Capital Audiofest 2022 show reports
So I stopped by the Pure Audio Project room on Saturday at Capitol Audio Fest and got a good presentation from the owner of PAP, Ze’ev. I really enjoy their speakers and think they sound fantastic. I asked Ze’ev what he thought of passive crossovers versus active crossovers, so here’s his response:

Transcript Excerpt: “…it’s very hard to say which one is preferable or you know recommended because they’re different. In the active crossover we are using two-way of course like with the passive, but it’s a 12 DB slope, it’s a second order and it electronically crossing meaning there’s a very good control on the wave or the phase shift on everything so in terms of precision it’s very precise and you have more control, you can fine tune the frequency and everything – a passive crossover here is a series topology first order – with passive crossover what happens is there’s a lot of so-called interfaces between the components they can be annoying (or) they can work wrong sometimes but they can also work right and the difference between the two – in the passive (there’s) some kind of a blend of everything that sounds magical to the ears especially the first order, and especially with the series one. So yes – so we have customers who have both and normally the reports are like this: they love the passive crossover then they swap to the active and say well that’s much better, (then) after half a year they swap back to the passive and say “wow that’s much
better”! So it’s a bit different.

But precision wise the (active XO) is Nelson’s design (Nelson Pass), you know it’s minimalistic and it’s analog – live sound versus Hi-Fi but….you get so used to hearing the notches and Peaks and resonances of the passive crossover that when you go
to something active it’s going to sound unnatural at first, at least in my experience, because all those holes that you didn’t have over there have been filled in…”

Personally, I’ve always enjoyed Pure Audio Project Speakers, having heard them twice at CAF and once at a local audiophile’s home in Richmond, VA. I find their sound to be cohesive through the frequency range without any noticeable lumps or bumps in the frequency response. They’re open, quite airy, dynamic, and quite transparent. With the Horn1 driver, I hear no obvious horn colorations, and the crossover to the 15″ woofers is quite seamless. The sound, though propelled by different driver technologies, appears to be cut from the same sonic cloth, which, in my experience, is quite an achievement.

Pure Audio Project Trio15 Horn1 speaker review

I didn’t get to hear a track that gave a good indication of bass performance during this presentation, but where I’ve heard PAP speakers before, they’re well extended in the low frequency and should operate just fine without the need for a subwoofer. Of course there’ll be some who disagree.

So for a starting price of $8,000, this is actually a highly enjoyable and competent speaker and one that I’d like to own for myself, should one ever appear on the used markets at a price I can afford!

Here’s a look at the larger (2 more 15″ drivers per side) Qunintet15.

Pure Audio Project quintet 15 Horn1 speaker review