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Loudspeakers | stand-mount

Xavian Prague

Manufacturer: XAVIAN ELECTRONICS s.r.o.
Price (in Poland): 2020 EUR/pair

Za Mlýnem 114
253 01 Hostivice – Prague


Provided for test by: XAVIAN PRAGUE


The founder of XAVIAN, Mr. ROBERTO BARLETTA, was born in Turin, Northern Italy. In 1989, he shocked the school's examination board with his design of a Class A audio amplifier. Still the same year, Roberto started working for one of the Italian companies manufacturing loudspeakers and power amplifiers. In 1994, he decided to move to Prague. After two years of uneasy "acclimatization", he founded Xavian. Its name comes from Greek mythology - "Xavian" is a holy place for muses, considered a source of inspiration. source: Genesis of a myth. Our story,

he XAVIAN Quarta loudspeakers (HF | № 191) were the hit of the 2020 Prague Show, one of the last audio shows that took place before the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic. These are large, three-way monitors, and the term 'monitor' in this case means the same as it did to BBC engineers designing their loudspeakers intended for recording studios. And this is also the "background" of the Quatra loudspeakers, which directly refer to the largest BBC speakers, including the Harbeth M40.1, which I’ve been using for years.

While this model took the spotlight, another premieres took place too - the slightly smaller Terza speakers and almost unnoticed, the small Corallo Esclusivo. Although beautiful, all in wood, with solutions taken from the company's flagship speakers, although referring to Italian models, they were too small to "break through" in the media coverage.


I guess, you’ll agree with me when I say that they are beautiful. These are medium-sized, fantastically well-made stand-mount speakers, belonging to the "Natura" series. Apart from them, there are three other bookshelf speakers - the cheaper Perla Esclusiva (HF | № 176), the more expensive Madra Esclusiva and the Premio Esclusivo, as well as two floor-standers, Madre Perla and Stella.

Owner, designer

Roberto Barletta on a mountain trail.

WOJCIECH PACUŁA: Who are these speakers meant for?
ROBERTO BARLETTA: Corallo Esclusivo is intended for smaller listening rooms, above all when one has to place speakers close to the wall or on book-shelves. The depth of its cabinet is quite small to make the installation as simple as possible. A well made sealed system usually fits better in spaces with booming bass or smaller spaces or highly damped spaces in general.

WP: Who designed the Corallo Esclusivo?
RB: Corallo Esclusivo is a project developed completely by me, from cabinet design to crossover and all the other details.

WP: How is it different from the Perla Esclusiva we tested before? They seem quite similar?
RB: Perla Esclusiva is a bass-reflex speaker with smaller mid-woofer, a completely different concept. Both Perla and Corallo use a crossover in series. In the case of Corallo the tweeter is filtered at lower frequencies since it is a 29 mm soft dome with lower resonance frequency. Corallo bass frequency response has a 12 dB/octave behaviour, Perla has 18 dB / octave. They are different for different customers and different applications.

WP: Could you explain connection between Xavian and Barletta Audio brands?
RB: AudioBarletta is my own registered brand of drivers we’ve been making in Italy already for 5 years. They are made completely to our specifications. We choose membrane, voice coil, suspensions, spiders, magnets, copper cups and all the other iron parts of the magnetic „motor". It is the dream of each audio engineer to create his own brand of drivers. Membranes and domes come above all from traditional German manufacturer Mueller who is actually offering the best of the materials and solutions in Europe.

At this point Xavian is almost totally independent since we made practically everything by ourselves in our 1200 m2 factory: cabinets, lacquering, crossovers, reflex ports, quality controls, packaging, development. Everything is made "under one roof" with my daily presence. We are making necessary steps to trade the brand AudioBarletta to other companies that need high quality matched drivers, available from our stock in the centre of Europe. RB

CORALLO ESCLUSIVO are two-way loudspeakers, which utilize a 29 mm soft dome and a 175 mm coated paper mid-woofer, both designed by AudioBarletta, the sister company of Xavian Prague. Needless to say, they're great drivers, with heavy, rigid, die-cast aluminum-magnesium alloy baskets.

