Above, I alluded to the Reference Strada 2 system’s ability to “play big” and frankly this is more than a matter of simply being able to play loudly (although the system can do that, if you have an amplifier equal to the task). Rather, if you expressed the Strada 2’s “play big” factor as a mathematical formula it might look something like this: small size x muscular and agile dynamics x wide-open 3D soundstaging = a huge scope of presentation. Many of us are drawn to the idea of a bantamweight that can punch far above its weight class and the Reference Strada 2 system certain is that. To appreciate what I mean, listen to Ry Cooder’s and Manuel Galban’s Mambo Sinuendo through the Strada 2 rig and note how the system produces a huge soundstage, evincing a dark, warm, and faintly mysterious Cuban vibe. Talk about being transported to a different time and place…
Are there caveats we should address? I can think of a few. First, because dispersion of the CDT3 driver is so broad, one must avoid potential unwanted reflections from nearby surfaces (walls, furniture, TV screens, etc.). During my listening tests I solved this problem by using more speaker toe-in than usual and by placing room treatments on adjacent wall surfaces at the first reflection points. Second, in order to enjoy the smoothness I’ve described, do give the speakers as much or more run-in time than suggested by Gallo; this will help the speakers smooth out and open up considerably. Third, listen with your ears positioned at or very near tweeter height (if you listen from above or below the centreline of the tweeters, smoothness, coherency, and focus will be diminished). Finally, don’t skimp on electronics or cables. Whilst the Reference Strada 2 system may look like a mere “lifestyle” product, it demands audiophile-grade ancillary components to give of its best (hint: be sure to bring plenty of clean power to the party).
The Reference Strada 2 system is a lovely and effective problem solver. It is compact, easy on the eyes, and will fit in spaces where larger floorstanding speakers
Gallo Acoustics Reference Strada 2
Type: Acoustic suspension 2-way, three-driver stand-mount or wall-mount monitor
Driver complement: two 100mm mid-bass drivers, one CDT3 (cylindrical diaphragm transducer) piezoelectric Kynar tweeter.
Frequency response: 68Hz – 20 kHz +3dB (in room with boundary reinforcement; loudspeakers within 30cm of wall).
Suggested subwoofer crossover frequencies: Stand mounted, 80 – 120Hz; wall-mounted, 40 – 80 Hz
Impedance: 8 Ohms nominal
Sensitivity: 90 dB @ 1W/1m
Dimensions (H x W x D): 34.3x12.7x19.1cm
Weight: 5.2 kg
Price: Speakers, £1,500/pair; matching floor stands, £400/pair
Gallo Acoustics TR-3d powered subwoofer
Type: Acoustic suspension,
Driver complement: 250mm long-throw ceramic-coated aluminium woofer.
Frequency response: 18Hz – 180Hz ± 3dB (in-room)
Onboard amplifier output: 300 watts RMS, 600 watts peak
Controls: continuously variable active crossover, 50Hz – 180Hz with LFE bypass switch; phase switch, 0/180 degrees; bass EQ trim with settings for 0, +3, or +6dB @ 30Hz centre frequency.
Dimensions (H x W x D): 30.5x27.3x 34.3cm
Weight: 12.7 kg
Manufacturer: Anthony Gallo Acoustics
UK Distributor: Anthony Gallo Acoustics Europe
Tel: +44(0)1555 66 68 63