Product review: Monitor Audio Radius range

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Having stocked Monitor Audio’s critically acclaimed Bronze range of speakers and now the even more impressive Silver range, the new Radius range is perfect for those seeking an impressive home cinema package without the epic size to deal with.

My first impression of the Radius range actually came from hearing their smaller Radius 90 speakers through a mini-system (Sony MAPS1) and they sounded brilliant. For such a small speaker they have a remarkable range and sound quality; they sang happily when we played some Jamiroquai through them and were equally happy with a Bluetooth version of the Moonlight Sonata.

Monitor Audio Radius R90HT1The range is meant, however, as a proper surround sound package with centre speakers, subwoofers, and even passive soundbars to assist in giving you a great home cinema experience. The system package was awarded a 5-star review from What Hi-Fi? and even given the prestigious “Best Style Package £1400-£1800” award back in 2014, so they were highly decorated already by the time we managed to get them. They look fantastic in every finish available including gloss black, gloss white and a very stylish walnut as well. The cabinets are well made, very sturdy and come loaded with Monitor Audio’s C-Cam tweeters equipped to provide excellent detail in the treble range as well as marrying that with a C-Cam woofer to give excellent crossover capabilities and a smooth low end and mid range.

If you are short on space then both Monitor Audio’s floorstander and centre speaker options are thinner than almost any other style of speakers as well. Boasting a depth of only 67mm, the Radius 225 centre speaker really will integrate well into any room aesthetic and the floorstanders are a mere 177mm deep. Quite amazing given the sound that they produce.

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The stylish Radius 225 centre speaker

The first thing to look into when thinking about this system would be a good amp to hook them up to so I would suggest that you get one with a decent power rating (around 80-100w per channel), but that has a great control over how the frequencies are distributed. Our first choice was an RXA range amplifier from Yamaha, renowned for its great musical capabilities as well as great sound depth. Once we had hooked up two sets of the Radius 90’s, the 200 centre speaker and the Radius 390 subwoofer, it was clear just how good this package was going to sound. From the moment we switched on a Blu-ray copy of Star Wars – The Force Awakens, the orchestral majesty of John Williams was given new life through this system and it certainly turned a few heads. The subwoofer is exceptionally punchy for its size and works wonderfully to compliment the accurate detail in the treble range that the smaller satellite style Radius 90’s can provide.

We ran in the system for a few days and came back to hear it again and it seemed to only get better. Any harshness from the treble had gone leaving a warmer mid range and a desire to try it with some music instead. Out comes the Blu-ray and in went our copy of Coldplay’s Rush of Blood to the Head. Whilst not exactly a testing album for speakers, it does have quite a range in some of the songs and to get Chris Martin’s vocals right can be quite tricky for some lesser speakers, but not in this case. The jingle of Clocks resonated brightly and brilliantly whilst the rolling bassline in The Scientist was punchy and proud in the mix. Flipping across to some more rock tunes in AC/DC, these little marvels continued to surprise us, showing equal capability in hitting crunchy guitar riffs and scrappy vocals from Brian Johnson. Hells Bells literally rang through the store despite being set up in our demo room, but were contained perfectly to our store and didn’t leak to the outside world, solidifying what we had read about these speakers being more suited to smaller rooms.

The floorstanders were impressive in a single word. Whilst they don’t quite have the range of the new Silver range, or the striking beauty, we were very impressed by how good the soundstage was on all of the above formats. Even running in 2 channel stereo, the subwoofer only seemed to kick in when needed after a minor calibration thanks to the low range these speakers can reach.

We are now very fond of the Radius range here at the store and implore many of our customers seeking such systems to hear it before they make any decisions on a new setup.

If you are looking for a discreet speaker system that has plenty of passion inside, these might be worth a demo to partner your new layout – pop into your local store to arrange a test drive!

To find out more about the Monitor Audio Radius Range, click here.

Author: Andrew, Eton store