What Hi Fi Sound and Vision
Tue, 8 Jul 2008, 2:00pm
Heco Aleva 200
- Good build
- impressive scale
- good bass weight
- seamless integration
- Gets fazed by musical complexity
- issues at both frequency extremes
The German speaker manufacturer Heco is trying another relaunch here with the help of its latest distributor, Pure Sound, and a new range of speakers called Aleva.
These are the entry-level standmounts, the 200, and first impressions are good. These are well-built boxes, trimmed with some classy cosmetics. Look round the back and you'll find no fewer than five multi-way binding posts.
Two pairs are taken up with bi-wiring, leaving the extra connection as an option for those who want to lift the tweeter output by 2dB. Why would you do this?
Well, if you have a heavily furnished room, or want a bit more treble energy to liven things up. In use, the treble lift is subtle, but we preferred the standard setting as the speaker sounds more balanced this way.
As with any standmount a good pair of supports is essential - Partington's Super Dreadnoughts work well. Positioned a little into the room with a slight toe-in, the Hecos produce a large-scale, authoritative sound for smallish speakers.
Bass is surprisingly weighty and the midrange isn't shy with attack or punch. Detail levels are pleasing, integration between drivers is seamless, and there's not much wrong with tonal balance.
Move away from simple pop such as Adele's Chasing Pavements to something more demanding, such as Thelonious Monk's Played Twice, though, and you'll find this speaker struggles.
It gets confused when faced with the challenge of strong dynamics and musical complexity, losing the essential musical thread in the process.
A slightly monotonal treble and soft, overblown extreme bass don't really help matters.
Listen to the 200s with undemanding music and we think you'll be impressed. It's a clean and informative performer with such material. But set it some sterner tests and the cracks show.