Infinity Cascade Speaker Reviewed

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I love these plays on titles. As you remember from our last episode, I mean two issues back, I was invited on a press junket to Northridge, California, for the unveiling of the new Cascade line of speakers for the Infinity brand of Harman International. You can read that story on our website. So, it was back to review the future of this technology. Soon after that trip, it was off to CEDIA in early September for the home theater show, where we again stopped by the Harman booth for the official introduction of the Infinity Cascade line. 

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At the press tour of the factory, I was so taken aback by the new advancement in driver technology that I quickly requested review samples. We got the exclusive introduction in our Oct/Nov 2005 issue, and I wanted to be the first to review these babies. I was back in Southern California in mid-October on another business trip and had not yet received my samples. I had been calling Harman and bugging them, but as any new intro goes, delays were causing me pain. I was anxious to get them in this issue, and time was about up. After more than two weeks of whining, the last day of my trip would be the payoff.

I received a call, and instead of having them ship samples to either LA or Montana, I suggested a visit to the factory demo room, just minutes from my office in the San Fernando Valley. I arrived early and was escorted into one of the same rooms I had visited just a month or so earlier. I had the entire morning on Friday to bring in my materials and have at it. It was the exact setup I was interested in: The new floor-standing Model Nines, the center Model Three C, side channels of the same Model Nines and two of the Model Fifteen-powered subs, sitting just to the outside of the front mains, away from each corner. The room was about 20 ft. x 28 ft. and looked like a real home theater living room. I was sitting about 8 or 10 feet back between the mains, about 10 feet apart.

The new dual elliptical voice coils and the flat panel CMMD• Diaphragm (ceramic metal matrix) wasn't just some gimmick, but a true advancement. This is the same exclusive material used in their tweeter cones. The advantage of this new driver technology not only increases surface area of the driver surface, but also the increased surface area of the voice coils allows them to dissipate heat more efficiently, reducing thermal compression and increasing dynamic range. This MRS mid/bass flat driver eliminates smear in the sound caused by information arriving to the listener at different times due to cone distortions. The Nines consist of a one-inch CMMD tweeter and two of the new 7 inch x 3 3/8 inch magnetically shielded mid/bass flat elements, in a sleek column.

Read more about the performance of the Infinity Cascade on Page 2.

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