“Let our rigorous testing and reviews be your guidelines to A/V equipment – not marketing slogans”
Facebook Youtube Twitter instagram pinterest

ADAM A7 Monitor Speakers Review

by Scott Dente March 02, 2010
ADAM A7 Monitor Speakers

ADAM A7 Monitor Speakers

  • Product Name: A7 Monitor Speakers
  • Manufacturer: ADAM Professional Audio
  • Performance Rating: StarStarStarStarStar
  • Value Rating: StarStarStarStarStar
  • Review Date: March 02, 2010 17:45
  • MSRP: $ 1149/pr
  • Buy Now

Woofer: 7" (175 mm) carbon sandwich
Tweeter: 4.5 sq. in.  ART
Equiv. Diaphragm area: 2.5" (60 mm)
Velocity transform ratio: 4:1
Amplifiers: 2 x 50W/80W Class D (ICE)
Input Sensitivity    -∞ to +10 dB
Low shelve > 6 kHz    ±6 dB
High shelve < 150 Hz    ±6 dB
Tweeter gain    ±4 dB
Inputs: XLR / RCA
Frequency response: 46 Hz - 35 kHz
THD > 80 Hz: <1.5 %
Long term output: >105 dB
Max. peak: >115 dB
Crossover frequency: 2200 Hz
Input impedance: 10 Kohm
Weight: 17.6 lb (8 kg)
Magnetically shielded: Yes
Dimensions: 13" (330 mm) H x 7.5" (185 mm) W x 11" (280 mm) D
Warranty: 5 Years

Pros

  • Sparkling treble
  • Focused bass response
  • Power switch and volume on front
  • Small footprint/ big sound
  • Great price for quality

Cons

  • None worth mentioning

Introduction

The ADAM A7 ($1149/pr) is a two way near-field studio monitor with the aforementioned tweeter and a 6.5 in. carbon mid/bass driver. This is all powered by two 50-watt amplifiers (one per driver.) Housed in an attractive black cabinet that weighs 18 lbs and measures 13in. high x 7.5in wide x 11in deep, the top front edges are beveled to reduce surface reflections from the tweeter.

Confused about what AV Gear to buy or how to set it up? Join our Exclusive Audioholics E-Book Membership Program!

Recent Forum Posts:

Cristofori posts on March 08, 2010 01:12
The Adams mated to a subwoofer would sound better than anything Audioholics has ever tested, in small and large rooms alike. The one exception would be the NHT Xd. But then, even this design is not typical of consumer speakers and is closer to active professional monitors.
So what say you Audioholics? Would a complete test of the Adams mated to the best sub you know of sound better than any set up you currently use or ever had before? Seriously, I'd be the first in line to buy this stuff upon that revelation.

Even though you gave a stellar review of the Adams, you said no such thing, so apparently not using a sub must have been the deal breaker!
Cristofori posts on March 08, 2010 01:05
TLS Guy, post: 695676
So cramming seven amps in a case with powerful processor and other electronics, and than wasting a half to 75% of your power in passive crossover, will be more reliable, than smaller amps in a space big enough to properly ventilate? Are you kidding?

What is the deal about the set up? Just plug the XLR outs from your pre pro and plug them into the XLR on the back of each speaker. Easy isn't it? Then do your set up the same as now.

Receiver get to be a dumber and less defensible product with each passing month.
OK, I admit that I don't do HT or know much about studio monitors, and I don't think of my amp/receiver as “7 little amps” but one single unit with one power source.

But my fundamental question is if the set up you propose is so wonderful, why isn't everybody doing it? Most knowledgeable audio enthusiasts reference systems don't contain a bunch of little active speakers other than subwoofers, including those who run this website (I think), much less the average lay person.

Another question is how many affordable preamps are available that have all the traditional inputs, HT processing, with enough balanced XLR inputs to create an active/HT system that also doesn't happen to be ugly as sin (most pro gear)? My guess is not many.

