Manhattan’s Life Hotel occupies the former Midtown headquarters of Life Magazine, where celebrated artists lived and produced the publication. The elegant boutique hotel features 98 rooms, a restaurant and a subterranean cocktail bar – said to have been a speakeasy for magazine staffers during Prohibition.

Life HotelRecently Synapse Audio Visual Designs designed and installed a high-end sound system befitting the meticulously renovated building’s rich history and sophisticated vibe. Among the challenges the Synapse team faced were eight-foot ceilings and hard reflective surfaces in the hotel lobby bar/dining area, and basement speakeasy. Compact, high-fidelity loudspeakers were required to fit discretely in the hotel’s tight installation spaces without detracting from its elegant design aesthetic.

‘When our client said she was looking for small, high-end loudspeakers for the Life Hotel, I knew exactly where to turn,’ says Synapse owner, Chris Obssuth. ‘We designed a distributed system based on Fulcrum Acoustic’s RX Series coaxial loudspeakers. We’ve found their high output-to-size ratio and broad 90° x 90° coverage extremely effective in close quarters like the hotel spaces.’

Eight compact Fulcrum RX699 6.5-inch coaxial loudspeakers cover the lobby’s cozy bar and dining area with six additional RX699s in the historic downstairs speakeasy, which was discovered during the hotel’s extensive renovation. ‘The beauty of Fulcrum’s RX Series speakers is that they’re very full sounding for a small form factor and their mid-bass is ridiculously good,’ says Obssuth.

‘We also installed two ultra-compact Fulcrum US212 dual 12-inch subwoofers in the basement speakeasy for the low frequency extension needed to support live DJs,’ Obssuth adds. ‘When space is a challenge to find, as is often the case in New York city, Fulcrum loudspeakers are a great fit.’

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