It’s interesting to see how the consumer’s approach towards audio products has changed over time. There is a huge section of end users that give a whole lot of importance to utility, even in a product as simple as bookshelf speakers. Versatility of usage, along with complete satisfaction of spatial requirements, is a major criterion that people are laying emphasis on. And this need of the customer has lead to a new breed of audio specialists called custom installers. The Episode Series speakers from US-based Snap AV cater to this bunch of custom installers. We reviewed the Episode 500 Series Sat speakers for our bookshelf speaker special issue.
OUT OF THE BOX Though the name 500 Series Sat Speakers can be a tad deceptive, we find it very suggestive. We have already mentioned about the ‘utility wave’. And the Episode 500 speakers are the best example to explain the versatility aspect, wherein they are essentially satellite speakers that can also be used as bookshelf speakers if desired. The mini form factor of the speakers is very inviting. Particularly in cities like Mumbai where space is more premium than air. The thought of having a speaker set that consumes space lesser than a square foot is so exciting! The speakers also come with a wall mount arrangement so that you can simply hang them on a wall. The wall mount also seems to be a good idea to save the high glossy finish on the speakers from scratches. The speakers are available in two basic finishes (white and black) with almost a ton of gloss poured over them. For the cabinet, the designers have used MDF which accounts for the light weight and low maintenance requirements.
TECHNOLOGY The Episode 500 Series Sat speakers are as simple as you can get – a basic 2-way bass reflex design that incorporates a 1” Titanuim dome tweeter and a 4.5” injection cone with a high-temp voice coil. As we understand it, the only concern for the engineers at Episode must be to negate the small size of the speakers and somehow get the lower end extension that can suffice for comfortably categorising the speakers as bookshelf units. For this they have implemented the tried and tested method of using a precision tuned tapered bass reflex port. With this they claim to achieve the desired low frequency response worthy of a good bookshelf speaker. Whether it is able to do so or not is what we find out in our next section.
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1 - 3
The product is bad in almost every aspect. We strongly advise against purchasing this product.
4 - 6
An average product that isn't the best you can buy, but isn't the worst either.
7 - 8
Product with this rating is highly recommended because it's priced sensibly, has a good set of features and performs well.
9 - 10
Exceptionally excellent product with features and performance unlike any we've seen in the past. A must-have for everyone!
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