Speakers have long battled with the issue of just how they can fit into the atmosphere of a room without calling too much attention to themselves, or clashing with the interior style. The loudest, most capable audio gadgets are often too big, while the smaller ones that can be hidden more easily tend to carry less “oomph.”
People People, a Sweden-based design company, aimed to solve this problem when it created the Transparent Speaker. The speaker is essentially a transparent glass box, which surprisingly shows very little of the inner workings of its system. The circular black drivers - one 6.5 inch subwoofer and two smaller three inch ones - are arranged in an interesting layout with silver bolts as accents and red and black wires trailing between them as an unobtrusive connection.
Users can adjust the volume, bass and treble by turning inconspicuous knobs located on a rectangular, black and aluminum control panel. The overall size of the device has not been officially released anywhere, but at a guess it measures at one and a half feet by one and one fifth feet, so it fits well into the space of a room, regardless of the size.
Additionally, the speaker can be connected to a powered USB socket, so it can play music wirelessly (via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi), which adds to the simple, minimalist design of the unit.
Another admittedly awesome feature of the Transparent Speaker is the ability to design your own --People People will send the customer all the components of the speaker, and the user can then build the speaker themselves. Be warned, however--the glass panels can only be purchased locally, although People People will assist the buyer in finding and purchasing the panels nearest the user’s home.
The idea for the Transparent Speaker was actually put forth on KickStarter, the community-funded website for innovative projects and startups, and the donation date officially ends January 27. As of now, the company’s goal of $120,000 has not been met, although they are very close. People People has thirty days to reach higher than its current yield of $101,445. In short, the idea is a popular one, and it seems to fulfill exactly what consumers want out of a speaker.
People People’s Kickstarter page puts it best, saying “In conclusion, the Transparent Speaker chooses to sound fast, rhythmical and articulate, rather than absolutely smooth, rich and refined, but that is when comparing with standalone speakers, in the context of speaker docks which are usually not smooth and refined anyway, having a tight grip on musical flow, and is a great and appreciated feature which makes it an interesting proposition for more discerning listeners, interested in a docking solution like this.”
Judging by the 289 backers as of now, there are many discerning listeners out there who will buy this unique speaker when it hits the market.
Edited by Amanda Ciccatelli