Eltax Monitor PWR 1959 review: a vintage design and unprecedented performance

0
920

The Eltax Monitor PWR 1959 is a three-way, bass-reflex model with an attractive vintage design. It is equipped with a large 15” woofer that can produce a deep level of bass as low as 30Hz. This massive driver is coupled with a 6” midrange driver situated in between two horn-loaded dome tweeters. Sold for €999 per pair, the Eltax Monitor PWR 1959 is the Danish manufacturer’s flagship model. Will it impress the most nostalgic audiophiles?

The Eltax Monitor PWR 1959 has a three-way design with a 15” woofer that promises powerful and deep lows.

Eltax Monitor PWR 1959: the brand

Located in Jutland, Denmark 300km from Copenhagen, the Danish company has been manufacturing hi-fi speakers for over 50 years. These speakers are renowned for their design and excellent value for money. The successful combination of design quality, audio performance and affordability has earned Eltax a worldwide following. At Eltax, attention to detail isn’t just a figure of speech, it’s part of the brand’s heritage.

This meticulous approach is found in every Eltax production. The Danish brand is responsible for a long line of compact speakers, floorstanding speakers, center speakers, wireless hi-fi speakers, party speakers and subwoofers, all of which have been carefully designed and priced to defy all competition. Eltax offers high-quality speakers, with mostly conventional but carefully optimized acoustic solutions. Therefore, it is not surprising that one of Son-Video.com’s best-sellers, with more than 500 rave reviews, is in fact a speaker manufactured by the Danish brand: the Eltax Monitor III. This compact 2-way, down-firing speaker with a bass-reflex enclosure has won over many music lovers, sound engineers, and the specialized press with its ability to deliver amazingly balanced sound. This Eltax speaker also has a connected version with a Bluetooth receiver called Eltax Monitor III BT Phono

The Eltax Monitor PWR 1959 vintage speaker beside the iconic Eltax Monitor III bookshelf speaker.

Eltax Monitor PWR 1959: packaging & accessories

Each Eltax Monitor PWR 1959 speaker comes in its own box inside of which it is securely protected and held in place with several polystyrene blocks. Once the box is opened, you can see the speaker wrapped in its white synthetic fabric cover. It comes with an acoustic fabric grille to hide the drivers if you want.

Eltax Monitor PWR 1959: presentation

Design

The Eltax Monitor PWR 1959 is the Danish manufacturer’s top-of-the-line speaker. It has a design that will appeal to vintage hi-fi enthusiasts. Its thick MDF cabinet benefits from several internal braces to reduce resonance. The speaker rests on a hollow base so that it is raised and to limit unwanted vibrations. The design of the Eltax Monitor PWR 1959’s cabinet is based on that of speakers from the seventies. It is 90cm high, 38.5cm deep and 51.8cm wide. It is therefore advised to place it in a relatively big room in order to not encumber the space and to let its 15” driver express itself freely. It is more suited for rooms from 20m2 to 70/80m2.

The Eltax Monitor PWR 1959 speaker has a vintage design with a cabinet whose design is based on that of speakers from the seventies.

The Eltax Monitor PWR 1959 speaker’s drivers are hidden behind a large fabric acoustic grille. A discreet strap is attached to the bottom of each grille so they are easy to remove when the user wants to reveal the drivers. It is unfortunate, however, that the grille does not use a magnetic fastening system, which would have allowed the front panel of the Eltax Monitor PWR 1959 to be free of notches.

A small strap makes it easy to remove the Eltax Monitor PWR 1959’s acoustic grille.

Drivers

The Eltax Monitor PWR 1959 floorstanding speaker has a three-way design with four relatively standard drivers that are intelligently implemented. It has the advantage of being equipped with a very large 15” driver. Its cone is made of cellulose to provide rigidity and lightness, guaranteeing a dynamic and responsive reproduction. The large diameter of the cone allows a large quantity of air to be moved and provides a very low frequency resonance, which gives the Eltax Monitor PWR 1959 a good transient response. This driver is loaded in a bass-reflex enclosure with a double circular port that extends the frequency response to 30Hz.

The Eltax Monitor PWR 1959’s 15” driver allows a large quantity of air to be moved and therefore provides deep and powerful bass.

To reproduce the high frequencies, the Eltax Monitor PWR 1959 speaker features two 1” dome tweeters equipped with a phase plug to erase interference and reduce distortion. Each tweeter is horn-loaded to mechanically amplify its output and optimize the distribution of the high frequencies.

The Eltax Monitor PWR 1959 speaker features two 1” dome tweeters equipped with a phase plug to reduce distortion.

Lastly, a 6” cellulose fiber midrange driver is situated above the two tweeters. This placement is not random, as it allows for phase optimization and consequently a better perception of the different frequencies.

The Eltax Monitor PWR 1959 speaker’s 6” midbass driver is carefully positioned to optimize phase and the perception of the different frequencies.

