Dynaudio Focus 10 active loudspeaker

Almost five years after I submitted my review of Dynaudio's Focus 200 XD class-D active bookshelf loudspeaker—my first product review for Stereophile—word of its imminent successor, the digital Focus 10 class-D active bookshelf loudspeaker ($5500/pair), and its two larger siblings arrived via Mike Manousselis, Dynaudio North America's president, Americas. Then came the near-ubiquitous parts shortages and COVID-related slowdowns that have plagued high-end manufacturers worldwide.

More than 18 months later, the new Focus line debuted at Munich High End 2022. I recall my excitement as I entered Dynaudio's huge multiroom exhibit area, and my confusion when I heard sound that, while dramatically different from the discontinued Focus 200 XD, was not what I'd hoped for or expected. Months later, when a broken-in Focus 10 pair finally arrived here, I approached them with a mixture of anticipation and dread. Would they sound similar to what I heard in Munich? Spoiler answer: No!

The Focus 10 is a completely different speaker than its predecessor, and far more advanced. Smaller, lighter (16.5lb), and—surprisingly—less expensive, the Focus 10 is a 2-way/2-driver active bookshelf pair that Dynaudio bills as a "complete wireless sound system." The smallest model in an active wireless digital loudspeaker line that also includes two floorstanders—the 2.5-way/3-driver Focus 30 ($8250/pair) and 3-way/4-driver Focus 50 ($11,000/pair)—its multitudinous playback options range from full support for analog sources to wireless 24/48 or 24/96 streaming using WiSA (footnote 1) and up to 24/192 wired playback of files and streams from various devices including smartphones.

After chatting with John Quick, Dynaudio North America's VP sales and marketing, Americas, and Stephen J. Entwistle, Dynaudio's Denmark-based chief engineer, I realized that the Focus 10's complexity requires significant space to do it justice. Hence, I'll dispense with a flowery introduction and tales from my youth in the late 18th century and instead get down to the speaker at hand.

Among the new Focus line's many features are the ability to use the speaker's wireless, digital, and analog inputs to connect to "every single" streaming service, internet radio, a WiSA-compatible TV or USB dongle, and your turntable. You can stream via Spotify Connect, Tidal Connect, Apple AirPlay 2, Google Chromecast, Roon, "high-quality" Bluetooth, and more.


"If it's been released as a recording, Focus will play it," declares the website. "It" includes anything stored on a networked hard drive. The included subwoofer trigger is intended to auto-power a sub connected to the sub-out port. No equipment rack, external amp(s) or sources, or cables are necessary. If you use the supplied power cables, all that's required are two wall outlets and a wireless network. Plus, thanks to three DSP settings—near a wall, in a corner, or in free space—the speakers can adapt to challenging listening environments. Dirac Live room correction is also provided. An automatic failsafe system that protects drivers from damage when played at ear-deafening levels—a proprietary sliding high-pass filter—reduces woofer excursion as the volume rises. Its protection does not extend to your eardrums.

For optimum sound quality, each driver is mated to its own dedicated, Copenhagen-manufactured Pascal class-D analog amplifier module. For the Focus 10, that means two modules with different power ratings: 110W for the 1.1"/28mm Cerotar soft-dome tweeter and 280W for the 5.5"/140mm Esotec+ mid/bass driver with aluminum voice-coil.

The speaker is manufactured in Denmark. The main input stage and DSP are proprietary to Dynaudio, designed in-house, and manufactured by a nearby subcontractor. The up-to-date Network Streaming unit is made in Austria by the same hardware company that supplies streaming units to dCS. Dynaudio offers an unusually generous warranty.

While many speakers sound very different when their grilles are removed, the Focus auto-senses whether the magnetic "Smart Grille" is on or off and automatically compensates the speaker's EQ to ensure consistent sound. Setup is performed via a downloadable app that allows you to configure the speakers, connect them to your network, assign presets, and more. You can also control them via a lightweight plastic remote, whose battery compartment can be removed with sharp fingernails and determination. Firmware updates are easily downloaded and installed wirelessly.

