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Quad Z-1 Speakers (Pair)


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Enquiry/price check? Click here SKU: QUADZ1
Ex VAT: £995.83

Quad Z-1 is the bookshelf model in Quad's Z-series, their flagship range of ribbon speakers, available in piano black, piano rosewood or piano white finishes.

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Warranty length 2 Years
Brand Quad HiFi
Product Award HiFi Choice Recommended, HiFi Choice 5 Star

Tech Specs

- Speaker type: bookshelf
- Enclosure type: bass reflex
- Transducer complement: 2-way
- Bass driver: 150mm black glass fibre cone
- Treble driver: 90x12mm true ribbon
- AV shield: No
- Sensitivity (1W @ 1m): 86db
- Recommended amplifier power: 40-150w
- Peak power handling: 100w
- Peak SPL: 102dB
- Nominal impedance: 8Ω
- Minimum impedance: 4.6Ω
- Frequency response (+/-3dB): 56Hz - 20kHz
- Bass extension (-6dB): 48Hz
- Crossover frequency: 3.4KHz
- Cabinet Volume (in litres): 10L
- Dimensions: 383 x 219 x 283
- Weight: 6.5kg
- Finish: Piano Black / Piano Rosewood
- Box Includes: Speakers, User Manual, Certificate

Product Description

Quad Z1 speakers are the bookshelf design in Quad's Z-series range, and are the step above the S1 bookshelf speaker from Quad's S-series range. 

This is Quad's flagship ribbon range of loudspeakers and utilises a new approach to ribbon tweeter design using a unique sandwich formation. An exceptionally robust, high power speaker has been engineered, yet with the delicate sound conventional ribbon speakers are known for. 

Where It All Started

Way back in the mono days of 1949, Quad launched the Corner Ribbon as its first loudspeaker. This was, indeed, a "prestige" product, but it offered something special, a particularly clear and detailed upper mid-range to treble performance from a large and delicate ribbon driver. 

The naturalness and fidelity of sound reproduction of the original corner ribbon was championed by the hi-fi press. So, the question is, can Quad engineers replicate this performance today, or even surpass it? the answer, not surprisingly, is yes.

Then And Now

The Quad corner ribbon was a speaker incomparable to competitors at it’s time, all with thanks to the Quad ethos, which is still adhered to in all product development and to deliver; “The Closest Approach To The Original Sound”.

Being Quad's first ever commercially available loudspeaker, the Corner Ribbon was not completely perfect - it generated a relatively low power and the ribbon unit was very fragile. As we know founder Peter Walker moved on to develop the world’s first full range, push-pull Electrostatic speaker, if not the most iconic loudspeaker of our time.

So, to make a ribbon unit that handled today’s high power amplifiers and to do the original Corner Ribbon justice was no mean task. The Z Series ribbon accomplishes this by utilising a composite ribbon sandwich substrate that is far more robust than earlier designs and immerses this ribbon in an exceptionally strong magnetic field to yield ultra-high sensitivity.

Beautifully Curved Cabinets

Available in piano lacquered black, white, or rosewood, the skillfully veneered, one-piece curved structures make the focal point of any living room.

The Ribbon Tweeter

Unlike conventional dome treble units where the voice coil ‘motor’ is attached separately to the diaphragm, Z Series ribbon is both the diaphragm and the motor system. The result is a unique combination of delicacy, smoothness and hear-through performance that helps make your music sing.

While taking influence from the unparalleled success of the ESL speaker, the ribbon itself is engineered to be extremely light and thin, which delivers the startling accuracy and wide coverage Quad is famous for.

In Quad's flagship series, the larger 90 x 12mm true ribbon creates an even higher sensitivity and bandwidth which means better dynamics and an even smoother integration with the midrange frequencies.

Woven Glass Fibre Woofer

In the Z Series floorstanders, this advanced ribbon unit is married to an equally high performance midrange driver with a unique double-roll-surround especially designed to control edge breakup and give equal transparency to the all important vocal range.

Both the midrange and bass drivers feature Quad's woven glass fibre cone geometry, now matched by the double-roll-surround for the same smoothness and clarity offered by the ribbon treble unit.

Transparent Technology

The bass section, similar to the original Corner Ribbon utilises an acoustic filter bass reflex system. This section uses a double chamber filter that eliminates “chuffing” found in inferior loudspeakers with conventional ports.

This also maintains a natural and unforced reproduction right down to the lowest frequencies of a symphony orchestra, producing Quad's signature sound as found in the iconic ESLs.

Press Reviews

  • 'You'd be hard pressed to find a standmount with a more natural tonal balance than the z1... These speakers are luxuriously built with rather lovely new boat-backed enclosures further distinguished by their curved, sloping tops and a choice of high-gloss finishes.' (Hi-Fi Choice Magazine May 2017)

  • 'Z-1 swiftly displays a lovely ability to sound airy organic and unprocessed so that your focus is immediately drawn to the music rather than what the speaker makes of it. If the Quad is guilty of anything, it's of adding a gossamer layer of warmth through the midband so the presentation is even more approachable, rendering aggressive or harsh recordings more listenable.' (Hi-Fi Choice Magazine May 2017)

  • 'Bass is both fulsome and agile, which helps to make proceedings feel fleshed out with plenty of drive and truly locked down tempo during the drum solo sections... What's needed is a strong but less tightly coiled spring and that easing of tension is what the Z-1 provides, letting the music breathe and flow in a rhythmically lucid and surefooted fashion.' (Hi-Fi Choice Magazine May 2017)

  • 'The Z-1's lovely open, fluid midband and treble provides huge insight but doesn't punish less than perfect recordings... There's the foundational reassurance of that smooth, deep and nicely tuneful bass underpinning the intensity and emotional expressiveness of the performance with no hint of boominess or flab, but a great deal of grip and control. Special, too, is the ability to vanish within the bounds of an expansive soundstage and, with a suitable 'live' recording, easily convey the acoustic character and scale of a venue and locate the performers and audience inside with an uncanny sense of place and solidity.' (Hi-Fi Choice Magazine May 2017)

  • 'Tonal balance is nudged delicately onto the warm side of the neutral median but top-to-bottom integration is flawless, and both tonality and structure keep it together heroically if you lean even quite heavily on the Chord TTobY's penchant for playing loud, accurately conveying the little power amp's outrageous confidence and composure for a 50 watter... Natural and unforced is the order of the day for the Quad Z-1 - the decibel fix is up to you.' (Hi-Fi Choice Magazine May 2017)

  • 'Most standmount speakers in the Quad Z-1's price range have an agenda that seeks to capitalise on the inherent strengths conferred by a compact, rigid enclosure and simple two-way driver configuration. The z-1 ticks all the basics in some style but crucially goes further by adding true high-end midband and treble quality to the mix allied to a sumptuously deep bass performance guaranteed to quash floorstander envy: As such, its sonic talent exceeds its price point by the same wide margin as its build and finish.' (Hi-Fi Choice Magazine May 2017)

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