Fyne

SINGLE POINT SOURCE DRIVER TECHNOLOGY (coaxial) loudspeakers from Scotland.
Our goal - designing and manufacturing an exceptional range of high performance loudspeakers.

200 YEARS' EXPERIENCE. - Fyne was a great opportunity born out of the demise of real Tannoy (when sold to a Chinese consortium). Fyne’s 5 founder members: Andrzej Sosna-MD, ex Mgr Director at Tannoy, Max Maud-Sales & Marketing Director, ex Sales Mgr at Tannoy, Dr Paul Mills-Technical Director, ex Engineering Director at Tannoy, (original coaxial driver designer), Gabriel O’Donahue-Operations Director, ex Factory Mgr Tannoy, have collectively over 200 years’ experience and really caused a stir in the market with multiple 5 star press and awards and over 50 distributors in such a short time frame. Fyne are team players with the passion and creative skills to achieve thier goal of designing and manufacturing an exceptional range of high performance loudspeakers. 

Their over 200 years experience is really is evident when you sit down and listen to any of their speakers, they really perform way above their price point, and are packed with innovative ideas but most importantly they are extremely musical, you will be impressed. Fyne Audio have succeeded in significantly updating and enhancing the Single Point-Source (Coaxial) driver without diluting its original musical appeal.

FYNE AUDIO SPEAKER RANGE:
F300 series - 7 models from $450/pr - $1,395/pr
F500 series - 5 models from $1,495/pr - $4,995/pr
F700 series - 5 models from $13,995 - $TBA
F1 series - 3 models from $41,995/pr - $TBA
F3 Subwoofer series - 3 models from - $995ea - $1,750ea
FA300 In-Celing coaxial speakers - 5 models from - $275ea - $600ea

SINGLE POINT SOURCE DRIVER TECHNOLOGY (coaxial by another name)
Point source driver technology is not new to Fyne Audio. Our technical team, responsible for the audio performance and mechanical build of the driver, have many decades of experience between them. Our proprietary IsoFlareTM design ensures constant directivity of the wave front generated, providing outstanding stereo imaging, even off axis. Furthermore, a smooth and extended response is delivered thanks to the highly rigid titanium high frequency diaphragm which pushes the break up mode well above the level of human hearing.

PERFORMANCE 
To fully optimise the driver’s performance, every aspect of the meticulous design has been considered. A vented rear chamber in the Neodymium HF magnet places low frequency resonance well below crossover region. The unique geometry of the high frequency unit’s waveguide provides a flat frequency response and avoids internal reflections. To eliminate unwanted vibrations, which would be detrimental to the sound quality, both the point source driver and the supplementary low frequency driver fitted to the floor standing models, are built around a rigid cast aluminium chassis. Multifibre paper cones are used providing natural sounding midrange and clean transient behaviour. Cone energy is then very effectively terminated using a fluted rubber surround.

OUR TECHNOLOGIES
Our experienced team of acoustic and mechanical design engineers have been in the loudspeaker business for very many years. Since coming together to form FYNE AUDIO, they have been busy honing their existing skills and developing technologies to ensure that we can offer best in class performance at all price levels.

ISOFLARETM
FYNE AUDIO’S IsoFlareTM driver is a point source system whereby the bass / midrange driver shares a common centre with the high frequency unit. Providing outstanding stereo imaging, even off axis, energy is radiated isotropically with constant directivity, following the flare of the driver cone. Sound is produced as if emanating from a single point in space.
Designed and developed in-house at the company’s Glasgow R&D facility, the IsoFlare driver is Fyne Audio’s ideal type of coaxial drive unit. Designer Dr. Paul Mills explains that it is a true point-source where the mid/bass driver shares a common centre with the high-frequency unit, noting: “The complete audio spectrum radiates isotropically from the driver, giving a spherical wavefront, and the phase response is more linear (constant group delay) than a discrete driver configuration. Also, it better preserves the harmonic structure of complex sounds.” Having previously worked with countless drive units at Tannoy, he is highly experienced in optimising it. Fyne Audio’s IsoFlare uses a rigid cast aluminium chassis that’s light so doesn’t store energy. This marries to a bespoke multi-fibre cone with a FyneFlute surround, and the light and stiff magnesium dome. There’s a vented rear chamber in the neodymium tweeter magnet, which is designed to place low-frequency resonance well below the crossover region. The unique geometry of the tweeter’s waveguide is said to provide a flat frequency response while avoiding internal reflections. The end result is a drive unit that generates exceptional stereo imaging, with less dependency on room placement in order to give of its very best

BASSTRAXTM TRACTRIX DIFFUSER SYSTEM
The BassTraxTM Tractrix profile is known to maintain a 90 degree angle at each intersection of the expanding wavefront, thus avoiding reflections. This clever arrangement makes the loudspeaker less critical of room positioning.

                                                              MEET THE FYNE "F300" ENTRY LEVEL SERIES
The price may be entry level but the F300 range benefits from the very best technical and acoustic expertise in the loudspeaker industry. Offering a scale of specification and audiophile performance unrivalled at its price, the line-up provides versatility for music lovers or movie enthusiasts. With a choice of two bookshelf or stand-mount models, two floorstanders, a centre channel and an LCR speaker, there are plenty of options to suit a wide variety of listening environments.

F300 CABINET
A well-constructed cabinet is the starting point for any high-performance loudspeaker. Exceptional rigidity is provided on all F300 models through a combination of MDF panels which are cross-braced internally. Additional stiffness is achieved by coupling the low frequency driver’s magnet to the cabinet bracing using a resonant-absorbing mastic. Widening the footprint on the floor standing models, using a plinth with floor coupling spikes, provides stability for tight bass and accurate stereo imaging.

F300 CROSSOVER
Optimal performance of each of the F300 models is assured by using high quality precision components within the crossover, including low loss LF laminated core inductor and HF polypropylene capacitors. Although the designs are computer optimised, fine-tuning is always undertaken through critical auditioning. The gold-plated speaker terminals ensure a clean signal path and the top of the range F303 has bi-wire terminals fitted to further enhance performance.

F300 DRIVER TECHNOLOGY
Fyne Audio aims to provide best in class performance at all price levels and the careful component selection for the F300 drivers helps to meet this goal. Utilising a multifibre paper cone on the bass / midrange drivers delivers a natural sounding midrange and clean transient behaviour. Fitted to the centre of the driver is a phase plug which provides smooth midrange roll-off characteristics. FyneFluteTM technology, used on the driver’s roll rubber surround, provides a non-homogeneous interface which very effectively terminates cone energy.

F300 TWEETER
The tweeter combines a powerful Neodymium magnet system with a 25mm Polyester dome producing crisp and controlled high frequency detail. Integrated within the protective mesh cover is a phase loss compensator which delays the output from specific areas of the dome to give a smooth and extended response.

                                               MEET THE FYNE "F500" SINGLE POINT SOURCE SERIES
The F500 series is based around an IsoFlareTM point source drive unit; technology which our Technical Director, Dr. Paul Mills, is reknown for. Our technical team, responsible for the audio performance and mechanical build of this type of driver, have many decades of experience between them. Combining Fyne Audio’s IsoFlareTM driver into a rigid cabinet, with a cleverly designed porting system, ensures optimal in-room performance. Floor standing models in the F500 series use a rigid MDF plinth with large floor coupling spikes giving stability to ensure well-controlled bass performance and further enhancing stereo imaging. Additionally, the spikes can be adjusted from above the plinth allowing easier levelling of the speaker. The cabinets are crafted using real wood veneers and are available in choice of Dark Oak, Black Oak, Piano Gloss Black and Piano Gloss White.

BASSTRAXTM PORT SYSTEM
The bookshelf and floorstanding models employ an internal, downwards-firing port system. Below the port, a Tractrix profile diffuser (patent applied for) converts plain wave port energy to a spherical 360-degree wave front, integrating energy uniformly into the room. This clever design ensures that the loudspeaker is less critical of room positioning.

CROSSOVER
Low-loss, laminated core inductors and audiophile-grade polypropylene capacitors are used exclusively throughout the F500 series crossovers. The result is an exceptionally clean signal path and very low crossover losses, ensuring the very best in detail resolution and musical communication.

HOME THEATRE
The F500 range is as impressive with movies as it is music. FYNE AUDIO’s point source driver technology is ideal for articulating the finest of movie detail with pin-point accuracy. High efficiency and high-power handling means the F500 series delivers an incredibly dynamic and lifelike performance whether you are listening to DTS Master Audio or Dolby True HD.
                                               MEET THE FYNE "700" SINGLE POINT SOURCE SERIES
Refined, elegant and powerful, the F700 is a five strong series of audiophile loudspeakers combining the best of Fyne Audio’s extensive acoustic know how and engineering excellence. Fyne IsoFlare drivers are at the heart of every F700 model, featuring a coaxially mounted high-power compression HF driver set within a mid/bass cone featuring rigid multi-fibre construction and FyneFlute™ roll surround. The result is true point source isotropic radiation for unsurpassed imaging. 

The F700 bookshelf model offers a 6” (150mm) IsoFlare unit The F701 uses a 200mm (8”) version and comes supplied with matching stands designed to enhance performance. 

The F702, F703 and flagship F704 floorstanding models are designed to deliver realistic scale in the largest of rooms, featuring 200mm (8”), 250mm (10”) and 300mm (12”) IsoFlare drive units respectively, each model delivers outstanding LF extension and power thanks to a dedicated additional bass driver. 

Luxury piano high gloss lacquer, applied to black, white or walnut veneer, is the finishing touch to all F700 cabinets. 
Constructed from high density birch plywood chosen for extremely low sonic colouration, and precision curved to reduce internal standing waves, each cabinet is meticulously hand-built and hand-finished to exacting standards. 
The three floorstanding models in the F700 series use a twin cavity ported design and Fyne’s exclusive BassTrax LF diffuser constructed into the striking aluminium plinths. The system creates a 360 degree LF wavefront for unrivalled bass integration in any room. 

Within the crossovers, low loss inductors, Claritycap high end capacitors and Van den Hul® high purity silver plated internal wiring is used throughout the F700 range. The entire crossover is Deep Cryogenically Treated to relieve micro-stress in components, wiring and solder to further maximise acoustic transparency. The bi-wired terminal panel uses high-quality gold-plated link cables and features a fifth driver-grounding terminal to minimise potential interference from the external speaker cabling circuit.  

The Fyne Audio F700 series loudspeakers set new standards for loudspeaker design, finish and performance, delivering truly outstanding musical scale and precision in luxury cabinets that will enhance any home décor. 

                                              MEET THE "F1 - MASTER CLASS" SINGLE POINT SOURCE SERIES
The F1-10 is the first model in our high end F1 series. The design is truly unique and the innovative feature list is outstanding. From the massive 16kg plinth to the intricate burr walnut inlay on the front and top of the cabinet, every element of the loudspeaker has been meticulously considered to ensure stunning audio performance combined with exquisite aesthetic appeal.

The first finish available will be a luxurious high gloss walnut with burr walnut inlay on the front baffle and the top of the speaker. The high density pressed birch ply with extensive internal bracing provides exceptional structural rigidity for low colouration.

A heavy weight machined aluminium platform, provides exceptional stability for precise low frequency performance and resolution of fine detail and also integrates port energy to the room. Heavy duty support cones, adjustable from above enable precise levelling while machined aluminium cups provide protection for wooden floors.

