Magico is well known as one of the world’s best high-end loudspeaker brands, but when it comes to that world where the high-end meets the word ‘attainable’, things get a little sketchy. This is a company that makes uncompromising loudspeakers with equally compromise-free price tags, so bringing the Magico name down from the stratosphere without sacrifice was not an option. There have been some very successful entry-level products from the company, but ‘entry-level’ was still beyond reach for many, and the uncompromising stance that might work for more elite consumers (such as needing to return the speakers to the factory for repairs) is not an option as we join high-end’s nursery slopes. The A3 addresses all these things, producing, at last, an attainably-priced loudspeaker that Magico can call its own while making it suitable for a wider audience. In the process, Magico helps reset what high-end is all about.
At a basic level, the A3 is every inch a Magico loudspeaker. It uses high-tech materials in its drive units, it has a sealed cabinet made of solid panels of aluminium, there is no such thing as bi-wiring, and it sits on a set of spikes that would rip through the armour of a WWII tank if fired at sufficient speed. The finish options – in Magico’s traditional manner – range from flat obsidian, through pitch, to coal. In other words... matt black. It’s a fine anodised finish rather than a powder-coat and is the finish shared by Magico models that cost 20x the price of the A3, so it’s nothing to be sniffed at.
Beneath the surface, there beats a heart of pure Magico, too. The 6061 T6 aircraft-grade aluminium enclosure (like Big Boy Magico models) includes a complex series of internal polished aluminium bracing sections, designed to add mass and stiffness while lowering internal resonance. This has similarities with the internal structure of loudspeakers in Magico’s considerably more expensive S, M, and Q series. To make the A3 both attainably priced and weigh less than a small car, this is just internal bracing (essentially the plates of the outside of the A3 here form the enclosure itself, where in bigger Magicos they are a heavy skin on an aluminium skeleton). While the heavier and more expensive construction adds considerably to the performance of upper echelon Magicos, this simpler, lighter form of construction sacrifices next to nothing sonically, and sets the A3 head-and-shoulders ahead of the pack at its price.
The drive units are remarkably similar to those found in more up-scale Magicos. The A3 features a 28mm Beryllium-coated tweeter (although the top-flight Magicos now feature a Beryllium-diamond composite, Beryllium is still a major part of the Magico sound). Also, the A3’s single 160mm Graphene Nano-Tec midrange unit and two 178mm Graphene Nano-Tec bass drivers are – notionally at least – like combining the cone-type midrange driver from the S series with two of the three bass drive units from the M3. In reality, the drive units in these more esoteric designs have an order of magnitude more engineering applied, utilise different magnet structures and even different grades of material in the drive unit itself, but the A3 still represents a trickle-down of Magico’s Graphine Nano-Tec driver technology, and the benefits it bestows on the sound quality.