Danish Scansonic’s MB series of loudspeakers has been upgraded by the company’s new chief designer – who also happens to be chief designer of sister brands Raidho and Gamut. The resulting MB-B series is an ‘all-embracing upgrade’ and a Hi-Fi News Outstanding Product.
The new version of the MB series is the work of chief designer Benno Baun Meldgaard, who previously held the same role at Gamut (and still does): when Gamut became part of the Raidho group of companies, Meldgaard was appointed chief designer for all three brands: Raidho, Gamut and Scansonic. So the added ‘B’ in the new MB-B series stands, somewhat playfully, for ‘Benno’.
While the new design may look the same as the original one, the publicity for Scansonic’s MB series refers to an ‘all-embracing upgrade’, and “the measured performance suggests we are looking at two completely different models,” note reviewers Andrew Everard and Paul Miller. Meldgaard has indeed made significant changes to the six-strong MB series, from the standmount MB1-B to the range-topping MB6-B.
The series features the same simplified version of the Raidho ribbon planar tweeter as before without revision. But the midrange and bass drivers have been upgraded. The MB5B’s four 115mm units, between which mid and bass duties are split, have been treated to a new low-loss spider in their suspension which, in combination with the units’ powerful magnets, deliver an improvement in both dynamic handling and bass response. The redesigned crossover better integrates the drivers, which are also time-aligned by a gently angled baffle. The cabinets, which are now ported, are tuned for optimal impulse response; they are shaped to avoid internal reflections and standing waves, braced to reduce vibrations, and have been modified to optimize airflow, allowing a reduction in the amount of internal damping.
“Frankly, this system can reproduce a visceral weight, power and sheer musical presence that eludes many far bigger floorstanders…. the MB5-B stands ready to bring more energy, vigour and chest-pounding vitality to the music at hand.”
“The ribbon-esque treble unit, unchanged here, sounds deliciously open and extended without a hint of brightness. There is still plenty of ‘air’ but absolutely no coarseness or brittleness, qualities that feed all the way down through mid and bass to ensure the MB5B creates large and unforced soundscapes.”
“You’ll be hooked and listening for hours.”
Read the full review in the June 2020 issue of Hi-Fi Plus