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First a quick glance at some of the company's 2014 product line in the foyer...

...and closer looks at a passive ProLogos dual 7" 2-way speaker in optional gloss wood skins on the basic stand...

...and a fully active 'plus' version as a slightly taller now 3-way design with three Telos amps on board and in the traditional metal finish on the mechanical grounding stand. Yes the latter is quite robotic with its lateral bolt suspensions and physical earthing rod. Even the former with its vintage grill looks at best like a Harbeth or Spendor über monitor in hoary BBC tradition.

Yet once listening commenced, these matters receded from consideration in due haste. My usually so reliable internal decorator critic quit his job. Bastard!

Goldmund's large sound room/lab deliberately shuns architectural optimization as it then wouldn't represent the type of standard environments customers must contend with. The only nod at minimal treatment were those suspended large black panels running on wheels in tracks to be easily moved. Lowly lit, you can still make out the size discrepancy between the 120dB/1m capable ProLogos and lego-esque Apologue towers.

Here we see the passive wood-clad ProLogos fronted by two 500-watt Telos monos, puny Job 225 behind and between those...

... and a closer look at the big boys which still were far from being Goldmund's really big guns.

Our front-end was this silly-expensive* digital 'turntable', Job preamp at the bottom.

* Now that we understand how Goldmund's extreme fat-cat models finance all the rest of it, we stop calling them silly and perhaps best think of them as sponsorship opportunities for the affluent so our kind can enjoy the trickle-down Job and entry-level Goldmund kit.

Act III of my demo came from this active ProLogos pair which Goldmund call the most dynamic speaker they've ever produced.

The easy verdict? 'twas all the same sound. It would have been boring hadn't it been so good. And, DPS'd active beat passive drive in a KO. Moving from Job 225 to Telos 500 monos increased dynamics, expanded the soundstage, upped ambient recovery and weighted the bass a bit more. On flavour, tonal balance and house sound however it was exactly the same dish, simply a bit less of it for the Job like entrée vs. main course portion. Once all amps had left the stage or hopped into the boxes as it were, the same differences added themselves once again but to an even greater extent. For less money and with less powerful internal amps, the active ProLogos ran the show over the passive version driven by the bigger costlier amps. Higher tech beat lower tech. So let the puritan purists who call DSP evil remain stuck in the last century. Intelligent pragmatists exploit technical advances for better results.The perhaps biggest advance here came from a shift in gestalt. In very primitive fundamentalist terms you might call it progressing from very good hifi to somehow cheating the ear/brain into forgetting the electro-mechanical involvement of gear. Higher precision and increased control were actually in the service of greater ease and suspension of disbelief. One upshot? The 'lowly' Job kit—for the active session Goldmund's digital preamp replaced the Job preamp—really did deliver the Goldmund house sound. Another? You needn't play this stuff loud to arrive. Kudos to Veronique who controlled the demo for both an intelligent selection of demo tracks and for keeping the volume to a fully satisfying yet 'normal' level.