Catalog Aria 900
Aria 900
Aria 900
MADE IN FRANCE
Affordable High-End
Eighteen years after the launch of
the "W" sandwich cone, Focal is
unveiling its new major innovation:
speaker drivers with the same
sandwich structure, but composed
of a natural flax-fibre cone. This
innovation is the result of more
than 5 years of research and a
unique drive to work on the actual
source of the emission of sound.
This constant quest for acoustic
excellence gave birth to Aria 900, a
range which prefigures the radical
technological changes and which
launches a design combining
elegant classicism and modernity.
Aria 900 marks a new milestone for
Focal and a new chapter in highfidelity technology. Designed and
made in France, the range features
brand-new speaker drivers with Flax
sandwich cones, new TNF Aluminium/Magnesium inverted dome
tweeters with Poron suspension,
injected zamak baskets, carefully
designed cabinets and crossovers: nothing has been spared
when it comes to maximising
listening pleasure for well-informed
music lovers.
The style of Aria 900 marks a step
forward for the current Classic
Collection: the strong identity of
the Chorus 800 V range has been
replaced with a purer, simpler and
more timeless style combining
beautiful mineral and organic
materials. The loudspeaker cabinets
of Aria 900 range are available
in Walnut and Black High Gloss
finishes. All cabinets feature a glass
surface and a leather-finished front
panel. This design exudes style
and quality, helping it to blend in
perfectly with traditional or more
contemporary interiors.
The vast range of Aria 900 products
is ideal for stereo and Home Cinema
audio systems. The two 8" woofers
of the 948 model mark a return to
true expressive and dynamic highfidelity loudspeakers.
> F or 35 years Focal has been developing and manufacturing loudspeakers for the home, speaker drivers for the car, monitor speakers for recording studios and more recently a sound bar
Market leader in High-fidelity, Focal’s worldwide reputation is well known: our brand is recognised everywhere for its sound quality and its numerous technological innovations.
Returning music
to its rightful place
In the course of the last decade the
ways in which we reproduce music
have seen enormous changes.
Plummeting CD sales and the
growth in downloads have turned
our relationship with music on
its head. It comes as no surprise
that access to music, which has
never been easier, and the cost of
that access, verging on the free of
charge, have led to a situation of
abundance. But, when all is said
and done, where is the pleasure?
What we need today is a new
set of benchmarks, fully in tune
with all new media, to guide us
towards the music we love. Many
specialised sites have appeared,
with the editorial content to help
us make our musical choice.
This is the "upstream" phase of
musical discovery: the pleasure
of uncovering new talents, new
works, and so on. Here at Focal,
our work focuses more on the
"downstream". Our role is to enable
you to reproduce music at home
with the best possible quality, while
never neglecting the aesthetic
dimension that is the hallmark of
every top quality product. And the
good news is that sound quality is no
longer limited by the quality of the
source media. Digital has entered
another phase: the high cost of data
storage that meant files had to be
compressed ten years ago is no
more and nowadays it is perfectly
possible to access high definition
music of at least CD quality.
The unfortunate thing is that the
majority of audio products developed
back then for compressed music albeit with advanced functionality were made with severe economies
placed on their acoustics, in the
quest for "miniaturisation" and
affordability. The result being that
they are simply not good enough for
quality reproduction of CD format
or high definition files. It is time to
return music to its rightful place
and it is no coincidence that we
are now witnessing a renaissance
in "classic" high-fidelity. No-one
would deny that hi-fi separates
systems are still out there for savvy,
demanding music-lovers. Luxury
does exist in the audio segment
and we are well established within
it with our Utopia III range. But one
of Focal’s defining characteristics
has always been our desire to be
ahead of the curve, anticipating the
needs of audiophiles everywhere.
Listening to a Utopia III system is
a rare moment, a very particular
sensory experience which opens
up hitherto unheard musical
landscapes. And the challenge for
us is how to bring such emotion,
such feeling, to a greater number of
people. Ever since its creation this
has been Focal’s quest, through its
respect for the acoustic art, through
its constant innovation in the fields
of materials and manufacturing
processes, and last but far from
least, through keeping every step of
production in house.
And so, Aria is an important
milestone in the pursuit of
"Affordable High-End".
