Gone are the days of big, brick-like subwoofers and hulking sound units. The most modern and aurally advanced speakers have shed that extra bulk in favor of clean, pure, round shapes, like Bang & Olufsen's BeoPlay A9. Created by Danish industrial designer, Øivind Alexander Slaatto, a major player in the Scandinavian design scene, the BeoPlay A9 swept up the industry's major honors, winning the prestigious 2013 IF Product Design Award and a CES Design & Innovation Award.
Slaatto explains that "sound travels in circles, like waves around a stone when it hits the water. Circles define the grid of everything in this design and the result is obvious, minimalistic and poetic. I aimed towards a design, that looked more like a piece of furniture than a machine."
The BeoPlay A9 not only blends seamlessly into nearly any interior, its operation is equally unobtrusive, integrating Apple's swipe function. There's no volume control panel; simply swipe your hand sideways along the top of the unit to increase or decrease the volume. Test drive the sound for yourself and watch the Crafting BeoPlay A9 video (below).
—Perrin Drumm, associate web editor. Follow her @perrindrumm.