Well, price is all relative for these kinds of things and "one man's ceiling is another man's floor". Our (PS Audio) marketing copy aside, Andrew from Hifi News apparently really liked the speaker and it's the probably the best review that we've had in company history. Our price is a bit higher in the UK because of shipping/import costs. The reverse is true of someone like Harbeth in the US market even more so. This is our most expensive product (with less expensive units to follow) so there will certainly be higher value quotient stuff if you don't need as much output or bass extension....the aspen FR30 is every bit a sensational design and – to cut to the chase – nothing short of one of the high-end bargains of the moment... If you're in the market for speakers in this sector, listen to them – they're a bargain.
I'm always moderately fascinated at descriptions Hi-Fi Influencers come up with in order to justify whatever it is the consumer gets at MSRP. Attempting to parse word meanings often gets a reader more confused than when they started reading. Here, the presenter writes how the product is 'one of' a group of bargains (not sure how large the group is as he doesn't tell us). He twice states how it is a bargain, just to make sure we get his point. But then qualifies it all, letting readers know that the bargain is limited to 'the moment', whatever that might be. I guess tomorrow it might not be a bargain?
I think it is reasonable to ask the writer how it is a bargain? After all, it's a passive loudspeaker selling for twenty-eight thousand English pounds ('new car territory' as the writer writes it), so it's not like something you're going to find discounted in the scratch and dent bargain-bin at Crutchfield. The only explanation given is that a shopper can always spend a lot more for loudspeakers (the unstated implication being that a more expensive product having similar characteristics to the PS loudspeaker necessarily makes the PS loudspeaker good value at it's price point, by comparison. I'm not sure that 'good value at an already expensive price point' is a bargain, per se, but YMMV).
Paul brings it all back home when he states (in the manufacturer's blurb) that his goal was to "Get close to the magic I had experienced [when listening to Arnie's IRS Reference speakers in Harry Pearson's closet], but at prices more people could afford." How many more is it, Paul?
Actually, in the world of hi-fi, the cynic in me says that if an item actually does something that you can hear, it's ahead of the game, regardless of price. And nothing against the price of this PS loudspeaker; I'm sure it costs a lot to build something like this..., from a fit and finish standpoint it might not even be over-priced for what you get. What I'm asking, is that writers think about the words they are using, when coming up with
advertisementsreviews for this stuff. Given it's overuse, I suggest that all reviewers enact a unilateral ban on the word 'bargain'. At least for anything that costs over three figures, or possibly the low fours, tops.
Considering how many hifi audio brands are out there (dozens of new ones at every audio show, it seems like), there aren't a ton of large, high output full range (credible 20-25 Hz in room) passive tower speakers. I think that, in this range, it would be things like the B&W 802 D4, Magico A5, Kef Blade Meta (for a bit more) the Revel Salon2 for a bit less. Focal Sopra 2 in the low $30's and $37k for a Wilson Sasha DAW, which sounds awesome but has about 6 dB less output and less extension in the bass. Any others come to top of mind?
I would guess when saying "of the moment" he means, at the time of publishing, because the product and pricing landscape is changing. There are also a lot of hifi speakers that are great but rather long in the tooth. The Revel Salon2 was released 15 years ago and is still a great bargain for what it is but it isn't "new".