This portable home speaker is a sculptural design that rocks a very Dyson-like aesthetic!

Reminiscent of a Dyson fan, Stelae is a portable home speaker designed to deliver quality audio through a technical build that could be mistaken for a piece of sculptural artwork on your coffee table.

Home speakers have a reputation for looking too high-tech to fit into modern living rooms. When placed beside gleaming photo frames and metallic light fixtures, the wires and bulky build of speakers take away from an otherwise clean, minimal interior design. Merging an abstract sculptural look with a metallic chrome finish, Stalae is a portable home speaker designed by Lucis Ceng to bring the subtle taste of sculptural work to electronic design.

While Stelae’s physical build is reminiscent of a Dyson fan’s, the inspiration for Stelae’s distinct form stems from sculpture work. Standing out from other home entertainment systems, Stelae’s speaker plumes from its circular base into the shape of a feather for a slim design that doesn’t take up too much room on the coffee table. The long tube-like portion of Stelae is also lined with four woofers.

Portable by design, Stelae comes with a wire for at-home charging but can also be run on its charged battery for wireless listening. The vertical control panel of Stelae is located at the top of the speaker, equipped with volume and play buttons, users can also connect to Bluetooth and turn the speaker on and off from the control panel. Along the outer edges of Stelae’s circular base, users can find the speaker’s USB type-c ports to connect their own smartphones and control the music from there.

While speakers are generally seen as bulky electronic hardware, Stelae looks to sculpture work to solidify itself as a statement interior design product, seamlessly blending in with other artwork around the house. Since Stelae is also portable, the artful design can be taken anywhere – from the beach to the streets.

Designer: Lucis Ceng

Inspired by sculptural artwork, Stelae has an appealing and distinct design.

The transparent tube-like portion of Stelae houses the speaker’s woofers.

Finished in chrome, Stelae merges sculptural artwork with electronic tech design. 

This DIY Bluetooth Radio comes with every part you’ll need to build your very own speaker–from the bass up!

The R3 DIY Bluetooth Radio from Celia & Perah audio engineering company allows users to build their own speakers and learn about the magic behind its superb sound quality.

Choosing the right Bluetooth speaker often boils down to the technical details. Once we find a couple of speakers we like, technical details like sound quality, acoustics, and pressure become the ultimate deciding factors. However, knowing which technical details to look out for takes a lot of research. As much as we enjoy listening to music, understanding the technology behind it sometimes gets lost. That’s why Celia & Perah, a quality audio engineering company, launched R3, a Bluetooth speaker that users can build themselves to learn more about the ins and outs of audio engineering.

For Celia & Perah, weaving in the DIY aspect of R3 provided the speaker with a bit more meaning. When someone buys an R3 Bluetooth Speaker, they’re also buying the experience of building their own music-making device and learning more about “the acoustic magic behind the [speaker’s] superb sound quality,” as Celia & Perah put it. R3 is a DIY Bluetooth speaker that can be built within an hour and customized to fit your taste. Users can even spraypaint it a certain color to match the tone of any given room.

Equipped with a 3.5mm Aux jack and USB drive, the R3 DIY Bluetooth Speaker allows users to play music via Bluetooth, the radio, or an aux connection. Offering surround sound that rivals that of a concert, Celia & Perah took two years to fine-tune R3’s sound quality to cut out any potential feedback or distortion. Utilizing the energy-efficient 30W Class-D Amplifier for optimal audio quality, its lower power dissipation produces less heat and saves up space on the circuit board.

When users buy the R3 Speaker, they’ll receive a pack of wooden boards, two two-inch 48mm 8W full-range drivers, a 16W RMS amplifier, an FM/volume knob, a function knob, a PCBA, and accessory essentials like connecting cables and wool felt covering. Along with the packaged items, users will receive assembly instructions that bring them through the entire building process. Each speaker comes with a speaker range of 68~20,000 Hz and 8 hours of battery life to ensure quality sound day-in, day-out. The 4.0 EDR+ Bluetooth has a transmit range of ten meters, so you can bring R3 to the beach or to a party and not worry about stopping the music or the party.

Designer: Celia & Perah

In the age of DIY, the R3 Bluetooth Radio is right at home. 