What's special?
"The speakers handle digital audio in a really unique way," Quick explained by phone. "If they are wired to each other and to the source, all material is automatically sample-rate converted to 24/192. When you use WiSA to send signal wirelessly between the speakers, upsampling is limited to user choice of either 24/48 or 24/96."

All signals pass through the DSP module. The DSP section works at the same sampling rate you choose for playback, and the ADAU1979 ADC and ADAU1962A DAC from Analog Devices adapt to the same frequency, ensuring that regardless of the bit and sampling rate of the original file, sample rate conversion is performed only once, at the very beginning of the entire signal chain. (This was not true for the Focus 200 XD.) "Ours may be the only speaker on the market that limits sample rate conversion to a single process," he said.

During a Zoom conversation, Entwistle emphasized that Dynaudio tries to simplify their crossovers, processing, number of filters, and filter orders as much as possible. By simplifying the DSP, his engineering team was able to achieve more of what they consider the "traditional Dynaudio sound."


That assertion inspired me to ask a sticky question. More than once, industry people have told me that the "problem" with Dynaudio's sound is that, while it's always well-balanced, there's nothing distinguishable about it, nothing that stands out as special.

"We don't try to emphasize things or flatter things," Entwistle responded. "We try to present music as it is recorded. We're heavily involved in the pro world (footnote 2), and this is what the pro guys want. They want a speaker that tells them as close to the truth as they can get. A very honest loudspeaker, without bells and whistles. 'Authentic Fidelity' was Dynaudio's catchphrase back in the day, and I think it's what our current loudspeakers present.

"Our passive loudspeakers do tend to show the weaknesses in your system. If your amp is a bit flat or colored, then Dynaudios present that to you. People in the pro world like our loudspeakers because they sound like the output of whatever they are working on.

"Our job as acoustical engineers is to voice or tune the loudspeaker without hiding its natural performance with the multiple DSP options and filters that are available. We want to let the loudspeakers speak for themselves. It's not about enhancing the performance; it's about laying it all out there.

"It's quite a fun process to ensure that you hear what a Dynaudio loudspeaker is. You can hear what we're after in the Focus 10. It's not reliant on what preamp or DAC or amplifier or cables you choose; it sounds like we want a Dynaudio speaker to sound. It's not dull or boring."

Active loudspeakers are unique in that the manufacturer is in complete charge of the sound. They choose the amplifiers, DAC, the fully digital crossover, the right filters, and which capacitors are in the signal path—everything but the room they'll eventually play in.

"Part choices can dramatically alter the sound," Entwistle said. "If we choose the right parts, the loudspeaker can do its work without us having to mess around with it too much. It's like fine cooking. You pick the best ingredients you can. If you handle them with loving care, you'll have a fantastic meal."

One of Dynaudio's goals was to ensure that every active Focus loudspeaker transmits music's fundamentals and harmonics, removing the need for the brain to do extra work to fill in the gaps. That way, Entwistle said, the brain can relax and focus more on the musical presentation.

The Focus 10 is a closed-box design that relies on DSP and amplifier power to extend bass response, control bass-driver cone excursion, and produce an accurate soundstage. "One of our main goals is to give you a hi-fi experience in a living room, ... providing you don't play them crazy loud. If you play crazy loud or put the speakers too close to the side wall, the bass output will be compromised.

"All our active loudspeakers use DSP limiters to protect them. Our position is that in our active loudspeakers, our drivers should never break. When you play at high levels, the DSP high-pass filter moves up in frequency to protect the loudspeaker. When you play quieter, it moves lower in frequency, down to 20Hz. If you have quiet passages of music with low-frequency ambience, you'll still get the ambience from our loudspeaker that helps with imaging, positioning, and depth. But if you play a 41-gun salute, then the high-pass filter will move all the way up to protect the loudspeaker. You'll still get the dynamics and high frequencies, but you won't get the same degree of bass. This enables the loudspeaker to be listenable at very different volume levels.

