“Since the founding of Polk in 1972, it’s been our mission to craft high quality, great sounding speakers that are accessible to everyone. For the people of Polk, designing and building authentic audio solutions is our true passion.”
Polk is a manufacturer of audio products, specialising in home and automobile speakers. Headquartered in Baltimore, Maryland, it was founded by Matthew Polk, George Klopfer and Sandy Gross in 1972. Matthew, George and Sandy met each other while attending classes at The Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. After graduating in 1971, the team collaborated on producing a sound system for a local bluegrass convention. Matthew designed the speaker system while George built the cabinets. After it was discovered the producers of the convention could not afford to pay for the system, George designed a logo for Polk Audio and attached it to the speakers. Sandy was behind the marketing of Polk Audio and also helped create Polk's worldwide dealer network.
At the time, options for home audio were sort of limited. Asian brands dominated a transistor radio world. Home-grown “boutique” builders of audio equipment were few and far between in the US. What they made was rough, expensive and impractical. Wanting to experience a concert-like experience within the comforts of their home, they decided to dabble in home theatres. With the release of the first successful model in 1974, the Monitor 7, Polk Audio started to become a recognized name in audiophile circles. Polk used a two way configuration on the vast majority of its speakers like the popular Monitor 10 and Monitor 12, typically with high performance 6.5" mid/bass drivers with rubber surrounds and passive radiators. The Monitor 12 was quite capable for its day, having bass response to 18 Hz, a free-air mounted tweeter and 500 watt RMS power handling.
Polk remains a home-grown success story. As the largest audio brand of DEI Holdings, Polk is still proudly based in Baltimore, right where they started. The engineers and designers over there now hold more than 65 patents for pioneering advances in audio design and technology. These innovations have influenced the audio industry many times over.
The speaker models uses arrays of drivers, called SDA for Stereo Dimensional Array, to modify the crosstalk from the left speaker to the right ear and from the right speaker to the left ear, so as to expand the stereo image beyond the space between two stereo speakers. The SDA concept is still used in some current Polk branded speaker products.
Other than that, they also make high end automobile speakers, wireless, headphones, and so on and so forth.
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