Loewe brings Mimi and portable klang
We found Loewe’s stand at IFA 2018 all in a breakfast bustle just as the Show opened its doors, and the friendly and attentive staff showed us the German TV-meisters’ latest innovations, which included what it’s describing as “the world’s first television with integrated sound personalisation.”
Loewe is not a company to change its TV models every year as do many competitors — the only hardware changes announced this year were that its OLED bild TV models will all be upgraded to the latest generation of OLED panels. It also showed a series of colour frame designs (pictured above) but told us these are, for the moment, a concept rather than a new product line.
But of course Loewe does make a habit of upgrading the TVs already owned by its existing customers, via the power of the firmware update. And we were intrigued to spot a logo that we had seen before — the wavy lines of ‘Mimi Defined’. We’d seen this only the day before, when beyerdynamic launched a new corporate identity and new headphones, several of which include the Mimi Defined technology (see right).
Mimi Defined is a German-grown technology which uses a hearing test that takes about six minutes to determine if one ear hears better than the other, as well as how response varies across a broad range of frequencies. Then it uses the results to adjust the sound to the way it would be if you didn’t have any hearing deficiencies.
This might sound more applicable to solo headphone listening than TV sound, but Loewe explained to us how it has applied the technology to its TVs, even when multiple viewers are present.
The software update, which they hope will roll out in October (with possible variations by region and model), will allow three ways of defining your Mimi profile.
The first is to use the existing Mimi app to define your profile and then to load that information across to the Loewe TV’s software.
The second is simply to select a general profile for age — this is necessarily less personalised, but surprisingly effective, we are told (Mimi has worked extensively with audiologists to build up a bank of profiles). This solution can also be used for multiple viewers by averaging their ages.
The third option will see the Mimi test incorporated directly into the Loewe Companion app to be applied through the TV interface. And of course in the Loewe OS user interface, Mimi Defined can be switched on and off via the Sound settings menu, and adjusted by remote control.
Also on show was Loewe’s petite new portable speaker, the klang M1, a Bluetooth speaker which recently took home a Gold iF Design award. It offers around 12 hours of operation, able to be stereo paired if you have two, and available in three colours — including a premium and rather fetching rose gold (below), each with a sturdy leather strap. Euro pricing is €149 for the standard finishes and €199 for the rose gold.
Loewe is distributed in Australia by Indi Imports: www.indimports.com