When it comes to affordable, quality loudspeakers, it is possible that nobody does them better than Paradigm. Their Monitor 7 loudspeakers, reviewed here, may be the best value in their class, mating superb performance to an extremely affordable price of $649 per pair.
The Monitor 7s are three-way, four-driver floor-standing loudspeakers that are beautifully finished and sonically refined across their entire frequency range. While somewhat traditional in their appearance, the Monitor 7s dress things up a bit with their four finish options, which include Wenge, Cherry, Rosenut and Black Ash. The Monitor 7 features a single one-inch ferro-fluid dome tweeter, mated to a five-and-a-half-inch bass/midrange driver, coupled to two five-and-a-half-inch bass drivers. The Monitor 7 has a reported frequency response of 54Hz-20kHz and is very efficient with its 94dB sensitivity rating into an eight-ohm load.
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• In terms of performance, the Monitor 7s are phenomenal all-'rounders, possessing a refined and smooth top end and a warm non-fatiguing midrange. Bass-wise, the Monitor 7s are rather robust and can plunge deeper than their dual five-and-a-half-inch drivers would have you believe.
• Dynamically, the Monitor 7s are surprising, possessing the sort of lightning reflexes you'd expect to pay much more for.
• Soundstaging and imaging are both superb with the Monitor 7s. The Monitor 7s' soundstage is as deep as it is wide and very nicely detailed and natural in its presentation. In terms of imaging, especially center focus, the Monitor 7s react much more like mini monitors than floor-standing loudspeakers.
• The Monitor 7s' fit and finish are first-rate, giving them a far richer appearance then their sub-$700 price tag would have you believe. They look like far more expensive speakers, especially in their Cherry, Rosenut or Wenge finishes.
Continue to Page 2 to learn some of the downsides of the Monitor 7s.