Case Study: A Speaker View to Rival
the Manhattan Skyline
Outfitting a house with the latest line of speakers has never been a problem for Manhasset, N.Y.’s Home Theater of Long Island. The homes they equip have featured world-class brands that exceed the expectations of their clients.
But when the homeowner of this New York City apartment wanted an elegant appearance to match the breathtaking sight of the Big Apple outside his windows, Home Theater of Long Island had to start from scratch.
The vista takes center stage, but the accompanying floor-to-ceiling glass windows restricted sound options from the get-go. Architectural in-wall speakers were simply not an option. The only solution that made sense for this resident, who wanted to have the very best possible two-channel music experience at his command, was to add to that view with speakers that were equally awesome – with exquisite industrial design and performance to match. Enter two Meridian DSP5200 loudspeakers.
“The Meridian DSP5200 loudspeakers were on display in our showroom, and we auditioned them for the homeowner,” said Nick Tzortzatos, managing director of Home Theater of Long Island. “The homeowner was under the impression that all speakers needed to have big amplifiers that would take up a ton of space. What he didn't know was that Meridian could take care of all of that and deliver great performance with amplifiers built right into the speaker. There was limited space for equipment, and I needed to maximize his space completely.”
Building around the recommended cabinets was a challenge that Tzortzatos was familiar with, having spent many years working with designers across builds. Initially, the team at Home Theater of Long Island didn't realize the client hadn't consulted with a designer. Their recommendation enlisted the help of a local designer from Roche Bobois.
The homeowner chose a white-gloss finish for his Meridian DSP5200s, and was able to exactly match a designer-recommended Roche Bobois cabinet in the living space. Meridian easily provided the specific RAL color to the furniture maker, which in turn customized the cabinet to match, for a cohesive look that ties the room together.
By choosing speakers with built-in amplifiers, the need for dedicated rack space for traditional amps was also eliminated, further reducing the system’s footprint in this space-constrained residence. The speakers are connected to a small Meridian Audio Core 200 stereo audio controller, which unifies all audio sources, including the homeowner’s old-school iPod.
“I took it a step forward and made it my duty to introduce the client to the designer that I thought would do great work in that space,” Tzortzatos said. “The situation here was unusual because the client didn't have a designer already. Once I found that out, I made the quick recommendation, and was able to get the designer on board.
“As integrators, we have to provide solutions and go above and beyond to ensure results,” he added.
In the Master Bedroom, space was an issue, as it is in many New York City apartments. The bed frame that the homeowner chose was too large to leave room for nightstands on either side. In addition to floor space, the homeowner didn’t want to give up one ounce of sound quality by using in-wall speakers. Home Theater of Long Island found a perfect solution in the Meridian speakers, mounted on the wall using custom, pivoting German wall brackets that stood up to the DSP3200’s secure but elegant build. The result is two-channel on-wall bedroom sound that rivals some of the best floor-standing speakers available. With eyes closed, you’d never guess this system was in a bedroom. It’s anything but “secondary.”
“So long as you have the right products — ones that balance supreme sound quality with design — you can make a bold statement with technology, leaving it out for all to see rather than hiding it away,” said Tzortzatos. “We worked closely with the interior designer to make sure that we gave the homeowner the exciting look he was trying to achieve.”