2016 marked the company’s 27th year in business. It became a year that would see the brand and image of the company’s carbon fibre reference loudspeaker line redefined forever with the introduction of Hypetex’s patented coloured carbon fibre to the range of bespoke finishes within the Geometry Series. Join us as we look back at some of the highlights of 2016 and into the future for what is on the horizon in 2017.
Geometry Series // P1 Collection //
In the weeks prior to the Munich HIGH END Wilson Benesch teased information into the public domain with a series of subtle references to a colourful addition to our product lines. Then in May, an A.C.T. One Evolution arrived in Germany with flashes of red detailing and a beguiling red weave in the carbon fibre. A ‘P1’ arrived after the A.C.T. One Evolution name and the press release stated that the new red finish would be part of a new ‘P1 Collection’, giving rise to a selection of coloured carbon fibre finishes each ascribed with names that evoked the spirit and heritage of motor racing. The first of these was the ‘Enzo’ Red A.C.T. One Evolution P1, but soon a ‘Champagne’ Gold Discovery II P1 would debut in Taiwan, followed by a ‘Silverstone’ Silver A.C.T. One Evolution P1 in Tokyo, before the ‘Ettore’ Blue A.C.T. One Evolution P1 arrived to much fanfare at the Rocky Mountain Audio Fest in Denver, Colorado.
Brought to life by way of an exclusive licence with British supplier, Hypetex. The P1 Collection is an awe-inspiring addition to Wilson Benesch’s range of bespoke finishes. The motor sport inspired names and P1 (position one) moniker recognise the heritage and history behind the development of this cutting edge patented technology at the Silverstone Race Circuit by a team of Formula 1 engineers at Hypetex. A bold statement, the P1 Collection reaffirms Wilson Benesch’s position at the leading edge of materials science and product design within the high-end audio industry.
In February 2017, Wilson Benesch will bring Round 9 of the P1 Collection Tour to ‘Sound & Vision’ The Bristol Show featuring all the P1 Collection coloured carbon fibre finishes.
CES Innovation Award
On November 10th Wilson Benesch announced that it had been made a CES Innovation Award Honouree in the High Performance Home Audio / Video category for it’s A.C.T. One Evolution P1 floorstanding loudspeaker. Judged by a preeminent panel of independent industrial designers, independent engineers and members of the trade media to honour outstanding design and engineering in cutting edge consumer electronics products across 28 product categories, the CES Innovation Award is the most prestigious consumer electronics award a product can receive.
In fact the CES Innovation Award is the third such award that the company has won, with the other two coming in succession in 1997 and 1998 for the original A.C.T. One loudspeaker. Thus the award is a fantastic recognition of the quality of the A.C.T. One Evolution P1 design and in addition it is an acknowledgement of the iterative design process and philosophy through which our products have been developed since the company’s foundation. The A.C.T. One Evolution is the fifth iteration of the A.C.T. loudspeaker line and the CES Innovation Award of 2017, arriving 20-years after the first award in 1997 is the strongest testament to the quality of this iconic design that any product designer could hope for.
On January 5th – 8th 2017, the A.C.T. One Evolution P1 will appear for Round 8 of the P1 Collection Tour at the CES International 2017 courtesy of USA official importer Aaudio Imports.
Exceptional Third Party Endorsements
Seldom does a year go by without independent reviews of our products. However 2016 has been marked by some exceptional press for the company across its product lines. In April 2016, the Square One standmount loudspeaker was announced in Stereophile Magazine USA – ‘Recommended Components List of 2016’. Highly respected HIFI journalist John Marks wrote in his review of the Square One,
The Square One’s are a premium-priced product, to be sure. However, they have much the same technology and the same build quality as Wilson Benesch’s more expensive models, and provide a smaller-scaled version of WB’s house sound: Extremely low distortion, seamless coherence, unfussy easefulness, rounded liquidity of tone, articulate dynamics, and seductively natural imaging and soundstaging… the Square One is a standout performer that I think absolutely deserves a very high class B (restricted LF) rating in our “Recommended Components”. It very well may be over the line into Class A (Restricted Extreme LF)…
John Marks, Stereophile Magazine, The Fifth Element 92, Read the full review here.
Following this glowing recommendation, Werner Ero submitted a two-part system review in consecutive editions of Dutch audio journal ‘Music Emotion’ of the A.C.T. One Evolution floorstanding loudspeaker with an all CH Precision front end. Werner was blown away by the powerful combination that Wilson Benesch and CH Precision form, commenting,
Technological quality is never coincidence and both CH Precision and Wilson Benesch are capable of gaining my utmost respect with these beautiful next generation products.
Werner Ero, Music Emotion, Read the Full Review Part 1 (English) // Dutch Original Here.
Adding of the A.C.T. One Evolution,
Trying to describe the sound of this speaker with typical audiophile parameters is of no real use because of the almost 1:1 sense of scale and rich live experience. Everything is there and everything is in perfect balance. Just like it needs to be, but is seldom experienced within HIFI
Werner Ero, Music Emotion, Read the Full Review Part 2 // Dutch Original Here.
And closing out our year, in November 2016, Trond Torgnesskar contributed a stunning appraisal of the Circle 25 Anniversary Turntable and it’s A.C.T. 25 Tonearm. Writing in leading Norwegian HIFI journal ‘Fidelity’ Trond said,
The Circle 25 is a significant upgrade on what is one of Fidelity’s all time favourite turntables (Circle). The Circle 25 really is quite a lot better, and succeeds in showing even much more expensive competitors how it is done. What a way to honour the Wilson Benesch turntable legacy… Hats off to the good people of Falcon House, Sheffield. You really have done me proud.
Trond Torgnesskar, Fidelity Magazine, Read the Full Review (English) // Norwegian Original Here.
Wilson Benesch will demonstrate the A.C.T. One Evolution loudspeaker, along with the Circle 25 Turntable and CH Precision electronics at ‘Sound & Vision’ The Bristol Show in February 2017.
Wilson Benesch Online In 2017
In October, Wilson Benesch completed the design and build of its own website. Much like our products, the website was crafted entirely in house bringing the company’s online profile into the modern era and offering access to detailed product information and rich media content in a way that was previously not possible. The Torus Infrasonic Generator desktop product page is a particular highlight within the new online ecosystem, but through 2017 users can expect to see our online content grow.
Wilson Benesch will hit the ground running in 2017 with the CES International, swiftly followed by the High End Mässan in Sweden and ‘Sound & Vision’ The Bristol Show in February. Looking beyond that, Wilson Benesch will debut at the inaugural LA Audio Show in June and ‘The Show: Anaheim’ in September, as part of at least five exhibitions across the United States in 2017. This in addition to our annual appearance at the Munich HIGH END and many dates across Europe and Asia throughout 2017.
We very much look forward to meeting each of you at these events and sharing our products and passion for high fidelity sound and music. In closing we would like to thank all of you for your support through 2016.
Wilson Benesch will close from Wednesday 21st December 2016 – Tuesday 3rd December 2017.
From all of the Team here at Falcon House, Wilson Benesch HQ – we wish you a happy holiday and a prosperous new year.
Craig and Christina Milnes
Wilson Benesch Ltd.