PMC Twent5.23i Review
During these unusual times, we have used our downtime constructively and have had a move to fresh new premises next door to our original store. This now incorporates a dedicated high-end cinema and a smaller demo room with which to demonstrate the very best of our HiFi components solely dedicated to music.
We have been proud premier dealers of PMC loudspeakers in the East Midlands for over a decade now, we have provided 100’s of happy customers with these superb-sounding speakers from all around Nottinghamshire and surrounding counties.
So, what better time to give our verdict on the PMC Twenty5.23i loudspeakers. Although they have been released some time ago with lockdown affecting trade everywhere it’s impossible for anybody to book an appointment to listen to them.
Upon first look, they don’t really look any different to the previous model the Twenty5.23’s. The beautifully crafted cabinet with the now familiar “lean back” design. The wood finish we picked for our store was walnut but to be fair they look just as gorgeous in the other three finishes too. This slender cabinet then sits upon two sharply engineered plinths which are decoupled from the cabinet by damping rings.
The one difference I did notice with these new “I” versions is the tweeter is smaller but has a wider surround, this mixed with the re-engineered dispersion grille is to give a greater sense of space around instruments and overall better detail. This change has allowed PMC to give the crossover a redesign too making for better integration between the high through to low frequency responses.
Again, the high-quality speaker terminals remain single wired inputs rather than being bi-wireable like the previous twenty models before it. Let’s face it you are purchasing a small speaker to give a great performance in a smaller room anyway it’s hardly likely you would want to go down the route of bi-amping.
Although PMC’s never seem to be fussy about which electronics you put with them, I decided to use the sweet sounding Arcam SA30 integrated amplifier with a streamer on board. This was coupled with Chord Epic X speaker cables and of course a Chord Signature Array power cable.
Now to the listening, I first played an old favourite of mine through Tidal Eva Cassidy’s “Live at Blues Alley” album, the track, “Stormy Monday”. Straight away this was sounding like we are in for a musical treat. Bearing in mind the speakers have had less than 50 hours running in time. The soundstage was incredible the openness of the recording faithfully filling the room giving that real sense of “being there”. As the track made its progress there was a definite authority to the bass that these speakers were controlling, it was taut and timely and the scale was huge considering the tiny stature of the speakers.
As Eva’s sweet vocals demand ever more attention, I decided to just let the track play right through to the end, leaving me with a sense of “wow” despite the fact I’ve probably heard that track a thousand times over, hearing it again on this system still made the hair on the back of my neck stand up.
I then went to an album that came out in 2017 “Bicep” by Bicep. The track was “Glue” I believe this was used in a fairly recent car commercial. Straight away the beat kicked in with a heavy kick drum rearing itself every few seconds. The timing was fast and energetic but the control was there not getting confused or smeared allowing for every rhythmic beat to be easily expressed. The haunting vocal samples leading us through the music to its final conclusion.
Next, I played a track from an old favourite from the album “Beneath the Skin” by Of Monsters and Men. The first track on the album “Crystals”. This track is very lively from the start and as the symbols crash, there is a great sense of grandeur. This demonstrated how fantastic the improvements to the tweeters on these little speakers are. They sounded so realistic but at the same time not harsh or bright. The female vocals expressed so much emotion, I was so engaged in the music I lost sense of time and let the track play to the very end.
In conclusion, these speakers are a big improvement from their predecessors, they are very well balanced, agile and lively. I’ve always been a fan of the PMC sound and I’m glad to say these have blown me away yet again.