The wooden panels of the R3 DIY Bluetooth Radio can be spraypainted to meet the taste of any room.

The R3 DIY Bluetooth Radio can be customized in black for a more refined look. 

Users build every part of their R3 DIY Bluetooth Radio, from the bass up.

The post This DIY Bluetooth Radio comes with every part you’ll need to build your very own speaker–from the bass up! first appeared on Yanko Design.

The biggest problem with smart-speakers is that they’re voices without faces – LAYER’s Capsula Mini fixes that

Filling a rather strangely-ignored UX gap with the smart-speaker market, LAYER Design’s smart-speaker for Russia-based Mail.ru comes with its own expressive little face that reacts as it listens and speaks. Titled the Capsula Mini, the smart speaker runs Mail.ru’s native voice AI – Marusya, while assuming the friendly avatar of a little AI butler that’s ready to answer all your requests.

The speaker takes on the familiar puck-like shape seen with other mini smart-speakers like the Amazon Echo Dot or the Apple HomePod Mini. It sports a fabric clad around the sides where you’d expect the speakers to fire audio out of, and a set of LED eyes shine right through the fabric. The speaker uses a seven-segment LED display for each eye (and a single dot for the nose), allowing it to express emotions like happiness, sadness, nonchalance, and surprise, while also doubling as a clock that displays the time. A touch-sensitive surface on the top lets you physically interact with the Capsula Mini, while an LED ring underneath its touch panel lights up when the speaker’s active (and turns to red when there’s an error).

The voice and touch-activated speaker hopes to do something rather new by associating a face with the speaker’s voice. Given how our visual sense plays such a dominant role in our perception of everything from events to emotions, it makes sense, being able to associate a face with the voice – after all, video chats are so much better than audio calls, no? Capsula Mini’s eyes and nose also pull off the ‘serious’ veneer associated with gadgets that end up scaring people who are tech-phobic or don’t know how to use certain tech appliances – like children or the elderly. The fact that Capsula Mini has a face and a voice anthropomorphizes it, making it much more approachable, especially to people who aren’t tech-savvy.

The smart-speaker will be available to Russian users in two color variants – ‘Dove Grey’ and ‘Charcoal’, with more colors in the future.

Designer: LAYER Design for Mail.ru

Click below to read more!

How Michelangelo’s Statue of David helped inspire one of the most beautiful, home-friendly speaker designs ever

Torso Speaker inspired by Michelangelo Statue of David

The fact that fabric is now considered an industrial design material can be directly attributed to Google. When the company first designed smart speakers for homes, it deliberately looked to interior decor for inspiration. In came soft forms, fabric clads, leather trims, and home-friendly color palettes. Google’s smart home products played a pivotal role in reinventing how home appliances are designed to fit into their domestic surroundings rather than look like gadgets, and it’s something the Torso Speaker embraces so incredibly well with its statuesque design that draws inspiration from marble sculptures from the Greco-Roman times. The speaker’s bust-shape is a rather literal interpretation of turning gadgets into home-friendly decor, but there’s something immensely poetic about how it draws a balance between the two! By drawing from the beauty and perfection of marble sculptures, the speaker echoes those very attributes too – elegance, beauty, perfection.

Torso Speaker inspired by Michelangelo Statue of David

What the Torso does is quite literally show us that we’re in a Renaissance period of smart home-appliance design. Speakers are being made to blend into surroundings, with them sometimes looking like lamps, furniture, or even as IKEA’s demonstrated, photo-frames. Designer Yang Dong Wook created the Torso speaker in the image of Michelangelo’s bust of David, bringing its nuanced classical qualities into product design. Created as a part of Samsung’s Design Membership Program, the Torso speaker explores the relationship between interiors and gadgets (sort of the same way Samsung’s Serif TV did). The speaker looks remarkably like an abstract bust you’d proudly place on your mantelpiece, displaying for all your guests to see. It adopts the same shapes, contours, and tilts as the Bust of David, with the slanted shoulders and the slightly angled head, resulting in an incredibly expressive form.

Torso Speaker inspired by Michelangelo Statue of David

Torso Speaker inspired by Michelangelo Statue of David

The speaker’s built to scale and serves a highly elevated decorative purpose in its surroundings. Its neck acts as a vessel, allowing you to use the speaker as a vase or a place to hang your ornaments, and that gray finish gives it a pristine marble-like appearance too.