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Reviews

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All Products

Book Shelf/Stand Mtg

FY 01 SB F300
NZ$ 450.00 pr (incl. GST)
MEET THE F300 SERIESThe price may be entry level but the F300 range benefits from the very best technical and acoustic expertise in the loudspeaker industry. Offering a scale of specification...
Book Shelf/Stand Mtg
FY 02 SB F301
NZ$ 595.00 pr (incl. GST)
MEET THE F300 SERIESThe price may be entry level but the F300 range benefits from the very best technical and acoustic expertise in the loudspeaker industry. Offering a scale of specification...
REVIEW: A group of ex-Tannoy engineers bring their experience to bear on a new speaker brand. ...
Book Shelf/Stand Mtg
FY 15 SB F500
NZ$ 1,495.00 pr (incl. GST)
MEET THE F500 SERIESThe F500 series is based around an IsoFlareTM point source drive unit; technology which our Technical Director, Dr. Paul Mills, is reknown for. Our technical team,...
FLARE FOR DESIGNDesigned and developed in-house at the company’s Glasgow R&D facility, the...
Fyne Audio Loudspeakers: Something Old, Something New
Book Shelf/Stand Mtg
FY 25 SB F700
NZ$ 6,995.00 pr (incl. GST)
MEET THE F700 SERIESRefined, elegant and powerful, the Fyne Audio F700 series sets new benchmarks in loudspeaker performance and aesthetic design. Built in the UK with Fyne’s innovative point...
FLARE FOR DESIGNDesigned and developed in-house at the company’s Glasgow R&D facility, the...
Book Shelf/Stand Mtg
FY 26 SB F701
NZ$ 11,995.01 pr (incl. GST)
A NEW MODEL DUE FOR RELEASE DURING 2019FYNE 700 SERIES
FLARE FOR DESIGNDesigned and developed in-house at the company’s Glasgow R&D facility, the...
Book Shelf/Stand Mtg

Floor Standing

FY 03 SF F302
NZ$ 995.00 pr (incl. GST)
MEET THE F300 SERIESThe price may be entry level but the F300 range benefits from the very best technical and acoustic expertise in the loudspeaker industry. Offering a scale of specification...
Homonyms hold the key to around 90 per cent of Dad jokes, and for that we must be grateful to our...
Floor Standing
FY 04 SF F303
NZ$ 1,395.00 pr (incl. GST)
MEET THE F300 SERIESThe price may be entry level but the F300 range benefits from the very best technical and acoustic expertise in the loudspeaker industry. Offering a scale of specification...
There’s something hypnotic about watching a master of their trade at work.
Floor Standing
FY 16 SF F501
NZ$ 2,995.00 pr (incl. GST)
MEET THE F500 SERIESThe F500 series is based around an IsoFlareTM point source drive unit; technology which our Technical Director, Dr. Paul Mills, is reknown for. Our technical team,...
FLARE FOR DESIGN Designed and developed in-house at the company’s Glasgow R&D facility, the...
REVIEW: Never heard of Fyne Audio? Don’t feel bad or in any way out of the loop - this is a very...
Floor Standing
FY 17 SF F502
NZ$ 3,995.00 pr (incl. GST)
MEET THE F500 SERIESThe F500 series is based around an IsoFlareTM point source drive unit; technology which our Technical Director, Dr. Paul Mills, is reknown for. Our technical team,...
FLARE FOR DESIGNDesigned and developed in-house at the company’s Glasgow R&D facility, the...
I have been wanting to listen to the Fyne Audio F502 floor standing speakers for a while now as I...
Floor Standing
FY 17 SF F502SP
NZ$ 8,495.00 pr (incl. GST)
INTRODUCING NEW MODEL F502SP (Special Production) - DUE FOR RELEASE MID 2019
FLARE FOR DESIGNDesigned and developed in-house at the company’s Glasgow R&D facility, the...
Fyne Audio Loudspeakers: Something Old, Something New
Floor Standing
FY 27 SF F702
NZ$ 13,995.01 pr (incl. GST)
MEET THE F700 SERIESRefined, elegant and powerful, the Fyne Audio F700 series sets new benchmarks in loudspeaker performance and aesthetic design. Built in the UK with Fyne’s innovative point...
FLARE FOR DESIGNDesigned and developed in-house at the company’s Glasgow R&D facility, the...
REVIEW: It’s hard to talk about Fyne Audio without mentioning Tannoy, simply because like Cyrus...
Floor Standing
FY 28 SF F703
NZ$ 18,995.00 pr (incl. GST)
MEET THE F700 SERIESRefined, elegant and powerful, the Fyne Audio F700 series sets new benchmarks in loudspeaker performance and aesthetic design. Built in the UK with Fyne’s innovative point...
FLARE FOR DESIGNDesigned and developed in-house at the company’s Glasgow R&D facility, the...
Floor Standing
FY 29 SF F704
NZ$ 23,995.00 pr (incl. GST)
A NEW MODEL DUE FOR RELEASE DURING 2019  
FLARE FOR DESIGNDesigned and developed in-house at the company’s Glasgow R&D facility, the...
Floor Standing
FY 35 SF F110
NZ$ 41,995.00 pr (incl. GST)
Meet the F1-10
FLARE FOR DESIGNDesigned and developed in-house at the company’s Glasgow R&D facility, the...
Floor Standing
FY 36 SF F110 W
NZ$ 45,995.00 pr (incl. GST)
Meet the F1-10
Floor Standing
FY 37 SF F112
NZ$ 58,995.00 pr (incl. GST)
Meet the NEW F1-12 The F1-12 is the 2nd model in our high end F1 series. The design is truly unique and the innovative feature list is outstanding.
Floor Standing
FY 38 SF F112 W
NZ$ 62,995.00 pr (incl. GST)
Meet the NEW F1-12 The F1-12 is the 2nd model in our high end F1 series. The design is truly unique and the innovative feature list is outstanding. From the massive 16kg plinth to the intricate burr...
Floor Standing

Home Theatre

FY 05 HT F300C
NZ$ 450.00 ea (incl. GST)
F302 FLOORSTAND SPEAKER
Home Theatre
FY 13 HT F302PK
NZ$ 2,750.00 set (incl. GST)
Fyne Audio F302 AV Speaker Package
Home Theatre
FY 14 HT F303PK
NZ$ 3,650.00 set (incl. GST)
Fyne Audio F303 AV Speaker Package
Home Theatre
FY 18 HT F500C
NZ$ 995.00 ea (incl. GST)
MEET THE F500 SERIESThe F500 series is based around an IsoFlareTM point source drive unit; technology which our Technical Director, Dr. Paul Mills, is reknown for. Our technical team,...
Home Theatre
FY 24 HT F502PK
NZ$ 7,295.00 set (incl. GST)
Fyne Audio F502 AV Speaker Package
Home Theatre

Sub Woofers

FY 08 SW F308
NZ$ 895.00 ea (incl. GST)
The Fyne Audio F3 Series subwoofers combine DDX Direct Digital amplification and DSP Potent, powerful and affordable, the F3-8 subwoofer delivers blockbuster bass performance from a compact and...
Sub Woofers
FY 09 SW F310
NZ$ 1,295.00 ea (incl. GST)
The Fyne Audio F3 Series subwoofers combine DDX Direct Digital amplification and DSP
Sub Woofers
FY 10 SW F312
NZ$ 1,695.00 ea (incl. GST)
The Fyne Audio F3-12 is an absolutely cracking subwoofer, and one that sets the bar high for the others in this roundup......... Home Cinema test/reveiw
REVIEW: FYNE AUDIO HAS a growing speaker lineup that includes the F300 entry-level series reviewed...
Sub Woofers

In-Wall / In-Ceiling

FY 11 SC FA301HI
NZ$ 275.00 ea (incl. GST)
FA300iC & FA500iC SERIES
In-Wall / In-Ceiling
FY 12 SC FA302HI
NZ$ 350.00 ea (incl. GST)
FA300iC & FA500iC SERIESLooking for a discreet multi-room or multi-channel audio system? Fyne Audio has borrowed award winning technology from its high end hi-fi speakers and re-...
In-Wall / In-Ceiling
FY 20 SC FA501HI
NZ$ 350.00 ea (incl. GST)
FA300iC & FA500iC SERIESLooking for a discreet multi-room or multi-channel audio system? Fyne Audio has borrowed award winning technology from its high end hi-fi speakers and re-...
In-Wall / In-Ceiling
FY 21 SC FA502HI
NZ$ 500.00 ea (incl. GST)
FA300iC & FA500iC SERIESLooking for a discreet multi-room or multi-channel audio system? Fyne Audio has borrowed award winning technology from its high end hi-fi speakers and re-...
In-Wall / In-Ceiling
FY 22 SC FA502LC
NZ$ 600.00 ea (incl. GST)
FA300iC & FA500iC SERIESLooking for a discreet multi-room or multi-channel audio system? Fyne Audio has borrowed award winning technology from its high end hi-fi speakers and re-...
In-Wall / In-Ceiling

Reviews

The Fyne Audio F3-12 is an absolutely cracking subwoofer, and one that sets the bar high for the others in this roundup. The fact that it undercuts some when it comes to price doesn’t do its chances any harm either...
HOME CINIMA CHOICE

SUMMARY: The recent arrival of Overlord on 4K Blu-ray provided the perfect opportunity to use the film’s dynamic soundtrack as demo fodder. The movie opens with a parachute drop over Normandy on the eve of D-Day and there is nothing subtle about the sound design. A barrage of flak greets the approaching aircraft, signalled by a seismic thump from the F3-12, perfectly timed to the visuals. An explosion tears through one of the planes; there’s nuance to the destruction.  

REVIEW: FYNE AUDIO HAS a growing speaker lineup that includes the F300 entry-level series reviewed in this issue [see page 50]. As part of that range, Fyne offers three subwoofers, of which the F3-12 is the largest and most expensive at £600. Yet it's also one of the more affordable subs in this grouptest, despite an impressive specification that sees a 12in driver tethered to a claimed 370W (and 520W peak) of Class D power. 

The F3-12 uses a rigid MDF cabinet in an ash black finish, and the build quality is good although styling is unadventurous. The design very much sings from the standard subwoofer hymn sheet. There’s only so much you can do when conceiving a speaker that is essentially a big black box, of course. 

It's a traditional sub too, with a single forward-firing long-throw woofer. Yet this is combined with a downward-facing port, making it the only ported model in our quartet. Subsequently, it’s also the heaviest and largest – standing tall while rivals adopt a more cubic aesthetic. 

Fyne Audio's DDX direct digital amplification not only provides plenty of grunt, but also boasts DSP control with
a Bass Boost feature aimed at the central LFE range of 30Hz-70Hz. 
Rear connections are basic, with just stereo line-level inputs and a mono LFE input, along with level and phase controls. As with all grouptest rivals, there are no EQ niceties or remote control here, but that's to be expected at the price point. There's also no crossover dial – the stereo input low-pass filter is set to 85Hz, while your AVR's bass management is used to set the crossover for the LFE feed. 

Cruise Control 

When I’m evaluating a sub, the first scene I always put on is the very beginning of Edge of Tomorrow (Blu-ray). Here there are two truly titanic bass notes that dive right down to  the lower registers, resulting in a sub-sonic experience that you can literally feel.
This tends to sort the wheat from the chaff as far as subwoofers go, and I was delighted to discover the F3-12 handles it like a pro. Its output is deep and well defined but also distortion-free, even as it fills the room 
with low-frequency energy.
The movie's repeated beach assault is 
another excellent test, and the F3-12’s ported driver produces plenty of bass weight as gunships fall from the sky and slam into the sand. The percussive kick of heavy gunfire and huge explosions are handled with skill, and the sub proves surprisingly nimble for a ported design, handling the transients extremely well.  And if you really want to test the capabilities of your sub, what’s better than a runaway train? The Blu-ray of Unstoppable boasts some impressive LFE that gives its wayward locomotive a realistic sense of heft, and again the F3-12 has the kind of low-end presence that makes it feel truly cinematic. 

The recent arrival of Overlord on 4K Blu-ray provided the perfect opportunity to use the film’s dynamic soundtrack as demo fodder. The movie opens with a parachute drop over Normandy on the eve of D-Day and there is nothing subtle about the sound design. A barrage of flak greets the approaching aircraft, signalled by a seismic thump from the F3-12, perfectly timed to the visuals. An explosion tears through one of the planes; there’s nuance to the destruction. 

Absolute Cracker 

The Fyne Audio F3-12 is an absolutely cracking subwoofer, and one that sets the bar high for the others in this roundup. The fact that it undercuts some when it comes to price doesn’t do its chances any harm either... 

They’re such an enthralling listen once the wick is properly lit,

SUMMARY: "They remain cogent and listenable to low volumes, but their vibrancy and excitement properly comes to the fore once the volume control nudges above ‘polite’. But they’re such an enthralling listen once the wick is properly lit, we doubt you’ll want to hear them at background levels anyway.

