s, two Neumann M 149s and four Neumann KM 184s.

“We have a longstanding relationship [with Sonic Fuel] that spans several years,” says Avrach, noting that a deep understanding of the client’s goals and vision resulted in technology choices that helped the project come together more efficiently. For instance, even though a digital console meant more flexibility, Lennertz and Wynn wanted to be sure they could have an authentic analog sound on the front end. So Avrach helped them warm up the input stage with several types of preamplifiers from brands including Neve, Millenia, API, Universal Audio and others.

Shortly after it opened, the new Sonic Fuel facility was put to the test for a strings and winds tracking sessions for the NBC pilot of Revolution, produced by J.J. Abrams (the mastermind behind Lost) for this year’s new NBC television season. The session was a total success and augured well for Sonic Fuel’s own future, and the owners are more than happy to acknowledge the part GC Pro played in making it happen. “They were actually part of the planning process,” Lennertz says. “They gave us all the support we needed with preamps, microphones and support and were never pushy. Plus they are very fast.” And in Hollywood, that really helps.

For more information, please visit www.gcpro.com.

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Lowell Expands Surge Suppression Offerings with New Models

— New rackmount panels and power strips offer cost-effective single- and dual-stage surge protection —

Lowell Manufacturing Company, a U.S. manufacturer of professional A/V Products currently celebrating its 65th anniversary, has expanded its range of surge suppression products with three new models: ACR-1509-S and ACR-1509-SD (rackmount panels) and ACS-1505-SW-SD (power strip). All three were developed to provide system integrators with high quality, cost-effective surge suppression solutions.

The ETL-listed ACR-1509-S and ACR-1509-SD are 1U 19-inch EIA rackmount panels with a total of nine 15A outlets (3 switched, 6 unswitched), front rocker switch, and nine-foot power cord with NEMA 5-15P plug. The ACR1509-S offers single-stage surge suppression, while the ACR-1509-SD offers dual-stage (redundant) protection. Both models are made in the USA with domestic and foreign parts.

The ACS-1505-SW-SD is a low-profile, 15A rackmount power strip that measures only 2 inches by 2 inches by 12 inches yet includes five single outlets (all switched) with spacing for external power supplies plus the new dual-stage surge suppression. ETL Listed in the US and Canada, this power strip includes a six-foot detachable power cord with molded plug and universal mounting brackets.

For more information, please visit www.lowellmfg.com or e-mail Lowell at sales@lowellmfg.com.

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Wharfedale Celebrates Its 80th Anniversary: a Historic Look Back

— Limited edition Denton Commemorative Loudspeaker unveiled to mark company’s anniversary —

Wharfedale is one of the founding companies of high fidelity, and in 2012, the company is celebrating its 80th anniversary as one of the most legendary marques in audio history. In addition to the year-long celebration, Wharfedale is commemorating this very special occasion by offering its limited-edition 80th Anniversary Denton loudspeaker, a two-way bookshelf speaker in the classic bookshelf tradition.

Founder Gilbert Briggs was driven by a lifelong love of music. He saved for three years to buy his first piano at age 18 and owned 40 pianos in his lifelong quest for ever-better performance. In 1932 Briggs built his very first loudspeaker in the basement of his home, located in the area known as Wharfedale. Encouraged by his initial success among radio enthusiasts for products such as the award-winning Bronze Wharfedale transducer, he set up a small factory near Bradford, England, in 1933.

By 1936 Wharfedale moved to a larger facility, and by 1945, the company developed one of the landmarks in audio reproduction – the world’s first two-way loudspeaker. By utilizing two drivers – woofer and tweeter – to handle bass/midrange and treble frequencies and optimizing each driver for its respective frequency range, a dramatic improvement in fidelity was achieved.

In 1948 Briggs established himself as an author and authority on high-fidelity with the publication of “Loudspeakers: The Why and How of Good Reproduction.” The pamphlet became extremely popular in the UK, the US and internationally, and through his lifetime Briggs continued to write and lecture about high fidelity.

