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LOUDSPEAKERS ⸜ standmount


Manufacturer: FALCON ACOUSTICS Ltd.
Price (in Poland): 12 990 PLN/pair

Mallories, Pound Lane, Stanton St. John
Oxford, Oxfordshire | UK, 0X33 1HF


Provided for test by: AUDIO ATELIER


translation Ewa Muszczynko
Picture “High Fidelity”

No 228

May 1, 2023

Falcon Acoustics Ltd. was founded in 1972 by MALCOLM JONES, a British engineer who previously worked for the KEF company. He retired in 2009 and handed over the reins to JERRY BLOOMFIELD, remaining with the company as a Technical Consultant.

ALCON ACOUSTICS is currently the only company with LS3/5a speakers identical with the original KEF models and there is no coincidence in that. Its founder, MALCOLM JONES, was hired in 1961 by KEF owner, Raymond Cooke himself, as chief engineer. He was responsible for its most important speakers, but also – and perhaps most importantly – for its drivers: the B139, B200, B110, T15 and T27. He parted ways with KEF in 1974, two years after Falcon was founded. Just before he left, he still managed to finalize the creation of a milestone, not only for KEF, but for the entire industry – the majestic KEF Reference 104 loudspeakers.

As we wrote in our review of the Falcon Acoustics LS3/5a, at the end of the previous millennium the original, carefully stored drivers were no longer on stock and the license models disappeared from the market (more → HERE). All subsequent LS3/5a speakers were only similar to them, but had to use new drivers without the BBC license. In 2014, Falcon unveiled its version of this legend, in addition with the full backing of the British Broadcasting Corporation. This was possible because the company began producing split drivers identical to the 1975 B110 and KEF T27, with a 15-ohm crossover.

This model is a staple of Falcon's offer today. Since the test, a special "Gold Badge" version of it has been created and the price has increased significantly - it is a new reality, not only of the audio industry. The list of models on offer, by the way, is very short, like a menu in a good restaurant. In addition to the LS3/5a, you'll also find the powerful M50 floorstanding speakers ($70,000 per pair) and a novelty, the M10 floorstanding speakers there. The latter are, it seems, an attempt to fill the void left by the LS3/5a improvements and price increases. The M10s cost exactly £1,000 more than the Falcon Acoustics LS3/5a in March 2019.

JERRY BLOOMFIELD will make you more familiar with the topic


| A few simple words with…

owner, constructor

IN THE LAST FEW MONTHS, the M10s have received many awards for best sound at various exhibitions, three in Florida, for example. Although we constantly hear the question "where is the subwoofer?", on the other hand, at exhibitions we meet many people or couples in our rooms who just sit quietly and listen with pleasure for a long time, without feeling that something is missing in the sound.

The M10 model is the first "specification 5" model (this relates to the BBC specification – Editor's note) from the M series in which we have used our own drivers. The subsequent models will be:
the M20, a monitor speaker with the new 8” Falcon B200 driver and a tweeter from the M series, a modified version of the SEAS speaker with a damping chamber,
the M30, a loudspeaker slightly larger than the M20, with an additional tweeter,
the M40, a floorstanding speaker with B20 bass drivers and B110 midrange drivers.

The top model in the series is the already available M50, which uses a B139 woofer for low but well-integrated bass, two B110 drivers and an M-series dome tweeter. The entire series will be premiered at the High End 2023 show in Munich, where we will be playing music from the M10 and M50.

The M-Series is tuned, as you would expect from a company like Falcon and the history of its BBC speakers and drivers, with particular emphasis placed on the midrange, the range between 300 Hz and 5 kHz, since 80% of all musical information is contained there. Therefore, the main feature of the M series is natural, detailed and coloration-free midrange. We also applied good engineering practices to the highs and lows.

The result of these treatments is a tonally well-balanced musical presentation of a similar character to that of the Gold Badge LS3/5A. The tighter bass extension we get with the M10 makes for a pleasant and relaxing experience, allowing the listener to connect with the music rather than the audio system. JB

» More interested readers → HERE | PL |


The M10

The M10 ARE MONITORS. For the most part, this is an overstatement of the name, as it originally referred only to speakers used in recording and post-production studios, where they allowed one to "monitor" the progress of work. As a rule, they were supposed to have the flattest possible sound transmission characteristics. Falcon's speakers are entitled to the name, as they come from a company professionally associated with the BBC studios, which had a number of real monitors on offer.

