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This review first appeared in the September 2013 issue of hi-end hifi magazine of Germany. You can also read this review of the
Elac FS 507 VX-JET in its original German version. We publish its English translation in a mutual syndication arrangement with the publishers. As is customary for our own reviews, the writer's signature at review's end shows an e-mail address should you have questions or wish to send feedback. All images contained in this review are the property of fairaudio or Teufel - Ed.

Reviewer: Jochen Reinecke
Sources: 160GB iPod Classic 5 with Pure i-20 dock , Pro-Ject Xpression III with Ortofon OM 30 Super, Audiolab 8200CDQ , Musical Fidelity M6 DAC
Amplification: Audiolab 8200CDQ and Dynavox TPR-2 preamps, Trends Audio TA-10.2 SE and Yarland FV-34C III integrateds, Abacus Ampollo power amp
Loudspeakers: Neat Momentum 4i monitor, Nubert nuBox 101 with AW 441 Subwoofer, F120A wideband DIY transmission line
Cabling: Goldkabel Profi interconnects, Ortofon SPK 500 and Real Cable OFC 400 speaker cables
Review component price: €9.980/pr

"Oy, my lower back." 'twas my first though when the shipper dropped forebodingly big Elac cartons in front of my digs and high-tailed it outa there with a smug grin. Nope, he wouldn't stay to help, not even for a tip. Fortunately the high-mass impression was an illusion. Elac are very careful with over-dimensioned packaging and most generous styrofoam padding. Commendable! In the end my friendly neighbor (gracias and hello Thomas) helped with the schlep up to my second storey. And it was easier than anticipated. Each specimen of boxed Elac FS 507 VX-JET weighs 37kg on the dot but it's worth the effort. Once peeled out, first impressions were two thumbs way up.

This is a very attractive piece of sonic furniture. A good 120cm tall, quite narrow at 20cm wide, 41cm deep. Perfectly done high-gloss black. The unavoidable association with a concert piano is next. Then comes the special quasi double-decker floor coupling. The speaker hovers above its plinth with four short columns. Four adjustable spikes with plastic floor protectors couple that to terra firma. The rationale is obvious once we figure out that the bass reflex port fires down. A reflective smooth hard surface at a fixed distance avoids variables like deep-pile carpets vs. parquet flooring. Such a port orientation in general also helps to avoid unpredictable interactions with the main wall or objects behind the speaker.

But that's the least of the conceptual specials on this menu. The highlight must be the X-JET, a coaxial driver which for the 500 Series gains a 'V' prefix for variable alignment. That's because the entire unit can move seamlessly by ±4mm fore and aft relative to the front baffle. Lest you get smart and invoke time alignment, that's not the rationale here. The low transition frequency wouldn't matter much. As per designer Rolf Janke, the goal is adaptable dispersion in the mid/treble range. A wheel adjuster on the back makes it so.

Why? If you listen in a room with many hard surfaces, you tend to suffer a more reflective sonic mix particularly if you add an early and hot tweeter. Now it makes sense to retract that driver. If the room is too absorptive, the sound can dull and image precision with it. Moving the driver forward will improve staging. In short, with a few turns the at-ear mix of direct and reflected sound in the upper registers is adaptable to personal preference and/or room conditions.

The bass and lower mid registers are served up by dual 180mm woofers in aluminum baskets and with the firm's trademark 'crystal membrane'. The overall driver math works out to a 3.5-way array where the lower woofer fades out at 180Hz whilst the upper one meets the coax at 550Hz. The handover between ring-shaped mid and pleated Heil-derivative tweeter occurs at 2.700Hz. For its four-board xover Elac relies on boutique foil caps and air-core coils whilst vertical and upright bracing divides the interior into nine chambers to give each driver and filter sufficient private space to work in undisturbed.