Omuni Omnidirectional Loudspeakers Announced

omuni2VINTAGE AUDIO EXPERT Eric Cross has announced the imminent availability of his Omuni brand omnidirectional loudspeakers.
Christchurch-based Cross, who has been receiving interest for his invention from respected international hi-fi portals like 6moons, will be rolling the Omuni speakers out slowly in the later months of 2014.
In contrast to normal forward firing loudspeakers, where you hear the music at its best in a single fixed listening position (the ‘sweet spot’), omnidirectional speakers do what the word indicates: there’s no sense of quite where the music is coming from, but it fills the room “like most sounds heard in nature.”
According to Omuni’s blurb, the speaker “radiates equally in all directions… an omni-directional radiator is audibly superior. The sound is natural in mimicking the experience of live music performance. The ‘sound stage’ stereo imaging is considerably expanded, thus diminishing the feeling of needing to keep your ears locked into a narrow listening position.”
It continues: “Front-firing speakers are unable to recreate the sound fields of acoustic instruments that propagate sound omni-directionally. Just like hand-claps, solo pianos, violins, guitars, drums and cymbals and many other instruments are not front-firing and hence cannot be reproduced naturally throughout a listening area by front-firing speakers.”
Cross says that the Omuni is much less subject to colouration by the addition of reflected sound from room boundaries and furnishings, because an omnidirectional speaker has the same output on and off the listening axis, where a rectangular boxed front-firing speaker degrades off axis and suffers from extremely poor, bass heavy response off the sides and back of the enclosure.
IMG_8343So, what are the details? The Omuni is a two-way design with a downward-facing 8-inch bass driver in an aperiodic labyrinth, with a 3-inch mid-high frequency driver running up to 25Khz. This driver radiates a full 360 degrees horizontally and vertically, with dispersion achieved by the Omuni Lens, a unique design that provides horn loading of the 3-inch driver over the full 360 degrees.
The Omuni speakers can be placed 30cm or more from the back wall, but not close to corners, while “placing them well into the room produces a spectacular soundstage.” And they can even be wheeled back at the end of a listening session.
The speaker is hand built in NZ with Multiplex Spruce, and the top triangulated section of each speaker is a “complex laminated solid block that weighs over 7 kilograms.”
The crossover utilises only two high quality components without matching resistors, while the paper cone and the pressed steel frame of the bass driver are treated with Meranti Damar natural resin to enhance the tone.
The Omuni omni-directional speakers are 750 high by 390 wide with a depth of 335mm, and boast a frequency response of 28 Hz – 20 Khz -3db.
Rather than sell through retail outlets, Cross is setting up a network in both the North and South Islands where the Omuni can be demonstrated.
We look forward to auditioning a pair!

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