Having used the 2012 Pro Light and Sound show, to preview the fledgling company's first offerings to the Pro Audio marketplace, Inspired Audio return with production versions of those initial products and some significant additions to the range.
With encouraging initial sales developing across, Asia, the Middle East and Europe, a major bonus has been the strong take up within the Audio Visual market and this has in turn had an influence on the product plan. Design director Chris Scott commented.
' The ultra-compact Optima 5 has really hit the spot within the A/V market, so priority has been given to strengthening our offering in this segment, although in fairness what works in A/V also crosses over into Church, theatre and live sound our other key markets.'
So first up for a Frankfurt reveal is a new addition to the Optima array range, the Optima B210, a compact 2 x 10" bass enclosure that incorporates a fully integrated fly system, 800 w power handling and 55–200 Hz pass band. Sharing a common width with the Optima 5 enclosure, the cabinet can be flown above or ground stacked below Optima 5 arrays. Acoustically the cabinet is intended as the bass element of an Optima 5 array system within the Audio Visual market, enabling compact and discreet flown drops to cover the needs of the conference market. The addition of floor mounted subs, such as the Reflex SB118, would extend the functionality of the system to cover the evening entertainment.
Frankfurt will also see an addition to the Axis range of products in the shape of the AX8, a compact enclosure that uses a coaxial 8 + 1" transducer to deliver sonic clarity over a 70 Hz – 20 KHz frequency range. While the existing AX12 and AX15 products are stage monitors first, but with a twist of practicality in that they retain a certain elegance when pole mounted, the AX8 has been designed to offer a slender profile when pole mounted with a low profile monitor angle for when it is tucked under a lecture on monitor duties.
Last but not least on the product front, Pro Light and Sound will mark the debut of a new UK speaker brand, L2 Audio. Aimed firmly at the professional working musician, the initial five products from the companies X Series range, will debut at the show. Taking the self-powered route that predominates in this market sector, the initial release includes X150 bass and X180 sub bass cabinets, along with 12" and 15" based full range enclosures. Topping the range will be the X Wave, mid/top pack, which combines dual 8" midrange drivers with four 1" exit compressions on a vertical wave guide. All products share a common twin 800 w class D power pack, with full on board DSP, software control and pre-set display screen. Commenting on the collaboration, Chris Scott said,
' With Inspired committed to delivering integrated audio solutions, based on a system amplifier, self-powered is not a route that fits with our ethos or market place, so collaborating with L2 represented no conflict for us. On the export front we have freedom to have co-distribution for people looking for a larger product spread and also the freedom to go our own way depending on what best fits the brand. Ultimately the two brands complement each other as they have a clear brand focus, but in quite different market place'.
While Frankfurt 2012 established many potential export contacts around the globe, it was ironic that one of the most important came from our own patch of earth! Conversations at the show with London and Birmingham based LMC Audio Systems, led to collaboration at the PLASA show and their subsequent appointment as the sole UK and Eire distributor for Inspired Audio. Marking this new partnership, Will Hinkly from the London office will be joining Inspired on the stand at Frankfurt, show, while also joining the team will be Mick Whittemore from UK specialist Pro Musician dealer MGD Audio Group. Anchoring the team will be design director Chris Scott, so for an over view of the Inspired and L2 Audio ranges, a chat and the odd beverage head to Hall 8, stand F12.