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Focal Puts ‘Custom Installer’ in New Line of CI-Fi In-Wall Speakers

Designed for whole-house audio and home theater, the Focal CI-Fi range of architectural loudspeakers provide professional integrators with a choice of in-wall and in-ceiling loudspeakers.

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French loudspeaker manufacturer Focal had the home-technology professional in mind when it launched its new CI-Fi range of architectural speakers at ISE 2018. The “CI” stands for custom installer.

Both the 100 series and 300 series of products will include a choice of in-wall and in-ceiling models suitable for both whole-house audio and home theater applications. 

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According to the company, the CI-Fi loudspeakers combine discreet and compact designs with its proprietary technologies and acoustic expertise to offer homeowners high levels of performance at a choice of competitive price points. 

Focal CI-Fi 100 Series 

Developed as an entry point to the Focal brand, the 100 series features a compact and less directive aluminum-dome tweeter, and a new Polyglass-cone woofer. It is specifically designed for small- to medium-size rooms, such as corridors, living rooms, bedrooms, kitchens and dedicated home theaters. 

The in-ceiling models employ new crossover designs that are said to improve off-axis listening, and Focal engineered the speakers to reduce the “bathroom effect”  that is often encountered with “this type of product.”

All 100 series loudspeakers are capable of installing into humid environments such as bathrooms, and the speakers are also designed to install easily. 

Helping the 100 series install into a variety of environments is their shallow mounting depths and three-position high-frequency switches (-3dB, 0dB and +3dB). The 100 IW6 and 100 IWLCR5 also offer midrange frequency switches (-2dB, 0dB and +2dB) to provide integrators with additional equalization options. 

Focal CI-Fi 300 Series

New 300 series IW6, IWLCR6 and ICLCR5 models augment the existing ICW4, ICW6 and ICW8 models, and Focal says the 300 series now better complements AV systems. 

Focal notes the 300 series enables integrators to “find a dedicated product offering suitable for every room of the house—even for residential home cinemas measuring 160 to 320 feet.”

Incorporating the company's Flax cone woofers and fully adjustable aluminum/magnesium inverted dome tweeters, Focal emphasizes that it paid a high level of attention to phase in order to enable the speakers achieve high levels of sound quality regardless of the room environment. 

The 300 Series ICLCR5 includes a left, center, right channel selector to mechanically direct the sound towards a room's seating area. 

Aiding the installation process, the 300 series also includes Focal's Easy Quick Install (EQI) system. Focal says that through its EQI system, the products install without the need to use tools via a bracket system that automatically attaches the loudspeaker to the support. 

Available in the U.S. through its distribution partner Audio Plus Services, the newly announced range of speakers will launch with the 100 series in February 2018 and the 300 series in May 2018. 

About the Author

Robert Archer
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Robert Archer:

Bob is an audio enthusiast who has written about consumer electronics for various publications within Massachusetts before joining the staff of CE Pro in 2000. Bob is THX Level I certified, and he's also taken classes from the Imaging Science Foundation (ISF) and Home Acoustics Alliance (HAA). Bob also serves as the technology editor for CE Pro's sister publication Commercial Integrator. In addition, he's studied guitar and music theory at Sarrin Music Studios in Wakefield, Mass., and he also studies Kyokushin karate at 5 Dragons in Haverhill, Mass.

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