REVIEW: Never heard of Fyne Audio? Don’t feel bad or in any way out of the loop - this is a very new company.

And don’t be too down on what, at first glance, looks like a rather laboured brand-name - this new loudspeaker manufacturer’s Scottish background means the word ‘Fyne’ can be legitimately deployed without it being a pun that might soon grow tedious.

Fyne Audio has arrived fully formed, with two complete series of speakers (the F300 entry-level range and the F500 range from which these F501 are taken) plus a ‘statement’ (for which read ‘expensive’ ) speaker, the F1-10.

The F500 range consists of the F500 standmounting design (plus matching stands), two pairs of floorstanders (these F501s and the bigger, more expensive F502s), a centre speaker (F500C) and the F500FX dipole intended for use as rear speakers in a surround-sound set-up. And Fyne has a range of three subwoofers too.

That’s an extremely thorough debut for a company that’s starting from scratch. But it’s safe to say the F501s look, feel and, most crucially, sound more like the product of a company building on years of experience and expertise.

Build and features

At 98cm tall, 20cm wide and 32cm deep, the F501s are of unremarkable dimensions for a product of this type.

And in terms of build quality and finish, they’re exactly what a £1200 floor stander needs to be - that’s to say they’re sturdily made, from the chunky locking spikes beneath the substantial plinth all the way along the gently curved MDF-beneath-real-wood-veneer cabinets.

Finish is smooth and seamless - the veneer feels as good as it looks, and the shiny silver band above the port system at the bottom of the cabinet is subtle rather than showy.

On a technical level, the F501s are an intriguing combination of the predictable and the unusual.

It’s the broad strokes that are pretty predictable: a two-and-a-half way design utilising a 25mm tweeter, 15cm mid-bass driver and 15cm bass driver, nominal impedance of 8 ohms and 90dB sensitivity won’t raise any eyebrows at this kind of money.

But Fyne Audio has brought some interesting thinking to bear. The tweeter - a highly rigid titanium dome - sits in the throat of the mid-bass driver in an arrangement Fyne is calling IsoFlare.

This kind of point source design, intended to preserve the time-alignment and thus stereo imaging of the sound, is not unheard-of - but it demonstrates the sort of technical assurance start-up companies aren’t necessarily known for.

The bigger drivers are multifibre paper cones, with unusually sculpted surrounds. Fyne Audio calls this design FyneFlute, and claims it offers more efficient dissipation of cone energy and reduction of unwanted resonances as a consequence.

And at the bottom of the cabinet Fyne has employed some technology so singular its patent is pending.

Called ‘BassTrax Tractrix Diffuser System’ (and we can’t help thinking Fyne Audio got just a little carried away there - try saying it fast and see how far you get), it combines a fairly conventional downward-firing port above a carefully profiled, conical diffuser.

This is designed to convert the standard plain-wave port energy into a 360-degree wave front. So the port’s response is dispersed more evenly and the speaker itself should, in theory, be less picky about its position in your room.

All of this low-frequency regulation takes place behind some slatted vents, which also add a little visual pizzaz to the otherwise necessarily predictable aesthetic.

The F501s’ grilles are, like many a rival design, held in place by magnets beneath the wood veneer.

Unlike many rivals, though, Fyne has considered what happens to the grilles once you’ve whipped them off - the rear of the cabinet has magnets too (as well as chunky biwiring speaker cable terminals), so the grilles can be safely and conveniently stored.

Sound

After the usual leisurely running-in period, we get the F501s positioned just so in our listening room.

It’s safe to say the thoughtful Fyne approach makes the speakers pretty forgiving of room position - but we find the F501s to be happiest out in some free space, and toed in just a fraction towards our listening position. In this, they’re no different to the majority of loudspeakers we listen to.

At this sort of money loudspeakers need to be able to turn their hands to any type of music without alarms - but we have to start somewhere, so we give the F501s the chance to show off their chops with Diana Krall’s version of Almost Blue.

This is a high-gloss hi-fi recording, with painstakingly recorded piano and close-mic’d vocal supported by stand-up bass, brushed drum kit and economical guitar - and the F501s absolutely lap it up.

Initial impressions are of a broad, well defined sound stage, solid stereo focus and a lavish amount of detail. No nuance of Krall’s phrasing, no creak of double-bass fretboard, no lingering decay of a piano note is ignored.

But while they’re borderline-fanatical about laying out the last scrap of information, the F501s don’t sacrifice the coherence or unity of a performance in the process. Timing and integration are excellent, and the sympathetic responsiveness of the musicians is never understated or overlooked.

Upping the assertiveness quotient more than somewhat with a switch to Burn With Me by DJ Koze allows the F501s to show off their beautifully even, consistent tonality.

The speakers’ cleverly judged crossover points mean, from the bottom of the frequency range to the top, there’s no noticeable gear-change to the F501s’ delivery. This unified tonality, along with the sweet timing and transparency of their sound, makes the picture the Fyne Audios paint absolutely convincing.

Moving to the Deutsche Grammophon recording of Rhapsody in Blue by the Los Angeles Philharmonic under Leonard Bernstein not only allows the F501s to again demonstrate their fine grasp of timing (Bernstein takes the LAP through at an eccentric and awkward tempo, but the speakers have not a moment’s trouble tying it all together) but also their dynamic prowess.

Rhapsody in Blue is full of attention-seeking shifts from ruminative piano to full-orchestra outrage, and the F501s handle each with confidence. They snap into the leading edges of notes, alive with well-controlled drive and attack, and exit with similar alacrity. And they put significant distance between ‘very very quiet’ and ‘very loud indeed’.

No matter the sternness of the challenges we pose to these speakers, they prove unfazeable. Lotte Kestner’s Secret Longitude shows the F501s can deliver all the character and emotion of a vocal performance; The Grit in the Pearl by Clark demonstrates low-frequency punch, speed and body; The Byrds’ amble through You Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere reveals top-end crispness and substance.

We’ll concede the F501s’ treble response is absolutely as confident and assertive as it can be without becoming hard or tiring.

A degree of system-matching is always necessary, but in this instance it’s imperative - the Fyne Audios’ top end isn’t impossible to provoke. Equally, while the thrilling rapidity of their low-frequency response might (on first acquaintance) be confused with a lack of extension, leaner electronics are probably best avoided.

And while we’re laying out our few caveats, we don’t think the F501s are all that tolerant of background-music levels of volume. They remain cogent and listenable to low volumes, but their vibrancy and excitement properly comes to the fore once the volume control nudges above ‘polite’.

But they’re such an enthralling listen once the wick is properly lit, we doubt you’ll want to hear them at background levels anyway.

Verdict

It’s obviously a bold move to launch a loudspeaker into the sort of competition the F501s are going to face - but then it’s equal obvious Fyne Audio has no problem with acting boldly. The F501s are an extremely confident calling-card.

Fyne Audio have succeeded in updating the two-way, point-source model without diluting its original musical appeal.
Roy Gregory

Fyne Audio Loudspeakers: Something Old, Something New

 

 

The most interesting new brand at the recent Bristol Hi-Fi show in the UK was Fyne Audio. Whilst I’m sure the pun is intentional, the name also references Loch Fyne; this new loudspeaker line hails from Scotland, just like its spiritual forebear. Take a quick look at the Fyne Audio loudspeakers and you could mistake them for a new Tannoy range. Dig a little deeper and you quickly realize just why that is.

Like many of the other venerable names in the UK audio industry, Tannoy has passed into new ownership. In 2015, the mainly pro-orientated Music Group acquired the Danish TC Group of companies. TC Group specializes in studio, broadcast and installed products, but had also acquired Tannoy in 2002. The takeover was largely focused on the home-studio and pro brands, meaning that Tannoy and, in particular, the much-loved (in certain, mainly Far East markets) Prestige series, with their big, dual-concentric drivers housed in ultra-traditional cabinetry, faced an uncertain future. With production of the other domestic ranges already moved to China, the Scottish workforce was dwindling and the rumors were swirling, leaving most of the existing management and production staff with a stark choice between jumping or being pushed. The end result was a highly experienced management team and personnel with no company to run.

You can see where this is going. Much work, three product lines and one business plan later, the nascent Fyne Audio was able to attract significant external funding, and the company is up and running. As well as a fully ex-Tannoy masthead, the team includes members with experience at Mission and Wharfedale, and perhaps most notably, Dr Paul Mills, the man responsible for Tannoy product development for over 30-years. But don’t assume that Fyne Audio is simply manufacturing what amounts to rebadged Tannoy designs. Give a design team, tied to 30 years of product development, inherited culture and residual inventory, a blank sheet of paper and it’s like all of their birthdays arriving at once. No more using the existing parts (because there are so many in stock), no more sticking to given materials (because they’re synonymous with the brand), no more having to retain outmoded design features (because the customers still want them). This isn’t just an opportunity to revisit the design philosophy; it’s a chance to completely overhaul the thinking, materials, engineering and sourcing of every aspect of the product. These are point-source designs, conceived and manufactured in this century, rather than the last.

The Fyne loudspeakers might have familiar DNA, but they’re a whole new ballgame, both sonically and aesthetically. The company showed examples from three ranges: the relatively conventional F300 series, which pairs multi-fiber paper cones with a 25mm soft-dome tweeter; the F500 series, based around 6" or 8" two-way coincident drivers; and the F1-10 flagship model, with its distinctive, curved-wall cabinet and periscope-style mounting for its 10" point-source driver. Of these, it’s inevitably the models with those coincident drivers that are going to attract all of the attention. Dubbed Isoflare by the company, these drivers are all-new designs, specially built for Fyne Audio to exacting specifications. A titanium-diaphragm compression driver is housed in the throat of the multi-fiber paper bass/midrange cone, with proprietary profiles for both the horn and cone flare.

But that’s only the start of the story, with thoroughly modern thinking applied to everything from the cast baskets and fluted surrounds, to edge-wound voice coils and high-powered, vented motor configurations. Bass loading is reflex, but with a downward-firing port aimed at a flared 360-degree diffuser with a Tractrix profile. Placed at the bottom of the cabinet, this provides omnidirectional low-frequency output, but perhaps more importantly, the proximity to the floor maximizes bass weight and extension. Combine that with moderate sensitivities around the 90dB mark and gentle crossover slopes and you should get decent bandwidth and a driveable load.

The heart of the range is the F500 series, ranging from £599 to £1599 per pair in price. The F500 (above right) is a compact stand-mount based on the 6" Isoflare coincident driver mounted in a conventional rectangular MDF cabinet. The single driver, narrower than it is deep, and all-around venting for the bass make for an unusual and attractive speaker. The F501 adds a 6" bass unit with a laminated paper cone to create a 2.5-way floorstander, while the F502 (above left) makes the move up to 8" drivers. Above that, the F1-10 uses a single 10" driver in its differentially ported, compressed plywood enclosure.

One look at the picture should tell you that these are not your dad’s Tannoys. Thoroughly modern in both thinking and appearance, Fyne Audio’s products have stepped firmly away from the heritage branding of the long-established Tannoy Prestige models, products that worked hard to look older than they really were. In contrast, a speaker like the F502 wears its technological heart very much on its aesthetically up-to-the-minute sleeve. At the same time, it makes an acoustical-engineering argument for its point-source driver technology rather than a traditionalist one. Whether that engineering philosophy can trump heritage appeal remains to be seen -- and, internationally speaking, is probably market dependent -- but if the impressive initial results from the speakers played in Bristol are anything to go by, it sounds like Fyne Audio have succeeded in updating the two-way, point-source model without diluting its original musical appeal. The products seen at the show were final pre-production units, with initial production models expected within six to eight weeks, definitely making Fyne Audio one to watch.

The ability to present fine detail in a musically coherent yet uninhibited manner is the mark of a fine speaker at any price and the F301 has it in spades.

Verdict

10TOTAL SCORE
Fyne Audio F301 Review

The brand may be new, but this is an impressive design and an accomplished standmount starter

SOUND QUALITY
 
10
VALUE FOR MONEY
 
10
BUILD QUALITY
 
9
EASE OF DRIVE
 
10
PROS
  • Natural, fluent presentation; effortlessly musical

Basically old-guard Tannoy talent marching under its own flag, Fyne Audio has wasted no time pinning itself to the UK’s hi-fi map with two, well-stocked model lines and a roll-out schedule that would make even a well-oiled multinational sweat.

