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Paradigm Persona Series Loudspeakers Preview & Demo



  • Product Name: Persona
  • Manufacturer: Paradigm
  • Review Date: September 16, 2016 00:00
  • MSRP: $3,500/ea (B); $7.5k/ea (C); $5k/ea (5F); $12.5k/ea (7F); $17.5k/ea (9H); $6.5k/ea (Sub)
  • First Impression: Pretty Cool

Paradigm has just stepped up their high end game with the  introduction of the Persona™ Series. Developed over five years, this flagship lineup, entirely designed, engineered, and Crafted in Canada, is said to provide an unprecedented level of realism and transparency.  Billed as the company’s most ambitious design to date, Persona was brought to life by a team of Paradigm and Anthem engineers, leveraging over 34 years of acoustical development, vertical integrated manufacturing, and state-of-the-art design and engineering to create a leading sonic platform and usher in a new level of performance for the Paradigm brand.

“We were able to transform what began as a bold concept speaker into a renaissance for the brand,” said Paul Grove, SVP Global Sales and Marketing for Paradigm. “After receiving rave reviews about our Concept 4F, which debuted at Munich High End 2015, we knew we had something special, and the foundation to create the best sounding speakers we’ve ever produced.”

One of the keys to Persona’s luxury and value is the use of Beryllium, revered as the absolute best diaphragm material by many loudspeaker designers, typically found only in speakers costing considerably more than Persona. Specifically formulated to be exponentially stiffer and significantly lighter than other premium diaphragm materials, beryllium enables superior transient response and virtual transparency, with low audible coloration.

Paradigm’s Persona is said to be the only loudspeaker in its class to achieve this level of performance using Beryllium material for both midrange and tweeter drivers. Every model in the Persona Series features Truextent® Pure Beryllium driver systems, and each model achieves a truly unexpected level of high-resolution detail, depth and dynamics thanks in part to rare, extraordinary Beryllium.

“The creation of this series has been a true journey and allowed us to push the engineering limits of our technological capabilities at Paradigm,” said Oleg Bogdanov, Paradigm’s Director of Product Development. “Our team can’t wait for everyone to hear these speakers; it’s a series of which we’re incredibly proud.”

Check out our YouTube video interview with Rob Sample of Paradigm to get more details about this new amazing series of loudspeakers from Paradigm.

Paradigm Persona Series Loudspeaker Interview

persona sub1     persona C     persona bs

Paradigm Persona Series Loudspeakers

Persona is comprised of 7 models:

  • Persona 9H Flagship – $17,500/each (US MSRP) Hybrid Floorstanding Loudspeaker, with Four 8.5” Active Bass Drivers & Anthem Room Correction (ARC™).
  • Persona 7F – $12,500/each (US MSRP) Passive Floorstanding Loudspeaker, with Two 8.5” Bass Drivers.
  • Persona 5F – $8,500/each (US MSRP) Passive Floorstanding Loudspeaker, with Three 7” Bass Drivers.
  • Persona 3F – $5,000/each (US MSRP) Passive Floorstanding Loudspeaker, with Two 7” Bass Drivers.
  • Persona B $3,500/each (US MSRP) Passive Bookshelf / Stand-Mount Loudspeaker.
  • Persona C – $7,500/each (US MSRP) Passive Center Channel Loudspeaker.
  • Persona SUB – $6,500/each (US MSRP) Six 8” Driver Subwoofer with 1700W Continuous / 3400W Peak Power.

Optional Accessories:

  • B-29 Stand – For use with Persona B Bookshelf / Stand-Mount Loudspeaker
  • B-18C Stand – For use with Persona C Center Channel Speaker

Advanced Technology (all models)

  • Truextent® Pure Beryllium Driver Material – The 1-inch tweeter domes and 7-inch midrange driver cones of the Persona Loudspeaker line are made of 99.9 per cent pure Truextent Beryllium, an ultra-high performance material found in no other speaker at this price level. Truextent Beryllium cones are lightweight and stiff, with instant, detailed dynamic response, vanishingly low distortion and no coloration.
    Persona C includes a 4-inch midrange driver, while the other models all include 7-inch midrange drivers.
  • Perforated Phase-Aligning (PPA™) Driver Lenses – A patent pending technology for Beryllium tweeter and mid-range drivers, this exclusive design actively blocks out-of-phase frequencies to smooth output without coloring the sound.
  • Ultra-High-Excursion X-PAL™ Woofer Drivers – Mounted in a dual-directional array within isolated chambers, efficiently damped to eliminate internal standing waves. Differential Drive motors exhibit more efficient heat dissipation for extreme power handling. The unique low-profile two-part construction, with I-beam cross-sectional support arms that lock the flat outer cone to the voice-coil, and overmolded ART Surrounds, bonded to the outer cone, produce truly huge bass with no threat of flexing or distortion.
  • Paradigm’s patentedActive Ridge Technology (ART™) Surrounds – Crafted in-house using audiophile-grade injection-molded thermoplastic elastomer, and then overmolded directly onto driver cones, the exclusive ART Surround design achieves greater excursion than any standard surround. With ART Surrounds, Persona drivers generate a 3dB gain in distortion-free output (50 per cent greater output).   
    † US patents: D654,479S and 8,340,340B2.
  • Elegantly Curved Waveguide Cabinet – Designed, engineered and Crafted in Canada, this heavy duty, non-resonant cabinet is an intricate system of rigid enclosures, braced and damped to defeat vibrations and internal standing waves. Offered in a variety of beautiful finishes, its presence makes a forceful statement, but its performance remains utterly transparent. 