> Jazz à Vienne Year 2013.
> Aria 906 in Walnut finish with Naim DAC and amplifier.
Design
Perceptions of the speaker enclosure
have evolved over recent decades.
From the "pseudo-musical-instrument" with its ostentatious wooden
cabinet of the 70’s and 80’s,
through the techno-object of the
90’s, the general tendency towards
miniaturisation of the 2000’s has
turned the audio loudspeaker into
an intrusive item.
As in so many other areas, design
is used to make these acoustic
objects highly desirable. Our living
spaces are awash with "high-tech"
products, which often means miniaturizing them.
But the laws of acoustics are not
so easily bent and audiophiles have
just had to accept that hi-fi speakers have to be a certain size. And
so they integrate them into their
spaces as part of their furnishings,
as a statement of their personality,
of their passion...
Turning to current trends in home
furnishing, it is striking that the
influence of the great designers
of bygone years has never been
stronger. Charles and Ray Eames,
Mies Van der Rohe, Arne Jacobsen...
they are all achieving mass appeal
more than fifty years on, evidence
of a search for meaning, for identity
or for some other solid benchmark
through consumption in this period
of globalisation.
In this context, Aria has been
conceived as an elegant piece of
home furnishing; simple, with great
stature, quality materials and soft
shapes which capture the light and
resist the passage of time.
And to do away with unnecessary
details, it has no visible fixings solid
brushed metal rings surrounding
the bass and midrange cones; the
tweeter has a small matt black
urethane wave guide for improved
sound diffusion, the fabric grille
attaches magnetically.
Lastly, the remarkable "Flax
Sandwich" cones made of natural
flax fibre with their ultra-organic
identity are the finishing touch
that give Aria its unique style.
Just as with Utopia III, our work on
Aria with Pineau & Le Porcher was
based on simplifying, eliminating
the superfluous, carefully choosing
the most beautiful materials
possible in support of the desired
performance.
The glass on its upper face for
strength, the leather finish to its
front face for its absorbent and
acoustic
diffraction
qualities,
lightweight aluminium for its plinth.
> Aria 948 in Walnut finish.
> Aria 926 in Black High Gloss finish and Aria 905 in Black High Gloss finish on the S 900 stand.
The materials revolution,
or the rediscovery of flax
The cone of a loudspeaker is
a key mechanical component.
Its characteristics have a direct
impact on the sound quality. Its role
could not be simpler: it makes the
air molecules vibrate in response
to the electrical signal from the
amplifier.
An ideal cone should be light, for
rapid acceleration, stiff so as not
to distort the sound, particularly
in the bass, and finally, damped that is to say neutral - so as not
to add sound colouration from its
component materials.
Focal’s reputation derives from its
unique mastery of the loudspeaker,
the fruit of multiple innovations:
notable among them, the sandwich
structure cone, introduced in the
mid-80's. Numerous developments
over time led to the "W" sandwich
cone which, more than 18 years on,
is still an unequalled benchmark.
Developed for Utopia, this
patented technology meant that
from then on Focal was able to
sculpt the response curve right
back to the original source, unlike
competitors who always had to
employ electrical corrections
which did nothing to eliminate the
intrinsic weaknesses of the cone.
Unfortunately, as the only way to
build these "W" sandwich cones
is by hand, their cost means they
cannot be used in more affordable
products. In addition, the singlematerial solution is just not
enough to meet all requirements.
This is why Focal has been
continually exploring innovations
in materials science. Over recent
years, ecological conscience playing
no little part, hybrid materials have
appeared blending composites
chemistry with natural fibres, flax
being foremost among them.
French flax fibre is one of the best
in the world, thanks to the very
particular climatic conditions found
in Flanders, Picardy and Normandy.
Using this, and the multiple benefits
of flax, as a starting point, we
have developed a new technology,
the "Flax Cone". Flax fibre, a product
known from antiquity, has superlative
mechanical characteristics: low
elasticity at 1.5%, which approaches
that of carbon fibre, with rigidity
close to Kevlar, at 60 GPa.
Sandwiched between two sheets
of glass fibre, flax’s inelasticity
works wonders, endowing the
cone with remarkable stiffness.