In terms of the group, this is the first of the slightly larger, pricier models promising sexier sonics – though as we’ve already discovered, the tiddlers are having none of that.

After the 100mm mid/bass driver of the AE and DALI’s 130mm unit, we’re up to 150mm with a multi-fibre paper cone and a phase plug at the centre, to smooth roll-off characteristics.

Look more closely and you’ll notice that the roll rubber surround is contoured and looks a little like the outer tread of a car tyre. Fyne Audio calls this variable geometry FyneFlute technology and the aim is to provide a non-homogeneous interface and thus a more effective barrier for the cone’s energy – leading to a cleaner sound. Meanwhile, the tweeter’s protective mesh cover incorporates a ‘phase loss compensator’ that delays output for a smoother and more extended frequency response.

Sound quality

The F301’s bigger box makes it sound a shade more relaxed than the DALI and quite similar in tonal balance to the AE100 – notably in its upper frequency smoothness – though right at the top end there’s a little more light and sparkle. Bass is firm and well judged, but no deeper than what’s come before from the smaller speakers, but the F301 is significantly more sensitive and could probably get away with a less grippy amp than the Hegel with its mighty damping factor.

This Fyne Audio’s musical chops, however, are beyond doubt. The instrumental strands running through Donald Fagen’s ode to Mona are many, delicate, complex and convoluted, but via the F301 everything is clear and in the right place at the right time. The speaker has a deft touch with Combat Continuum’s ludicrously vast soundscapes, too. And yet nothing is in the least diffuse. Performers, instruments and special effects can be located with pinpoint accuracy and tonally they ring just as true. The ability to present fine detail in a musically coherent yet uninhibited manner is the mark of a fine speaker at any price and the F301 has it in spades. Its portrayal of Krall’s grand piano is a singular joy, delivering the attack of hammer on string and a woody richness neither of the tiddlers can quite capture. Perhaps best of all, this speaker lets the music

A FYNE START

The name might be new, but the ex-Tannoy personnel behind Fyne Audio bring with them a combined 200 years’ of experience in the hi-fi industry. Safe to say, the old cliche ‘hits the ground running’ has seldom seemed more apt. It’s probably not stretching things too far to speculate that the two model ranges Fyne Audio has launched suggest the direction Tannoy might have taken had not almost the entire senior management, design, engineering, sourcing and sales team elected to leave and advance their ideas under a new flag. Let’s put it this way: Fyne Audio’s head of design and engineering, Dr Paul Mills, was responsible for the way the last 30-years’ worth of Tannoy loudspeakers turned out.

The rubber surround on the mid/bass driver gives a cleaner sound breathe and sound natural without hype or artifice and that contributes greatly to its listenability. It isn’t brightly lit, there’s no spray-on sheen or strategic emphasis. No manipulative euphony. It’s just the music, pure and simple

Verdict

10TOTAL SCORE
Fyne Audio F301 Review

The brand may be new, but this is an impressive design and an accomplished standmount starter

SOUND QUALITY
 
10
VALUE FOR MONEY
 
10
BUILD QUALITY
 
9
EASE OF DRIVE
 
10
PROS
  • Natural, fluent presentation; effortlessly musical
What Hi-Fi? Awards 2018 winner with 5 STARS - Fyne Audio has done a sterling job with these mouth-watering speakers.

OUR VERDICT

It’s two out of two so far for Fyne Audio, with the F302 never in any danger of falling short of five stars

FOR

  • Full-bodied, entertaining presentation
  • Fantastic timing and dynamic range
  • Plenty of low-end presence

Homonyms hold the key to around 90 per cent of Dad jokes, and for that we must be grateful to our language for their existence. But when it comes to Fyne Audio, the fledgling Scottish company’s rhyme-sake doesn’t describe its brilliance quite aptly enough.

Though in its infancy as a brand, Fyne’s seven-strong management team represents a kind of supergroup of industry minds. It has more than 200 years of experience - and delivers results that actually total the sum of its parts, if the first of its loudspeakers to arrive in our test rooms are anything to go by.

We’ve already praised the company’s superlative F501 speakers, so the time to welcome its entry-level floorstanders could hardly come soon enough.

And if that tantalisingly low NZ$995/pr price-tag doesn't already have you rushing to dig out your credit card, we won’t be surprised if you’re already entering your bank details by the end of this review.

Build

A two-way, rear-ported design, the F302s house a 25mm polyester dome tweeter and 15cm multi-fibre mid/bass driver in each of their relatively sturdy cabinets.

With the plinths adding a little more width to the overall footprint, it feels you’re getting a lot of speaker for the money - even though you won’t be greasing the sides to squeeze them in to your living room.

The F302s are available in walnut, black ash and light oak finishes – described by Fyne as ‘superior vinyl’. These are understated finishes, offset by a glossy black headband framing the tweeter. 

There is further detailing surrounding the bass/mid driver too, though more than mere aesthetic flourish, this tyre-like design aids solidity and makes it more difficult to distort, in a similar fashion to twisting or folding a sheet of paper.

Sound

Uncomplicated in design, their performance sets the F302s apart as immediate class-leaders.

We listen to every song from beginning to end - an acid test passed only by the most engaging products to cross our path, and there’s no greater praise we can offer Fyne Audio than that.

We play Bon Iver’s 22, a Million and from the outset we’re met with a confident, forward presentation - but one that has all the detail and refinement we might expect from the best standmounters at this price.

The texture in those opening vocal loops offers a sense of movement and anticipation over a flatlining drone, and quite luscious warmth to Justin Vernon’s trademark choral harmonies. The presentation also feels spacious, with plenty of dimensionality both in terms of width and depth. 

The size of the cabinet suggests a wealth of low-end, but bass is taut and doesn’t obstruct the F302s’ keen rhythmic sense.

Advertisement

Timing and dynamic range are often neglected characteristics in floorstanders at this price – they often favour power, bass and a grander soundstage instead – so it’s worth highlighting just how adept the Fynes are at capturing both.

That means harnessing the grimy percussive loops of tracks such as 10 d E A T h b R E a s T, while allowing 29 #Strafford APTS to trickle downstream without fear of becoming stagnant. It builds the intensity of 8 (circle) nicely as it reaches its anthemic conclusion.

These tracks also highlight how adept the F302s are at capturing the production as well as the character of the music.

With synthesizer and vocal alike sodden in almost 80s levels of reverb, the tone changes entirely with the following number ­___45___, a dry presentation of breathy saxophone harmonies that the F302s are self-assured enough to throw front and centre.

The contrast would not perhaps need to be this stark for us to recognise it, nor for us to enjoy our time spent with these speakers - but it is indicative of the kind of insight and analysis that's quite rare in this price bracket.

It’s a more mature performance than we were expecting, even having heard what Fyne is capable of further up the food chain.

If there is one caveat, it is that some care needs to be taken with system matching. While the balance is far from skewed, there is a little brightness in the treble that should be tempered by pairing with a suitable amplifier and music source.

At this price we’d recommend something such as Hegel H90 / H190 amp, which will complement the F302s’ innate strengths while rounding off some of that top end. 

That said, even testing with our Cyrus CD / Rega Elex-R combo, each of which can highlight any treble coarseness, was a delight. So it’s more a case that you’ll get the best from these speakers with some careful matching, rather than being forced to avoid them without.

Verdict

It’s rare to find floorstanding all-rounders at less than NZ $995/pr able to compete in every respect with the wealth of quality standmount speakers available at the same price.

Which only serves to demonstrate just what a sterling job Fyne has done with the F302s.

If our F501 review had your mouth watering, but put your bank account in peril, Fyne has provided with another class-leader. One that belies its extremely reasonable price tag at every turn.

...balance – sound wise which is better than the XT8F’s and the overall build quality of the Fyne Audio F Series is 100% superior than that of the Revolution XT Series.

I have been wanting to listen to the Fyne Audio F502 floor standing speakers for a while now as I have always liked the Tannoy Revolution XT8F speakers and hence was keen to hear how much the boffins at Fyne Audio (ex Tannoy), with a collective experience of over 100 years, have managed to showcase their skills with the F502’s

After an excruciating wait, thanks to strong demand for the F502’s worldwide, KEI, the distributors for Fyne Audio in India, finally managed to get a few pairs for our market and duly opened a pair for evaluation as well as for the listening pleasure of the av media as well as the audio enthusiasts. It so happened that I had the good fortune of visiting on the day the F502’s landed at KEI’s HQ and were just plugged in for their evaluation, so technically they were fresh out of their boxes and ready to go. Go they went as right from the first track played, the F502’s showed no signs of edginess or any of the usual maladies associated with new speakers. What struck me the most was that the sound was so open, enveloping and balanced inspite of having no break in and also the fact that the speakers were not in an ideal environment. Given the constraints, KEI’s technical head was at hand and had no doubt managed to set them up well so kudos to the gent.

Partnering the F502’s were the following:
Analogue Source: Thorens TD240MKII with TAS267 MM Cartridge
Phone Pre Amp: MM Phono Input of NADM32
Digital Source: DAC inside NAD M32, paired with Bluesound Node 2i as the streamer.
Amplifier: NAD M32 Direct Digital
Cables: Inakustik

We played a variety of music genre’s, analogue & digital, some being very familiar, some not and the F502’s never sounded harsh, tinny or having bloated bass. The usual suspects (audiophile tracks) sounded wonderful and without any overemphasis of any specific frequencies. I also played some tracks from itunes and the tracks that did not have a good recording did sound flat and unappealing so yes the F502’s do not gloss over any glitches, which is also good.

Initial Thoughts:
What was supposed to be a quick listening session turned out to last for over two hours which indicates that the F502’s have the knack of reeling one in hook line & sinker with their abilities.

I Would not like to straight away compare the F502’s with the Revolution XT8F’s, but what immediately comes to the fore is a balance – sound wise which is better than the XT8F’s and the overall build quality of the Fyne Audio F Series is 100% superior than that of the Revolution XT Series. I will cover those aspects in detail when I have a pair of the F series for a detailed review, in future.

Do I like the F502’s, hell yes and am very keen to listen to them again, once they have had a decent amount of hours of break in, post which would be better positioned to arrive at a comprehensive conclusion BUT based on what I heard, I believe that the F502’s have that magic to ensure that they will be popular with the music enthusiasts & also the movie enthusiasts who love to listen to music in their home theatre environment as well.

I find myself really warming to its presentation over time; the F702 has a knack of getting the basics very right indeed, and the result is always a most enjoyable listen.
David Price

SUMMARY: There’s plenty to like about this lofty but elegant floorstander in Fyne Audio’s Premium range, as David Price discovers, It handles recordings with an innate sense of balance with no artificial plateaus. Most striking to my eye is the quality of finish; the smoothness of the piano black gloss cabinet lacquer on the supplied review sample is quite simply staggering. lass-clear, it is better than any finish I’ve ever seen on a car; as such, it’s surely a declaration of intent to any doubters or naysayers. All the strands of the mix such as guitars, bass and drums are very accurately located, but most impressive is the rendering of Drake’s vocals, which hover ethereally between the speakers and hang back a little, too. The effect is quite mesmeric, and for me the magic of a well-done point-source design.

REVIEW: It’s hard to talk about Fyne Audio without mentioning Tannoy, simply because like Cyrus Audio and Mission – the former could not have existed without the latter. In 2017, Tannoy operations director Gabriel O’Donohue, product development director Stuart Wilkinson and design and engineering director Dr. Paul Mills all left to form Fyne Audio, along with various others. Although not every hi-fi enthusiast pays close attention to corporate rearrangements, it’s important to know this because the F702 shares some design DNA with earlier Tannoy designs – so fans of the brand sound should automatically sit up and pay attention. Indeed, the company’s management team boasts collective audio industry experience of over 200 years – something that money can’t buy, and practically every other hi-fi ‘start up’ cannot muster.

