The level of fit and finish, from the outrigger feet to the magnetic grille, right through to the protection over the gold dome tweeter, all suggests a loudspeaker of quality and distinction. The review pair came in a sophisticated gloss black, but gloss white, black and natural oak, and walnut veneers are also available. This is a very effective system of continual development, used by everyone from Apple to Zildjian and is fairly common among larger companies in the audio business.
They are incredibly unfussy as to position and partners, they are both insightful and yet forgiving of content, they are expressive, dynamic, and most of all, fun. The fun factor is perhaps the most pivotal part of this: a lot of audio equipement seems to have had its fun gland removed somewhere along the way, making music some kind of spiritual exercise for the benefit of mankind.
The Silver never does that, as it is too busy enjoying whatever music you feed it. Those 19 years dissolved in seconds and I was dancing round like a loon to the track.
That fun definitely comes from the dynamic range, which is — for the money — unbelieveably good. They are fast, I mean really, really fast. Not quite Raidho fast or Eclipse fast, but they are a lot cheaper than both. Transients and plosives from speech have that sense of immediacy that is hard to find and reassuring to hear, making the speaker sound less like a loudspeaker and more like a direct-injected microphone into an electrostatic or planar magnetic driver. Then next is timing.
In fact, this can be a subtle and refined performer as well. You do receive a selection of foam bungs if you need to position the cabinets closer still or if a smaller room demands it. The speakers provide two rear ports, HiVe II flow-tuned. The upper midrange and tweeter cones are physically separated within their own enclosed area. The drivers themselves consist of two mm RST bass driers.
Above those is a single mm midrange RST driver with an underhung voice coil , topped by a 25mm Gold Dome tweeter. Bi-Wiring is an option with plates supplied for single-wired connection. I can imagine a greying-templed pin striped-suited chap resting one elbow on the top of these speakers, Financial Times under one arm and pointing in the distance at his profit margin. They have that sort of speaker feel about them. My first reaction upon listening to this track was to check the price of these speakers because, in general terms, they sound mature, rich in tone and rather more expensive than the sale price.
Properly positioned, the s offer a beautifully balanced soundstage, a vanishing stereo image with a 3D tiled effect that positioned vocals over and under and behind the various instruments, providing a sound that was both complex as it was clear. That sense of transparency allowed the ear to easily explore every corner of the soundstage, which was large, impressively structured, big and bold.
There is a light that shines a touch on the mids and bass during high volumes. That said, this effect also aids the transient performance of the speakers which turn on a nail head, stopping and starting with the cartoon Roadrunner-like manoeuvrability.
In bass terms, I was impressed by its mass. That is, bass offered a firm and weighted foundation throughout the track. Not at all. Lower frequencies were highly informative and articulate with a surprising focus that enabled the ear to track a welcome complexity in this area. The s were able to present each on a platter which added to the sheer fun of listening, just to see what the s would discover next.
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