Earlier this year, Scandinavian audio company Transparent Sound released the aptly named Transparent Speaker made from tempered glass. See-through and discreet, it was geared toward minimalist musos. Now, the Stockholm-based company has done a complete audio about-face and released a steel speaker that’s anything but transparent.
The Steel Speaker—we appreciate the company’s straightforward monikers—is handcrafted by blacksmith Jonas Majors at his workshop in Mörkö (an island south of Stockholm). Majors repurposes discarded raw metal—he forges it, welds it, polishes and blackens—to give the appearance of aged steel. Size-wise, the boxy speaker measures roughly 17 inches x 13 inches x 4.6 inches and weighs a hefty 44 lbs. No doubt, the durable beast will weather even the rowdiest house party.
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“We saw it as our challenge to make the black box into a sculptural piece of craft that elevates a contemporary designed interior rather than violating it,” the company’s website reads.
While the Steel Speaker may have a rock-n-roll aesthetic, it’s still jam-packed with modern technology. Two 3-inch drivers are paired with a 6.5-inch woofer and a built-in 100W Class D amplifier that promises crisp highs and deep lows for your next Pantera fix. The speaker is also Bluetooth-enabled and can connect to Apple Airplay, Sonos, Amazon Echo or Google Chromecast, plus it’s compatible with phones, tablets and other devices via its dual 3.5mm inputs and USB port.
The Steel Speaker is part of Transparent Sound’s new Upcrafted collection, which it calls “a study in materials, techniques and textures.” The line consists of three handmade speakers, each built from upcycled materials, including wood, steel and stone. You can probably guess their names, but the Stoneware Speaker and the Wood Speaker are smaller and cheaper—both cost $1,650 whereas the Steel Speaker is listed at $2,750.
Given the painstaking effort involved in crafting each speaker, they’re available in limited numbers—the Steel Speaker is capped at just 10. Moreover, since each sound system is made-to-order, you’ll need to allow at least eight weeks for delivery.