Do Acoustics – HiFi Review

Do Acoustics – HiFi Review


Do AcousticsThis is my HiFi Review of these Do Acoustics Armonia Mundi speakers.  The Armonia Mundi speakers are terrific speakers and have been a joy to listen to in these last few weeks.  They are diminutive in size but very distinctive in look making them a stylish option in a particular contemporary setting, or if you have a limit on space.

Do Acoustics hail from Catania, Sicily in the shadow of Mount Etna, there’ll be no volcano comparisons after this, I promise, but the Do Acoustics Armonia Mundi speakers are as smooth as lava.  There, I’m done!

Design

The Armonia Mundi is a floor-standing speaker, built at just 10cm wide and 17cm deep, and standing under a meter in height (86.5cm).    This version of the Do Acoustics Armonia Mundi speaker is passive, there is an active alternative if required.   The speakers are transmission line in their set up with a bass-reflex design.  They feature a full range 3-inch driver and a 3-inch woofer.   The transmission line set-up delivers a brilliantly articulated source for detailed vocal listening.

There is a bigger spec Do Acoustics Armonia Mundi called the Impact with a three-way design.  There is also an active version of the Armonia Mundi Impact speaker.

Quality

Do AcousticsThe speakers are absolutely beautifully presented in bamboo, I really like them.  The corners and the edges are slightly rounded and they have a really soft feel, there is no sign of joins so I really can’t understand how they do it.  The speaker grills, mine are in grey, are flush to the bamboo outer and are sumptuous.  The speakers have a wider base/footprint for stability, presumably; mine are supplied with spikes that screw into the bases.

Bamboo

My sample set of speakers features bamboo which is extremely nice to feel.  Apparently, the bamboo possesses a superior hardness in comparison with the most common woods and can brag of very good mechanic properties.  The speakers feel very solid and actually remind me of my own Jern speakers, which are also made of an extremely rigid material too, cast iron!

Do AcousticsDo Acoustic note that bamboo is resistant and light and is also called “natural steel” because it has got a high coefficient of elasticity, a very low shrinkage and a remarkable steadiness. Bamboo shows high resistance to humidity and possesses some not very known antibacterial properties because sometimes it is moth-proof, mould-proof and anti-allergic.  They also go on to say bamboo is an ecological material: in fact, there is not any deforestation because bamboo is a gramineus plant with spontaneous regrowth (like coppicing, I think) and the sort of bamboo plants utilized for the DoAcoustics diffusers are not the sort of plants that panda eat.

Performance

Set-up

I’ve had the Do Acoustics speakers on the Naim Uniti Star which was quite a nice set up with the Kudos KS-1 speaker cable I reviewed recently.  The speakers have just two binding posts, so the KS-1 was perfect.  After this, because the speakers are so light I moved them to my listening room with both a Roksan K2 and then with a new Rega Aethos (slightly over the top).

With the Naim Uniti Star

The speakers were pressed into heavy daily use in our kitchen dining/living area with the brilliant Uniti Star.  This means the Uniti Star is on Bluetooth, streaming and SD Card duty as well as internet radio at other times (we like Groove Salad).

I find the speakers very musical, lively and punchy with the few usual standard tracks, like Daft Punk’s Get Lucky.  What is slightly inevitable is the low-end is a bit light but that is what these guys are; there is not the weight of air being moved around due to the design choices made.  Also, they’re replacing my own KEF R700s which makes the low-end deficit more noticeable.

Resolution

…tracks, like Nils Frahm’s piano tracks, are absolutely beautiful

Nonetheless, the sound is timed nicely and we’ve really enjoyed the sound.  Detailed tracks, like Nils Frahm’s piano tracks, are absolutely beautiful, with the volume turned up, you can hear the softness of the hammers on the strings and it is very engaging indeed.

With the Roksan K2

the resolution and timing is the standout feature

Moving the speakers across for some critical listening, I hooked up a Bluesound Node 2i with Atlas Mavros Do Acousticsinterconnectors to the K2 with QED Supremus speaker cable.  Again the resolution and timing is the standout feature.  Listening to Oil Rigs by The Delines the detail from the guitar strings are beautiful in the speakers, the soundstage is slightly behind the speakers adding a degree of depth.  I now had the speakers on the carpet (before they were on stone) so I have the spikes on the base which is helpful for positioning and direction-finding.

With my wonderful Jern speakers, I use a REL 5i subwoofer to support the low-end and give me the satisfaction I need.  I thought I would try the same with these Do Acoustics Armonia Mundi speakers.  And there it is, with the low-end support from the REL subwoofer I have a fantastic soundstage and presentation I’m after.  All of the detail and accuracy from the Armonia Mundi speakers is retained with the punch that was already present, simply enhanced.  With the Brilliant BluOS desktop app I’m flying through tracks and music with the Node 2i.  The  Armonia Mundi speakers crunch through the tracks with timed, delight.

With the Rega Aethos

Do Acoustics

Slightly off set base for stability

So, at this point, 3000 pounds worth of adrenaline turn up in the form of the Rega Aethos integrated amplifier.  KABOOM!. The Aethos is insane, totally over the top for these speakers, but what a great sound and there is no stress or bother from the Do Acoustics pair.  It is time for me to play my favourite album, Ryana Adams’ Gold.   Every track on this album is a demonstration of musical excellence and lyrical story-telling and the Armonia Mundi speakers are ‘firecrackers’, delivering with ease this wonderful album, driven by this powerhouse amplifier.

At this point, I put a CD into my Oppo Blu-Ray disc player to check I’m in the right place and sure enough the crystal sound is there.  I really like these Radio 2 Piano Sessions CDs for their stripped back presentation and the Rufus Wainwright cover of Hallelujah! is beautiful here, the detail in these speakers is excellent.

I suspect if you are looking for value from a more contemporary set-up the Brio might be a more appropriate partner for the Do Acoustics Armonia Mundi speakers, however, you wouldn’t hear me complaining at this time.  Maybe the brilliant Brio (see this review) with a P3 turntable and these speakers would be wonderful, high-end starting point for someone.

With a Blusound Powernode 2i

This is possibly a more appropriate set-up.  The Powernode has the integrated amplifier built into the streaming platform like a pumped-up Node 2i.  It sounds great anyway but in this stripped down set-up, everything is very simple and contemporary.

As a set-up, the speakers and the Powernode 2i represent a pretty decent set-up for the outlay, though I love the Brio idea, above.  The sound is strong, powerful and equally detailed and the speakers are great performers.

Overall

I really like these speakers, they definitely deserve a trial listen if they fit in with your lifestyle choices and budget.  I would definitely recommend them for an audition, it is as always about how they sit between your ears.  I like them a lot.

 

Specification

Do AcousticsFrequency   +/- 3 db 55 Hz – 20 KHz 1 watt/m
87 db sensitivity
4 Ohm nominal impedance

Dimensions
H × W × D (CM)
86.5 × 10 × 17

Weight – 7.5 KG

FINISHES (GRILLES AVAILABLE IN GREY & BLACK)
White Matt, Black Matt, Purple Matt, Green Matt
Natural Bamboo*

Do AcousticsOthers finishes available on request (4-6 weeks lead time)

Standard Finishes £1599 Natural Bamboo £1799*

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