The Arcaydis brand has actually been around for more than twenty years; I reviewed a couple of examples nearly that long ago. However, having run his business as a direct sale operation for several successful years, founder Richard Allen suffered personal and health issues. He failed to meet delivery targets and consequently the support from the hitherto very positive internet forums turned against the brand, so somewhat reluctantly he closed things down in 2013.
Happily, that didn’t turn out to be the end of Arcaydis – or indeed Richard Allen – as the brand was re-launched in 2016 by two brothers, born in Britain of Hungarian extraction, called James and Robin Szemeti, with Allen’s assistance. After fifteen years in the BBC, followed by some years running a software operation, Robin currently holds the post of Technical Director, while James also has much technical knowhow, but is also very much the hi-fi nut.
Now based in Sheffield (not coincidentally, the home of excellent loudspeaker cabinetmaker Timberworks) rather than Kidderminster, Arcaydis once again uses a ‘direct sale’ strategy to keep prices low, alongside a 30-day returns policy (see website at www.arcaydis.com). It seems that there are currently two loudspeakers, an EB1S and EB2S, plus an inexpensive (valve) preamplifier and a Class D power amp under the Aeron brand that the company imports from Italy.
The EB2S is the subject of this review. It has a sealed-box enclosure, which is quite unusual these days, and accounts for the bulk of a speaker that occupies roughly half the volume of a typical floorstander. The sealed box construction should ensure fine bass extension alongside a ‘dry’ overall balance that should avoid ‘port boom’.
It also features something called ‘Arcolam’ in its cabinetwork, which is not explained on the website, but apparently minimises cabinet coloration through the lamination of layers of different woods. I had a quick look (via removal of the terminal block), and found a worthwhile combination of birch ply and MDF, making an overall sandwich construction.
Stands of 40cm are recommended and were simply not available, though I did find some 45cm examples. These seem appropriate enough, given my 6ft+ stature and a highish chair. When in position I could certainly see the top surfaces of the enclosures, so I was actually above the tweeter axis. The stands themselves were coupled to the speakers using Blu-Tack, and were then placed (as usual) onto Townshend decoupling platforms.