Looks like this is a month of factory tours for us here at SECRETS. I happened to be visiting family in Springfield, IL this week and my son-in-law reminded me that Legacy Audio was located across town. He was able to arrange a tour through their VP, Doug Brown. Legacy handcrafts some of the finest sounding (and looking) loudspeakers around and though they may not be familiar with many of you readers, they have been shown at many audio shows around the country. They make a massive “crown jewel” of a speaker called the Helix, which is a four way, ten driver speaker. The Helix architecture is built around a digital time compensating processor which produces an accurate, coherent and spatially integrated sound that was stunning to listen to.
The Whispers have four 15 in. woofers and are designed to prevent early reflections by using a directionally controlled array. These speakers are not inexpensive, but a lot of work and research have gone into them. Amazing sound quality! The Focus and Classic are, shall we say, more conventional in size and driver array. The same handmade care and design research are found in them as well.
The work shop had a CAD operated cutting machine that was used to make precision cuts on the speaker panels.
Cabinets are made from a special lightweight composite that is about 2 inches thick. Legacy employs around 15 people to put the cabinets together, stain them, assemble the drivers/crossovers and “voice” each and every pair.
Doug Brown showing unfinished Focus & Xtreme subwoofer cabinets-
Hand staining. There are several wood veneers to choose from-
Drying, then ready for driver assembly-
David & Goliath. The Whisper and the Studio HD-
A side view of the Whisper’s unique dual woofer configuration-
A pleasant surprise, Bill Dudleston, the president and founder of Legacy popped in and gave us a demo. Talking with Bill and Doug gave us an appreciation of their passion for sound and design philosophy. People who do this kind of work do it because they are first and foremost, music lovers. My kind of people.
The on-site recording studio @ Legacy-
Legacy also makes center channels and surrounds for the HT buff. Though they sell direct, there are several locations throughout the US and Europe where you can audition their speakers. They received “Best of Show” at the 2010 CES in Las Vegas. I know many of you readers attend CES or Rocky Mountain, so make it a point to stop in and give them a listen. You won’t be disappointed.
A special thank you to Doug and Bill for giving us some of your valuable time and for providing a fascinating tour of the factory. We are very grateful. All in all, a wonderful time at a remarkable speaker company.
Check them out at: Legacy Audio.