The new F702 is the middle model in Fyne Audio’s premium range, neatly sandwiched above the F700 compact standmount and below the huge F703 floorstander. It’s still pretty big by British standards, and most people’s listening rooms will look a lot smaller with a pair in place. Its profile reminds me of – yes, you’ve guessed it – a big Tannoy loudspeaker, but there are plenty of detail points that differ. Most striking to my eye is the quality of finish; the smoothness of the piano black gloss cabinet lacquer on the supplied review sample is quite simply staggering. lass-clear, it is better than any finish I’ve ever seen on a car; as such, it’s surely a declaration of intent to any doubters or naysayers.

There’s plenty to like about this lofty but elegant floorstander in Fyne Audio’s Premium range, as David Price discovers There’s a lot more to the F702 than just a fancy finish, though. The three drive units are key to its sound, not just in what they are but how they are arranged. The lion’s share of the work is done by the 200mm IsoFlare point-source driver; this is a coaxial treble and mid/bass unit, and works with a 200mm multi-fibre bass driver. The 2.5-way system crosses over at 1.7kHz and 250Hz respectively, using a passive low loss crossover with second order low pass and first order high pass filtering; all components are cryogenically treated.

The closer you look at the drivers, the more interesting things get. The upper IsoFlare has at its heart a 25mm magnesium dome compression tweeter with neodymium magnet system and a multi-fibre mid/bass cone with a special FyneFlute surround. This is a specially designed roll surround, oriented to stop energy being reflected back down the cone and thus distorting the sound.

The ‘non-homogenous’, variable geometry cone interface is said to reduce coloration. Design supremo Dr. Paul Mills won’t tell me what fibres are used in the cone, saying only that:“It’s a Fynely guarded secret!” What he can disclose, however, is that the F702’s large cabinet has two cavities inside to separate the main drive units; the bass unit uses the company’s own BassTrax Tractrix diffuser with a downward-firing port.

The result is a large and heavy loudspeaker, albeit one that’s exceptionally well built – even at its lofty price. Weighing 30.5kg, it isn’t something you can whisk out of its packing box at will; you’ll need to be careful and methodical about unpacking it. Then it’s a case of getting the positioning just right; I find that it works surprisingly well when placed close to my boundary wall, but for best results it needs at least half a metre of breathing space. The speaker’s metal plinth includes very high-quality spikes; cups are also included for those who don’t want to kill their carpets or polished wooden floors. The supplied grilles fit easily via magnetic mounting, but all listening is completed with them removed. The F702 sounds best in my room with a slight toe-in, but needs some run-in time. At first, it sounds quite shut in, but after an hour’s listening things snap into focus to create an expansive image that’s way outside of the cabinets.

Sound quality

The company quotes a power handling of 30 to 200W, and the speaker can stand 100W RMS of power continuously. Sensitivity is put at 92dB per watt, which is very good by class standards and means that many valve amplifier users will naturally be drawn to the F702. Nominal impedance is 8ohm, and Fyne Audio says that in a typical room, the frequency response is 30Hz to 34kHz (at -6dB). Being a human being, my ears prevent me from verifying the higher frequency claim, but the back of my chest confirms that the F702 goes down extremely low in my listening room, at least. 

One of the joys of loudspeaker reviewing is the sheer diversity of sound you get to hear. Experience soon teaches you to expect a certain style of presentation from a particular type of speaker; for example, Quad electrostatics are way different to horn-loaded Klipschs. So with a large floorstander with a point-source treble / midrange driver and an equally sizeable bass unit, odds are that it’s going to be expansive, widescreen fun – and so it proves.

Out of the box
Fyne Audio’s distinctive IsoFlare coaxial driver isn’t the only thing that makes it sound as it does, yet it certainly plays a big part. The most obvious and arguably impressive aspect of its sound is its excellent soundstaging, which takes the music right out of the box. Nick Drake’s Hazey Jane II highlights this all too clearly; the album from which it is taken – Bryter Later – isn’t the world’s most audiophile recording and can be a little underwhelming due to its tonal dryness and opaque early seventies analogue recording quality. Yet as this speaker gets into its stride, you can hear it dissolve out of the cabinets like a fizzing Alka-Seltzer disappearing into its glass of water. The stereo soundstage grows in size, opening up to reveal what’s actually quite a decent recording with plenty of things going on. All the strands of the mix such as guitars, bass and drums are very accurately located, but most impressive is the rendering of Drake’s vocals, which hover ethereally between the speakers and hang back a little, too. The effect is quite mesmeric, and for me the magic of a well-done point-source design.

The second most obvious facet of this big speaker is its tonal balance. This turns out to be very even and extended, with no obvious shouty bits that alter the sound of the source material. Take Duran Duran’s Lonely In Your Nightmare for example; a heavily compressed early eighties pop record it’s strong on the EQ. It can sound a little thin and tinselly on lesser loudspeakers but the F702 gives a resolutely even and balanced rendition, making it very clear that it’s a wideband design. No excuses are needed for its deep, extended bass response; it goes down very low and yet isn’t in the least bit lumpy. Instead it handles all recordings with an innate sense of balance, with no artificial plateaus here or there to give things an extra fillip. This is a sign of a seriously designed big floorstander for me; all that extra cabinet volume should be there to make the bass deeper, not louder.

At the other end of the frequency range, the tweeter does a good – if not quite stellar – job. To my ears it isn’t quite as delicate or insightful as some designs I have heard with ribbon treble units, but this type of drive unit brings its own problems – one of which can be dispersion issues, so it’s swings and roundabouts. The fast hit ride cymbals on the Duran Duran track are great to hear; arriving right on time and sounding smoother and silkier than many metal dome tweeters I have heard. Some might actually want just a little more bite; for example, put on the nineties pop of Saint Etienne’s He’s On The Phone and it almost sounds too refined and balanced to indelibly stamp the music on you. This is very much a judgement call by Fyne Audio

I suspect; those with the means and space to afford such a speaker probably won’t be listening to retro electro dance every waking hour and instead might seek program material that is more subtle, insightful and even handed to play.

Sunset by Frederick Delius with Julian Lloyd Webber and Jiaxin Cheng on cello might be more representative of what many of this loudspeaker’s natural customers use it for and here the F702 positively blossoms. Alongside the aforementioned vast soundstaging and imaging precision, it is very gratifying to hear so much detail from the recording. This isn’t an ultra-forensic speaker – some others dig deeper – but it’s still highly informative about, for example, the textural quality of the cellos. Here one can get a good sense of them being real acoustic instruments, rather than digital facsimiles, and enjoy their natural timbre and resonance. The drive units are obviously of very high quality and mate up well to one another; at the same time, there’s very little to be heard from the cabinet either.

There’s no doubting the many qualities of this big loudspeaker; it is stellar in some respects and in others nothing less than excellent. Its handling of rhythms and dynamics is highly accomplished, albeit not quite up there with its imaging. The way the progressive rock of Steve Hackett’s Star Of Sirius rolls along and how it tracks the subtle dynamic accenting of this great guitarist’s playing, is very enjoyable. Yet this is not a loudspeaker that tries too hard to deliver sonic fireworks; it’s less showy and more subtle than that. People wanting a ‘character speaker’ that wows the listener within seconds of setting ears on it may find it a little too cultured. Personally, I find myself really warming to its presentation over time; the F702 has a knack of getting the basics very right indeed, and the result is always a most enjoyable listen.

Conclusion

With true high-end performance, especially in its imaging and soundstaging, the Fyne Audio F702 is an excellent large loudspeaker in its own right. It ticks a good deal of important boxes while having very few flaws and when you consider that in the great pantheon of high-end floorstanders it isn’t actually particularly expensive at all, it begins to look an even more impressive proposition 

How It Compares:

One of the closest rivals is the new Spendor D9. A three-way, four-driver floorstander, this speaker sports a conventional box rather than a curved cabinet. In one way it has a similar smooth and civilised tonal balance, yet the Spendor can’t match the Fyne Audio’s superlative soundstaging and imaging. Both are great speakers.

Q&A
DP: How would you describe your acoustic design philosophy?

PM: Simply, it’s about purity of design to deliver a truly engaging musical presentation. The IsoFlare driver is key to what we do, but the attention to detail crosses all aspects of the loudspeaker design process from the initial R&D to the final cosmetic finish. As a new company with decades of loudspeaker experience across the management team, we have had the luxury of developing everything from scratch and the expertise to really push the boundaries of acoustic design and engineering. It boils down to our combined passion for music and delivering the best possible sound in the home. Nothing in the Fyne Audio range gets signed off until the entire team agree that we have created a product that delivers class-leading musical performance at its price.

DP: Why did you opt to use a magnesium tweeter dome?

PM: It is lighter than more commonly used materials such as titanium and aluminium, and has a higher speed of sound propagation. It is also inherently well damped and has a better controlled resonance at break-up frequency. On the downside, it’s a difficult material to work with and form, and considerably more expensive than the common options.

DP: As such, magnesium diaphragm HF units are the preserve of Fyne Audio’s premium ranges. Why use a ‘multi-fibre’ cone?

PM: Controlling the rigidity and damping of a large surface area bass driver while keeping the mass as low as possible to improve the transient response is a balancing act. Materials like polypropylene are well damped and relatively low cost, but lack rigidity compared with a well designed fibrous pulp mix, so can sound a bit dead in the midrange. So on premium products like the F700 series, we have developed bespoke fibre mixes to create optimum cone mechanical performance for our IsoFlare drivers.

 

FLARE FOR DESIGN

Designed and developed in-house at the company’s Glasgow R&D facility, the IsoFlare driver is Fyne Audio’s ideal type of coaxial drive unit. Designer Dr. Paul Mills

explains that it is a true point-source where the mid/bass driver shares a common centre with the high-frequency unit, noting: “The complete audio spectrum radiates

isotropically from the driver, giving a spherical wavefront, and the phase response is more linear (constant group delay) than a discrete driver configuration. Also, it better

preserves the harmonic structure of complex sounds.” Having previously worked with countless drive units at Tannoy, he is highly experienced in optimising it. Fyne Audio’s IsoFlare uses a rigid cast aluminium chassis that’s light so doesn’t store energy. This marries to a bespoke multi-fibre cone with a FyneFlute surround, and the light and stiff magnesium dome. There’s a vented rear chamber in the neodymium tweeter magnet, which is designed to place low-frequency resonance well below the crossover region. The unique geometry of the tweeter’s waveguide is said to provide a flat frequency response while avoiding internal reflections. The end result is a drive unit that generates exceptional stereo imaging, with less dependency on room placement in order to give of its very best

the Fyne Audio F301s are a real bargain in budget audio. Well built, nicely finished and with excellent sonics, they’d still be a contender at twice the price
Ashley

I’ve been hoping to review Fyne Audio’s products for some time, though rarely does a new brand see such demand for its products that samples are like gold dust. But when old Tannoy talent regroup and launch a new name and fresh ranges designed from the ground up, there is certainly reason to get excited.

F301 Blk Frt

The F301 is the largest standmount in the companies 300 series, situated at the budget end of the company’s product range between the smaller F300 and floorstanding F302. The range also includes the larger F303 floorstander and both centre (F300C) and discrete ‘on-wall’ (F300LCR) models for home theatre installations.

All mid/bass drivers make use of Fyne’s multifibre paper cones, with a central phase plug providing smooth midrange roll-off characteristics. The roll rubber surrounds are formed with equally spaced grooves rather than a uniform surface. Known as FyneFlute technology, this effectively terminates cone energy, resulting in better control particularly at the leading edges of notes.

F300 Driver Detail2

The 25 mm Polyester Dome tweeter is fitted with a powerful neodymium magnet, and a phase loss compensator integrated within the protective mesh grill which delays the output from specific areas of the dome to give a smooth and extended response.

F300 Series Tweeter Detail

The cabinets are veneered MDF and are internally braced. Though rear ported, the velocities seem such that the F301 can work well close to a wall with minimal ill effect on performance even when playing loud. They’re also unfussy about room placement, though they’ll benefit from a decent pair of stands and being at least 40 cm from room boundaries to perform at their best.

Few companies can produce a product of this quality on the first go, testament to the engineering know-how of those in the Fyne team. Lifted from the packaging the F301s aren’t especially heavy, but are every bit as well made as befits a speaker of several times their modest price. The finish is expertly executed and there are no duff edges.

