Focal Chora 806
Focal… We know that French speaker brand! We’ve been running the Sopra No1 as a reference for years. The reason is that this monitor is very nicely balanced and shows a lot. Without sharpness. In addition, they are not very difficult to control. In short: an excellent loudspeaker.
The Chora is Focal’s new entry-level series. With 299 euros per speaker you have a very affordable, compact monitor that – according to Focal – can reach great heights. The Chora 806 is quite large with 60cm height and 40cm depth. This cabinet – with the bass reflex on the front – contains two units: a 16.5cm slatefiber woofer and an aluminium/magnesium tweeter (2.5cm). Together they should be able to reproduce around 58 – 28,000 Hz. Crossover is at 3 kHz.
We think the finish of the Focal is a bit plastic. At a distance it does look good, but when we get closer we think it looks a bit cheap. Also, the rings around the woofers don’t close properly. Yeah, it’s an entry-level guy, but both Bowers and KEF and Elac are just doing better on this one. And both Brits are cheaper, so Focal: step up the finish. No French stroke please.
We tested the Focal first, but of course we took it back later to draw a conclusion. The Focal is without doubt the most nimble of the couple. The bass is there, but it is less emphatic than the rest. For a moment, we thought there was a wiring fault internally, but that’s not the case. We checked.
If we move around a bit and listen carefully it is clear that the bass is there. But it’s just not as thick. Tight and fast, though. But less present. For certain genres, that’s okay. Others do. Massive Attack doesn’t like the Focal. We hear the woofer working. This is also the case with some other competitors (Definitive, Paradigm), but with KEF, Elac and Bowers it is no problem at all.
Vocal work is very fast, open and detailed on the Focal. Acoustic work idem. If you like that, this is a good choice. Are you going for heavier work and electronic… don’t. Then there are better choices.
Measurements Focal Chora 806
The Focal measures remarkably well. Almost the best of the bunch. That’s why we’re surprised we don’t really think he sounds the best. It’s just a little bald to our taste. But anyway, that’s partly taste. Technically we can’t attribute much to this Frenchman. Except that he doesn’t really like punchy, heavy low: then we hear the unit’s working a bit.
The new entry-level Focal is suitable for those who love vocal and acoustic work. The sound is fast and light-footed. He also shows a lot of detail. If you prefer a warm sound, you’d better look further. We don’t like the finish. We think it should be better.