It's interesting to note, but both the original LS3/5a and most other studio monitors designed either at the BBC or by engineers derived from it, had no flat response at all. In descriptions of the sound of this iconic loudspeaker, there is often a passage that speaks of an accentuated bass-midrange breakthrough. Anyway, even in my, largest in Harbeth's range, powerful M40.1 monitors, the bandwidth is not flat, and some of the mid-bass is raised.

An oversight? Not at all, as the BBC people knew perfectly well what they were doing. The point is that psychoacoustics and experience make it clear: the bandwidth of speakers intended for listening outside an anechoic chamber should not be flat at all. If it is, we get dead, small sound. The mastery lies in skillfully selecting the places where something is emphasized (usually around the low midrange) or weakened (usually the treble).

| Near-field listening

STUDY MONITORS of the type of the LS3/5a, or the ubiquitous Yamaha NS-10M Pro, are used for listening in the near field. Most often we see them lying on the mixing table or standing right behind it, so that the distance from the sound engineer rarely exceeds 100 cm.

According to the blog, “nearfield” "refers to monitoring where you are hearing more of the speaker and less of the room’s reflections – in small rooms and project studios, this means your listening position is typically going to be three to five feet from the monitors" (more → HERE, accessed: 6.04.2023).

The portal adds:

Nearfield listening is a technique where the speakers are placed close to the listener so that they can hear all the details of the mix without the sound being disturbed by reflections from walls and other surfaces in the room. Nearfield speakers are an essential tool for mixing and mastering engineers and will be found in all the best music studios. (…)

The purpose of using nearfield speakers is to create a more accurate soundstage. By placing the speakers closer to the listener, it is easier to control the directivity of the sound and avoid unwanted reflections. This leads to a more accurate representation of the soundstage, which is especially important for critical listening applications such as mixing and mastering.

Nearfield Speakers (What and why we need them?), →, accessed: 6.04.2023.

Let me add that I listen to my Harbeth M40.1 speakers in a semi-near field.

» For interested readers: →, accessed: 6.04.2023.

The M10 ARE THUS MONITORS DESIGNED for near or semi-near field listening. They have a two-way, two-speaker design. They are intended to be a modern reinterpretation of the LS3/5a, using contemporary components, drivers and design. So, let us compare the two designs. What is most striking is their different appearance. The LS3/5a have a felt surround around the tweeter, and the front panel is recessed, making the side panels form a frame around it, into which the grilles are pressed.

The body of the two monitor models is similar only in appearance. In fact, only the front panel has similar proportions, while the M10s are noticeably deeper. The point is that the designers wanted a speaker much easier to drive than the LS3/5a, and with more powerful bass. That is why the M10s are bass-reflex cabinet speakers. Their frequency response is 40 Hz-25 kHz (+/- 3 dB), while that of the LS3/5a was 70 Hz-20 kHz. This also paid off in terms of efficiency, 86 dB (M) vs. 83 dB (LS), and impedance – 8 vs. 15 Ω.

The woofer-midrange drivers in both models are the same, the B110 Falcon model made exactly to BBC specifications from 1976. The tweeter is different, however. In the LS, it was a 19-mm T27 dome made exclusively for the Falcon, reproduced from the original BBC blueprints. In the M10, it is a SEAS soft dome, modified for this design, with a sizable box damping the back side of the diaphragm. The division between the speakers is set quite high, at 3 kHz. This means that most of the midrange is processed by the B110 speaker.

The enclosures for both speakers are made by the same specialized company in Italy (Falcon does not say which one), but in a different way. While the LS models had an enclosure made of birch plywood, the M series uses classic MDF. The veneer, however, is of equally high quality - the speakers look superb. The rear panel of the M10 is lacquered black, and nickel-plated speaker sockets are mounted in the recess. In the basic version, the speakers have a veneer in the color of European Walnut, and for an extra 2,000 PLN we get Rosewood veneer.

The speakers have magnetically attached grilles – black fabric stretched over an MDF frame.

⸜ STANDS We can buy company stands for the speakers, manufactured for Falcon by an external firm. Conceived for the LS speakers, they can also support the M10 without a problem. Their design resembles stands made by Target. Their bottom and top are made of thick steel and connected with four rectangular profiles.

