Dali Spektor 2 has a larger inner volume over Spektor 1, delivering extra bass performance whilst still being a compact speaker in comparison to the larger Spektor 6 floorstanding speakers. Combine these with the Spektor Vokal centre speaker and a matching Dali subwoofer of your choice to create an immersive 5.1 system.
The increased surface areas of the 5¼” woofer and 25mm tweeter increases overall sound pressure levels making this the perfect choice for larger rooms with less space for speakers. The Spektor 2 will also find itself at home in any surround position, helping you get that fully immersive movie experience.
On paper, there’s little to differentiate Dali’s new Spektor 2s from any of their main rivals. These speakers stick to the classic budget standmounter formula like Superglue sticks to fingers.
There’s everything we would expect from a typical $300 box here, from two-way driver configuration and ported bass tuning right the way through to the 25mm dome tweeter and 13cm mid/bass driver.
But as with any dish, culinary or (in this case) acoustic, the list of ingredients only tells you so much – and those familiar with Dali will know it has something of a talent for budget boxes.
So it proves with the Dali Spektor 2s.
Extra Bass Performance
The Dali Spektor 2 packs a larger inner volume than the Spektor 1 and thereby delivers an extra bass performance. Getting this much Hi-Fi performance from a speaker in this price range not only took all of Dali’s experience and know-how, but also endless hours spent in the listening room improving the driver and crossover designs to create the perfect audio performance.
The compact Dali Spektor 2 – and its slightly smaller sibling Spektor 1 – are ideal for wall mounting, shelf or stand positioning in combination with any compact Hi-Fi music system. The Spektor 2 will also find itself at home in any surround position, helping you get that fully immersive movie experience.
The Dali Spektor 2, like all Dali loudspeakers, has been designed in accordance with our fundamental acoustic and electro-acoustic principles, and a strong belief that clarity and an authentic, honest sound reproduction will get you even closer to the full impact of a live music experience.
It had been awhile since I last played Time to Say Goodbye by Andrea Bocelli and Sarah Brightman. This was the first track I put on, hoping that I would not be hit by the brightness through the Spektors. My jaw dropped – the track sounded extremely pleasing to my ears, with no shrill or excessive treble. The first impression was that of the ambience of a concert hall.
Bocelli’s vocal did not suffer any lack of low-end notes and the high-pitched voicel of Brightman, was delivered with a luscious and sweet intonation. Vocals seems to be one of the Spektor’s positive traits. This, however, I already expected as my experience with other bookshelves has been similar – sweet vocals and clarity.
Now, a little bit of the bass test. Kicked in the Take Five track by Dave Brubeck. The Spektors maintained the sound stage with more distinction in clarity and detail. The percussion solo on this track was delivered with authority, with quite hard-hitting bass for the cabinet/driver size. However, the magical part was actually the saxophone on this track – airy, spacious and yet, not drowned by the piano and low-end notes. Everything was cohesive to each other. But I wanted more bass. Yes, more…
Way Down Deep by Jennifer Warnes was the one that made me forget about floorstanders for a moment. The Spektors can really dive deep for those heavy bass requirements. No sign of distortion coming from the speakers but it did rattle my furniture a bit, even at my usual listening level. I can easily say that the belief of bookshelf not being able to deliver enough bass was diminished instantly. The beauty of this is that it does not drown the clarity nor the treble from the track.
And now for some shredding guitars. Boo Hoo Clapping Song from local heros Carburetor Dung was up next. The opening guitar and drum solo literally pumped up my adrenalin and I started to drum along to this track. The guitar, even though coming from the angst of punk music, sounded energetic and melodious. No shrills but just thrills. Again, when the vocals kicked in, neither the bass or treble overwhelmed the clarity of the vocals.
The final track was by The Wonders, That Thing You Do. This, however, was a bit bright, as the highs can be a bit extreme. Quite surprising as this was a pop-ish song that is not so complicated to be reproduced. The bass line, which is one of the track’s melodious parts, sounded a bit flat. It might be the source but then, it sounds quite fine usually.
Dali makes it easy to integrate your loudspeakers into any room. Both the driver materials and geometry applied in the Spektor 2 have been selected to achieve a wide dispersion pattern.
You will experience a well-integrated sound, even when listening significantly off-axis. And, as you are often not seated directly in front of the loudspeaker when listening to music, this is important.
Optimising the audio signal for off-axis distribution results in the signal reaching your ear directly and the signal reflected off the room surfaces, to have a coherent balance. This means a consistent high sound quality across a much wider listening area. At the same time, it offers greater freedom and flexibility in positioning the loudspeakers.
An added benefit is hugely reduced harmonic distortion and diffractions causing frequency distortion, as these will always be stronger in an on-axis response. This is also the reason why all Dali speakers are not designed for toeing-in.
Dali Spektor 2 – Build
Take them out of the packaging and the first impression is good. They’re nicely made, without quite giving off the quality feel of a pair of similarly priced Q Acoustics 3020s. Still, the panels line up well and general fit and attention to detail is good.
