Audio Physic Virgo III loudspeaker Manufacturer's Comment
Editor: We would like to thank Brian Damkroger for his time and efforts in writing this insightful review. We agree with his overall impression of the Virgo. There was a very concerted effort by Audio Physic to improve the Virgo without losing what everyone loved about the existing model: big, accurate soundstage, attractive proportions and size, and compatibility with almost any electronics. A close inspection of the old and new models quickly reveals that they have virtually no parts in common, yet the "family resemblance" in both sound and form is undeniable. This is a very difficult engineering juggling feat, and one that took over two years to realize.
As Mr. Damkroger points out in his review, the relationship between speaker size and room volume is the primary factor in a speaker's ability to deliver convincing deep bass with impact. Mr. Damkroger's situation is interesting in that he listens nearfield—an advantage with a design as well-integrated as the Virgo—yet he is surrounded by the very large open volume of most of his house, a hindrance to developing bass pressure. In a closed listening room with an area of up to 450ft2 and ceilings up to 9', the Virgo III produces frequencies as deep as its predecessor, but with better output because it has much more cone area pushing air. We have found that customers listening in a suitably sized room are very happy with the bass performance of the Virgo III.
It may be valuable to provide some background to our speaker-setup suggestions described in the review. When creating our setup guide, it was our intention to support a case for nearfield listening, which offers two inherent advantages. First, by sitting closer to the speaker, you can achieve high sound-pressure levels at the listening position without actually playing the speaker so loudly it overloads the room. Second, the direct sound of the speaker arrives at the ear before reflections, providing better imaging and frequency balance without the use of room treatment.
An unfortunate misunderstanding developed after printing the setup guide. The impression was that this setup method is required with Audio Physic speakers. In fact, Audio Physic speakers perform well with most accepted setup methodologies. It is our contention that, to realize the maximum performance of any fine product, care in setup is crucial. We know that many other brands of speakers can benefit from our setup suggestions as well, and we encourage audiophiles to try them. The improvements are free!
We appreciate the opportunity to appear in Stereophile. The approach of supporting subjective observations with objective measurements is one we strongly support. Please contact us with any questions, and for the location of your nearest dealer.—Allen Perkins, Immedia