What are the Q Acoustics Concept 500?
Q Acoustics has been constructing well-respected funds audio system for a decade now, however the Concept 500 is the showcase for what the corporate can do when the gloves are off. These are high-end floorstanders, aiming to blow your socks off with their sound high quality.
Considering their value, you may nicely scoff at this, however the Concept 500 additionally look to symbolize Q Acoustics’ typical good worth for cash. And they succeed.
The Q Acoustics Concept 500 begin at £3600 with a plain white or black gloss end, whereas duo-tone finishes of black gloss with rosewood veneer or white gloss with oak veneer weigh in at £4000.
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Q Acoustics Concept 500 – Design and options
The design of the Concept 500 is unmistakably Q Acoustics, with these generously radiused corners and a D’Appolito driver configuration – in different phrases, the 28mm soft-dome tweeter is sat between a pair of equivalent 16.5cm paper woofers.
Build high quality and ending is a giant step up from the extra budget-friendly Q Acoustics fashions, nevertheless. The duo-tone fashions, specifically, are merely gorgeous – that stylish rear veneer actually units them other than different floorstanders of their value vary.
The cupboards use the identical Gelcore building as beforehand seen on different Q Acoustics fashions. This entails a gel that by no means units, sandwiched between two layers of MDF for a unprecedented degree of deadening. Substantial point-to-point bracing retains all of it stiff, whereas Helmholtz strain equalisers are positioned inside to additional decreased resonance. And that is all sat on a gorgeously sculpted solid aluminium plinth.
Around the rear, you’ll discover a set of bi-wireable 4mm speaker terminals on the backside, with a big bass port above.
There’s a second panel, too, for tweaking the treble +/-Zero.5dB. In my room and setup, they appeared happiest left on the impartial setting.
Q Acoustics Concept 500 – Sound high quality
I examined the Concept 500 principally hooked as much as a Leema Acoustics Tucana II Anniversary Edition amp by means of Atlas Mavros cables. For sources I used a Clearaudio Performance DC turntable and a laptop computer through a Chord Hugo DAC.
The Concept 500 are a type of pairs of audio system that, as quickly as you begin taking part in one thing – something – by means of them, your eyes open somewhat wider. It takes only some hours of not utilizing a high-end hi-fi system on your flawed human mind to neglect simply how good music can sound. And it doesn’t sound a lot better than this.
The readability and scale of the soundstage woven by the Concept 500 is staggering. It’s immense, detailed and candy. It’s lovely.
Playing one thing mild and acoustic, comparable to Josh Ritter’s ‘Wings’, these audio system sweep you up and caress you with a deftness of contact and intimacy that you simply solely actually get whenever you’re into the audiophile stratosphere, spending the identical quantity as you’ll on a brand new automobile.
With tracks which can be somewhat extra sweeping, comparable to ‘Master and a Hound’ from Gregory Alan Isakov with the Colorado Symphony, the separation and scale is breathtaking. There’s a lot texture and such an ideal tonal stability. It’s nearly flawless.
Even the underside finish is fantastically tuned. It’s deep and taut, simply appropriately. You’ll wish to give that rear-facing bass port loads of room to breathe, although – I’d attempt to maintain them a minimum of a foot and a half from a wall.
What you may recognize is that the Concept 500 sound good even at decrease quantity ranges. This isn’t typically the case with high-end audio system, which normally want dialling up a good whack earlier than they actually begin to sing.
You received’t have an excessive amount of bother driving them, both, for the reason that 90dB sensitivity makes them a simple load for even probably the most modest amps. The crystal-clear Leema proved to be an ideal match.
The solely disgrace is that Q Acoustics hasn’t but produced a standmounted model with a smaller cupboard, for many who perhaps don’t have such a big listening room.
Why purchase the Q Acoustics Concept 500?
For the cash, there are not any higher floorstanding audio system you should purchase. In reality, you’d should spend hundreds extra for any enchancment – and even then you definitely may solely see enchancment in sure areas.
Offering further scale however much less space-friendly cupboards, the Tannoy Legacy Arden are actually superior however price £6400. For the sweetest treble I’ve ever heard however smaller scale, you could possibly strive the standmounted Focal Sopra No.1 at £5999 – the floorstanding Sopra No.2 clock in at an eye-watering £9999.
The nearest competitor in value and sound are most likely the B&W 702 S2, however they’ll’t contact the Concept 500 for scale – and so they sound somewhat too chilly and scientific.
As a end result, the Q Acoustics Concept 500 are an actual hi-fi steal.
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Despite their excessive value, the Concept 500 are one among hi-fi’s best bargains.