Hard on the heels of yesterdays excitement regarding us finally getting the keys to our potential new Signals Towers (and me barely sleeping for some unaccountable reason), a morning drive into deepest hert-bed-hert-fordshire was not quite the appealing prospect that it should have been.
Pleased to say that PMC made it all OK! Spending the day with a strange and eclectic bunch of moderately weird people (HiFi dealers and PMC staff) turned out to be a fantastic tonic for my excessive mental ruminating. I should say that the rather lovely female staff who appeared to actually make everything work like clockwork were not in any way strange, odd or weird.
Anyway, today was about celebrating 25 years of PMC being in business. The new twenty5 series was demonstrated in the afternoon after we were given an illuminating talk on the history of the company and of the technology used to develop the new range. The chunky speakers photographed above are the very first ones to be made by PMC, incidentally.
After a most excellent lunch, accessed via a journey in very wide coach driving along some very narrow roads, we were settled in for the main event. As it happens, we already have our demo twenty5 21 and 23 speakers, so we know how good they are. It was nevertheless brilliant to sit there while someone else swapped things over so that we could compare and contrast.
First thing to understand is that the twenty series is not ceasing production. Whilst stocks last, the existing veneer finishes are available, but the price has fallen by roughly 10%. Once the existing finishes have been exhausted, they will remain available, but only in a black stained wood veneer. The twenty5 series is a little more expensive than the twenties were, so there is a proper model range price step between them. What was incredibly obvious was that the level of improvement more than justifies the extra cost.
Whilst the twenty5 models look superficially similar to the twenty range, every single aspect, with the apparent exception of the screws used to fix the tweeters, is different. Sonically, they are cleaner, bolder, deeper, more colourful and more dynamic. More to the point the differences are wholly musical ones. It’s quite a remarkable shift.
The new Laminair grille visible in the ports is apparently a large part of the story and not just a funky trim. With PMC using a new and much longer through bass driver (still their own design and with their own cone material) it meant that real gains were to be made by speeding up the flow of air in and out of the transmission line port. Reducing turbulence, in exactly the same way are aerodynamic diffusers do for formula one cars, has impacted on air flow such that the speaker becomes more efficient, much clearer and is subjectively ‘faster’. The bass maintains level far deeper yet none of the existing positives of the immensely popular twenty series have been sacrificed.
Best to let your own ears decide, so feel free to book a session.
Many thanks to Peter Thomas and his rather fine team at PMC. Happy anniversary!