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Fluance XL7F Loudspeakers Review Print E-mail
Friday, 24 April 2015
Article Index
Fluance XL7F Loudspeakers Review
Set Up and Listening

Set Up & Listening

I used the XL7Fs with three different amplifiers. First, and a bit perversely, with the $6000 McIntosh MA6600 integrated. Secondly, with the just reviewed $599 Denon PMA-50. And lastly, with a DAL Audio gain clone power amp and Belles Soloist 3 preamp combo. Sources were the Simaudio MiND 180D streamer and Musical Fidelity V90 DAC. Cabling was Transparent, DH Labs, and Stager.

fluance_xl7f_loudspeakers_logo.jpgThe XL7F is the least expensive speaker I have had in any of my systems, apart from desktop computer monitors. I was not sure what to expect when i fired up the McIntosh and started streaming tunes. I need not have worried. The presentation was coherent and spacious, and timing was spot on. Without question, any major shortcomings would have been easily exposed by an amp as good as the MA6600, or with very high quality source material.

I was especially impressed with two things. First, the way voices sounded, and, secondly, how good instrument imaging and spacing were. Tracks from Seal’s acoustic re-recordings of his classic hits from the bonus disc of Best: 1991-2004 had wonderful delicacy when called for, and very good controlled energy when things picked up. At this point, I was able to determine the XL7F's bass was deep, taught, articulate, and a bit on the warm side (enjoyably so).

At this point I moved on to the Denon PMA-50 and DAL gainclone amp because these are more in line with Fluance pricing and a more realistic pairing. The musical presentation with these amps paired to the XL7F was highly engaging. These amps may cost one tenth of the McIntosh but they are well designed, with short signal paths.


I listened to a load of Bernie Grundman mastered 24 bit, 192 Khz Blue Note albums, and was delighted with the nuances I heard on these classic recordings. Milt Jackson’s Sunflower sounded delicious, with his vibes having a really nice bell-like tone. I also thoroughly enjoyed Dexter Gordon’s One Flight Up. The horns and piano had nice tone, and timbres were accurate. The music had a realistic weight to it that made the recordings sound like real performances.

With the recent passing of guitar genius John Renbourn, I listened to a good part of his discography, which is uniformly well recorded. Renbourn’s music requires speakers that can replicate acoustic textures correctly, and the XL7F did not falter. I listened for days without being distracted by any additive or subtractive qualities.



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