Operatic Opera Speakers

Somebody should do a study, categorizing the names of audio manufacturers. The most common approach is to name the company after the designer, or to use his initials. And then there are all those names that incorporate the word "audio," "sound," "music," and variations thereof. There are names that give no indication of the nature of the company's products, but are just memorable.

But consider the name "Opera Loudspeakers." It immediately tells you that the company making these speakers places a high priority on musical values, and that it's very likely to be Italian. (Of course, there are operas in many languages, but the word still conjures up Italian opera, and the word itself is means "work" in Italian.) It also suggests that the designer of the speakers is an opera fan, attracting customers that are of a similar mind, and is willing to take the chance that rap and hip hop fans will be turned off by the name of the speaker.

But ultimately it's what the speaker sounds like that's important (a speaker by any other name...), and in the case of the Opera Loudspeakers Quinta ($5495/pair), in a system featuring a Unison Research Unico 50 integrated amp ($4495/pair) and Unico CDE CD player ($3895), that was excellent. (My scribbled note says "very musical.") The Quinta uses new custom drivers from Scanspeak, in a stylish cabinet covered with leather in the front. The Opera and Unison Research brands are distributed in the US by a new company, Colleen Cardas Imports.