"Higher up in the Focus line, you get extra levels of refinement. The 10 has a 5" woofer. If you listen quietly, the speaker will go from 20Hz to 32kHz. If you listen louder, it performs more like a bookshelf. The two floorstanders can play louder before that begins to happen. You definitely get more detail from their dedicated midrange, but all the speakers perform equally well in terms of dynamics, soundstage size, etc., provided you listen at volume levels appropriate to the speaker model. Don't put the 10s in a huge room, turn them all the way up, and expect them to deliver all the bass they're capable of producing. But in a smaller, more intimate living room or bedroom where you're relatively close to the speakers, you'll get far more bass than you'd expect (footnote 3).

"The height of your room matters less than your distance from the speakers. We listen at 3m (9'–10') and at an average level of 80dB.

"We have definitely improved the Focus tweeter with a device called the Hexis. It's a plastic shape that looks like the Death Star and sits right behind the dome of the tweeter, very close to the diaphragm itself. The Hexis helps control the resonant behavior of the diaphragm and extends and helps give character to the high frequencies. It also helps protect the tweeter so if you accidentally push it, it won't tend to crinkle or squash, thereby limiting high-end performance.

"We've also improved the midwoofer's voice-coil, magnet system, and surround. The midrange/woofer is composed of polypropylene with added MSP (magnesium silicate polymer)." Because of this additive, it "delivers a much more natural sound than you typically get from a polypropylene cone."

Footnote 1: Dynaudio uses WiSA to connect the speakers wirelessly because it sits outside the normal Wi-Fi band, is much more robust, has minimal latency (1ms) to ensure stable and accurate imaging, and allows for more distance between speakers when required.

Footnote 2: Entwistle said that the Atmos mix on the latest Arcade Fire album, the remixes of most of Elton John's and Katy Perry's back catalogs, and many new movies were mixed on Dynaudio speakers.

Footnote 3: When Entwistle explained this, I regretted that I had not asked to review one of the Focus floorstanders. Our living room plays larger than it is thanks to its cathedral ceilings, but it opens in back to the dining area and kitchen, and on the right side to the entry way, stairs, and second floor flyway. I expect that I could have cranked up the floorstanders louder without compromising bass extension.

Dynaudio A/S
US distributor: Dynaudio North America
500 Lindberg Ln.
Northbrook, IL 60062
(847) 730-3280

remlab's picture

For that price, I think the Genelec 8331A would be a good comparison.

Electrophone's picture

In fact, after the Xeo 5s were irreparable, I was on the lookout for new speakers. A friend recommended Genelec. I then had the opportunity in my living room to compare the Genelec 8350 and 8351, both calibrated with GLM. In the end I settled on the 8350, which sounded a little better for my taste, a tad less analytical. The best loudspeakers I ever owned, highly recommended!
My loudspeaker vita, starting 1977:
Sony SS-2030 (Terrible loudspeakers, I was young, and on a budget)
JBL L-19 (Huge improvement)
Altec Model 19 (Wow! I should have kept them. I put an ad in the paper, and a Guy drove all the way from Yugoslavia to Frankfurt/Germany to pick them up)
JBL L-112 (Ok..)
Early standmount B&W, can‘t remember the model.
Rauna Leira (Concrete cabinet. Very nice 2-way from Sweden)
Yamaha NS-2000 (Sounded too thin in my system)
Mission Cyrus 782 (Ntwha)
Tannoy D-700 (Brilliant! I loved them!)
JmLab Antea (Almost as dynamic as the Tannoys, but more neutral. Great sound!)
Dynaudio Confidence 3 (Smooth, transparent, lots of bass. But very demanding, amp-wise).
B&W 804 Nautilus (Sounded very nice and balanced in my room)
B&W 804 S
B&W 804 Diamond (Too bright for my taste)
Canton Vento Reference 3 (Bland)
Bang + Olufsen Beolab 9 (Surprisingly good! Weird design)
Dynaudio Excite X14A (ok…)
Dynaudio XEO 5 (Didn‘t last long.)

johnnythunder1's picture

it seems you go through speakers as fast as people go through shoes. Why such chronic speaker change-it-up-itis ? I've had 5 since 1989 - and 3 of the same brand since 2001 (each an upgrade.)

