PSB Announces New Alpha Series Speakers - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 7 Old 01-06-2019, 07:02 PM - Thread Starter
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PSB Announces New Alpha Series Speakers

PSB has totally updated its famous Alpha speaker line that is designed to be affordable But performance-first.

Full press release:

"CES, Venetian Hotel, Las Vegas, NV January 7, 2019 -– PSB Speakers, long renowned for affordable excellence in loudspeaker design, launched an all-new range of Alpha speakers that, like their predecessors, deliver remarkable value and performance. Four models in all, the new Alpha Series is comprised of compact monitors P3 ($199 per pair) and P5 ($349 per pair), a center channel C10 ($299 each) and a tower model T20 ($599 per pair). Additionally, all four models are available now in a choice of Walnut or Black Ash finishes.

The Story Behind PSB Alpha

PSB introduced its first Alpha speaker range in 1991 with a clear purpose: create an affordable speaker that is focused on performance first. By leveraging the research conducted at the Canadian National Research Council (NRC) over many years by PSB’s founder Paul Barton, these early Alphas went on to win every competitive speaker shootout and garner many 5 star reviews. By popular request, PSB has now revisited its Alpha offerings with four models that are “clean sheet” designs, while maintaining Paul Barton’s original intent. Today’s Alphas benefit greatly from improved materials and production techniques, not to mention an additional 30 years of experience, to create a natural sounding speaker of minimalist elegance, while costing less than the original Alphas when adjusted for currency inflation.

In PSB’s new Alpha range, the P3 and P5 are classic two-way bookshelf designs that are both compact and versatile. They can be placed on a stand, a shelf, a desk or a table and are equally well-suited for home theater or stereo listening. The T20 tower adds an additional woofer in a larger Floorstanding cabinet yet occupies a small footprint. The C10 center channel speaker can be used as the center or dialog speaker in a home theater or could also be used for music.

Improved Drivers and Materials

For the new Alphas, PSB developed two new woofers; a 4 1/2” and 5 1/4” both employing dual layer voice coils with powerful magnet structures to provide low distortion and high output levels. The cones are made from a special textured polypropylene compound that prevents cone breakup and extends frequency response for a smooth integration with our tweeter.

New Alpha tweeter with Neodymium magnet and wave guide.
New Alpha woofer with textured polypropylene cone.

A new 3/4” (19mm) tweeter was designed and is used in all four models. The tweeter is ferrofluid cooled and features a Neodymium magnet for high sensitivity and power handling. A wave guide on the front of the tweeter helps match the response of the tweeter near the crossover point with the woofer for a seamless transition. Of note, the tweeter is placed below the woofer on some models which, in concert with the precisely engineered crossover network, provides a uniform sound field whether the listener is seated or standing.

Crossover - An unusually complex fourth-order Acoustic Linkwitz-Riley filter design is used to get a perfect blend between drivers and keep distortion very low even at high sound pressure levels. A crossover this sophisticated is unusual for speakers in these affordable price points.

Cabinets are often overlooked in their importance and for the new Alphas, each model has a unique combination of wall thickness and bracing to control resonances and provide a perfect platform for the drive units. Notably, the internal damping material is specialized for the purpose having been developed over many years on much more expensive PSB models and positioned precisely for optimum effectiveness. High quality precision machined cabinets in simulated Black Ash and Walnut finishes combine with magnetically attached grilles to provide a rich and timeless design. Even the grille is unique in that is does not change the sound of the speaker whether attached or removed.

“The PSB Alpha speakers were among the most popular speakers we have ever made so we have had constant requests from the market to design an updated and improved range. The original Alphas were quite good for the time, so this was a tall order” commented Paul Barton, founder and Chief Designer of PSB. “However, by leveraging new materials and design techniques as well as advanced manufacturing capability, these Alpha models are a substantial improvement over the original ones with respect to looks, performance and value.”

Key Features of the new PSB Alpha models:

• ¾” (19mm) Aluminum Dome tweeter with Neodymium magnet
• Woofers with Textured Polypropylene Cones and Rubber Surrounds
• Choice of simulated Walnut and Black Ash finishes
• 5-Way, Gold-Plated Bing Posts
• Design and final voicing engineered by Paul Barton

The new PSB Alpha Series will be on display at CES 2019 in the Lenbrook Suite 29-236 at the Venetian Hotel in Las Vegas, January 8-10, 2018. PSB will be joined there by sister brands NAD Electronics and Bluesound with Lenbrook personnel on hand to demonstrate the company’s premium products and answer any questions.
" - PSB Speakers

Mark Henninger
Editor, AVS Forum
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post #2 of 7 Old 01-24-2019, 08:46 AM
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Can't wait to see reviews on the P5 bookshelfs. They look super slick. Thinking of grabbing a pair for my living room.
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post #3 of 7 Old 06-26-2019, 02:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by concentus7 View Post
Can't wait to see reviews on the P5 bookshelfs. They look super slick. Thinking of grabbing a pair for my living room.
Soundstage just did one as is very complimentary; thinking of those for my friends as the KLH Albanys didn't cut it at all vs my LX16s.

https://www.soundstageaccess.com/ind...5-loudspeakers
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post #4 of 7 Old 06-26-2019, 02:39 PM
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On second thought after reading these comments by Steve Guttenberg, assuming my friends agree that the LX16 are several cuts above the KLH, perhaps I'll tell them to spend the extra $150 on the LX16s as they have a larger AMT than the Emotivas mentioned below and the LX16s midrange is excellent to my ear.

"The P5's treble is fine, but switching over to a set of Emotiva Airmotiv B1 bookshelf speakers the highs are airier and smoother.

The B1's soundstage is also more three-dimensional and transient details from drums as well as percussion outpace the P5.

Yet the P5 has a more fully developed midrange."


https://www.cnet.com/news/psbs-iconi...or-a-makeover/
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post #5 of 7 Old 07-11-2019, 10:30 PM
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The "more developed midrange" would make for a better surround speaker, IMO. I wonder how these would do mounted up for Atmos?

The P3s with a sub may also make a great desktop setup.

HT: Samsung PN64H5000 (recommended settings) | NAD T758 V3 | Buchardt S400 (2) | Emotiva E2 (2) | Rythmik Audio F12 (2)
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post #6 of 7 Old 07-12-2019, 05:13 AM
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Definitively curious how these sound, perhaps a Crutchfield demo at some point in the near future. Would have really liked to see a P7 with a larger woofer.
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post #7 of 7 Old 07-14-2019, 11:52 PM
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Soundstage review and measurements:

https://www.soundstageaccess.com/ind...5-loudspeakers

More refined than Paradigm’s Monitor SE Atoms. Mostly neutral, tonality similar to KEF LS50, but with better bass extension. Better than the previous PSB B1s.

There is a lot of competition in this price range, including the Ascend CBM-170 SE, which measures better, and the Chane A1.5.

However the PSB Alpha P3 is unique at $200/pair and its very small size might be tempting for a desktop or Atmos height setup.

HT: Samsung PN64H5000 (recommended settings) | NAD T758 V3 | Buchardt S400 (2) | Emotiva E2 (2) | Rythmik Audio F12 (2)

Last edited by Soulburner; 07-15-2019 at 06:25 AM.
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