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Magico A3 £12k entry-level speakers first impressions review

alon wolf magico a3 kj west oneI was honoured to be one of the first people outside of Magico to see and hear the new Magico A3 loudspeakers. The event took place at high-end hi-fi emporium, KJ West One in Marylebone.

The Magico A3 are the company’s newest, and most attainable full-range loudspeaker. Please keep in mind that, should you want to upgrade from the A3 at some point, you’d best be ready to part with £30,000. I’m just putting that out there right now.

The reason for that last statement is that, even though the A3 represents the entry-level for Magico speakers, the price tag is still £12,000.

Now that has hopefully sunk in, their world debut took place on Thursday at KJ West One. They were introduced to a small gathering by Magico CEO Alon Wolf.

Magico A3

Magico A3 and dCS D'Agostino KJ West OneAs you would expect at this price point, they sounded great.

What is also outstanding is that the A3s still manage to sound like Magico speakers.

So, what does it take to build speakers that Magico are still proud of, but cost a third less than their next full-range loudspeakers?

Construction at a price

Magico A3The fantastic thing about the Magico A3 is that, what would normally have cost someone around £30-£40K, is now more attainable.

The encasement is constructed by a full CNC rig that machines the 0.5-inch thick 6068 T6 aircraft-grade aluminium plates. Materially, this is the same as used in the Q-series. However, the new CNC process is part of what enables Magico to be able to produce the A3 at a keener price than the rest of the line.

This braced, complex internal structure is completed with an elegant brushed anodized finish. Each speaker weighs in at about 110lbs.

What’s inside?

Magico A3The A3 sports a three-way driver design capable of going as low as 22Hz and extending itself to just about 50 kHz. The A3 brings together a bevy of technologies unheard-of at its price point. A fully braced and anodized aluminium enclosure, beryllium tweeter, carbon Nanographene cones, neodymium based motor systems and the company’s renowned elliptical crossover.

Drivers

Magico A3 internalFirstly, up top is a 28 mm dome tweeter that sports a pure beryllium diaphragm. A custom neodymium motor system is encased in an improved back chamber. Thanks to their latest gen damping materials you get ultra-low distortion. Furthermore, there’s higher power handling, massive dynamic capabilities and extended linear voice coil movement.

Next is the midrange driver which is equipped with a carbon fiber cone coated with XG Nanographene. Additionally, overhung neodymium based motor systems incorporate extra-large magnets to ensure a stabilised magnetic field in the 75-mm pure titanium voice coils of both the midrange and bass drivers.

Lastly, the low end is handled by two 7-inch woofers making use of Magico’s Nano-Tec cones.

Compromises

Alon - Magico A3 launchMuch of the design and tech know-how owes a great to their Magico stablemates, the S3, M3 and Q3. It is really great to see a company such as this allowing their premium range to trickle-down lessons learned and have them reinterpreted at a more accessible price point.

Naturally, you’re not getting everything found in those higher-end speakers. For instance, the Beryllium tweeter might be based on the 28mm dome created for the M project but the A-series lacks the special diamond deposit covering.

Again, Graphene is used in the A3 but not to the extent that it is used on the M and the S series.

Finally, the finish of these aluminium cabinets. Where the Q series are bead blasted with hard anodizing, etc the same finish could not be achieved for the A series target price.  In fact, the finish on the Q range is probably more expensive than A3s actually cost to manufacture in total. However, the A3 still get the same metal, it’s anodized, but brushed not bead blasted. The end result is still an attractive speaker.

Crossover

All four drivers in the A3 are acoustically integrated using Magico’s proprietary Elliptical Symmetry Crossover topology. This utilises state-of-the-art components from Mundorf of Germany. The 3-way network features a 24db per octave Linkwitz-Riley filter that maximises frequency bandwidth while preserving phase linearity and minimising intermodulation distortion.

Magico A3 first impressions

Magico A3 and dCS D'AgostinoI was truly impressed by their unveiled audio production. It was as if I was only hearing the drivers, as there was no colouration coming from the hand-bolted aluminium cabinets.

This is, of course, what Magico aims for. Alon stated that, as a loudspeaker is not a musical instrument, then it should be built as rigid as possible. As the loudspeaker’s job is to convert electrical energy to mechanical energy, any loss at this point needs to be minimal. The only thing that should move in a loudspeaker are the driver cones. Nothing else should move. This means the frames of the cones have to be attached to an apparatus that is completely still, i.e. extremely stiff. Additionally, they need to be damped, so there’s no extraneous vibrations. Aluminium ticks all the boxes as it’s an extremely stiff material that is very easily damped. Apparently, Alon’s perfect material would be titanium, but the prices would be eye-wateringly high.

The attack and decay of the notes were presented naturally. It was a rendition of part of Igor Stravinsky’s ‘The Rite of Spring’ (I didn’t get which performance) that really made me sit up and listen.

The orchestration had room to breathe. On the subject of breathing, the wood, reed and brass sections really came through naturally. As they layered with percussion and strings it was jaw-droppingly gorgeous to hear.

Are they the prettiest, most eye-catching speakers available? Nope. Unless you knew the brand and construction, I very much doubt that anyone could guess the price.  But this is more the point. All the technical know-how and years of R&D has created a 21st century loudspeaker for the 21st century.

Magico A3 tech spec

Magico A3 dimensionsDriver Complement

  • 1-inch MB7 Beryllium Dome (X1)
  • 6-inch Midrange Graphene Nano Tec (X1)
  • 7-inch Bass Graphene Nano Tec (X2)

Specifications

  • Sensitivity: 88dB
  • Impedance: 4 Ohms
  • Frequency Response: 22 Hz – 50 KHz
  • Minimum Recommended Power: 50 Watts RMS Maximum Recommended Power: 300
  • Watts RMS
  • Dimensions (HxDxW) : 44-inch x 11-inch x 9.25-inch (112cm x 27cm x 23cm)
  • Weight: 110 lbs. (50Kg)

Price and availability

I was told at the event that the UK RRP is £11,998 per pair.

The speakers follow Henry Ford’s colour options, black or black. However, that is in a brushed finish.

You can get yours from March.

Magico A3 £12k entry-level speakers first impressions review

by Jay Garrett time to read: 4 min
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