March 27, 2013 by Arlen Schweiger
In-ceiling loudspeakers are becoming more and more pleasing to both the eyes and ears.
Now, from the aesthetic point of view, companies are offering in-ceiling models that are barely noticeable—after all, the point of architectural speakers is that you don’t really want them to be seen, only heard. Toward that end, the new Helos 12 and Helos 22 in-ceiling speakers from MartinLogan are not completely invisible (some in-ceilings can be painted over so they really just look like part of the ceiling finish) but they feature a sleek bezel-less design to help them look pretty stealthy.
But don’t let the looks fool you. Under the frame-less grilles is a wealth of technology that includes MartinLogan’s proprietary Vojtko crossovers for what the company says helps produce low distortion and seamless driver integration. It’s used in the company’s vaunted and beautiful electrostatic freestanding loudspeakers for which MartinLogan is renowned.
These additions replace the Helos 10 and Helos 20 models, and have the same neodymium soft-dome tweeters and high-rigidity aluminum cone woofers, the company says. The Helos 12 includes a single 1-inch pivoting tweeter that can be aimed toward the listening destination for improved performance, while the Helos 22 serves up single-point stereo sound with a pair of 3/4-inch tweeters.
MartinLogan says both models include one 6.5-inch midrange/bass cone with extended throw driver assembly and thermal protection.
On the outside, the company says the ultra-low-profile grilles for the Helos 12 and Helos 22 can also be painted for near-invisible blending into the ceiling, while a magnetic system secures them easily into place.
Check with your local authorized MartinLogan dealer for availability; the Helos 12 run $299 each and the Helos 22 are $399 apiece.
Related: 5 Ways Architects and Interior Designers Need to Pay Attention
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Arlen writes about home technology installations and product news and reviews for electronichouse.com
and Electronic House magazine.
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