Hybrid Technology (exclusive to Persona 9H)persona 9h

  • Dual 700W Ultra-Class D Amplifiers – Two powerful onboard amplifiers deliver an astonishing 1400W RMS of clean, continuous power even at lifelike performance levels. Adaptive PWM (Pulse Width Modulation) optimizes amplifier efficiency and smooths supply variations, for instantaneous reactions and reference-quality performance with bulletproof reliability.
  • ARC™ (Anthem Room Correction) – The powered woofer section of the Persona 9H Hybrid includes exclusive Anthem Room Correction (ARC) Technology. ARC measures low-frequency sound output in your room and compares it to optimal response curves that account for spatial anomalies. The advanced algorithms of ARC then effectively remove these anomalies, leaving only the ideal standard: realistically blended, natural-sounding bass performance, in any listening space.
  •  Inverse Differential Mid-Range Drive Unit – This exclusive design utilizes a compact voice coil and powerful dual magnets to achieve exponential levels of output with vanishingly low distortion.
  • Advanced Dual Voice Coil Systems – The Persona 9H Hybrid features dual voice coil systems with high-temp wire (tolerances to 600°F) wound on resilient Kapton formers, supported by high-excursion Nomex spiders. This 1.5-inch motor design packs the effects of a super-extended throw into a compact enclosure. In addition, the die-cast woofer baskets feature integrated heat sinks and AVS™ Airflow Ventilation System Cooling, for higher power handling with less power compression.

Initial Impressions

We were invited to a personal demo of the Persona speakers to hear first hand if they live up to hype and Paradigm's reputation.  First it's important to note that the room acoustics were non ideal (as is the case with most trade show demos).  Luckily the Paradigm 9H comes equipped with Anthem's legendary ARC room correction system.  This allowed Paradigm to tighten up the bass and overcome some of the room challenges.  

We got to hear some interesting audio tracks in this demo, some obscure and some more well known.  In each case one thing was a constant; vocal clarity.  The first track we listened to really caught our attention at how good the stereo separation was.  Next up were heard a song from Lyle Lovett which really showed off the bass capabilities of the 9F.  Despite the room limitations, you could really appreciate how well controlled the bass was thanks to the incredible integrated active woofers and ARC correction system working in tandem. They played a track from a pop/rock band called Datta to show off the massive dynamic capabilities of the speaker.  One of the engineers also noted that due to the high sensitivity of these speakers (96dB @ 1 meter/2.83V) in conjuncture with the active bass system, they were able to reach theatrical SPL levels in the room with under 100 watts/CH from the mono-bloc amps powering them.  The track was a bit bright (likely attributed to the recording), but the bass was quite epic and dynamics impressive.  

We quickly realized that these are speakers we'd want to take a closer listen to in our own listening space.  So, as we were typing up this report at the show, we were also arranging review samples.  I have particular interest in the model 3F and may also arrange one of our reviewers to check out the 9F, so stay tuned.  

 persona demo room

Paradigm Persona 9F Demo @ CEDIA 2016

The entire Person Series is available in four premium automotive finishes: Vanta High Gloss Black, Harmony High Gloss White, Aria Metallic Blue, and Sonic Metallic Silver.

Persona will begin shipping to exclusive Paradigm dealers in November 2016.

Visit www.paradigm.com/persona for more information.

About Paradigm

Since 1982, innovative design, advanced materials, in-house manufacturing and state-of-the-art engineering have made Paradigm an international leader in speaker design. With more than 400 industry awards for audio excellence and numerous rave reviews from around the world, Paradigm is committed to staying at the leading edge of speaker technology, consistently achieving the ultimate in sound for music and home theater. For more information, please visit: paradigm.com

Unless otherwise indicated, this is a preview article for the featured product. A formal review may or may not follow in the future.

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Gene manages this organization, establishes relations with manufacturers and keeps Audioholics a well oiled machine. His goal is to educate about home theater and develop more standards in the industry to eliminate consumer confusion clouded by industry snake oil.

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