Concrete speakers sound like a strange idea
By Pawel Piejko
July 12, 2011
We've seen a number of unusual speakers before, such as the Whamodyne glass speakers or Solid Acoustics' dodecahedron speakers, but concrete speakers are definitely something new. It's definitely not a very popular material for audio systems, but Israeli designer Shmuel Linski would like to change that with his "Exposed" concrete speakers, each of which weighs 123 pounds (56 kg). They're just one part of his line of unusual creations, that include a concrete coffee maker and a concrete canoe.
Most speaker casings are made of solid wood or MDF (medium-density fiberboard), while the cheaper models utilize plastic, but non-resonating concrete doesn't seem to be the right material for transmitting sound. "When concrete meets sound, it might distort the sound because the concrete is very stiff," Linski explains. "The speakers might therefore sound strange." Why make loudspeakers that sound strange? The designer gives a rather unclear explanation, saying that the Exposed speakers are capable of "invoking a sense of nirvana for concrete lovers and audiophiles."
To design the speakers, Shmuel used horn loudspeaker technology. The driver, located at the top of the speaker, is linked through a 96 cm (38 in)-long externally-lined pipe, with a large horn-shaped bass port at the bottom resembling a megaphone.
The concrete speakers are Linski's graduation project at Shenkar College of Engineering and Design in Ramat Gan, Israel. There's no word on any possible commercialization of the product.
His other concrete projects are also unusual. The "espresso solo" is an espresso-making machine in a concrete casing, and the Orca concrete canoe was made for a concrete canoe-building competition held last year in Israel.
More information about Shmuel Linski can be found on his personal website.