Torso Speaker inspired by Michelangelo Statue of David

Torso Speaker inspired by Michelangelo Statue of David

While the upper part of the Torso serves as a vase-like container, its collar area comes outfitted with the speakers, sitting under a fabric clad. The speakers fire forwards (because of how the Torso has a very definite front profile), while passive radiator channels in the bottom create a reverberating bass.

Torso Speaker inspired by Michelangelo Statue of David

Torso Speaker inspired by Michelangelo Statue of David

The controls for the speaker are located on the shoulder of the bust. A power button on the left lets you switch the Torso on or off, and a Bluetooth button on the right lets you connect a device. The shoulder-bridge sports a touch-sensitive volume slider, so increasing or decreasing the volume becomes an incredibly interactive, almost sensual experience, as you drag your fingertip down the Torso’s shoulder. Talk about a product having sex appeal!!

Torso Speaker inspired by Michelangelo Statue of David

Torso Speaker inspired by Michelangelo Statue of David

The Torso speaker does a few things pretty adeptly. For designers and companies, it shows how inspiration can be found practically anywhere. For a consumer, it unlocks an absolutely new category of products that redefine tech and home decor completely, combining the timeless beauty of Greco-Roman sculptures with a contemporary, functional product… but most importantly, for the vast design movement, it shows how a design can have a timeless quality to it, by borrowing from something that’s truly iconic, classical, and evergreen in its allure!

Designer: Yang Dong Wook

Torso Speaker inspired by Michelangelo Statue of David

This Movie Theater Seat has its own built-in surround-sound system for a truly immersive experience





The FLEXSOUND Pulse generates its own immersive ‘bubble’ of full-range audio around the person sitting in it. Its makers designed it to be the cinema seat of the future, but they see it being used in gaming, live performances, and even at home.

The terms ‘immersive’ and ‘loud’ aren’t necessarily interchangeable… that’s a distinction that the FLEXSOUND Pulse focuses on. It replaces the need for those loud 5.1 surround sound systems by putting the speakers right into their futuristic movie-theater seats, so you don’t just listen to the audio, you FEEL it too.

Flexsound Pulse - The first fully loudspeaker-free cinema sound system

The FLEXSOUND Pulse is an almost cabin-esque seat that envelops you in your personal “soundsphere.” The Pulse comes with carefully-positioned full-range audio systems built right into the seat, giving you an experience that blurs the lines between auditory and tactile. Just how your heart thumps to music at a concert, the chair’s audio systems immerse your ears and body in sound and vibrations without necessarily being loud. Moreover, the chair’s felt-lined walls along the side help contain the sound within the space inside the seat, resulting in minimal sound leakage. This means your audio experience exists within the confines of your chair, so your family and neighbors don’t get disturbed while you’re watching a Michael Bay film or an exceptionally rowdy football match. Sadly though, it also means you can’t really talk to people beside you or efficiently pass the popcorn around (although that might just be a good thing).

Flexsound Pulse - The first fully loudspeaker-free cinema sound system

The chairs are designed to wirelessly receive sound, and can be arranged in a variety of numbers and orientations for smaller private cinemas as well as larger public movie theaters… and just in case you’re wondering, yes, they could potentially be used at home too, along with your TV or your gaming rig. Or better still, just pop on a VR headset and enter perhaps the most immersive movie-watching experience known to humankind.

Designer: FLEXSOUND

Flexsound Pulse - The first fully loudspeaker-free cinema sound system

Flexsound Pulse - The first fully loudspeaker-free cinema sound system

This smart assistant with a microphone is here to be an assistant content creator while you multitask!

A personal assistant is one gadget that has the potential to change life on an everyday scale. Right from giving you the information you asked for, playing music when you’re feeling blue, turning on the lights to a specific hue in your living room, or doing some 50 random tasks you have in a day! Meet Miko, the portable smart assistant that does more than its intended function. Created by industrial designer Vandana Bhanushali, the smart device doubles as a microphone for content creation!

