Canton Chrono 5.1 Home Theater Speaker System

ARTICLE INDEX

Introduction

Canton has been making upscale speakers since 1972, with acclaimed models such as the Vento and Karat series. Besides sounding great, Cantons tend to look really nice, which adds to the cost of the speaker.

The new Chrono line (that’s Chrono, no “s”) is intended to achieve a happy medium in price/performance by mating the technology and components of Canton’s higher end speakers with a less elegant physical appearance. So does the old adage about not judging a book by its cover apply to speakers as well? Yes, in this case.

Specifications

  • Chrono 509 Front Main Left/Right
  • Design: 3-Way, Ported
  • MFR: 52 Hz - 24.4 kHz, ± 3 dB
  • Nominal Impedance: 6 Ohms
  • Dimensions: 41.3" H x 7.5" W x 11.4" D
  • Weight: 45 Pounds/Each
  • MSRP: $2,000/Pair USA
  • Chrono 505 Center
  • Design: 2-1/2-Way, Ported
  • MFR: 70 Hz - 24.4 kHz ± 3 dB
  • Nominal Impedance: 6 Ohms
  • Dimensions: 6.7" H x 17.9" W x 12.2" D
  • Weight: 20.2 Pounds
  • MSRP: $650 USA
  • Chrono 502 Surrounds
  • Design: 2-Way, Ported
  • MFR: 62 Hz - 24.4 kHz, ± 3 dB
  • Nominal Impedance: 6 Ohms
  • Dimensions: 14.2" H x 7.5" W x 11" D
  • Weight: 15 Pounds/Each
  • Chrono AS 525 Subwoofer
  • Design: Ported
  • Driver: 9" Aluminum Cone
  • Dimensions: 17.7" H x 10" W x 14.6" D
  • Weight: 28.6 Pounds
  • MSRP: $600 USA
  • Canton USA

The Design

The Chrono series consists of two floor-standing front speaker models, the 507 and 509. For this review, Canton provided a pair of the 509’s, which is a four-driver, three-way design. Note that the group-photo at the top of the article shows the 507 speakers.

The 502 surround speakers are a vented bookshelf-size two-way design, which use the same seven-inch aluminum woofer/midrange and one-inch aluminum-manganese tweeter as the floor-standers.  You can also choose the wall-mounted 501 surround speakers, a sealed-box design with the same tweeter but a slighter smaller, six-inch woofer.

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The 505 center-channel speaker uses two 6" drivers, one as midrange and one as a woofer, in a 2-½ way design. The two 6" drivers flank the 1" tweeter in an MTM configuration. Technically, it’s a WTW/M arrangement, since the crossovers route deep bass to both 6" drivers, while directing midrange signals to only one of them. The center channel 505’s tweeter is oriented horizontally with the midrange/woofers.

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Rounding out the package is the Chrono ASA 525 SC subwoofer. The 525 SC uses a front-firing, 9" aluminum (wave surround) speaker, and incorporates Canton’s SC (Speaker Control) technology, which is said to improve deep bass response. Given the rather modest size of the sub (the cabinet is only 10" wide by 14.6" deep), I set my expectations regarding low bass accordingly.

The Chrono line uses the drivers and crossover technologies of Canton’s Ergo speaker series (the Ergos sit below the well-known Vento and Karat lines, followed by the top-of-the-line Reference series). The Chronos all use Canton’s ADT-25 tweeter, a variant of the same tweeter used in Canton’s higher-end speaker lines. For the Chrono series, the tweeter uses a new flared baffle, which is claimed to increase the off-axis response of the driver. I’ve listened to other Cantons using the ADT-25 tweeter (Canton CD 3200 Active speakers), and found in both subjective listening and bench testing that they had excellent off-axis response. The fact that Canton’s engineers are still trying to wring that last bit of performance out of the driver is testament to their skills.

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