The tweeter (D29/110LAB) uses a large cup on the back of the diaphragm, which lowers the resonance frequency of the system, and the mid-woofer (18W/PA38AP) uses a stationary aluminum phase cone that smooths the phase at the upper edge of the frequency range. Its special feature is the double fold of the suspension, reminiscent of the suspension of old, high-efficiency drivers. Both drivers are made in Italy.

The crossover point is set at 2500 Hz, and the manufacturer claims the impedance is "8 Ω". As we said, with the closed-enclosure design there is no bass-reflex support in bass range reproduction - the frequency response starts at 59 Hz (-3 dB). On the other hand, we get a fast, uncolored bass.

The speakers measure 230 x 236 x 355 mm, so they are really neat. They are also heavy - the weight of 10 kg comes from the wood used for their cabinet. Enclosures are available in several finishes, including white and black varnishes. We are testing the latest version in "Cognac Oak" veneer.

Crossover | To further help with the integration of the drivers, a crossover of a proprietary concept called "Zero Phase", ie with minimized phase shifts, was used in these loudspeakers. It was mounted on a PCB using high quality passive components, such as air coils and Mundorf "Evo" series capacitors with aluminum cladding; the third polypropylene capacitor features a Xavian sticker. The crossovers are bolted to the rear panel, not directly, but on a "cushion" made of unpressed felt, which dampens vibrations coming from the housing and from the air compressed inside.

This is a truly original concept, which shows not only in the brand’s own cabinets and drivers, but also in small details, like the name of the company placed not only on the nice, gold-plated speaker terminals, but even on the screws fixing the drivers.

Stands | You can buy additionally really nice, solid stands with matching colors to the speakers. They consist of two plinths made of MDF, connected by a heavy, solid column, with its core made of MDF, and the outer layer of the same wood as the speaker’s cabinet. The stands feature flat feet with felt pads, and their height can be adjusted from the top (very comfortable to use) to level the stand. An important fact - the loudspeakers feature inserts glued into the bottom of each cabinet that can be used to screw speaker and stand together. This is a "patent" used once in the Sonus faber loudspeakers, and then in many others.


The Xavian speakers played in the "High Fidelity" reference system and were compared to the Harbeth M40.1. They were driven by the Soulution 710 power amplifier via Siltech Triple Crown cables. The speakers and me together we formed an isosceles triangle with a side length of 220 mm (from the tweeters), with their axes intersecting on my head. They were placed quite far from the wall behind them - almost 100 mm (counting from the rear panel) - but I didn't feel that it had any negative influence on the performance. However, you need to know that they have been designed to work close to a hard surface - bringing them closer to the wall behind them will gain an even greater volume of sound and a richer mid-bass.

XAVIAN in „High Fidelity”
  • TEST: Xavian PERLA ESCLUSIVA | loudspeakers
  • TEST: Xavian PERLA | loudspeakers
  • TEST: Xavian EPICA CALLIOPE | loudspeakers
  • TEST: Xavian XN250 EVO | loudspeakers
  • TEST: Xavian PRIMISSIMA | loudspeakers
  • TEST: Xavian XN 125 EVOLUZIONE | loudspeakers
  • TEST: Xavian XC SERIES DUETTO | loudspeakers
  • TEST: Xavian MIA | loudspeakers
  • TEST: Xavian XN 125 + XN 185 Mk II | loudspeakers
  • TEST: Xavian GIULIA | loudspeakers

  • Recordings used for the test (a selec- tion):

    • Benny Goodman Orchestra feat. Anita O’Day, BigBands Live, Arthaus Musik101732, 180 g LP (2013)
    • Count Basie And His Orchestra + Neal Hefti , Basie, Roulette/Nippon Columbia YW-7508-RO, „Roulette Jazz Library | No. 8”, LP (1958/1978)
    • Dead Can Dance, Anastasis, [PIAS] Recordings PIASR311DLP, 2 x 180 g Green Wax LP (2016)
    • Nat ‘King’ Cole and his Trio, After Midnight – Complete Session, Capitol/Analogue Productions APP 740-45, 3 x 180 g 45 rpm LP (1957/2010)
    • Nat ‘King’ Cole, Just One Of Those Things, Capitol Records/S&P Records S&P-508, „Limited Edition | 0886”, 180 g LP (1957/2004)
    • Peter Gabriel, New Blood, Realworld 67855216/PGLP13, 2 x 180 g LP + heavy weight 7" SP (2011)

