Apertura Edena Evolution

Distinctly different but definitely grounded

By Roy Gregory

The €10K – €15K loudspeaker market is amongst the most crowded and hotly contested in the audio field, with thriving, mainstream models from the likes of Wilson (the Sabrina X), Vienna Acoustics (the Liszt and Beethovens) and Focal (the Sopra 2) setting the bar pretty high, while niche brands such as Living Voice (the Avatar OBX) and Ubiq Audio (with the Model One) offer their particular take, stressing ease of drive and dynamic impact respectively. Indeed, those latter examples demonstrate that as well as one of the most densely populated market sectors, it is also one of the most inventive, the bill of materials and manufacturing budget allowing the designer ample latitude when it comes to shaping the product and its attributes.

French loudspeaker brand Apertura offers another, typically individual approach to this price band, in the shape of their small, stand-mounted Kalya model. Chief acoustic engineer Christian Yvon has a CV that includes speaker designs for Goldmund (the Apologue and Epilogue) as well as a spell at JMLabs, so neither the quality nor (perhaps) the specifics of that speaker should come as a huge surprise. Even so, it’s asymmetric, curved wall cabinet, inverted, hybrid driver array, proprietary DRIM composite-slope crossover, downward-firing port and novel mechanical grounding system amounts to an awful lot of individuality for such a small package . The problem is that, at €10K (including the dedicated stands) and despite its remarkable sound quality, many customers are going to be looking for a bigger floorstanding box, on the mistaken assumption that “more” physically somehow equates to “more music”. The genuine advantages of small speaker enclosures are well documented – unfortunately, just not as well documented as their challenges when it comes to bandwidth and efficiency. So, while there will always be a market for a speaker like the Kalya, cultivating a broader customer base demands an alter native approach, and that means creating a floor stander, preferably one that embodies the stand-mount’s technology, topology and considerable musical attributes. Let me introduce you to the Apertura Edena Evolution…

The outriggers mount stabilisers rather than spikes

The Edena sits two models below the Kalya in the Apertura range and uses primarily the same design philosophy and a remarkably similar set of ingredients. It uses an identical, off-set cabinet construction and grounding system and is another hybrid design that employs a DRIM crossover to blend its ribbon tweeter and isotactic polypropylene bass/mid driver. If “isotactic” sounds familiar, it’s because it is the same, mechanically tuneable diaphragm material used so successfully by Wilson Benesch. The Evolution suffix denotes a development of the original Edena Signature model and, while the DNA is apparent, the changes are substantial enough to constitute an all-new design. The heavily braced cabinet is of the same volume and uses the same pressure laminated, curved MDF walls and non-parallel front and rear baffles as its predecessor, although it’s now taller, narrower and deeper. But while it’s the cabinet’s curves that catch the eye, an awful lot is going on beneath the Edena’s polished exterior. The Evolution has gained the five-inch ribbon tweeter from the model above (the Onira), which has, in turn, necessitated an all-new custom bass/mid driver and crossover to lace things together. The two-way crossover uses a complex combination of six, 12 and 24dB slopes. It is built using quality components (including Jantzen coils) onto heavily plated PCBs.