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LOUDSPEAKERS ⸜ floorstanding

Avatar Audio

Manufacturer: AVATAR AUDIO
Price (in Poland): 33 400 PLN/pair

16-010 Osowicze 64a | POLSKA



Provided for test by: AVATAR AUDIO


translation Marek Dyba
images Wojciech Pacuła

No 218

July 1, 2022

AVATAR AUDIO is a company run by CEZARIUSZ ANDREJCZUK, and its core offer consists of loudspeakers. Their design differs from the solutions commonly used today, although - from the technical point of view - there is nothing unusual about them. These are ideas from the 1950s-70s. taken to the extreme. We are testing the model Numer 2, version III.

HILE CZAREK WAS SETTING UP HIS NEW SPEAKERS in my room, we had some time to talk. Of course, there were also remarks about the barbarism of the Russians and comments about the "state of the world", but most of the time we discussed the changes that converted the HOLOPHONY NUMER 2 loudspeakers from the MK II version to MK III.

First thing that their designer said, "sets up" the whole test that I prepared for you: „These are actually the same loudspeakers, but with a redesigned crossover ”. And he added: "But this redesign is not just about replacing some components and changing some concepts, but about hundreds of hours of testing and trials resulting in more and more precise 'tuning' of their sound." Probably no other company would do something like that, and even if it did by some miracle, they would not give their design a new number, because "from the marketing point of view, they would not have a way of «selling» it".

However, Avatar Audio is not a company like all the others. Its designs are based on paper, conical drivers, which are extremely sensitive to even minor changes in the signal’s path, and additionally they operate in a wide range, significantly overlapping one another. Cezariusz is their devoted fan and lover, because he believes that only these types of drivers are able to reproduce the subtleties of a musical signal in a way that would satisfy him.

From time to time, he introduces major changes to his designs, such as replacing the cabinets made of MDF boards covered with flock to those made of bamboo plywood. Even then, these are are evolutionary changes, never revolutionary ones. The goal was clear to him from the very beginning and he has been implementing it for several years. In this respect he reminds me of some Japanese artisans who can "see" the results before they even start working. And the work they do is just another attempt to "extract" a given shape.

Holophony Numer 2 III

TAKING ALL THAT INTO CONSIDERATION it should come as no surprise that although the first Avatar Audio loudspeakers test took place almost exactly ten years ago, we are dealing with the continuation of the same ideas. The company's lineup includes four models, as part of the HOLOPHONY series: Numer 4 III, Numer 3 III, Numer 2 III and the top one named Numer 1 III.

Model Numer 2 III is a new version of the loudspeakers we’ve known for ten years, and the version we know today has been with us since from 2016. The breakthrough, so to speak, was NUMER 2 Mk2, which differed from its predecessor - as the designer said at the time - with a radically improved crossover and improved working conditions for the woofer:

“The next thousands of hours of work on the equalization of the crossover bandwidth brought a spectacular effect: enlargement of the sound stage along with the increased precision of the placement and separation of phantom images, color saturation, increase in resolution and micro-dynamics. As the crossover is responsible for at least 2/3 of the sound quality of the loudspeakers, the Mark II version can be considered a new Holophony model ”.

The Numer 2 III goes even further in terms of precision of the crossover. As for the smaller changes, attention should be paid to the new, Taiwan-made speaker terminals made of gold-plated, pure copper. These are quite large, two-piece, three-way floorstanders. They are composed of two modules: the woofer and the midrange-treble one, in which they resemble the concept of the American manufacturer Wilson Audio with the Watt/Puppy loudspeakers.

⸜ DRIVERS The Avatar Audio loudspeakers are based, as we said, not on modern drivers, but on old models from the 1950s and 1960s with uncoated paper membranes. The speakers in question use NOS drivers with diameters of 100, 200 and 300 mm (respectively: tweeter, midrange and bass). The upper module houses the first two, the lower one, the large one - a bass driver. The cabinets are made of bamboo plywood and modeled to minimize wave bending at the edges. The whole looks very chic and stylish.

