Fidelis Distribution/Heretic Loudspeakers Co./Lab 12/CEC/ArgentPur

Fidelis Distribution and Heretic Loudspeakers Co. brought their high-sensitivity Heretic AD612 loudspeakers ($9290/pair) to CAF, paired with CEC and Lab 12 equipment.

Designer Robert Gaboury's Canadian-made The Heretic AD612 is a two-way, ductless, high-sensitivity, point-source coaxial monitor rated at 97dB/2.83Vm into 8 ohms, made of FSC 12-ply, birch plywood construction. Its 303 Heretic coaxial transducer contains a 12" high-power, low-frequency transducer, a 1" coaxial compression driver, and a short exponential horn. Crossover is a 2nd-order, serial type Linkwitz-Riley with Air Core Solen inductors and Mundorf capacitors. The large, tubby cabinet stands 30.25" high, 25.5" wide, and 17.75" deep and weighs 68lb. Finishes include water-based 100% acrylic black and semi-transparent linseed oil/bee's wax. And a 10-year warranty!

"Most loudspeakers have a circuit called 'Baffle Step Compensation filter,' states the Heretic website, "to compensate the acoustic effect created by narrow enclosures, that boosts low frequencies. Heretic speakers do not have this circuit and rely on the 'broad shoulders' of the enclosure, acting as a launch pad for low frequencies. Therefore, it is advisable to place Heretic speakers against the wall and benefit from the reinforcement offered by your natural room acoustics."

Using Italian drivers made to his specs, Gaboury said the Heretic AD612 is modeled after Altec's classic 612 cabinet. Heretic's press materials show George Martin and Ringo Starr next to a 612 cabinet at Abbey Road Studios in the early 1960s.

A CEC TL5 belt-drive transport ($2390) and CEC DA5 DAC ($2290) handled source, while a class-A, tubed, dual-mono Lab 12 Pre 1 preamplifier ($2190), and class-A, tubed, SET, EL34, 10Wpc stereo power Lab 12 Mighty stereo power amplifier ($2290) drove the system. Ampsandsound amps were on static display. The cables were by a new company, ArgentPur (, including the AgPur 13 speaker cables. Handmade in the Boston Area.

Playing a CD sampler, The Absolute Sound Reference (For Hifi Show And At Home)—Vol.2, the sound was very full and natural, relaxed and dynamic. I'd love to hear these in my home system.

mcsnare's picture

I visited this room with the Lab 12 running the Heretic speakers and it may have been one of the worst systems I've ever heard, period. By Sunday, a pair of Ampsandsound Bryce Monos were powering the speakers. The transformation was astonishing. Almost unbelievable. It went from unlistenable to very enjoyable. If you thought it sounded good with the Lab 12 amp, you've destroyed any credibility you might have had. I own some Lab 12 gear so it's not like I think the brand sucks, in fact it's usually excellent. But not in this room.