Electrophone's picture

I've always been very curious. Since I've worked in the hi-fi industry for over 40 years, I was able to buy most of the speakers at a discount, and often resell them without a loss.
I am retired now, and believe that with the Genelec 8350A I have arrived at the final destination of my journey through the loudspeaker world.
And I am glad that my wife tolerated my passion, because apart from the speakers I purchased, I took many others home to audition them.

gn77b's picture

as your reply is from almost one year ago but I was wondering which amps have you found to be a good match for them? I own them and have always heard from other owners including the ex owner that they only are at their best with very good amps. I tested them with a few mid-priced ones but haven't found serious changes. Actually, I found the lesser Audience 52s are more demanding on the amp and change for the better by not a small amount with good amplification.

Electrophone's picture

When I bought the Confidence 3 I had a Sansui AUX111 integrated amplifier. It didn't sound like I wanted it to, so I bought a Rotel pre-power amplifier combo, Michi Series RHA-/RHB-10. I was quite happy with that setup.

gn77b's picture

I posted this yesterday...

...but the comment didn't show up for some reason.
When I got the Confidences I used them with a DIY amp (based on class D Hypex UCD180 modules). It was ok but then I switched to an Audio Refinement Complete which I received for a test out of pure luck. I thought the ARC sounded much livelier so I kept it. Interestingly, doing a back to back test after a few years I found the difference wasn't so great as I had intially thought. Then I got an Atoll AM200 (current amp). Not because I thought it'd be better but because it's future proof so to say in case I get misbehaving speakers. The Atoll has serious current capability so at least in theory I should be fine. I also tested them on an older Accuphase (can't remember the model) and a Roksan Caspian. FWIW the Roksan was able to make a pair of Audience 52s change dramatically for the better, compared to the ARC and other amps (I didn't own the Atoll then to make a direct comparison). I keep reading/hearing (the ex owner told me the same) that the Confidences ar at their best with very good amps but TBH I haven't found significant changes with any I tested so far. I recall a discussion on a forum where someone said they could only bring the best in them with a Gryphon which costs a few thousand euros used. So, far from surprinsing, I'm still curious to this day about any unlocked potential. The Rotel seems like a very serious amp.

Electrophone's picture

The review sounds tempting, but I wouldn't buy a Dynaudio speaker again after my bad experience with the Manufacturer’s Customer Service.
I bougt a pair of Xeo 5s in 2016. A few months ago one of the two loudspeakers no longer wanted to connect to the transmitter. My dealer removed the electronic unit and sent it to Dynaudio. From there came the information that a repair or replacement was no longer possible. Very disappointing.

CraigS's picture

I had the same problem a couple of years ago with my 2006 Dodge Magnum SRT8, which FWIW was outfitted with an awesome Audison sound system. Models are discontinued, replacement parts run out (even from scrap yards), and at some point you're sh-t out of luck. I have Dynaudio X14A's on my desk (plus a sub) and I love them, but I guess at some point I'll have to "retire" them as well.

kai's picture

Fig. 3 and the related text doesn‘t fit.
I even don‘t see much difference in the curves.

John Atkinson's picture
kai wrote:
Fig. 3 and the related text doesn‘t fit. I even don‘t see much difference in the curves.

Fig.4 repeats the top and bottom traces in fig.3, normalized to the level at 100Hz. You can see how the higher spl (red) results in an earlier rolloff at lower frequencies.

