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Renkus-Heinz founder reflects on the pro audio industry at 90

Harro Heinz, the co-founder of Renkus-Heinz, celebrated his 90th birthday on 14th December, which falls within the 40th year of the company that bears his name.

Heinz founded the speaker company with Algis Renkus in 1979. A few years later Heinz bought his partner out of the business and went on to build the company. Heinz remains part of the company and still holds office hours as the chairman of Renkus-Heinz. He is joined at work by three generations of the Heinz family and is involved in all aspects of the business, from engineering to manufacturing – each of which still occurs in-house at the Orange County headquarters.

Looking back at 40 years of the company, Heinz had these thoughts:

Artificial Intelligence is coming to professional audio sooner than we expect

“We will very soon see a speaker that can be installed in a room and immediately configure itself to provide optimal sound,” Heinz said. “The technology to digitally steer sound will soon be considered the standard because of how effectively it can be placed in a space.”

The focus will be increasingly on the audience

“When we look at the industry today we still see a lot of focus on the performers or the product,” Heinz said. “That’s important, of course, as you have to have great content. But more important is that we look at the audience we serve, understand what they want, and deliver impressive experiences to them. Positioning sound with precision – and putting it on the audience – positions businesses for success.”

The future of pro audio – and visual – belongs to the inventors

“We see commoditisation continue in the audio world,” Heinz said. “What will set successful companies apart – whether they be manufacturers or integrators – will be the level of intelligence they can put behind their products and solutions. The future of AV belongs to those willing to experiment.”