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Jonathan Bell

Seven sculptural speakers that go to 11

Bowers & Wilkins Nautilus 30th Anniversary edition in Abalone Pearl, among our pick of sculptural speakers

We present seven sculptural speakers that double up as pieces of art, designs that combine the ultimate in high-fidelity and manufacturing with exuberant forms that’ll draw attention even when they’re silent.

7 sculptural speakers to shape your space and sound

1. Bowers & Wilkins Nautilus 30th anniversary edition

Bowers & Wilkins Nautilus 30th Anniversary edition in Abalone Pearl (Image credit: Bowers & Wilkins)

First up is Bowers & Wilkins’ flagship speaker, the Nautilus. This most iconic of speaker designs encapsulates the playful streak of design that was teased out by post-modernism, Memphis, Starck and Alessi. A new finish, Pearlescent, has been created to mark the shell-like structure’s three decades on sale. Each Nautilus is made by hand, strictly to order, at Bowers & Wilkin’s factory in Worthing, on England’s south coast. 

A single pair of Abalone Pearl finished speakers marks the anniversary, mimicking the natural mother of pearl found inside the shell that inspired the speaker structure. The complex enclosure takes a week to build – the waiting list is currently two years – and the company also offers a custom finishing service to match your interior scheme. 

Bowers & Wilkins Nautilus, from £90,000 per pair,

2. Magico Audio M9

Magico Audio M9 (Image credit: X)

Magico Audio’s is an order of magnitude more imposing than the dramatic swirl of the Nautilus. Introduced at the turn of the decade, the M9 is the Californian company’s magnum opus, a synthesis of peerless electronics and no-holds-barred attention to detail in design and construction.

Magico Audio M9 cross section (Image credit: Magico Audio)

Each speaker weighs 454kg, with a towering housing composed of carbon fibre and aircraft grade aluminium. In cross-section, the M9 resembles a Formula 1 car, so complex are the channels and structures that guide and shape the sound from the drivers without generating any unwanted movement or vibration.  

Magico Audio M9, from £850,000 per pair,

3. Piega MLS 2 Gen2

Piega MLS 2 Gen2 (Image credit: PIEGA)

Swiss brand Piega has launched the Gen2 version of its MLS 2 speakers, with an enclosure designed by its regular collaborator, the Zürich-based architect Stephan Hürlemann. Available in silver, black, white and Zebrano veneer, the MLS 2 (Master Line Source) loudspeakers are designed for larger rooms, with a striking totem-like enclosure that makes a virtue of the different types of speaker technologies it deploys (for the detail-minded, these are ribbon tweeters, coaxial line sources, and dipoles). 

PIEGA MLS 2 Gen2, £75,000.00 per pair,

4. Loudt musegg

Loudt musegg (Image credit: Loudt)

Loudt is a new Austrian speaker-maker and audio specialist that wants to combine bold design and strong audio performance with a commitment to longevity. To this end, their new musegg speaker is fully hardware upgradeable, with a detachable module containing the streaming circuitry. The company acknowledges that audio perfection is extremely subjective, and however finely tuned a speaker might be, it won’t necessarily sound great to everyone. 

The musegg is therefore designed as a ‘perfect core’, capable of being tuned to personal preferences, with all digital components separated so they can be easily upgraded. Co-founder Juergen Seidler describes it as a ‘product that focuses not only on quality and performance, but also on sustainability and environmental responsibility.’ 

Musegg by Loudt, €5,700,

5. Franco Serblin Accordo Essence

Franco Serblin Accordo Essence (Image credit: Franco Serblin )

Audio engineer Franco Serblin (who died in 2013) is best known as the founder of Italian audio company Sonus Faber. His legacy also lives on in the work of his eponymous company, which hand builds loudspeakers like the Ktêma and Accordo Essence. The latter is now available in two new finishes, graphite and high-gloss walnut. An angular floor-standing design, raised up high-tech style adjustable legs, the speakers makes a bold statement and fill the largest of rooms with ease.  

Franco Serblin Accordo Essence, £12,998 per pair,, available from Absolute Sounds,

6. Chronosonic XVX 4 Seasons: Winter Edition by Wilson Audio

Chronosonic XVX 4 Seasons: Winter Edition by Wilson Audio (Image credit: Wilson Audio)

Wilson Audio is an American manufacturer known for its extravagantly engineered designs. The company recently launched the Winter Edition, the last of a Four Seasons series of finishes of their mighty Chronosonic XVX loudspeaker. Designed by Daryl Wilson, son of late founder Dave, the XVX exposes its interior workings with a console-like structure that pairs elaborately machined components with glossy finishes and colour-co-ordinated, hand-wound cables.

Chronosonic XVX 4 Seasons: Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter editions (Image credit: Wilson Audio)

The four carefully conceived colour schemes of the Seasons series might not be to everyone’s taste but they make a distinct difference from high-end audios over-reliance on black and grey. Besides, the Chronosonic XVX can also be specified in any colour you like. It’s not even the firm’s flagship; that honour goes to the WAMM Master Chronosonic, available at £700,000 per paid. 

Chronosonic XVX  4 Seasons: Winter Edition by Wilson Audio, £400,000 per pair,, available via Absolute Sounds,

7. Syng Cell Alpha

Syng Cell Alpha (Image credit: Syng)

We’ve sung the praises of Syng before – indeed, the Cell Alpha won ‘Most Masterful Music Device’ in our 2022 Smart Space Awards. The Californian company was founded by Apple alumni Christopher Stringer in order build the ultimate home audio solution. The Cell Alpha incorporates what it calls ‘Triphonic Audio’, mapping the physical space around the sci-fi shaped speakers to maximise audio distribution from the eight drivers. Out of this world, both in looks and sound. 

Syng Cell Alpha with floor stand, $2,499,

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