CI: What topline trends are you seeing regarding the drive to bring high-quality audio from boardroom and enterprise environments into the home for remote workers?
Bob Moreau: Basically, since the beginning of the pandemic, we’ve seen a lot of people complain about the lack of good sound and intelligibility. And, as we both know, if you have a meeting for 20 minutes or half an hour, if the sound is not quite up to par, you can get a lot of brain fatigue trying to understand the people at the far side. So, that’s been a big focus for us, and that’s what we’ve been trying to address. We’ve been working on a new platform — a USB platform — to bring some of the solutions that have been proven over the years, which we use in boardrooms, huddle rooms and similar environments, and apply them into smaller office settings and also in home applications. So, the exciting part is, you now have the same flexibility as our Dante platform in terms of microphone options, but in a USB format that can connect directly to your computer.
CI: Tell me a little bit about the value proposition of the CUI2, which is well suited for workers looking for simplicity and versatility.
Moreau: The CUI2 is basically a little bit of a hybrid. Instead of coming out with one USB-type microphone for home, we wanted to give the user more flexibility. Because every home environment is different, just like every office is different. So, going back to the past, our motto has always been that we don’t want to limit the possibilities. So, now, with the CUI2, you can use any type of condenser microphone from Clockaudio. You can use any type of control device from Clockaudio — so, with the RGB rings and the switch. And you can really customize, to your environment and your needs. And that’s the beauty of it.
So, it is integrator-centric. And, for people at home who want something a little bit more sophisticated, they can do that. And, again, they now have a lot of options.
CI: Now, the CUB33 is even simpler, suiting people who don’t want an install that’s going to be more involved. Tell me about that.
Moreau: Not everybody’s going to want to drill a hole in their nice table or want to do modifications. Some people are looking for more of a plug-and-play type of a product. So, the CUB33 is using pretty much the same type of interface as the CUI2. The only difference is that it has a permanent microphone on it, with a semi-rigid gooseneck and a C3 cardioid capsule, which is one of our signature capsules. And the beauty of this package is that it also can give you a lot of visual cues. So, you have a nice view-meter that can be activated on the screen. And, so, you see if you’re overloading. Obviously, you don’t hear yourself when you’re communicating with somebody on the far side, but they hear if you’re distorting. So, you now have visual cues to help you.
The other thing is the display is rather large, so you can really see if you’re on, or if you’re muted. It gives you flexibility also if you want to have your microphone, for example, push-to-mute. So, it’s always on you — just push to mute the microphone if you have to cough or something like that. Or, you can have it latching. But the cool thing is that it mutes locally within the unit. So, you’re sure that if the display shows you are muted, the mic is off. You have full privacy. The other great thing about this unit is that it’s one USB cable. You connect that to your laptop or computer of choice, and you’re up and running. It’s as simple as that.
CI: What is the timeline of availability for these products?
Moreau: Well, the CUI2 is presently in stock and available. The CUB33 launched at ISE in Barcelona. And it became available about two weeks after that.
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