Sounding off for i-Station nation; W. Boylston firm markets top-selling iPod speaker.


Byline: Martin Luttrell The following correction was published Dec. 27, 2006: E.B. Carlson Marketing Inc. of West Boylston distributes a sound system and docking station manufactured by Logic3 for Sony's PlayStation Portable games. A reporting error in yesterday's Telegram & Gazette misidentified the Sony product. The Game Boy is made by Nintendo. -------------------- WEST BOYLSTON - Edwin B. Carlson smiled as he recalled a recent telephone call from a production coordinator for the NBC medical sitcom "Scrubs." He ordered 170 of the Logic3 i-Station speaker systems that Mr. Carlson's companies market and distribute in North America, to be given out as holiday gifts for the show's cast and crew. Despite limited advertising, sales of the i-Station line have taken off, making it the best-selling speaker system for Apple Computer's iPod portable media player last month, and earning acclaim for its performance. For Mr. Carlson, the icing on the cake was news that "Scrubs" would place the i-Station in upcoming episodes - when one of the show's characters moves into a new apartment, and with the speaker system set up in an operating room. Until now, the Logic3 products were only advertised in a few consumer publications and had been mentioned as gift ideas in some magazines and newspapers. But the online publication iLounge gave the i-Station7 docking station top marks for iPod speakers, and listed the i-Station 3 and original i-Station among its top 12 speaker systems. That kind of exposure, along with word of mouth, can pay off big, especially with younger consumers who don't give as much consideration to conventional advertising. Mr. Carlson, of Princeton, started E.B. Carlson Marketing Inc. in 1990 as a manufacturer's representative firm, and expanded its companies and products, he said. He created an affiliated company, EBC Marketing Inc., to handle the distribution of products and hired a fulfillment company to outsource that portion of the operation, he said. Mr. Carlson is president of EBC, and David W. Rhodes of Bolton is vice president of sales and marketing. Norman St. Jacques, a partner in E.B. Carlson Marketing, now runs that part of the enterprise. The companies have a total of nine additional employees. In 2003 the British firm Logic3 called to say it had a speaker system for the increasingly popular iPod, and offered to make Mr. Carlson's companies the sole marketers and distributors in North...

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