Dynaudio Audience 40 Floorstanding Speakers

Audience 40

Book Shelf Speaker

User Reviews (25)

Showing 1-10 of 25  
allanctan   Audio Enthusiast [Nov 12, 2003]
Strength:

Detailed sound, soft high, good bass for its size

Weakness:

4 ohms, 86dB -> hard to drive

The best speaker in its price range. The musicality of this speaker is awesome. The highs are controlled and soft while the bass is good for its size. After playing some of my favorite music, there are some details that were not heard before in my Bose system. Also, the sound coloration is minimal, if any. I prefer this than other speakers within the same price range such as: PSB, Paradigm, B&W, Polk, and others.

Similar Products Used: Bose, B&W, PSB, Paradigm, Polk
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
tejas patel   Audio Enthusiast [Jan 13, 2000]
Strength:

Clear highs and smooth midrange

Weakness:

low end is weak, and some imaging problems

This speaker is a good value for the money, but clearly not the leader in this part of the speaker market.

OVERALL
RATING
3
VALUE
RATING
4
Ian Chan   Audio Enthusiast [Mar 07, 2001]
Strength:

Transparent, articulate, and natural sounding.

Weakness:

Bass hump when placed too close to wall.
Looong break-in period.

The Dynaudio Audience 40 (now succeeded by the 42) is a very articulate speaker that always sounds natural. It sounds absolutely stunning with simple, acoustic music, although with pop/rock, it can be a bit "forthright." It is not a speaker for those who like a laidback, distant sound.

When I say it sounds natural, I think what I really mean is that it is very free from "grain" and distortion. It lets you peer into the music with very little veiling. Sometimes what you hear is not always pleasing, but you can be sure it's there.

As a rear-ported satellite, placement is always an issue. The supplied foam plugs definitely cut off the bass hump when mounted near the wall, but it also makes it sound too thin. Make sure you have enough room for the Dynaudios to breathe.

Now about that looong break-in time.... It sounded frightfully harsh and edgy when I first got them, and even with several (3?) days of constant pink noise, they didn't seem to improve much. It was only after a MONTH OR TWO that they seemed to mellow and break-in. Hang in there!

Compared to the Boston Acoustics VR-M50 (which were very good as well), I think the Dynaudios sound a bit less "boxy." It was a tough choice, made tougher by the fact that there were no Dynaudio dealers in MA (I'm comparing the sound after I bought them). However, I sprung for Dynaudio's audiophile reputation, and for their slightly lower price tag.

Overall, very revealing monitors at a pretty good price.

Similar Products Used: Boston Acoustics VR-M50
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
Kalle Johnfors   Audio Enthusiast [Nov 15, 2000]
Strength:

Great natural sound. Very detailed on high frequences and I must say that I am impressed by the highly detailed, analysing sound, after comparing the Audience 40 with other similar speakers such as ALR/Jordan and B&W. The Dynaudio Audience 40 speakers delievers a sound that is far greater
than what you would expect by speakers of this size.

Weakness:

Maybe some lack of lower frequency reproduction. However, I
must say that these loudspeakers still provides a good
"punchy" bass for its size.

Overall, I am more than happy with the sound. The Audience
40 are in the same division as far more expensive floor standing modells. Great natural, clean sound and I can recommend these loudspeakers to anyone.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Jick   Audio Enthusiast [Apr 29, 2000]
Strength:

warm; musical; smooth, liquid midrange; no harshness; detailed; bass is very much controlled

Weakness:

soundstage not so wide; bass does not reach the lowest registers; transparency not perfect (altough still very good)

I have been listening to my sytem extensively (everyday for almost two months) and have made comparisons. Hence, I feel competent to make a review. If I find anything change then I will update the review in the future. But I think my opinions have already been formed and are enough to help potential auditioners of this product.

