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Wilson Audio SabrinaX Loudspeakers | REVIEW

by Dave McNair in Loudspeakers

Most audiophiles know of the unwavering commitment to accuracy and groundbreaking industrial design baked into the DNA of every Wilson Audio product (website), and the new Wilson Audio SabrinaX loudspeakers are no exception. This was first evident in Dave Wilson’s original assault on the state of the art with his WAMM design circa 1981, and other loudspeaker systems followed over the years. Along with advancements in materials science and simple but visually striking industrial design [...]


  • The Sonus faber Maxima Amator loudspeakers (website) have taken me by surprise. I was so zeroed-in and focused on the idea of the perfect two-way bookshelf monitor, a longtime passion of mine, and now I have this feeling that someone with an Italian accent is leaning close to me, whispering in my ear: “Have you thought about a nice two-way tower? Maybe that’s what you’ve been searching for all this time.” It’s an interesting argument—while the floor-standing approach may introduce a [...]
  • What’s wrong with hitting the ground running? I bring this up because I’ve been spending the last couple of months with the Acora Acoustics SRB monitors (website), the little two-ways with the granite enclosures, and I’ve had more than one person make a comment about the lavish praise bestowed by Part-Time Audiophile on this relatively new Canadian manufacturer over the last few months. It’s true that our Dave McNair reviewed the flagship Acora Acoustics SRC-2 loudspeakers and he [...]
  • Volti Audio Razz Loudspeakers, Part Two | REVIEW

    February 26, 2021 // 0 Comments

    When PTA Editor-in-Chief Marc Phillips asked me to co-review the Volti Audio Razz loudspeakers, of course I said I was interested. This would be my first official review for Part-Time Audiophile, and I’d be fulfilling an aspect of the hobby I’ve fantasized about since reading Audio and other review magazines while I was in college. Excited, I looked up the Volti Audio website and read up on the Razz. My excitement turned into consternation as I read the description. You see, [...]
  • Marten Oscar Trio Loudspeaker | REVIEW

    February 14, 2021 // 1 Comment

      At Casa de McAudiophile, the impressive hit parade of floor standing speakers continues. This latest installment of chart-topping performers is the seductive sounding and beautiful Marten Oscar Trio from the Sweden (website). The Oscar Trios are not only the first speaker from Marten I’ve had the pleasure to hear; their ceramic composite drivers are also a first in my listening room. I found the sound of these speakers to have a uniquely classy quality: they are precise, clean and [...]
  • Marten Oscar Duo Loudspeakers | REVIEW

    February 7, 2021 // 3 Comments

      The first time I heard the Marten Oscar Duo (website), right out of the box, one word came to mind. That word was fast. Dave McNair, currently reviewing the much larger Marten Oscar Trio, used the very same word to describe his first listen as well. I don’t use that adjective a lot when describing high-end audio products, perhaps because speed isn’t one of my main priorities when it comes to loudspeakers. Fast is a word that fans of big panel speakers use to describe ribbons and [...]
  • Volti Audio Razz Loudspeakers, Part One | REVIEW

    February 5, 2021 // 10 Comments

    A funny thing happened on the way to finding the perfect 2-way bookshelf monitor. When I first had the opportunity to review the new Volti Audio Razz (announcement, website), I imagined this 3-way floorstanding horn loudspeaker would act as sort of the sherbet between the courses, and chance to re-calibrate my ears before the next tiny yet precious speaker arrived. I knew I was going to like the Volti Audio Razz, the new entry-level speaker in the line—right underneath the $8,900 to $20,000 [...]
  • [Part-Time Audiophile is pleased to introduce our newest audio reviewer, Graig Neville! We’re busy loading Graig up with gear to review, but in the meantime he’s out and about in the Chicago area, digging deep into the audio scene. A longtime Vandersteen lover, Graig decided to check into Ultra Fidelis, a high-end audio store in the Milwaukee area, to listen to the new Vandersteen Kēnto Carbon loudspeakers.–Ed.] “Hi, my name is Graig. It’s hard for me to say this and I [...]
  • Living Voice IBX-R3 Loudspeakers | REVIEW

    January 15, 2021 // 3 Comments

    Here’s a little witticism for you all to ruminate upon before I dive into the Living Voice IBX-R3 (website) loudspeakers: “You can have it all, but just not at the same time.” My wife really likes this one, as it was told to her many years ago by a very smart matron when she was trying to raise children, earn a graduate degree, volunteer in the community, and forge ahead with a professional career. Once she took the advice to heart, her life took on a sense of much-needed focus and [...]
  • Audiovector R 6 Arreté Loudspeaker | REVIEW

    January 8, 2021 // 5 Comments

    “We Come From The Land Of The Ice And Snow…” Denmark may not be Iceland (or wherever Mr. Plant was wailing about in that song) but latitude-wise, it’s good enough for my literary purposes. Seriously, what is going on in those northern European (and Canadian) climes to produce such amazing speakers? With the Audiovector R 6 Arreté (website), these Danish loudspeaker veterans have produced yet another ultra-performer to add to the Legends of Scandinavian Speaker Craft. The [...]
  • Focal Kanta No. 2 Loudspeakers | REVIEW

