XHiFi Showcases A New 3-Piece Sound System

| Macworld/iWorld Expo
Here at Macworld, xHiFi is flaunting its sexy-looking xDucer 2.1 Multimedia Loudspeaker System. The company is looking to fill a space in the computer audio market for higher-end systems, so the price is as saucy as the sound: US$795, but as xHiFi spokesman John Alexander points out, the system uses components that appear in much higher-end stereo systems. At the stereo equipment tradeshows, where xHiFi has shown in the past, Mr. Alexander points out that US$800 would "hardly buy your audio cables."

The xDucer 2.1 is just the beginning,however: An add-on package with three additional speakers is on its way, which will allow xDucer 2.1 owners to jump into the world of 5.1 surround sound. The company also plans to release a firewire breakout box to add sound cards and other audio-support hardware. With these products, xHiFi is aiming to squarely at both Kilpsch (in the medium-high end surround sound market) and Creative Labs (maker of the Soundblaster line of audio cards). Ultimately, xHiFi hopes to offer a range of speaker products that span a broad range: US$300-$2,000.

For those curious about the details of the xDucer, the systemis parts are designed by JVC and packaged in a cherry hardwood enclosure. The conical satellite speakersi response runs up to 50 kHz, and propagates the sound in a nearly 360-degree pattern. (There is some frequency dependence on the spread. The highest frequencies donit make it all the way around.) The woofer makes it down to a barely audible 30Hz. Of course, itis always hard to judge sound quality on the noisy showroom floor, but stay tuned. Weire looking forward to getting some of these products into the famous TMO Labs this fall.

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