Quadral

extensive range of superb yet competitively priced speakers from Germany
Our aim is for you to be able to enjoy quadral loudspeakers in your home for a long time..

A German loudspeaker company born in 1972, In 2009 Quadral started to renew their whole line-up and in 2010 Quadral took its new world class speakers international. Quote "Only those who know how to put quality into every last detail can impress and enthuse the true music and film sound con-noisseur in the long term".

Quadral may be a new brand to many outside of Europe but they are on the move and becomeing widely appreciated, They can already be found in over 30 countries around the globe. If you appreciate good music and are passionate about the outcome then it would be more than worth your while to come for a demo to discover the Quadral unqiueness.

AURUM ACOUSTICS, AESTHETICS, ADVANTAGES

To create something that lasts. To develop something that speaks equally to the eyes and ears. To design something that brings experience, tradition and craftsmanship together with the latest technology. To bring forth works that are not just of their time, but ahead of their time.

That is our challenge. And our promise. It is based on the best possible synthesis of acoustics and aesthetics, and it’s found in AURUM speakers.

An AURUM is not just any nice-sounding speaker. AURUM is backed by a philosophy that has been thought though to the last detail. An AURUM speaker is not developed just with our mind, but with our lifeblood. And AURUM speakers are not bought just with the mind, but also with the heart.

AURUM SPEAKER PHILOSOPHY

It is easy to promise the experience of new acoustic dimensions and immersion in the world of music or movie action. But how is it possible to actually hear and feel as well? So that you not only register the music but also truly appreciate and enjoy the full spectrum of its qualities? AURUM's aim is to achieve precisely that. To communicate music as a holistic experience. So that you become completely engrossed in your favourite music and listen with pure relish. The AURUM range's elegant looks alone promise an aesthetic pleasure and enjoyment. Just like valuable musical instruments which express their aspiration to optimum quality by way of their very appearance.

Your home environment. Our contribution.

The AURUM cabinets are given a particularly high-quality real wood finish so that they add a truly stylish touch to any living room. AURUM is a classically designed speaker that can be relied upon to blend discreetly into your home environment. Now the stage is set, and, even before the sound system is put into action, the expectations of an incomparable sonic experience are already there and growing. Expectations of an acoustic arrangement to lead you into completely new musical dimensions.

Your expectations. Our fulfilment.

Whether it is a large or small listening room, low or a concert auditorium volume that is required: there is an AURUM to meet your needs. The AURUM range covers each and every requirement, with compact bookshelf speakers that belie their dimensions by generating an atmosphere hardly thought possible, right through to impressive floor-standers offering an ideal synergy of extreme power-handling capacity and sophisticated performance at a level that serves as reference for all other loudspeakers in its category. Whether you wish to listen to your music in stereo quality or install a luxury-class multichannel speaker arrangement is completely irrelevant. The AURUM range offers all the components you need for upgrading to a top-class multichannel sound experience. With the expressive centre speaker AURUM BASE PRESTIGE T you can combine acoustics and aesthetics of the very highest quality. And this is no coincidence either, for inside each AURUM unit is a wealth of painstakingly developed and proven technology to ensure that you not only hear every last acoustic nuance but also get to enjoy them in a completely new way.

QUALITY

Only those who know how to put quality into every last detail can impress and enthuse the true music and film sound connoisseur in the long term.

Loudspeakers stand out agreeably from many other electronic devices. They're not disposed of after a relatively short period of usage, and can instead develop into a loyal friend that provides the user with in some cases even decades of listening pleasure.

QUALITY GUIDE

AURUM and Quadral – two names, one maxim: Pure quality for the very best of listening pleasure. Flexibility means freedom – freedom to enjoy any style of music in the very best of quality

There are lots of loudspeakers capable of high-quality music reproduction. Some know how to put over the sheer energy and power of rock music in a superb way. Others have an above-average talent for handling the demanding subtleties of classical music. And there are others that give disco music an authentic sheen or lend contemporary film soundtracks the right audio flair. In short: a lot of the speakers on the market are specialists – but not universalists. You enjoy listening to Mozart but also love the Rolling Stones? You go for the charisma of a saxophone solo played with emotion but also like listening to 80s pop? Then what you need is a loudspeaker that delivers homogeneous, harmonious and at the same time clear and exciting sound – regardless of which style of music you’re listening to. And if you enjoy the sound of complex, effect-laden films your “dream partner” is a speaker unit that has all the necessary qualities for an atmospherically intense film soundtrack reading. Your wishes are our motivation – to develop and build loudspeakers that leave a lastingly stunning impression is our priority maxim. Loudspeakers that impress with clarity and multifacetedness equally as much as with vigour and power.

High quality down to the very last detail – the secret behind boundless listening pleasure

homogeneously coherent, energy and emotion-laden overall experience is no easy undertaking. The most important bit: behind every speaker there has to be an intrinsically logical concept– a master plan, so to speak. And that, as we see it, means: high quality down to the very last detail, coupled with large portions of engineering spirit and painstaking commitment. Just take a close look at a quadral or AURUM speaker – let your eyes wander over the precision-fitted chassis, the meticulously finished edges of the cabinet, or the secure connection terminal. Each and every one of our speakers is as good as it is because we have no time for trivialities. Built to the highest standards of craftsmanship and equipped with sophisticated technology, each and every quadral or AURUM loudspeaker is designed and configured to give you literally decades of musical and movie soundtrack listening pleasure.

We believe innovations have to make sense – and serve the purposes of optimal sound for you at home

Not infrequently you can read about new materials and brilliant technical innovations that supposedly lend a loudspeaker unprecedented acoustic verve. In practice, however, disillusionment soon sets in, for these new heights of sound quality are only achieved on paper. Which is why we have this explicit message for AURUM and quadral enthusiasts – and all those who would like to be: We always see each innovation from one single point of view – it should make for perceptible improvement of the sound and not merely make it appear better in the technical data. Examples of this credo can be found in many of our speaker models, for instance “ALTIMA”, a diaphragm we developed and built using the high-tech light metals aluminium, titanium and magnesium and which is already legendary for its superb response in the low/middle frequency range. Our exclusive materials mix ensures enormous pulse fidelity – and thus authentic and honest reproduction of music and film soundtracks. The working principle used for obtaining optimum bass response in various models in the AURUM range lies in the combination of ALTIMA diaphragm plus pressure chamber and bass reflex system, and facilitates consistently deep-down, distortion-free basses even when handling dramatic dynamic leaps. We’re well prepared where treble response is concerned too: we don’t confuse clarity with aural aggressiveness nor brilliance with sharpness. Finding the right balance is of importance at all times in everyday life: our speakers already have it built in. Our development engineers are particularly proud of the high-performance ribbon tweeter as used in the top-of-the-range AURUM models TITAN, VULKAN and MONTAN. A superbly homogeneous sonic spread, effervescent brilliance which remains consistent even at higher volume levels, and a wide angle of radiation create the best basis for optimal listening pleasure.

Frequency distribution done properly – for a complete, inherently coherent sonic picture

Even the very best diaphragm and chassis technology can only then fully unfold its acoustic charisma if a cleanly designed, well thought-out crossover network prepares the way. Our credo here is: Nothing but the best components, as few as possible, as many as necessary. Put into practice, this already ensures the best basis in terms of frequency distribution, and the high-quality chassis units can process the sound in the working range for which they are designed. Fine, gentle, coherent transitions and a mature, complete sonic picture are the audible advantages arising from the painstaking care and finesse we put into our design. The orders for parts such as capacitors or coils for our crossover network systems are placed only with the best suppliers – after all, good sound already starts with the selection of the smallest components.

The loudspeaker should make music sound – and not itself

Ensuring consistently excellent sound reproduction of all music genres means ensuring that the cabinet itself doesn’t bring itself into play, in other words it should be absolutely rigid and free of vibration. It should also not generate intrinsic sound and instead should serve one purpose only, namely the acoustically authentic reproduction of incoming signals. For this reason our cabinets are not avant-garde design sculptures that are subject to short-lived trends and bring with them dubious acoustic characteristics. We believe in building cabinets featuring timeless design true to the principle of form follows function and the elegantly sober lines of which correspond optimally with absolute acoustic functionality.

Also a secret of our success – the effective deployment of incoming power

Maybe you know the problem: Here a top-of-the-range loudspeaker, there a premium-class amplifier, yet the sonic picture they produce together just won’t come over as a coherent whole because – seeing as it’s designed solely for optimal fidelity but not for maximum power yield – the amp can’t work with a loudspeaker which for its part is power-hungry and weak in terms of efficiency. This is a problem you certainly won’t encounter with our products. Our speakers are designed to offer excellent efficiency, which means you have an absolutely free choice and don’t have to make any type of compromise where signal-generating electronic equipment is concerned. High-quality AURUM or quadral speakers have no problem whatsoever in working with highly sophisticated class AA amp units and guarantee a harmonious, detailed sonic picture.

The right partner for all tasks – our multi-channel “experts”

Blu-rays, DVDs or SACD and DVD audio discs in most cases have multichannel sound tracks which in their entirety are translated into sound; this sound is delivered to the listener via a set of loudspeakers generally comprising two front speakers, a centre unit and two surround speakers as well as an active subwoofer. This is why we regard it as matter of course to offer complete, perfectly intermatched multi-channel configurations. Our large and our compact centre speakers too impress with optimal harmonization with the front units and above-average angles of radiation – the result of which is that music, voices and effects come over with equally high degrees of clarity and intensity. Our highperformance active subwoofers are equal to virtually any challenge in the low-frequency range, and thus give modern film productions the right audio foundation.

Equipped for the new age: with AURUM into the acoustic HD era

Blu-ray has now been established as sole successor to the DVD format, and this means changes to both the visual as well as acoustic preconditions. Drastically increased sampling frequency levels and a significantly greater bit depth as against the DVD enable previously undreamt-of results in terms of sound. In the form of Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio there are two HD sound formats available which ensure loss-free compression of the audio data. The result: sound with precisely the radiance intended by the sound engineers when doing the mixing. Greatest possible dynamics, outstanding transparency and incredible acoustic precision are the stunning characteristics of the new HD sound formats. With our AURUM loudspeakers we offer you the right instruments for getting the very most out these formats. Their tremendous frequency response characteristics, superb high-tech chassis units, painstakingly built cabinets and incredibly high power-handing capacity make each and every one of our AURUM sound system components the right companion for entering the acoustic HD age.

The bottom line as we see it: Only those who know how to put quality into every last detail can impress and enthuse the true music and film sound connoisseur in the long term.

Loudspeakers stand out agreeably from many other electronic devices. They’re not disposed of after a relatively short period of usage, and can instead develop into a “loyal friend” that provides the user with in some cases even decades of listening pleasure. This makes purchasing loudspeakers something that should be approached carefully and with deliberation. We have no doubts whatsoever that our products will stand up to the closest scrutiny in terms of both looks and sound – after all, our AURUM and quadral loudspeakers are exactly what you’re looking for: loyal, reliable companions that make for daily listening pleasure based on outstanding harmony, acoustic radiance, power and clarity. Irrespective of whether you’re having an intensive listen to Wagner’s Ring cycle or enjoying lounge music in the background during dinner – AURUM or quadral speakers are your guarantee for never failing to find precisely the right combination of homogeneity and sonic effervescence.

Reviews

Awards

Testimonials

Reviews

Quadral Aurum Wotan VIII
AUDIO VIDEO MAGAZINE

These precisely crafted loudspeaker systems have a universal delivery with very solid and dynamic basses, brilliant mid tones and exceptionally detailed, fine and lofty highs. Exceptional praise is also much deserved for the brilliant reproduction of mid tones,contributing to the overall transparency and openness of the system's expression. Deep tones resonate energetically with particular vigour.

SOUND 95%
BALANCE 90%
SURROUND SOUND 95%
DESIGN 95%
CATEGORY 50,000 to 100,000 CZK  (NZ$4,000 - NZ$8,000) 95%

As indicated by the Roman numerals in the name of the tested product, the Aurum Wotan VIII floor speaker systems represent the eighth generation of the mentioned model. The presence of the now eighth generation of the Wotan loudspeaker system also hints that the protagonists of the Quadral brand, a brand that has been in the market since nineteen-seventies, can boast about tradition and most importantly know-how.

Many fans of the hardcore high-end category know about the now legendary high volume company models Titan and Vulkan that are now produced in their seventh, respectively eighth generation. The seekers of high fidelity sound should not overlook the more compact option in the high end class, where this tested model finds itself. The Wotan VIII model, which by the way received the 2010 iF Product Design Award (iF-International Forum Design GmbH), offers exceptional electro-acoustic features. The editorial listening test found that in a relatively compact package, available at a budget price, which in terms of the high end category appears to be quite attractive, offers an exceptionally transparent reproduction in the mid and high tones in combination with an incredibly solid bass base.