Miko has cardioid microphones to pick up the voice in real-time and amplifies the sound. This means we can use the cheeky little gadget for anything from small rallies, office meetings, live performances to even karaoke nights with buddies. Don’t mistake Miko for any ordinary mic, as it can address a room filled with 60 people in crystal clear vocals or audio. Even better, the gadget can be used in one of the two modes – either as a handheld mic or as a detachable lavalier clip mic. There’s a pin on the base mic that keeps it charged, and this base mic is further amped via the main dock. So as soon as we pick up the mic from the dock, it sets into action the voice amplification. This function makes the little gadget perfect for podcast creators or video content makers. Plus, the attractive design is well thought out to appeal to the next-gen crowd.

When you don’t require the mic or amplification, the cute little speaker turns to the task of being a smart assistant. For sure, this gadget is something unique amongst the very predictable products out there. However, Miko has the potential to get past the concept stage, and content creators will already be eying this gadget with keenness.

Designer: Vandana Bhanushali

DIY Speaker with Ferrofluid Display: Lava Amp

YouTuber Dakd Jung recently shared a montage of them making a Bluetooth speaker with a one-of-a-kind visualizer. In front of the speaker is a small glass case with a bit of ferrofluid in it. Inside the speaker is a device that converts part of the sound signal into electromagnetic signals, causing the blob to react to the sound in real-time. Skip to 2:02 in the video to check out the device in action.

It may sound straightforward, but Dakd says a big challenge of his device is that ferrofluid normally sticks to the glass. Dakd had to coat the inside of the case with “special treatment” to allow the ferrofluid to float.

It seems like the ferrofluid can react only to one frequency at a time, and violently at that. But for a one-man passion project, it’s still very well made.

[via The Verge]

 

An Ex-Apple designer created this ornamental, almost alien-like Triphonic speaker

After over 20 years of working at the world’s most valuable tech company and being one of the core members of Jony Ive’s design team, Cristopher Stringer is unveiling the Cell Alpha, a high-end AirPlay 2 compatible speaker from his company Syng. The Cell Alpha is a rather absurdly beautiful-looking speaker that packs an absolute punch for its size. Think of it as a combination of cutting-edge technology and a culmination of years worth of effort at Apple to reinvent the music industry, from the iPod and iTunes to the demise of the 3.5mm jack and the birth of the podcast movement. Stinger’s been at the very epicenter of all these movements, giving his company Syng immense credibility. The Cell Alpha from Syng is an alien-ish UFO-like speaker that sits either on a table or off the floor using a stand. Designed to be the world’s first Triphonic speaker, it doesn’t just make you hear audio, it makes you feel it too.

There’s something about the Cell Alpha speaker that reminds me of the Devialet Phantom. There’s often this notion that speakers need to look a certain way, with their diaphragms facing you as they pump out audio. Well, the world’s first Triphonic speaker has its own unique mechanisms. Two forced balanced subwoofers sit on the upper and lower sides of the spherical speaker, pumping rich bass upwards and downwards to fill the room. Between them sits the Cell Alpha’s pièce de résistance, its triphone, a three-horn system that projects sound with absolute accuracy. Place it in any part of the room and the Cell Alpha fills the space with audio. It doesn’t have a front or back, which means your room gets washed with 360° waves of high fidelity sound, and the minute you introduce a second or a third Cell Alpha speaker into the mix, it gives you complete spatial control and total envelopment in crystal clear audio.

It’s not too difficult to tell that the Cell Alpha is the result of over 20 years worth of design at Apple. There’s a slight similarity in its design language to the Harman Kardon Aura which Jony Ive designed too, and the idea of a transparent plastic shell encasing an inner complicated architecture is something the iMac G3 did beautifully. Stringer left Apple in 2017, which means he also worked on the HomePod too. There’s an elegance and mystique about the Cell Alpha that’s absolutely magnetic, and it does reflect exactly how much of a handshake Syng’s design and engineering teams have.

The Cell Alpha isn’t your average speaker, though. It sports a whopping price tag of $1,799 with a table stand and $1,969 with a floor stand. The speaker works with the Syng app that, beyond allowing you to play music from your favorite streaming services, also lets you control your sound field, shape your sound, and operate and control multiple Cell Alpha speakers throughout your home with Multi-Space playback.

