This review page is supported in part by the sponsors whose ad banners are displayed below

This review first appeared in the September 2013 issue of hi-end hifi magazine of Germany. You can also read this review of the
Teufel Definion 5 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: Ralph Werner
Sources: VPI Scout II, VPI JMW 9T, Denon DL-103, Ortofon MC Rondo Bronce, Zu Audio DL-103, SAC Gamma Sym, Luxman D-05, Logitech Touch, Readynas Duo NAS-Server, HP Notebook, M2Tech Hiface,
Benchmark DAC1 USB
Amplification: Octave HP300 with MC phono, Electrocompaniet AW180, Denon PMA-2010AE
Loudspeakers: Dynamikks Monitor 8.12, Thiel SCS4
Other: Creaktiv Trend 3 rack, fis Audio power delivery, Ascendo tri-wire loom, Dynamikks Speakerlink, Ecosse ES 2.3, Zu Audio Libtec, interconnects by Ecosse, Vovox, Mundorf Cable and others
Review component retail: €2.799/pr

Speaker house Teufel from Berlin has been around for more than 30 years to indubitably be an unusual success story. This evolved from speaker kit supplier of in-house parts during the 1980s to Europe's largest direct seller of turnkey speakers. One part of this success was due the then novel factory-direct model. The other core ingredient was the great energy whereby the folks from Berlin pursued home cinema - with such gusto in fact that snobster 'philes might shrug off the brand with "Teufel... what hifi products?" Of course they have those too. With the Ultima 800's rise in 2009 perfectly timed for their 30th anniversary, even diehard purists would have noticed. A further indicator on that evolutionary tangent was the takeover of audio streaming specialist Raumfeld a year later (we recently reported on the big Raumfeld networking box as a result of this merger).

By now it's 2013 and time for a new hifi line. This goes by Definion and its first model tartly dubbed 5 arrived chez fairaudio standing tall and proud with five drivers per side. It made for an impressively with-it first impression.

A second glance began to fret. No matter how hard one hones in on this 1.1m tower, a bass-reflex port is missing in action. Even the plinth doesn't hide one. What €2.800 floorstander deliberately sacrifices efficiency and bass reach? Very few. But Teufel Definion 5 designer Jörg Weber clearly does. He not only cites exemplary impulse response precision for sealed loading but also higher SPL happiness at lower distortion. True, his F3 cutoff is higher but that's partially offset with the shallower 12dB/octave acoustic roll-off compared to a vented 24dB/octave slope. Additionally pure organic wool rather than synthetic damping materials increases the virtual cubic volume by nearly 10% to improve efficiency and bass extensions says Weber. He calls the -3dB bass frequency 42Hz.

Not only is the enclosure sealed, it's noticeably less square than one is used with Teufel. The Definion 5 gets slimmer around back which isn't merely attractive but avoids parallel side walls to reduce internal standing waves. The same notion reappears in the shape of the mid/high driver chamber. Its sealing brace sits diagonal, not horizontal. Still on internal geometry plusses, the filter network doesn't live in the high-pressure bass department but a floor higher to minimize microphony effects. Trick.