Inconspicuous appeal of the baffle

The bass reflex baffle with a height of only 92 cm and a width exceeding 19 cm is constructed from solid wood fibreboard and from the outline view it has really large dimensions. The essential internal volume of the elegant yet subtle cabinet is provided for by the relatively large depth of the speaker system. In its deeper lower part it is over 40 cm.
From the side view, the front wall of the baffle and the top and bottom horizontal walls do not form a right angle, but rather are slightly tilted backwards. The tilt is only very slight - the front wall forms an angle to the horizontal plate of about 92.5 degrees. As a result of the described design feature the axis of the tweeters is tilted a little, facing slightly upwards. This comes in handy because, thanks to the smaller dimensions of the baffle, the tweeters are positioned relatively low. For example the centre of the high tone ribbon tweeter is found at a height of a mere 81 cm from the floor (measured without the adjustable pins attached). Another pleasing design detail is the aesthetically curved edges of the cabinet and the original shape of the walls with a backward overhang. The surface of the loudspeaker system is adorned by a luxurious black piano high-gloss lacquered finish. The company catalogue also contains the option of a white piano lacquered finish and three types of natural veneers. For a fee it is possible to order a custom lacquered finish, according to one's preference from an extensive sampler containing 210 colour tones.

Hi-tech Quadral tweeters

The three-way loudspeaker system is equipped with a total of four carefully crafted Quadral tweeters, of particular interest is the visually bewitching trio of mid-bass tweeters of the identical diameter of 135 mm. However, they do not resonate in the same acoustic band. The top tweeter from the visually identical trio resonates "only" mid tones, which are not distorted by the potentially large vibrations of the membrane, which is characteristic of the lower two tweeters, designated exclusively for the reproduction of deep tones.

All three mid-bass tweeters have a very solid conical membrane, which the manufacturer named Altima. This acronym is formed by the short forms of the words aluminium, titanium and magnesium. The solid cone made from an aluminium, titanium and magnesium alloy guarantees a precise piston movement of the membrane during its vibration without the undesirable form deformations in its generally critical outer parts. The tweeters can also boast a precisely structed bearing cage, pressure cast from a light metallic alloy and an effective permanent double magnet. Belonging in the hi-tech category is also the unique company high tone tweeter with a robust metal chassis, effective permanent neodymium magnets and an extremely light ribbon membrane, able to resonate also "bat level" ultrasound frequencies up to 65 kHz.

Crystal clear highs of ribbon membranes

Notwithstanding the fact that the Wotan VIII systems have a very dynamic bass performance, what is perhaps even more surprising when listening to them for the first time, are the exceptionally clear, detailed and fine high tones, produced by the mentioned hi-tech ribbon tweeter. Even though the highs are presented very clearly and openly, thanks to the absence of any signs of coarseness or aggression, to the human ear they are extremely gentle and smooth. The form of delivery can be compared to the extremely transparent character of reproduction of high frequencies on expensive electrostatic systems. Such preciseness, loftiness of reproduction of the surround sound scene combined with the acoustic fineness given by the representation of fast transient signals through the very light ribbon membrane is achieved only with great difficulty on conventional high tone tweeters with standard calotte membranes.

Brilliant mid tones and rock solid basses

Exceptional praise is also much deserved for the brilliant reproduction of mid tones,contributing to the overall transparency and openness of the system's expression. Deep tones resonate energetically with particular vigour. The duo of smaller bass tweeters with rigid membranes responds very quickly to energetically demanding deep tone mpulses. They can figuratively be compared to the pistons in the racing car engine. As a result of the perfect reactions of the membranes, without the undesirable deformations on the cone's outer margins during vibration, the resonated low frequencies have exceptional lucidity and a dynamic character. The mid and deep basses are perfectly firm. The area of higher basses in the band around 100 - 120 Hz presents itself with relative agility, almost piercingly. Despite a certain tendency of the Wotan VIII model to present higher basses almost too strikingly, the complete reproduction of the deep tones deserves a very positive assessment. "Rock" solid, fast, clearly articulated and really very dynamic basses are simply a joy to listen to. The universally sounding Quadral Aurum Wotan VlIl, which does not shy away from any musical genre (perfectly reproduces acoustic and electronic music) without a doubt deserves a recommendation from the editors.

AUDIO Video VERDICT

These precisely crafted loudspeaker systems have a universal delivery with very solid and dynamic basses, brilliant mid tones and exceptionally detailed, fine and lofty highs.

SOUND 95%
BALANCE 90%
SURROUND SOUND 95%
DESIGN 95%
CATEGORY 50,000 to 100

,000 CZK (NZ$4,000 - NZ$8,000) 95%

The Platinum M4 makes immediately obvious that it has a spectacular presence and extent of low frequencies.
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE

High Fidelity (Greece) -  BEST CHOICE award with 97% score rating!
High Fidelity (Greece) - Editors Choice award

The Platinum M4 was a pleasant surprise sound and of course distinguished for quality of construction. It will not say no to many dB, the rock bass and electronics, but also respects and other types of music thanks to the abundant presence in the middle frequencies, the very good analysis, the accuracy of the stage and very good openness and inseparable.
Is this not what it is all about?

Quadral is a sophisticated large company from Germany that combines business with the qualitative character of the large range, as happens, say the Klipsch and Monitor Audio in U.S. and  G.B respectively.

The speaker that we received for testing is the very best hi-fi series Platinum M, which lies just below the hi-end series of Aurum, and the least we can say is that we were impressed with the workmanship.

The sizes can not be hidden so the Platinum M4 is a three-way loudspeaker with two woofers in parallel, what should one say about promising dynamic range bass.  At the same time, charging includes compression chamber in front of the loudspeakers and very large hole in the back, creating an unusual and striking picture on the front with metal grilles.
 
The M4's design is good and there are no annoying colors.  The lacquer finish is enough quality in standard category, and the large cloth standing in place with magnets for a cleaner look.

The M4 uses custom speakers from specially treated aluminum and a very special tweeter with Titanium ring as  radiator and a centrally located foam which makes it show a little strange and unusual picture, is completed with double metallic rivet in front of  him in the role of dispersions.  The speaker has also an independent second flange wood joined with four metal legs close to the main cabin and accept spikes.

Listen

The Platinum M4 makes immediately obvious that it has a spectacular presence and extent of low frequencies.Watching more, it becomes obvious that the German  speaker  low freguency is free and spread out with a characteristic calm in space.

Equally unusual is  the treble, and these with some  fine tuning traces of the titanium but obviously designed with a more "free" behavior time domain, as illustrated from the very airy,  extended and detailed sound.

Eventually, all this operate for the speaker benefit of the midrange, which is clearly the best that heard from metal diaphragms in this test. It has smoothness deep, rich texture, color correct and very low deformation is also fast and  quiet, and ultimately breathes a slide that did not expect to collect from a mainstream product.

The soundstage is also charismatic, and combines the large size and holographic imaging with excellent focus and depth of almost perfect, with clear levels and rich information space. The rhythm finally captured with almost perfect way.

Finally
The Platinum M4 was a pleasant surprise sound and of course distinguished for quality of construction. It will not say no to many dB, the rock bass and electronics, but also respects and other types of music thanks to the abundant presence in the middle frequencies, the very good analysis, the accuracy of the stage and very good openness and inseparable.
Is this not what it is all about?

The Quadral Aurum Wotan is really top class.
Stereo 6 (German Hi-Fi magazine)
Summary:
The Aurum Wotan creates real listening pleasure. Very selective, but not with exaggerated reproduction as well as excellent voice reproduction, all combined with crisp bass, exceptional sense of timing and rhythm as well as the overall appearance, even though it is very complex.  Elaborate fittings together with the exceptionally pronounced tuning make the Aurum Wotan from Quadral a real treat. The Quadral Aurum Wotan is really top class. 
The top of the range Wotan speaker, which is an 8th generation speaker, has already been included in Quadral’s range and this model reflects the ongstanding tradition of its legendary predecessors. To its credit the Aurum Wotan is superbly configured, thanks to its ribbon tweeter. This model will gain an adiophile reputation as fast as Donnerhall, even when it is not used in conjunction with its big sister, the Aurum Titan. 

All-in-all it is rather rare to find this type of tweeter used in expensive sound transducers, not least with regard to the considerable manufacturing complexity and the very high requirements regarding the coupling to the mid ranges.

Slender appearance:

Even though it weighs more than 19 kilos, this Quadral is still visually attractive, with an up-scale yet graceful appearance, which together with its specifications makes it ideally suited for use in a living room. It has already been awarded a design prize (IF Product Design Award 2010). The sloping rear panel is acoustically beneficial, as it prevents the formation of standing waves and ensures that the minimum distance from the wall is always maintained.  
The 135 mm diameter woofer, which is fitted with three “ALTIMA” membranes made from aluminium, titanium and magnesium guarantee a physically perceptible low pressure area in your home. From a technical point of view this has more to do with a real three-way bass reflex speaker here, as the crossover frequencies lie at 330 and 3,200 Hertz.
The Wotan VIII’s tone is exceptionally homogeneous, full and even sharp instruments such as a piano, are reproduced finely and they fade away authentically. The timing as well as the bass precision are both “right on the dot” and the really infectious swing factor and the drive, which can always be turned up, are remarkable. Sovereign, stress-free, rhythmic and superb – a superb speaker for the money.  

LABORATORY COMMENTS
Extremely well balanced amplitude curve for average efficiency factor and very low distortion. The impedance cureve just slips below the 3 ohm limit in the bass range; the amplifier is very steady.

 PRICE/PERFORMANCE RATIO - EXCELLENT

A massive sound but one that is both fast and accurate, with delicious detail and imaging - Awarded 5 GLOBES
Noel Keywood
verdict five globes 
Precision sound stage - Clear midband - Tonally balanced - Deep, fast bass,

Big loudspeakers often have strong characteristics, massive bass and excess treble too. Quadral have tried and largely succeeded in producing a sound of large scale but great control in the Vulkan VIII – not properties that are easy to combine. It runs cleanly from the highest highs down to the lowest lows without unnatural emphasis over the entire audio range. This is a dry, controlled, finely balanced but accurate loudspeaker. With copious dynamics, it is big hearted too, yet goes from loud to soft with an alacrity that is rare. This gives it a smooth ability that defies other loudspeakers. 

the Vulkan VIII is one impressive loudspeaker. If you want to hear a thoroughly modern, well engineered loudspeaker, with fantastic imaging and amazing detail, plus deep, fast bass, this is one you should hear. I'm happy to report it didn't burst into flame either, so it gets full five globes.  

From Quadral comes the massive Vulkan VIII loudspeaker. German for volcano, would it live up to its fiery name, 
 
 Vulkan with a ‘k’ is German for volcano, harking back to the Roman God of volcanic fire, Vulcan. Would it set our listening room alight I wondered? How many Globes would it get if it did? Hmmm...
 As a loudspeaker designer myself I know the various approaches and their justifications and can sense what the designers of the Vulkan VIII had on their mind with this towering monster, one that stands 1.27 metres high no less. A metal coned midrange and ribbon tweeter will together sound ‘fast’, but it is difficult to get equivalently ‘fast’ bass able to keep up and you end up with a two part loudspeaker, sound wise. Deep bass can be wrung from ports, and plenty of it if a couple of 8in drive units are used, as in Tannoy’s DC8T.
 This solution never gives the bass slam of a big 12in or 15in bass unit in a giant cabinet. It is something many crave once they have heard it, usually from big, old loudspeakers bearing resemblances to a broom cupboard. Having lived with Leak 2075s and then Leak 3090s, followed by Tannoy Yorkminsters I know a thing or three about this broom cupboard experience. It’s like having one thrown at you!
 
However, use a 12in bass unit in a loudspeaker and you are faced with a monster in the lounge. Just look at contributor Adam Smith and his Leak 2075s, with their Leak Sandwich 13in bass units. Great aren’t they! But the front of such a loudspeaker stretches out to broom cupboard width to accommodate a 13in sandwich bass unit and not everyone is happy about the visual result, namely the rest of the family. Also, wide front baffles image badly.

 Faced with this problem manufacturers are tempted to put the bass unit on the side of the loudspeaker, but then it cannot handle anything above 100Hz. Quadral use a massive 32cm bass unit (12.6in) in the Vulkan VIII, mounted on an angled baffle and vented though front and side panels. This approach allows them to keep the front baffle acceptably narrow, just 29 cms, which lessens the sense of looming presence. And you’ll be happy to know that a 32cm bass unit still has more cone area than two 8in (20cm) bass units, giving more slam.