F301 Oak 3q Goff

The driver surrounds are neatly trimmed with a fixed grill over the tweeter, set into a curved gloss fascia and sitting slightly proud of the cabinet. Unusually in a budget speaker, the cloth-covered woofer grill is held by 4 magnets, hiding unsightly fixings and making popping the grill off to optimise sonics a snap. Branding is well placed, with Fyne’s logo on the grill and their name badge on the baffle beneath.

The cabinets feel solid and sturdy with a deadened ‘thunk’ when tapped. The sides, front baffle and rear appear especially well damped. I picked up a slight resonance (approximately 440Hz) tapping the top panel but certainly nothing of concern. The F301s are rear ported with a block of chunky single-wire terminals beneath. The terminals will accept bare wire, banana plugs or appropriate spades. Polarity is marked with raised symbols; a minor point, though one which, being unable to see the colours, I appreciated nonetheless.

F301 Blk Rear

The F301s were connected to my Marantz PM-11S3 amplifier with a pair of Rega Duet cables. Digital and DAC duties were handled by my Cambridge Audio 851N, and vinyl playback came via a Technics SL-1210 MK II with an Audio-Technica AT-VM95SH, and latterly both a Technics SL-1200G and our recent Thorens TD-150 MK2 builds. I even added a cassette or two into the mix via a Pioneer CT-S830S. Sturdy wooden stands brought the tweeters to roughly ear height when seated on a sofa approximately 2 metres away, with the speakers roughly the same distance apart. My review samples arrived well run in so I began listening almost immediately, though did allow time to become accustomed to their sound before noting my impressions.

That’s my excuse anyway. Truth is the F301s really are a musical speaker above all else. Whether streaming digitally or spinning records, tunes flow from them with an easy, laid back air. With an effortless presentation, they show surprising bass extension; deep an authoritative yet refined and well controlled. Detail levels are high especially through the mids and into the top end. Vocals are full-bodied and expressive. There’s a healthy dose of mid-range three-dimensionality too and an immersive stereo image, the realism of which is quite remarkable for a speaker of this size and price.

There’s something about the F301s presentation that just sounds ‘right’. They’re forgiving of poor recordings too and are very easy to drive. Paired with an amp of even moderate power they will go very loud indeed and yet none of that effortlessness or outstanding imaging is lost.

F301 Wal Frt

At NZ$595 incl tax the Fyne Audio F301s are a real bargain in budget audio. Well built, nicely finished and with excellent sonics, they’d still be a contender at twice the price. If this is what the company can produce on a budget, I look forward to auditioning their more upmarket models. Highly recommended.

they're a worthy addition to the entry-level 'must listen' list, and certainly bode well for what else this new company has to offer.

Hi-Fi News Verdict: They may show the limitations of absolute low-frequency weight inherent in all loudspeakers of this size, but the little F301s do a good job of conveying a well-integrated sound, and are as enjoyable as they are mature-sounding. In a market that's not exactly short of choice, they're a worthy addition to the entry-level 'must listen' list, and certainly bode well for what else this new company has to offer.

REVIEW: A group of ex-Tannoy engineers bring their experience to bear on a new speaker brand. As past reviews have noted, the market's not exactly short of budget speaker offerings. Though prices down at the entry-level have shown an upward trend – after all, the £100-a-pair 'superboxes' of a decade or two back really wouldn't be sustainable these days – there's also an argument for saying there's not exactly a crying demand for new speaker brands.

All of that seems to have bypassed the team behind Fyne Audio, for the new Scottish-based brand has come to market with an unusually comprehensive offering. This peaks with the £26k F1-12, the very latest of a complete high-end F1 series, right down to the £250 F301 standmount speakers we have here, one step up from the even smaller F300 model and available in a choice of high-quality black ash, light oak or walnut finishes.

Going Public 

Two other ranges fill the gap between top and bottom. There's an F500 lineup, running from the compact F500 itself, a single-driver design with an unusual BassTrax loading system, of which more in a moment, this design being echoed in the larger F501 and F502 floorstanders. Above that sits the single-model F700 series, the F702 basically having the same driver configuration as the F502 but in a classier cabinet. Backup is provided by the three-strong range of active F3 subwoofers, their model designations provided by the size of the driver used, from 8in/20cm upwards. The top-end F3-12 model sees a 30cm woofer driven by 520W of 'DDX Direct Digital' amplification that comes with on-board DSP control.

The F1-10 differs from the rest of the range in its design, an immaculate walnut-veneered cylinder, just under 120cm tall, with burr walnut detailing, on the front of which is mounted, Cyclops-like, a single driver. Each speaker weighs in at a substantial 57.7kg, with Fyne Audio adding, amusingly, 'including spikes'.

The extent of the initial offering can seem baffling, but one must assume that the Fyne fellows know what they're doing. After all, as our boxout explains, they have over 200 years of cumulative speaker-building experience with that well-known loudspeaker brand you'll find in the dictionary as a (well-defended) term for public address systems. They gained major fame on railway platforms and in defence applications during the Second World War, and in holiday camps thereafter. When Spitfire and Hurricane pilots scrambled, they did so at the behest of orders issued over Tannoy speakers, and if anyone did ever cheerily announce 'Hi-de-hi, campers!' – well, you get the idea.

What is immediately apparent when one looks further up the new range, including the F1-10 flagship, is that some of the celebrated technology of the old company has been reinvented for the start-up's products. Most obvious is the heritage of the point source – don't mention the words 'dual' or 'concentric'! – Fyne Audio IsoFlare driver. But there's also innovation here, such as in the 'BassTrax' Tractrix loading found in some of the larger Fyne Audio models. This may draw on some Voigt designs of almost a century back, but the company claims its application is novel.

Magic Flute 

However, the F301 seems shorn of such innovation – after all, how much can one do with a budget-limited compact two-way reflex-ported speaker, designed for use on stands or shelves? The tweeter sits above the woofer, and the 30cm-tall enclosure – though solidly built and nicely finished in a decent vinyl wrap plus gloss surrounding the high-frequency driver – gives no hint of anything unusual going on.

Yet this is part of a new, cost-effective range, extending from the tiny F300s up through two floorstanding models to the F303, using two mid/bass drivers in a D'Appolito configuration in a 96cm-tall tower. So there must be something to set it apart – a spot of Fynesse, perhaps?

Well yes, there is, for below the 25mm polyester dome tweeter sits the 15cm multi-fibre mid/bass driver, the crossover point being 3.2kHz. And it's this larger driver that shows the most obvious signs of that experienced engineering team's input, in the form of its 'FyneFlute' surround. This uses variable-geometry fluting moulded into the surround to break up its profile, thus avoiding what the company describes as 'mis-termination' – in other words reflections back into the cone from the roll rather than absorption of the cone energy – and reducing coloration.

That aside, this speaker looks fairly conventional, having a magnetically-attached grille covering the mid/bass unit if required, and a fixed mesh over the tweeter in that upper gloss panel. Single-wire terminals are fitted below that rear port, and the speaker is happy on stands of around 60cm or so. I used a pair of hefty mass-loaded Atacama SE24s.

As already mentioned, there are some speakers down at this end of the market offering remarkable value for money, including the likes of the Wharfedale Diamond and D300 series models [HFN Jan '19], the smaller Q Acoustics offerings and – albeit at a higher price – the Bowers & Wilkins 607s. But the Fyne Audio F301 is a design well worthy of its place on the must-listen list of those building a highly cost-effective system, or indeed anyone putting together a 'second room' set-up.

Winning Mix 

Supported on my Atacama stands, slightly toed-in and with a spot of boundary reinforcement, Fyne's F301 delighted with its winning mix of smoothness and impact, making them sound anything but small, cheap speakers. What lack of ultimate extension they showed was well covered by the smartness with which the bass moved, and the way it integrated seamlessly up into the midrange. Meanwhile, the treble managed to seem open and airy without demonstrating any roughness or excessive brightness.

What's more, despite the lab testing revealing they're not quite the easygoing amplifier load their manufacturer may suggest, the F301s proved easy to drive. I used them with the relatively inexpensive Audiolab 6000A amplifier [HFN Mar '19] and a Naim Uniti Nova all-in-one streamer [HFN Nov '17] as well as my reference set-up of Naim NAC 52/52PS/NAP250. I found them both amenable to modest amp power while revealing of the benefits of upping the quality of the electronics used.

One of the more remarkable experiences was listening to the Buddy Holly Down The Line – Rarities set [Decca B0011675-02], where the little speakers did an admirable job of conveying the intimacy of these simple recordings. If the measure of a good system is how well it communicates a performance, then the F301s do just fine in bringing out the characteristics of Holly's voice, stripped of overdubs and often with nothing more than guitar accompaniment. Rather as the celebrated From The Original Master Tapes set [MCA MCAD-5540] does for the sound of Holly and his band, so this set gives further insights into the compositions and performances, and the immediacy here serves the recordings exceptionally well.

Motoring On 
This combination of openness and sweet treble, allied to good low-down weight – for loudspeakers of this size – also preserved the dynamics of Cara Dillon's Live At The Grand Opera House [Bowers & Wilkins Society Of Sound 30; 96kHz/24-bit]. The speakers also delivered small ensemble jazz such as Lars Danielsson's 2014 Liberetto II [ACT 9571-2; 96kHz/24-bit] in highly convincing fashion, from Danielsson's bass to Mathias Eicke's restrained trumpet and Magnus Östrom's precise drumming. With a bit of back wall to aid the low-end, the bass never lacks conviction, but is neatly controlled, while that spot of toe-in helps 'fix' the sonic image.

These aren't the speakers you'd choose if you had a huge room to fill with rock music at live gig levels, but in typical domestic spaces they're more than willing to give it a go, and motored through the easy groove of Van The Man's latest album – where does he get the energy? – The Prophet Speaks [Exile/Caroline International 7707186; 96kHz/24-bit]. Instruments were appropriately close-focused and given space to breath, while Morrison's voice was delivered with no shortage of character.

Up the scale to a big bruiser like Fleetwood Mac's Tango In The Night and the low-end limitations of the F301s are a little more apparent, but still the speakers crunch out the big slams of the title track. And this holds true whether in its original version or the rather more stately demo iteration on the 2017 30th anniversary deluxe set [Warner Bros 018227946388; 96kHz/24-bit].

The speakers also have sufficient crispness and control to give good insight into Anna Netrebko's 2013 Verdi album [DG 479 1052]. Sounding neither brittle nor strident, instead they give a fine – or is that Fyne? – view of the warmth of the soprano's voice, balanced well with the orchestral accompaniment.

Hi-Fi News Verdict 

They may show the limitations of absolute low-frequency weight inherent in all loudspeakers of this size, but the little F301s do a good job of conveying a well-integrated sound, and are as enjoyable as they are mature-sounding. In a market that's not exactly short of choice, they're a worthy addition to the entry-level 'must listen' list, and certainly bode well for what else this new company has to offer.

Scotland's Fynest

Not many start-up hi-fi companies begin business with two centuries of experience behind them, but that's what Fyne Audio can claim for its seven-strong core team. After a couple of takeovers of Tannoy – being first swallowed up by Danish speaker company TC, itself later acquired by Uli Behringer's Music Group – that team, formerly running the famous Coatbridge factory, found itself with not much to manage. So, moving on, it founded Fyne Audio with investment from overseas, as well as significant funding from Scottish Enterprise. It designs and engineers its products at its HQ in Lanarkshire, with a technical team led by Dr Paul Mills, a Tannoy veteran of almost 27 years, and formerly that company's Director of Research and Engineering for domestic products. Incidentally, the Tannoy name lives on as part of Music Group, alongside brands such as Midas, Lake and Turbosound, but its main focus these days is on the pro audio sector.

All in all we cannot recommend the F302 highly enough.

OUR VERDICT - British Audio is famous all over the world and Fyne Audio are set to be one of the big brands that audiophiles from all parts of the planet crave for. As you know, we test and assess all products before we agree to offer them to you and these Fyne Audio F 302 passed with flying colours. As Fyne Audio are a relatively new brand ( With 200 years experience ! ) we didn't know which partnering kit would work best so we dived straight in with the Denon PMA 800 NE, the results are.....impeccable.

