Monitor Audio Gold 200 – HiFi Review

Monitor Audio Gold 200 – HiFi Review


This is my HiFi review of these excellent Monitor Audio Gold 200 speakers. They are floor standing ‘compact’ 3-way speakers that are really very attractive to look at and the white ones I have, with a wonderful satin finish, are very nice indeed.

Monitor Audio Gold 200

Note the flat top

The Gold range is at the higher end of the Monitor Audio range of speakers and these 200s share the driver technology from the Platinum II flagship speakers.  The range comprises bookshelf 100s, the 200s are compact floor standers and the 300s are the big floor standers of the Gold range.  There is also a subwoofer, corner and centre speaker in the range for AV set-ups if needed.

Design

The Monitor Audio Gold 200 speakers feature two 6½” (165 mm) RDT II (rigid diaphragm technology) bass drivers beneath a 2½” (64 mm) C-CAM (ceramic-coated aluminium/magnesium) mid-range driver.  They are backed up by dual rear-firing HiVE II ports.  Finally an MDP (micro pleated diaphragm) high-frequency transducer module handles a smooth and crisp high end.  The speakers themselves are nicely poised in terms of sensitivity at 88dB (1W/1m), and at 4 Ohms impedance, they certainly seem to be very easy to drive.   The frequency range is wide and good.

The speakers themselves are solid, indeed classic, to look at, but also they’re stylish and they certainly suit the contemporary room we have.  I have them bi-wired by taking the link out of the back.  They have a flat top and there is even a non-slip ‘desktop leather’ feel mat for putting things on.  I’m generally not happy about stuff on speakers but this is a nice touch.

Quality

Monitor Audio Gold 200The speakers, from box to standing have a high quality feel to them and they feel good, with nice curved corners.  Spike assembly is a hazardous business as these are by far the sharpest spikes I’ve ever encountered, ouch!  They are assembled with an alan key that is provided in the box, it is a nice touch also.

The bi-wired rear terminals are very chunky and easy to access.   The front dust covers are held on with strong magnets, I had them on upside down, until I visited the site for the specs!

Specification

Monitor Audio Gold 200 specifications from the site.

System Format – 3-way

Frequency Response (-6 dB) – 35 Hz – 50 kHz

Sensitivity (1W@1M) – 88 dB

Nominal Impedance – 4 Ohms

Minimum Impedance – 3.4 Ohms @ 1 kHz

Maximum SPL – 114 dBA (Pair)

Power Handling (RMS) – 200 W

Recommended Amplifier Requirements – 80 – 200 W

Bass Alignment – Bass Reflex, Dual HiVe II port system

Crossover Frequency – L.F/ M.F: 650 Hz, M.F/ H.F: 3.5 kHz

Drive Unit Complement
2 x 61/2″ RDT II long-throw bass driver
1 x 21/2″ C-CAM mid-range driver
1 x MPD high-frequency transducer

External Dimensions (Including Grille and Terminals (H x W x D))
950 x 195 x 330.6 mm (373/8 x 711/16 x 13″)

External Dimensions (including Outrigger Feet and Spikes (H x W x D))
997 x 282.8 x 387.8 mm (391/4 x 111/8 x 151/4″)

Weight (each) – 21.86 kg (48 lb 2 oz)

Sold As – Pair

Finishes – Piano Gloss Black; Piano Ebony; Satin White; Dark Walnut

Performance

Set-up

I have the Monitor Audio Gold 200 speakers set-up with my recently serviced (new CD and software and a brushup) Naim Uniti 2 which is possibly a pretty good and typical match.  They are replacing for this review a rather nicely settled in pair of B&W CM7s.  The 200s are sat on a stone floor so I have the (very sharp) spikes mounted on some shoes with a soft rubber base to ensure a solid connecting to planet Earth.  I’m using Atlas Hyper speaker cable, bi-wired.  My sources include Tidal and a Uniti Serve that is digitally connected to the Uniti 2 for the purposes of this review, though I usually have it on the network for ease.

I have the speakers about 50cm from the back wall (they’re rear ported) about 2 meters apart, the room is otherwise sparse, there’s a rug,  and I’m giving the speakers a full “Maxell, Break the Sound Barrier” audition from about three meters (though I’m certainly not as cool as Pete Murphy in the ad!  I note on further inspection the speakers in the Maxell advert are JBL L100 Classics, by the look of it).  The 200s are marginally toed-in.

Verdict

The soundstage is deep, subtle, … the sound is… oceans deep

These are very nice speakers to listen to.  They are dynamic in this ‘Maxell’ set-up.  I’m listening to Malcolm McLaren’s “Waltz Darling”, a highlight of the late 80s that still stands up, both in flow and production.    The tracks are always bouncy and rhythm is for a premium in this album.  The Gold 200s deliver with every over-the-top track and this is a fine sound.  I’m as impressed with my old Uniti 2 as I am with the 200s.

Overall, I feel they are less bright than say the CM7s they’ve replaced but that is not to say they’re dull in any way.  The soundstage is deep, subtle, take Johann Johannseen’s ‘Flight From the City’; the sound is… oceans deep but not so wide,  they’re really good.   Resolution is also very good indeed with Nils Frahm’s ‘Some’ sounding really exciting.  I get a moody image but a clean vocal from London Grammar’s “Rooting for You”, lovely.

The low end is very responsive with the twin bass drivers moving plenty of air out the back and front of the cabinet.  A twenty-minute run-through of the 2049 soundtrack by Hans Zimmer reminds you of the power and joy in a cleanly delivered bass line.  Just after this, I wandered into ‘Summer Wind’ and ‘One for my baby (and one more for the road)’ by Sinatra on the same soundtrack, what great songs and piano lines.  Sinatra’s vocal is impeccable in these speakers.

Overall

The main characteristic I feel is these speakers are nicely dynamic and vocals have proved to be the highlight over the last few days, the vibrancy of the speaker is notable.  I would definitely recommend an audition of these speakers, they are in a very competitive HiFi retail space, but should get a listen.

Love 

A favourable ‘vocal’ speaker

Desktop leather feel ‘tops’

Satin white finish

Like 

Good energy, vibrant

The cabinet finish

Grille

Boxed well

Wish 

The sharp spikes were a bit rounded?

 

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