A good monitor combines a high degree of accuracy with untrammeled musicality. There aren’t many of those around – common wisdom has it that you can have one or the other but never both. The LS1 is the first monitor to prove conventional wisdom wrong.
By integrating top quality digital signal processing, converters and amplifiers in one of the speakers’ legs, we were able to apply technical strategies no one had used before. As a consequence, the LS1 is not just a loudspeaker, but a complete audio system that only needs an analog or digital line source to perform.
“This speaker is explicitly for those who want the most neutral and transparent sound reproduction, no corners were cut.”
True accuracy is about getting all the bits in the right place: not losing anything, not adding anything either. The LS1 offers this accuracy, reproducing a truly musical recording accurately, with all beauty intact. At the same time, the LS1 will also reproduce any imperfection, giving you all the information you need to get it right. These qualities make the LS1 an ideal monitor for both mastering and mixing.
Looking at the design, the box is much wider than it is deep, the small (14 litres) sealed box is designed to provide an effective baffle down to around 250Hz. It is suspended between two half cylinders that combat diffractions and function as an integral two-legged floor stand. An 8” magnesium woofer and a 1” dome tweeter divide the work between them. Smart use of DSP linearizes the frequency response and allows for a controlled bass response down to 35 Hz.
Housed in one of the two legs are a 48/76-bit DSP, digital I/O, AD/DA, the same clock circuit as our CC1 master clock and the drive electronics, encompassing two 180W Class D power amplifiers of the groundbreaking Hypex NCore type.
The concept of the LS1 draws maximum benefit from intelligent application of DSP technology. An IIR crossover imposes exact LR4 acoustic slopes crossing at 1550Hz, and the phase is subsequently corrected using an idealised inverted all-pass filter, resulting in a maximally linear phase response without any pre-echo’s. This removes the “digital loudspeaker sound signature” typical of the more ubiquitous impulse inverted FIR designs.
Despite their compact size, the floor standing speakers are clearly intended as main monitors in mastering studios and mixing rooms that have space to put free-standing speakers. The DSP controlled analog subwoofer output allows for easy integration with stereo subwoofers, for those that need high SPL performance below 40 Hz. By selecting our LS1s-dmf or LS1s subwoofer, perfect integration with the main system is obtained, effectively turning the LS1 into a threeway system. The MU1 music player or LS1r remote offer convenient control of all functions inside the LS1.