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Ferguson Hill FH007 and FH008 Speakers - Ferguson Hill FH007 and FH008
Another reason these speakers are such good value lies in what you get for your money. Part of the reviewed package is not only those arty clear acrylic horn and mid-bass speakers, but also an extremely hefty and powerful 100W sub-woofer unit. You can choose not to buy the sub, but to be honest, the speakers on their own aren't very bassy, so it would be foolish not to.
On top of the sub you also get a beautifully-built amplifier which has been made specifically for the FH007s. This bi-amps the speakers, which means that, unlike a standard speaker and amp setup, each of the four passive drivers is powered by its own amplifier circuit; standard setups involve a single amp per stereo channel and rely on passive crossovers in the speakers themselves to split the signal between the high and low frequency drivers. To this end, the amplifier features five 3.5mm outputs: one pair for the horn speakers, one pair for the mid-bass speakers and a single output for the sub, with each speaker output supplying 16.4W of power.
The detailing is also very impressive. Each of the horn speakers might be 38cm high, but the blemish-free transparent horns will just disappear into the background of your living room (you get a pair of cotton gloves with which to keep them clean). They're supported by slender, brushed aluminium tubular stands which lead to three spiked feet, and a set of silicone feet have been supplied to further isolate the system from vibrations. The spherical bass speakers, similarly, rest on chunky aluminium cones and also have silicone feet supplied for them.
The final and decisive reason these speakers are so good, though, is the sound quality. The first time you fire them up they sound downright awful - but given two solid weeks of running in, playing away to themselves at medium volume levels and music is transformed from sounding as if it's being played through a trombone with no mouthpiece to a truly revolutionary, transparent and emotional experience.
The secret to this lies in the design of the speakers. Unlike most bookshelf or floor-standing designs, which use bass-mid drivers coupled with a tweeter for just the high end frequencies, the FH007 utilises what could be called a semi-full range approach. Whereas most tweeter-based speaker designs split the frequency at around the 2kHz mark (tweeters typically reproduces sound above this to 20KHz, while the bass/mid drivers focus on the range below it) the FH007's horn speakers reproduce sounds from 340Hz all the way up to 20kHz with the spherical bass units covering the frequencies from 75Hz to 350Hz. The sub is adjustable in the 50Hz to 150Hz range.