Dynaudio Evidence Temptation loudspeaker Page 4

However, I must add that the sweet spot—where the depth and width of the soundstage was almost palpable—was in the nearfield. If I sat in just the right place, Stevie Nicks singing "Rhiannon" (from The Dance) became a three-dimensional being. I could close my eyes and imagine just where she was standing and the space around her—as long as my head was in the right spot. I could be wrong, but I recall that the Evidence Masters' sweet spot was larger in the nearfield, but accessible in both the nearfield and farfield.

The Temptation's sweet spot enlarged considerably when it was used in a multichannel system driven by the Sony SCD-C555ES SACD player and TA-P9000ES multichannel analog preamplifier. The speakers brought out the best of the SCD-C555ES's natural, liquid midrange, the tight midrange-bass, and the effortless, wide-open dynamic range. The ambience of the Trinity College Chapel in Hartford, Connecticut was so real that, listening to "Ubi Caritas" from DMP's Sacred Feast (SACD-09), I was there. I particularly enjoyed sensing the space of the hall, the resolution of different vocal textures in the 31-member chorus (Gaudeamus, conducted by Paul Halley), the layering of voices, the clarity of the reverberation, and the intense reproduction of the bass. The chorus was placed solidly in front, with ample but natural reverberation in the surrounds.

Just before the speakers were picked up by Dynaudio's Mike Manousselis and Al Filipelli, to be transported to JA's lab for testing, I put on a new recording of the 16-member Venice Baroque Orchestra playing Vivaldi's The Four Seasons (Sony Classical SK 51352). I had just heard this group at their American debut concert in Alice Tully Hall the night before, and had been awestruck by the speed, dynamics, technical brilliance, and warm tone of the violin soloist, Giuliano Carmignola.

After I've heard a live performance, my system often sounds pretty pale. Not this time. Listening to the last movement of Winter on the Venice Baroque CD, I immediately recognized the warm, rough timbre of Carmignola's 17th-century Italian violin, his blazing speed, the tonal underpinnings of Tobias Lindner's pipe organ, and the light, clear notes of Ivano Zanenghi's lute.

After several months of ecstatic listening, I'm here to report that the Dynaudio Evidence Temptation loudspeaker is a superb sequel to the much more expensive Evidence Master. It enjoys the Master's superb fit'n'finish, fabulous pitch definition and impact in the lowest frequencies, wide soundstage, freedom from treble grain, and transparent top end, all while seeming to disappear as the apparent source of the sound. This places the Temptation in the top rank of loudspeakers.

But, like any sequel, the Temptations differed from the original. Their sweet spot was smaller, their soundstage imaging more readily apparent in the nearfield than the farfield, they were less sensitive, and didn't go quite as deep in the bass. On the plus side, their smaller size works better in small rooms than the Evidence Master. At 84% of the Master's weight and 35% of its cost, the Temptation will fit a few more living rooms and budgets. However, it remains an expensive investment, even for high-end audio.

Each person will have to judge whether the Evidence Temptation's state-of-the-art sound is worth the price of admission. But whatever you conclude, I strongly recommend that you at least audition this loudspeaker. Then you can decide whether you agree with me that this sequel is as good as the original.

1144 Tower Lane
Bensenville, IL 60106
(630) 238-4200