A short run through how the other products did not fit my taste is in order, followed by an explanation of what made the Dyns the choice for me:

Tannoy R1 - way too polite, laid back; too warm
Tannoy M2 - muddled sound; bass overlaps mids; too dark
Wharfedale 7.1 - lacks dynamics and definition
NHT Super One - lacking in bass
Paradigm Minimonitor - too boomy; felt potential for harshness
Paradigm Titan - very good speaker but just didn't click with me
Paradigm Atom - lacks some bite
Acoustic Energy Aegis Two - not as dynamic; presentation doesn't suit my tastes
B&W 601 - too forward sounding and had a hint of grain
B&W 602 - too harsh and boomy; a bit muddled

And now to the almighty Dyns - hmmmm ..where do I begin with the praise? For some reason, it just dropped my jaw at first listen. The instruments sound much more real and natural. Cymbals possess so much realism in the sound - other speakers would border on harshness. Yet, cymbals are never dull. The snapping finger sound in the backgroud of Eric Clapton's "Blue Eyes Blue" just sounded so real. The timeless bass riff of U2's "With Or Without You" was well produced note for note with such control and finesse - whereas other speakers would get boomy on the bass notes and get lost in the lower notes. The guitars of the live acoustic version of the Eagles' "Hotel Calfornia" as well as the guitars of Dire Straits' "Romeo and Juliet" just sounded so real. Listen to The Corrs' Unplugged cover of REM's "Everbody Hurts" and the vocals and emotion will just raise your neckhairs. Instruments have much more air between them, as compared to the other speakers.

I just can't sing heaps of praise without putting in some negatives otherwise this would not be a credible review. I did further testing as a brought the B&W 601s home just to compare. The soundstage of the Dyns was not as accurate as the 601s. On second thought though, I realized that perhaps I was too caught up with the music and the seductive character of the Dyns that I did not have time to notice the precise placements in the soundstage. The 601s, despite their transparency, did not emote to me as much as the Dyns did. The 601's sounded too artificial and digital. If you want a smooth, liquid, warm and musical sound the Dyns fit the bill. The 601's were more of dry, lean, and detailed.

When you talk of warm, musical and liquid sound - people easily confuse it to be dark, polite and laid-back. This was not the case with the Dyns. Despite their warm character, they were very dynamic, and the instruments seemed to stay/echo longer before fading out. The Dyns could easily rock.

The bass had much control and finesse but in some of the lower notes, it seemed to lack some "bite" and it lost its attacking character. The Paradigm Minimonitors have bass that can remain biting you no matter how low it goess. But they bordered on being boomy.

If you look at the products I auditioned, there were a lot! So it must say something about the Dyns - they deserve five stars. Any shortcomings they have are offset by the price or are excusable because of the size.

I purchased the Dynaduio Audience 40s for Php 19,800 (roughly $500) at The Listening Room, Shangri-La Mall, Madaluyong, Manila, Philippines.

My system consists of:

Loudspeakers - Dynaudio Audience 40 (bookshelf, SRP $700)
CD Player - Rotel RCD-971 (HDCD capable, SRP $700)
Int. Amp - NAD C340 (50-watts, SRP $399)


My tastes in music are pop/rock music that have real musicians and not some programmed beats. I like U2, Police, and other similar bands. I also listen to Unplugged stuff.

Jick

PS: Feel free to email me if there are any queries or clarifications about this review or about any component in my system.







Similar Products Used: (Similar Products Auditioned) Tannoy R1 & M2; B&W 601 &602; Paradigm Titan, Atom and Mini-Monitors; Wharfedale 7.1; NHT Super One; Acoustic Energy Aegis Two
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
John   Audio Enthusiast [Feb 20, 2001]
Strength:

Practically everything

Weakness:

Low bass (of course)

This is an update to my previous review.

Substitution of #12 AWG speaker wire from Du Shack fixed ALL of the problems I had with these speakers. They are now simply amazing. The previous wire was short lengths of #16 zip cord, which *should* be adequate. Nope.

After years of scoffing at super-duper cabling, I am now in the uncomfortable position of having to rethink my whole stance on this issue. The difference was NOT subtle! Gone is all of the harshness I complained about, and imaging is now very good indeed.

The bottom line is that these speakers are an absolute steal. I brought home a pair of $800 Paradigm Studio 20's for comparison, and it took about 15 seconds for both me and my non-audiophile girlfriend to decide that they weren't in the same league as the Dynaudios. This was *before* I swapped the speaker cable. As it is now, I can't think of any speaker in this price range that is even in the same league.

