13 Famous Speaker Brands - Part Three - United States
Today we'll discuss five American speaker brand in part three of our three-part series of famous speaker brands. We'll briefly discuss the history and key achievements of these legendary companies. American speaker companies exhibit a large dynamic range and performance that is finely tuned for home cinema and major Hollywood movies.
JBL was founded by James B Lansing in 1946. In the speaker world, when someone says “American sound” JBL is the first brand that comes to mind for many. With over 70 years of industry leading experience, JBL is one of those brands that even those that are not “stereo heads” can recognize. JBL covers both home audio and professional audio speakers with a rugged, robust, and durable style. They are consistent with a very dynamic sound performance especially in the low frequency spectrum. JBL loudspeakers have a high load power, high sensitivity, a good frequency response and excellent transient characteristics. JBL’s SR47 Series and European 48 Series are industry standard loudspeakers. On the home theater side, the Northridge E series, N series, and S series were of exceptional quality for the common home theater enthusiast.
Paul W. Klipsch founded Klipsch & associates with his hand built Klipschorn with the goal of bringing live music into his living room. His many patents including the Klipschorn helped shape the direction and sound replication in speaker design for many years to come. In fact, the Klipschorn is one of the only speaker models to be in consistent production for over 60 years and is still considered to be one of the best speakers in the world. From it’s humble beginnings in a tin shed in Hope Arkansas, Paul W. Klipsch set a standard in sound replication and pushed speaker design and acoustics to a level still held in high regard to this day.
In 1964, Dr. Amar Bose of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology founded BOSE. Bose products cover home audio, professional audio, car audio as well as noise elimination products. Bose research and development continues to make great achievements in the audio world. In order to improve and modify the radiation characteristics of loudspeakers, Bose developed a speaker box that actively utilized the reflected sound in audible environments to improve and modify the radiation characteristics. Bose is probably most famous for its 901 loudspeakers. The doctor spent 12 years developing this direct reflection loudspeaker and has become one of the best-known flagship speakers from Bose. The legendary Bose 901s do not come at a small price, but they bring the emotional experience of live music right into your living room. Bose developed the world’s smallest set of “lifestyle” speakers in 1995 bringing their name to other parts of the home besides the living room. These small speakers contained a special formula diaphragm material and neodymium magnet systems to bring huge sound in a small package, making them perfect for kitchens, offices, or anywhere lacking space for a traditional stereo. In addition, Bose created the lifestyle 35 series which is an intelligent home theater system capable of calibrating itself to the dimensions and type of room, making set up and installation easy and incredible even for the beginner. Each speaker automatically tunes the sound to perform best in the room it is in, making it ideal for irregular room designs.
Infinity started as a casual conversation between three audio enthusiasts, Cary Christie, Arnold Nuclell and Jack Ulrick who met to talk about the idea of INFINITY. A short time later they produced their product with a little expertise from the aerospace industry. INFINITY’s first product named the Servo Static I consisted of two tweeter arrays containing seven ribbon tweeters, Eight ribbon midrange drivers, two paper cone drivers and an ultra-bass woofer. This design pioneered the “multi-head” array design in loudspeakers. The Kappa Series was born in the mid 80’s as a high-end consumer driven audio system. The fifth generation of the Kappa series including the 400 and 600 floor boxes, Kappa 200 bookshelf speakers, the Kappa Center Channel and the Kappa active subwoofer launched shortly after 2000 with new technologies to meet the playback requirements of DVD and SACD
In 1998 our family boom box sputtered its last sound and died. After the memorial service, I suggested to my wife we splurge and buy a full stereo system. With her blessing, and a snug budget of $1,500, the shopping began.
Little did I know I was going to step into a kind of hell on earth I didn’t know existed. So many speaker choices, dozens of them, and all displayed in an acoustically engineered showroom that didn’t begin to resemble my family room. Then there was the sales shpiel, droned by a commissioned salesman I was sure had just been lifted out of a car seat, and who flat lined every time I asked a tough question. But it was the markup that made me swallow my tongue. I used to build speakers in high school. I knew what the parts cost, and I knew if I paid the retail price, I would essentially be buying the distribution channel, not the speakers themselves.
Then the light went on, not so much like a revelation, but more like a logical epiphany to a really screwy situation. I thought, “I’ll build the speakers myself. ”But the big epiphany, the kahuna of epiphanies, the one for which I am forever grateful, came a few weeks later, incited by a guy in Mexico I was talking to about the sonic capacity of Peruvian hardwood. He asked, “Are you going to make a business out of building speakers?” And while the prospect of doing so had never occurred to me, what leaped out of my mouth was “Yes.”
With that "yes," the vision to build remarkable sounding speakers at a remarkably low price was instantaneously born. Of course, it was a no-brainer that the prime way to do this was to sell direct to the customer online. Cut out the middleman, the distribution channel, all the bureaucracy that sucks a budget dry, then pour that cash into developing and manufacturing kick ass speakers. The boon to the customer? Extraordinary speakers at half the price of retail.
So, what started at a budget of $1,500 in 1998 turned into a million dollars in capital within months. And while my wife and I put off buying the speaker system of our dreams, within time we finally got it. It’s called the Aperion Audio Intimus 5.1 System. The best thing about this story? This is only the beginning.
The first speaker brand to sell directly on the Internet. By purchasing directly from Aperion Audio you skip paying the retail markup tax and bypass typical sales mumbo jumbo. You simply get more speaker for your dollar from us because we design, manufacture and sell directly to you. Genuine & Unmatched Aperion Sound, you get custom engineered sound with amazing support, period. The only way to truly audition speakers is in your own home. You get 60 days of pure sound experimentation. Lifetime Customer Phone Support. Up to 10 Year Transferable Warranty. Online Support & Training.
We hope you gained a little knowledge and background on your favorite American and International speaker brands! Be sure to check out our other articles on how to's, audio insights, and other sound related topics!