BTW, the flattening of the high-spl trace below 20Hz is due to the measurement being corrupted by distortion. Fortunately, other than pipe-organ recordings music doesn't have high-level content below 20Hz.

John Atkinson
Technical Editor, Stereophile

kai's picture

Maybe you have a look again on what‘s really published.
The curves in Fig. 3 are all almost the same (I overlaid with Photoshop) and the colors don’t match the text.

The red curve from Fig. 4 does not appear in Fig. 3.

John Atkinson's picture
kai wrote:
Maybe you have a look again on what‘s really published. The curves in Fig. 3 are all almost the same (I overlaid with Photoshop) and the colors don’t match the text.

You are correct. I uploaded the wrong graph to the website. Fig.3 is now correct.

John Atkinson
Technical Editor, Stereophile

David Harper's picture

it ran through me and urged me to drop my pen,tap my feet, and......"
hooooo boy. My Elac Debut B6 speakers have the same effect on me. And for $229 / pair!!!!!

rschryer's picture

I'm sure I speak for all audiophiles when I say we are happy for you. But why do I feel you constantly need to disrespect us on our own soil?

JHL's picture

...that you ask rhetorically. ;o)

rschryer's picture

I'm actually curious as to what compels a person to regularly visit a hobbyist website, forum or FB page, to make fun of the hobbyists, rather than just let them enjoy their hobby, which would be the grownup thing to do.

David Harper's picture

You have convinced me that you're right. I will stop trolling this forum.
My apologies.

johnnythunder1's picture

that I replied angrily to.

JHL's picture

I assume that that compulsion inadvertently expresses the futility of audio by numbers, and that from time to time defectors are cleaved off to go hear great systems and be saved. They're welcomed with open arms.

David Harper's picture

I hear what you're saying. I understand that you all have a vested interest in what you do here at stereophile. I try to resist my compulsion to react to reviews which I read here. But it isn't easy. I understand that audiophiles hearing is mostly influenced by the price of the component in question.

ChrisS's picture

...99cent items that all eventually end up in the landfill.

Your compulsion is misplaced.

Jason Victor Serinus's picture

Do you have research to back up your assertion, David? (If that is your real name.) Because, if not, it's simply your belief.

Then, let's take it a step farther. Do you feel this to be true of me in particular? After all, I wrote the review.

I am not going to try to defend myself or my opinions, or start declaring, "This doesn't apply to me." As I learned a long time ago from my cursory exposure to A Course in Miracles, there is nothing to defend. What there "is" to do is pay very particular attention to set-up, upgrade my system to make it a fine tool for discerning differences large and small, listen closely, and write with integrity and dedication to what I perceive to be the best interests of readers of Stereophile.


David Harper's picture

No. I do not say this is true of you in particular. I have not made any personal insinuation. I believe you are an honorable man.

Jason Victor Serinus's picture

Greatly appreciated.

I also might add when I am attacked, I breathe deeply, examine my actions and writing, and see if I can find a basis for the criticism. If I do, I act. If not, I chalk up the attack to whatever is going on in the attacker. Sometimes, many things are at play.

Every challenge is an opportunity for self-examination and growth. Where would we be without our educated critics? I count myself among them.


David Harper's picture

my compliments on the fact that, much to my surprise, you have not banned me here.

Jason Victor Serinus's picture

It is Jim Austin who does the banning. Not that in cases of blatant personal attack or homophobia or racism or sexism or violating our guidelines, I haven't joined other readers in blowing the whistle loudly. But your posts are none of the above. If they have a fault, it is that they are, for the most part, so similar in nature as to dilute their effectiveness.

We are all aware of the prices of components, and the fact that so many of them are out of reach of the majority of audiophiles. But I, for one, am also aware that the market for components is world-wide, and that there are plenty of people who can afford the high-price spread. Therefore, my focus—our focus—is on excellence in every price range.