So although you cannot see it, the big Vulcan VIII is a three way, and a heavy one too, weighing 55kgs apiece. It is ported and you cannot see this either, because the port is underneath, firing downward. A plinth holds the cabinet just above the floor to provide breathing room, as it were, with a rear facing vent. So the Vulkan VIII is a three-way with reflex loaded '12in' bass unit, all cleverly arranged so as not to look like a broom cupboard. Big bass units consistently produce low distortion, our measurements show, and give cleaner, tighter bass than struggling 8in units, so the Vulkan VIII has potential.
 Quadral go to all this trouble to engineer in bass that can keep up temporally with their 17cm Altima midrange unit and this in turn must keep up with their large ribbon tweeter. The Altima midrange uses a “blend of the three light metals, aluminium, titanium and magnesium” they say, to avoid the metallic coloration of aluminium cones, and the sluggishness of plastic cones.
However, it is the ribbon tweeter that sets the pace, because these things are fast, as well as clean. The Vulkan VIII has Quadral’s own design, newly enlarged to go lower and louder, +10dB louder they say. All the ribbon tweeters I have used in the past reached down to 4kHz, leaving an awkward gap to be filled by expecting rather too much from the midrange unit. Quadral’s ribbon reaches down to 2kHz they say, so no gap! Big ribbons that go low have been done before, notably by Celestion’s Graham Bank, but they are difficult to make and expensive.
There appear to be five different finishes but ours came in deep gloss black. The rear connecting panel has sturdy screw terminals that allow bi-wiring and accept bare wires, spades or 4m plugs. As you might expect, the Vulkan is very well built and finished.
SOUND QUALITY
 There is no running preface to sound quality because – thankfully – our review samples came run in. We ran them for 24 hours with Monitor Audio’s De-Tox disc and I started listening with our Icon Audio 845 valve monoblock power amplifiers set to 4 Ohms. In this case bass seemed a bit one-note and boofy and not quite right. As there is an input blocking capacitor on the Vulkans this may well need to ‘see’ a low source impedance, which it would not with a valve amplifier. Swapping over to our tight, dry sounding Musical Fidelity AMS50 pure Class A transistor power amplifier largely cured these woes. In our listening room I also found it better to use the Vulkans with bass unit facing outward, rather than inward as in our initial setup. So positioned, and firing straight down the room, is how the Vulkans were reviewed.
Quadral put effort into getting an evenly balanced loudspeaker, a property I greatly value, and the Vulkans follow their philosophy closely. With no peaks or dips or artificial emphases, our measurements show, they sounded deliciously smooth and natural, rare with ribbon equipped loudspeakers whose designers like to raise treble just to demonstrate the arresting properties of ribbon treble units – enormous, speed, detail and incision. Quadral have resisted this, so I found I could enjoy their lovely ribbon unit without having to wince at sonic lances, for ribbon tweeters to can be challenging if too forward. The midrange unit integrates well, with no change of character to mar crossover, and bass has been engineered to be tight and fast, rather than large and obvious. For such a large loudspeaker bass energy was held in strong check; the Vulkans are not Tannoys! Doing this helps the loudspeaker play a bass tune, by keeping slow-to-decay  subsonics in check.
Moving up and down in front of the loudspeaker showed vertical integration very good out at normal listening distances – rather better than dome tweeter loudspeakers. Best ear height was just below the ribbons but the change in sound balance was not great as I moved further up or down. Listening on the central axis of the ribbon unit, meaning high up, did add in the hiss of strong high treble at times, but only from CDs possessing a lot of high frequency content.
The opening drum strike of Angelique Kidjo’s ‘Agolo’ was muted in terms of subsonic content. It came and went quickly, sounding powerful but well damped. There was none of the resonant boom that I often hear from ported loudspeakers. The ribbons set out a wonderfully clear, sharply etched sound stage on which every instrument had a perfectly defined place – a real strength of ribbon tweeters, and one the big Vulkan exploits beautifully. With the ribbons sitting high, 110 cms above the floor, the sound stage has a celestial quality, something I always enjoy. And with plenty of treble bouncing off side walls the stage sounds wide, even though we use big acoustic damping pads on our walls as part of the room’s acoustic treatment. Maracas rang out clearly and fine metallic percussion instruments hung in space beautifully.
Swathes of intricate detail accompanied the backing singers and the layered instruments of Kidjo’s backing band, bringing a lovely busy feel to proceedings. The Vulkans sound clean and distortion free, yet although they move along at a brisk pace, they sound relaxed. Able to resolve strong dynamic contrasts this makes for a loudspeaker that is fleet of foot yet engagingly dynamic too.
 
Turning volume right up with Adele’s ‘Rolling in the Deep’ the Vulkans became wickedly loud but stayed relaxed and clean, nearly blowing me back over the settee. Kick drum was both tightly controlled and powerful too. ....the, bass comes over as tight, dry and powerful, giving the big Vulkans a solid kick. Adele’s vocals were perfectly formed and had all the power expected from them.
Listening to Nigel Kennedy playing Vivaldi’s ‘Spring’ brought up an interesting discussion with Rafael Todes, of the Alegri String Quartet. Nigel’s Stradivarius came across as big and solid in nature, smooth and deeply detailed – impressive by any standard. There was not the phasiness so common on dome tweetered rivals, doubtless due to the ribbon tweeter. Rafael liked the sound of the Vulkans but agreed that there was some “sheen” in the sound as he put it, having owned a Stadivarius like Nigel's for some years. The English Chamber Orchestra sounded large and lush behind Nigel, instruments well differentiated from each other in a clean sweep behind him.
The Vulkans captured the deep, resonant tones of Jackie Leven singing  ‘Desolation Blues’ and made him as large sounding as he was in life. They saw right into this recording, surrounding him with floods of fine detail, as well as cues into the surrounding studio, in a performance that came over as easy, unforced yet powerful. Deep male vocals highlight box colour though and again I became aware of some slight boxiness, almost certainly coming from the big bass unit. It was a relatively minor effect though and unintrusive.
CONCLUSION
Big loudspeakers often have strong characteristics, massive bass and excess treble too. Quadral have tried and largely succeeded in producing a sound of large scale but great control in the Vulkan VIII – not properties that are easy to combine. It runs cleanly from the highest highs down to the lowest lows without unnatural emphasis over the entire audio range. This is a dry, controlled, finely balanced but accurate loudspeaker. With copious dynamics, it is big hearted too, yet goes from loud to soft with an alacrity that is rare. This gives it a smooth ability that defies other loudspeakers. 
With so much effort in the design, including a good understanding of how to tie together the various components in subjective terms to achieve a cohesive whole, rather than a disparate set of sonic parts, the Vulkan VIII is one impressive loudspeaker. If you want to hear a thoroughly modern, well engineered loudspeaker, with fantastic imaging and amazing detail, plus deep, fast bass, this is one you should hear. I'm happy to report it didn't burst into flame either, so it gets full five globes. Vulcan may not be so happy – but I was.
 
 A massive sound but one that is both fast and accurate, with delicious detail and imaging.
MEASURED PERFORMANCE
Our pink noise frequency response shows the Vulkan VIII has an impressively flat frequency response (green) with the measuring microphone vertically aligned midway between ribbon tweeter and midrange unit, putting it at typical ear height. Vertical dispersion of the ribbon is sharply defined. Although vertical dispersion is constrained, like most ribbon tweeters, lateral dispersion is smooth and wide, so Quadral’s big ribbon throws quite a lot of treble energy out into a room and this will give the Vulkan VIII a bright demeanour, even though the on-axis response may seem to suggest otherwise (depending upon where the ear is).

At low frequencies the bass unit reaches down to 70Hz and the large underside port takes over below this frequency, peaking at 30Hz our red trace shows. This puts a lot of bass energy into the room, the port being a huge drainpipe affair (large ports produce less distortion). Bass does not peak up and is in good balance our response measurement shows. A decay graph showed low coloration except for an overhang at 80Hz.
Sensitivity was very high, the Vulkan producing 92dB sound pressure level from one nominal watt of input (2.8V). In fact, with a very low impedance of 5 Ohms overall they consumed more power than one watt, but they need little power to go loud all the same, 40W is enough. An infinite DCR value suggests Quadral are using an input capacitor. Our impedance trace shows the loudspeaker is almost perfectly resistive and an ideal amplifier load, so it is not difficult to drive.
The Vulkan VIII is a relatively accurate loudspeaker providing it is listened to just below the ribbon tweeter. It will have a bright character all the same, but should sound quite dry in its bass.
......NK
... immediately wins the impressions.... that it is designed based on the tonal balance,.. an an all-around (general purpose)
Mr Papageorgiou - Greek web audio mag

Given the price, Quadral is a very good suggestion for anyone looking for a floor standing speaker with significant potential on level, tonal balance and a comprehensive approach that makes it suitable for every type of music.  Add to this the quality of construction and will find yourself opposite a very attractive package.

Greek test review at an online web magazine, a translation of the review by Mr Papageorgiou
 
The Quadral the M4 replaced the speakers that I use on a regular basis as a reference (ATC SCM-50PSL) and driven by the Parasound HCA3500. The rest of the system is known (Teac Esoteric P70/D70 online through Nirvana DC-110 and Melos Plus Series Line). To set up the M4 requires the usual attention, as each speaker floor low enough energy. In my case I got very good result at a distance of half a meter from the rear walls and a little more distance from the lateral...
 
The first impression which one listening to the M4 is a speaker that works comfortably with no signs of fatigue and compression, even at high levels. The speaker immediately wins the impressions at hearing (and not referring to aesthetics here) showing clearly that it is designed based on the tonal balance, but having in mind that there should be an all-around (ie general purpose ...) speaker to the listener thanks and honors all genres. The Quadral sounded remarkably low, slightly more bulky than what I used reference from the speakers, but this is not done at the expense of detail or balance....
 
The midrange was presented mild projective, creating a sense of closeness that is never intrusive, even at high levels, but adds to the imposing presence of the speaker. Works with vocals rendered with naturalness, perfect lensing of soloists and many details in the articulation and textures while the choruses are also attributed correctly. 
 
The region of high frequencies is perhaps the most characteristic of the speaker and creates a sense of transparency, surface area and very good control. The speaker here must be as fast, full and accurate with minimal body thinner than the reference, is bright without being exaggerated and creates an impression of uniformity makes the overall sound relaxed and pleasant to depart without a character or hide details.
 
The M4, probably because of the narrow, easily disappears and gives way to a good stereo image width and several lensing features individual sound sources in both the horizontal and transverse axis. The listener has the feeling that sits at an average distance from the hypothetical stage and receives a mix of many details that include elements of room acoustics, and air traffic between the institutions, thus creating a sense of realism and attracting the attention of the listener contents.
 
Finally ...
 
... given the price, Quadral is a very good suggestion for anyone looking for a floor standing speaker with significant potential on level, tonal balance and a comprehensive approach that makes it suitable for every type of music. Add to this the quality of construction and will find yourself opposite a very attractive package.
I view Quadral’s Titan VIII as a very special offer amongst top speaker models.
Jörg Dames

At this price I couldn’t think of another which combines this level of music-serving accuracy with such impressive power and pressure. As such this speaker is an open portal to a very direct and emotional connection with the music. The only departure from this in the very positive sense of the word utterly uncomplicated presentation was a minor elevation in the low bass. But even mediocre mastering jobs remained fun and this speaker was simultaneously capable to reach deep on audiophile productions.

* The Titan VIII offers very immediate, emotional and stress-free access to the music. 
* A grand high-pressure presentation without seams. 
* High transparency, precision and resolution never intrude but serve the music as a matter of underlying fact.
* Top dynamics both micro and macro.
* An airy, fine and highly informative treble without nervousness or agitation. 
* Particularly praiseworthy is the accurate rendering of textures and sustains.
* A tonally perfectly even and satisfyingly differentiated midband. 
* Voices and instruments are endowed with just the perfect measure of warmth and natural color.
* A very 'mature' infrasonic authority. The bass is generally perfectly integrated... 
* Involving soundstaging perfectly detached from the boxes. Image sharpness and plasticity aren't extraordinary but solid.
* High fit 'n' finish and high material returns even relative to the not insignificant sticker. 
* Last but not least: very high power handling.

Heavy weights and heavy hitters? I do find the fat Titan logo at the base of today’s speaker a bit showy like an anchor tattoo on a sailor’s bulging biceps. That said, someone to market for 31 years with presently an eighth generation of products as proudly tracked on their website does have cause to blow their own trumpet a bit. The ‘tattoo’ of the original Titan developed by Helmut Schaper well prior to any URL was even fatter as the old photos prove.
 
And Quadral’s Titan VIII really wasn’t built to serve as poster child for loudspeaker understatements. Biometric specs of 139 x 31 x 58cm HxWxD and 88kg per side alone make that impossible. The progenitors of the VIII include even beefier specimens. The Titan III for example heaved 140kg atop your scale and topped out at 150cm height. Oy!
 
I certainly appreciated this downscaled titan not only for A/B comparisons (assistance from a colleague was still mandatory) but as a probably more suitable solution for my 30m² space. But let’s put aside size and check out what else Quadral’s Titan VIII puts on the decision scale. Quite a bit as it turns out. One difference to other current Aurum Series models as well as to the Titan VII precursor requires a close-up glance through the fine tweeter mesh. Here sits not a magnetostat but ribbon. 12cm long, about 20mg heavy and at 15µm thickness ultra efficient—lip blowing through the protective grid or getting anywhere near it with a vacuum cleaner are major taboos—this is a quite costly part to manufacture but developer Sascha Reckert claims "lower distortion and heightened speed and micro resolution" in trade.
 
To better match this ribbon the next driver is a newly developed 16cm midrange which looks just like other Altima units which this makers already employs across various speaker models. Yet this one is still distinguished by a shorter voice coil, stronger motor, copper shorting rings and different glues and spider as explained by Reckert. Readers unfamiliar with prior fairaudio reviews of Quadral speakers will be unfamiliar with the Altima term. It’s a contraction for aluminium, titanium and magnesium. It's a special diaphragm alloy said to improve speed and impulse response whilst undermining undesirable ringing modes. Former designer Berndt Stark introduced this material already in 2000’s Aurum 6 model.
 
