Excellent sound is not a question of size, but certainly one of stature. And the STEP loudspeakers have exhibited stature since AUDIO PHYSIC was founded. Over the course of three decades, we have tirelessly continued to further develop the model. The strong reception of these loudspeakers among music aficionados, not to mention numerous national and international awards, underscore the high class of these units. Now with STEP plus, the most mature STEP model of all time is entering the stage, and the STEP plus gives the term compact loudspeaker a whole new dimension.
||320 mm / 12.6"
||175 mm / 6.9"
||250 mm / 9.8"
Width x Depth
|175x300 mm / 6.9x11.8"
|Recommended amplifier power
||50 Hz - 40 kHz
|More technical details
Features and Specs
Our listening tip
Donna Lewis | Now in a Minute | WARNER-MUSIC
In 1996, Donna Lewis belted out “I love You Always Forever”, catapulting into the charts and reaching the ears of fans. Yet the artist unjustly bears the stigma of a one-hit wonder. The fact that this singer from Wales offers more than just light entertainment is evidenced by her album “Now in a Minute”. Chock-full of soulful ballads and her engaging, multi-faceted singing style, the disc can be played from start to finish. For audiophile criticasters, “Silent World” offers a bare-knuckled benchmark to ferret out any cabinet resonance. After exactly 28 seconds, Lewis comes in on cue, singing “and keep You”. Over many loudspeakers, the word “and” exactly at this point sounds more like “hng”, practically as if the Weather Girls do their best, but they are trying to sing while eating a club sandwich, instead of the tall and slender Lewis stature. The STEP plus loudspeakers do without the cotton balls and softeners when the acoustic space is opened up by the voice of the artist. They articulate perfectly, without any cabinet sounds.
Jonny Lang | Long Time Coming | UNIVERSAL
Who says the Blues belong to a bygone age? What the young talent, Jonny Lang, delivers in this album, deserves respect. He shows great feeling in “Dying to Live”, only to crank up the groove in “If We Try”; Lang’s gentle, husky voice lends each song its own note, instilling strength and a special sustained quality. This is an album you’ll be playing more than once.
In terms of sound technology on a high level, especially the “dry” pieces demand precision of a loudspeaker. Lang’s voice, however, is the actual benchmark, it tends to sound bright, slightly throaty. Loudspeakers that render his singing compressed or even polished and sparkling abandon the path of virtue.
- new HHCT III tweeter
- modified cross over
- modified inner cabinet with
open cell ceramic foam bracing elements
Features and Specs
Our listening tip
Not all rooms offer sufficient space for positioning standing loudspeakers. Close to the wall or even pushed off into the corner, most of the time they play far below their sound capabilities. On the other hand, large loudspeakers in small rooms are not always to be recommended, because at low frequencies more than compact loudspeakers they tend to produce room modes and thus highly disturbing resonance which can be audible as droning effects. What's more, there are many music lovers who have a purist approach, and they appreciate compact loudspeakers not only because they take up a smaller footprint.
In terms of styling, the STEP plus is true to the tradition of its predecessors, but we re-engineered it from the inside out with the same passion that we dedicate to the AUDIO PHYSIC top models. The STEP plus benefit from technological insights that we gathered during the development of the top model, CARDEAS 30 LJE. Thus, they also feature the exclusive HHC-III tweeters, the fidelity of which extend far beyond the audible range. Best prerequisites for excellent pulse fidelity.
The suspension system and the chassis basket are mechanically decoupled from one another in a radical design involving the hyper-holographic cone chassis. Resonance detrimental to sound due to micro-vibrations is thus combated where it originates and effectively reduced. The forward-looking HHC-M chassis also makes a difference on the low medium tones. The result is a dramatic gain in precision and attention to detail. The most intricate flutters in a vibrato or the gentle shimmer of a fading harp string are real challenges for any loudspeaker. The STEP plus peel away the most intricate details from the musical thicket like child’s play, without sounding technically artificial. They reproduce complex music material in a calm, collected and uncompromising manner acoustic magnifying glasses in a true sense.
The special cabinet shape lends the STEP plus not only a modern, timeless appearance, it also reduces standing waves in the interior of the loudspeakers. Standing waves jeopardise crisp midrange reproduction in particular. Moreover, ceramic foam reduces resonance in the interior of the STEP plus. The extremely stiff and open-pore material figuratively takes on the function of a labyrinth. The acoustic noise inevitably emitted from the chassis into the cabinet interior essentially gets lost in the pores, thereby undergoing a massive reduction in power, and can no longer affect the sound. Traditional insulation materials do not even come close to achieving this effect.
The slight rear tilt of the cabinet body balances out phase differences between the mid and high range. Low mid-range drivers and tweeters are placed flush with the front panel. Deformation effects that can lead to a nervous sound don’t have a chance.
An additional essential contribution to natural sound is provided by the re-engineered crossover with its painstakingly selected components. The interior wiring, as well as the high-quality WBT control terminal, mechanically decoupled from the cabinet, are also part of the tonal coordination. The sum of all these details leads to a stunning attention to detail and homogeneity that will thrill the discerning audiophile. Not least thanks to their tonal balance and impressive dynamic capabilities, the STEP plus also make a fine seamless addition as rear speakers in an AUDIO PHYSIC surround system.
On the elegant loudspeaker feet from our line of accessories, the STEP plus will have ideal operating conditions. The feet guarantee optimal height and a sturdy stance.
Home Theater HiFi :: 2018
English Review PDF 2.4 MB