Popeck Peeking Around the Podium

Peeking out from the edge of this gigantic 14ft2 panel at the Roy Bird Show, veteran retailer and audio writer Howard Popeck has taken on this distribution of the Podium 1, and told me that its inventors and makers wished to remain anonymous. Further investigation unearthed the information that Paul Burton (responsible for the early-‘90s Sumo speaker and in part the Cyrus NXT-hybrid design) is involved, and close inspection suggests that a very large NXT panel lies at the core. The good news is that it's only around ½" deep around the edge (with a bulging rib, presumably covering the actuators, down the spine); it will cost a relatively modest £3000–4000/pair with a money-back-if-not-satisfied guarantee; and it delivers a sound with a very generous and convincing sense of scale. Bass might have been tauter (but the room was really much too small for such large panels), and imaging seemed a bit vague (as one might expect), but its ability to generate impressive dynamics was both intriguing and very persuasive indeed.

Jerry Jacobs's picture

A very impressive sound in a very impressive demonstration. HP (Howard Popeck, that is!) at his considerable best. Excellent transparency, detail & impact from these large panels. 2nd Best at Show after MBL, in my opinion. But, yes, imaging is the one area of concern. These need to be heard in a better environment for a proper evaluation. Much additional kudos to HP for his free handouts of a truly excellent CD of Bach's Goldberg Variations.

Matt Ewing's picture

easily the most impressive demo at (both) Heathrow shows - the experience stayed with me for days...the size is a tad much for euro housing..but who cares when it generates such a fab sound..

HP's picture

I attach some pictures of the first domestic use of Podium! The room measures about 7m x 4.5mm, and the speakers are driven with a Krell KSA100II and Kimber 8TC cable.The sound quality is quite astonishing! I have heard some impressive loudspeakers in my time, but the Podium is right up there with the best, or possibly *the* best. It is also pretty much the largest panel I have seen too - but that matters not one jot. The midrange and treble frequencies are as good as the best electrostatics or ribbons, and the bass extension has to be heard to be believed!That is most apparent, and truly scary on top quality, uncompressed full orchestral works like the Mercury Living Presence 1958 recording of the 1812, or the Chesky 1962 recording of Symphony Fantastique, and on the Eurhythmics track

Ulrich Ranke's picture

Dear Paul, this is Ulrich Ranke, head of Ceratec Deutschland gmbH. We would like to get contact to you. Would you please so kind to email us contact data's?Best regardsUlrich Ranke M.D. ranke@ceratec-deutschland.com