Moving Speakers for Motion Pictures
The most moving announcement involved a completely new line of in-ceiling speakers called the "TIME" series. An acronym for "Theater In Motion Experience", TIME series speakers mount flush in the ceiling, politely and unobtrusively minding their own business out of the way above your head. When activated by the TIME Command Unit (TCU), the TIME speakers come alive in a cool sort of way that any animatronics fan would drool over (or, in this case, under).
At the TCU's signal, the speakers automatically descend and point into the room below at an angle of 15, 30, or 45 degrees. The TCU can also be programmed to rotate the speakers to any position necessary to create the best soundstage for individual listening modes or applications. SpeakerCraft says the TIME series speakers have multiple presets and are infinitely adjustable across the soundstage.
The round in-ceiling TIME speakers incorporate polypropylene, aluminum, and Kevlar drivers with eight-inch woofers and one-inch concentrically mounted tweeters - component parts identical to those used in the company's AIM 8 speaker models in which the entire speaker assembly manually pivots within the mounting bezel. The new TIME speakers add motor and drive assemblies that make automation possible.
The component-size TCU lives quietly amongst the rest of the gear in your system. It provides low voltage power and data streams to the speakers' automation hardware. Because they wanted one more acronym to include, the system comes with a dedicated remote control fondly known as the TCR. The remote is used to adjust speaker angles and rotation as well as to create multiple preset position configurations. SpeakerCraft says the presets "allow the installer and the end-user to address multiple seating locations and party modes as well as different music and theater preferences." The TCR's commands can be taught to any learning remote control or programmed into most control systems such as those from Crestron, AMX, or Control4 (and more, of course).
SpeakerCraft will offer the TIME speakers for sale individually at $350 (Model One), $550 (Model Two), and $750 (Model Three) each. The TIME Command Unit and TCR remote - capable of controlling up to eight speakers in one system - will be available as a package for $250.
In another bit of in-ceiling speaker news, SpeakerCraft is replacing their CRS6 speaker line - said by the company to be "the best selling speaker line in the industry" - with a new series called AIM 7. The new speakers will use seven-inch woofers (instead of the CRS6's six-inch drivers) with an independently pivoting one-inch dome tweeter concentrically mounted in a fully pivoting baffle similar to that used in the AIM 8 series.
Even with the larger woofers, the AIM 7 speakers will still fit in the same cut-out required for the original six-inch speakers. The four new AIM 7 series models will also cost the same as the ones they are replacing with prices ranging from $425 to $925 per pair.