March 30, 2005 If the aesthetic qualities of a speaker were more important than sound, the Japanese-made Solid Acoustics SIKKIM would be one of the most sought after speaker systems in the world. As it is, they sell for US$3150 a pair (including a sound equalizer, tabletop stand, and cables), so they’ll never set sales records but they are extraordinary to look at and unique in many ways. Each dodecahedron (12 sided) Sikkim speaker is created by casting aluminium and then mounting an extremely high quality 5cm speaker on each face. This enables the Sikkims to radiate sound through a full 360 degrees and produce “room-filling sound” that emanates from a single point.
As each speaker within the 100w Sikkim has an opposing twin on the same axis, the units also have very low vibration, making them ideal for apartments with paper-thin walls and floors. Similarly, because the units radiate sound, they make good use of acoustically imperfect locations and give a much better result than traditional speaker systems.
Though they are visually very different to other speaker systems, there are other differences too – although the Sikkim’s sell as a pair, it’s also possible to buy the 300w SA-355i which sells as a single unit and delivers a “clear, stable and rich sound.”
Even as you walk closer to a SA-355i speaker, the sound does not get too loud for comfortable listening. At the same time, you can receive a surprisingly good amount of sound in remote areas of the room. The SA-355i is an ideal speaker for not only home audio and home theater but also commercial and hi-fidelity-oriented facilities such as restaurants, beauty salons and conference/presentation rooms.
Audio professionals will be able to maximize their omni-directional sound applications and reduce the number of speakers required for their installations, leading to lower installation and maintenance costs. There’s also a 755 professional unit rated at 480 watts.
The company's lead product is the SA-355i, and next month a waterproof version of the 355 will become available for garden and outdoor settings.
Solid Acoustics is intending to begin international distribution this year and is seeking international distributors.