The grand in-wall speaker launches
Steinway Lyngdorf, maker of the finest sound systems in the world in partnership with Steinway & Sons, is proud to announce launch of its latest product, the ‘Grand’ IW-66 in-wall speaker. Designed for use as front speakers in medium to large size high performance home theaters, the IW-66 speaker bridges the gap between our regular in-wall speaker series and the immense performing line source speakers. The IW-66 will be shipping worldwide immediately.
When seated far from the speakers in medium to large sized theaters you face at least two severe challenges:
- Avoiding ceiling / floor reflections interfering with the direct sound
- Having enough SPL
Using a normal point source will not cut it. Until now the only high end solution has been a line source speaker. Steinway Lyngdorf has developed a new technology that resulted in a speaker that bridges the gap between the normal point source and the high priced line source solution.
The IW-66 is a true d’Appolito configuration for focused vertical dispersion and thus eliminating the critical first ceiling/floor reflections. However, in order to achieve the same focused vertical dispersion in the treble and at the same time handle the necessary power, the engineers developed the FAT™ – Focusing Array Tweeter – technology that uses an array of three Air Motion Transformer tweeters. This ingenious solution means that the center tweeter will handle the highest frequencies and the upper and lower tweeter will handle the low treble giving the array the necessary power capabilities – and at the same time have the same dispersion as the d’Appolito configured mid/woofers.
Few people realize how much power is actually required to reach 105dB (the reference level normally used for a home theatre) at the listening position.
As an example, a 4 Ohm loudspeaker with 90dB/2.8V/1M sensitivity would need a massive 1000W to reach 105dB at 4m / 13ft distance in an anechoic room. In a real room – more ‘live’ due to reflections – it would still need in excess of 400W. And well over 800W if the distance is 8m / 26ft. The IW-66 is a different story. The sensitivity is impressive 95dB and with its six 6½” mid/woofers and three AMT tweeters handles no less than 2 x 400W / 2 X 800 peak. This means reaching 105dB at 4m / 13ft requires 128W and at 8m / 26ft 256W. At 15m / 50ft distance you will still be able to reach reference level.
Hence the first impression you get when listening to the IW-66 is how effortless it performs. You are never in doubt that it still has plenty of headroom to reproduce everything from the faintest detail to the most massive sound effects.
One of the Steinway Lyngdorf loudspeaker philosophies is to minimize cabinet contribution. And the IW-66 is no exception. The 140cm / 55in tall speaker is divided into three separate cabinets assembled with sturdy metal brackets on each side. The separate cabinets not only minimize cabinet vibrations but also prevents the air pressure inside the woofer cabinet from influencing the performance of the midrange drivers.
Time domain optimized drivers
The keyword for the drivers in any loudspeaker from Steinway Lyngdorf is that we do everything we can for optimizing the time domain for the simple reason that a slow driver can never be made fast (start and stop precisely as the signal dictates) by adding EQ. A driver simply needs to be as fast as possible for the frequency range it is working within.
The midrange/woofers used in IW-66 are specially designed for the application by Steinway Lyngdorf. The cones of the 6½” drivers are so-called ‘hard-cones’ – cones that work without break-ups in their entire working range. The cones are made from aluminum which by nature is a stiff and lightweight material – but to further increase stiffness they undergo a deep anodization process. The powerful ‘motor’ of the driver consists of an 890g / 31oz vented magnet and a Ø35mm / 1½” long-throw voice coil. Venting the magnet prevents over and under pressure developing behind the dust cap when the cone moves back and forth. The advantage is a faster, more dynamic and precise sound reproduction.
The pole piece of the magnet is copper cladded which ensures a significant reduction in distortion as it short-circuits the eddy currents that are inevitably sent into the magnet system when a signal current runs through the voice coil. The basket is made from cast aluminum which has two functions: Firstly, as aluminum is a non-magnetic material, the magnetic force does not spread out into the basket but stays concentrated where it is needed; Around the magnet gap for the voice coil. Secondly, the aluminum basket is a very sturdy design that ensures that the heavy magnet is always perfectly aligned with the voice coil. The result is a mid/woofer with a superb impulse response, high sensitivity and great power handling.
The Air Motion Transformer tweeter (AMT) features an ultra-thin, folded Kapton diaphragm with a large surface area. The AMT tweeter combines the advantages of a dome tweeter with the advantage of a ribbon tweeter, resulting in higher power handling and very accurate detail reproduction. Due to the driving force being distributed over the entire surface area of the diaphragm, and the fact that the design ensures a uniform magnetic field irrespective of diaphragm excursions, the AMT always “tracks” the signal with absolute precision. The large surface area, which equals that of cone of a 5¼“ midrange, allows for excellent cooling and results in an efficiency that is 4 times higher than a conventional dome tweeter. Hence the risk of overload and power compression is virtually eliminated. The result is an incredibly powerful, smooth, linear, dynamic and amazingly transparent high frequency reproduction.
The IW-66 is intended for mounting in the wall behind an acoustically transparent screen. The speaker comes with installation accessories included. A sturdy metal plate is installed at the bottom of the wall cut out and the adjustable spikes at the bottom of the speaker slides easily into matching holes in the metal plate to ensure secure placement.
The top speaker bracket is screwed into the front of the wall / studs and the vertical angling of the speaker is easily adjusted with a single center mounted bolt.
Full System Approach
The IW-66 can be mixed with all speakers from Steinway Lyngdorf and must be driven by our dedicated processors and amplifiers. The legacy of absolute perfection that comes with the Steinway & Sons partnership cannot be attained with a mix of “off the shelf” products from different manufacturers. No chain is stronger than the weakest link, and the full system approach ensures high efficiency in every aspect.