XTZ Divine Delta standmount loudspeaker
by Alan Sircom
Let’s begin within the center right here. Regardless of the way you slice it, regardless of how good or dangerous you assume the XTZ Divine Delta is in sonic phrases, as a value-for-money proposition, it’s excellent. All different issues apart, this D’Appolito design, meant for house cinema use as a horizontal centre speaker as a lot as two-channel in its vertical orientation, is a critical worth proposition for one easy factor – the drive models.
XTZ makes use of Thiel & Companion drive models all through the Divine Delta, particularly the C25-6-158 ceramic dome tweeter and a pair of C173-11- 191 mid bass ceramic cone models flanking that tweeter. Why ought to these drive models be so essential? As a result of outdoors of its native Germany, Thiel & Associate is best recognized by its commerce identify… Accuton.
Accuton drive models have featured in a few of the greatest and best-loved top-end designs of the previous few many years. Whether or not they have been the inviting midrange of Avalon designs or the models featured all through in Marten’s fashions, Accuton drivers are related to high-performance and equally excessive worth. That XTZ can place these unique ceramic drivers in a loudspeaker and achieve this with out incurring a five-figure price ticket is deeply spectacular, regardless of how the remainder of the loudspeaker finally seems.
Actually, the remainder of the loudspeaker is extraordinarily competent, too. As prompt, the Divine Delta has two roles relying on orientation. The loudspeaker is bi-wired, and comes with jumpers utilizing XTZ’s personal loudspeaker cable. The loudspeakers don’t include the stands provided, however do embrace a small plate designed for centre-channel speaker use (I’m so lengthy out of the house cinema loop, I assumed it was a alternative top-plate).
These are giant sized loudspeakers for a stand-mount, however nothing prepares you for the field they arrive in, XTZ has gone for max safety (a good suggestion as a result of ceramic drive models could be fragile in transit if not rigorously stowed). Nevertheless, this implies a field roughly twice the quantity of the loudspeaker itself for the MDF/aluminium cupboards. It’s the identical for the speaker stands, as they arrive prepared constructed. For those who did select Divine Deltas and stands in a 7,1 channel system, you’d have sufficient cardboard to construct your self a life-size duplicate of Balmoral.
The crossover of the Divine Delta is a third-order community (with an 18dB/octave slope) and options Mundorf elements within the sign path. It additionally makes use of air coils, iron core coils, MKP capacitors, and MOX resistors.
“There’s a transparent assertion to be made right here: in Germany massive bookshelves give huge bass.”
► There’s a small however essential diploma of seasoning out there on the Divine Delta, each the treble vary and the bass are adjustable. A change on the rear terminal block permits for a -3dB reduce to the treble, and the bass may be adjusted with a pair of bungs for the 2 rear-firing bass reflex ports. Each ports could be opened so as to obtain a slight emphasis within the higher bass vary. With an open and a closed port, the Divine Delta performs with a bit extra oomph within the low bass vary, and probably the most impartial frequency response happens with each bungs in place. These are giant rear-firing ports, two to a channel, however they’re rear firing; even with the bungs in place, this imposes limits on placement and the audio system are greatest in free area. I wouldn’t use them a lot lower than a few metre from the aspect or rear partitions. Bass is a robust go well with of the Divine Deltas regardless of how you employ them, however nearer than a metre from the rear wall and the bass can dominate.
Accuton drivers are phenomenal, however from expertise there are some things to notice. First, as mentioned earlier, the drivers will not be precisely shockproof; they’re ceramic and in case you expose them to plenty of G-force, they will smash like a plate in a Greek restaurant. In fact, until you take pleasure in a spot of loudspeaker rugby, that is extra of an ‘in transit’ drawback, however it means you do have to maintain that massive packaging come shifting time. Fortuitously, nevertheless, this doesn’t apply to amplifiers, though placing any loudspeaker drivers into full clip or amplifier oscillation isn’t beneficial. Secondly, they sometimes want a long term in time; this didn’t appear to be fairly of an issue with the XTZ in comparison with monumental flagship fashions, however keep in mind the speaker you get a couple of hundred hours after you purchase it’s a very totally different animal to the one which comes straight out of the field. Thirdly, they’re considerably temperature-sensitive. They like a heat room, and should you stay in an icebox be ready for them to take an extended whereas to spring again to life on each listening session. This largely will depend on the character of your listening room, however I do know individuals who place their system in a ‘man cave’ which might double as a chilly retailer when they don’t seem to be listening. The XTZ designs wouldn’t work in that context, until he turned the heating on a number of hours prematurely.
The loudspeakers are a reasonably delicate 89dB and with an impedance plot comfortably between 4ohm-8Q always, they’re no problem for an amplifier. I wouldn’t advocate utilizing them with one thing low cost and cheerful, nevertheless, because the loudspeakers do appear to love to be pushed fairly arduous. Nevertheless it’s extra about amount than high quality per se, and so long as the amplifier is of enough energy it ought to sound greater than ok. Personally, I’d wish to associate the loudspeaker with an amplifier that delivers amount and high quality, and people merchandise do exist within the worth vary one may think about using with the Divine Delta loudspeakers. We discovered they labored notably properly with Class D, and particularly the Aavik U-150 built-in amplifier, and whereas this does look like a sledgehammer to crack a nut, the mixture sounds nice in actuality.
