H&G: Voltaic Visions

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Imagine listening to music emanating from a vintage suitcase, especially if it’s the music of Johnny Cash or Loretta Lynn who may have carried a suitcase from that era while boarding a tour bus in the middle of the night destined for yet another city.

It’s possible because creator, builder and salvager Matt Marti has a side project turning vintage treasures into wireless speakers.

He said he was sitting around the fire with friends one day, listening to music on a wireless speaker and he was inspired to make something that sounded better, looked cooler and would last longer.

“It’s about making something,” said Marti, the local creator behind Voltaic Visions.

A tinker by nature, he collects old speakers and incorporates new wiring and Bluetooth capabilities. He also collects old suitcases and artillery cases, anything that could be transformed into a speaker case.

He can bring to life antique radios, and recently found a bunch of drive-in speakers that are about 50-60 years old and was pleasantly surprised to discover they still work.

Marti said he has always liked to build, driven by curiosity to disassemble gadgets and putting them back together to see how they work.

As a stay-at-home dad who is also a carpenter and computer engineer, he has been working on his family’s off-the-grid home on the outskirts of Creemore for the past five years, building everything himself.

He is all about making something from scratch. He wires all the electronics, wrote the code and even built the battery welder himself. The only thing he buys assembled is the amplifier.

“Everything I make is made out of some parts that I find,” said Marti. He is always on the lookout for finds online and at flea markets. He said sometimes he will pick up something that inspires him even though he’s not exactly sure what he will do with it. And then one day, he’ll see it.

Part of the appeal is that he makes something old useful again and also keeps parts out of the landfill. For example, he bought a used battery pack taken from a TTC hybrid bus, disassembled it and uses the individual battery cells to power the speakers.

Voltaic Visions is on Instagram and speakers are for sale at Tierra Hermosa Local Market and Colours of Creemore.

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