FULL REVIEW: The F302 maged to immerse you in the music with a beautifully wide and deep soundstage meaning that if you were to close your eyes you could pinpoint where the instrumentalists are sat on stage when listening to an orchestral piece. Their ability to render even poor quality recordings into an enjoyable experience is simply sublime. Normally a budget floorstander can sound brittle but there is no evidence of that with the F302 as they never sound too bright. The integration between the bass and treble drivers is seamless lending vocals a beautiful fluidity without making them too prominent. And then there's the bass, and a talented dose it is.

When we unboxed the F302 I must admit that we didn't expect much in the form of low end presence due to the relatively small cabinet, I can assure you now, I was wrong. Play something with a deep low end such as Marian Hill - Down, and you are treated to a tight, punchy and deep bass with lots of texture. Even when driven hard by the Denon integrated the Fyne Audio F302 simply keep giving, to the point that the floor starts to vibrate. ​​​​​

​​All in all we cannot recommend the F302 highly enough. If you are building a budget system or upgrading your old kit these speakers will deliver an experience that will entertain everyone by simply allowing you to enjoy the music. These traits mean that the F302 will be a fine asset to any Hi-Fi or Home Cinema system - Thoroughly Recommended.

Power, Precision & Detail

Taking the performance characteristic of its sibling F301 bookshelf design, the floorstanding F302, with its increased cabinet volume, takes the music listening experience to an altogether more dynamic level. The enhanced depth of bass will be appreciated even if listening to the speaker at relatively low volume levels. And the increased power handling capacity ensures that the What HiFi 5 Star F302 won’t suffer from musical compression or distortion for those times when you just have to turn up the volume.

Premium Performance, Modest Price

The price may be entry level but the F300 range benefits from the very best technical and acoustic expertise in the loudspeaker industry. Offering a scale of specification and audiophile performance unrivalled at its price, the line-up provides versatility for music lovers or movie enthusiasts. With a choice of two bookshelf or stand-mount models, two floorstanders, a centre channel and dipole speaker, there are plenty of options to suit a wide variety of listening environments.

Sound Construction

A well-constructed cabinet is the starting point for any high-performance loudspeaker. Exceptional rigidity is provided on all F300 models through a combination of MDF panels which are cross-braced internally. Additional stiffness is achieved by coupling the low frequency driver’s magnet to the cabinet bracing using a resonant-absorbing mastic. Widening the footprint on the floor standing models, using a plinth with floor coupling spikes, provides stability for tight bass and accurate stereo imaging

Driven Performance

Fyne Audio aims to provide best in class performance at all price levels and the careful component selection for the F300 drivers helps to meet this goal. Utilising a multifibre paper cone on the bass / midrange drivers delivers a natural sounding midrange and clean transient behaviour. Fitted to the centre of the driver is a phase plug which provides smooth midrange roll-off characteristics. FyneFluteTM technology, used on the driver’s roll rubber surround, provides a non-homogeneous interface which very effectively terminates cone energy.

Smooth Detail

The tweeter combines a powerful Neodymium magnet system with a 25mm Polyester dome producing crisp and controlled high frequency detail. Integrated within the protective mesh cover is a phase loss compensator which delays the output from specific areas of the dome to give a smooth and extended response.

If you have room for a big pair of speakers, and you like an upbeat, fun sound, the Fyne Audio 303 speakers could be the ones for you. For weight and scale and outright excitement, these Fynes really are masters of their trade.
  • OUR VERDICT

  • The Fyne Audio F303 speakers are another pair of five-star floorstanders that deliver fun, fun and more fun

  • FOR

  • Big, room-filling sound

  • Plenty of bass

  • Smart appearance

There’s something hypnotic about watching a master of their trade at work. Whether it’s a racing driver perfecting every corner at high speed, an engraver precisely appending a fresh name to a trophy in seconds, or even a particularly efficient grocery-bagger in the local supermarket; seemingly effortless complete control is always impressive.

That’s a little how we feel listening to the Fyne Audio F303 speakers: they’re masters at work, and they make it sound easy. The F303s are the third pair of Fyne Audio floorstanders we’ve had in for review – and they’re the third to receive a five-star rating. So this relatively new company, with its core of ex-Tannoy staff, is clearly mastering its trade.

Build and compatibility

The Fyne Audio F303 speakers are a fairly substantial pair of tower speakers. At almost a metre tall, they cut an imposing, upmarket figure, especially in the walnut finish of our review sample, with black ash and light oak also available.

There’s a twin pair of speaker terminals around the back, giving you the option to bi-wire. Whichever colour you choose, you’ll have to fit the plastic feet-cum-stands and spikes. The slightly flimsy plastic here takes some sheen off what is otherwise a smart design.

The F303s feature two 15cm mid/bass drivers either side of a 25mm polyester dome tweeter. Known as the D’Appolito driver configuration, Fyne claims this helps deliver a smooth dispersion and a wide sweet spot, but as with any speaker design, the quality of the components and overall speaker build is ultimately of greater consequence.

The F303s sit above the Award-winning F302s in the Fyne range and that extra mid/bass driver and a larger cabinet are the differences between this model and their five-star smaller sibling’s standard two-way design. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the difference in sound is just as you might imagine from looking at the speakers side-by-side.

Sound

We’re happy to report that the sonic characteristics we’ve loved so much in previous Fyne speakers are present. Ultimately, this means the F303 speakers are exciting, upbeat and just fun, which unsurprisingly makes them hard not to love.

Listening to Hans Zimmer’s Time, we’re eager to hear how well these big cabinets can fill our room. And we’re not disappointed. As the track adds layer upon layer of stirring strings and brass to reach its epic denouement, the F303s effortlessly rise to the challenge. There’s serious scale to be had from these hefty cabinets, not to mention plenty of bottom end, thanks to that extra driver. For powerful dynamics, these speakers will be hard to beat for the money. That said, you will need a fair amount of space for them, including some space between them and a wall to avoid a boomy sound.

That’s not to say they’re one-dimensional or unable to do delicate. Massive Attack’s brooding slow-burner,Angel, starts slowly, with the Fyne F303s able to showcase impressive attention to detail and comfortable handling of subtle rhythms. They’re almost asking to be played at decent volume, but even at lower levels they demonstrate a good touch, with notes stopping and starting precisely. Voices have texture and warmth, not as immediate and open as some rivals, but with plenty of insight.

Timing is excellent throughout. Mala’s New Life Baby Paris has a complex drum pattern that can be hard to grasp, but these Fynes don’t slip for a second. The track again highlights the bass depth and weight on offer here, which will be hard to beat for the money.

The slight over-excitement in the treble that we heard on the smaller Fynes is still present, though tempered by the extra serving of bass. Only the most sensitive will find it off-putting, but it’s worth bearing in mind when matching the rest of your system.

Much as we could have second-guessed their sound based on their size relative to the smaller F302s, it’s a similar story when comparing the Dali Oberon 5s. The Dalis look like they’re in the year below at school and certainly don’t sound as big, bold or bassy.

Verdict

If you have room for a big pair of speakers, and you like an upbeat, fun sound, the Fyne Audio 303 speakers could be the ones for you. For weight and scale and outright excitement, these Fynes really are masters of their trade.

Lizz Wright’s sonorous pipes sound particularly fine, as do the lush strings on Feels Like Home – not overly warm but just right
8TOTAL SCORE
Fyne Audio F303 Review

Not the heaviest hitter but nimble and musical to its core

PROS
  • Crisp, clear and cultured sound with spry timing and an airy soundstage

As the larger of the floorstanders in the five-strong F series, the F303 boasts two 150mm multifibre paper coned mid/bass drivers with unusually contoured Variable geometry’ roll rubber surrounds for a non-homogenous interface and a more effective barrier to the cone’s energy, leading to a cleaner, more precise sound.

Sunk into a glossy black ‘head band’, the 25mm tweeter’s key parts are a polyester dome and a powerful neodymium magnet system. But integrated with the protective mesh cover is a so-called ‘phase loss compensator’, which delays output from specific areas of the dome to promote a smoother, more extended frequency response. Similar attention to detail and quality has been paid to the computer optimised (but critically fine-tuned by ear) crossover board, which uses high-grade components usually found in far more expensive designs. Spikes can be wound into the cabinet’s base with no critical stability issues. But for complete, wobble- proof security, plastic outriders are supplied, increasing height by a couple of inches as well as widening the footprint by a few more.

Sound quality

Far from the largest speaker in the group and among the lightest, the F303 is not the hardest hitter. What it does have, however, is speed and agility, a spacious and airy soundstage, snappy timing and a very smooth and even balance top to bottom.

The Fyne can seem a tad lightweight. and doesn’t seem to be pushed in the lower midrange to massage the impression of weight and body. Its bass won’t rustle the curtains, but it goes properly low and is fast, taut and articulate.

These qualities are shown off to good effect with Lump’s Late To The Flight, which kicks off with a deep bass monotone drone that initially seems to be acoustically bowed but morphs to electronic followed, about 30 seconds in, by hugely dynamic and cavernous bass twangs that pulse across the listening area like a wave. Most of the other speakers in the group do this with greater visceral force, but for attack and harmonic texture, the F303 has the edge. 

The loudspeaker’s super-sharp leading edges help Matt Bellamy and co. motor along at a pace and with great rhythmic impetus, they do so with a degree of treble ‘hash’ towards the track’s cacophonous climax. That said, Lizz Wright’s sonorous pipes sound particularly fine, as do the lush strings on Feels Like Home – not overly warm but just right

it offers an attractive alternative, living life a little faster and feistier with a clear penchant for fun but just as much respect for the music.

SUMMARY: the sheer, free-flowing energy of the performance isn’t sapped, hyped or otherwise manipulated by anything too overtly ‘hi-fi’, with the spirit, drive and dynamics taking centre stage, precisely as they should. 

REVIEW: A clue might be in the name, but to be honest, it isn’t much of a clue. Fyne Audio. Considerable pun potential apart, a manufacturer with a Scottish HQ seems a fair bet – not unlike legendary Scottish loudspeaker maker, Tannoy. More than just a coincidence? Absolutely. The tortuous machinations that accompanied ‘old’ Tannoy’s acquisition by The Music Group are very much related to the genesis of the entirely new speaker brand you see here. So, moving straight to go, target acquired.

Fyne Audio isn’t your average start-up. The name might be new, but the ex-Tannoy personnel behind it bring with them a combined 200 years of experience in the hi-fi industry. Safe to say, the old cliché ‘hits the ground running’ has seldom seemed more apt.

It’s probably not stretching things too far to speculate that the two model ranges launched so far suggest a design direction Tannoy might have taken had not almost the entire senior management, design, engineering, sourcing and sales team elected to leave and advance their ideas under a new flag. Put it this way: Fyne Audio’s head of design and engineering, Dr Paul Mills, was responsible for the way the last 30-years’ worth of Tannoy loudspeakers turned out.Echoes of Tannoy are, perhaps, inevitable and nowhere better illustrated than the point-source IsoFlare driver utilised in the more expensive 500-series, the range that also showcases an advanced type of downward-firing bass reflex port going by the name of Tractrix, which refers to a mathematically derived, cone-shaped diffuser that outputs more evenly than a conventional port and is less fussy about positioning.

Neither innovation figures in the lower-priced 300-series, the larger floorstander of the five-strong range we’re looking at here. But that doesn’t mean Fyne Audio is out of fresh initiatives or tantalisingly up-market flourishes. The F303’s brace of 150mm mid/bass drivers – above and below the tweeter in a d’Appolito arrangement for smoother integration – have multifibre paper cones with phase plugs at the centre to smooth midrange roll-off characteristics. Useful, but hardly ground breaking. The new thinking here is called FyneFlute technology and refers to the driver’s unusually contoured, ‘variable geometry’ roll rubber surround, which is said to provide a non-homogeneous interface to provide a more effective barrier for the cone’s energy, leading to a cleaner, more precise sound.