In the basement the Titan VII’s burly 38cm woofer has been replaced with two long-throw 25cm units. In typical fashion for bigger Aurum models, those are set back behind the baffle to create a small pressure chamber. With rising frequencies this increases the counter pressure of the air trapped inside the enclosure to raise the energy transfer. Advantages include higher sensitivity, lowered excursion and greater power handling. This loading is supported with a bass reflex port which fires downward into the floor.
 
The crossover filter runs the paralleled woofers to about 250Hz and the midrange to ca. 2.800kHz. Slopes are 12dB and a steep 24dB respectively. Herr Reckert isn’t too fond of general discussions on the pros and cons of steep vs. shallow slopes since each speaker design has unique requirements. Regardless of actual steepness, what’s important to him is "avoiding sharp-edged responses in the overlap region between drivers".
 
To give music fiends something to fuss with, Quadral has endowed its new VIII with a few switches below the network window to adjust the response to taste or room. Neutral can be raised or lowered by 2dB for the bass, midrange and treble units respectively. Which now should be enough foreplay to leave grey theory behind and get to hopefully high-color practice. Here it required no golden ears to quickly appreciate that it’s not merely the name which suggests authority. Quadral’s Titan VIII sounded decidedly like a big speaker. My not really petite Thiel CS3.7 generated noticeably less shove and subsonic nonchalance during macrodynamic attacks.
 
On soundstaging too the Hannoverians played it more generous. Particularly impressive was height which clearly was due to their ca. 1.4-meter profile. I was a bit taken aback though to suddenly realize just how much more infrasonic pressure and output hid in the Legendary Pink Dot’s "Rainbows Too" from their Plutonium Blonde album and how massive and compelling this hypnotically limping song can really sound.
 
Moving right along, "Afterglow" from A Gilded Eternity by London’s sadly disbanded drone rockers Loop can easily feel too bright and lightweight when its bass drum impact isn’t properly excavated. Even bigger floorstanders can ran afoul here on occasion but the Titan handled this cut extraordinarily robust and convincing. This came off without any special effects bombast to sound spectacular, accurate and relaxed all at once.
 
This casual effortlessness clearly connected to the VIII’s ability to generate macrodynamic attacks as easily as smoke rings. Be it the sudden appearance of electronic fanfares on the otherwise stately "Aging Musician" from the Residents’ Gingerbread Man or the apocalyptic beats of Downloads’ effects-laden "Suni C" from The Eyes of Stanley Pain, Quadral’s Titan undermined the sensation of hosting acoustic transformers. Instead I experienced a direct connection with the music as I’m really mostly familiar with from sonically agreeable live concerts.
 
Unexpected was how all this came off at already 2.5 meters given that the driver array spans about 90 vertical centimetres. Despite such a relative short seating distance the sonic image didn’t fall apart into individual frequency bands. But back to effortlessness. Here the Titan’s treble was responsible too by contributing something very fetching and easily digested not least by avoiding attention for both showy precision and playing it extra smooth. There was long-term ease and silkiness coupled to precision, the latter brilliantly displayed on how  the triangle attack and fine decay of Alarma Man’s "Pitch Grammar" from Love Forever was differentiated against the rest (if you enjoy math rock like the Foals, you should give these Swedes a spin).
 
Recorded run of the mill but ingenious for those who like it a bit noisier at times, on "Here comes Dudley" from Goat by the sadly long since paled Chicago noise rockers Jesus Lizard, colleague Ralph commented that the treble was more saturated and less pastel-colored than with my Thiel CS3.7. On this piece the cymbals and hi-hat routinely are overlaid with scratch noises. Though my Thiels handle this brilliantly, the Titans had such rich texture, such easeful realistic articulation that I was astonished by what this album still held hidden.
 
The Thiels perhaps rendered the treble a tad more pronounced and incisive yet it wasn’t any actual dose which made the difference. Tonally I couldn’t call one or the other speaker more right or pleasing. The particular forté of the Quadral was the complete tracking of endless high-frequency sustains which rendered the upper registers not only more relaxed, organic and silken but also more informative. This listener won with both cleaner and more definitive tone colors and textures. Even so compared to my microdynamically exceptionally agile Thiels, the Quadral played at an equally exalted level on matters of zing. The Titan’s treble thus really hit all of my hot buttons and had me wonder whether I’d ever heard better in this room before. Though otherwise pursuing different directions, the only speakers I could think of which were perhaps a tad crisper were the Myro Whisky and Stereokonzept’s 3. The latter’s treble might have had somewhat greater plasticity but wasn’t as microdynamically accelerated.
 
With ribbon, AMT or magnetostat tweeters I often think—even though it’s a very subtle thing for sure—that their special qualities protrude in particular ways to not perfectly mesh with the other drivers no matter how their celebratory press releases claim otherwise. Here Quadral’s Aurum Montain VIII, which I’d very much enjoyed at the time to affix a fairaudio’s favourite award, had struck me as separating out from the mids with a somewhat fresher treble. The Titan VIII’s uncompromising seamlessness, homogeneity and interplay between tweeter and midrange thus deserve a special mention. 
Listening to this model any concerns about tonal balance and sonic integrity of the mid/treble range evaporated since nothing stuck out to have my attention bump into. What ruled was pure self-assuredness. This model thus transcended any basics to reach for higher. And I really did enjoy how wonderfully the disparate textures of Dan Treacy’s lazy vocals, clangy hi-hat and scurrilous e-guitar were sussed out on the UK combo Television Personalities’ highly commendable 1986 album Painted Word and its title track. No easy job with such music. With the volume pedal to the metal and relative to infrasonic authority I really felt like being inside a somewhat dingy but acoustically benign Berlin club live even though this really is a studio recording.
 
Similar live vibes arose with Worship’s "You are the one" from A Place To Bury Strangers. It was brilliant just how pressurized the shrill sawing of e-guitars flashed through the room, how vital and undiminished their distorted textures were. Though categorically edge and noisy, such fare still shouldn’t frazzle nerves but remain fun and impress in a very particular manner. That’s no task for wall flowers. Needless to say, the Titan VIII applied itself to this with true bravado.
 
A few more words on the bass whose full-pressure assuredness I already covered. All the way down in the first octave very close listening would discern some extra pounds. Since this was applied not in the upper bass or lower midrange and administered just so, the Titan never got into any trouble of unduly warming/thickening up the vocal range. And in case of doubt there’s always the rearward toggle to shave off 2dB. My listening session had that mostly at neutral though.
 
I wouldn’t call infrasonics ultra quick or bone dry but certainly sufficiently fleet to work unhindered through Skinny Puppy’s "Dig It" from Mind The Perpetual Intercourse with its slippery edgy and uneasily stuttering bass-drum runs. Those are elemental to the song lest its rhythmic stutter turns arrhythmia and sonic gruel. My Thiel CS3.7 in this range applied a bit more precision and outline keenness—one of their recognized strengths—but given suitably quick amplification, nobody should miss a thing with Quadral’s Titan VIII.
 
Ditto on soundstaging. The sonic imagery decorrelated wonderfully from the physical enclosures for a freely floating, pleasantly expansive, generous and highly involving panorama not groomed for ultra localization sharpness or plasticity. The Quadral isn’t one of those speakers which use various inter-distances to map the virtual stage down to the centimeter or chisel out each performer as a deep-relief sculpture. Here costlier compact boxes routinely offer more. That said the Titan never allows confusion on stage. During regular (non-mental) listening sorting issues should never present themselves to any but the most strict law & order fetishists.
 
Conclusion.
 
Though I tend to find such statements cheap and over-used— apologies then — I  view Quadral’s Titan VIII as a very special offer amongst top speaker models. At this price I couldn’t think of another which combines this level of music-serving accuracy with such impressive power and pressure. As such this speaker is an open portal to a very direct and emotional connection with the music. The only departure from this in the very positive sense of the word utterly uncomplicated presentation was a minor elevation in the low bass. But even mediocre mastering jobs remained fun and this speaker was simultaneously capable to reach deep on audiophile productions.
This superbox is a master of both loud and soft tones.
Lothar Brandt - Home Electronics Switzerland
Rating
+ fascinatingly balanced, highly cultivated sound
+ extremely deep-reaching, contoured bass
+ transparent, fine-resolution, unstrained brilliance
+ good efficiency factor and good spacialization
− requires at least a middle-sized room and free set-up
Even when not driven by super amplifiers, the new Quadral Aurum Titan storms the Mount Olympus of speakers. It is a bass-rich, very neutral, unspectacularly tuned box for almost any level, any musical style and almost any listening room larger than 25 square metres. If required, highly cultivated sound goes along with midriffmassaging dynamics. Special praise goes to the exemplary blending of a dynamic transducer and ribbon, and extra praise to the excellent workmanship. 
Cultural Evolution
 
To all appearances, the Quadral Titan VIII hardly has anything in common with its mighty predecessors. Its new look matches a new, highly cultivated sound: This superbox is a master of both loud and soft tones.
 
Quadral Titan – a living legend. But not a fossil. Because instead of a hopeless, petrified existence in technology museums and dusty bachelor pads, this quintessentially masculine speaker has undergone a real evolution. Now, in its eighth generation, it can occupy the regal throne on the super-speaker Mount Olympus. This is a contrast to its brutish namesakes born of the earth goddess in Greek mythology, whom the king of the gods Zeus wiped from the face of the earth.
 
But as befits true heroes of evolution, the Titan has also gone through several stages of internal and external development. With ancestors dating to 1981, and a true leader with a 30-inch bass speaker, a transmission line, and a colossal, broad-walled appearance, today’s great-greatgreat-great-great-great grandchild has more in common with an Arabian stallion than with a Germanic warhorse. 
 
At 31 cm wide and barely 1.40 m tall, the young Titan is comparatively well proportioned. However, the its approximately 60 cm depth and considerable 88 kg weight — not to mention its price of 14,300 francs per pair — give it away as the titan flagship of the Aurum series.
 
True ribbon
 
Launched in Germany with pricey materials. After a long dry spell, the old CEO Edmond Semmelhaack has taken charge again and put Quadral back on the road to success. Thus his developer Sascha Reckert had the leeway to create something so new that the eighth generation has barely anything to do with the seventh, other than the name.
 
It starts with the tweeter. While its predecessors still had magnetostatics for reproducing the upper octaves, the new Titan uses a true ribbon. This type of transducer is as rare as it is expensive. In magnetostatics, a conducting path meanders along a non-conductive foil that is clamped tightly in a magnetic field. However, a true ribbon is a fluted piece of metal on which the music (AC) voltage is applied and is thus completely traversed by the signal current. In time with the music, it moves forward and back in the directed magnetic field, thus creating sound. To achieve reasonably good efficiency, however, the tweeter requires very strong magnets — and here, to his chagrin, Semmelhaack has to splurge on the rare earth neodymium, whose price has recently spiralled upward as steeply as the Greek economy has swirled downward.
 
For the midrange speaker — which is responsible for almost the entire voice range of 200 to 3000 hertz — and for the 25-inch basses in their own pressure-chamber bass reflex housing, Quadral puts its money on the traditional cone shape. It minimizes distortion using an alloy of aluminium, titanium and magnesium — from whence the artfully coined term Altima. The frequency separating filter is a true work of art — in the literal sense of the word: You can even see this richly equipped trailblazer right through a transparent piece in the rear wall, but only the imposing portion for the mid and high ranges, because the bass filter plunges deep inside.
 
One exciting feature is the room adjustment what Quadral allows separately for all channels: Toggle switches let you increase or decrease by two decibels. In especially dry, smaller or heavily insulated rooms, switching can provide either more or less bass volume, pressure, transparency or brilliance.
 
In Home Electronics’ listening room, everything could be left in the middle position. The exercise with spikes or sub-feet could be dispensed with, because the mounted base plate belongs with the bass reflex guide. This is the best place for the Titan to sit, with the slightly rearward leaning baffle angled a bit toward the listener. And it should stand freely in the room, if possible. Pushed too close against the back wall or in the corner, this big box can provide too much of a good thing in the bass range.
 
Truly deep bass
 
And the Titan did well. Not just in the bass range.  But while we’re plumbing the depths: Although this superbox doesn’t look so titanic anymore, it goes especially low. Our colleagues from German sister magazines have determined the lower limit frequency — where the level drops six decibels from the average — to an abysmal 22 hertz. This is just barely above the lowest tones reached by acoustic instruments. The lowest octave — from subcontra C to contra C — extends from approximately 16.4 to about 32.8 And only large organs, grand pianos and very few wind instruments can reach this far. By comparison: With its thickest string, a jazz bass produces 44.1 hertz. Sound techs trim radio-friendly pop music at no lower than 50 hertz, and not without first raising to 60 hertz, which should mimic real bass. 
 
As always: A large drum, like the one thundering so massively in the “Dies irae” movement of the Verdi Requiem, literally delivers a blow to the gut. Even in recordings, it is always impressive when this instrument is tuned to about 32 hertz and struck hard. Playing the still standard 1968 Georg Solti recording (also see p. 16), the Titan delivered the desired impact.
 
AbsoluTely Undistorted
 
And it did so without distortion during the massive choral entrances. Above all, the Titan was exemplary in its clarity throughout the frequency range. Even our colleagues in the laboratory confirmed that, all the way up to party volumes, they couldn’t make out a hint of distortion even in the ribbon. The author — whose tastes run from classical music to progressive rock — could easily cut loose with Dream Theater’s “Train of Thought” CD at a volume that would cause neighbours to file a complaint for disturbing the peace.
 
