Gadgets clearviewclio

Published on March 9th, 2015 | by Greg


Clearly Unique: The Clearview Clio Speaker

There are quite a few ways to create sound, but the vast majority of audio gear use a simple, time-tested method. It works in spaces large and small, and means that your huge home theater speakers are basically scaled-up versions of your little earbuds. Headphones and giant tweeters alike work on the principle of magnetic drivers, with a voice coil that is attracted and repelled, creating sound through a flexible cone-shaped diaphragm that vibrates. But it’s not the only system- there are electrostatic or planar options too that are less common but quite interesting.

The Clearview Clio, though, is a completely different animal, even for a Bluetooth system. It uses piezo-electric actuators, a patented system they call Edge Motion, to move a completely clear and transparent piece of acrylic glass. The result isn’t just audible, it’s visible- a thin, lightweight transducer that produces rich sound and works in 360-degrees, less directed than your traditional models. You do get true stereo sound from a single unit, and they’ve built in a down-firing subwoofer as well to handle to low notes.

It’s an interesting technology, showcased beautifully, and has won Clearview some awards for the innovative minimalist design. It reminds us of Dyson’s re-imagining of fans and dryers, and that’s a definite compliment. The wireless works well, and for those who want to use a wired connection, an auxiliary 3.5mm minijack input is available. There aren’t any playback controls on the unit itself, it’s not portable, and they recommend avoiding humid environments. Plus, there isn’t a microphone, so no speakerphone capabilities.

But the biggest downside of the Clio is that it just doesn’t quite sound quite worth the price. As a display, it can attract attention, but it’s easy for it to sound a bit harsh on many musical choices, a bit rough/hollow on vocals, and a bit muted on the low end. The Clio can be quite loud, as it puts out plenty of power for the size, but the overall feeling can be slightly brassy and bright. This may suit your musical tastes- and some environments- and there’s no doubt that the Clio can fill a room. Available online and in stores for around $350, the Clearview Clio can be purchased in bronze, silver, or black accent finishes.

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About the Author

Greg dreamed up the idea for the Truly Network while living in Hawaii, which began with a single site called TrulyObscure. In 2010, when advertisers and readers were requesting coverage beyond the scope of that site, TrulyNet was launched, reaching a broader audience over a variety of niche sites. Formerly the head technology correspondent for the Des Moines Register at age 16, he has since lived and worked in five states and two countries, helping a list of organizations and companies that includes the United States Census Bureau, TripAdvisor, Events Photo Group, Berlitz, and Computer Geeks. He also served as the Content Strategy Manager for HearPlanet, a multi-platform app that has reached over a million users and has been featured in the New York Times, Hemispheres Magazine, National Geographic Adventure, Fox Business News, PC Magazine, and even Apple’s own iPhone ads. Greg has written as a restaurant critic and feature journalist for a number of national and international publications, including City Weekend Magazine, Red Egg Magazine, the Newton Daily News, Capital Change Magazine, and an arm of China Daily, Beijing Weekend. In addition, he has served as a consulting editor for the Foreign Language Press of Beijing, as well as a writer and editor for the George Washington University Hatchet, the school newspaper of his alma mater. Originally from Iowa, Greg is currently living in the West Village of Manhattan.

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