Adam T5V monitors
Want a pair of high quality yet affordable monitors? Jon Musgrave hooks up the new Adam T5Vs
The last Adam monitor I tried was the S2V – seriously customisable, awesome-sounding and, for many, prohibitively expensive. So to achieve some balance it’s only proper that the T5V sat in front of me is one of the most affordable Adam monitors to date.
Built around a 5” woofer and Adam’s U-ART (Unique Accelerated Ribbon Tweeter) tweeter, the Class-D powered two-way design with rear-firing bass reflex is the smaller of the new T Series designs.
Despite the keen pricing, the T5V inherits much of Adam’s recognisable design elements, albeit in slightly modified form. The U-ART tweeter, for example, is specific to this series but closely based on the S-ART and X-ART versions in their upmarket monitors, and the bevelled cabinet design, although not identical to the AX Series, is close.
However, what sets the T5V apart from the pricier models is the rear-firing reflex port. This could be frustrating if you need to position the monitors right against a wall. That said, at about 25cm from the wall, it wasn’t a problem. If it is an issue, the rear mounted LF EQ (-2dB, 0, +2dB) provides some flexibility. On the subject of EQ, there’s also an HF option (+2dB, 0, -2dB). I thought this sounded very gentle, and I reckon I could get used to the T5V in any of the three HF settings, indicating that, to my ears, the overall top end is very well tuned. As noted in the S2V review, the HPS waveguide delivers a broad horizontal sweet spot but is more restricted vertically. This is the same for the T5V and contributes greatly to the overall imaging and separation, which is excellent. Just be aware that the sweet spot is a bit more restricted in the vertical direction.
Another good thing is the size: quite narrow, considering it’s got a 5” woofer, and although the cabinet is quite deep, front to back, the units feel compact. Finally, you get both balanced (XLR) and unbalanced (phono) inputs with a selector switch – wise, given the target market.
On the downside, the green power LED is on the back, which seems a bit pointless. Also, the low mid range frequencies could be more prominent – apparent when, maybe unfairly, A/Bing the T5V against more expensive monitors. It’s certainly not a deal-breaker, and by setting the LF EQ to -2dB I achieved a much better result.
Adam’s desire is to make the T5V your first Adam monitor: judging by what I’ve heard here, it could easily make you a fan for life.