April
2019

Country of Origin

Germany

Midex

Reviewer: Srajan Ebaen
Financial interests: click here
Sources: Retina 5K 27" iMac (4GHz quad-core with Turbo boost, 32GB RAM, 3TB FusionDrive, OSX Yosemite. iTunes 14.4), PureMusic 3.02, Audirvana 3, Qobuz Hifi, Tidal Hifi, COS Engineering D1, Denafrips Terminator, Soundaware D300Ref, AURALiC Vega 
Preamplifier: Nagra Classic, Wyred4Sound STP-SE Stage II, Vinnie Rossi LIO (AVT module)
Power & integrated amplifiers: Pass Labs XA30.8; FirstWatt SIT1 monos, F5, F6, F7; Goldmund/Job 225; Aura Note Premier; Wyred4Sound mINT; Nord Acoustics NC500 monos; LinnenberG Audio Liszt monos; Crayon Audio CFA-1.2
Loudspeakers: Audio Physic Codex; Cube Audio Nenuphar; Kroma Audio Mimí; Albedo Audio Aptica; EnigmAcoustics Mythology 1; Boenicke Audio W5se; Zu Audio Druid V & VI & Submission; German Physiks HRS-120; Eversound Essence; Avantages Audio César [on review]
Cables: Complete loom of Allnic Audio ZL3000/ZL5000 and Zu Event; KingRex uArt, Zu and LightHarmonic LightSpeed double-header USB cables; Tombo Trøn S/PDIF; van den Hul AES/EBU; AudioQuest Diamond glass-fibre Toslink; Black Cat Cable redlevel Lupo; Ocellia OCC Silver
Power delivery: Vibex Granada/Alhambra on all source components, Vibex One 11R on amps/sub
Equipment rack: Artesania Audio Exoteryc double-wide 3-tier with optional glass shelves, Exoteryc Krion and glass amp stands 
Sundry accessories: Acoustic System resonators
Room: 4 x 6m with high gabled beam ceiling opening into 4 x 8m kitchen and 5 x 8m living room, hence no wall behind the listening chairs
Review component retail: €9'000/pr

From one ex to the next.

No, today is not about a pending divorce but the younger sister of my wife. Really?

Nearly. Today we're looking at the new Audio Physic Midex. For the duration, it would replace our usual Codex reference speakers. Between those and this new model, our industrious Germans with the terribly exacting name had launched the Structure as their new flagship model.

The next photo assemblage illustrates its internal makeup. It's loaded with open-cell ceramic foam tiles, white honeycomb liners for the head array and a 3D-printed twin basket for its midrange driver. Ceramic foam is mostly air to be very light. Yet its porous spatter is nearly as hard as diamond. That makes it ideal proofing for the inner walls of a speaker cabinet. With Midex dropping after their new 4-way range topper, it was a foregone conclusion. Some of these latest structural tweaks would find their way into its own enclosure as well. Manfred Diestetich, head engineer at the firm, is a big believer in mechanical optimizations to improve his sonics. Making cabinets quieter—less reactive to pressurized air trapped inside—is one pillar of his ongoing design work.

Working with custom drivers built to his specs is another. With Midex, there's no longer the 'V twin' bass array championed by the firm's founder Joachim Gerhard as two opposed woofers on either cheek for a force-canceling array. Neither is there Manfred's hidden-woofer-in-a-box twist of our white Codex or the newer super Codex of the Structure. Midex splits its woofer into twain and has those twins bracket the smaller drivers. That makes it a 3-way with paralleled bass units. The filter at 2'800Hz slopes 3rd order to the tweeter and 2nd order to the midrange. The woofers come in at 200Hz on a 2nd-order.

My loaners would ship from Elite Audio UK, Audio Physic's Scottish importer who'd earlier supplied me with Codex and Avanti loaners. As their Grant Alexander now put it, "Midex as seen in our showroom [right] has gone through the burn-in process. They are therefore ready to be shipped out to you. The team here have been thoroughly impressed with them."

As an upper-end Audio Physic, the Midex cabinet is their signature parallelogram. It pushes back a standard rectangular box so that front/rear and top/bottom remain parallel but the former pair ends up angled, the latter perfectly horizontal.

As an upper-end Audio Physic, the cabinet is also a sandwich affair. A surcharge finish option of external glass bonds yet another disparate material to the job. This even works with their veneers. It looks fab and wears very hard. Forget scratches on thin wood skins. Simply wipe finger prints right off with Windex, a winning ex if ever there was one. Naturally, the glass doesn't just luxuriate the looks. It also further deadens the enclosure.

Its dimensions are just 20cm wide x 111 tall x 45 deep. Weight is 35kg. As the opening lineup showed, finish options are copious. Nominal impedance is 4Ω. Sensitivity is 89dB, useful bandwidth 30Hz – 40kHz.

From Wavecor, the 3rd-gen metal cone 1.7" tweeter and 5.9" midrange with polymer phase plug and ceramic coating both benefit from active cone damping. Unlike Gen I, that's no longer by silicone ring around the diaphragm edges nor Gen II's rubber ring but integrated into their surrounds. As Vivid do with their drivers, this pushes up their cones' first breakup mode. That bit of engineering smarts accomplishes with aluminium cones what elsewhere takes exotic and costly Beryllium.

As we saw in the cutaway, the filter components for these two drivers mount to honeycomb boards bonded to the vertical MDF brace. Even the WBT binding posts use viscoelastic decoupling. Manfred is a stickler for tweaky mechanical executions. That's why even the standard Midex footers can still be upgraded to their effective magnetic suspension footers. That's why the rear emissions of the upper and lower bass drivers hit numerous cross braces with porous ceramic foam 'windows' before exiting through a hidden slot at the inside of the lower front baffle for a vented alignment. Without such trickery, this wouldn't be a year 2019 Audio Physic.

Midex the name clearly wasn't for 'middling'…

… to be continued…