Indianapolis, IN--When the Klipsch industrial design team set out to create the flagship Palladium P-39F floorstanding loudspeaker, their goal was to have it resemble a premium piece of handcrafted furniture. But, less apparent is the team's environmentally friendly approach.
According to Paul Jacobs, president and COO of Klipsch Group Inc., often, when building luxury goods, manufacturers will use a zebrawood veneer because their affluent target market is awed by its dramatic color banding of light and dark stripes. However, it's a resource that is considered threatened in its native habitat, meaning it's vulnerable to extinction in the near future. "With the P-39F, we too are trying to reach upper-echelon customers using a distinct, zebra-striped veneer, but we've found a way to lessen the impact it has on our mother Earth," he said.
The Palladium P-39F features what the company calls a "Linia" veneer, which is available in three different finish stains: natural, merlot and espresso. According to Glen Fuller, Klipsch director of design, Linia is a very close match to zebrawood. It is a hand-selected zebra-grain veneer produced from real wood; tree sources include the Ayous, Obeche and Italian Poplar. These trees are part of a government-sanctioned controlled harvest, so they are a renewable wood resource. "By using the Linia zebra-grain veneer, we're proving that the essence of nature can still be enjoyed without harming the environment," noted Fuller.
There are several other advantages that Linia has over zebrawood. Five times as much zebrawood needs to be used to find an acceptable product finish, resulting in an incredible amount of waste material. Worse yet, it is wasting a natural resource that is not easily renewable. The non-threatened Linia is a more eco-friendly choice, in that its repeatable pattern/grain is consistent and offers graphic uniformity, leaving hardly any waste material behind. Fuller also mentioned that Linia's stain and color consistency from model-to-model is good for manufacturing and matching models from run-to-run and year-to-year.
"Because we want to be an environmentally responsible company, while still setting the highest production standards, we decided to go with a zebra-grain Linia version rather than a zebrawood veneer on the P-39F," said Jacobs.
Palladium P-39F speakers will begin shipping to select U.S. specialty retailers this summer.