Gimbal Horn Speakers

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The Gimbal Horn Speaker by Specimen Products is a ceiling mounted high fidelity speaker horn. It can be used with almost any sound system, but is uniquely suited to pair with Specimen Products tube amplifier systems. It has an aluminum down tube, cast aluminum yolk with hand knobs and an indexing plate with a pin for adjusting position. A cylindrical compression chamber is laminated from hardwood. Front and back panels are Baltic birch plywood. The driver is front loaded with a horn. Binding posts and speaker wire are prominently visible, emanating from the cylinder and running up the down tube. A356 alloy aluminum yoke.

The Gimbal horn grew out of a request for stage horns to be mounted above performers. Three are to be situated so that they may either supplement the PA system or be used with a musicians instrument amplifier for performance. This enables inserting instruments which are traditionally difficult to amplify directly into the mix in a very three dimensional way.

The Gimbals can also be used as an atmospheric sonic supplement within a civic space. In this context they become part of a true surround system. The Gimbals can be precisely aimed into a listening/living space so that sonic playback and performance take on new spatial meaning. Separated tracks are juxtaposed into a space, either over a matrix of horns or through a specifically arranged presentation or composition.

All sound is the filling of negative space. A musical composition is a consideration of what isn’t there. A filling of space with sound. Reflections and resonances within the space itself are how we locate ourselves, by knowing our physical presence through a repertoire of familiar sonic experience.

The Gimbals combine sonics with visual information. Heavily crafted for posterity, they both symbolize and embody process which has faded into disuse. Sand casting, woodcarving, meticulous assembly and surface finish. They remind us of another time. Perhaps that we have only read about. This is sad, and also what makes the Gimbal horn compelling. They combine history with the present tense.