Amidst the pure pleasure of John Petrucci’s insanely agile guitar runs and Mike Portnoy’s incredible drum escapades, my brain never told me to turn it down. Assuming good health and a good mood, our ears and the hearing centre connected to them are ultimately the most reliAudio [ High End Special - Test 1 ] Fine separation: the imposingly equipped mid to high portion of the frequency separating filter can be seen at work behind the plexiglass. the toggle switches underneath adjust the level. able instrumentsfor, delicately embedded with a guitar, the quality of a hi-fi system. When you’d rather not hear your favourite music “so loud”, it’s usually a dead give-away that the equipment is no good.
 
There’s no trace of this with the Quadral — even though at first the recently introduced “Aurum” electronics took control. Edmond Semmelhaack has decided to introduce his own CD player and amplifier under the august trademark. At the time of testing, the A5 integrated amplifier (3,550 francs) and the C5 CD layer (2,780 francs) were available. Both components proved themselves more than worthy of the Aurum banner: The CD player delivered highly sensitive, delicate voice reproduction and powerful but never intrusive brilliance. The integrated amplifier provided magnificent but casual, very responsively rendered sound of impressive depth and colour.
 
For Soft volumes, Too
 
Thus, the jury didn’t hesitate to submit the proprietary electronics to a portion of the test that may seem somewhat strange for speakers so large. Nonetheless, it says a lot about tuning and overall quality. That was listening at medium and even soft levels. But for one thing, sensitive singer-songwriters and finely chiselled chamber music is not intended to be heard at brutish volumes. For another, even owners of detached houses are careful not to wake the wife and kids at night.
 
With the Titan, it was even a pleasure to listen to soft music, like the legendary “Ester” by FIM, now remastered and reissued with outstanding sound quality (see p. 44). Esther Ofarim’s belllike voice, delicately embedden with a guitar or the Munich Chamber Orchestra, enchanted with all their nuances, all their intimacy, zeal and passion. Probably all the world’s hi-fi testers have squeezed most of the enjoyment out of recordings that are now 40 years old, but with the Titan, the new ultra-HD disk makes them worth listening to again.
 
Dug up from the archives, “Sleeper” was definitely no snoozer. This highly refined 1979 “European” chamber quartet by jazz great Keith Jarrett, as well as other LPs and SACDs, showed the enormously airy, effortless, high-precision joy of this premium box from Hanover. Most inspiring was the seamless transition from midrange speaker to ribbon. Singers would describe it as perfect “register balance”. Neither piano nor saxophone runs, high hat rides nor hard cymbal crashes fell apart acoustically. Definitely not a given with the combination of dynamic and ribbon conversion. But head developer Reckert has achieved excellence. Kudos!
 
To top things off, when it came to amplifiers, it was time to bring out the heavy artillery. With an efficiency factor of about 86 decibels per watt at a one-metre distance, the Titan is considerably less power hungry than its ancestor (78 dB), but the low-watt transistor amps and singleended triode tubes quickly reached their limits. With a possible undistorted maximum level of 115.5 dB, one can even go for powerful output stages. Even with mono-blocks from Classé, the premium German box dashed like a harnessed Arabian stallion. Though not available in the HE listening room, the resounding, refined power 
of the gigantic T+A M10 sounds good to the author’s ears. These tube-transistor hybrids can 
form dream combination with the Titan.
 
Verdict
 
Even when not driven by super amplifiers, the new Quadral Aurum Titan storms the Mount Olympus of speakers. It is a bass-rich, very neutral, unspectacularly tuned box for almost any level, any musical style and almost any listening room larger than 25 square metres. If required, highly cultivated sound goes along with midriffmassaging dynamics. Special praise goes to the exemplary blending of a dynamic transducer and ribbon, and extra praise to the excellent workmanship. 
...........Lothar Brandt
.....boasts an unusually neutral tonal balance, notably clean treble and tuneful bass.
Hi-Fi News

In many respects the Orkan VIII delivers a performance concomitant with its classy appearance. It is tonally neutral, has tuneful, wellcontrolled bass and thanks to its leaf tweeter an unusually clean and clear treble. It really is a cut above that delivered by the average dome tweeter, metal dome or otherwise.

The Aurum range arrives packed with bespoke technology
This floorstander is no larger or more extravagantly equipped than many in this area of the market, but it is notably more substantial than the norm, at 31kg, and better finished too. Moreover, for a premium, there are numerous alternative finishes.
   
Twin 170mm aluminium/ titanium/magnesium coned bass units work in parallel up to a specified 330Hz crossover and are reflex loaded by a single large rearfiring port. The distinctive slats we saw in the Titan VII are echoed in an array of vertical rubber cords that adorn the cut-out through which the recessed bass units radiate – in fact these appear to be part of the reflex/pressure chamber bass loading principle.
   
Above these on the front baffle a third 170mm AlTiMg coned driver operates from 330Hz to 2.7kHz, where it crosses over to a ‘ribbon’ tweeter – actually an isodynamic type with a flat voice coil etched on to its plastic diaphragm and a quartet of neodymium bar magnets.
   
At the back of the cabinet two pairs of input terminals access the split crossover, the lower terminals addressing the twin bass drivers and the upper terminals the midrange unit and tweeter. Short linking wires are provided to combine these for single-wire connection.
   
Like the Titan, the Orkan VIII flies in the face of normal practice by not providing floor spikes, or inserts into which spikes could be screwed.
 
MAKING DISTINCTIONS
 
In many respects the Orkan VIII delivers a performance concomitant with its classy appearance. It is tonally neutral, has tuneful, wellcontrolled bass and thanks to its leaf tweeter an unusually clean and clear treble. It really is a cut above that delivered by the average dome tweeter, metal dome or otherwise.
   
The Orkan VIII was notably good, for instance, at conveying and distinguishing the many different percussion instruments used in Henze’s Prison Song, ripped from Percussion XX [Arts 47558-6]. ......
   
Chesky’s natural, spacious recording of Christy Baron’s stylish take on ‘Got To Get You Into My Life’ highlighted the Orkan VIII’s tuneful bass, which seems to have been aligned with more concern for clean transient performance than maximum extension. This was confirmed by the challenging ‘Annie’s Yellow Bag’ from Gwyneth Herbert’s All The Ghosts [naimcd135], whose opening combination of bass and drums was well handled...... 
 
VERDICT
 
Impressively built and finished for the price, the Orkan VIII also boasts an unusually neutral tonal balance, notably clean treble and tuneful bass. 
Well-designed Tweeter, detailed middle, in-depth high-speed bus.
Salon Audio Video - Russian HiFi magazine
Bookshelf Quаdrаl Altan VIII includes the world's most famous series of Aurum, now in its eighth generation. A large part of the front panel is the latest ribbon emitter with a truly amazing performance. In spite of the upper limit of 65 kHz, the maximum efficiency is ensured by the ribbon. In effect such an light weighted diaphragm is able to reproduce the finest micro dynamic touches and every subtle nuance in recordings. It provides big bass support with the 170-mm driver with the cone made of the proprietary alloy, Altima (a combination of aluminium, magnesium and titanium). Thanks to record low- weight mobile system, there is not a minimum response time and, accordingly, shows outstanding speed indicators.
 
The monitors show a few very valuable qualities, among which are sophisticated speakers and a powerful bass, which stand out particularly because of the same high mobility. Despite the slight emphasis on the bottom of the range, the feel of a strong dark tone balance here does not arise. Is not affected in this way, and the clarity of the vocal mid-range does not limit speech intelligibility and gives excellent resolution. The upper range needs to be described separately. There is no limit to the level of performance as is shown by the attention to small details, and because of that the audio environment is unrivalled.
 
The virtual space enhances the higher harmonies.
 
The stage is sufficient in terms of width and is well visible in the setting, and the positions of the main sources are not crowded.
the M10 Base fulfils clearly discerning.

Summary:
The first duet between Figaro and Susanne our ears hear especially when M10 Base center speaker out very accurately, since it must represent the high-class voices appropriate. And here it should be noted that both the voice of d'Arcangelo as well as the sounds of Netrebko in great detail and with coherent structures. For a centre, which costs about 500 EUR, it is surprising how sensitive also, for example, the decay of the voice is exposed. You can hear also even with considerable level without the resulting sound is too shrill. Balanced, clear spatial - the M10 Base fulfils clearly discerning. 

Extended review:
Quadral pride shines is the quality Platinum M-Series, with the-art equipment, simple, sophisticated look and for a fair price. As a complement to our test set is recommended already in individual tests excellent compact active subwoofer QUBE 8 for slim 399 EUR. Just like the Platinum M-transducer it is available in glossy white or glossy black. 3094 EUR will cost the whole 5.1 set including active subwoofer.
 
The M30 is a three-way floorstanding speaker for 699 EUR per piece - it is the cheapest and smallest of the Platinum M-standing speaker. In rank the M40 and the M50. The M30 uses the bass reflex principle, the two larger tower speaker in this range combines pressure chamber and bass reflex. With a rated capacity of 140 watts and a power handling of 210 watts good values ​​are achieved even in the smallest floorstanding speaker. The transmission range is from 30 Hz to 50 kHz - the high-tech tweeter is thanks. With this orientation, all Platinum take M-speaker high-resolution audio files with extended high end for the perfect harmonic playback into consistently Targets. Whether FLAC-/DSD-/WAV-HiRes-Datei or Blu-ray Audio: With the Platinum M-Series one is prepared to current quality sources.
 
Back to M30. Efficiency (1W/1m) is 89 dB, which is decent but not spectacular. It is designed as all Platinum M boxes for impedances 4-8 ohms. The brand new RiCom V tweeter is designed as a funnel-ring radiator tweeter and, through optimised radiation precise spatial high frequencies. A 135 mm midrange and a 170 mm woofer, jeweilis with a lightweight and durable aluminium cone, put the rest of the assembly represents the M30 is 95.5 mm high, 19.5 mm wide and 29.75 mm deep. The M30 weighs 17.7 kg and has, like the other Platinum M-acoustic transducer, a Real Cable internal wiring. 
 
The M10 Base Centre is located at 499 EUR and works according to the closed 3-way principle. It can be loaded with a maximum of 180 watts, the power handling capability of 120 watts. The efficiency decreases due to the smaller, closed housing compared to the M30 to 86 dB under the same measurement conditions. Impedance is also 4 - 8 ohms, the transmission range is from 35 Hz to 50 kHz - because even in the centre works particularly talented new RiCom V tweeter. 135 mm midrange and 135 mm woofer with aluminium cone provide adequate means and low frequency reproduction. The M10 Base measures 16 cm in height, 55 cm in width and 24.95 inches in depth. The weight: 9,2 kg. 
 
For the surround area is the M25 (unit price 449 EUR), the larger of the two Platinum M bookshelf speakers, responsible. This is a 2-way bass reflex speaker with 90 watts nominal and 130 watts power handling. The transmission range is from 40 Hz to 50 kHz. As with M10 Base, the sensitivity is given as 86 dB. In addition to RiCom V tweeter is a 170 mm woofer on board. The bookshelf speaker weighs 7.7 kg and is 360 mm high, 195 mm wide and 299.5 mm deep. 
 
To complete the set, we still choose the QUBE 8 powered subwoofer for 399 EUR, which operates on the down-fire principle. 220 mm The chassis is mounted on the bottom. 100 watts nominal power and 130 watts of music power range for small to medium-sized rooms from a performance point. Soft clipping and peak limiters provide effective protection against overload. The acquisition frequency is adjustable from 50 to 200 Hz, the frequency response ranges from 30 to 200 Hz The QUBE 8 active is 37.5 cm high, 29 cm wide and 35 cm deep - almost cubical. The standby power consumption is low at 0.5 watts.
 
The processing of the bass experts like, as well as in the Platinum M-boxes, with accurate high-gloss finish and rounded corners. The aluminium plate with status LED and Quadral lettering is almost flush into the case. On the back there is a fixed and precisely screwed connection box made of metal. In addition to controls for crossover frequency and volume to find an activatable automatic circuit and a phase switch which can be set between 0 and 180 degrees. The switches are all processed stable. There you will find high and low level inputs and a power switch on the back (two low-level RCA inputs). Four silver-colored solid feet are responsible for the correct distance of the subwoofer to the floor, the exact fit in the square design to the subwoofer. The radiating down chassis is fitted clean, the rear is still a specially designed bass reflex port. The interior appears cleaned up, the module is quality for the price range in order.
 
Alternatively, you should be more bass is desired, also the QUBE 10  (599 EUR) or even the QUBE 12  insert (999 EUR) as an active subwoofer. 
 
Sonically, we have analysed how the Hanoverian Ensemble at our first-class Yamaha RX-A3030 suggests. The first BD we have Paul Kalkbrenner selected "2010" and here the "Old Karmuffel" DTS-HD Master Audio. Even right at the start is the set the applause of the audience very well again. The electronic effects of alternating effect come out excellent. Then it's also going on in the bass range right. We leave the M30 undermined "large", thus the 3-way speakers are working in full range. Centre and Rears we have separated at 80 Hz. As we know already, the QUBE 8 provides an excellent idea from - but the bass, which are reproduced from the M30, inspire as well: By printing, precision and dimensionality. Level detection are all Platinum M component without exception - even that we know of so Quadral. What but for the price range is excellent: the sovereignty, already almost playful composure with which manages the M30 just great level. We call us back to Gedächnis that it is standing speakers at the M30 to the smallest of the three Platinum M. The Platinum M50 we have also been put under the microscope - of course, the largest floorstanding series goes even deeper down in the bass range and is again stable levels, but even the M30 does her job not only good, but excellent. The centre fits perfectly into the front soundscape one, as we can observe also the second track "Dockyard". The hard bass prepares the Platinum set no problems. Various events occurring parallel Bass act exactly matched and always bring accurate contours. 
 