The question of value is something else. I, for one, do not subscribe to the "law of diminishing returns." I find it a tired trope, because it is so subjective. If monoblocks that cost $400,000/pair, allied to a digital front end that, in itself, costs over $80,000, allow me to get closer to the artists and music I love, I find the return of infinite value. So, rather than discuss value per se, I discuss what listening through the component I'm reviewing feels like, and what impression it makes on me. That, in the end, is all I can responsibly do.

Price is also tied to country of manufacture, as in "it's affordable to me because it's manufactured in China." We mention the country of manufacture in our reviews, and then let you do the rest.

And now, my deadline calls. Stay safe, everyone, and enjoy whatever you're listening to and with.


teched58's picture

With respect, Jason, here is why I think there's continued complaints/pushback/trolling (call it whatever you want) from so-called "objective" types like myself and Mr. Harper:

--Engineers are ok with you guys writing whatever you want, but it gets our ire up when you claim engineering knowledge sans experience or credentials, even if tacitly out of years of experience at reviewing. This is analogous to a medical blog being written by laypeople and getting trolled by "real" doctors. Or an aviation blog being trolled by SLFs.(I am sure there are many such examples in the wild.)

--As regards the farrago around high equipment prices, many of us engineering types feel that the "love" that's shown high-priced equipment would have more credibility if it wasn't so easily at hand for you guys. As in, you and your colleagues get to sample the best of the best, one after the other. So "we" think that you lose the perspective of the majority of people for whom there is scarcity (i.e., they will rarely if ever have one such $$$ device in their home, much less a different one every other month.) In tandem with this, we'd attribute more credibility if we knew reviewers were paying full retail, as opposed to accomodation (wholesale) pricing.

These are just a few examples, which I am presenting respectfully so we get beyond the screaming matches and attempt to understand each other's perspectives.

Jason Victor Serinus's picture

This is what happens when a reviewer replies to a comment. It's never-ending. Where do you folks find the time?

I'm glad to know that you, the unidentified teched58, have the credentials and permission to speak to for "objective types," engineers, and "engineering types." I won't dare ask what an engineering type is, let alone if all qualified engineers (including recording engineers) are so-called "objectivists." (I say "so-called" because I reject this either/or objective /subjective divide as an artificial categorization that sets up sides in an endless and endlessly polarizing debate that, if nothing else, supplies people with endless reasons to post comments.) Nor will I ask if you think all of us at Stereophile are alike.

As for screaming, was I screaming?

Okay, I'm outa here. Life is too short. As the Church Lady used to say on SNL, discuss amongst yourselves.

funambulistic's picture

Jason - that was "Coffee Talk" with Linda Richman (Mike Myers) not the Church Lady (Dana Carvey). Just sayin' (and definitely not screaming!).

Now back to our regularly scheduled Obj/Subj discourse...

Jason Victor Serinus's picture

I realize that I have just lost credibility with millions upon millions of SNL lovers worldwide. Mea maxima culpa. Chalk it up to not owning a TV. Lame excuse. GUILTY GUILTY GUILTY as charged. But wait, was I formally charged? Perhaps I'm being too subjective....

teched58's picture

> JVS wrote "Nor will I ask if you think all of us at Stereophile are alike."

No, I don't think you're all alike. Kal Rubinson, for example, is Professor Emeritus of Neuroscience and Physiology at New York University School of Medicine.

Jim Austin has a doctorate in physics.

John Atkinson has deep experience measuring audio components.

I apologize in advance if I've missed anyone.

JHL's picture

...on that remark, it'd be useful for better sound if at some point you or anyone would articulate specific, meaningful differences between engineer, designer, reviewer (especially at this level) and lay user. They have to be fleshed out or your ostensibly related points are academic.

