Despite (or because) it has dared to be different, new kid on the block MonoPulse, has succeeded both in terms of presentation and engineering.
The application of phased array radar principles to loudspeaker design might seem unusual, but it has been the core foundation of the company's approach. No doubt, due to the fact that this was the field in which principal Allan Hendry spent much of his working life.
Applying this to loudspeaker design imposes significant constraints on driver disposition, which in turn is probably responsible for the decision to go for a fabric-covered presentation with metal embellishments, which allows for a wide choice of ten different colours.
MonoPulses come in two distinct ranges, the much admired larger A-series and the more compact S-series as well as this beefier 62S at £1,195.
One could call it a two-and-a-half-way design, but in truth it's essentially a two-way, as the 'half' here is just a piezo-electric supertweeter that adds a little extra air at the extreme top end. This is mounted within a metal bracket on the top surface, which also provides a useful hand-hold.
Despite a width of only 170mm, MonoPulse has managed to squeeze a 160mm bass/mid driver with large diameter voice coil into the floorstanding enclosure. Two coach-bolt heads decorate an otherwise featureless front, the bolts themselves acting as braces between front and back close to the drivers.
In the interests of time alignment, the main driver is mounted above the tweeter and is reflex-loaded by a downward-firing port in the base. Metal feet keep the port clear of the floor, with or without the use of the thumbwheel-tightened spikes, but there's no extra plinth, so the stability footprint is modest. Electrical connection is made via twin terminal pairs, set rather high off the ground. The main tweeter has a relatively large 31mm soft dome diaphragm, which is presumably why a supertweeter is used.
Room measurements indicate - and listening tests confirm - that the 62S is best kept well clear of walls. The good news is that it delivers a fine performance through the bass and broad midrange. It's not the most dynamic 'grab you' sound around, but it is relatively smooth and lucid, slightly lean and forward, but with satisfying weight and drive.
However, while respectable enough, the sound it delivers somehow lacks the rather special character we've encountered with larger MonoPulse models. The stereo imaging is certainly pretty good, but the lack of presence and lower treble output is all too clearly audible and this robs the sound of the sharp, tight precision that has been such a hallmark of the larger MonoPulse designs.
The impressive 'spotlighting' effect that had made the 42A so involving was not present with this model and a degree of 'cupped hands' coloration was also obvious. Furthermore, that lack of presence energy leaves the treble sounding rather detached and isolated. It's not particularly smooth either, but its relative level seems very well judged.
The bonus of presence restraint is that it does mean the speaker avoids sounding aggressive and likes to be played with a bit of volume.