Gadgets for humans

Sonus Faber’s new Lumina speakers offer stunning design at a reasonable price

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Sonus Faber may be best known for making some ultra high-end speakers that toe the line between technology and luxury furniture, but that doesn’t mean the company can’t cater to a more affordable market as well. Case in point: The company today premiered its new Lumina line of speakers starting at just $899 for the bookshelf speakers of the line, the Lumina I.

Okay, so $899 may not be that cheap to the average person, but within Sonus Faber’s typical audience, it’s pretty much a bargain. Moreover, the company appears to have sacrificed little on the design front in order to achieve the price point, at least from what can be gleaned from the press release and promotional images.

Notably, the speakers come with a front panel made of ‘multilayer wood,’ a decidedly more premium material than the usual plastic veneer you’d see at this front point. The rest of the speaker is covered in the company’s classic black leather — a unique aesthetic feature that sounds gaudy but Sonus Faber somehow makes work. If the build quality is anything like the other Sonus Faber speakers I’ve seen, it looks like a mighty attractive option to adorn your living room.

Instead of cutting costs on materials, Sonus Faber appears to have saved some money by opting for a more traditional box shape. Traditionally, the company’s speakers feature a rounded ‘lute’ shape that helps eliminate internal cabinet resonances, and rounding all that wood undoubtedly costs some money. I actually prefer the boxy aesthetic on the Lumina, but your mileage may vary.

One can’t gauge much about sound quality from a press release, but Sonus Faber says “due to updated technology, Lumina speakers are incredibly adaptable and sound excellent wherever they are placed—even close to a back wall or on a bookshelf. ”  This makes some sense; many audiophiles looking for speakers at this price point may not have the room to keep their speakers far from a real wall. In practice, this might translate to leaner bass that fills out when placed next to a wall, but we’d have to get our hands on the speaker to be sure.

Spec-wise, the Lumina-1 uses a new 4-inch woofer design with a custom basket and a cellulose pulp diaphragm as seen in some of the company’s other speakers. The company claims it can reach down to 65Hz. The tweeter, meanwhile is borrowed from the more expensive Sonetto line — this tweeter has wide and smooth dispersion so it should mate nicely with the smaller-than-usual woofer.

Bookshelf speaker aside, the company is also selling the Lumina III towers for $2,199 and the Lumina Center speaker for $699. The line is rolling out to dealers worldwide this month.

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Published September 9, 2020 — 02:55 UTC