Also, aren't you the guy who has the bizarre, custom room full of vintage audio equipment? In one post your telling me how great this stuff is (which I agree), and how we should really admire older technology more than we do (I also agree). Now your an ultra-progressive who is belittling and calling for the immediate destruction of traditional A/V set ups still used by the vast majority of people? If I really felt that way about the active speaker set up, I wouldn't be messing around with anything else.

I've read the review here on the Adam's, and although I have no doubt they are awesome studio monitor speakers, probably one of the best, and I don't doubt the authors sincerity, there was none of the “rigorous testing” usually associated with other reviews I've read here, just Absolute Sound/Sterophile style talk. Also, at the end of the review the author states: “Small but powerful, they will be a welcome addition to any project studio or any mix engineer's arsenal of nearfield monitors”.

Why not recommend them to just any old lay person as a regular pair of home speakers if they are so obviously superior and simple to use?

P.S. No offence on the bizarre, custom room comment. That was actually a compliment!
Tumara Baap posts on March 07, 2010 19:59
Regarding the point of limited dynamics: Even when faced with a pro monitor with such a shortcoming, it can still sound better than just about every consumer speaker. This is because other performance parameters have been scientifically demonstrated to correlate better with end-point outcomes (listener preference).
Secondly, because of the engineering advantages conferred by active design (not to mention rigorous and rational engineering itself that places final performance over marketing brownie points), pro-monitor dynamics belie their compact size. So much so, that the dynamics of active two-way eight or ten inch monitors from Mackie, JBL LSR Pro, or Genelec can easily keep up with large consumer tower speakers that reviewers routinely fawn over.
Tumara Baap posts on March 07, 2010 18:50
gene, post: 693814
I suspect the Adams would not fair so well in a larger room for theater applications as they would be severly limited in dynamics. Hence one of the reasons why they market them as Nearfield monitors.

The Adams mated to a subwoofer would sound better than anything Audioholics has ever tested, in small and large rooms alike. The one exception would be the NHT Xd. But then, even this design is not typical of consumer speakers and is closer to active professional monitors.

There is a lot of misconception as to what a nearfield monitor is. The professional world deals with speakers that are used in huge venues on the one hand to monitors sitting a few feet away on a meter bridge. In the early years of audio, a nearfield was designed with on-axis performance and directionality in mind, the idea being to minimize the role of the room in a mix. These are no longer considerations of nearfield design. Wide dispersion is a laudable goal regardless of how far you sit from the monitor and psycoacoustics research has upended lore about how the mixing room translates into the domestic space of a consumer. In actuality, the term nearfield is a marketing relic that is nearly meaningless. As long as the outputs from each transducer are temporally blended within the few feet of travel to the listen's ears, it's good enough to be marketed as a nearfield. A really good pair will sound just as great three away as 10 feet away (if not better).
TLS Guy posts on March 07, 2010 15:44
Cristofori, post: 695612
True, as I said in before, the average person can't even get their basic HT systems to work right and sound good much less something like what TLS Guy proposed.

Then there is the question of reliability. It would seem to me that one high quality central unit from a good, dedicated amp manufacturer would be more reliable and practical then having seven or eight little amps all about. What happens if one of the active speakers or something else malfunctions, causing your whole system to be out of whack?

Not that such a set up couldn't be done or work well, but the active speakers/amps would need to be of the highest quality, and such a set up would be mostly for the very knowledgeable, pro audio techies only.

So cramming seven amps in a case with powerful processor and other electronics, and than wasting a half to 75% of your power in passive crossover, will be more reliable, than smaller amps in a space big enough to properly ventilate? Are you kidding?

What is the deal about the set up? Just plug the XLR outs from your pre pro and plug them into the XLR on the back of each speaker. Easy isn't it? Then do your set up the same as now.

Receiver get to be a dumber and less defensible product with each passing month.
Post Reply