Review Price £439.99
The rear and front satellites of the Canton Movie 130 are of a two-way design with a single 80mm woofer and a 15mm tweeter above it. The centre speaker employs two of these woofers to lend extra prominence to dialogue, plus the same tweeter. The use of identical drivers across the system is designed to achieve tonal consistency.
The subwoofer’s on-board amplifier power has been lowered to 120W from the Movie 125 MX’s 140W. It moves air using a 200mm bass woofer, and in terms of frequency response it ranges from 38Hz to 140Hz, with a crossover point that can be adjusted between 90 and 140Hz using the dial on the back of the unit.
There’s also a volume dial, while connections include L/R low-level inputs and speaker-level inputs (binding posts). There’s no phase adjustment.
With Blu-ray soundtracks, the Movie 130’s performance is fast and sparky, conveying busy action scenes in a tidy and refined manner while steering clear of the coarseness that blights cheaper all-in-one systems. It’s an easy and enjoyable listen, injecting events with just enough dynamism to get you involved, but when handed a high-octane scene it doesn’t quite go for the jugular like you wish it would.
We took Clash of the Titans (2010) for a spin and the Canton revels in the movie’s mixture of breathless action and grandiose dialogue. During the scene in which Perseus’s crew is attacked by massive scorpions, the Movie 130 reproduces the effects with pleasing crispness, creating a spacious soundstage in which individual elements are given plenty of room to breathe. Rear effects fire into the room with great timing, steering between speakers smoothly.
The system is tonally consistent and the subwoofer interacts seamlessly with the satellites, giving the soundstage the requisite sense of unity.
We’re particularly impressed by its presentation of high-frequency detail. The delicate crunch of gravel beneath the warriors’ feet, the light chink of metal armour and the swishing of scorpion tails all sound wonderfully crisp and airy, backed up by solid midrange frequencies.
This keeps dialogue right at the forefront even in the midst of a furious action scene, helping you keep up with vital plot points. And during the film’s more contemplative scenes, this clearly-voiced speech is supported by delightful background details and a silky-sounding score.
But it’s at the other end of the sonic spectrum where the Canton’s weakness lies. While the subwoofer is capable of relaying scorpion footsteps with a decent amount of punch, it’s not as enthusiastic or fulsome as we hoped. We had to crank the level fairly high to get it involved and even then it couldn’t muster the thunder of rival systems. That goes for the system as a whole – its polite and polished sound is very enjoyable, but if you’re looking for pure exhilaration and formidable firepower then you might be advised to audition systems like the Roth OLi 10 or the Wharfedale DX-1 HCP.
In most respects the Canton Movie 130 is a worthy successor to the Movie 125 MX, matching its predecessor’s stylish design, exemplary build quality and sparky, detailed sound. But a little of the older system’s power and authority has gone out of the window, resulting in a sound that’s never anything less than enjoyable but lacks the dramatic punch that really gets the pulse racing.
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