Designer: Cristopher Stringer (Syng)

This side table is also a powerful 200W high-definition sound system!





It may look like a demure little table for your coffee cups and magazines, but the Cube was designed to pack a punch. Sitting within its spectacular hand-crafted wooden frame is an incredibly powerful 200W speaker system comprising two full-range speakers and a massive double bass reflex woofer with dual aluminum vents. That’s audiophile-speak for “This table knows how to drop the bass”.

Ultimately the Cube is a uniquely expressive piece of furniture that’s more than just a surface for resting your cups. Combining patented audio-technologies into one award-winning piece of furniture, the Cube surprises with how good it sounds for a device that small. Moreover, it eliminates the need for you to even own a separate speaker set because your furniture IS your speaker set. Considering how the Cube could be used by regular people as well as audio-enthusiasts, it comes outfitted to connect to a variety of devices. It has built-in Bluetooth, which means you can hook your phone, tablet, or even laptop to it, while the option of analog RCA connectivity, digital optical input toslink (DAC 24-bit 192Khz), and a 3.5mm input means the Cube could be hooked to a host of external devices like your television or even vinyl player. The Cube’s upper surface is perfect for resting your phone, placing a mini bonsai planter, or just stashing magazines. If you want to use it as a table to keep your coffee, you’d best use a stable cup and a coaster, because the Cube’s control panel sits on the top too, allowing you to play with the volume, bass, and treble. There’s even a shelf below the audio unit, for storing larger piles of magazines and books.

Each Cube comes meticulously hand-crafted in the Spanish and French Basque Country regions, close to La Boite’s company headquarters. Although they come outfitted with spectacular sound-systems, the Cube’s primary role really is to look like high-end furniture too… to that end, the Cube table features a variety of styles including dark and light wood while also using materials like leather trims, metal accents, and even a variant with a Corian counter-top for that faux-marble effect. Given how exquisitely they’re built, the Cube doesn’t come cheap. Each unit retails for €1290 ($1531), and the company goes as far as to offer free shipping in France and the rest of the EU as well as an international 3-year warranty on the entire unit.

Designer: Samuel Accoceberry for La Boite

IKEA x Sonos latest collaboration promises a budgeted, high-quality speaker disguised as a wall art!

I’m not a fan of traditional music systems. Yes, I’ve put it out there! Don’t get me wrong, I do enjoy music. What I hate is the trail of wires my Bose surround sound system creates around my rental apartment. And sure, there are a TON of wireless speakers that deliver performance, but watching the conceptual designs on Yanko Design has my bar set a little higher than usual. That is why the latest Instagram announcement by SONOS and IKEA has me truly intrigued by what it can do to my living room!

Everyone’s favorite furniture design brand IKEA has teamed with SONOS once again and what is promised are two new products at least. The first new product, as showcased filing, is a revamped version of the Symfonisk table lamp. It’s expected to be sold for around the same price ($179) as the original product. The second product is a piece of wall art! To quote the Verge, “The Verge has seen an early image of this product, codenamed “Titan,” but details about how it functions couldn’t yet be learned. Specifically, it’s unclear whether the entire artwork print is the product or if the speaker unit can be transferred between different exterior art housings.” Imagine this, wall art or frame that lets you display your favorite image, in your preferred print quality that plays soothing music, wirelessly! Historically, any collaboration between these brands has resulted in products that deliver value on multiple levels – be it the Symfonisk bookshelf speaker or the table lamp speaker. It carries the golden triage – form, functionality, and extreme versatility and modularity that comes with the budget-friendliness of IKEA. My toes are literally tingling from the excitement.

Personally speaking, the entire enterprise for me hinges on 2 factors – the variety of the pictures available and the second one is the price range. Let’s face it – a digital frame with multi-image displaying capacity is nothing new for us. What is new is putting together two of our favorite brands and their powerhouse research into creating a product that meets the needs we did not even know existed till we see it hanging on our wall. Now that, for me, is pure magic!

Designer: IKEA x SONOS

Photo used at the beginning courtesy Matheus Viana from Pexels.

Image of the SYMFONISK table lamp with WiFi speaker, courtesy IKEA.

Photo by Lasse Bergquist on Unsplash