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's "Marriage of Figaro" is one of the most famous operas in the world, and sounds in DTS-HD High Resolution Audio brilliant. The performance with Anna Netrebko as Susanna and Ildebrando d'Arcangelo as Figaro gives her a lot, also the famous opera singers are instrumental support of the Vienna Philharmonic. Even the opening is an acoustic delight. The highly talented RiCom V tweeter is at his best form here - you can hear it very well to the strings that play harmoniously and simultaneously releases, a rare especially in this price class combination. Classical music fans might consider if the surround setting is to act more uniformly, again to use the M30 for the rear. The higher price per box of 350 EUR is our opinion moderate. But he who has no place behind and / or rather hears in the room until about 30 square meters, also runs on the M25 bookshelf speakers in the back very well. Interestingly, the QUBE 8 appears active subwoofer is not undersized, but fits perfectly into the overall musical events. Regarding the group delays can be stated that there is no component lags behind, a pulse-abiding, self-contained sound is the result.
 
The first duet between Figaro and Susanne our ears hear especially when M10 Base center speaker out very accurately, since it must represent the high-class voices appropriate. And here it should be noted that both the voice of d'Arcangelo as well as the sounds of Netrebko in great detail and with coherent structures. For a centre, which costs about 500 EUR, it is surprising how sensitive also, for example, the decay of the voice is exposed. You can hear also even with considerable level without the resulting sound is too shrill. Balanced, clear spatial - the M10 Base fulfils clearly discerning. 
 
What can the M30 in stereo mode? The answer can be found in "A Te" by Andrea Bocelli. Great vocal reproduction with clear contours, very exact solo of the famous saxophonist Kenny G., the clean sounds are reproduced with an extensive, but never exaggerated spatial effect. The voice Andreas has a precisely defined profile - this is one of the special features of Platinum M30: Here enormous precision is associated with a very pleasant sound that simply meets gross-as well as fine dynamic bull's-eye. Also the bass qualities of classic column speaker are outstanding. 
 
The quality of the film tracks we have in "Mission Impossible - The Phantom Protocol" checked (Dolby TrueHD, BD) and we start in the sequence, when the Kremlin is to see in sunlight. The typical Russian to sounding music is playing space-filling and lively. In general, the incorporation of the Music Score under all conditions is always successful. Smaller effects steps in the big Kremlin halls, placing the card on the table or the operation of the ID card scanner demonstrate a knack for fine dynamic finesse. If then but large in dynamics come, act all components in transients - once the ensemble is in the truest sense of the word "in the music". Votes are the fairly large center convincingly again, and also with good horizontal and vertical viewing angle for maximum precision, even when not focused directly sitting in front of the center. So you can easily enjoy with several films. 
 
Some chapters followed Ethan Hunt his opponent relentlessly - even the raging sandstorm in Dubai just can not stop him. The low-frequency rumble and swirling around the audience grains of sand come out authentic. The rather compact M25 rear create an amazingly accurate tiered backdrop with very good spatial and surprise us as it were, with full "Film suitability". The QUBE 8 provides powerful and amazingly reaching deep down substructure, the M30 arrange themselves without sonic hole right after. Small effects such as the beeping of finding transmitter and the subsequent changes of dynamics, as the agent on the hood of the BMW X3 lands of the structure are given excellent in. At high frequencies, the system acts in great detail, several parallel event effects are properly recognized and rendered differentiated. 
 
Let us turn to the competitors. 
 
Among these was here in 2011, and thus tested in this form somewhat older Canton Chrono 5.1 set  for good 2650 EUR, so slightly cheaper than our test set. The Canton-boxes are also very good, although somewhat simpler processed. Sonically us the set time has fallen very good. The higher price justifies the Platinum M ensemble with even more detail, better soundstage in the treble and slightly stronger bass. Coarse Dynamically also the Canton-set is excellent. 
 
Second, the competitive system for under 2600 EUR censor Dali 5.1 speaker, with four floor standing speakers for the front and rear plus center and active Sub can be used with very homogeneous sound. The four tower speaker and the powerful active subwoofers just over 30 square meters for applications also in the listening room. Fine dynamics and depth as well as vocal reproduction succeed the more expensive Quadral "team" with more cultured touches. 
 
And also from their own home there with the powerful Ascent ensemble for under 2300 EUR in 5.0 configuration competition. Level detection and coarse dynamic convinced the Ascent set that 8 comes to 2,700 EUR with subwoofer QUBE and thus almost 400 EUR cheaper than the tested here Platinum set. Not too much - so good that Ascent set is also fine dynamics and also regarding the level of joy to us the Platinum ensemble like even better. 
 
Conclusion
 
Overall, a first-class speaker system that remains absolutely with 3,000 EUR in the affordable frame - Quadral shows many competitors once again how it goes. What is particularly fascinating: weaknesses are entirely absent, apart from the optics, which many may seem a little too conservative, from. But taste is subjective, so this is no real disadvantage. With clean lines to detail and excellent sound when playing back music and movie sound it reaches a level that is likely to even the most discriminating listeners loved it. 
Based on what we have heard is probably the very best you can buy right now,
Translation of Greek 10x speaker comparison test (please excuse quality of the translation)

Quadral Ascent 90 awarded "best price-performace ratio" of 10 speaker comparison test.Based on what we have heard is probably the very best you can buy right now, if you move as close as possible to the lower limit of the price range.

.. The Ascent 90 is a lively, pleasant speaker, which will be driven relatively easily and has good potential for high levels and good behavior in the spectrum that will delight those who want to compose a fast system with good performance potential of rhythmic parts and generally, relaxed sound.

If your room is medium or large, you can put a large speaker correctly, then you should turn to test models with larger units of low frequencies. Not only because you will be able to get well because the smaller speakers test seemed to have some clear boundaries in terms of their ability to cover a large area with high levels.

This 10 speaker group is, in principle, the speaker with the best price-performance ratio of the test: This is the Quadral Ascent 90, a speaker with good low level very good potential and dynamic sound that will never tire. Based on what we have heard is probably the very best you can buy right now, if you insist to move as close as possible to the lower limit of the price range.

Speakers involved in comparison test:
Quadral Ascent 90
PMC GB-1
Qud 23L Classic
Audio Physics Clasic 20
Definitive Rechnology BP7004
Polk Audio LSi15
JBL Studio 590
Bluetone 25D HM
Leema Acousticx Xone
System Audio Aura 30

Listening Test.


The Ascent 90 is an impressive speaker in a sense which is able to create a great height and good wide image with good traffic and enough depth that allows the listener to follow with ease, and the structure and composition of music, too, is able to operate at fairly high levels of compression with no problems, and generally gives the impression that it has significant potential margins.

In the bass range and got good volume control, with small voltages that might make the speaker less spectacular but also more clear, with individual instruments can be heard in the area at the right scale size and good detail. The rhythmic parts rendered with sense of speed, maybe a little cautious but win easily as the impressions are clear and without unnecessary excesses.

The midrange is rendered with good detail and contributes to creating the impression that the listener is at some distance from the hypothetical stage, having an overall feel for the musical event. The speaker seems that there will never tire, even at fairly high levels and reproduction works with vocal moves very good, with good articulation, quote details and realistic description of each scene, whether it contains one or more soloists or choir .

The high frequencies create the impression of a speaker is fast, clear and provide enough detail to the listener, seemed to us, however, very little faster in depreciation and, despite the fact that the potential describing the harmonic content of the program will not miss the listener,.......

Finally ...

... The Ascent 90 is a lively, pleasant speaker, which will be driven relatively easily and has good potential for high levels and good behavior in the spectrum that will delight those who want to compose a fast system with good performance potential of rhythmic parts and generally, relaxed sound.

Measurments

The diagram shows a fairly homogeneous behavior in the range and relatively small deviations. According to the-3dB points the response is 48Hz to 22kHz approximately characterized by a mild strengthening approximately 70Hz which reaches 2.2dB. H standard in the high frequencies smoothly. The differences between the response on axis and off-axis response medium is small, more than 2kHz, and indicate that the hearing of the ideal off will not have significant problems. 

As load Ascent 90 moves around the average of the class and not troubled with such an amplifier driving capabilities. The minimum impedance measure reaches 4.6O and its variation is the smaller of the test, while the variance of phase at low frequencies moves also low (63 degrees total, with the character to be mainly capacitive.... The speaker is quite fast by the standards of this test. 

The step response appears fairly smooth and it seems to move from one unit to another is true but without any problems. Additionally, the speaker Quadral is one of the faster rise time of the side units (having the earliest woofer and the second fastest tweeter) and it is the smallest time difference between the two loudspeakers (0.051mS).

Radiation speaker the area is smooth and without problems. The polar diagram narrows progressively in relation to the frequency and only 16kHz. It is particularly interesting that the Ascent 90 is one of the two speakers of the test with directivity factor which increases monotonously according to the frequency, The average directional index moved very close to the average of the test (5.9dB) and, based on its angle at 6dB attenuation at 16kHz, the speaker does not need to turn to the listener, something confirmed by the small difference between the response on axis and the average on and off-axis (listening window).

The cabin of Ascent 90 appears to be, from a mechanical standpoint, the most peaceful of this test.

The Wotan passes these tests with distinction and wins stars.
German magazine "Fidelity" - a high end magazine and only reviews high-end products.

With a broad selection of music under my arm and a pair of hot amplifiers close-by, I can feel the sound from the Wotan VIII. As it is controlled by an excellent valve amplifier, the Quadral projects a deep and wide platform that is surprisingly evenly illuminated but only slightly curved yet it is really widely spread. Large orchestras remain cleanly focused and precisely defined in big rooms with excellent reproduction in Fortissimo as well as effecting the correctheight, when the crescendo of the orchestra instruments feels as if it has filled the room and the tonal range virtually reaches the ceiling. It can only come perceptibly closer if, for example, a massive amount of percussion is used or if there is no limit to the volume control for rousing rock and funk titles. As before you do not have to worry about the dynamics when sudden constraints are applied, as they can only affect the speaker indirectly. ......The Wotan VIII generates its deep and rapid bass .....

At long last I can throw out a couple of my deep-seated prejudices. Suddenly, QUAD from QUADRAL is no longer so far away...
 
Sometimes covering up is a good thing. For example, I think that noise permeable material is great: When it is stretched over a suitable frame it can cover several speakers if they start to look like a chassis collection. This type of material can also be used to cover up a wall and hide the speakers, which in turn will permit “objective listening” and eliminate many audiophile preconceptions. However, until I install such an acoustically permeable wall in my music room (or in the office), I will continue to use a simple alternative for my late night listening, so that I can continue to fully concentrate on my music and the sound: I’ll just turn out the light!
 
This gives me a material wall as well as a light-switch by my side: My initial contact with the Quadral Aurum Wotan VIII was in daylight and this was more or less a functional check to ascertain that everything was technically correct. I found everything to be in order as well as a pair of astounding qualities that, quite frankly, I would never have expected from Quadral.
 
Quadral? This is what I found...
 
Tests and dazzlement

In my view Quadral was the absolutely dominant scene player at the height of the HiFi scene in Germany as from the end of the seventies and up to the middle of the eighties. Quadral, they were the “big player”, the powerhouse, the test winners for the subscribers.All of which didn’t seem to matter to me at the time. I gave my heart to HiFi early on, in fact I changed over lock, stock and barrel to the high-fidelity coming out of Great Britain, where Linnatic were on the offensive and Naimie were one and the same. Quadral was not on my personal HiFi radar at the time as it did not have “Made in Great Britain” on it. Yes, I was completely dazzled back then. I was young and broke, with many opinions and even more prejudices!
 
Flagship demos
 
Today I am older and wiser and I discarded many of my old prejudices a long time ago, yet I still turn the light out when listening to music. For a considerable time now I have been listening to a system that sounds really good, even though it is not from GB.
 
However, my direct experience with Quadral can be easily explained. It has been restricted to a pair of private “flagship demonstrations” with classic, head-high flagship systems provided by the company. These mainly took place in acoustically critical surroundings and were dominated by blatantly overstrained amplifiers (many gaudy Japanese test winners) and DJs (who were fans of many of the test winners). I kept these demos in mind not as audiophile recommendations, but more as 
specific references as in practise the printeddata sheets supplied with the amplifiers no longer listed full coverage of the leading qualities of the reproduced sound. Reading and understanding them were often two completely different things!
 
What is different here?
 
