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Beale Street Audio P4-BB In-Wall and ICS8-MB In-Ceiling Speakers Preview

Beale Street Audio at CEDIA 2015

Beale Street Audio at CEDIA 2015


  • Product Name: P4-BB; ICS8-MB
  • Manufacturer: Beale Street Audio
  • Review Date: November 11, 2015 11:00
  • MSRP: $TBD
  • First Impression: Gotta Have It!
  • Woofer: 4" Ribbed Polypropylene Cone
  • Tweeter: 3/4" Aluminum Dome
  • Surround: Butyl Rubber
  • Cutout:  8.4" (214 mm)
  • Grille Diameter: 9.5" (241.4 mm)
  • Depth: 2.76" (70.2 mm)
  • Impedance: 8Ω
  • Frequency/Crossover setting: Full Range Only
  • Sensitivity: 88dB


Beale Street Audio is a relatively new speaker company. I saw their booth at CEDIA in 2014, but figured it was just “another” new speaker company – and the last thing the industry needs is another speaker company. But one of Audioholics’ other reviewers is outfitting his entire home with Beale Street in-ceiling speakers and subs, so I figured there must be something special about them. After visiting their booth, I now think this the industry does need this speaker company.

Beale’s twist on speaker design, and it is a real twist, involves and old and well-known technology, an acoustic transmission line. At the risk of oversimplifying the idea, you can think of a transmission line like a really long port on a speaker. Most commonly, transmission line speakers force the sound created on the back side of a driver through a long duct and then out of the speaker enclosure. By adjusting the length and size of the duct, the designer can manipulate which frequencies are boosted from the transmission line and how much they boosted.

Biele Audio in-ceiling speakers

Beale Street Audio In-Ceiling Speakers

What Beale audio has done is integrate transmission line speakers into the enclosures for in-ceiling and in-wall speakers. The sound coming off the back of the speaker driver, or divers, is routed through six tubes that wrap around the outside of the speaker and create the speaker enclosure. The ports eventually fire out the front of the speaker. They call this Sonic Vortex technology, which pulls double duty by increasing bass output and preventing sound coming off the back of the speaker from traveling into other rooms.

At CEDIA, they were showing off brand new two-way in-ceiling/in-wall, full range “Pancake” speakers that measure only two and three quarter inches deep. These are ideal for the European market and in cities or other places where ceiling or wall depth can present installation challenges. Currently, two models in the Pancake series will be available with more planned for the future. The P4-BB is an in-ceiling/in-wall ultra-thin speaker that features a four inch two-way Carbon Fiber woofer and three-quarter inch Titanium tweeter. The IPLCR4-BB is a LCR speaker that features two four inch Carbon Fiber woofers and a three-quarter inch Titanium tweeter.

Beale Audio pancake speakers

Beale Audio PF-BB and IPLCR4-BB pancake speakers

Thanks to the Sonic Vortex technology, the enclosure is actually a compact, integrated, tuned cabinet that offers a ‘twist’ on Ported Transmission Line design to produce bigger sound than you might expect from a 2 ¾-inch deep speaker.

But How Does it Sound?

We were able to listen to a demo of the P4-BB, and it was pretty impressive. Part way through the demo they turned on their 8” in-ceiling subwoofer, model number ICS8-MB. I actually thought they had turned on a stand alone subwoofer before I looked and saw it was an in-ceiling model. The CEDIA floor was pretty noisy, so I wasn’t able to do any critical listening, but from what I heard this is a promising company with a great truly innovative approach to in-ceiling speakers. We are looking forward to doing a comprehensive review of this speaker package used in a full fledged Atmos/DTS:X installation so stay tuned for more details and listening tests done in a controlled listening environment.

Unless otherwise indicated, this is a preview article for the featured product. A formal review may or may not follow in the future.

About the author:
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Cliff, like many of us, has always loved home theater equipment. In high school he landed a job at Best Buy that started his path towards actual high quality audio. His first surround sound was a Klipsch 5.1 system. After that he was hooked, moving from Klipsch to Polk to Definitive Technology, and so on. Eventually, Cliff ended up doing custom installation work for Best Buy and then for a "Ma & Pa" shop in Mankato, MN.

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