    Let's get it out of the way - closed-enclosure speakers are less impressive than bass-reflex ones. At least initially and in most cases. The thing is that the bass-reflex, well-designed bass-reflex, boosts the bass, and thus enlarges the sound image, adding a kind of energetic "boost" to the presentation, as if there were cans with Red Bull inside cabinets. This is not a rule curved in stone, but a rule so common that we can talk about a kind of a "sonic signature" of a design in which the woofer or mid-woofer works in the bass-reflex system.

    In contrast, loudspeakers with a closed cabinet seem bland at first. They seem less expressive, there is no "boost" I’ve just mentioned. It may seem that we are not served energy drink, but a homemade lemonade. One needs some experience to appreciate that type of presentation. Because this is where their (closed cabinet speakers) strength lies - they usually present a much more dynamic and better differentiated sound. It comes at a cost of lesser bass extension and, to some extent, also with smaller volume of the sound.

    We will appreciate their advantages not during a short demo, but in longer listening sessions. That is why it is so difficult to sell them in audio stores where the "flow" of customers counts. Their presentation requires high quality electronics, good recordings and time. So high power amplifiers are preferred, as well as recordings with a lot of "music" in them. If we meet these assumptions, then we will get something like from the tested Roberto Barletta loudspeakers: amazing dynamics, great coherence, high transparency - and therefore differentiation - as well as a presentation that is truly „relaxed”.

    These are loudspeakers designed for the presentation of vocals in particular. But I think we got used to it. Italian and this type of designs have something to them that makes the vocals large, dense and convincing. In my case, it was exactly like that - both with the Nat "King" Cole and with Peter Gabriel. The acoustic and classical guitars sounded also great, with a sonorous attack and proper richness. The decay phase is shortened a bit, but you can't have everything. It may be slightly shortened but not so much, however, so that the reverb superimposed on Count Basie's piano on the Basie album was not well audible not only behind him, i.e. in the left channel, but also in the right one.

    I’ve mentioned Basie's orchestra not only because it is a good example of the extraordinary dynamics, especially of the wind section, but because after some time with Xavian's speakers we feel like listening to recordings that sometimes seem too shrill, too dynamically flat, etc. with other speakers. With the Corallo Esclusivo, this veil disappears and it turns out that the shrillness is simply the energy of the treble, and the lack of dynamics was caused by compression introduced by the loudspeakers. With Xavians it is as if someone had turned this compression off and the quiet sounds are quiet while the loud ones are really loud.

    Of course, these are not loudspeakers that would surprise you with a low bass extension. Dead Can Dance from the album Anastasis sounded dynamic, strong, nice, but it did not have quite the power that we get with even small loudspeakers, but ones of a bass-reflex design. In the sound of this album other elements are emphasized, such as energy, tightness and flawless focus. Because the Xavians sound perfectly coherent. And maybe that's why, right after Basie's disc, I listened to Benny Goodman orchestra’s recordings, and then also to Peter Gabriel's orchestral album the New Blood, wanting to feel the fullness, expression and power of a large orchestra.

    The latter one included Gabriel's greatest hits, but recorded with a symphonic orchestra - the sticker on the foil read: "Recorded with full orchestra - no guitar or drum kit". An interesting feature of this release is an additional disc, a 7” Picture Disc single, pressed on a heavy vinyl, with the song Solsbury Hill. Anyway, same as the swing orchestras before, also now the large symphonic orchestra sounded great with the Xavians, with no timing issues, no brightness and presented in a perfectly orderly way. That’s something that only much more expensive bass-reflex loudspeakers can do.


    These are not loudspeakers that sound warm, yet they perfectly convey the expression of the human voice, the nuances of acoustic and classical guitars, they perfectly present the performance of a double bass, mainly due to the fact that they can reproduce higher harmonics in "harmony" with the basic sound. While the smaller, bass-reflex model Perla Esclusiva was closer to the Sonus faber Minima Vintage, the Corallo Esclusivo is similar in its tonality to the Minima Amator (I) of the same brand.

