Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Trellis Equipment Rack from Splintr Designs

I was able to borrow the Trellis equipment rack we used in the Unison/Opera room at CES last week. We're using two Trellis racks at our next trade show--the AXPONA show in Chicago in March--so it made sense to break down the CES rack and take it back to Texas for a couple of months. While we struggled to make the entire rack and hardware fit into the two smallish supplied boxes (we forgot to watch the guys from Splintr Designs unpack the rack and set it up), once I got back to Texas and unpacked it I found the rack incredibly easy to reassemble.

The Trellis racks are unusually attractive and well-designed. Because they are manufactured with a CNC machine, tolerances are tight and everything fits together with uncommon precision. Each shelf insert, made from heavy wood, has small rubber plugs at the corners to decouple it from the rack. Small cones are then used to control vibrations between each section of the rack, and larger, beautifully machined cones rest under the bottom section, which can also be used as an amp stand.

After unpacking all the pieces, I had the rack assembled and leveled in less than ten minutes. This particular rack is in maple. The Trellis equipment racks start at $1950, so with the upgrades this four-shelf rack will retail for roughly $2900. Splintr makes the Trellis racks in a wide variety of finishes, including some very exotic types, all which will increase the price. The shelf inserts are also available in a choice of woods, manufactured rock and granite which again drives up the price. But while the Trellis racks may seem pricey to those still using Expedit furniture from IKEA for their sound systems, these racks are actually a great value compared to some high-end audio racks that can cost well into the five-figure range.

We used the Trellis racks at both CES and the Rocky Mountain Audio Fest last October, and the majority of show attendees commented that the prices were extremely reasonable. I did have one gentleman in Vegas ask me point-blank why the racks were so expensive. I started off by explaining the high cost of a CNC machine, and his eyes seem to glaze over. So I wound up saying "They're not expensive at all."

As you can see, the additional Trellis rack gives me a lot of flexibility in my listening room. I've had a ton of equipment flow in and out of my system in the weeks leading up to CES, and it's been a royal pain to store this equipment all over the house when it's not in use. Now I can just leave it all on the rack. I'm set to receive the new preamplifier and monoblock amplifiers from PureAudio in the next few days, and now I have the room for all those amps.

If you'd like more information about Splintr Designs and the Trellis equipment racks, just visit their website.


  1. Very handsome. What's it do to the sound of the system?

  2. Hard to say...I made so many changes to the system after CES that it's difficult to attribute anything specific to the Trellis. I will say that the Trellis couples well to the floor and is far more stable than my other racks from Target and Quadraspire.