A speaker brand new to me, Kroma Atelier from Spain, caught many an eye and ear with the US premiere of their small black Mimi Xtreme standmount loudspeaker ($12,600/pair in white, $13,860 in black, left in photo) with Mimi stands ($3600/pair). Introduced by Tim Lukas’s Matterhorn Audio Group of Boston, whose other brands include FinkTeam and Creek, the speaker is claimed to work with amps that output as little as 15Wpc. With a 6.5″ midrange with proprietary cone, and a special AMT neodymium-ribbon tweeter designed by Mundorf to Kroma Atelier’s specifications, the speaker boasts a 4 ohm nominal impedance, an 88dB sensitivity, and a frequency response of 30Hz25kHz. The design of its woofer’s surround (below) is intentionalit is possibly one the new Purifi drive-units.
Using wireless streaming, the speakers threw a thrillingly wide soundstage on that oft-heard Tchaikovsky blockbuster from Reference Recordings, the overture from Mazeppa. The speaker’s bass extension and weight was truly impressive, and the highs were exciting, lively, but perfectly controlled. When we played the CD layer of Iván Fischer’s recording of Mahler Symphony No.3, the soundstage was again wide and deep, the reach low, and the highs lovely in the best possible way. Color me extremely impressed.
I didn’t audition the Julieta ($42,950/pair) or Norma (starting at $78,960/pair) loudspeakers, but I did enjoy the Creek Audio Voyage CD player ($3495), Linn Klimax DSM Organik streamer ($39,000), and excellent Viola Audio Labs Cadence power amp ($35,000) and Sonata preamp ($33,800). Also heard: Ansuz Acoustics cables and accessories, Hi Diamond cabling, Lucidum rack, and PSI Audio AVAA C20 absorber. Worth checking out.
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