The profiles are positioned in such a way that two profiles can be seen from each side, each from a different side. The manufacturer recommends positioning the stands so that the wider side is on the outside and the narrower side is on the inside - the stands of the left and right channels are mirror images. We screw steel spikes into them from underneath, onto which, from above, we screw M8 cap nuts. Unfortunately, it will not be easy to exchange them with high-end anti-vibration feet, since the spikes are screwed into rather long flanges. The bases are weighted, with dry sand poured into the profiles – a totally classic solution.

The stands are of a classic height, the edge of the top was at a height of 635 mm, which means that other stands of a similar height can also be used with the M10 monitors. It seems that the designers wanted the tweeter to be at the height of our ears.


⸜ THE WAY WE LISTENED The Falcon Acoustics M10 speakers were tested in the HIGH FIDELITY reference system and powered by a Soulution 710 solid-state amplifier, but for a while I also listened to them with a Leben CS600X tube amplifier. They were connected to the Soulution amp with a Siltech Triple Crown cable, and to the Leben with a CRYSTAL CABLE ART SERIES DA VINCI cable, test → HERE | PL |.

Separately, however, I conducted a listening session using a Leben CS-600X tube amplifier, with EL34 pentodes operating in the push-pull mode. In this case, signal from the Ayon Audio player was routed with Crystal Cable Abolute Dream interconnects, to the Art Series Da Vinci speakers from the same company.

The speakers stood a little closer to the listening area than the Harbeths M40.1, at 200 cm from each other and 180 cm from me. The distance between their rear panel and the back wall was 120 cm. They were pointed directly at the listening area.

I determined the distance between the speakers and their leveling with a Bosch PLR 50 C rangefinder. Read more about aligning speakers in the article Mikrodostrajanie, czyli ustawiamy głośniki (Eng. Micro-tuning or speaker alignment), HIGH FIDELITY № 177, January 1st, 2019, →, accessed: 08.03.2023. More on the acoustics of the HF room can be found in the article Pomieszczenie odsłuchowe “High Fidelity” w oczach Mariusza Zielmachowicza (Eng. “High Fidelity” listening room in the eyes of Mariusz Zielmachowicz), HIGH FIDELITY № 189, January 1st, 2020, →, accessed: 08.03.2023.

⸜ Albums used in the test | a selection

⸜ KING CRIMSON, In The Court Of The Crimson King (An Observation By King Crimson), Island Records/Discipline Global Mobile/WOWOW Entertainment IEZP-128, „50th Anniversary Box Set”, 3 x K2HD UHQCD + Blu-ray (1969/2019).
⸜ MAYO NAKANO PIANO TRIO, Miwaku, Briphonic BRPN-7007GL, Extreme Hard Glass CD-R (2017).
⸜ ART PEPPER, Art Pepper meets The Rhythm Section, Contemporary Records/Craft Recordings CR00392, SACD/CD (1957/2022).
⸜ ENYA, Enya, BBC Entertainment BBC CD 605, CD (1987).


COLUMNS OF THE SIZE OF THE M10, listened to right after large full-range designs, seem as if something has gone wrong in them. Let's not delude ourselves and tell fairy tales that a few liters of cabinet volume are the same as a few dozen, and that a 110-mm speaker is equivalent to a 300-mm one, because it is not true. Small speakers have limitations and that's it.

However, the beauty of designs like the LS3/5a or the M10 is that in a small room, set up close to the listening area, they let something of the magic of the world recorded on tape, hard drive or acetate into our world. The M10s do this especially easily, because they are free to play, do not show compression the way speakers of this size should, and build stable, clear sound sources. They construct an entirely new space that is complete with instruments and surrounding acoustics, without inserting them into our room.

In The Court Of The Crimson King (An Observation By King Crimson) by KING CRIMSON begins with swishes and sounds made by a steam engine. In the version remixed by Steven Wilson for the 2019 release, they are especially clear and come from the left, also from behind us. Nota bene, Fripp's guitar from the album's second track Talk To The Wind is also heard from behind us from time to time. In any case, the M10 showed these details with panache, i.e., clearly and transparently.

In doing so, they did not overdo the hyperrealism, because while they did not blur details, they did not "inflate" themselves to show the scale of the event. Even in the densest parts of the improvisation that ends the title track, they did not get lost, become aggressive, or "hide" quieter sounds under a mass of others. I think this is largely due to their exceptional resolution. These little guys cannot render events as reliably as the Harbeths M40.1, or other large speakers of this class. Once accommodated, however, it turns out that they do it very well, just in their own way.