There are two options for the finish: the walnut of our review sample or black ash. Both look smart. The Dali Spektor 2s are pretty compact at just 29cm high and shouldn’t dominate a room, even if mounted (as they really should be) on some sturdy stands.
Let them run in over a couple of days and supply them with a good system (we use Marantz’s CD6006 CD Player and Rega’s Brio amplifier alongside our usual reference Naim NDS/555PS and Gamut pre/power combination) and these speakers sparkle.
Their rated sensitivity is a little on the low side – just over 84dB/W/m – and nominal impedance is 6ohms, so it wouldn’t hurt to partner them with an amplifier packing a decent amount of poke.
Soft Dome Tweeter
The Dali Spektor 2 tweeter is able to render high frequencies with high accuracy. This means very short excursions, but at high speed, – or rather – with high acceleration. In other words, it features a low moving mass and a strong motor.
The tweeter in the Dali Spektor 2 is based on an ultra-light weight weaved fabric. Compared to most soft dome tweeters in the market, the Dali dome material is less than half the weight; 0.056 mg per mm2.
The beauty of the soft dome tweeter is its impressive ability to play even the lowest parts of the high frequency range without any break-ups. This is crucial when handling the all important hand-over from the woofer to the tweeter. Not having to push either the woofer or tweeter beyond what they do best results in a seamless transition and preservation of every detail in the mid-range frequencies.
Dali Spektor 2 – Sound
Play Aretha Franklin’s (You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman and the Spektors excel with her distinctive and powerful vocals. They’re delivered with nuance and passion, each word crisply defined with no room for doubt as to the emotion behind the lyrics.
We like the cohesive way these speakers handle the instrumental backdrop too – they deliver the music with considerable finesse, precision and energy.
Moving to Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture shows the Spektors are capable of high volume levels and a decent degree of composure when pushed.
There’s a pleasing level of resolution here, along with the ability to organise that information into an involving and musical whole.
The way these speakers handle dynamics is impressive. They’re fluid and expressive, handling both large-scale swings and low-level subtleties with equal skill.
The result is these Dalis have the ability to draw the listener into the music in a way that eludes even the best of their price-comparable rivals.
We position the Dalis just a little out from the rear wall and fire them straight ahead, just as the company recommends.
This results in an expansive and stable soundstage – but when it comes to scale and authority, the likes of Mission’s LX2s are capable of a little better.
Tonally, the Dali Spektor 2s have a full-bodied yet balanced presentation. There isn’t much sign of the over-enthusiastic treble we’ve been subjected to in some previous generations of budget Dalis.
This means the Dali Spektor 2s are easy to partner ,and less fussy about poor or aggressive recordings. They’re not far off the sophisticated Q Acoustics 3020s in this regard.
We finish with Bruce Springsteen’s Radio Nowhere and these boxes respond superbly. They deliver the song’s hard-charging rhythm with glee, lacking little in the way of drive, punch or power.
This is a dense production, but these speakers have enough by way of insight and control to keep everything in check.
Wood Fibre Woofer
The increased surface areas of the 5¼” woofer increases the overall sound pressure levels, making this the perfect choice for larger rooms that still require a compact speaker. The wood fibre cones are a Dali trademark, as well as a proven Dali technology. The Dali Spektor 2 cone membrane is crafted from a mix of fine-grained paper and wood fibre pulp.
This makes the cones very ridged, very light weight and the unevenness in the structure of the membrane helps minimize unwanted surface resonances. Combining the well-behaving wood fibre cone with the low-loss rubber surround and spider suspension results in the reproduction of even the smallest micro-detail in the signal – unfiltered and with high accuracy.
The structure of the chassis was designed for optimal strength and airflow. Keeping the woofer structure strong eliminates internal vibrations and the optimised airflow around the cone area keeps movements unhindered, resulting in the ability to transform as much of the energy from the amplifier into movement.
The woofer used in Spektor 1 is developed specifically for this speaker. Even small details like the angle of the cone and the size of the dust cap is optimized for the best possible integration, dispersion and performance.
Low Signal Loss Dali Spektor 2
The primary function of any loudspeaker is to convert the electrical signal from the amplifier into a realistic audio experience in the listening room. Any distortion or coloration of the original signal by drivers or enclosures is by definition a degradation of the sound. Clarity in an audio signal is obtained by low loss of information in combination with creating a smooth and seamless reproduction in both the time and frequency domain.
By using only Dali designed and custom-built drivers, the need for frequency correction in the crossover is eliminated. This enables us to design an exact crossover out of quality components which ensures that the signal loss is close to zero. Another fundamental is the lowering of mechanical distortion.
This to make sure that the connected amplifier will not be exposed to a larger than necessary challenge, causing loss of detail in the signal even before it has the chance to reach the loudspeaker.
Through very low mechanical loss, the most fragile sound details, even at very low listening levels, are preserved. This is the only way to obtain the sensation of ultimate transparency and “liveliness” from reproduced loudspeaker sound.