This is precisely the reason why I am more impressed and ready to sit on the sofa at any time and listen to these slender white speakers. Yes, I am now using Quadral. It’s not just the Quadral sound, more about how I came to get to know the brand. In fact the superbly clear midranges, on which everything else is based and can develop cleanly, somehow sound slightly British to me! Actually, I am of the opinion, at least for the moment and as I am constantly reminded by various monitors, that I value the smooth poignancy, even though no conceivable bass areas are produced. Furthermore, it is different here. The bass is good, even very good indeed: Crisp and deep at the same time, it harmonises perfectly with the mid-ranges. Everything is bundled together from high up right up to the top: The very pronounced and clear yet not over-fancy high ranges are adequately integrated into the overall acoustic image. This Quadral system with the long name is normally called the Wotan VIII – or by its even shorter name: W8, which sounds as if it has come out of a mould. If there was a sound permeable wall between me and the W8 and I had to guess where it came from, I would probably say Great Britain.
 
Performance must never be flawed
 
With a broad selection of music under my arm and a pair of hot amplifiers close-by, I can feel the sound from the Wotan VIII. As it is controlled by an excellent valve amplifier, the Quadral projects a deep and wide platform that is surprisingly evenly illuminated but only slightly curved yet it is really widely spread. Large orchestras remain cleanly focused and precisely defined in big rooms with excellent reproduction in Fortissimo as well as effecting the correctheight, when the crescendo of the orchestra instruments feels as if it has filled the room and the tonal range virtually reaches the ceiling. It can only come perceptibly closer if, for example, a massive amount of percussion is used or if there is no limit to the volume control for rousing rock and funk titles. As before you do not have to worry about the dynamics when sudden constraints are applied, as they can only affect the speaker indirectly. 
 
The Wotan VIII generates its deep and rapid bass from the volume, which cannot be described as excessive, and this can normally only be realised at cost to the overall efficiency W8 cannot be called an efficiency marvel, as it is really a relatively small upright speaker (not even one metre high), but with additional qualities.
 
If used with a Synthesis A100T  then the dynamics are quite different. Even though the strong Italian does not quite match the subtle sophistication of the French amplifier, both of them fly past the post. After a double dose of rock’n’roll training I released the Synthesis from its training obligation: with ZZ Top and “Cheap Sunglasses” and the aforementioned clockwise rotation. I find the Wotan VIII’s clean reproduction of the different tone characteristics from the two valve amplifiers eminently respectable.
 
Multi-room for beginners
 
In the meantime the Wotan has found itself a temporary job as a “multi-room” component: When nobody else except me is in the house and I have a little to do here and there I always open the door between the music room and the corridor and turn the amp up. The best test is to flood the whole house with music and this is based on solid experience: The system will then reveal its true self. In a worst case scenario the acoustic sound breaks up immediately in front of the door to the music room (or separates, depending on the conditions) and your pure musical enjoyment is soured with every further step you take away from there.
A perfect intermediary for both worlds is the Dartzeel CTH-8550, my favourite power amplifier. It combines the harmonic closeness of a good valve (even if it is not used) with the sovereign power of a really huge transistor amp (over 300 Watts on 4 ohms if required). The worry-free Quadral manages this upwards quality jump with ease and presents itself as being “larger” than it actually is, whilst sounding even more liberated than beforehand.
 
In the meantime the Wotan has found itself a temporary job as a “multi-room” component: When nobody else except me is in the house and I have a little to do here and there I always open the door between the music room and the corridor and turn the amp up. The best test is to flood the whole house with music and this is based on solid experience: The system will then reveal its true self. In a worst case scenario the acoustic sound breaks up immediately in front of the door to the music room (or separates, depending on the conditions) and your pure musical enjoyment is soured with every further step you take away from there.
 
The Wotan passes these tests with distinction and wins stars. The Road To Ensenada by Lyle Lovett (Edel/Curb 78232), for example, is left to run right through and this refreshes me with a varied mixture of schmaltzy country & western and sharp up-tempo swing with bigband sound. Lovett’s guitar solo in “Private conversation” sounds as if the maverick Texan was playing live and practicing for a gig. Famous! The astounding all-round performance of the Wotan makes you want more. Back in the music room I can listen to it “properly” once again: on the sofa, sat in the stereo field. And with the light off please!
 
Luxuries
 
The Flat Earth by Thomas Dolby (Parlophone /EMI CDP 7460282) has just come my way, literally: The 1984 disc was lost during a move and it has now tumbled out of a side pocket and returned to my high-fidelity life. What a funky production this really is! Dolby plays the crazy buttonpressing professor who controls his melodic keyboard park. The Wotan understands this and is able to produce the original “digitally interwoven” tone of the eighties as well as the continually surprising complexity of this tricky, funny work absolutely clearly and distinctly, both loudly as well as quietly. I am deeply impressed once again.
 
Is there nothing for me to complain about? Well the Wotan 8 cannot be described as Prince Charming, It is unflattering, honest. The combination of sound from several cool sources might also be one “brilliant” idea too many. The ribbon tweeter, which has not really been mentioned up to now, as it has been superbly integrated, might be a little too flippant if extreme peaking occurs.  Presumably it is only the amp that is at the limit or else your ears are being overloaded. Spikes, which are not needed with these excellent speakers, will have to be ordered separately as they are not included in the original package. But these are just mere gimmicks. The Quadral Aurum Wotan VIII is an unexpected and well-priced highlight – very well made in Germany
Bravo
HiFi Lautsprecher, 2013 test yearbook (Germany):
 
The bottom line: 
“A sophisticated, well thought-out design with exceptional technical solutions — a truly flawless jack-of-all-trades. It’s very rare to see that, let alone hear it. And when you see the price the shop lets such a great item go for, there’s only one thing to say: Bravo!”
The Aurum paints the licks with neon colours and makes it all radiantly exciting. The spatiality is outstanding — the system reproduces the depth and width very authentically..... it’s a very good hi-fi combo
Germany Magazine: HiFi Test
HiFi Test grading - Reference class grade 1

With its integrated amplifier and CD player team, Quadral doesn’t present an exaggerated high end system, but a real value, even in regard to sound: Aurum A5 and C5 play with directness, strength and effervescence — it’s a very good hi-fi combo

Workmanship Quadral has been making and marketing speakers for more than 30yrs. One thinks of the immortal Quadral Titan, still being updated today. And now their own line of electronics.
 
The prestigious “Aurum” label adorns Quadral’s top Air models, which is where the new electronics division gets its name, adding the words “Made in Germany”. If you’re going to do something, do it right. They wanted to do it right, so they brought in a renowned German electronics aficionado with years of experience developing and producing audio electronics. The result: two integrated amps and two CD players. The object of our desire: the large A5 integrated amplifier with C5 CD player.
 
Aurum A5 and CS 
 
At NZ$9,245 for the pair, this hifi combo doesn’t cost chump change — it is an investment in long-term satisfaction. The devices have a noble look and shows a striking face: a discreet façade with one large and two small knobs, over that a subtle, bare display, and at the top a silver moulding. Wooden side panels are a given with Quadral, and they are now available in three colours. On our test equipment, they had elegant black lacquer. A look at the back is telling: Nine source devices can be connected to the A5 — plenty even for large systems. One input even has XLR connections that match the symmetrical C5 player. The A5 still weighs a good 12 kilos, and the reason comes to light when you open it: Two serious toroidal core transformers supply the device with power. One left, one right — dual mono is the order of the day.
 
Technology 
 
The first look inside the A5 reveals squeaky clean construction. The power amplifiers are built finely and discreetly — a mix of tiny, conventional SMD components form the amplifier and the driver circuit. The most massive thing on the power amplifiers are the capacitors, which sit right on site. You’ll look in vain for the usual “fat electrolytic capacitors”. For this purpose, the central power supply board bridge rectifiers made of SMD diodes. Obviously, here each circuit component is separately supplied. Further along in the electrical system, the device strays from the path of discreet design. 
 
The pre-amplifier portion is served by proper operational amplifiers. A four-legged SMD handles the level setting. There’s no snap, crackle, pop when adjusting the volume. The adjusting knob sits flush in the hand, and could easily be confused with a potentiometer — as it should. A battery relay ensures gentle clicking in the device. It switches between the various inputs, and is commanded by a micro-controller, as are the display and the level control. All components that could potentially create distortion sit as far as possible from the sensitive circuit components — there’s no doubt the design was thought through and developed by a professional.
 
Power
 
The solid workmanship pays off, as the A5 Integrated amps laboratory run amply shows. It puts out 75 watts at 8 ohms and 110 watts at 4 ohms, dimensioning with a sense of proportion. The distortion graph for a load of 8 ohms shows a consistently low distortion level up to the maximum output. The unweighted signal-to-noise ratio of 86.5 decibels (A) (5 watts, 8 ohms) is as pleasant as the excellent channel separation — here is where the dual mono design pays off. At 5 watts, we measured just 0.018 percent distortion at 8 ohms and 0.026 percent at 4 ohms. At rest, the device uses a very moderate 18 watts, and in standby mode actually less than the maximum 1 watt allowed
 
Practical test 
 
We start with a little music for a grey, rainy day — ZZ Top’s immortal “Blue Jean Blues” is the perfect soundtrack for the foul weather. The A5/C5 combo brought forth hearty, heard-hitting sound. The bass is edgy and energetic. This is no sound for cuddling, but a clear harangue. Billy Gibbons’ guitar isn’t far behind: 
 
The Aurum paints the licks with neon colours and makes it all radiantly exciting. The spatiality is outstanding — the system reproduces the depth and width very authentically. The A5 remains regally on the throne, giving every disk its strong, clear signature. It even works with Nina Simone’s expressive voice, which really needs to be handled with care. It is clearly not a bad idea to pay some attention when choosing the right speaker: In the bass, transducers that put forth real juice in the treble may be a little too much of a good thing — accented neutral or slightly warm-tuned boxes are the speakers of choice. It doesn’t need speakers with a high effi ciency factor. With about 2 x 100 watts at 4 ohms, the Quadral can even doll things up with less effiicient transducers.
 
The bottom line 
 
With its integrated amplifier and CD player team, Quadral doesn’t present an exaggerated high end system, but a real value, even in regard to sound: Aurum A5 and C5 play with directness, strength and effervescence — it’s a very good hi-fi combo
 
All the audio basics are thoughtfully and impressively covered — wonderful transparency, oodles of detail, bags of soundstaging and effortless dynamics can’t help but have you rediscovering music which you thought you knew and enjoyed.
Audio-AV Australia

“their efficiency at delivering quality music from equally capable source equipment is to be admired and enjoyed...

”Topping the sonic picture off, the M50s’ upper registers sound divine, clean as a whistle, extending into the stratosphere and effortlessly precise — and so sweet you’d never tire listening to them"..... 

"The M50s lower registers are very well controlled, super fast and tight. ....Grieg’s Peer Gynt Suite provided the sonic thunder and we gave the 

volume a healthy nudge. The effect was nothing short of breathtaking — wave after wave of percussion flooded over us as we hung on to the armchairs for dear life"..... 

One of this reviewer’s first ever jobs in the industry was working in a German high-end hi-fi shop. Poorlyspoken Deutsch meant being dragged out from the storeroom whenever any English customers happened to wander in to the shop.
 
It was a veritable Aladdin’s Cave of an establishment though, full of esoteric audio equipment from all over the globe. We once delivered and installed a pair of Aussie Duntech Crown Prince speakers to a swanky city apartment, only just getting them in the lift. We then blew the fuses on that floor when we powered up the twin Musical Fidelity A-470 monoblocks driving them. Happy days.
 
Equipmet
 
The shop’s demo rooms were always a source of fantastic sound and being a German shop it was full of home-grown gear, including some of the best speakers we’ve ever heard: Quadral’s flagship Aurum Titans. Those legends of Germanic speaker design are now in their eighth incarnation, and much of what has made them such a benchmark loudspeaker over the years has filtered down through to the other loudspeakers in Quadral’s quite extensive range. Next in line from the big boys are Quadral’s second generation of its Platinum M Series, which the M50s head up. These are a floorstanding design of solid proportions — measuring around 1.14 metres tall on spikes, 230mm wide and 320mm in depth. Each speaker weighs in at just over 28kg, so these are by no means lightweights.
 
Unboxing the first pair to reach our shores, it was clear from the moment they revealed themselves that these Quadrals embodied all that is good about German manufacturing and engineering. You know when something just looks like it’s been done properly and that’s exactly what is apparent as soon as you first clap eyes on the
 
M50s. The speaker comes in two colours — white or black (Black is standard stoic) high gloss, with the colour and finish extending right across the baffle . Our samples looked sumptuous to put it mildly. Fit and finish is as good as it gets — luxuriously constructed and crafted, the M50s ooze quality from every soft curve and cambered edge. 
 
The M50s are a three-way design incorporating twin 180mm woofers mounted back in the cabinet behind metal bars. A 
RiCom-V titanium-membrane tweeter sits between twin 135mm midrange drivers, in their own separate and sealed compression 
chamber within the top half of the cabinet. These and the woofers use oversized magnets and light metal cones made from a combination of aluminium, titanium and magnesium. A wide rear-firing bass reflex port breathes out the back of the cabinet and large 4mm binding posts will accept ample speaker cable while facilitating bi-wiring or bi-amping. Speaking of cables, internally everything’s wired with quality French-made Real Cable.
 
