Alpine ID X Se­ries

Com­plete Sys­tem Re­view

Pasmag (Canada) - - Tr. -

bvvi­ously, bvi­ously, there are a l lot t of fhi high h qual­ity lit au­dio com­po­nents avail­able for our cars. Some peo­ple choose a sys­tem be­cause it plays loud, while oth­ers may pre­fer tonal bal­ance over raw SPL, but when you ask a true au­dio­phile what they look for in a sys­tem, the an­swer may sur­prise you. Real au­dio­philes al­ready ex­pect sys­tems to sound nat­u­ral and be ca­pa­ble of vol­umes high enough to mimic the live event, so they tend to look for more sub­tle char­ac­ter­is­tics that are not im­me­di­ately ev­i­dent to a ca­sual lis­tener.

If we look at things from a purist's per­spec­tive, the whole rea­son for lis­ten­ing to a stereo sys­tem is to try and recre­ate the feel, emo­tion, and re­al­ism of the ac­tual event. Au­dio­philes spend count­less bliss­ful hours lis­ten­ing to their fa­vorite record­ings, not just for the mu­sic, but for the ex­pe­ri­ence of the mu­sic. That means the au­dio play­back sys­tem not only has to be ac­cu­rate and nat­u­ral sound­ing, but it also must recre­ate the orig­i­nal sound­stage in front of the lis­tener. Granted, some record­ings are bet­ter at this than oth­ers, but when h it's it' right, i ht it can be b amaz­ing. i

This was the chal­lenge ac­cepted by Alpine's engi­neers – to at­tempt to recre­ate the orig­i­nal ex­pe­ri­ence as per­fectly as pos­si­ble. To achieve this would mean a com­plete re­design of their sound sys­tem phi­los­o­phy and present sig­nif­i­cant tech­ni­cal chal­lenges. To bet­ter un­der­stand these chal­lenges, we first have to un­der­stand the ba­sic prin­ci­ples of stereo sound.

Stereo mu­sic is much more than the abil­ity of hav­ing two dif­fer­ent sounds com­ing from each chan­nel at the same time. Every­one is prob­a­bly fa­mil­iar with the term “cen­ter im­age.” This refers to the abil­ity of an au­dio sys­tem to cre­ate the il­lu­sion of the per­former's voice or in­stru­ment seem­ingly com­ing from a spot in open space ex­actly be­tween the two speak­ers. When you get a sys­tem to do this spa­tial imag­ing re­ally well, it's pretty as­ton­ish­ing. The re­sult is the abil­ity to close your eyes and be able to “see” ev­ery per­former across the width and depth of the stage, pre­cisely where they were when the record­ing was made. To ac­com­plish this, a stereo sys­tem must have the abil­ity to very closely con­trol the ar­rival time and am am­pli­tude of ev­ery e er n nu­ance ance of your o rm mu­sic. If the sys­tem has er­rors in phase or fre­quency re­sponse, it can smear the stereo im­age and ruin the ef­fect, pre­vent­ing you from get­ting the most from the record­ing.

En­ter Alpine ID, or “Im­age De­fined.” The goal for the Alpine ID prod­ucts is to pro­duce ex­cel­lent tonal bal­ance, dy­namic range, and sound qual­ity, all while cre­at­ing a highly re­al­is­tic sound stage. This new fo­cus on stereo imag­ing per­me­ates the en­tire line of prod­ucts, from am­pli­fiers and com­po­nents to coax­ial speak­ers and sub­woofers. To ac­com­plish the goal, Alpine cre­ated a whole new se­ries of prod­ucts that are specif­i­cally de­signed to be used to­gether.

The new X-Se­ries am­pli­fiers, speak­ers, and sub­woofers are the first prod­ucts that have been to­tally re­designed to meet the new Alpine ID spec. All Alpine ID-spec prod­ucts are all-new de­signs, and should be used to­gether for max­i­mum per­for­mance. Alpine's other prod­ucts will likely also be re­designed to Alpine ID spec in time, with the even­tual goal of all the Alpine ID-spec prod­ucts hav­ing a “spa­tial imag­ing DNA” iden­ti­fied as unmistakably Alpine.

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