Interview: SnapAV’s Matthew Kamp Talks Episode, Autonomic, More

Matthew Kamp sat down with CE Pro to discuss how SnapAV’s Episode brand is evolving, and how it is updating its Autonomic brand.


Recently, CE Pro sat down and spoke with Matthew Kamp, director, product management – Audio, SnapAV, to discuss how the Episode brand has evolved over the years, how the brand is meeting NRC criteria, and more. 

How has the Episode brand evolved over the years?

Episode speakers were launched in 2006 and designed to the exacting standards based on the research at the NRC [Canada’s National Research Council]. They were engineered with two things in mind: ease of install and musicality.

These things had to sound good and be easy for our customers — the custom integrators who are installing these daily. The Episode speaker line consists of in-ceiling, in-wall, subwoofers, soundbars and outdoor speakers.

Over the years, the line was expanded to include Episode Signature for the true audiophile.

Why did Episode employ the speaker design methods that were developed by the NRC?

NRC research taught speaker designers that there are measurable characteristics of a speaker that the majority of listeners prefer. Those tests included hundreds of scientifically controlled blind screen listening sessions where a listener had no preconceived biases towards the speaker they were listening to.

The results showed that there was a measurable correlation between the sound the majority of the listeners preferred and the measurements of those speakers. These include flat midrange, low distortion and good off-axis response.

That’s the “recipe” followed by some of the greatest speaker companies in the industry, including Episode. If you’re going to design a speaker, why not design it so the sound is enjoyed by the majority of the population?

How are the new Episode speakers meeting the criteria used by the NRC to evaluate speakers?

Acoustically, our speakers go through rigorous testing to ensure they meet the original acoustic design goals. Our designs have a strict mandate to follow the NRC design philosophy, but we took it a step further. We included uniform sound energy by designing a forward-mounted woofer for the widest possible dispersion.

Our mechanical designs are focused on eliminating the unintentional interference of energy into parts of the speaker beyond the woofer. Being completely resonance-free ensures clean playback every time.

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Our speakers are carefully crafted to maintain their sound energy levels all the way through the output gain level. This means you get pure, powerful, and safe audio at any volume level.

Finally, we focus on dynamic transient response. We use the strongest, lightest materials to ensure the most accurate reproduction possible. 

SnapAV is working to update its Autonomic brand. What should dealers know about for 2019? 

We continue to develop the Autonomic brand through investment and innovation in solutions that solve pain points for professional installers. We want to make Autonomic the No. 1 choice for not only the home A/V professional, but for commercial applications as well. 

We’re doing this through continued investments in system stability/reliability, services, control system integration, stand-alone applications, distribution of audio and new products.

In 2019, we plan to release improvements to TuneBridge with new features, new services and more. We’re also releasing the Autonomic streaming soundbar, which represents the first integrated streamer, amplifier and speaker product in the Autonomic line.

This innovative design combines a single-stream player with a 2.1 active soundbar, providing exceptional audio flexibility.

How is SnapAV supporting dealers to help them sell and install these new audio products?

Our sole focus is making the dealer successful. Success starts with the products themselves. Making them easy to buy, intuitive, easy to install and backed by the best customer support and eCommerce platform in the industry.

We’ll continue to focus on great documentation and installation videos, but the real differentiator will come in the form of flexible systems.

From source to endpoint, we strive to be a one-stop shop for all their A/V needs.