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“Timbre Speaker” by Casey Lin.

To use a colloquial expression, this piece of equipment might “blow your mind”. The wooden box, made from American black walnut, is actually a loud speaker system. It combines materials science with a rationalist mentality to create something, well... in the box.

Surface transducers are mounted onto the inside surface of the wooden box. They vibrate the wood, turning it into a speaker. The wooden box has a particular, though relatively unattractive sound quality. But by placing the glass vessels on the wooden surface, sound vibrations pass into the glass, which changes the timbre of the sound emitting higher frequencies. Moving the glasses around on the surface of the wood also changes the timbre of the sound as the wood is stiffer at the edges of the box. It therefore vibrates to higher pitch sounds. Other objects can be placed on the wood to change the sound to suit your taste.

A demonstration of similar vibrating materials was witnessed a couple of years ago when a Cambridge professor on British TV, placed a 5kg weight on a 2cm square of plastic. From a little squeak, the weight added to the transducer transformed an entire table into a loud speaker.

Casey Lin's version seems rather more refined.

Take a look at the video.

Gratitude to Core 77.

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