Measurements

The Eltax Monitor PWR 1959 floorstanding speaker has a linear response across a frequency range of 30Hz to 22kHz. It has an excellent power handling capacity of 250 watts with a sensitivity of 96dB and a nominal impedance of 8 ohms. In spite of this high sensitivity, a hi-fi amplifier with a good power reserve is preferable in order to efficiently power the large low frequency driver. Finally, the screw terminals on the back of the speaker are compatible with wide gauge cables, banana plugs and fork plugs.

The screw terminals on the back of the Eltax Monitor PWR 1959 speaker are compatible with wide gauge cables, banana plugs and fork plugs.

Eltax Monitor PWR 1959: key specifications

Design

  • 3-way speaker
  • Reinforced MDF cabinet
  • Double horn-loaded tweeter

Drivers

  • 1 x 15” cellulose cone low frequency driver
  • 1 x 6” cellulose cone midrange driver
  • 2 x 1” horn-loaded dome tweeters with phase plug

Measurements

  • Power handling capacity: 30 to 250W
  • Sensitivity: 96dB
  • Impedance: 5 to 8 ohms
  • Frequency response: 30Hz to 22kHz

General

  • Dimensions (WxHxD): 900 x 518 x 385mm
  • Weight: 34kg

Eltax Monitor PWR 1959: listening conditions

For our review, we chose to connect the vintage Eltax Monitor PWR 1959 speakers to the Atoll IN200 amplifier, a transistor model developing 2 x 200W into 8 ohms across a very wide bandwidth, using Viard Audio Silver HD12 HP speaker cables. Afterwards, we paired them with the Cayin CS-55A KT88 tube amplifier, more modest in terms of performance as it delivers 2 x 40 watts into 8 ohms. The source used was a network player connected with Norstone Jura RCA cables. We used it to play FLAC files shared on the local network, as well as our Qobuz and Spotify playlists. 

The Eltax Monitor PWR 1959 speaker with the Atoll IN200 and  Cayin CS-55A KT88 amplifiers.

Eltax Monitor PWR 1959: listening impressions

We began our listening session with the Atoll IN200 amp and the Brothers in Arms album by Dire Straits. The spectral balance was perfectly preserved with rich and textured mids, as well dynamic, deep and nicely extended lows. The Eltax Monitor PWR 1959’s 15” driver provided a powerful performance, without ever being too ostentatious. The double tweeter ensured an accurate reproduction of the original timbres and brought beautiful transparency to the soundstage, which, on this album, benefits both the acoustic and electric guitar. The timbres of these two instruments soared with finesse and smoothness.

The 15” bass-reflex loaded woofer provides the Eltax Monitor PWR 1959 with dynamic, deep and extended bass.

With Lana Del Rey’s song Salvatore, the soundstage was transparent, airy and spacious. The spatialization was masterfully controlled, with perfectly structured sound levels for a natural reproduction. The singer’s voice was naturally rendered in the center of the soundstage and gave an impression of proximity with the artist. The harmonic range and texture of her voice were also accurately reproduced.

The Eltax Monitor PWR 1959 speakers are very versatile and can reproduce any musical style efficiently. They displayed great energy with Anne-Sophie Mutter’s classical music performances, particularly during the orchestra’s apogees. The sound was reproduced naturally, with transparency and clarity. The violins that accompany the different compositions were beautifully smooth and free of any harshness.

The Eltax Monitor PWR 1959 speakers are highly adaptable to reproduce any musical style.

Eltax Monitor PWR 1959: compared to…

Magnat Transpuls 1500: at €1,090 a pair, the Magnat Transpuls 1500 speaker has a pretty similar design with a vintage aesthetic, 15” woofer and dual horn-loaded tweeter. The Magnat speakers offer even more powerful and deep lows, as they are capable of going down to 16Hz compared to 30Hz for the Eltax Monitor PWR 1959s. The highest notes are also more detailed, soft and subtle. 

Magnat Transpuls 1000: also in the vintage design category, the Magnat Transpuls 1000 are a more compact alternative to the 1959 Eltax Monitor PWR. However, this advantage is at the expense of the woofer, which is reduced to 10”, so the Magnat Transpuls 1000 cannot compete with the Eltax in the lows. In addition, the Magnat speaker only features one tweeter. Despite this, it is still a good choice for a small listening room where it would be difficult to integrate the Eltax model, which is more suited to a room that is over 20m2. 

Eltax Monitor PWR 1959: conclusion 

With the Eltax Monitor PWR 1959s, the Danish manufacturer provides a very impressive pair of speakers. The vintage design is excellent and gives any hi-fi installation a retro look. The 15” driver is this speaker’s main strength and offers deep, punchy and consistently well controlled lows. The midrange is rich and textured and ensures incredibly realistic vocals. The double horn-loaded tweeter is remarkably precise and brings a great deal of clarity and transparency to the soundstage.

What we liked

  • The vintage design
  • The deep and well controlled lows
  • The clear soundstage
  • The energetic sound

What we would have liked

  • A magnetic acoustic grille
  • For them to have been a bit smaller


Donnez votre avis !

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.