Detroit, which was the king of the music and automotive world, has fallen on hard times recently. A tiny start-up called Detroit Audio Lab, hopes to change that. The company which was started by retired engineer and audiophile Mike Bauer, wants to bring music and manufacturing back to the ailing city.


Detroit Audio Lab is taking a unique approach. Whereas most speaker manufacturers assemble their wares overseas, DAL plans to make all of their speakers state-side. Many of the blighted structures across the Detroit area will find new life as reclaimed wood from old buildings and homes will be used as raw materials to manufacture the speakers at Audio Lab’s facility. Each handcrafted speaker will have the address of where the wood was salvaged laser engraved on its body. DAL is also partnering with Michigan firms to design and produce the crossover networks and circuit boards for the speakers.


To help fund this ambitious endeavor, Detroit Audio Lab has started a Kickstarter campaign with hopes to raise $50,000 to help fund the project. As with any Kickstarter project there are certain risks involved. However, if everything goes according to plan, the D: Audio Voice is expected to ship the end of 2016, while the rest of the line should begin shipping early 2017. More information can be found on Kickstarter.


D:Audio Solo ($425/$500 each):

Detroit Audio Lab Solo

Sealed Bluetooth speaker with two full-range drivers
Connectivity is via Bluetooth or a minijack input
AC/DC adapter and rechargeable/replaceable battery


D:Audio Riff ($675/$770 each):

Detroit Audio Lab Riff

Powered two-way, bass-reflex speaker
Connectivity is via Bluetooth
Minijack input or standard RCA inputs
May be a standalone audio source or complement an existing system
Powered by AC, with an optional rechargeable/replaceable battery


D:AudioBack-Beat ($1,250/$1,400 a pair):

Detroit Audio Lab Back Beat

Two-way, bass-reflex bookshelf speaker rated down to 45 Hz.


D:Audio Amp ($200/$250 each):

Detroit Audio Lab Amp
A 100-watt Integrated stereo amplifier in a small footprint
Connectivity via Bluetooth and a minijack input


D:Audio Voice ($65/$80):

Detroit Audio Lab Voice

A passive “amplifier,” passively increases the speaker volume of smartphones or small tablets.


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