Gayle Sanders Eikon & DSP Optimization

MartinLogan co-founder Gayle Sanders emerged from retirement at the 2018 AXPONA with a new loudspeaker brand, Eikon. But Eikon is not just a loudspeaker but a complete system ($25,000 in standard finish or $30,000 in the carbon-fiber finish shown in my photo), with DAC, preamplifier, and digital signal processor incorporated into the Eikontrol unit, which has both analog inputs and digital (USB and S/PDIF but PCM only) inputs, and each of the speaker’s drive-units has its own amplifier.

The speaker has two woofers, one on the front, the other on the back, as well as a 5″ midrange unit and AMT tweeter mounted close together at the top of the enclosure. Significantly, the Eikon system uses wavelet-based analysis to optimize its performance in the owner’s room. Two measurements are taken for each speaker, the results analyzed in the cloud, then the appropriate correction filter coefficients are downloaded to the control unit’s DSP engine. I consider the Eikon approach a portent of what will become standard in speaker system design in the next decade.

With the source an Aurender N10 server, I listened to a piece for violin and piano, then Leonard Cohen’s “Alexandra Leaving,” and on both tracks, the Eikon system sounded clean with superb stereo imaging, and tight, extended low frequencies—this despite a non-friendly room acoustic.

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