Kicker introduced at the CES Show a new audiophile, top end line, three years in the making, called the Elite Q-Class, which includes a Bluetooth amplifier specific to the car.
The line also includes an L7 square subwoofer plus a family of L7 loaded enclosures. The L7 subwoofer won a 2015 Innovation award.
The new amplifiers use a separate module for Bluetooth and they work with a free Kicker TWEEQ app for adjusting digital sound processing. The amps can stream music from a phone, and provide hands free calling.
The amplifiers also include full DSP processing and OEM integration with channel summing and mixing. So if a user wants to keep a factory radio and add speakers, the amplifiers allow a simple way to add power and manage time alignment, compression and eq.
“We’ve taken a $700 processor and stuffed it into our high end amplifiers, making them easier to install and cheaper for the consumer,” said Kicker’s Joe Hobart, adding, “And they get a better signal push because you are using less devices.”
Through the iPhone, Android or desktop app, the DSP function can be set up in 2 minutes, said Hobart.
The Bluetooth module is about half the size of an iPhone (it works with Android and iPhone devices) and it runs Bluetooth 3.0 EDR. The module, called the IQ Interface, comes with a mic and buttons for handsfree calling and for controlling music (play, pause, track up/down).
Also new are top-end IQ component speakers.
The company says the line delivers on the promise of ” a sonic statement unique to each individual owner.”
Kicker will also market the new line through digital, print and social media with advertisements aimed at showing the users’ “emotional connection to music and leisure,” it said. Dealers will also get point of sale items to support the Q-Class.
Amplifier models include:
IQ1000.1 (1000w 2 Ohm mono) – SRP $1199.95
IQ500.1 (500w 2 Ohm mono) – SRP $699.95
IQ1000.5 (250wX4 stereo; 500wX1 mono) – SRP $1199.95
IQ500.4 4-ch (125wX4 2 Ohm stereo) – SRP $699.95
IQ500.2 (250wX2 2 Ohm stereo) – SRP $699.95
IQ Interface – MSRP $599.95
Kicker is displaying at CES in the North Hall booth 1719, January 6-9 at the Las Vegas Convention Center.