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Power Sound Audio (PSA) is no longer the new kid on the block. Launched two years ago behind the thrust of three subwoofer designs (XS15, XV15, and XV30), the company has thrived using an internet direct sales model. Founders Tom Vodhanel and Jim Farina have yet to throttle back, all the while upholding their desire to keep prices reasonable and customer service exceptional; simply surf the threads of audio forums and you’ll find nothing but praise for the PSA buying experience. Of course, this goes without mentioning that PSA subwoofers deliver the boom. If you caught our review of PSA’s entry-level XS15se sub, then you’re well aware that Power Sound Audio is serious about build quality and performance.


PSA's new MT-110 loudspeaker.



In recent weeks, Power Sound Audio has announced several changes to their catalog of products. The first is a newly minted relationship with miniDSP, allowing PSA to sell miniDSP’s 10x10 HD and 2x4 digital signal processors and UMIK-1 omni-directional microphone direct to customers. The second involves an entirely new product category: loudspeakers. Sometime during the month of October, Power Sound Audio is expecting to begin shipments of its MT-110, MT-110c (the “c” denotes a horizontally oriented cabinet), MTM-210, and MTM-210c loudspeakers. The MT-110 model is the smaller of the two, weighing 35lbs and measuring 17.5-inches x 11 x14. It features a two-way design with a 1-inch titanium compression driver, a cast aluminum exponential horn, and a 10-inch woofer. The MTM-210 is larger (55lbs, 28-inches x11x16), filling-out its larger size with dual 10-inch drivers.

We recently caught-up with Tom Vodhanel and asked him a few questions about Power Sound Audio’s new offerings. He was generous enough to share his thoughts along with a few never-seen-before images of PSA’s new speakers.



HTS: It’s been a little over a year since we last talked and lots of big changes have happened at PSA. We’ve seen new finishes for sub cabinets, upgraded drivers, and several new subwoofer designs. Is PSA growing faster than you expected?

TV: Not really. Jim and I have been through this before. Our "build a better mousetrap” and “you don't need to advertise" philosophies seem to resonant with our target customer base. We knew we were entering a competitive marketplace, but at the same time we were confident that we could bring a unique experience and perspective to the table. We’ve never worried about a three month goal or even a one year goal. We’re more concerned about where we want to Power Sound Audio to be in five years.



HTS: You’ve had several big announcements in recent weeks beginning with a new relationship with MiniDSP. What forged that relationship and how will it benefit PSA’s customers?

TV: Initially, our customers raised our interest in miniDSP. They’ve expressed universal praise for miniDSP products when combined with one or more of our subwoofers. It didn't take us long to recognize this trend. So, we ordered several miniDSP products for ourselves. Once we had the products in hand we realized that offering them in a "one stop shop" type of scenario would be convenient for our customers.



HTS: Of course the PSA’s latest news, the announcement of two new loudspeaker models (the MT-110 and MT-220), is big. Tell us why PSA has decided to make an entry into the loudspeaker segment?

TV: It has always been our intention to offer both subwoofers and speakers. The speaker development took longer than expected, but we feel most will say it was worth the wait.


PSA's dual 10-inch driver MTM-210 loudspeaker.


HTS: Based on specs, it looks like the MTM-220’s would make an ideal front sound stage in a home theater application, but the MT-110’s might be a tad large to wall mount as rear channels. How do you envision the MT/MTM series being deployed in home settings?

TV: I think we'll see an equal number of systems using the MT-110s and MTM-210s for the front stage, but the majority of surround applications will probably use the smaller MT-110 model. The overall sound and voicing of the two speakers is practically identical, so anyone can mix-and-match them to their individual requirements. The only significant difference is the larger MTM-210 will be able to play a bit louder. It has double the woofer cone area along with approximately 3dB more efficiency.

HTS: Neither speaker appears to be a true floor stander. Does PSA have plans to sell custom designed speaker stands?

TV: Initially, no, we will not have custom speaker stands. We intend to recommend several from reputable sources like Parts Express, with pricing and link information on our website.


HTS: Of course, everyone is interested in learning about the kind of cabinet materials and finishes PSA will offer. Can you share some of those details with us?

