Struer, Denmark--Just by looking across the room, could you tell the difference between your VCR, tape deck, receiver, or CD player? They're all in flat black boxes with controls--usually too many--on the front.
Nobody could mistake Bang & Olufsen's BeoSound 9000 for anything but what it is: a sleek CD player.
"BeoSound 9000 is a revolt against indifference and black boxes," says David Lewis, award-winning designer for Bang & Olufsen. "The way things have become, you can hardly tell whether you are looking at a toaster or a typewriter."
Launched this summer, the BeoSound 9000 can be positioned seven different ways, such as vertically on a floor stand, horizontally on the wall, or placed on a shelf. No matter how you orient the unit, you can unplug and turn around the concealed operating panel for your convenience. The 12-character display flips to read the way the control panel does.
The CD carriage contains the playing mechanism. Press the button for CD 6, and the carriage whisks quickly yet silently to that disk. It moves so fast that you need wait no more than 4.5 seconds from the current song to one selected on any other disk. In fact, the carriage would hit sports car speeds of 100 km/hour within 5.8 seconds, if the rails were only long enough.
Best of all, the BeoSound 9000 lets you choose your CD music visually. Not only can you see which discs are loaded, you can replace the discs not being played without stopping the music. And, after playing a song, the carriage replaces the CD to within one degree of how you placed it in the holder. You can store this position, as well as the name of the disc and your favorite tracks, in the system's 200-disc memory.
The visual appeal of the player disguises the high level of technology that makes this performance possible. Eight digital servo systems, five microprocessors, five dc motors, six digital-to-analog converters, and 15 IR sensors work behind the scenes to bring you a music system that appeals to the eye and the ear.