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I expect the rippling baffles were their own nightmare?
Quite so. I built the first prototypes on a router myself. The bigger challenge actually is the wood's innate softness. You can't tear out any micro fibers as you go across the grain. Then there's hitting upon at first invisible flaws like 'subcutaneous' resin inclusions or knots. That's why I ended up with Shellac. It protects the outer surface. A perfectly flat fascia would be a lot easier but once I'd chanced upon the wavy notion, its innate aesthetic just wouldn't leave my designer gene alone. I couldn't abandon the idea just because like the rest of this project it was a royal pain in the arse. As my other company's name kaosevents should suggest, I do thrive on challenges.

Again, I don't believe in high-mass super rigid speaker enclosures. I've heard my fair share of such designs. I'm sorry to say but their sound simply isn't for me. I believe that an enclosure must be optimized to shed all input energies as quickly and efficiently as possible. The less mass you start out with, the less there is to store in and the better this shedding works. Of course you must also have structural strength for proper wave-launch inertia. Not only are our steam-bent pressure-formed side walls far stronger than any equivalent flat panels would be, the magnet-to-stand interface guarantees proper rigidity for the driver's mounting.

Perhaps one day I should splurge and create a Wave 40 from solid MDF just to satisfy any lingering doubts that tone wood wasn't absolutely essential to my quest? I really don't think so.

You're using silver wiring for your hookup and crossover leads?
Affirmative. I even did a Salabert by asking Armin for silver voice coils. We're still exploring that option. But Aleksandar already gives me Siltech silver/gold matching transformers for his ribbons.

When you delivered your crates, I was shocked by how small they were. Once we carried the speakers upstairs, I couldn't believe how light they were.
I had the same disconnect. I actually put myself on a scale first just to make sure it measured correctly. The Wave is only about 20kg. That's perfectly in line with my low-mass idea. And actually the final design is a bit smaller than what you saw in the Mövenpick hotel. That's because I shortened the stand to better align the acoustic center of the front wave with the listening seat.

miniature horn mouth routing

The metal plinths look absolutely amazing.
That's because I went all the way. The bottom plates I showed at HighEnd Suisse were still made by one of my usual UK suppliers. For final production I went after a Swiss vendor. Of course that got more expensive again but it does show.

one of the many custom jigs required for production of a Wave 40 speaker

Now that the project is finalized, do you have any hindsight wisdom?
For me half the fun was in the journey - in the reading, studying, dreaming, experimenting. There were many times when the flow stopped or regular work life interceded. But just as often some chance encounter with a book or film or one of your writeups would introduce the next piece of the puzzle and cross another bridge. As a perfectionist I obviously went after a design that was asking for trouble. But since I don't foresee this to become my main business—these are built to order for the type of customer who appreciates the artisanal nature and value—I'm perfectly content with the otherwise perhaps impractical or unjustifiable gestation period and concomitant expenses. My kaosevents background has me very comfortable with assembling a crack team of collaborators and vendors whom I rely on to deliver results. With this project I was blessed to come across individuals like Christien Ellis, Armin Galm and my genius super-talented woodworkers Simon and Petra plus many others whose insights, advice and passion kept the wave going.

some earlier prototypes by Martin's own hands

What are your present plans for world dominion?
As Bakoon's Swiss importer, I'm talking with Soo In Chae in Korea to exhibit together at Munich HighEnd 2013. He is keen on not just coming with his AMP-11R and the new HPA-21 headphone amp but also the AMP-51/DAC-51. He simply doesn't know yet whether he can make the show's time line with first production of those new models. On that front things are still a bit up in the air. I'm quite certain however that at least soundkaos will be there on the ground floor in a fully enclosed booth I'll be building for better sound and a proper presentation.