TV: The same vendor that manufactures our Satin Black subwoofer cabinets is making the cabinets. So the speakers’ style and finish will match-up with our current subwoofer models. Eventually we may offer our speaker designs in wood veneer as well.


HTS: One spec absent in last week’s introduction pertains to the backside of the speakers. What kind of binding posts will be included with the MT/MTM series?

TV: The binding posts are the basic gold knurled type.


A side-by-side look at the MTM-210 and MT-110.


HTS: Can you share any details on where PSA will source the drivers?

TV: They’re sourced from Eminence in Kentucky. This is the same OEM that we use for our 15-inch SE subwoofer driver. The Horn is sourced from B&C and is made in Italy.


HTS: You and Jim are well known for subwoofer design...did you design the MT-110 and MTM-220's in-house, or did you consult with an outside designer?

TV: Everything was designed in-house. Jim and I have been designing full range gear for almost 15 years now...our designs include the older SBS and MBS designs. We’ve done more "DIY" designs in the past 5-10 years than I can remember…everything from 6-foot tall full range ribbons to tiny 3-inch full range sat systems. So, while our adventures in speaker design are not as widely known, we’ve probably spent almost as much time on speakers as we have on subwoofers.


HTS: PSA has released pricing details for the speakers on its website, will there be any kind of discount for customers that pre-order?

TV: Yes, I believe there are a total of 18 different package prices we’ve set in our ordering system. These range from basic 2.0 systems to a variety of 5.0 and 7.0 configurations. And, of course, if one of these packages doesn’t fit a potential customer’s needs, we will certainly work with them on discounting custom packages as well.

As an example, here’s the pricing for two common package deals: A 5.0 system consisting of five MT-110 speakers – at list price – would cost $3000 if purchased in singles. Our package price is $2499. A 7.0 system consisting of three MTM-210 speakers and four MT- 110 speakers lists for $5100 as single units, but our package price is $4049. So, the 5.0 and 7.0 package discounts will range from a 17-percent to over a 20-percent savings off list. When you factor in free shipping [both ways] into the equation, we believe the new speakers are a very good value.


HTS: Tom, thanks for spending some time with us and sharing images of the speakers. We wish PSA the best of luck with the speaker launch!

MT-110 & MT-110c
("c" denotes horizontally oriented cabinet)
  • 2 way, audiophile loudspeaker
  • 1" titanium compression driver
  • Cast aluminum exponential horn
  • 10" high efficiency woofer
  • Audiophile grade crossover completely designed in house
  • Frequency Response = 70Hz - 20kHz
  • Sensitivity = 95dB 1W/1M
  • Size HxWxD = 17.5" x 11" x 14" (includes grill)
  • Weight = 35lbs
  • MSRP = $599
MTM-210 & MTM-210c
  • 2 way, audiophile loudspeaker
  • 1" titanium compression driver
  • Cast aluminum exponential horn
  • Dual 10" high efficiency woofers
  • Audiophile grade crossover completely designed in house
  • Frequency Response = 70Hz - 20kHz
  • Sensitivity = 98dB 1W/1M
  • Size HxWxD = 28" x 11" x 16" (includes grill)
  • Weight = 55lbs
  • MSRP = $899
For more information about Power Sound Audio’s products, visit their website at powersoundaudio.com.

Image Credits: Power Sound Audio
 

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Very nice looking speakers. I can't wait to hear how the compare to the pro and sho models that can produced a few years ago. I have the pro 10's now and I do like the sound but I would like a little more kick
 

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I've been wondering when we would see an announcement like this from PSA. Based on the performance of their subs, these speakers will no doubt be excellent. Interesting to see lots of high-efficiency designs coming to home theater.
You're right, this only seemed like a matter of time. I'd assume these will mirror the build quality of PSA subs...I'd imagine their cabinets are going to sound like rocks when knocked with knuckles.
 

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No worries Jeff if you kidnap me, all I ask is you let me listen to your system and have some beer on tap. :)
Shaun, you have an open invitation, my home is your home my friend. You'll have to have that beer with the missus though as I don't drink, she will be more than happy to oblige you with that and I will supply the entertainment, well maybe after you two have enough you'll be the entertainment:D Take care and I'll see you at the other place.
Cheers Jeff
 
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