I recently had the opportunity to set up my own gear and listen to a Genesis 201 Loudspeaker System on display at a local hi-fi shop. These speakers are unusual in that they place the low-range drivers into their own cabinet, relegating the midrange drivers and ribbon tweeters to a separate enclosure. The woofers are powered by their own custom Genesis amplifier. I employed my own source and DAC, with Genesis-branded pre- and power-amps. Since these speakers are no longer available, this is not a review but just my thoughts on listening to them and my experience overall.

Genesis 201 Loudspeaker System

GENESIS LOUDSPEAKER SYSTEM TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS
Frequency Response:

16Hz to 40kHz, +/- 3dB

Sensitivity:

90dB 1 watt / 1 meter

Tube Power:

500w max, 60w min

Solid State Power:

1000w max, 100w min

Input Impedance:

4 ohms (nominal)

HF Transducers:

15 x 1″ circular ribbon (12 front, 3 rear)

Midrange Transducers:

1 x 48″ ribbon

LF Transducers:

8 x 8″ ribbed-aluminum cone

Loudspeaker Controls:

Rear Tweeters (+/- 1 dB)

Upper Midrange contour:

+/- 0.75 dB

Servo-controlled Bass Amplifier Control Module:

Gain, Low Pass, High Pass, Phase

Quartet Servo-Amplifier Module:

500W x 2

Forte Servo-Bass Amplifier:

500W x 2

Dimensions:

Mid/Tweeter Panel: H 75″ x W 21″ x D 16″
Woofer Tower: H 75″ x W 15″ x D 26″
Servo-bass Amplifier Modules (each): H 3″ x W 17″ x D 13″
System Total Weight: 720lbs each

Gear Used
    Alienware 17 Laptop
    AudioQuest Cinnamon USB Interconnect
    Schiit Modi 2 DAC
    Bryston BP17 Preamplifier
    Bryston 14B3 Driving the tweeter/mid-range towers
    Genesis Amp 4×400 Driving the woofer towers
    Room size – 13×17 with custom acoustic treatment

Genesis 201 Loudspeaker System Midrange Drivers

First Impressions

Just simply walking into the room, I’m amazed at the sheer size of these speakers. I am six feet tall and the 201s tower over me. The number of drivers in each speaker was a sight to behold, they seemed to have endless potential for sound. They require bi-amplification to ensure they have enough power while the woofer towers are driven by their own Genesis power amplifier.

Genesis 201 Loudspeaker System Tweeter Cabinet

Listening

Breaking Benjamin Ashes of Eden is one of my favorite songs for speaker auditions. The music feels as if it’s slipping away into space as you listen. Mids and lows balanced perfectly with the high range as it neared the two-minute mark. I really loved the amount of space this song filled as the speakers pushed beyond what I thought possible.

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Our Last Night Skyfall Cover has some of the best male vocals I’ve heard, while also having some low punchy bass to keep the tone of song. Soundstage and imaging was simply amazing. Clear and crisp vocals really shone through and revealed things I’ve never heard before. I probably listened to this song over a dozen times.

PVRIS My House features electronic bass and female vocals as highlights. The speakers kept things tight and smooth, while also allowing the music to creep around the room. The chorus can feel crowded at times but the speakers managed to pull it apart like never before. Endless bass was a term that kept coming to mind as I listened.

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Other thoughts

CThe fit and finish on these speakers is good, but for the price the 201s cost new, I would have preferred to see a real wood finish rather than veneer. That would make them really sparkle in a listening room. I really enjoyed my time with these amazing speakers. If you ever get the chance to hear the Genesis 201 Loudspeaker System, give it a shot, you will be wowed!

Genesis 201 Loudspeaker System

  • stereo_ron

    Nowhere did you say the cost of this speaker system, you only complained that given the cost it should be real wood not a veneer. Real wood might look better, but would most likely sound worse.

  • Indiana Lang

    The dealer I demo’d these speakers at had them listed at $60k. I think if these speakers are taking up so much space in nearly any room they are placed in, they should look and sound equally amazing. Curious, what are you thoughts on these speakers?

  • Kevin Turpin

    I’ve always wanted to hear this system as well. Highly regarded as one of the greatest speaker systems ever made back in the day when Arnie Nudell wanted to design and build a no boundaries (price or size) speaker system from the first system, the Infinity IRS V. I wish you would have covered a little more about how this system was designed and who built it, what the original price was, when it was available, and more history about this amazing speaker system in general. To me, for such an amazing system this article seems a bit short.

  • John Johnson

    Veneer over MDF is used rather than solid wood because solid wood has cracks in the grain. This could affect the sound in a detrimental way. Solid wood also has its own resonance, specific to that wood, and the resonance might be detrimental, depending on the wood.

  • cough

    Of all music to play on a fine system, you pick breaking benjamin..