The new Soul Series amplifiers at the high-end HI FI show Heathrow, on the 24-26 September 2004, powering the latest speaker designs from Overkill Audio.

 

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Six Moons Review

 

 

The last remarkable room we visited became OverKill Audio’s. And we were lucky to have stumbled upon the best for last. Derek Wilson and his lovely wife Petra occupied a fairly large space and put together a musical feast that still is with us. They began with an Overkill Oasis multi-format player with a tubed output stage. From there the signal went through a DEQX active crossover slash room correction system slash D/A converter slash preamp.

Amplification was provided by two 30-watt Tube Distinctions Soul monoblocks for the 200Hz-and-down range. Another Tube Distinctions Soul amplifier, now a 15-watt stereo version, powered the Mangers. All cables were by Crystal Cable and the piece-de-resistance was OverKill Encore loudspeakers [6moons will review Overkill’s entire Encore-centered CES system for their debut in the US press – Ed].

 

What made this room so special? First off, it was the music played, not the standard female vocals! Next, it was the loudness, presented as a very decent though room-filling volume. Last but not least, of course, the loudspeakers, rather unique in their design. Derek learned a lot from his previous Ovation model in which he matched up a Talon Firebird bass system with the wonderful Manger driver. The world debut of the Encore then went one step further. The 96dB sensitive bass driver got its own cabinet built from multiple laminated layers for the utmost in chassis inertia. On top of the bass cabinet, the Manger unit finds its place in a very craftily done egg-shaped casting.

 

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The Manger driver is named after its German inventor, Herr Manger, and based on a full-range bending-wave model. Contrary to a conventional speaker membrane, a Manger membrane does not move entirely when producing a sound – only a portion of the membrane is vibrating. The best analogy? Throw a stone in a pond and watch only the outer ripples move. A great advantage of the Manger design is its almost full-range operation, hence the single 200Hz crossover frequency of the two-way Encore. And then there was just music for more than an hour after which only a good glass of champagne (or better yet, a glass of good champagne?) could top off this visit.