The Silver Series in white
Launched on May 18, 2017 at the Munich High End event, Monitor Audio’s nine-model Silver Series range was created with contemporary Hi-Fi in mind. Two compact stand-mount options and a choice of three slim-line floor-standers take up a minimum of space, while the Silver FX wall-mount and two center channel speakers are designed for discreet AV installations. Completing the Silver Series is a powered subwoofer, featuring on-board DSP for resounding bass down to 22 Hz. Magnetic grille fixings on all models ensure an elegant baffle aided by rear mounting of the proprietary HiVe II ports.
The Silver Series in walnut"We've created a new visual character in the Silver Series", explained Dean Hartley, Monitor Audio's technical director. "Adopting a 'less is more' approach, we have evaluated every component and redesigned from the ground up." Part of the work involved the use of precision laser scanning equipment (accurate to thousandths of a millimetre) at the world-renowned National Physical Laboratory to ensure optimum cabinet bracing in the quest for the most natural sound.”
Monitor Audio has used its four-decade expertise in the field to create new versions of its highly regarded C-CAM dished cone specifically for this Silver Series. Made from a single piece of the ceramic-coated aluminum/magnesium alloy, formed into a continuous dish profile, its rigidity brings noticeable sonic benefits over conventional softer cone materials that flex, producing audible distortion. "The result", added Hartley, "is significantly reduced distortion and a cleaner, more faithful reproduction of the music, whatever your choice of listening."
Technical enhancements to the speaker's 'engine' also include beefed up driver magnets and improved voice coils, resulting in a cleaner sound even when listening at high levels. Monitor Audio now claims the purest mid-range quality in its class along with precise and consistent imaging, both on and off-axis, thanks to a newly created teardrop shaped mid-range/tweeter module on the Silver 300 and Silver 500 floorstanders. High-quality components in the all critical crossover networks help to deliver the perfect sound, so premium grade polypropylene film capacitors, air core and laminated steel core inductors have been deployed.
A Silver Series C350 in rosenut, placed before a fireplaceThe two Silver Series stand mounts are small speakers that produce a big sound thanks to drive unit magnets and 1-inch (32mm) voice coils which generate bass. The ultra compact Silver 50 is a two-way bass-reflex featuring a new 5-inch bass/mid-range unit and new 1-inch C-CAM Gold Dome tweeter to become the most diminutive bookshelf model ever in the long running Silver Series.
Its larger sibling, the Silver 100, combines the same tweeter with a 8-inch C-CAM mid/bass driver, shoehorned into the compact two-way ported design. The large drive units allow the Silver 100 to project dynamic headroom and bass extension usually reserved for floorstanders. "This is a serious audiophile speaker", said Hartley, "capable of producing remarkable resolution from the most intricate musical scores to the loudest rock concert—all with superlative ease."
Three floorstanders are offered in the new Silver line-up: the Silver 200, Silver 300, and Silver 500. The hybrid Silver 200 is acoustically and electrically a two-and-a-half-way dual chamber reflex design. It uses twin high efficiency HiVe II ports as well as two 5-inch C-CAM drive units (handling bass and bass/mid frequencies) alongside the new 1-inch C-CAM Gold Dome tweeter. Differential tuning ensures that the mid-range crosses over with the tweeter for precise and consistent imaging both on and off-axis. The advantage of this configuration allows performance resembling that of a more complex three-way yet ensuring higher efficiency and extended bass notes from the space-saving enclosure.
"The Silver 200 has been carefully created to produce incredible musicality, even when sited in close proximity to a wall, offering the perfect blend of lifestyle living and audio performance," explained Dean Hartley. "Monitor Audio is delighted to have created here a smaller box with a bigger sound, ideal for the modern home."
The Silver 300 pair in walnutThe first of two three-ways in the line-up, the Silver 300 builds on the credentials of its predecessor but with crucial drive unit improvements for an enhanced sound quality. Listeners can be assured of class-leading mid-range delivered by a dedicated 4-inch driver featuring Monitor Audio's 'under hung' voice coil and motor system for low distortion because the coil is always in the magnetic gap. A pair of long-throw bass drivers work in tandem to generate a low-frequency extension. The cabinet can be placed just a foot from the wall and yield satisfying sound.
At the top of the Silver range is the Silver 500 with a pair of long-throw 8-inch C-CAM bass drivers for a 30 Hz bottom end down, negating the need for a separate subwoofer. The mid-range is projected by a dedicated 4-inch RST driver. Monitor Audio claims that a modestly priced amplifier is all that is needed thanks to a friendly load on the partnering electronics.
The Silver 500 in black glossThe Silver range accounts for home theater installations with a choice of two center channels, a compact, wall-mountable two-way ideal for rear channels, and a high-spec subwoofer with a top mounted control panel for access to features including preset EQ settings for ‘Music’, ‘Movie’, and ‘Impact’.
The Silver FX is a discreet profile, angled baffle speaker intended to be flush mounted on side or rear walls. Its dispersion characteristics can be changed via switch, offering dipole or bipole directivity in multi-channel systems. Dual 1-inch C-CAM Gold Dome tweeters, featuring vented Neo magnet systems for minimum distortion, are combined with a Monitor Audio 6-inch C-CAM mid/bass driver.
A choice of two center-channel speakers is offered in this new line-up: the Silver C150, and the larger Silver C350, to deliver articulate dialogue and crisp dynamics to movies. The first uses a compact design with twin 5-inch C-CAM bass drivers in a familiar three-driver configuration alongside the 1-inch C-CAM Gold Dome tweeter in a two-and-a-half-way sealed system. The model works well close to wall and in confined spaces, while promising elimination of the central 'dead spot' issue found with typical mid-tweeter arrangements. It is ideally partnered with the Silver 50 and Silver 200 models for consistent results.
The Silver W-12 powered subwoofer features a long-throw 12-inch drive unit and an over-specified driver assembly, which has a powerful magnet system and voice coil. A built-in 500 W Class-D amplifier provides headroom while on-board DSP is employed to deliver filtering alongside the Monitor Audio APC (Automatic Position Correction) system that routinely detects and eliminates detrimental room acoustics. To prevent distortion and the possibility of the unit being over driven, a 32-bit micro-controller at the heart of the subwoofer monitors the subwoofer’s performance levels.