Sunday, June 9, 2013

Wilson Audio Alexia

Wilson Audio Alexia
State of the art loudspeakers

Wilson Audio has been an audio industry protagonist the last 3 decades having presentented some of the worlds most expensive loudspeakers, having state of the art design and implementation with many technological and design breakthroughs. These characteristics of Dave Wilson's loudspeakers company have established Wilson Audio in the global audio market providing to many audiophiles and professionals an ultimate solution in music reproduction. The most popular innovations and design points of Wilson Audio are the special cabinet materials that have been developed through years of R&D known as materials 'X' or 'M', being very expensive, and propagation delay system, being combined with descrete cabinet design and flexibility in terms of speaker to room-listening spot set up. With nothing left in luck or second priority Wilson's designs give the sense that everything is researched and developed to establish high performance that takes advantage to the limit the characteristics of each part on any loudspeaker. From cabinet and drivers to bidding posts.
The last couple of years Wilson renewed and refreshed many models presenting the new Watt/Puppy Sasha system, Sophia, Alexandria XLF, Maxx3 and Alexia which is a totally new design placed 4th from top Alexandria XLF model under the refreshed third version of Maxx. Over the Sasha W/P best seller system offers technology brought from the flagship XLF model.
The Alexia model was resently presented in the Greece's audio dealer of Wilson, Orpheus Audio and taking advantage of the chance I arranged an audition for the new ambitious design. Having heard a lot about this new design I can say that I was really anxious. 

I visited the audio dealer and when I entered the audio room I came across two big elegant design loudspeakers that had flawless an perfect looks. With 1.35 meters high it comes with reach equipment. One 10inch and one 8inch  woofers make the low frequencies cabinet. One 7inch mid range unit in the mid cabinet section and one 1 inch tweeter specially developed from Wilson that uses material dome to match the high quality paper mid unit. The cabinet is made by 'X' material and the baffle is made by 'S' material. Don't ask me of their synthesis as this is  a company classified recipe believed to be something like hypoxic retina or whatever.

Before I start the audition the people of Orpheus Audio dealer devoted some time to me, to show me the book that comes with Alexia and has information on set up and  some boards that have all the the infos, numbers, angles and distances to adjust the cabinets and propagation delay system to match perfectly the drivers axis to the listening spot. Then I was informed that Alexia speakers were correctly set up and I was showed around the loudspeakers to witness myself the adjustments on the speaker. Then the man (Andrew) who made me the presentation showed me were was the right sweet spot and insisted until I was in the right place. 

Before I start with the comments section I would also like to describe the whole system that accompanied the elegant Alexias.

Alexia were driven by a Burmester 909 MK5 power amplifier driven by Burmester 088 pre-amplifier. The sources were Burmester's 089 CD player and Burmester 100 phono pre amp which was fed by a Clearaudio Da Vinci MC Cartridge that was on a Clearaudio Innovation turntable with Clearaudio Universal arm. Cables were Odin from Nordost. As see I was in front of a system costing more than 200.000 euros being a nice opportunity to evaluate properly the Alexia Loudspeakers.

Audition started and the first impression was surprise! I 've auditioned many times in the past Wilson models and specifically Maxx2 (many times) and Sophia.  So I was, let's say, a bit ready for the result, but it proved quite the opposite. The openness of Alexia across the whole spectrum if you listen and think carefully SHOCKS ! And I'm not exaggerating!  Any detail printed on the aluminium CD surface is heard. Even digital errors and artefacts. Surely a role in this claims also the rest of the system but in any case the loudspeakers have the role of the electrical to kinetic/sound pressure transformation and if this part of the system is incapable of doing this job perfect, then the mission is not well accomplished. And here comes the Alexia. Total cabinet audio absence, as there are no audible colourings or contributions in the final result. You have the feeling that the speaker drivers are free to do there job and express their talented characteristics in a way that even the most difficult recordings with multi vocal performings are reproduced with natural ease! Piece of cake for the Alexia! Dynamic ease and uncompressed playback with really big bodies make you feel goose bumps even if you listen to a song for the first time. The amount of detail and transparency that these speakers are capable to deliver with the characteristics I mentioned earlier compose e performance that really brings to the edge playback. I could really feel all the time that the medium was reproduced to the edge  and was poor in front of the capabilities of the system. I didn't have the chance to listen to high resolution formats such as 24/192 recordings to listen were these speakers can reach. It is a bit hard to describe the level of high performance of Alexia. Each recording was presented as it was with its spacious characteristics and atmosphere being a part of it and not being heard as an ability of the system reproduction. Forget convenient loudspeaker playback. We are taking for an audition experience that makes get up from the couch and say 'what the heck'!!! If you like to have a speaker to 'say' things as they are you an audition to your life with Alexia. If you like 'your earl grey tea with sugar and milk' look somewhere else! This is a pure recipe that has no boundaries. I think is useless to spent my time and thus yours in describing tonal performance to mids, highs and lows... This is a homogeneous  sound transducer with no audible driver crossing points, cabinet contributions or colourings to make you feel nice after a hard day at work. Their mission is to play music and give you exactly what is printed on the medium no matter if it comes from CD or Vinyl or whatever else. As for the auditions I made it was clear that the analogue set up was a clear winner with more than obvious differences. 

I have the impression and feeling that Alexia will become on of those cutting edge products that stay in time.

Made for people who seek for the pure.

Wilson Audio Alexia specifications:
Enclosure Type Woofer: (Rear Ported) X-Material
Enclosure Type Midrange: (Rear Vented) X-Material/S-material baffle
Enclosure Type Tweeter: (Sealed) X-Material
Woofers: 8 inches (20.32 cm) 
10 inches (25.4 cm)
Midrange: 7 inches (17.78 cm)
Tweeter: 1 inch, Dome (2.54 cm)
Sensitivity: 90 dB @ 1W @ 1m @ 1k
Nominal Impedance: 4 ohms / minimum 2 ohms @ 80 Hz
Minimum Amplifier Power: 20 Watts per channel
Frequency Response: 20 Hz – 32 kHz +/- 3 dB
Overall Dimensions: Height: 53 1/4 inches (135.29 cm) w/spikes
Width: 15 1/4 inches (38.74 cm)
Depth: 21 1/8 inches (53.70 cm) 
Approx. System Weight Per Channel: 256 lbs (116.12 kg)

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.