    January 3, 2021 // 4 Comments

    The Focal Kanta No. 2 (website) speakers first caught my eye at an RMAF a year or two ago, speckled up in a brilliant citron yellow and sounding, well, swell. The sound was performing that tricky balancing act between leaping out into the room and providing a picture into a recording without launching full-scale ear assaults. Intriguing. I made a mental note of it, filing away the experience into my aural-cerebral notebook.  Words and Photos by Grover Neville Fast forward to this year, and [...]
  • Hi-Fi reviewers like reviewing products that sound good to them. I’m no exception. If I can’t hear a component before actually getting it, I’m always a bit leery. So it was a welcome and pleasant surprise when I fired up a pair of Chario Constellation Cygnus speakers (website) in my listening room. After the hit parade of excellent loudspeakers I’ve recently had the pleasure of reviewing, it was a relief to find out that the relatively unknown (in the US) and modestly priced Cygnus [...]
  • Sonner Audio Legato Unum Loudspeaker | REVIEW

    December 18, 2020 // 1 Comment

    The story begins with my coverage of the Sonner Audio (website) Legato Unum at hi-fi shows, and what I found accompanying the brand. Touring the hi-fi show circus circuit I often found myself face-to-face with many of the audio industry’s most interesting characters. The bulk of them are pleasant and interesting people. A select few are extraordinarily engaging and charming. Gunny Surya, the President of Sonner Audio, easily fits into all of those aforementioned descriptions. If you care [...]
  • The Best Floorstanding Speakers | Buyers Guide 2021

    December 4, 2020 // 19 Comments

    The Best Floorstanding Speakers [Editor’s note: Welcome to the Part-Time Audiophile Buyers Guide for 2021! This year we decided to mix it up a little by breaking up the Buyers Guide into sections, which makes it a far more manageable read. And oh, we know what you’re thinking–the best floorstanding speakers? Really? Are we discriminating against height-challenged monitors? Isn’t it really just “different flavors of ice cream?” Let’s clear this up: these [...]
  • The Best Bookshelf Speakers | Buyers Guide 2021

    December 4, 2020 // 13 Comments

    The Best Bookshelf Speakers [Editor’s note: Welcome to the Part-Time Audiophile Buyers Guide for 2021! This year we decided to mix it up a little by breaking up the Buyers Guide into sections, which makes it a far more manageable read. And oh, we know what you’re thinking–the best bookshelf speakers? Really? Is there any such thing as the best in high-end audio? Isn’t it really just “different flavors of ice cream?” Let’s clear this up: these are the [...]
  • Vimberg Amea Loudspeakers | REVIEW

    November 20, 2020 // 7 Comments

    The Vimberg Amea (website) loudspeaker is a two-way, stand-mounted loudspeaker. I’m bringing this up first for a very good reason. When I first arrived at the front door of the Part-Time Audiophile headquarters more than two years ago, Scot Hull asked me what I wanted to review. The first thing out of my mouth was “world-class two-way monitors,” or something like that. If you know me, you know I love the little two-ways, especially when they don’t sound like two-way stand-mounted [...]
  • Acora Acoustics SRC-2 Loudspeakers | REVIEW

    November 14, 2020 // 16 Comments

    After living with Acora Acoustics SRC-2 loudspeakers in my listening room, I consider these speakers to be the newest member of a very small group of speaker systems that are the absolute state of the art in music reproduction. For the last few months, I have witnessed firsthand the incredible coherence, stunning presentation of spatial information, wide and smooth bandwidth, and limitless ability to reveal dynamic contrasts. The SRC-2s produced the finest sound I’ve yet heard in my system. [...]
  • Spatial Audio Lab M3 Sapphire Loudspeaker | REVIEW

    October 25, 2020 // 20 Comments

    A little history, before we discuss the Spatial Audio Lab M3 Sapphire loudspeaker. About fifteen years ago, I was auditioning loudspeakers one after the other, like somebody trying on an armload of pants in a department store fitting room. I auditioned speakers from Ohm (multiple models), Totem, Reference 3A (multiple models), PSB, Silverline, Merlin, LSA, Ascend and Omega. Some (Ohm, Merlin, Reference 3A) took up residence in my listening room for months or longer. Others entered and exited in [...]
  • Sonus faber Lumina III Loudspeakers | REVIEW

    October 11, 2020 // 3 Comments

    After spending the first 24 hours with the new Sonus faber Lumina III loudspeakers, here’s what I came up with. First, imagine you’re not an audiophile. You’re just a consumer looking for a nice pair of speakers for your probably mid-fi system, although your friends and family think it’s already pretty fancy and that you’re “really into your music.” You think to yourself that a nice pair of towers would probably suffice, slim and petite enough to blend into your surroundings and [...]
  • EgglestonWorks Hotel Speakers | REVIEW

    September 4, 2020 // 0 Comments

    This is a story about finding love. As with most modern day love stories this too involved me sliding into the DMs on social media. Can it get any more contemporary than that? This time it is EgglestonWorks’ Facebook page, and I am in search of a true connection. Words and Photos by Eric Franklin Shook EgglestonWorks is an American company located in Memphis, TN and a manufacturer of high-end loudspeakers that start from just under $5K and climb to over $150K a pair. They’ve been in [...]
  • I first met Jeff Joseph of Joseph Audio (website) back in 1992 at the first Stereophile show in Los Angeles. We were both still in our twenties at the time, as I later learned that we were both born in the same year. I shared an elevator with Jeff, noticed his name tag, and mentioned to him that I had recently heard his small Joseph Audio RM7 monitors at Soundworks in Maryland. I really enjoyed them and put them at the top of whatever audiophile wish list I had going at the time. “Those were [...]