Uniformly black, and nattily sunk into a glossy black ‘head band’, the 25mm tweeter’s key parts are a polyester dome and a powerful neodymium magnet system. Again, nothing we haven’t seen before. But integrated with the protective mesh cover is a ‘phase loss compensator’, which delays output from specific areas of the dome to promote a smoother and more extended frequency response. Similar attention to detail and quality has been paid to the computer-optimised (but fine tuned by ear) crossover board, which uses high-grade components usually found in more expensive designs. Also rare in this price bracket are chunky gold-plated, bi-wire binding posts.

The F303 is surprisingly light for a tower standing 962mm tall, but that shouldn’t be confused with flimsy. It passes the knuckle-rap test, responding with a dull, short-lived, thud that carries no obvious ringing note. Fyne Audio says that exceptional rigidity is achieved through a combination of internally braced MDF panels and coupling the main drivers’ magnets to the cabinet’s bracing using a resonance-absorbing mastic.

The supplied spikes can be wound into the cabinet’s base with no critical stability issues, but for complete, wobble-proof security, plastic outriders are supplied. There’s a limited but classy choice of finishes comprising walnut, black oak or – as here – light oak. Each speaker has two magnetically attached grilles straddling the tweeter but, unlike the 500-series, they can’t be ‘stored’ on the back of cabinet when removed from the front. Such a neat idea.

Sound quality
As luck would have it, Q Acoustics’ 3050i (HFC 438) – at the time of writing, arguably the circa-£600 floorstander to beat – is installed in my larger listening room, so it makes perfect sense that it should be the act the F303 follows. Initially, front-end duties fall to my usual Yamaha CD-N301 network CD player (HFC 401) acting chiefly as a CD transport with an Emotiva BasX PT-100 preamp’s on-board AD1955 24/192 chip from Analog Devices taking care of digital conversion and the matching A-300 power amp (both reviewed HFC 429) driving the speakers. That setup is later swapped for a Cambridge Audio CXC CD transport (HFC 401), Chord Electronics Hugo 2 DAC (HFC 428) and Rega Elex-R integrated amp (HFC 420).

But first, setup. The Q Acoustics 3050i is bigger and bulkier than the Fyne Audio F303 and effortlessly drives the large room with the 150W per channel US power amp doing its bidding. Impressively, it’s a huge, walk-around sound that doesn’t want for bass weight and extension or naturally delivered detail and has a sort of huggable, over arching warmth that’s oh-so easy to relax into. A tad lush with slickly produced jazz in the Gregory Porter idiom? Just a hair.

The F303 fixes that, as an opening proposition it sounds more agile and assertive, up on its toes, tracking shifts in tempo with a lighter yet more incisive touch, delivering its bass in a tauter, faster fashion. Singing Hey Laura, Porter sounds somewhat leaner and meaner and less like he’s just necked a tin of golden syrup and, thus encouraged, soon the urge to progress to harder-hitting true blues proves irresistible.

Chris Bell’s Elevator To Heaven from his Real Bluesman album is properly slow and smoky, his guitar’s steely edge cutting through the mix like a sabre with a stunning ‘live’ rawness and presence, even though it’s a studio track. Santana’s live version of The Healer, sans John Lee Hooker, is just as scintillating, the F303 balancing the track’s laid back, chug-chug tempo against the searing virtuosity of Mr Santana’s sprinting guitar runs to perfection. Again, the sheer, free-flowing energy of the performance isn’t sapped, hyped or otherwise manipulated by anything too overtly ‘hi-fi’, with the spirit, drive and dynamics taking centre stage, precisely as they should. 

Easing back to a spot of softly lit Diana Krall and California Dreamin’ from her Wallflower album while taking the opportunity to usher in the Cambridge/Chord/Rega front-end, the 3050i projecting the grand stage for Krall to perform on with just the merest hint of a rosy glow filter, the F303 sounding a little less romantic and full bodied, but more insightful and intimate. With Desperado, Krall’s diction is marginally clearer on the F303.

Conclusion
Good news. Here’s a new speaker savvy enough not to take on a well-loved class stalwart, instead it offers an attractive alternative to Q Acoustics 3050i, living life a little faster and feistier with a clear penchant for fun but just as much respect for the music. DV

The F300s offer detail and clarity that contradicts their entry-level price tag, not to mention a bass weight that belies their size.
  • OUR VERDICT

  • Fyne Audio will have to drop the ball at some point, but with these capable F300s, the company has shown that this is not yet the time

  • FOR

  • Plenty of detail

  • Snappy timing

  • Lots of agile bass

  • SCORES

  • Sound 4

  • Compatibility 4

  • Build 5

In its first year of existence, Fyne Audio has shown that it has a gift for building class-leading floorstanding speakers – as a mantelpiece decorated with What Hi-Fi? Awards will attest – but it is by no means a given such aptitude will be reflected when the scale is reduced.

We’re putting the company’s F300 standmount speakers, which we recently tested as the rear channels in Fyne's F302 5.1 system, under the microscope as a stereo pair – and they’ve grasped their opportunity to shine.

Build and Compatibility

Resembling a passport photo of Fyne’s Award-winning F302 floorstanders, these diminutive bookshelf cabinets house the same 25mm polyester dome tweeter with a gloss black headband; below it sits a multi-fibre mid/bass driver that is similar to the F302s’ but smaller at 12.5cm in diameter.

It also features the same detailing on the surround of that driver: a tyre-like design built to aid solidity and reduce distortion. Spin the F300s 180 degrees and you’ll notice each has a rear-firing ported chamber for shoring up that low-end response, while a bracket can also be attached to the back of each speaker for wall mounting.

We wouldn’t suggest taking that route with the F300s, unless you are short on space and using them as rear channels in a home cinema system, but their stature (156mm wide and 211mm deep) makes them easy to accommodate.

That extends to their positioning as well. Not only has Fyne Audio priced its F300 range aggressively, its understanding of customers in this area of the market has contributed to some very unfussy designs.

The F300s don’t mind having their backs against the wall, nor in fact being as far out in the room as we’d place their floorstanding cousins. However, we prefer them somewhere in between, which tends to make the most of Fyne’s knack for timing and clarity while affording a good amount of sonic body.

Sound

Regardless of your preferred listening position, the F300s are capable of an admirably engaging performance. We’ve already mentioned Fyne’s mastery of timing, but its real triumph is that no particular talent sticks out – everything sits comfortably as a well-developed whole.

The F300s offer detail and clarity that contradicts their entry-level price tag, not to mention a bass weight that belies their size. While some competitors may over-pack the low-end frequencies, leaving their presentation sonically pear-shaped, or otherwise hint at bass notes without conviction, these slender standmounters are able to deal out bottom frequencies with insight, punch and relatively little fanfare.

There is still that slight coarseness in the upper register we’ve heard across the range, but that isn’t present in class leaders from Dali and Q Acoustics. The courseness can be tempered by savvy system building, while still making the most of these Fynes’ copious abilities.

What may be more difficult to dial in elsewhere in the chain is the extra excitement offered by those rivals. The F300s are by no means lacking in dynamic expression; they’re entertaining, often arresting and are able to convey both large- and small-scale shifts with relative ease.

But there just isn’t that infectious enthusiasm we’ve heard from their floorstanding siblings, that ability to reach out and pull you up to dance. It’s the difference between not wanting to and not being able to turn them off.

Verdict

Like the artist whose sculpture is already in the marble, there’s a gem here waiting to be found. Fyne Audio just needs to smooth a few more edges before the F300s can become a masterpiece like its F302 and F501 Award-winners. 

These are great bookshelf speakers for the money; it is just that they sound like great entry-level speakers rather than blur the lines between price categories, as their class-leading rivals do. 

These speakers are, for lack of a better word, stunning and demand your attention.

SUMMARY: The speakers handled the spacing of every instrument perfectly and the vocals had a huge sense of presence whether forward or further backward in the track.
Miles Davis and Modern Jazz Quartet. Trumpets, pianos and celesticas all rang out high and clear with perfect separation over soft drum beats.
Eager to test the bass, our store manager opted for a track from Killer Mike’s new album. Not phasing the speakers at all, the F501s threw bass notes that were more felt than heard and still retained volumes of clarity as lyrics were shot over the top of the window-rattling bass.

In this day and age, it takes a brave company to come into the world of hi-fi and try to make a mark against the heavyweights of the industry. However, with true stalwart Scottish spirit, this is exactly what Fyne Audio have done.

On their site, they’ve revealed that their seven strong management team have an astounding 200 years of combined experience in the hi-fi industry and that everyone on the team has worked together for at least ten years. This amount of time however, is not simply old dogs rehashing old ideas from the past and placing them in a new branded box – on paper there’s a lot of very interesting concepts coming from this exciting start up. We take the FYNE F501 floorstanders into the demo room to see if they’re worthy competition for an already strong market.

Straight out of the box, the speakers look and feel like a quality above their price point. With genuine wood veneers as opposed to vinyl finishes, it looks and feels like premium furniture, making it feel at home with other items in the room, and in the case of our demo room, look perfect next to gorgeous stands from the likes of Atacama. With gently rounded edges and finishes like this, there are only a few manufacturers near this price to make speakers that look so damn lovely, meaning that for sheer décor purposes the Fyne’s leave many a manufacturer in the dust.

There’s a clever design involving their grilles as well. In the stores, we all tend to remove the speaker grilles immediately so we can stare at the drivers in their various states of work and generally geek out a little over the products. We do appreciate however, that others may want their speaker to intrude less on their room, and as such pop the grilles on to make them less discrete. Fyne have clearly considered this as well. Not only the grilles able to cling onto the front of the speaker magnetically, leaving no unsightly holes on the front of the unit, but they can also mount to the back of the speaker as well. This means if you don’t always have them on, you won’t have to worry about where they’re going in the meantime.


Fyne Audio’s ‘IsoFlare’ driver

The drivers are another fascinating point. The solid titanium tweeter is embedded within the mid-range driver – not too dissimilar to KEF’s Uni-Q design or the dual concentric concept from another Scottish brand, Tannoy. Not to be outdone on the naming front, Fyne have called this design IsoFlare. By ‘flaring’ the assembly, this means that all the sweet treble will spread more evenly across the soundstage making for excellent stereo imaging even if your positioning isn’t perfect.

Another point in aid of positioning is the Basstrax Tractix Diffusing System, (okay, they may have gone overboard on the naming here). Similar to other bass porting from Tannoy, whereby the bass is projected into the room by a downwards port onto a plinth. However, Fyne have ensured that once again, diffusion into the room is evened out by their clever grille design – it looks sexy as well, which is a definite plus.

The final piece of engineering the team have created (that’s obvious to the eye at least) is their Fyneflute speaker surrounds. Look at nearly any speaker and realistically, you’re going to a see a round, rubber surround to each driver, allowing it to move forward and back to produce sound. However, this is always going to be a point of distortion for speakers. Different manufacturers have tried many different methods to resolve this. Monitor Audio use their RST drivers to dissipate anomalies at the driver itself, KEF use passive radiators to control bass and Dali spread their sound across extra drivers such as ribbon tweeters. However, with the Fynes – the flared edges to the driver cause them to do something quite special. As opposed to simply moving in a totally linear ‘in and out’ sense – the drivers twist through the motion. By doing this, colouration to the music is all but eliminated.

With all of this tech in mind – I (and a very curious and excited set of colleagues) got them running.

Opting immediately for something to challenge the speakers on their complexity, I used “Vicarious” by Tool. I was not disappointed. 

Happy to test the softer element of the speakers, other colleagues opted for Miles Davis and Modern Jazz Quartet. Trumpets, pianos and celesticas all rang out high and clear with perfect separation over soft drum beats. Whilst it may be somewhat true that the speakers prefer to be loud – ultimately they’re floorstanders, and when they sound this good, that’s no problem with us.

These speakers are, for lack of a better word, stunning and demand your attention. 

Testimonials

A great introduction into the world of hifi. I'm sure the Fyne range will prove popular".
Hi Terry 
"I picked up the Fyne F303 speakers from the depot on Friday. So they have arrived safe and sound. 

I know they will open up as they run in - but already they sound very good straight out of the box, nicely balanced - bass has some strength without dominating, some really nice detail with acoustic music. But best of all across all music types they are relaxing to listen too.  

A great introduction into the world of hifi. I'm sure the Fyne range will prove popular".

Regards
Jonthan Hamlet

Videos

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