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The Cobbler

One of my favorite expressions is “The cobbler’s children have no shoes”. It’s so true, I always run into chefs who have no real kitchen at home, and of course the audio industry is full of people with no proper stereo at home. My favorite record store owner does not even listen to music at home (I can kind of understand that, though). We don’t have that problem, fortunately, with many systems using vintage speakers and amplifiers from my collection in use all over Oswald’s Mill. The NYC showroom is of course replete with OMA products, but for 20 years there was never a system in the kitchen and dining area of the loft, the lack of which Cynthia has long pointed out. My excuse: the cobbler has to put the customer’s shoes first.

So here’s the Cobbler Speaker- something I’ve had in mind from a design standpoint for a long time, but of course it’s not horn loaded, and in fact it is a rather “conventional” speaker, except  that it’s a throwback to the high efficiency two way designs from the end of the tube audio era in the 1950’s. Instead of using a small horn it uses a vintage top of the line Heil AMT (air motion transformer- great driver!) It also uses the ultra cool alnico JBL white cone woofer, both being mounted directly to a 1″ thick piece of water jet cut cleft Pennsylvania slate, itself captured in 1″ thick Pennsylvania black walnut. The box, and bless my woodworker, was not an easy thing to make, either, as all the sides slope inward, with no parallel walls, and are connected by hand cut dovetails using a Japanese hand saw. Finished in oil and wax. So heavy, I couldn’t comfortably pick one up myself, about 80 Lbs.

If people have an interest, we could make this into a product. We’d use the modern equivalent of these rare vintage drivers, but that’s doable.