⸜ CONNECTIONS All electrical connections in the tested speakers were made without soldering, so no tin, but rather using crimping. At the back of each module there are speaker terminals - separate for low tones and for the band above. For the purposes of the test, they were connected with short lengths of copper braid.

In addition, there are also individual terminals, separate for each driver. They connect to the drivers’ baskets. This type of grounding has been used by the Tannoy for years, and the effectiveness of this solution has also been confirmed by Cezariusz. They can be connected to ground or to an artificial ground; the manufacturer uses small elements that fulfill a similar role.

⸜ FEET The loudspeakers feature special feet, which can also be purchased separately. These are two aluminum elements separated by a neodymium magnet with two additional levels of vibration damping: three balls of hard material, decoupling the two parts from each other, supporting each other on a magnetic cushion and a medium-hard material at the bottom and top of the feet. Similar bases, but smaller, separate the woofer module from the mid-treble module. This type of feet are also used by Avatar Audio in their anti-vibration platforms, for example in the RECEPTOR NUMER 3 |PL|.

⸜ BASS-REFLEX The mid-tweeter module is a closed cabinet, and the low-range uses a vented one (bass-reflex). In the set we get a plug that can be used to close the bass-reflex port. The choice depends on the user, but it is worth knowing that the designer prefers the "closed" version.

Summing up: these are large speakers, weighing 35 kg (pcs) and measuring 1160 x 350 x 480 mm. The loudspeakers are delivered in three neat boxes made of MDF boards and are covered by a three-year manufacturer's warranty. They look very nice.


˻ HOW WE LISTENED The Avatar Audio Holophony Number 2 III loudspeakers were tested in the HIGH FIDELITY reference system. In this case, I used both the amplifier I use every day, i.e. the separates - Ayon Audio Spheris III tube preamplifier and the Soulution 710 solid-state power amplifier, as well as the Leben CS600X integrated tube amplifier.

⸜ CEZARIUSZ ANDREJCZUK after completing his loudspeakers’ setup at "High Fidelity”

The speakers were placed at a distance of 246 cm from the listening position and 255 cm from each other, counting from their vertical axis. They were located at a distance of 83 cm from the back wall, also from their axis and from the back wall of the woofer module (measurements were made with a Bosch PLR 50 C laser meter). They were connected with the Soulution 710 by the Siltech Triple Crown cable, and with the Leben by the NOS Western Electric cable from the 1940s (tinned copper, twisted pair in a cotton sleeve). The loudspeakers were pointing directly at the listening position.

˻ Recordings used for the test | a selection

⸜ MILES DAVIS QUINTET, Relaxin’ With The Miles Davis Quintet, Prestige/Universal Music LLC (Japan) UCCO-40005, Platinum SHM-CD, (1958/2013)
⸜ MILES DAVIS QUINTET, Cookin' with the Miles Davis Quintet, Prestige Records/Victor Entertainment VICJ-60127, XRCD (1956/1998).
⸜ MILES DAVIS QUINTET, Steamin’ with the Miles Davis Quintet, Prestige Records/Victor Entertainment VICJ-60128, XRCD (1961/1998).
⸜ Dr. LONNIE SMITH, All In My Mind, Blue Note, Promo CD-R (2020).
⸜ JOHANN SEBASTIAN BACH, Brandenburg Concertos / Concertos BWV 1055 & 1060, wyk. Münchener Bach-Orchester, dyr. Karl Richter, Archiv Production/Universal Music LLC UCGA-9002, SHM-SACD (1968/2011).
Polish Pianism, Core Port RPOZ-10037, CD (2017).

