SUR­ROUND YOUR SENSES

New LFR1100 Omni-Di­rec­tional Speaker De­signed, En­gi­neered and Man­u­fac­tured in Canada

NOVO - - PRODUCT REVIEW -

"The sound stage is absolutely stun­ning. Sev­eral hours into my sub­jec­tive lis­ten­ing tests and I was still think­ing 'WOW! I have never been this taken aback by a pair of speak­ers. Ev­ery song I play is like hear­ing it for the first time!' I could not get enough mu­sic to lis­ten to and it stirred up some­thing in­side that has been dor­mant for a long time now."

– Dale Rasco, HomeTheater Shack

In­ti­mate Jazz Record­ing – Holly Cole – Girl Talk – Alert Mu­sic

Canada’s own Holly Cole was record­ing sul­try jazz ren­di­tions be­fore Diana Krall came along and she is an equally orig­i­nal artist. This 1990 record­ing, her rst al­bum, will sound good on al­most any setup, but it re­ally re­wards the lis­tener when played on a sys­tem with huge dy­nam­ics and an ex­tended and fast bass re­sponse.

Spec­tac­u­lar Large Scale Or­ches­tral Record­ing – Mahler’s Sec­ond – Ivan Fis­cher – Chan­nel Classics

This fab­u­lous SACD of­fers out­stand­ing son­ics to match the su­perla­tive per­for­mance of one of the 20th cen­tury’s great­est master­pieces. One lis­ten to this and you’ll be con­verted into a Mahler addict. It’s all en­com­pass­ing, deeply mov­ing and of­fers mo­ments of ex­treme ten­der­ness as well as ear split­ting cli­maxes.

The Best Sound­ing Bea­tles Al­bum – Love – Ap­ple Records

Even though I’ve been liv­ing with the won­der­ful EMI sets of the com­plete Bea­tles re­mas­ters, both mono and stereo sets, noth­ing touches this remixed and re­mas­tered al­bum for sheer sound qual­ity. If you get a chance to see the Love show by Cirque Du Soleil in Las Vegas, grab it. This is the sound­track.

Béla Fleck and the Mar­cus Roberts Trio– Across the Imag­i­nary Di­vide –

stops very quickly and never sugar coats. This is a su­perb per­for­mance form the Su­per 20 on a record­ing that will trip up most com­peti­tors.

Over­all there are many strong points gleaned from ex­ten­sive lis­ten­ing. First is that the Su­per 20 has an ex­cel­lent sweet top end. This is ex­tremely rare in speak­ers, and it is the qual­ity that makes it easy to lis­ten to th­ese speak­ers for long pe­ri­ods of time, and from al­most any po­si­tion in the room. It’s why you’re pay­ing the big bucks. The bot­tom end is also very well con­trolled and quite fast. But no re­flex ported de­signs can com­pete with a well

Rounder Records

I love to in­clude record­ings where I’ve also been present at the live event. Béla Fleck is the King of the banjo – he can do absolutely any­thing with it. Here he plays with the great stride pi­anist Mar­cus Roberts. On drums the phe­nom­e­nal Ja­son Marsalis and on bass we have Rod­ney Jor­dan. It’s a su­perb com­bi­na­tion and I pre­fer it to Fleck’s many out­ings with the Fleck­tones. The dy­nam­ics are huge and you re­ally need a sys­tem with great clar­ity in the tre­ble to do jus­tice to Ja­son’s per­cus­sion work and great speed to keep up with Mar­cus Roberts’ am­boy­ant and ag­gres­sive nger­work.

The Acid Test – Haydn Quar­tets – Quatuor Mosaïques - Naïve

This is the very best record­ing of Haydn Quar­tets I’ve ever heard, but on most sys­tems it sounds hard and ag­gres­sive. It de­mands ev­ery­thing from your equip­ment – a bal­anced fre­quency re­sponse, mas­sive dy­nam­ics, low level de­tail, ac­cu­rate in­stru­men­tal colour, pin­point imag­ing, light­ning re exes, the lot. Fall down on any one of th­ese qual­i­ties and the per­for­mance will sound thin and un­com­fort­able, not at all mu­si­cal. But if you play all your cards right, this is sim­ply mag­i­cal, re­veal­ing the hu­mour, the imag­i­na­tion, the bravura play­ing and the co­he­sion of th­ese four won­der­ful mu­si­cians play­ing on their gut stringed orig­i­nal in­stru­ments. sorted sealed box sys­tem for tune­ful­ness, speed and pitch ac­cu­racy in the bass. Port­ing is de­signed to ex­tend the lower fre­quency reach of a speaker be­yond what could be achieved with­out a port in a sim­i­lar sized cabi­net. In a very broad sense you could say a port trades qual­ity for quan­tity. There is no doubt the Carmel has the bet­ter bass, par­tic­u­larly in how clean and well sus­tained it is, al­though it does not nec­es­sar­ily dig deeper or play louder. The Carmel is among the most re­veal­ing speak­ers ever made. Its res­o­lu­tion is as­tound­ing, al­though it doesn’t play as loud as some other sim­i­larly sized speak- ers, the Su­per 20 among them. Against the Carmel, the Su­per 20 does not match the level of midrange res­o­lu­tion, al­though it will com­pare well amongst other in its price range. You no­tice this more on some record­ings than oth­ers. The more com­plex the mu­sic, or the more del­i­cate the in­stru­ment, the more no­tice­able the dif­fer­ence. The Su­per 20, with its two wide dis­per­sion driv­ers mounted closely to­gether on a nar­row baf­fle, aided by its highly spec­i­fied low or­der cross­over, is a very good im­ager. Most im­por­tantly, the Su­per 20 does a great job of play­ing louder when re­quired with­out ev­i­dence of dy­namic com­pres­sion. On the down­side, it’s a rel­a­tively ex­pen­sive speaker for the size of the box and is a bit over-damped to my taste, lead­ing to the ob­served fall off in plucked notes and slight loss of tran­sient at­tack and low level de­tail.

I’ve been very im­pressed with a num­ber of speak­ers that com­pete with the Ku­dos, in­clud­ing some made right here in Canada. The Ku­dos Su­per 20 is an­other win­ner. It’s a thor­oughly mu­si­cal of­fer­ing from Ku­dos Au­dio that just sounds right across a broad range of mu­sic and lis­ten­ing lev­els. It should cer­tainly be on your short­list if you are in the mar­ket for some se­ri­ous kit. It’s room friendly, ac­cu­rate, well bal­anced, im­ages strongly and it has a re­mark­ably good tre­ble. On top of that it of­fers a lot of sound for the size of the pack­age and you should find it very easy to drive and rel­a­tively ef­fi­cient so you don’t need a mon­ster amp. It’s beau­ti­fully fin­ished and sharp look­ing. Give it a lis­ten and if pos­si­ble, try it in your own home. That’s the true test of any com­po­nent. I think you’ll be as im­pressed as I am.

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