Product review: DALI SPEKTOR 2 Speakers

Fresh from winning a 2017 Best Buy award from What Hi-Fi?, DALI’s new SPEKTOR 2 standmount speakers are now gracing the shelves at all Richer Sounds stores across the country.

Joining the immensely popular ZENSOR and OPTICON ranges, the SPEKTOR range is the company’s latest entry level offering. Featuring two standmounts, a floorstander and a centre speaker, the SPEKTORs are available in either Black Ash or Walnut finishes and also available as a 5.1 speaker package with the E9F subwoofer.

The SPEKTOR 2 doesn’t aim to reinvent the wheel with its aesthetics when we take it out of the box, but its traditional rectangular cabinet design is built solidly and finished with care. The grilles aren’t magnetic but are tapered in at the edges so that they meet flush with the cabinet and on the rear you’ll find a single pair of terminals that snugly fit the banana plugs on the end of our Chord Rumour 2 cables. Under the grilles, there’s a pleasing ringed design around the 25mm dome tweeter to add a little style, as well as the 13cm familiar red cork main driver that is a signature design touch exclusive to all DALI speakers.

We decided to hook the speakers up to our Cambridge Audio CXA60 with matching CXC CD transport and kick things off with the late, great Chris Cornell’s “Worried Moon”. The guitar intro soon joins with the percussive rhythm section and makes for a well-oiled presentation to start off with. There’s enough attack for the guitar and various shakers and percussion to be clearly defined but without straying into the territory of brash harshness – the midrange of the percussion is especially well seated in the mix. Whilst not being massive in size by standmount terms, they aren’t particularly small either, which means there’s a healthy amount of bass available. Again, there’s a comfortable amount on offer without overpowering the rest of the frequency range and it’s relatively tight and controlled performance. Bass lines and kick drums cut through with ease and have a nice weight and heft without becoming fuzzy or ill-defined. Finlay Quaye’s “Even After All” is a great example of how the SPEKTORs are capable of providing the sparkly mid to high end of the snappy snare drum and subtle guitar whilst controlling the soft sound of the bass guitar on the track.

Compared against similar products at this price point, you’ll find a touch more cohesiveness in the spread of instruments and a more controlled midrange and where the SPEKTORs lack the x-factor of design and finish, they make up for it with how they sonically knit everything together. The extra snappiness at the top end of the frequency range adds a bit of shine to whatever you’re listening to and typical midrange instruments like guitars sound more controlled than on other speakers. They’ll need a proper bit of amplification to drive them as they’re not the most sensitive speakers (we noticed that we had to turn them up more than the some of the other speakers when doing an A/B comparison), but providing you have something with a bit of oomph to power them, they shouldn’t struggle.

DALI hasn’t made massive leaps in terms of looks but they’re ticking all the boxes when it comes to what counts. Why not take a trip down to your local Richer Sounds and give them a whirl with your favourite tracks?

Click to find out more about the Dali Spektor 2 speakers.

Author: Steve, Bristol store