What Hi Fi Sound and Vision Fri, 15 Jul 2011, 10:45am

Acoustic Energy Aegis Neo 4

Tested at £700
80100
4

Value deep bass, strong dynamics and plenty of punch? These are for you

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For

  • Dynamic and insightful sound
  • capable of huge, high-quality bass
  • go loud with ease

Against

  • Lack of treble refinement
  • the sound turns a little too soft at low volume levels

These Acoustic Energy speakers are big, standing 110cm tall and weighing a hefty 23kg.

The other thing to separate the Neo 4 from the norm is the three-way design. This allows the engineers to optimise tweeter, midrange and twin bass drivers for their specific jobs. And on the whole it works well.

Once positioned properly, well away from side and rear wall, the single-wired Neo 4s turn out to be a capable speaker, with plenty of clarity and precision – qualities not often found in such speakers.

These floorstanders sound right at home no matter whether you play a Beethoven Symphony or Rihanna’s latest set. That’s down to strong dynamics, a well-judged tonal balance and the ability to sound organised even when the music gets busy.

Deep bass aplenty
You’d expect a speaker this size to deliver plenty of deep bass, and high volumes, and they duly oblige. What’s impressive is that the bass is tautly controlled and nicely agile even when pushed.

We like these speaker a lot, but they aren’t beyond criticism.

That treble may be well balanced with the rest of the frequency range but it isn’t the most refined, being too easily provoked into sounding thin, spiky and a little detached by less than perfect recordings.

And, compared with the likes of Monitor Audio’s Silver RX6 with their smart cosmetics, our vinyl-covered test pair look rather ordinary.

The Neo 4s are good speakers for the cash. With a more sophisticated high-frequency performance they would be good enough to worry the very best at this price level.

As things stand, they remain a good buy.

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