Floor-standing Speakers

Eficion F300 Floor-Standing Speakers

ARTICLE INDEX

Introduction to the Eficion F300 Speaker

It's hard to believe, but I first encountered the Eficion F300 loudspeaker almost four years ago, in the fall of 2008, at the Rocky Mountain Audio Fest. Then priced $2000 less than currently, the F300 so impressed Bob Walters, the new head of the Bay Area Audiophile Society, when he first heard it that he urged me to take a listen.

I too was mighty impressed with what I heard. As I wrote in my show blog for Stereophile, "I really loved the detail, control, and palpable, lifelike presentation the F300 brought to Cookie Marenco's Blue Coast Records first hybrid SACD of all acoustic folk and blues… Everything was clean and lovely.

"On Trevor Pinnock's Gramophone Award-winning recording of Bach's Sixth and final Brandenburg, the speaker absolutely nailed the midrange of period instruments. Highs were a mite brittle, but that probably had to do with the cabling. Given the excellent way in which the F300 enables voices to hang in space, I resolved to eventually audition and review this speaker on my reference system."

EFICION F300 LOUDSPEAKER SPECIFICATIONS

  • Design: 3-way 4-driver, Ported
  • Drivers: One 2.3" x 0.3" Ribbon Super Tweeter, One 5.1" x 1.4" Air Motion Transformer Tweeter, One 6.5" Carbon Fiber Midrange, One 12" Carbon Fiber Woofer
  • MFR: 25 Hz - 40 kHz
  • Sensitivity: 89dB/2.83V/1m
  • Nominal Impedance: 8 Ohms
  • Crossover: 110 Hz, 1.3 kHz
  • Dimensions: 42.5" H x 15.6" W x 17" D
  • Weight: 158 Pounds/each
  • MSRP: $16,900/pair USD
  • Eficion
  • SECRETS Tags: Speakers, Eficion, Floor-standing

It was at that time that I made the acquaintance of Peigen Jiang, who brings in the speaker from China. Based in Washington state, Peigen (or P.J. to some) helped design portions of the speaker, which is manufactured by Aurum Cantus.

A year later, at RMAF 2009, I discovered that further refinements to the Eficion F300 had produced "a more controlled and detailed sound." I also was greatly impressed with how inserting Stillpoints Ultra SS equipment supports between the upper and lower modules of this two-module speaker, and using Stillpoints Ultra SS feet on the bottom of the cabinet, had added extra life, air and dimensionality to the sound, and improved bass control.

By October, 2010, when I returned to RMAF and wrote a blog about the excellent Eficion F250 loudspeaker, the Eficion F300 / Stillpoints Ultra SS combo had joined my reference system. We had initially considered the F250, but agreed that it would not have sufficient bass for a room its size. In one sense, that's too bad. At the second, 2012 installment of T.H.E. Show Newport Beach, the F250, sounded wonderful paired with Z-Infinity customizable tube amplification.

The F300 remained in my system until June 2012, after I had blogged it for both Secrets at the California Audio Show in July 2011, and for Stereophile at the second T.H.E. Show Newport Beach in June 2012. During the close to two years that I listened to the F300 frequently, I used it to review any number of recordings and components.

I blogged the F300 for Secrets in my July 2011 California Audio Show blog, archived in The Cave. At that show, the F300 was paired with a Plinius SA103 125 watt/channel solid-state amp, old BAT 3iX tube preamp, Oppo 83SE used as a transport, Cary Audio Xciter DAC, and an assortment of unfancy cabling from Furutech, Monster, XSymphony, and Nordost.

"CAS II marked the first time that the Eficion F300 was shown with its new crossover," I wrote. "Judging from the truly lovely, grounded sound I heard from the speaker, with copious air, ear-catching three-dimensionality, and a very clear depiction of room dimensions, I decided to get my upper modules upgraded.

"In a room with no room treatment whatsoever, the voices of both baritone Matthias Goerne and soprano Elly Ameling sounded absolutely correct in timbre. (I've heard both live, so I know). The pianos accompanying each singer also sounded true, with no trace of extra resonance, ring, or change of tone as drivers shifted one to the other. As I wrote in my notes, "'Simply beautiful full range sound, with enrapturing air and depth. Gets all the warmth. Bass was very deep, though needing the benefit of room treatment for additional solidity. I didn't want to leave.'"

Happily, with a similar pair of F300s installed at home, I didn't really have to. Once I had finished writing my show blogs, I returned to enjoying the speaker at home.