⸜ BILLIE EILISH, No Time To Die, Darkroom | Interscope Records/Tidal Master, SP, FLAC MQA 24/44,1 (2020).
⸜ GEORGE HARRISON, All Things Must Pass (50th Anniversary), Apple Records/Universal Music/Tidal Master, FLAC MQA 24/192 (1970/2021).
⸜ THE BEATLES, Let It Be (50th Anniversary), Apple Records | Universal Music Catalogue/Tidal Master, Super Deluxe Edition, FLAC MQA 24/96 (1970/2021).
⸜ BILLIE HOLIDAY, Body and Soul, PolyGram/Tidal Master, FLAC MQA 24/192 (1957/?).
⸜ SEASICK STEVE, Blues In Mono, There's A Dead Skunk Records/Tidal Master, FLAC MQA Studio 24/44,1 (2020).


AS IT WAS ALREADY SAID, I tested the Avatar Audio loudspeakers for the first time ten years ago. I decided that it is a very interesting brand offering solutions rarely found today. The resulting sound differed significantly from everything else on the market. So much so that you had to get used to it and "reorient" your expectations. However, this reorientation meant that if we liked the effect, the return to other design types was painful.

As soon as the loudspeakers were set up by the designer, I heard from him: "I think I'm getting really close to my goal ..." From him it meant more than solemn assurances of "perfect sound" coming from other manufacturers. And in practice it means that the Holophony Numer 2 III sound great - that's one thing - and that you don't have to give up your habits to enjoy their sound. These are designs that still propose their own vision of sound, but this vision is so refined that it would be tactless to call it "different".

The thing is that the presentation of the tested designs is absolutely, flawlessly smooth and even. Comparing them with large reference speakers, we will obviously hear lower energy of the lowest and highest tones. However, it doesn't really matter, because with such high resolution and speed, adding anything would break the illusion of communing with a live event.

And this is how I perceived it first listening to classics from the JOHANN SEBASTIAN BACH’S Brandenburg Concerts conducted by Karl Richter, and then jazz from Relaxin', Cookin' and finally Steamin' by MILES DAVIS QUINTET. Recorded - along with the fourth one, entitled Workin’ - in two sessions on May 11th and October 26th, 1956, they are one of the best examples of a variety of jazz called "hard bop".

I listened to them using different releases and I enjoyed them a lot. This is because the Avatar loudspeakers played them with full commitment, so I had a sound characteristic of recordings from that period, but also because the sound was so - sorry, but I have to use this word - relaxed. Not - boring, not lacking involvement, but just relaxed.

There was a deep soundstage here and very well set timbre. But it was speed combined with harmonic saturation that made the perception so emotionally satisfying. And I have not mentioned that the loudspeakers are also very selective and detailed, while they seem almost silky, as if the sound attack was warm. And it is not warm, this is not a good word to describe what we get with them. Despite the fact that I was driving them with an ultra-neutral high-power transistor amplifier.

| Our albums

Cookin'…, Relaxin’…, Workin’…, Steamin' with the Miles Davis Quintet

Prestige Records ⸜ 1956

In the summer of 1955, shortly after the Newport Jazz Festival MILES DAVIS received an offer from George Avakian, who on behalf of Columbia Records offered him a new contract on the condition that the musician formed a regular band. Davis agreed and with the intention of moving from Prestige Records to Columbia, he founded a new quintet, which included later jazz giants: saxophonist SONNY ROLLINS, pianist RED GARLAND, double bassist PAUL CHAMBERS and drummer PHILLY JOE JONES.

In order to fulfill the contract with Prestige as soon as possible, the band entered Rudy Van Gelder's studio in Hackensack and in two sessions, on May 11th and October 26th, 1956, recorded over twenty tracks, which were then released on four albums: Cookin'… in August 1957, Relaxin’… in March 1958, Workin’… in January 1960 and finally Steamin' with the Miles Davis Quintet in August 1961.

Although it was a material intended to free Davis from the contract, it turned out to be a fantastic example of hard bop with musicians in top form, and with great sound; all the discs were recorded in mono. These two elements have made them regularly reissued in all possible formats. This time I will tell you which digital editions are worth paying attention to.

