| Cult of Mac

Amazing $2,000 speaker is worth every penny


Looks, power, and ease of use - what more do you need?
Looks, power, and ease of use - what more do you need?
Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

Best List: Phantom speaker by Devialet

A whispered conversation in a library is about 30 decibels. A normally loud chat comes in at around 65 decibels. A jackhammer at 50 feet is 95 decibels, and also the loudness at which our ears can get damaged with prolonged exposure.

The Phantom speaker I’ve been using as my main television and Bluetooth speaker for the last couple of weeks tops out at 99 decibels. This sucker gets loud, without any distortion, real quick. It’s easy to use, looks amazing in any room, and will change your experience of music and movies from the moment you turn it on.

While it looks like something out of the future depicted in a Kubrick film, has an ungainly outdoor-style power cable, and is heavier than you’d think, the Phantom is simply the best home speaker I’ve ever encountered.

For two grand, it had better be.

Audyssey Lower East Side Media Speakers: Class, With a Little ‘Tude [Review]



After the critical success of Audyssey’s South of Market dock last year, Audyssey eventually released their next product, the Lower East Side Media Speakers ($250), in October of this year.

This time, Audyssey has dropped the radical approach to design it used for the SOMA dock — with its unusual, back-to-back speaker configuration — in favor of a much more conventional, yet still attractive, form. Audyssey left three things unchanged though: Like the SOMA, the LES speakers exhibit a good deal of quality, and incorporate what Audyssey calls their “Smart Speaker” technology. And like the SOMA, these speakers are a bit pricier than their contemporaries. So the question is: Do they deliver?