My first response right here was to provide the XTZ Divine Delta a tender touchdown as a result of they’re a house cinema design, and residential cinema designs can’t sustain with good hi-fi designs. Then I realised that if I did that, it might be compromising the integrity of the evaluation and I ought to simply give the product a good evaluation regardless of origin. Then I heard them and realised I wanted to cease being so prissy; they sound superb!
The audio system are very properly damped and built-in. The damped bit is available in half from that extraordinarily inflexible aluminium/MDF sandwich entrance baffle, however the remainder of the cupboard doesn’t reply to knuckle-rapping. I most popular the loudspeaker with its -3dB reduce in place and settled on the all-bung strategy.
Even with bungs inserted, there’s a transparent assertion to be made right here: in Germany, massive bookshelves give massive bass. The bass on these loudspeakers is robust; not too robust, simply highly effective and authoritative. You already know whenever you’ve been bassed at once you spend a while in entrance of the Divine Deltas. There’s a bent to placed on one thing with some actual backside finish heft, so out got here The Fats of the Land, by The Prodigy [XL]which didn’t disappoint. Whereas this album is popping 21 this yr, the opener ‘Smack My Bitch Up’ nonetheless has the facility to shock, and that wall of bass has one thing like a blast radius right here.
It’s not uneven, and it’s not improper, however us genteel tea-guzzlers are extra used to mild, tight, and well mannered loudspeakers, and the Divine Delta solely ticks a type of packing containers by Brit-fi requirements.
Luckily it’s not nearly bass, and the loudspeaker is a delicate and refined performer in lots of respects. Maybe most essential of these is its imagery, which is completely first price. This huge stand-mount photographs virtually as if it have been a point-source
However the extra you pay attention, the extra these delicate parts of a bit of music start to emerge.
► loudspeaker. The soundstage has good depth and a few peak, however is most significantly very freed from the packing containers and large of them too. The layering of musicians within the second motion of Beethoven’s Seventh Symphony [Klieber, DG] exhibits that completely; the sombre nature of this motion isn’t ponderous right here, however is translated with a superb sense of an orchestra in three dimensional area, as an alternative of lumped collectively as one amorphous bolus of sound.
It’s a dynamic presentation, too. That is an Accuton power that XTZ has exploited nicely. OK, so these are loudspeakers which have a footprint not dissimilar from a pair of lower-middle tier Wilsons, they usually aren’t that dynamic, however neither are they middle-tier Wilson cash. Once more, this turns into clear on that Prodigy recording.
However the extra you pay attention, the extra these delicate parts of a bit of music start to emerge. This solely occurs when a speaker is principally extraordinarily correct, and XTZ has harnessed Accuton’s mixture of low distortion and nice velocity nicely right here. You do get the sensation of a dwelling, respiration musician of their studio. Enjoying ‘I Misunderstood’ from Richard Thompson’s Hearsay and Sigh album [Capitol]his enjoying and the syrupy early 1990s combine draw you into the music properly, and these fairly giant stand-mounts disappear consequently.
It’s not a totally clear invoice of well being, although. These overproduced albums of the 1980s and early 1990s all the time sound syrupy, however can sound virtually edgy right here. James Taylor’s ‘That’s Why I’m Right here’ from the album of the identical identify [Columbia] is an ideal instance, because it’s all Yamaha DX7 synths backing an over-ripened James Taylor vocal. This specific recording may need been one of many progenitors of MP3, however the full 16/44 CD recording can simply present any brightness to the sound or spitchiness to the vocals, and each have been displayed right here. In fact, the vocal ‘spitch’ sound was minimal, and as a lot a perform of the recording itself, however even with the treble set at -3dB, it by no means fairly tamed that slight zing to the highest finish. I attempted to not let the worth get in the best way of the evaluate, however it’s right here the worth turns into a problem, in a great way. That zing can be unacceptable in lots of these basic high- finish designs that additionally sport Accutons, however right here it’s only a perform of a great middle-priced loudspeaker making an attempt to make a well-balanced sound. It’s additionally the type of zing that’s solely actually noticeable if in case you have logged numerous hours with the extra upmarket competitors. Many won’t ever discover.
Again lastly to the worth query. These are nice loudspeakers at a implausible worth. Are they they greatest audio system ever? No. Are they the most effective audio system to make use of Accuton drivers? Once more, no. However given you possibly can personal 100 pairs of Divine Delta for the worth of a few of these anointed Accuton-sporting flagships, one thing goes very proper for the XTZ Divine Delta. The very fact they sound enjoyable too helps.
Sort: Two-way, Bookshelf/ Centre-Speaker
Drive unit complement: 1 x 25mm
Ceramic dome tweeter, 2x 180mm ceramic cone mid-bass models Frequency response: 36Hz-30kHz Sensitivity: 89dB SPL (2.83V/1 m)
Nominal Impedance: Four-Eight ohm Energy dealing with:360W (brief time period),
180W (long run)
End: Gloss Black Dimensions (HxWxD):
267 x 653 x 380 mm Weight: 26.5kg
Manufactured by: XTZ URL: xtzsound.eu
Distributed within the UK by: HiFiPilot UK
Tel: +44(zero) 1642 232188