In 1998, all four were released by the Japanese company Victor Entertainment on XRCD discs. The original master tapes were remastered at A&M Studios by ALAN YOSHIDA, who is the "father" of the K2 system. And the K2 is a special A/D converter, a mastering system and a method of cutting out the glass matrix. In this case, the mastering system was analog. You can buy them without thinking twice about it.

In 2002, another version of these albums was released in the US. The remaster was made in 1984 or 1985, so it was ahead of the XRCD, and the signal was recorded on a digital reel-to-reel tape recorder. Also in this case, the material was remastered at JVC Studios, but by another engineer - SHIGEO MIYAMATO - and in a different technique. The cover and the disc itself bear the proud logo of "20bit K2 Super Coding", part of the XRCD technology. In fact, only a few elements of the K2 system were used, and the remaster is digital and was made using the JVC DAS-900 mastering system. I advise against this version, for some reason it sounds flat and not very dynamic ...

In 2005, remasters made in 24-bit technology by Van Gelder himself were released. They are inexpensive and sound good. It's just that there are more interesting versions on the market. For example, Relaxin’… was released by the Japanese in 2013 on the Platinum SHM-CD, and a year later on the SACD in the USA by Analogue Productions. The same label then proposed another title: Cookin’…. Earlier, in 2013, Mobile Fidelity released its version of Steamin’… on the SACD album. In turn, the best version of Workin’… on CD was released on the Gold CD in 1994 by the DCC label, and the overall best one in 2011 on the SHM-SACD disc.

Happy hunting!

Craft Records is releasing Relaxin’… LP - it is a 1-step version!

INTERESTINGLY, THE LOUDSPEAKERS are just as fun to play modern, digitally recorded music with high compression. So I listened with curiosity to new tracks such as MANESKIN’S Model, Dream Girl Evil by FLORENCE + THE MACHINE, and even Zeit from the latest album by RAMMSTEIN. These would also sound nice with the previous models, but we would have the feeling that we are sacrificing something and that we need to return to recordings with classical music, jazz, etc.

The "III" version has all the advantages of the Avatar Audio loudspeakers that I’ve written about for the last ten years, take us through the bar, which for many listeners was unbeatable - now we do not have to do it anymore, the designer did it for us.

A sound with strong compression will be less refined with the tested designs than the discs I mentioned at the beginning, that's clear. But even strong electro-pop with roots dating back to the 1980s in OFELIA's release on Samuraj (Ofelia) will have enough musicality that we won't have to close ourselves within one or another musical genre. Therefore, decent quality pop music recordings, such as BILLIE EILISH’s No Time To Die, ADELE’s Cry Your Heart Out or - it's an excellent piece - Mood Ring by LORDE, will be extremely addictive.


AND ALL THAT THANKS TO THE COMBINATION of resolution, speed and brilliant "stitching" of the drivers. These are still loudspeakers with a different tonal balance than, for example, Dynaudio or even Harbeth products. But it's part of the "package" that we buy with them. And this translates into saturation and coherence. As on GEORGE HARRISON's All Things Must Pass in a new remix for the 50th anniversary of this album, which sounded atmospheric, like from the 1970s, but with a lot of information.

The loudspeakers impress with their design, but what we really pay for are the ten years that Cezariusz has spent tuning them. No other manufacturer I know, other than some Japanese companies, is as precise and as careful in their work as he is. Holophony Numer 2 III offer us access to the recordings on a different basis than the competition.

You must hear it yourselves - as long as you listen to them for a longer time - because these are the best Avatar Audio loudspeakers I have heard. Those who understand this will be richer in a unique experience. Hence our award ˻ RED Fingerprint ˺.

Technical specifications (acc. to the manufacturer)

Power handling: 20 W
Impedance: 4 Ω
Sensitivity: 97 dB
Frequency range: 25– 20 000 Hz
Dimensions: 1160 x 350 x 480 mm (H x W x D)
Weight: 35 kg/pc


Reference system 2022

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