Amphion One18 - Pair by rhino666
It takes some time to get used to the unhyped sound of Amphion's One18, but once you adapt to their language, you get rewarded with a very clean, fast speaker with a deep sound and a very strong centre-image, which reveals subtle nuances in a mix in a very relaxed manner.
I spent the last week with testing One18's together with a matched amp (a prototype, also from Amphion).
Honestly, it took me quite a while to learn and appreciate their sound.
I was used to speakers with a hyped midrange, with a sound which is kinda "jumping at you", accentuated high mids
and an overall forward sound.
Opposed to that the One 18's behave very reserved, they are more like gentleman who do not need to impress anyone.
Now, after I got more used to their "language", I can say the longer I work with them, the more I like what I hear -
They are incredibly clean sounding, with a very fast transient response and where other speakers are just distorting,
they reveal the reason for it. They also have a truly impressive 3D image with great centre, they sound soft and musical,
while not hiding problems in the mix. With them I can hear for example rooms extremely well and they are so clean,
that I recognize the different colours of different eq's much better than with my other speakers.
When mixing they lead me quite elegant to a "less is more" approach. I found that I leave more signals untouched,
because the speakers are revealing how fast micro dynamics are destroyed, or signals are degraded, so I'm definitely much more careful
when using eq and compression. So there is a good chance that they will teach me to become a better mixer.
The only thing I would wish is a tiny little bit more midrange level, but Anssi wrote me that the next generation of One18’s, which has just been
launched, will do exactly that!
Of course also the amp plays an important role. I tried the One 18's with my 25 years old audiophile amp from GB (Lecson Stereo)
which introduced a bit more distortion than the Amphion-amp, but still it was miles ahead my old monitors, which now sound like distorted boom-boxes to me.
I shall add that Anssi from Amphion is extremely friendly and helpful, so it's also a pleasure to deal with them.