They also have something in their sound that makes us listen intently to what is happening in front of us. Firstly, everything is perfectly arranged, balanced and coherent. Secondly, together it produces a new quality, something more than just "this" or "that." And then there is the beautiful insight into the sound of instruments. When Michael Giles strikes the tom (that's the "pot" on the left, looking from the viewer), you can hear the resonance of the diaphragm brilliantly. It is boosted by a reverb superimposed on the drums, but it is something special, just like the long reverb accompanying the flute – it's clean, has a fine decay and fades out nicely.

And how brilliantly these little ones showcased the percussion recorded by Mr. Masamichi Ohashi on the MAYO NAKANO PIANO TRIO album entitled Miwaku! I add an exclamation mark, though I normally avoid it, believing it is too often overused, but in this case it pressed itself on the keyboard. This is a digital recording, in DSD256, and digital drum recordings made on DAWs have it that the drum foot is somewhat muffled in them. And even something like that, although (after all) these are speakers that do not show low notes, is also audible with them.

So, the Falcon speakers are resolute, you cannot hear compression with them, and they are perfectly coherent. The same qualities could also be attributed to the LS3/5as, which were their "prototype". However, these are not speakers that play in the same way. The timbre of the M10s is more open than that of the LSs, regardless of which licensee made the particular unit. They also do not have the abovementioned latter's boost at low midrange. Thus, they are more tonally even, but not at all boring. They have fire, rhythm and power in them.

It is, of course, also the case that when we listen to electronic music with them, the musical message will be much smaller than from large speakers. But if we sit closer to them, the problem is largely eliminated. We would not be able to sit so close to the large-size speakers. In smaller rooms, therefore, this is the only option to get as much as possible from large speakers. With the M10s, this is a very pleasant option, all the more so because the intrinsic "congruence" of this sound is a lot of fun. The message is stress-free and wonderfully harmonic – as heard, for example, on the album by ENYA.

As I have already said, the M10s sound slightly different from the LS3/5as. They have a more withdrawn foreground and more open treble. It is still velvety, warm sound, though without saturated low midrange. So, the volume of instruments here is lower than with the iconic counterparts. On the other hand, we get higher dynamics with them. The bass goes down into similar regions, so the bass-reflex has been used here to give off energy rather than to pull the bass down. Although a bit warm, they show details very well, even things like the noise accompanying the entrance of individual tracks on Enya's album.

˻ The LEBEN CS-600X ˺ As expected, the British speakers remarkably match with the tube amplifier. They are not as accurate then, nor do they have an equally precisely laid out soundstage. Instead, they are even more "harmonic," so to speak, saturated and dense. I listened to them with a Leben amplifier which has a separate knob with which we can boost the bass by +3 or +6 dB – the Japanese like horn loudspeakers and loudspeakers with broadband speakers, where bass is usually lacking.

Anyway, adding 3 dB made the sound bigger and closer to me. Both King Crimson and Enya, followed immediately by the jazz of the Nakano Piano Trio and ART PEPPER from Art Pepper meets The Rhythm Section, were even more enjoyable, even more sensual. At the same time, it was audible that these are designs that do not need loads of power, especially if you set them up close to the listening area (remember, every 1 m away means twice as much power needed to achieve the same sound pressure).


FALCON ACOUSTICS has something that makes speakers with the company's logo suitable "for people." That is, they are for listening to music in comfort. They are coherent, dense and somewhat warm, and very natural. At the same time, the M10s are more neutral than the LS3/5as. They are not as saturated as the LSs, but you cannot have everything. With a tube or solid-state amplifier playing in the spirit of tubes, they will give you an incredibly satisfying, fascinating sound that can be listened to for hours.

Interesting, but these are speakers that are also resolving, and thus show information contained in a recording very well, both in terms of details regarding timbre or dynamics, and what is happening in stereoscopic space. These are monitors in the full sense of the word, with incredibly clear, but "human" sound. They show a large soundstage, with well-arranged elements, but do not exude hyperstereophony. Yes, you can live with such speakers, maybe even forever.

Technical specifications (according to the manufacturer):

Frequency response:
• 40 Hz-25 kHz ⸜ +/- 3dB
• 70 Hz-20 kHz ⸜ +/-2dB
Sensitivity: 86 dB (2.83 V)
Nominal impedance: 8 Ω
Crossover split point: 3 kHz
Suggested amplifier power: 25-100 W
Dimensions (H x W x D): 316 x 185 x 260 mm
Weight: 7.5 kg/ea.


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