FALCON BBC LS 3/5a Gold Badge in an “OVERKILL” system?!

FALCON LS 3/5a Gold Badge mini monitor

.
Recently I chanced upon a short listening session of the Falcon LS 3/5a Gold Badge mini monitor at their newly appointed local (Malaysia) distributor, AV Designs Sdn Bhd. At that time, they were preparing the launch event for the said mini monitor, and ‘chance’ has it that my audiophile buddies and I were there to look at their offerings of some of their finest AV projectors from JVC and Epson.
.
.
Curiosity had me asking for a listen to the said mini monitors which were placed at the main floor of their premises. There and then, the well known and ever passionate LS 3/5a ‘Guru and Collector’, Mr. Joseph Ki (passionately nicknamed JoKiamong the LS 3/5a community) whom have recently joined AV Designs as a partner, took the opportunity to introduce me to the Gold Badge iteration of the famed BBC mini monitors.
.
.
I have a fair share of experiences of owning and listening to some serious mini monitors from different brands, including a few iterations of the LS 3/5a. However, I was quite taken by the sheer enveloping soundstage and soundscape of the Falcon LS 3/5a Gold Badge. In short, I was in disbelief…so much so, I asked my accompanying audiophile friends to listen and verify (without telling them what my experience was?). Their finding was similar to mine,…and in agreement, we added that within that open soundstage, the imaging still retained its coherency, delineation, boundary, separation and density. The next disbelief occurred, all of us decided to place an order…literally, placed our money in where our mouth is!
.
.
I wished you all could have seen the faces of JoKi and his partners at AV Designs…jaw-dropped and bewildered!
.
.
“Hey guys, you all owned big loudspeakers from Gryphon Audio, Dynaudio and Focal…are you serious?!”…YES, WE ARE SERIOUS!
.
Qualification: the decision to purchase the Falcon LS 3/5a Gold Badge mini monitors was not intended to replace our current reference loudspeakers…(in case any reader is wondering?)
.
.
Each of us received our pair in the following month, and straight away hooked them up with our respective main system. All of us enjoyed the same positive result as per our first exposure at AV Designs…
.
.
I hooked up my pair of Falcon LS 3/5a Gold Badge with my reference digital source; the Gryphon Audio Ethos CD player, FM Acoustics 268C preamplifier, Vitus Audio Masterpiece MP-M201 (AF edition), and with cables mainly from Skogrand Cables and Vermouth Audio. Some may say that its an “overkill system” for a pair of mini monitors…but it may be a test and gauge for their ultimate performance…(actually, I am lazy to set up another system to play with them?!)
.
.
I played an ol’ CD soundtrack from Street Fighters 2 The Animated Movie ( Q Sound/ Sony Records SRCL 2937) where I found the vocal of Miss. Ryoko Shinohara at “Itoshisa to Setsunasa to Kokoro Tsuyosa to” (track 5) reminded me of the same sensually captivating experience I got from the same playing with the B&W Silver Signature monitor speakers with the Mark Levinson 20.6 class A mono amplifiers. The Falcon brought back a very familiar voice/quality that pushed me into the hobby then,…like more than 20 years ago!
.
.
To me, what was captivating was the layer of bloom at the vocalization that rounded up the edges of each word in the lyrics. The transition from each word to another in the lyrics was ever so smooth. It showcased the talent and artistry of Miss. Shinohara to carry through the entire line of the lyric with the ease of a single breath…also reminded me of how young she was then (and myself?!).
.
Equally impressive, I found Miss. Shinohara voice was not drown by the heavy electronic instruments at “GooD-LucK” (track 12). Her presentation and vocalization remained coherent, independent and palpable…and sensually sweet.
.
.
Fast forward to my latest acquisition of Japanese Anime soundtrack, DRAGON BALL SUPER (Nagara Group/ Nippon Columbia COZC-1387-8), where I found the recording/ presentation to be slightly harsh and slightly noisy. Surprisingly, the Falcon LS 3/5a Gold Badge managed to tune down that harshness and (yet) maintain the legibility of the total presentation. I would add that there was (even) a hint of refinement to a supposedly slightly noisy recording. Some may argued that the finding was an indication of the added coloration of the Falcon LS 3/5a Gold Badge. However, I would add that I have yet to experience an uncolored (performance) audio component,…and that the above finding was also an indication of the coherency of the design and product.
.
.
As “The Beat Goes On” by Patricia Barber from her album Companion (FIM XRCD 027) being played, I knew that I was treated with such rich, luscious and attractive midrange…reminded me of extra toppings of your choice on your favorite donuts (or whatever your cravings maybe…pizza?). Instruments just flowered and bloomed to a state of believability,…without exaggeration of detail, and outline. The presentation of the recording venue, The Green Mill, Uptown Chicago was rightly spacious and open,…which was not an easy feat for a pair of mini monitor (and why I bought them!). Another feat by the Falcon LS 3/5a Gold Badge that I noticed here, was its ability to project stable and solid image of the musicians and the lead vocalist amidst that spacious and open soundstage.
.
.
When it came to dynamic and bass, I would say that among the digital sources that I have the pleasure to experience (and of my mind), the Gryphon Audio Ethos CD player held the strongest position! Here, I believed having that source, the Falcon LS 3/5a Gold Badge’s lower registry performance would be exposed. Surprisingly, the ‘strongmid range of those mini monitors gave out an impression of full bandwidth from each instrument in “Black Magic Woman“. Whatever I expected to hear of each instrument was there,…however, in my sizable audio room and without the assistance of subwoofers, in term of feel, I must admit that I did not feel the dynamism of the low frequencies rushing at me.
.
Rest assured that what was audible of those instruments from the Falcon LS 3/5a Gold Badge was enough to convince one of ‘certainrealism and naturalness.
.
.
Enough said, I should go back listening to my Falcon LS 3/5a Gold Badge…
.