|This article relies on references to primary sources. (December 2009)|
Infinity Systems is an American manufacturer of loudspeakers founded in 1968. Since 1983, Infinity has been part of the Harman International Industries group headquartered in Stamford, Connecticut. Infinity produces packages for a range of audio applications, including multichannel surround sound home theatre packages, in-wall home speakers, and marine applications. Other products include powered subwoofers and car audio amplifiers.
Founded in 1968 by Arnie Nudell, John Ulrick and Cary Christie, Infinity has produced home and mobile audio products by employing innovative materials such as neodymium magnets, mylar diaphragms, and polypropylene cones. The company's first product was the Servo-Static speaker system which, as the name implies, consisted of electrostatic main panels and a revolutionary servo controlled woofer based on the bomb guidance systems Nudell was developing at the time for defense contractor Litton.
In the late 1970s Infinity introduced the EMIT (electromagnetic induction tweeter) and EMIM (electromagnetic induction midrange) drivers. These were flat quasi-ribbons that worked to move air based on the principle of electromagnetic induction. Variants were made, such as the EMIT-R (radial emit), the S-EMIT (super emit) and the L-EMIM (large emim). The IRS (Infinity Reference System) is considered by many[who?] the first ultra-high end system, at US$65,000 in the 1980s. It consisted of 76 EMIT tweeters, 24 EMIM midrange drivers, and twelve 12-inch polypropylene woofers in four towers. The Reference, and later Kappa series, were discontinued when Nudell sold Infinity to Harman Kardon and left to form Genesis Technologies, a high-end loudspeaker company. Genesis' original flagship system, the 1.2, retailed for US$235,000, and is basically an updated Infinity IRS system.
Since the departure of Nudell, Infinity speaker designs have taken a more mass market oriented approach. The efficient SM (Studio Monitor) series incorporated a polycell tweeter and graphite impregnated midrange/woofers. While not as elaborate or high end as previous Infinity efforts, they filled a popular consumer niche.
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