Wharfedale’s Diamond becomes Active and goes walk-about
25th August 2016
The Diamond Active Series from Wharfedale features ‘True Wireless’ technology and comprises two models: the Diamond A1, a ‘bookshelf’-size speaker (31.5cm high) and the Diamond A2, a larger floorstanding design (91.2cm high)
Both models come in pairs, in the manner of traditional stereo hi-fi speakers and include a 50W amplifier in each speaker to deliver a combined ‘system power’ of 100W.
Many ostensibly similar stereo-paired Bluetooth speakers incorporate the amp circuitry and Bluetooth receiver in one speaker, with a cable connecting this powered speaker to a second, passive speaker. This means that while you can connect your playback device to the speakers wirelessly, the cable between them limits the speakers’ placement.
Wharfedale’s Diamond Active Series speakers work differently. They include a wireless hub, to which the playback device is paired via Bluetooth (with support for the aptX codec). The H1 hub then conveys the left and right audio signals to the appropriate speaker via uncompressed wireless transmission, allowing greater freedom in terms of positioning.
The H1 hub avoids the often-crowded 2.4GHz frequency band, focusing on 5.8GHz instead. The wireless module has the ability to switch automatically between frequencies when required, thus avoiding any local interference wherever the speakers are sited.
Each speaker may be placed up to 20m from the hub; the only other siting requirement is that both speakers, with their dedicated amplifiers, need to be plugged into the mains.
Digital inputs are supplied in both optical and coaxial flavours, while two RCA-phono inputs cater for analogue sources. Touch-sensitive controls on the hub’s top surface allow adjustment of volume and input switching, while a remote control is included.
Additional controls on the speakers’ rear include bass adjustment (+/- 6dB). Each speaker can be selected as either ‘left’ or ‘right’ in a stereo configuration; a mono mode is also available if the speakers’ positioning is not suited to stereo.
This mode can even be used to create a simple two-room setup.
Both Diamond Active models sport proprietary bass/mid drivers with woven Kevlar cones – one 130mm unit in the A1 and two 165mm units in the A2 – as featured in the Diamond 200 Series. The cones incorporate semielliptical ‘break-up’ areas while rear-firing reflex ports are featured.
The 25mm fabric dome tweeter is also derived from the Diamond 200 Series, incorporating a waveguide around the diaphragm. The drive units are combined via a crossover network, specifically developed to optimise the performance of the Diamond Active speakers’ integrated amplifier/driver configuration.
The front baffle is available in a choice of high-gloss black or high-gloss white.
Wharfedale’s Diamond Active speakers are available from October, priced at £599.95 per pair for the Diamond A1 and £999.95 per pair for the Diamond A2 (including the H1 wireless hub).
To learn more, click 01480 447700 or click on www.wharfedale.co.uk