Reviews, something we have spoken about doing for a while now. We’re blessed with playing with all manners of new and exciting equipment in our industry so it seems fitting we should share these experiences (As well as we can anyway!) with whoever may be interested.
In a later post we’ll be showing you our demonstrator and modular based test bed, its a new mini cooper JCW with an install designed around being able to fit, refit, remove and swap between whatever products we are using or are given for review purposes. The one and only way (in our opinion of course) that a product can be tested in an exacting environment where no other parameter is changed other than the targeted test equipment.
Here are a couple of images to give you the jist –
More on our test car in another post, In question in this test are the fantastically packaged Gladen Audio Aerospace 3 way active component set. Gladen are a Germen company specialising in component speaker, subwoofers and amplifiers. The brand was founded in 1997 By Henning Gladen with one goal – Perfect sound reproduction.
We wont be using press release pictures, rather our own as we feel its the right way, anyone could write a “blind” review right?
Gladen Audio Aerospace 165.3
RRP £1900 in active form
Available in modular config
2x 200/300 Watt (System)
20 mm tweeter (28mm in our set)
3” phase plug midrange
6,5” dust cap mid-woofer
3 ohm impedance
Here on our showroom table –
Installed and ready to go –
Installed and fired up with simple timing/crossover tuning for around 30 mins and they came to life.
Most speakers have noteable stand out characteristics, wether they be nuteral sounding, energetic, dull, soft… The list is endless. The one stand out signature of these speakers is their pace, the speed/accuracy on tap in this set is fantastic and you’re never found wanting. This isn’t to say they’re lacking anywhere else, we chose the larger 28mm soft dome in our set due to its desirable bandwidth, its worth mentioning you can spec the speakers between a handful of different tweeters and midbass units depending on your favourable crossover points and whether you decide to go two or three way, we chose the midbass from the two way and the largest of the tweeters so we could also experiment with them as a two way set in a different setting on our processors.
The Aerospace do need a little time to burn, ours are around 50hrs in now and are just getting better and better with each listen. Listening to such things as Kylies Abbie Road sessions the space around her voice and certain instruments and the way they linger in the air is excellent. Switching over to Daft Punk – Fragments of time, Vocals are warm and laid back whilst drum sounds are snappy, fast and energetic.
Build and Installation –
The feel of the product in your hand, its weight, finish and general look are all subconscious factors in what make us decide if a product is quality or not, ultimately if we are going to want it or not.
These speakers are light, usually a red flag in terms of hand held quality.. However, we need to go back to the speakers roots and their name, “Aerospace”.. Henning Gladen, the man behind the Gladen brand is an aerospace engineer. Naturally everything that’s gone into the flagship speakers is of the highest engineering order, the die cast frame with unique tapered blades supporting the basket, each one of which is a different shape to channel air in the path of least resistance and to minimise standing waves. The C7 cone technology with no less than seven layers to keep the cone as rigid yet as light as possible. There’s no tech that I can find to support the make up of the magnet/motor assembly unfortunately although I’m almost certain the magnet is a Neo magnet given its size and weight on all three components.
The installation of our set couldn’t be easier due to the nature of the modular car, One short fall I suppose is that you do have to glue (supplied) your own grilles on to the mounting rings, now with how well though out the package is as a whole I’m sure there will be a reason for this although in our installation it didn’t show its face. The mounting assemblies on all three speakers have enough space for decent sized machine fixings or screws, the binding posts on the midbass are very nice push fit designs the look to be stainless. As with any 3″ midrange speaker the terminals are quite close to the mounting face inner diameter although we’re yet to find a 3″ midrange that isn’t! That said the fixings for the midrange are very well spaced from the driver so there is less risk of “blowing through” when drilling to secure it. There are 6 fixings per speaker.
The tweeters in this set are the stand out drivers for me, should their have to be one. Subtle laid back tweeters with decay for ever, however they have the ability to get loud, fast and energetic should the format you are playing demand that. Its worth noting I have only tested the larger of the tweeters, the 28mm so I can’t speak for the others. They have silver fixed fly leads and the build of the unit couldn’t be better.
Overall, I’m hugely impressed by these speakers, I’ll admit I was apprehensive having heard and owned some very special speakers in the past (of which I can’t review really as they’re no longer current) but they got through to me quite well, I can’t pull a fault with them if I’m honest. I’m looking forward to seeing how they fair against higher priced equipment in the future but for now these are a rock solid part of our port folio that we can confidently recommend. 10 points.
Many thanks for reading if you got this far, we will be trying our best to review as many products as we can and will keep you in the loop with a “no bullshit” approach. Also, if there are ways you think this review process can be bettered then by all means give us some feedback.