Technically, the specs make for reasonably amplifier-friendly reading — sensitivity is rated at 90dB and impedance given as between four and eight ohms — although as we suspected, the M50s really demand quality amplification and source material to sound their best; they need a bit of current to get them going. That won’t be a problem either, with power handling nominally measured at 200 watts per channel. (Usually you can take this figure with a pinch of salt, but bet your bottom dollar Quadral’s men in white coats have pumped more than this into the M50s during testing and developing.) 
 
Frequency response claims a low of 23Hz and topping out at a 96kHz sample-rate-friendly 50,000Hz — which is most definitely full range if it actually reaches those extremes.
 
Performance
 
This pair had just been on the road visiting numerous Queensland dealers for a demo, so they were pretty well run-in. The majority of listening was done using Cambridge Audio’s Azur 851C CD player/digital preamp and Azur 851A Class XD 
integrated amplifier also reviewed in this issue. 
 
Sonically, it didn’t take long for the M50s to settle into their groove. We pulled out a few favourites for some initial listening including Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds’ ‘No More Shall We Part’ and Nine Horses’ ‘Snow Borne Sorrow’. Both are reasonably well-produced CDs but the M50s really brought them both to life. The Quadrals had us hearing details in this melancholic collection of songs that had previously been going unnoticed. Delicate and accurate, the M50s open up music such as this with tremendous depth and presence. Both Nick Cave and David Sylvian’s vocals were imbued with their distinctive chest resonances but also sounded uncannily clear and articulate. The same went for the fairer of the species; Alison Goldfrapp and Florence Welch’s resonances moved from the chest to the head and the higher octaves were delivered with that same sense of 
clarity and naturalness, all within a wonderfully transparent midband.
 
The lower registers were somewhat understated — not in a bad way, but the bass response from these ample floorstanders is a bit more subtle than you’d first expect. Firstly, despite the large rear-firing port, the M50s are quite happy with their backs reasonably against the wall. They still need some room — half a metre at least, but even this close the bass reinforcement doesn’t sound bloated or boomy. The M50s lower registers are very well controlled, super fast and tight. We dug out a particularly favourite torture disc to see just how low the M50s could go — a Telarc classical sampler with some particularly dynamic excerpts. Mahler’s Symphony No.2 and Grieg’s Peer Gynt Suite provided the sonic thunder and we gave the volume a healthy nudge. The effect was nothing short of breathtaking — wave after wave of percussion flooded over us as we hung on to the armchairs for dear life. The Quadrals remained composed and totally in control. The woofers proved unflappable and dug down deep to deliver genuine depth and dynamic power. 
 
Topping the sonic picture off, the M50s’ upper registers sound divine, clean as a whistle, extending into the stratosphere and effortlessly precise — and so sweet you’d never tire listening to them. We loved the way they imaged too — sweet as a nut with wide dispersion. The M50s also created a soundstage with real span and dimension, both laterally and with ample front 
to back stereo depth.
 
Conclusion
 
There’s nothing superficial about these loudspeakers. Their efficiency at delivering quality music from equally capable source equipment is to be admired and enjoyed. All the audio basics are thoughtfully and impressively covered — wonderful transparency, oodles of detail, bags of soundstaging and effortless dynamics can’t help but have you rediscovering music which you thought you knew and enjoyed. They aren’t exactly small change, but for the money, the quality of build and performance easily justifies the price tag. Matched with the right electronics (in particular, a capable amplifier delivering plenty of current) and you’ll have an audio system that’ll have you rediscovering your music collection, be it vinyl or digital. 
 
In the words of many a German hi-fi review — "sehr gut". Roughly translated it means we think the Platinum M50s to be excellent.
Practical, cleanly finished and an extremely superb sounding alternative for the sound-bar market
Area DVD (Germany)
+ Very pleasant spatial sound
+ Astounding level stability
+ Superb high-tone reproduction
+ Effective virtual surround mode
+ Flat screen can be placed on top of the Magique
+ No separate active subwoofer needed
+ Bluetooth
MAGIQUE – English translation - excerpt from a test by area dvd (Germany)
 
“We were really eager to test the sound performance of the Magique active TV speaker, which have now been added to the Quadral range of speakers and costs 599 euros. The design is fundamentally different to other sound-bars…
Quadral’s active TV speaker is also very practical as we just pushed it in under the speaker…
The vocal presence, instrument separation and the clear separation of all vocals as well the overall spatiality were rated as excellent. Magique enters the market as a skilfully produced, fully-fledged speaker and not as a cheap fallback solution. We were all astounded by the bass range: Clear bass instead of half measures.
…the sound-bars are clearly a powerful alternative to the flabby wideband systems used in many flat screens. You will find that a really alive version that always plays successfully is called a Magique TV active speaker.
This is the same as four 65 mm mid-toners, and is so good that it is able to play precise and clean vocal reproductions. The two 150 mm woofers produce uncluttered reproduction in the deep frequency ranges…
…so that the reproduction in the bass range can be described as superb. 
…We considered the materials used and standard of the finish to be excellent…
…Fortunately the product’s carefully dimensioned synthetic grille is secured in place magnetically.
…as opposed to many sound-bars the Magique brand is through and through a robust speaker  construction and is not an unstable plastic design that goes under the TV…
…The voices of the various main singers singing the songs come through as surprisingly sensitive. The Magique does not produce any unpleasant acoustic by-products. The reproduction of the separate instruments sounds excellent. There is virtually no distortion at high peaks. This is also a benefit of the integrated soft limiters, which ensure “smooth” tones at maximum peak…
…the spatiality also scores in addition to the astounding peak consistency….as it is not easy to produce great spatiality as well as the possibility of superbly positioning special effects in this virtual room….
Voices are completely understandable and are not focused so far ahead that they become “artificial”. The incorporation in the overall tonal structure always sounds astounding.
…The setting up of a Bluetooth connection with our iPhone 5 was easy - the Magique was immediately recognised by the smart phone and then the fun started. The BT signal transfer always worked smoothly in our range of tests,…
…Anyone who wants to get the best sound from a single unit should choose a Magique and you will not be disappointed.
 
Conclusion:
The Magique is presented as an elegant yet inconspicuous and cleanly finished sound-bar, which will produce excellent results for you from an acoustic viewpoint. It is also practical as you can easily place a flat screen on top of it. Everything is compressed into a single unit and you do not need an additional external active subwoofer. Despite this the results in the bass ranges are exceptionally good.
Practical, cleanly finished and an extremely superb sounding alternative for the sound-bar market.
Looks like a normal upright speaker from the outside but the inside is a revolution:

Right from the start you can tell that the Orkan has nothing to do with the thin, neutral tone associated with so many active studio monitors: It made its name with Evie Sands’ “While I Look At You” which was so noble and produced such thunderous depth 

Rather unusual for an active box, it also scored in the middle high tone range as everyone enjoyed the sophisticated and sparkling reproduction, which caused one of the listeners to call out:

The separation of the orchestra’s instruments and the soloists was phenomenal, we were able to follow the piano, violin and cello as if we were looking at a pin-sharp photograph.
 

Bass in the listening studio that the listeners instinctively thought that they were listening to the unrestrained power of a mature 12 or 15 inch bass. The bass drum was so rich and springy that the listeners started to move with the beat.

Looks like a normal upright speaker from the outside but the inside is a revolution: 
The new Orkan is a fully active design with an integrated power amplifier. The pressure chamber and the parametric equalisation distinguish themselves in the bass ranges, but not just there
 
The active compact speaker sector is booming, from home studios to PC speakers or wireless speakers. Only a few specialist manufacturers partake in this prestigious HiFi discipline: The production of mature speakers with integrated active filters and power amplifier electronics makes the majority of them extremely expensive.
 
Quadral, the traditional manufacturer from Hanover, has now entered this niche market and has launched their first real self-amplifying upright speaker in the market: the Orkan active. Do not let yourself be confused by the similarity of the names: This is not a derivative of the passive box with a slide-in amplifier of the same name, but a completely new in-house design with three power amplifi er channels fitted in each upright speaker together with sophisticated active filter electronics.
 
The development target was absolutely clear, not to create an active studio monitor, but to bring the sound characteristics of the existing Aurum speakers into the active world. The decision was taken to use magnetostats for the high tones, as their fine foil membranes would clearly profi t from effective active high-pass filter and they would also be able to work without any distortion in the transfer area as compared to using a comparable passive design.
 
The unusually large 17cm mid-ranger ensures more bundling as compared to a smaller equivalent and the head designer, Sascha Reckert, turned to Quadral’s flagship range and used the model from the Titan 8 range in the active Orkan. It has an Altima metal alloy membrane (aluminium, titanium and magnesium) and this combines all of the positive characteristics of the three lightweight metals, especially the increased rigidity of the soft aluminium without any resonance problems that are normally encountered with a pure magnesium membrane.
 
The two identical 17cm woofers are also fitted with Altimas and this gives them a somewhat smaller appearance than the mid-toner. The reason: They are relocated slightly to the rear and the existing pressure chamber effect gives better harmony with the air in the room.
 
This works differently to passive models as the large rounded bass refl ex tubeworks in conjunction with the active filter to enable the bass tuning to clearly go a lot deeper as compared to a model without the relevant electronics. These can be found, together with all of the power units and power amplifiers in their own chamber at the back of the bottom of the box and anyone who has not used active boxes might well be confounded at first by the three very different, but practically beneficial designs for electronic room optimisation (see box below), whereas a professional will know how to appreciate the additional symmetrical input.
 
The three power amplifier channels in every box mobilise a sum of 450 Watts, whereby the bass and mid toner are each controlled by a highly efficient amplifier circuit, whilst the magnetostat is driven by a classic analog amplifier.
 
I want to have fun!

Right from the start you can tell that the Orkan has nothing to do with the thin, neutral tone associated with so many active studio monitors: It made its name with Evie Sands’ “While I Look At You” which was so noble and produced such thunderous deep 
 
A bass increase will occur if placed too close to a wall and this can be corrected by merely relocating the speaker. So easy in theory, but not so easy in practise in real listening rooms: Room resonances and interference result do not give you a wide band, neutral bass peaking, but a narrowband or even a complete break.
 
In order to effectively correct this type of phenomenon, a semi-parametric filter has been integrated in the active Orkan that will not only lower or strengthen the peaks, but will also control the working frequency. In addition to this the characteristics of the bass descent can be switched over three levels and you can choose to reduce or increase the deep bass level if the 
speaker is positioned close to a wall or lightweight partition.The treble control works against the wide band and it should only be used sparingly if the room’s reverberation time clearly flluctuates with the frequency and the general tonality appears too muffled or too light.
 
Bass in the listening studio that the listeners instinctively thought that they were listening to the unrestrained power of a mature 12 or 15 inch bass. The bass drum was so rich and springy that the listeners started to move with the beat .
 
Rather unusual for an active box, it also scored in the middle high tone range as everyone enjoyed the sophisticated and sparkling reproduction, which caused one of the listeners to call out:
 
“Don’t sit back! This is fun!”
 
Its approach to more serious music, in this case Beethoven’s Triple Concerto played by the London Symphony Orchestra, left us feeling that it was probably over-embellished. Not that any of the detail was concealed, (quite the opposite), but it reproduced the work with such powerful strokes and melting strings that we playfully thought that it had been given a real touch of Hollywood gloss! The separation of the orchestra’s instruments and the soloists was phenomenal: We were able to follow the piano, violin and cello as if we were looking at a pin-sharp photograph.
 
Madonna’s song “The Power Of Goodbye” brought her style right to the forefront: The bass waves in the listening studio were both fat and crispy with no apparent limit to their depth.  The rhythm was agile and powerful, but not too dry. This resulted in looseness and a silvery smooth reproduction of the voices and the synthetic sounds. The new Orkan is not a party box, 
but a fun box in the best audiophile sense and it was not the sobriety of the active monitors that was occasionally commented on.
…..Malte Ruhnke ■

Awards

AURUM ALTAN active with a "favourite award 2014".

The famous German internet magazine "fairaudio" awarded our AURUM ALTAN active with a "favourite award 2014". - they do this procedure each year with those products which convinced the editor most.

Testimonials

a big thanks for the Quadral M4 speakers
Hi Terry,
Just wanted to say a big thanks for the Quadral M4 speakers I just purchased from you not quite a week ago.  

They sound great and cover the spectrum of music from classical through to grunge real well - they certainly go low in terms of sounds they can produce.

Classical sounds amazing with all the cello's and woodwind and the depth in rock is so much greater too.  

Coupled with the Perreaux amp and Cd player it is a great match - when kiwi's and germans get together it works very well - the jets in Top Gun sound the best ever.  The quality finish is significant too.  

Thanks for your help in making this choice.  

.......Darryl

We are very pleased with the result.....
Quadral Aurum Montans
 
Terry skilfully selected three potential speakers from his stable, within our target price range and demonstrated them patiently in a revealing listening experience in his ideal demonstration room. This made a choice for home audition easier  as the character of each pair of speakers was clearly revealed.
 
We tried the Quadral Aurum Montans which Terry set up in our lounge and are delighted .  They provide a full frequency range with well-integrated sound, a pure and refined treble, rich but fast mid-range and  room-filling bass in proper proportion.
 
They play well without losing balance  at lower volumes which Kathleen prefers when reading, doing handwork or when we have dinner guests.
 
We are very pleased with the result and grateful for Terry's perceptive help and suggestions.
 
Regards
Rodney