“This loudspeaker is not a bargain…is a steal “
I have to admit to have felt some curiosity when i Read on Stereophile Magazine, Wes Phillips’ review about a little loudspeaker pair, till that moment absolutely no known..
But it was my own guilty…that little loudspeaker was belonging to most important loudspeakers manufacturer of North America and maybe one of those who have major R&D division of entire Hi Fi market….Paradigm..
Just starting from its name it’s easy to know that it is not an usual factory. Several infact, are work relationships between this Company, Ontario Region based and C.R.C., Canadian Research Council.
In Mississauga, at Paradigm they have the largest anechoic chamber of North America and in this structure are made many studies about drivers response to envinronment changings, in order to craft loudspeakers always less sufferings respect into home placing.
As i said at beginning of this article, american reviewer not only described Atom….at that time in versionFive …a bargain..He went too beyond…saying it as literally a steal.
Naturally by customer towards the Producer!
I remember after those words to haven’t been able to hold out against curiosity to own them.
So, i purchased a pair of it….and……wow…
No words, like happens in the comics…Pure truth.
With same enthusiasm of seven years ago, today i find myself again to listen newer 7 version, but this time not as mere customer, but also like a reviewer.
First differences respect earlier version are Version 5 was manufactured in Canada, as more expensive sisters, while this release is realized in P.R.C.
Who well Knows me can easily tell around i’m not a fan Of Products Made in China.
But times are deeply changed and almost majority part of Hi End brands (Krell for example) make build their products in China.
Paradigm manufactures there its cheaper line only, remaining upper models built in Canadian Factory.
But how does it appear new Atom just out of the box?
In a word only….truly pretty, in its black ash finish (sample reviewed).
This new version shows both drivers, one inch dome tweeter and five inches and half mid-woofer, built according original patent, named S-Pal, or Satin Anodized Pure Aluminum.
According manufacturer, this patent permits to achieve midrange clarity, superb extended bass response and freedom from unwanted resonances and distortions. while For High frequencies reproduction still more spaciousness, crystal clear and undiluted even at the higher bandwidths.
Crossover is 2nd-order electro-acoustic at 2.0 kHz type.
Good average sensitivity, claimed in 90db value.
Positioned upon esoteric stands Ergo, by specialized Deep Audio Italian company, Hi Fi chain i used to listen Atom v.7 was following:
Audiolab 8200 CD player; Technics DVD A-10
Maestro by Audio Analogue; B&K ST-140
Supra Lorad 2.5 for power cable, Deep Audio Ymir for RCA signal cables, Supra Ply for speaker cables.
Listening session starts with tracks 2 and 3 from album on cd “Tiny Island” issued by European Opus 3 label.
First impression is of a correct three-dimensional stage, with instruments well detailed. Great clarity and spaciousness, bass frequencies rightly being and controlled.
Hard to believe they come out from a 5 1/2 inch. mid-woofer!
I decide to try little Atom with classical genre. So, i put under laser, one of most beautiful & romantic albums i’ve ever heard…NEW EYES ON BAROQUE, played from Jeanette Kohn & Swedish Radio Choir, on german ACT label.
Listening to track n.4 ” Già nel Seno” , composed by Georg Friedrich Handel, enchanting Soprano’s voice Jeanette Kohn was reproduced in a way i don’t afraid to define superb, not only given Atom’s price.
Trombone of Mr. Nils Landgren accompanying Mrs. Kohn, together Swedish Radio Choir, was really realistic and fatigueless.
But, overall, very good balance between mid and High frequencies, not finding that bad aspect i usually listen in 80% of loudspeakers of the entire Hi Fi market, despite any price: a mid range reproduction too moved in forward, generating an intense listening fatigue, just after half an hour.
In this sense i don’t believe it can exist a more perfect testing instrument than human ear…it let us know trough fatigue if there are some troubles in reproduction set up or, otherwise, if all is ok and sounds in a natural way.
Third album i selected was “Standing Together” from amazing George Benson…
Playing “Poquito Funk” track i cannot hold my foot to move endless following rythm, while i reflect about timing ability of this little, wonderful, bookshelf..
I have my own idea about Paradigm sound…is a reproduction idea which tends to offer a great spatiality and clearness, a plenty of details and more air around instruments, with a good sense of bass reproduction, maybe a bit less deep than some its competitors, but always fast and lacking of bad bottom last part..type boom effect😒
Remembering other Paradigm models i listened to in the past, then so astonishing S1 Signature….S8 Signature (about this last mentioned i like to remember a famous shoot out between canadian Flagship and three Times more expensive Wilson Audio Sasha model, ending with an embarassed reviewer in difficult to justify price difference) Studio 60, i believe that common sounding reproduction feature into the Paradigm Collections is a special sense to push High frequencies to limits, but always within correct reproduction boundaries.
Like to move its ownself body, forward to see better beyond an overhanging ..but never falling down!
What else to say about Paradigm…a company who wins from almost 20 Years a deluge of prizes and awards….a company who manufactures homemade drivers, who uses really pure beryllium in its tweeters, and not as other producers who simply say to use it, while instead is pure carbon, simply coated with Beryllium powder!
This Atom v.7 is not a bargain only…for me is a true High End bookshelf loudspeaker, able to complicate life to four-five times more expensive loudspeakers, both standing or floorstanding..
Great…..greatest little canadian giant.🇨🇦🇨🇦🇨🇦🇨🇦🇨🇦
Highly, Highly reccomended to enter in True Hi End world at cost of a
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for Technical specs:
Atom Monitor v7 Specifications
2-driver, 2-way bass reflex, quasi-3rd-order resistive port, bookshelf / stand-mounted
2nd-order electro-acoustic at 2.0 kHz
Frequency Response On-Axis
±2dB from 86 Hz – 22 kHz
Frequency Response 30° Off-Axis
±2dB from 86 Hz – 18 kHz
High Frequency Driver
25-mm (1 in) S-PAL™ dome tweeter, ferro-fluid cooled and damped
Mid/Bass Frequency Driver
140-mm (5-1/2 in) S-PAL™ cone 25-mm (1 in) high-temperature voice-coil, oversize ceramic / ferrite magnets, GRIP™ chassis
Low Frequency Extension
50 Hz (DIN)
Sensitivity Room / Anechoic
90 dB / 87 dB
Compatible with 8 ohms
Suitable Amplifier Power Range
15 – 80 watts
Maximum Input Power
Black Ash, Heritage Cherry
10.5 lbs. (4.8 kg)
11″ × 6.625″ × 8.875″
(28.2cm × 16.8cm × 22.5cm)