I say this because a) corollaries among device and sound are naturally nonlinear in a field of this size, and b) one of the more dismal pursuits, one enabled and prompted by purely objectivist outlets, is that where engineers and their public take views on things they haven't used or heard - this being audio - we get minutiae-burrowing and precious little more.

From there it's a short step to ranking on faulty grounds, again without knowing the overall design or its sound, which actually retards the progress of better sounding systems. Objectivism is too subjective.

By non-linear I mean the gulf between truly better-sounding gear and their limited measurements, multiplied by how this vastness filters through tiers of interested parties, multiplied by how it sorts into complex, interconnected systems. I don't think there's a valid complaint from the engineering side, save for obvious nits in the observable technical makeup of a particular thing, until there's a hierarchy connecting phenomena to sound.

As for the economics, they'll flow to some degree from this structure. Fortunately, my concern begins and ends with my pocketbook so I'd not bother remarking on anyone else's because that would be petty.

Speaking of petty, retail reviewing versus wholesale reviewing is a canard. I'd certainly hope a reviewer broadens his field of view based on *access* to gear in it. If a maker sends a piece *free of charge* for review, surely that's about as pure and direct a flow of critical contact and information and hence sound as any, and one in my view significantly more valid than the barrages of marketing-speak and enormous retail overheads that accompany crap audio, of which there is no end.

If you want to level a charge per the credibility of a reviewer or his publication, have at it. Or maybe just stop reading them and spare the onerous overtones. More direct and efficient.

Glotz's picture

Teched58 just went off on readers of the magazine that concur with JVS or any other writer here as 'Groupies", however outdated and utterly extinct that phrase or the behavior in this generation.

Claiming you are this or that, or implying that the engineers here, Jim Austin, aren't real engineers.

I would rather claim that you have never been an audio engineer, and yet you believe that you still have expertise in this area of discussion.

Bloviated trolling, linguistic vaporware is more fitting.

Minutiae-burrowing indeed.

When you give respect, you get. Most here haven't figured out that most basic of tenets of life.

SteveR1's picture

As I said above.

johnnythunder1's picture

and magnified its relevance by at least 10,000,000x, we still wouldn't give 2 sh-ts about it.

Glotz's picture

Respect gets when it gives.

ChrisS's picture

...can't stand anything they can't afford.

supamark's picture

Now add in the cost of 4 channels of amplification, a streaming DAC that includes an analog preamp input (with an ADC), volume control, some sort of room (and individual driver) correction, and a digital crossover with four line outs for the four channels of amplification. Now we're getting closer to an apples to apples comparison. Not there, but much closer.

So, as a troll attempt I give you a 2/10 because it was so lazy and transparently bad. I did give you a point for getting several responses though you really aren't anywhere near as clever as you think.

Mark Phillips,
Contributor, Soundstage! Network

David Harper's picture

The Elac speakers which I mentioned in my post are not my only speakers. I also have Magnepan LRS speakers.

JHL's picture

...you'll never hear sound like this, and if you happen to fall into it by some twist of fate one night you won't know what to do with it.

Except project dysfunction onto those who have heard it and who know it.


Now multiply that sound and its effect by a thousand events. The salient question for your kind is simply, how many others have to be wrong for you to be right?

Jason Victor Serinus's picture

When I conducted listening tests, I assumed that because I was receiving signal wirelessly, the power supply to my second mesh router wouldn't make a difference. Hence, I used the its switch-mode wall wart.

Months later, self said to self, "Serinus, you're using an HDPlex 300 to power the Roon Nucleus+. It has another output that will work with your router, and you have an extra Ghent umbilical cord (Canare) to use with it. Why not give it a try?"

I have. Boy, has it made a difference. The sound is even smoother, warmer, and natural. I haven't heard the Genelecs - I'd love to try them in my living room - but I do know the sound of live music. Hey, in the past week, I've been to the Seattle Symphony (in row 8, in the aisle seat of orchestra central), and farther back in Meany Hall for the Takacs String Quartet (where sound is far less vibrant). These active speakers are remarkably good. Their sound is natural and convincing. I love their sound, especially when they're wired to their wireless source and each other. But they sound excellent in all configurations. They have their limitations, especially at higher volumes. But I've never heard them distort.

