Perlisten Audio S Series 7.1 Speaker System Review Page 2

But let's cut to the chase. Dom and Brian steal the Lykan Hypersport, which here has an engine sound that's the complete opposite of my Vauxhall Zafira. It squeals to a halt on a marble floor; the Perlisten system's sound decaying beautifully, leaving just the gentle purr of the engine. All hell then breaks loose when Jason Statham arrives, the soundmix awash with effects, yet the balance between the seven cabinets sounding spot on.

When our heroes drive out of the window (natch), the mix crescendos and the subwoofer lunges deep, but then we're in mid-air with nothing but the sound of air whistling past our ears. This is a wraparound effect – and a jaw-dropping moment – that this system absolutely nails, helped by the seamless, clear sound created by that DPC array in all corners.


The D12s's 12in carbon fibre driver is powered by a 1.5kW amplifier

This Is The Moment
Although this scene left me feeling I had an understanding of the system's strengths, further discs revealed more. The Greatest Showman (Blu-ray), and it's bassy DTS-HD MA track, brought the skill of the D12s sub, and the big-sounding nature of the speakers (I later ran the S5ms in stereo for music and their low-end depth and control was sublime) to the fore. You know the scene – a foot-stomping audience and Hugh Jackman's circus master warbling away. The bass weight of the D12s, its room-filling output and its ability to stop on a dime with no hint of overhang leaves me wondering how Perlisten's 15-inchers could better it. Meanwhile, Jackman's '...this is the moment you've been waiting for' punches clean through, the S7c centre proving a master of crisp, naturalistic-sounding dialogue.

In the film's quieter scenes, it's the smallscale stuff that leaves a big impression. The resolving power of these beryllium tweeters is something to hear, as is the system's delicate handling and positioning of the most minute of cues. And, again, it's the way this performance sounds so natural and effortless that's the real eye-opener.

Perlisten's subwoofer app includes EQ presets for THX, 'small room' and 'large room'

Returning to bombast with Bad Boys For Life (4K BD), I became aware of how this flatbed system still seemed able to create a soundstage with notable height (perhaps helped by the S4s's slightly angled baffle when used as a surround model). At the beginning of the abandoned hotel lobby scene, as I sat surrounded by creaking doors and fluttering birds in a large, echoing space, I was reminded that you don't always need Atmos to create atmosphere...

There's nothing negative I can find to say about this Perlisten setup. Its sound is large and enveloping, thrillingly energetic and attacking when needed, yet capable of control, subtlety and glorious detail.

The good news for those not shopping at this premium level is that a more affordable R Series is incoming (still with the patent-pending DPC array), and you can build an S Series for less, making use of its bookshelf S4b models in place of the monitors. But for those preparing to invest in a high-end, high-performance array, these simply have to be auditioned n

HCC Verdict

Perlisten Audio S Series 7.1

Price:  £34,375

We say: A 7.1 system with the astonishing performance you'd expect given the price tag. The sound here is a dizzying mix of detail, power, scale, and immersion. Worth saving up for...

Overall: 5/5


DRIVE UNITS: 1 x 28mm beryllium tweeter; 2 x 28mm Textreme mid-range; 2 x 7in Textreme woofers ENCLOSURE: Bass reflex/sealed Freq. resp (claimed): 35Hz-37kHz (reflex); 71Hz-37kHz (sealed) SENSITIVITY (claimed): 89.6dB Impedance (Claimed): 4ohm (nominal) POWER HANDLING (claimed): 300W DIMENSIONS: 600(h) x 240(w) x 400(d)mm WEIGHT: 19kg

DRIVE UNITS: 1 x 28mm tweeter; 2 x 28mm mid-range; 4 x 7in woofers ENCLOSURE: Sealed Freq. resp. (claimed): 38Hz-37kHz SENSITIVITY (claimed): 92dB Impedance (Claimed): 4ohm (nominal) POWER HANDLING (claimed): 600W DIMENSIONS: 240(h) x 960(w) x 400(d)mm WEIGHT: 33.5kg

DRIVE UNITS: 1 x 28mm tweeter; 2 x 28mm mid-range; 1 x 6in woofer ENCLOSURE: Sealed Freq. resp. (claimed): 39Hz-37kHz SENSITIVITY (claimed): 89.6dB Impedance (Claimed): 4ohm (nominal) POWER HANDLING (claimed): 300W DIMENSIONS: 405(h) x 240(w) x 185(d)mm WEIGHT: 9.5kg

D12s (subwoofer)
DRIVE UNITS: 1 x 12in carbon fibre woofer ENCLOSURE: Sealed ONBOARD POWER (CLAIMED): 1,500W ('short term' RMS) Freq. Resp. 20Hz-289Hz (-6dB) REMOTE CONTROL: No. App/LCD touchscreen DIMENSIONS: 448(h) x 420(w) x 450(d)mm WEIGHT: 41kg FEATURES: XLR and RCA input/output; 10-band parametric EQ with three user presets; control/EQ app; 12V trigger; Auto-On; variable phase/crossover

Perlisten Audio