Think of the name Orbitsound and you'll probably think of cheap and cheerful soundbars. But the company's latest product is an altogether different beast – the Orbitsound Air D1 is a one-box £12,000 (around $15,000 / AU$22,000) speaker aimed at the luxury end of the market.
Citing Dire Straits' Mark Knopfler as a fan, the Orbitsound Air D1 is built with the company's Airsound technology to deliver a stereo sweetspot wherever you are in a room.
This is despite being a single-unit active speaker, rather than having two channels that can be discretely positioned.
The proprietary technology is helped along by the Air D1's speaker configuration – not only do you have speakers on the front of the box (with each driver having its own analogue amp), but also to the sides.
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It leads to an unusual design for the Air D1 – a large tower-like box, but one that can also pivot on a stand bracket from which it is suspended to further improve the sense of a stereo image for different areas of a room.
It's also using an engineering technique called transconductance, which sees the speaker's performance monitored at all times, with the amplifier's output corrected based on that reading to counteract distortion in the signal.
As for inputs and connectivity, the Air D1 offers up Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, one optical connection and a trio of aux inputs. It's also got an Ethernet port if your wireless connection isn't up to scratch.
At present, the speaker is exclusively available through Harrods in the UK, at a price of £12,000. But Orbitsound is in talks with global retailers too at the moment, so expect that to widen internationally in due course.
The Air D1 represents a departure for Orbitsound, an entrance into a new world of luxury audio. While it may not spell the end for its budget-orientated speaker systems, there's also the suggestion that the company could be partnering with OEMs, including within the automotive industry, to bring its patented brand of stereo to a wider audience. Watch this space.
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