Not just any speakers mind you, but a line of audio reproducers that would showcase what the company could do if no restraints were placed upon them. Well the new Persona line of speakers is the culmination of Paradigm’s efforts, and I have been graced with the stunning looking Persona 7F floorstanding speaker to examine and review for you.
The Persona 7F is the second from top-of-the-line model in the series. It is a passive loudspeaker design whereas the top-dog Persona 9H features an active bass section and integrated ARC room correction, included as part of the package. Besides being an absolutely gorgeous looking design, the 144-pound (each) Persona 7F are some of the most solidly constructed and inert speakers that I have come across. The enclosures are made from seven layers of HDF combined with a viscoelastic adhesive which are held together in a custom-made press for five days to shape, bond and cure. The 1-inch tweeter and 7-inch midrange drivers have a dome and cone made from pure beryllium processed and manufactured with a proprietary process called Truextent that reserved especially for acoustic applications.
It is manufactured exclusively by a company based in California called Materion, and it is this company that supplies Paradigm with its custom beryllium components. Beryllium tweeters are being heard about more and more in higher end audio, but this is the first time that I have come across a midrange driver whose cone is made completely of the same stuff. An interesting little “tech-brief” about the benefits of beryllium in audio driver applications can be found here on Materion’s website.
The tweeter and midrange drivers also feature an integrated cover, perforated with a specific geometric pattern. These covers act as “acoustic lenses” that filter out-of-phase information and smooth out the respective driver’s response. The bass duties are handled by two 8.5-inch, high excursion aluminum drivers that feature dual voice-coils and the same over-molded Active Ridge Technology surrounds that are found in Paradigm’s subwoofer drivers.
The Persona 7F have a claimed frequency response of 24Hz to 45kHz +/- 2dB, a sensitivity of 92dB (in room) and an 8 Ohm impedance rating, thus making them both capable and easy to drive. At a suggested MSRP of $25,000.00 for the pair, they are a little less-efficient on the pocketbook but, tis the price one pays for perfection. Perfection that is designed, developed and completely manufactured out of Paradigm’s Toronto-area facility. For good or for ill, I intend to savor these because “perfection” demands it. Of course, I jest, well…. sort of!
Initial impressions are that the Persona 7F have an exceptionally clean and clear midrange and upper-end response combined with a punchy and solid sounding bottom end. Usually when I come across a such a finely resolving pair of speakers they tend be rather unforgiving of recordings that aren’t equally as exceptional. I have not found that to be the case with the Personas…. yet. A most interesting and satisfying conundrum so far.
Look for a complete review with measurements on our website in the near future.