So as a combination of passably contemporary looks, undeniable quality of build and finish, impressive (and, in places, very individual) specification, and even-handed, effortless and prodigiously detailed sound, the ELAC Vela FS 408 are right on the money. There’s little to teach them about timing, or the minor second-stage harmonic details that can make all the difference to the sound of a solo piano. ‘Attentive’ is too mild a description for the attitude the ELACs adopt.
And anyway, should you really expect an aesthete to be able to hold their own in a brawl outside a pub? It’s possible to make demands of the Vela FS 408 that they’re uncomfortable trying to fulfil – the dynamic switch from ‘solo triangle player at the rear of the stage’ to ‘every section of the orchestra attempting to overpower every other section’ is not where the ELACs excel. But take them on their own terms and they have more than enough about them to make every listen a smooth and informative journey.
Type: 2.5-way; bass reflex port;
Driver complement: 1 × JET5 tweeter; 1 × 180mm AS-XR midrange driver; 1 × 180mm AS-XR bass driver
Frequency response: 28Hz–50kHz
Crossover frequency: 450Hz; 2550Hz
Impedance: 4 Ohms nominal
(3.6 Ohms minimum)
1142 × 276 × 332mm
Weight: 27 kg/each
Finishes: High gloss white; high gloss black
Manufacturer: ELAC Electroacustic GmbH
UK Distributor: Hi-Fi Network