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CES 2013: Bang & Olufsen unveils new integrated speaker system

While most integrated speaker systems are hidden away in the ceiling so they don’t spoil your décor, Danish audio company Bang & Olufsen sees things differently. Bang & Olufsen products have always been as much about how good they look as how good they sound, and the company’s new built-in sound system certainly makes a bold design statement.

Bang & Olufsen’s new integrated system is made up of the Beolab 15 two-way active speakers, the Beolab 16 active subwoofer and a rack-ready amp, the Amplifier 1. The speakers can be ceiling mounted, but you really need to wall mount them to get the full aesthetic effect.

The speakers are motorised, so that you can direct the music to suit your room. The angle of direction is configurable, and once setup, the speakers will open to the desired angle whenever the system is switched on.

The Amplifier 1 is comprised of six discrete amps – two 150w amplifiers drive the Beolab 16 subwoofer, while each Beolab 15 speaker is fed 150w for the midrange and 45w for the tweeter.

Although hotel suites are never the ideal environment to evaluate speakers, the sound produced by the new system was full, rich and detailed. I’m looking forward to spending some proper time auditioning the Beolab 15/16 system when I’m back in the UK.

The system will be available later this month with a US price of $4,595, although that price doesn’t include installation.