In the 1950s Briggs staged an audacious series of worldwide concerts that compared live and recorded music in venues like Carnegie Hall and the Royal Festival Hall. A live orchestra would play a selection while being recorded. Next, the recording would be played back to the audience to enable them to experience live versus recorded music first-hand.

In 1958 Briggs sold Wharfedale to the Rank organization, a British entertainment company. This provided resources for continued growth and fueled technological improvements such as the first “roll surround” driver cone, and in 1962 the first-ever speakers to employ ceramic magnets. In the 1960s Wharfedale expanded into electronics, offering tuners, amplifiers and even turntables. During this period, as hi-fi components evolved from being hidden in furniture to becoming objects of desire to be showcased in the home, Wharfedale’s products evolved from their previous staid, traditional appearance to more contemporary styling and a greater variety of finishes and colors.

Wharfedale moved into a larger facility in 1967, and production growth continued through the 1970s with classic models like the Linton and the original Denton. The 1980s saw significant improvements in technologies for loudspeaker design and engineering, including laser holography and Wharfedale’s exclusive SCALP (Scanned Laser Probe) and FRESP (Frequency Slice Plot) techniques that enabled better understanding of loudspeaker behavior and the further advancement of the industry.

In 1981, Wharfedale introduced the first of what would become a landmark loudspeaker series – the original Wharfedale Diamond. The use of a smaller cabinet and light yet rigid driver material resulted in a speaker that delivered outstanding clarity and imaging and took listeners by storm. Never a company to rest on its laurels, Wharfedale subsequently introduced the Diamond II, and the series continues to this day with the acclaimed high-performance/high-value Diamond 10 lineup.

In the 1990s Wharfedale was sold to Verity Group PLC, the specialist company that at the time owned Quad and Leak and developed the revolutionary NXT loudspeaker transducer. In 1997 Verity decided to focus more exclusively on this technology and sold a number of its brands including Wharfedale, now an independent again. Wharfedale took the opportunity to expand into the professional audio market with its Wharfedale Pro division (now Wharfedale Systems and Professional).

Wharfedale became part of the International Audio Group (IAG) in the 2000s. IAG also owns Quad, Mission, Tag McLaren and other prestigious brands. In the 2010s Wharfedale is still one of the fastest growing audio companies in the world, expanding into new international markets and reaffirming its presence in the United States by appointing Canton, MA-based Sound Import LLC as its exclusive U.S. distributor. Under the direction of Vice President of Sales and Marketing Walter Schofield, formerly with Mark Levinson, and President Bob Springston, Wharfedale has continued to expand its presence stateside while providing the complete ultimate home entertainment experience.

In order to remain at the forefront of the industry, Wharfedale employs the most integrated and thorough manufacturing and quality control processes in the industry. The company has 1.5 million square feet of manufacturing space in which every single product and process takes place in-house. This vertical integration enables Wharfedale to have complete design control over every aspect of every loudspeaker. The company can manufacture superior-performance loudspeakers at attractive price points and employ materials and techniques that are unavailable to other manufacturers.

In celebration of its 80th anniversary in 2012, Wharfedale has created its limited edition Denton loudspeaker, a two-way bookshelf model that is beautifully crafted in Vintage Mahogany. Though classic in appearance, the Denton features up-to-the-minute technologies including a woven-Kevlar-cone woofer with a die-cast frame, a woven-textile-dome tweeter and a crossover designed for maximum sonic purity and a seamless blend between the two drivers. The Denton conveys music with a rich, natural quality; exceptional detail, clarity and imaging; and an open, inviting sound. The Wharfedale Denton is available at a suggested retail price of $1,000 per pair.)

Wharfedale remains committed to the values set forth by founder Gilbert Briggs, staying true to the pursuit of the superior quality and value that has made Wharfedale one of the most revered names in audio for 80 years.

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