Elac Debut & Uni-Fi Series listed in Absolute Sound top 2018 Buyer’s Guide: Stand-Mounted Loudspeakers Under $3,000
Elac Debut B5
It’s little; it’s vinyl clad; it’s dirt cheap; and it sounds terrific. The B5 compact represents the first effort in what should be a long and fruitful collaboration between Elac and its celebrated VP of Engineering, Andrew Jones. The B5 is robust in the mid and upper bass but the real difference is how everything comes together in such an exquisitely balanced and musical fashion. NG instinctively connected with the basic honesty of the B5 sound and was gobsmacked by its bargain-basement price. What Jones and the Elac team have managed to ring from this most humble of designs is nothing short of exceptional.
Elac Uni-Fi UB5
How do you follow an act like the Elac Debut B5? If you’re designer Andrew Jones, there’s only one route: engineering one of his trademark concentric drivers for a sub-$500 three-way compact. Sonically, if you loved the Debut B5, you’re going to really love the UB5; it’s the B5 gone to finishing school. There’s greater specificity, body, and focus to images—all trademarks of the concentric driver. Add to that a sibilance range that is natural, sharp, and quick, like the live event. Plus there is rock-solid 50Hz midbass output similar to the B5 but much more controlled, and less reliant on the port. While there’s still a bit of veiling and the UB5 doesn’t fully shed its enclosure, let’s get real—this Elac is competitive with speakers well beyond its price segment. It might just be the best five hundred bucks you’ll ever spend.