It’s been about four years since we appointed the Focal Sopra No1 as our reference speaker. Initially with a set of AVM M30 mono’s and a Pass Labs XP10 pre-amp. Later that became a Pass Labs XP12 with the Bryston 4B SST3. Fed by a Metrum Acoustics Pavane with Ambre streamer. Why is that Focal […]
We performed a trio test on Friday 24 April: the Focal Sopra No1 versus the Paradigm Persona B versus the Kudos Titan 505. Three masterful bookshelve speakers – monitor speakers – each with their own strong points. We have used our live stream set-up to show what they are capable of. We also shared our […]
Next Friday – April 24th 2020, 10:00 CET – we are going to do another live test. A trio test. The Focal Sopra No1 versus the Paradigm Persona B versus the Kudos 505. Three Titans. For powering them, we use our trusty reference system.
Bookshelfs – or monitors – do not have a real low end. And cheap speakers don’t sound good by definition. Isn’t that right? Well, uh… …in the old days, maybe. But is that still true? We would like to know what the state of affairs is in the entry segment. Say up to about 600 […]
What a beautiful product is the Focal Stellia! Both the finish and the sound is really top-notch. Now we are usually not so impressed by closed over-ear models, but the Stellia is an exception. This over-ear definitely sounds well balanced. And that’s what the measurements show. Handsome Focal. Only point: the Utopia measures even better. And if we remember correctly, the stereo image is also a bit larger. But good: open also has its disadvantages.
The Focal Elegia is a premium headphone with a quirky character. Who thinks it’s just a closed Elear with 100 euros off… wrong. The Elegia is really a different model. With a different sound. The Elear has a much calmer character. And this is due to both a – in our opinion – finer sound character as well as a lower distortion.
We think fans of dance, house and pop can appreciate the Elegia. Pure vocal work… less. Just like copperwork.
The Focal Sopra NR 1 is a special speaker. The ‘Fat lady’ as we call her, is detailed and very realistic. Note that the whole hi-fi chain has to be right. The natural sound we have heard in high quality recordings. But also with the poor quality recordings. She lets you hear everything. Also everything you would rather not hear.
Focal is one of the largest speaker brands in France. The brand has a very rich history and a large line-up. Famous icons are for example the Utopia Series. With the top of the Grand Utopia. Focal bases his higher series on a tweeter made with beryllium. This extremely rigid and hard material provides significantly less distortion. While the earlier models with a Beryllium tweeter could still sound sharp, the newer models no longer suffer from it. Another striking innovation are the units, built from flax. Light, cheap and very good damping properties.