Italian Style and design is renowned around the world for its seemingly natural ability to cultivate products that employ luxury materials and place a high degree of emphasis on dashing good looks and superior levels of performance. This almost national obsession with all things easy on the eye is commonly seen in its cars, domestic appliances, furniture and, of course, fashion houses. Say something is designed or made in Italy, and it instantly conjures up such uber-cool brands as Ferrari, Smeg, Dolce & Gabbana or Prada – to name but a few – as marques that set the standard for their use of lavish materials and craftsmanship.
And so it goes with high-end Italian hi-fi brand Sonus faber, which has a history of producing lavish speaker designs that are as much about creating elegant pieces of furniture with a luxury appeal as delivering high-end audio performance levels. The Sf16 (shown above) is its first all-in-one integrated music system. As a 'plug and play' solution, it is billed as a high fidelity multi-room wireless music streaming system, housed in
a solid wood cabinet with extending motorised speaker pod ‘wings’ and brushed aluminium trim.
The Sf16 supports hi-res audio up to 24-bit/192kHz, is DLNA-compatible and boasts DTS Play-Fi to connect with up to 16 compatible speakers via wi-fi. Signature Sonus faber technologies are also onboard, and these include Zero Vibration Transmission, Sound Field Shaping and Stealth Reflex System. It claims 1,400W power output and has front and rear-facing 120mm aluminium/magnesium alloy bass drivers (firing in opposing directions to reduce vibration) housed inside the main cabinet. Each retractable speaker pod contains two 50mm ceramic midrange drivers (one front-facing and one rear-facing) and two 10mm silk dome tweeters (again, one front and one rear-facing). The Sf16 is sold in the UK through Absolute Sounds and will be available from September with a price tag of £9,900.
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