We would like to share with you all an extract of last April’s Sonomag review on our popular EXO SM16-A.
SONO MAG | April issue – Article by FRANK GILLARDEAUX (extract):
The EXO SM16-A is designed to occupy a small space on stage, close to the most compact 12 ”coaxial monitors on the market. Equipped with two 8” woofers and a powerful 3” compression coil loaded by an aluminum horn achieving a constant 50° and 80° aperture, it announces 136 dB SPL at 1 m and a bandwidth that drops to 52 Hz at – 10 dB. The EXO SM16-A, active version, has a Powersoft amplifier and a DSP card on board that provides the necessary connections at the rear (power supply and Powercon link, XLR input and link), as well as volume control and the possibility of switching between four presets. The DSP also provides active protection for the speakers.
These measurements were carried out in a free field at the Ful Range preset. with an RME sound card, Systune software and a Peavey PVR-2 microphone. Placed on the ground or on a support according to the measurements.
The EXO SM16-A can only be operated through one of the four factory presets, which you cannot adjust yourself, as access to the DSP is password protected. The “Stage Monitor” preset refers to the use of the enclosure for footbath and “Near Field” type returns to the use of proximity returns for the drummers. The “Full Range” preset provides the wideband sound, and when used with a sub, you can opt for the “100Hz HPF” preset, which filters out the bass. Regarding handling, the EXO SM16-A offers simple but effective ergonomics. Although the enclosure weighs almost 30 kg, the grip is still easy thanks to a handle placed on the side opposite the base of the foot. Additional countersinks on both sides of the cabinet provide additional hanging points. Rubber pads allow speaker placement at 30° or vertically. The Clip / Temp LED lights up to indicate, depending on its color, the amplifier clips or the activation of various protections (thermal, excursion).
FREQUENCY RESPONSES TO DIFFERENT PRESETS (MICRO GROUND) – OUR BALANCE: 3/4
A nice extension in the bass, with an accent, one towards 100Hz in the front preset. The latter shows a well-mastered loudness/curve and an attenuation towards 3 kHz. The monitor preset is clearly boosted from 200 to 600 Hz to gain punch. ldem for drumfill with additionally a heavy accent, a 1 to 8K preset is best suited for vocal projection, despite an unwanted drop at 800Hz.
REAR REJECTION AND LIMITING ACTION (MICROPHONE ON STAND) – OUR BALANCE: 4/4
Rear rejection is good despite a 500Hz remanence from maximum SPL. We had to stop the test at 113 dB (A) without having entered the protections, proof that the speaker sounds loud, very loud.
SOUND DISPERSION FROM THE PAVILION 50° OPENING (MICRO ON THE GROUND) – OUR BALANCE: 4/4
The woofers are spaced in such a way that they generate a direct squeeze, just before the horn takes over, a well-controlled effect that can provide additional intelligibility in certain places. The horn performs very well, maintaining a homogeneous behavior throughout the decay.
HORN OPENING AT -6 dB OPENING AT 50 ° (MICRO GROUND) – OUR BALANCE: 4/4
An effective directivity control, albeit in plateau, with an aperture at -6 dB of 80° over the entire mid-band, and 40° over the treble which provides a sensation of openness to the ear.
SOUND DISPERSION FROM THE HORN OPENING AT 80° (MICRO ON FLOOR) – OUR BALANCE: 3/4
The homogeneity in the decay is a little less good in this sense of the horn, with curves that tend to fall too much as we gain angle. We observe a 650 Hz magnification accident, the first sign of the common phenomenon of “beaming”.
-6 dB HORN OPENING 80º OPENING (MICROFLOOR) – OUR BALANCE: 3/4
The 13 kHz retraction confirms the presence of a marked “beaming”. Apart from this drawback, the directivity of the horn is excellent and consistent.
The EXO SM16-A plays in the same league as the greats in terms of compactness, power, and electro-acoustic performance, particularly on the bass. The price-performance ratio of this self-powered version is excellent, with a facade equalization that responds well to current contour canons. Only the fact of not being able to modify the preset options seems to us to diminish the potential for professional touring agencies.
MANUFACTURING QUALITY: Good
OPERATION: Very easy.
ACTION: Very good.
QUALITY-PRICE RATIO: Excellent.
VERSATILITY / TRANSVERSALITY:
On tours, on facades, distributed, additional, etc. with or without subs.
HANDLING AND TRANSPORTATION: one operator
LEVEL OF COMPETENCE IMPLEMENTATION:
All / Versatile Technician / Qualified Technician
LEVEL OF COMPETITION OPERATION:
All / Versatile Technician / Qualified Technician
OPERATIONAL PERFORMANCE *: 4/4
* This evaluation takes into account the ease of implementation, the speed of installation and the amount of material required.
[SONO MAG is a reference French publication in the pro-sound arena. You can consult the whole article by subscribing to SONO MAG here (only available in French).]