The last and final favorite of THE Show this year. The Magico A3 ($9.8k) on full color, no-bleed display in room 213 is the latest $10k iteration of traditionally uber high end loudspeaker brand coming down to the masses.. sort of. At $10k its still half the price of a new car, but at least that car isn’t an fully loaded Tesla Model X anymore.
I’ll take that half-way option, myself. What I heard from the A3 paired with a VAC front end was indeed pretty magical as the name implies. The once-cool-but-now-almost-overplayed cover of Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah by Jeff Buckley rang out true. The tight, vibrant sound managed to side step any harsh pitfalls that a lesser dome might add into the mix. It was a congealing of positivity that left me with one of the best mental vibes of the relatively small audio show. Life, focus, emotion, all poured out from the loudspeakers that stood shorter than the component rack supplying the feed.
If I had to place an educated guess as to the least expensive component in the system, I would bet my money on the Sony network server at $2k – not a bad piece from what I heard but perhaps an unusual choice for the rest of the system’s cost. Unfortunately, in this particular case I would have been forced to guess, because my interaction with Scott Walker Audio (the actual owner of room) both in person and subsequent follows ups yielded no response as to the model or pricing of any other components for the room. That said however, the representative from Magico who was manning the room at the time of my arrival was both accommodating and knowledgeable as to his product. And quite a speaker it is.
Although not the wildest looking $10k speaker on the market, it gets the job done where it counts. In addition to the previously mentioned 28mm beryllium dome, the A3 employs a graphene-coated carbon fiber 6 inch mid and two 7 inch low woofers. From the PR release:
“High Frequency driver
Extended high frequencies are provided by a newly designed Magico pure beryllium-diaphragm tweeter with an optimized 28-mm dome surface based on the fundamental design platform and geometry of the M-Project tweeter. The customized neodymium motor system is encased in an improved back chamber with our latest generation damping materials that facilitate ultra-low distortion, higher power handling, massive dynamic capabilities and extended linear voice coil movement.
Midrange Frequency driver
The newly developed 6-inch midrange employs a Multi-Wall carbon fiber cone with a layer of XG Nanographene, providing optimal stiffness to weight ratios and an ideal damping factor. Overhung neodymium based motor systems incorporate extra-large magnets to ensure a stabilized magnetic field in the 75-mm pure titanium voice coils of both the midrange and bass drivers.
Low Frequency driver
Dual 7-inch woofers incorporate a version of the new Gen 8 Magico Nano-Tec cone. The same properties and materials that allow for the proper combination of stiffness, mass and damping are carried through to the lowest frequencies. The chassis has also been simulated and tested for the optimal combination of stiffness and damping. Minimum acoustical impact is achieved through reducing vibration modes while maximizing air flow. A new overhung neodymium (N48) based motor system anchors the low frequency reproducers to accomplish a super stabilized magnetic field. A pure Titanium, 75mm voice coils are consistent with the technology utilized through the midrange.
The A3 Midrange and Low frequency drivers were optimized for minimal music related distortions in its band pass, in both the frequency and time domains using latest state of the art FEA simulation of acoustical, mechanical, electromagnetic and thermal behavior. All of this is now being done on a single platform, allowing Magico to take the next step in performance optimization.
All four drivers in the A3 are acoustically integrated using Magico’s proprietary Elliptical Symmetry Crossover topology that utilizes state-of-the-art components from Mundorf of Germany. The 3-way network features a 24db per octave Linkwitz-Riley filter that maximizes frequency bandwidth while preserving phase linearity and minimizing intermodulation distortion.
The A3’s massive sealed-enclosure is, like all Magicos, a tour-de-force of engineering. The enclosure is made entirely from 6061 T6 aircraft grade aluminum, identical materially to the enclosure developed for the Q Series. This braced, complex internal structure is finished externally with an elegant brushed anodized “skin”.
The A3 enclosure is best considered as a simplified Q Series design, with the same materials, the same craftsmanship, and the same attention to design and build detail.”
I was also informed that the A3 will not be the last of its kind, as the company plans to expand the “A” line even further in the coming years (standmount anyone?). The A3 was big sound in a mid-small size room, just the way it should be.. I’ll take two.