Moral of the story (if a moral you must have): Pay careful attention to associated components. The better it is, the better these babies will sound. As for attention to positioning, there you can breathe easier because their DSP works.


cognoscente's picture

I have not read the above comments. I've never been impressed by the "Dynaudio" sound myself. That is of course subjective, others swear by it. Anyway, who is this speaker for? I think especially for someone who is not a so-called audiophile, but someone who wants this "just" good sound without too much fuss, in other words as few devices as possible. So only speakers, less is not possible anyway (of course this is not only a speaker but a complete set packed in a speaker, you have to judge the sound as a complete set for this price and not just as only speaker) I have many friends like this. And who, despite not being audiophile, are willing to pay for a better sound however there are cheaper and also good active speakers on the market. A real audiophiles, like me, still swear to have every component, storage (or streaming), conversion, amplification and reproduction, in separate devices and interconnected with (thick) cables. Less is more but sometimes more is better, like with audio equipment.

Glotz's picture

Remind anyone with ears that their company has incredible engineers and designers. I really don't hear how anyone could poo-poo their expertise in that range.

That being said, I could see how many might find their more budget-minded offerings on the other end of the scale would half of listeners might find them analytically-balanced, or pointed towards accuracy vs. musicality.

Their design choices are valid imo. Whether they mesh with my tastes of sound is immaterial. There are those in the market that have enabled this company to flourish for many years.

I still need to read this month's review, though I am sure JVS did a fine job. And I'm sure that these speakers are worth every penny too...

Jason Victor Serinus's picture

you will discover that I have addressed this accuracy vs. musicality characterization head on.

It's amazing how certain critical comments take on a life of their own. "Cables should cost no more than 10% of your other components," "Wilson speakers aren't emotional," and "Dynaudio speakers are accurate but non-engaging." I recall a similar criticism about mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter; people claimed that she had a wonderful voice but was not emotionally expressive. In all these cases, all one has to do is listen to discover that these criticisms don't hold water. They are linguistic vaporware.

Glotz's picture

LOl.. love that phrase.


Lol.. couldn't resist.

JRT's picture

Dynaudio's $1.7k/pair Evoke 10 seems to be a similar size monitor with similar drivers, but with a passive crossover, lacking the amplifiers, lacking the digital inputs, and lacking the beneficial digital signal processing. For example the passive version lacks the protection from over-excursion of the small midwoofer provided by the DSP filtered dynamic pole shifting in the acoustic high pass response (poles and zeros in the S-plane).

I would have liked to have seen Dynaudio provide a pair of the passives to JVS to enable a comparison.

Jason Victor Serinus's picture

Many of us want many things. My list is equally long. However, I am not equipped to review other speakers in the music room, and I have no spare amplifier to use with passives in the living room. Nor would adding an unknown amplifier to the equation make much sense, in that I wouldn't know what was responsible for what. Finally, given set-up constraints, putting the Evoke 10s in the same position as the Focus 10s would not produce good sound given speaker proximity to the front wall and corner. Best, instead, to focus solely on an active pair in which every component has been chosen to produce the sound Dynaudio wants you to hear.

cognoscente's picture

indeed, a direct comparison with the Dynaudio's Evoke 10 passive, or 20, in combination with Marantz 40n or Hegel H120 or comparable streamer/dac/amplifier would be of use to us as a reader

rduppen's picture

Thanks for this elaborate review. I own the Focus 10s and I am very happy with them. One thing that bugs me though is that I need to choose between using Dirac Live or an external subwoofer. You mention a future firmware update is on its way to address this. To date the latest version is still 1.2.880xb3ed1c3. Hopefully an update is coming soon.