Maximum ratings for this class, unreservedly.

Similar Products Used: Paradigm Studio 20, many others in shop settings
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Miika   Audio Enthusiast [Oct 31, 2001]
Strength:

Amazing sound, looks..

Weakness:

The lack of bass

What can I say, I highly recommend these speakers for everyone, and if you can afford, buy bigger Dynaudio's! I somehow liked very much of the long burn-in period..

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Lok   Audio Enthusiast [Oct 27, 2001]
Strength:

Accuracy and natural sounding with amazing bass drive for it's size.

Weakness:

Long burn in period

I have always wanted a pair of Dynaudio speakers since I first heard a large pair of floor standers going back 16 plus years ago. I recently had reason ( found a good excuse ) to update my small system in the bedroom as there are times when I don't feel like waiting around for my main system ( pre/power combo and hybrid ribbon speakers ) to warm up just for a bit of mood music - and I've got to get out of bed for this ! After a quick aural re-acquaintance at my local Dynaudio retailer, I hurried home to connect these beauties up and start burning them in and YES they do take longer to burn in than most other speakers. The sound from these little marvels are just soooo natural and free from grain. The highs are clear and crisp with a mid-band that is true to form of Dynaudio. Although these are termed as bookshelf speakers I urge anyone using them to put them on stands and don't let them suffocate on an actual bookshelf. Do this and you'll be rewarded with a very nice soundstage and even more natural presentation. Being fairly neutral, these speakers will play it how it is, so if it's a good recording it will shine and vice versa. Vocals come across clear and lifelike the Bass is amazing considering the size of the driver and the speaker enclosure, this is thanks to Dyn's oversized aluminium voice coil/piston design no less ! Overall, I love these mini marvels and I believe you would be hard pressed to find something better for the same or less money !!!!!

Equipment used in this review

Dynaudio Audience 40's placed on speaker stands
NAD 3020i Integrated Amplifier
Sony XA5ES CD Player
Tara Labs Prism 55 interconnects
QED Silver Anniversary Speaker Cable

Similar Products Used: B&W, Polk, Kef & Monitor Audio
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
Juan Ignacio Curone   Audiophile [Jul 18, 2001]
Strength:

good mid-band, very acurated and detailed sound

Weakness:

none

The sound of this small loudspeakers is really great, more if we have in mind the price, I listened it with an integrated amplifier Audio Analogue Puccini SE, and a CD player, model Paganini (Audio Analogue too)

It is distinguished because flat frequency response, with little level of coloration, in sum, this is the kind of sound that I like definitely.

I think these loudspeakers are better than others more expensive, I like very much than the B & W design, in which I find the high frequency a bit hard, and over all the bass have a tendency to be “fat”.

There are ideal to be used in small rooms, associated with goods equipment. Besides, it could be used in near field monitoring.

Similar Products Used: B&W CDM-1 SE,Cabasse Pianosa
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Juan Ignacio Curone   Audiophile [Jul 18, 2001]
Strength:

good mid-band, very acurated and detailed sound

Weakness:

none

The sound of this small loudspeakers is really great, more if we have in mind the price, I listened it with an integrated amplifier Audio Analogue Puccini SE, and a CD player, model Paganini (Audio Analogue too)

It is distinguished because flat frequency response, with little level of coloration, in sum, this is the kind of sound that I like definitely.

I think these loudspeakers are better than others more expensive, I like very much than the B & W design, in which I find the high frequency a bit hard, and over all the bass have a tendency to be “fat”.

There are ideal to be used in small rooms, associated with goods equipment. Besides, it could be used in near field monitoring.

Similar Products Used: B&W CDM-1 SE,Cabasse Pianosa
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Showing 1-10 of 25  

(C) Copyright 1996-2018. All Rights Reserved.

audioreview.com and the ConsumerReview Network are business units of Invenda Corporation

Other Web Sites in the ConsumerReview Network:

mtbr.com | roadbikereview.com | carreview.com | photographyreview.com | audioreview.com