    These are open, incredibly dynamic, precise loudspeakers that can show a large volume of sound - this is why swing orchestras and symphonic orchestras sounded so good, so engaging with them. They do not even out the sound of individual albums, so worse recorded ones will not sound as good as the good ones. But there is nothing to worry about, because these are not speakers that would "take" the sound apart without knowing how to put it back together. They propose a large, dense, well-balanced presentation with high dynamics. In addition, we are talking about beautifully crafted objects.

    Technical specification (according to the manufacturer)

    Mid- low-woofer: ø 175mm
    Tweeter: ø 29mm
    Cabinet: closed
    Frequency range: 59 – 20 000Hz (-3 dB on axis)
    Nominal impedance: 8Ω
    Crossover frequency: 2500Hz
    Sensitivity: 87dB (2.83V / 1m)
    Recommended amplifier: 30 - 120W
    Dimensions (W x H x D): 355 x 230 x 236mm
    Weight: 10kg / pc.


    Reference system 2020

    1) Loudspeakers: HARBETH M40.1 |REVIEW|
    2) Line preamplifier: AYON AUDIO Spheris III Linestage |REVIEW|
    3) Super Audio CD Player: AYON AUDIO CD-35 HF Edition No. 01/50 |REVIEW|
    4) Stands (loudspeakers): ACOUSTIC REVIVE (custom) |ABOUT|
    5) Power amplifier: SOULUTION 710
    6) Loudspeaker filter: SPEC REAL-SOUND PROCESSOR RSP-AZ9EX (prototype) |REVIEW|
    7) Hi-Fi rack: FINITE ELEMENTE Pagode Edition |ABOUT|


    Analog interconnect SACD Player - Line preamplifier: SILTECH Triple Crown (1 m) |ABOUT|
    Analog interconnect Line preamplifier - Power amplifier: ACOUSTIC REVIVE RCA-1.0 Absolute-FM (1 m) |REVIEW|
    Speaker cable: SILTECH Triple Crown (2.5 m) |ABOUT|

    AC Power

    Power cable | Mains Power Distribution Block - SACD Player: SILTECH Triple Crown
    Power (2 m) |ARTICLE|
    Power cable | Mains Power Distribution Block - Line preamplifier - ACOUSTIC REVIVE
    Power Reference Triple-C (2 m) |REVIEW|
    Power cable | Mains Power Distribution Block - Power amplifier - ACROLINK Mexcel 7N-PC9500 |ARTICLE|
    Power cable | Power Receptacle - Mains Power Distribution Block: ACROLINK Mexcel 7N-PC9500 (2 m) |ARTICLE|
    Power Receptacle: Acoustic Revive RTP-4eu ULTIMATE |REVIEW|
    Anti-vibration platform under Acoustic Revive RTP-4eu ULTIMATE: Asura QUALITY RECOVERY SYSTEM Level 1 |REVIEW|
    Power Supply Conditioner: Acoustic Revive RPC-1 |REVIEW|
    Power Supply Conditioner: Acoustic Revive RAS-14 Triple-C |REVIEW|
    Passive filter EMI/RFI: VERICTUM Block |REVIEW|


    Speaker stands: ACOUSTIC REVIVE (custom)
    Hi-Fi rack: FINITE ELEMENTE Pagode Edition |ABOUT|
    Anti-vibration platforms: ACOUSTIC REVIVE RAF-48H |ARTICLE|

    • HARMONIX TU-666M "BeauTone" MILLION MAESTRO 20th Anniversary Edition |REVIEW|


    Phono preamplifier: Phono cartridges: Tonearm (12"): Reed 3P |REVIEW|

    Clamp: PATHE WINGS Titanium PW-Ti 770 | Limited Edition

    Record mats:


    Headphone amplifier: AYON AUDIO HA-3 |REVIEW|

    Headphones: Headphone Cables: Forza AudioWorks NOIR HYBRID HPC