Neat Acoustics launches floor-standing Ultimatum XLi

Uncategorised By May 19, 2011

In a surprise move Neat Acoustics launches a floor standing loudspeaker based on the already revered Ultimatum XLS model. The XLi will be available in July.

The Ultimatum XLi is a new floor standing loudspeaker of compact proportions, It is engineered to deliver greater performance than the Ultimatum XLS by using a floor standing cabinet to deliver separate volumes for mass loading and crossover isolation. This follows a significant number of requests from retailers and distributors around the world who found that the performance of the XLS was ideally suited to potential owners needs but a ‘floorstander’ would have been more domestically acceptable.

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The mid/bass drivers in the XLi are mounted isobarically which when aligned correctly, as in the XLi, gives deep clean bass delivery. Combining this authority with the superb sounding Sonomex domed XL high-frequency unit is the art of the Ultimatums. A separate sub-volume contains two EMIT type supertweeter drive units. Those used in the Ultimatum series extend to 40kHz fire upwards and operate quietly. Their output, though inaudible to the human ear, affects the content within the audible frequency range and lends an open, airy quality to the presentation.

The lower part of the XLi cabinet is designed to allow it to be mass loaded for extra stability and to ensure the centre of gravity is ideally placed.

The XLi cabinet is constructed from slow-growing birch ply chosen as it is extremely consistent and has the ideal resonance behaviour. The front baffle is from precision routed controlled-density fibreboard coupled to the front of the cabinet by means of a polyethylene membrane. This makes an extremely inert platform for the mid/bass and high frequency drivers. The lower cabinet areas are also extensively braced to ensure that they are acoustically quiet.

The main Mid/Bass driver is a special version of the Neat 168mm driver with an aluminium phase plug to aid dispersion and reduce dynamic compression.

A sealed sub-volume contains the main HF drive unit a modified SEAS XL SONOMEX domed XL unit with additional damping and support.

The crossover is a minimalist four-element type (plus damping & attenuating resistors) employing precise-tolerance, low-loss air-cored inductors and high tolerance polypropylene film & foil capacitors. The speaker exploits predominantly first-order crossover slopes and mechanical roll-offs for a natural, uninhibited performance. The crossover enjoys the isolation of a separate and isolated cabinet section below the bass driver cabinet. The benefit this isolation brings is substantial.


HF Unit                                                   26mm SONOMEX Domed XL

Super HF Units                                     2* EMIT 25mm planar/ribbon

Bass / Midrange Driver                      2* 168mm NEAT Bass/Mid Unit with Aluminium Phase Plug

Dimensions (hwd):                             100 x 22 x 37cm.

Enclosure type:                                     Multi-chamber, multi-driver array, incorporating isobaric internal cavity, plus upward firing super-tweeters.

Sensitivity:                                             87dB/1 watt.

Recommended amplifier power:      25 – 200 watts.

Impedance:                                            6 ohms average. Minimum 4 ohms.

Weight:                                                   33kg each.