Composed of 80% cellulose, flax
fibre is hollow, making it ideal for
combining neutrality and lightness.
By adjusting the flax braid’s
density it is also possible to
maximise stiffness, in a woofer
for example, or lightness and
damping in a midrange speaker.
More details on our website
www.focal.com
Fiber glass 0,04mm
Flax 0,4mm
Fiber glass 0,04mm
> F lax sandwich
Details for midrange driver
> Aria 926 in Black High Gloss finish.
The new
TNF Tweeter
Focal brand’s signature product,
the inverted dome tweeter has been
continually developed ever since it
was created. It bears repeating that
its main advantage, apart from its
very low directivity, lies in its use
of a coil of small diameter (hence
very light and better accelerating)
directly fixed to the rigid dome.
Just as with the cones of its bass
and midrange speaker drivers, what
makes Focal unique is working directly
on the sound output and, therefore,
on the mechanical characteristics
of materials. When we introduced
the pure Beryllium inverted dome
tweeter ten or so years ago, we clearly
demonstrated the decisive advantage
of this exclusive technology.
For Aria, we have brought two
major evolutions to our aluminium/
magnesium tweeter.
The suspension between the dome
and its bracket uses Poron, a
material with shape memory. This
suspension method is directly
derived from the famous Utopia
Beryllium tweeter, making it
possible to reduce distortion by a
factor of two in the 2-4 kHz range,
where the human ear has very
great sensitivity.
The inverted dome’s spatial
characteristics and very low
directivity already make it greatly
superior to the conventional
domes used by our competitors
and to further improve this a wave
guide has been developed. In a
horizontal plane, its frequency
response has a variance of +/- 0.5 dB.
This performance guarantees an
incredibly stable sound stage which
makes the listening position much
less critical.
It is due to more than twenty years’
dogged work on our manufacturing
processes that it is possible to
achieve such precision in a component as delicate as a tweeter.
Control over production is the one
and only solution for continued
innovation when it comes to
loudspeakers...
% of distortion 10
1
Frequency
0.1
2000
EPDM suspension
Poron suspension
20000
> Distortion levels directly affect sound quality. The use of Poron has reduced the distortion by half
in the tweeter’s. Bandwidth between 2–4 kHz: an area where the sensibility of the ear is very high.
> Aria 906 in Black High Gloss finish.
> Cross-section of the TNF tweeter. Poron’s physical properties provide improved
control over the mobile assembly in the magnetic parts.
Aria 948
Starting point for the Aria concept,
the Aria 948 was designed to make
the very most of our brand new
"Flax" technology. In fact, it serves
to some extent as a demonstration…
Starting by going back to
fundamentals, with its two largediameter 8" (21cm) bass cones even
if it meant defying market trends.
This is the only solution to having
performance and dynamics whilst
retaining good bass extension.
for finalising tonal balance was to
move towards that of the Scala V2
Utopia, our range’s benchmark, if
indeed it can be said that we have
one! Of course, its definition is not
as marked as that of the Scala V2
with its "W" sandwich membranes
and its beryllium tweeter, but its
overall sound signature comes
astonishingly close, with the ease
provided by its high dynamics, airy
spatial characteristic and jubilant
sense of rhythm.
Profiting from more than twenty
years’ experience in membranes,
the woofers’ "Flax" sandwiches use
a 250g/m2 flax braid to maximise
stiffness, while the midrange units
use 150g/m2 density for optimal
lightness and damping.
The contribution made by "Flax"
sandwich membranes is should be
compared with products in a similar
price range, formerly fitted with
Polyglass cones. There is a very real
gain here in terms of definition and
presence in the midrange.
The Aria 948 is, therefore, a "generous"
enclosure, with substantial dimensions. With its high 92.5dB/W/m
sensitivity it is easy to drive, even
with modestly powered amplifiers.
Keeping its componentry in mind,
the objective given to the teams
Aria 948 was clearly the prototype
for definitive validation of "Flax"
sandwich cones, like the Grande
Utopia in 1995, developed as a
concept product used to validate
"W" sandwich cones. The results
more than met our expectations.
The "Flax" membrane is offering
Focal very encouraging prospects,
finding a place for itself among
the true acoustic values that Focal
holds so dear.
There is no measurement for the
ensemble of criteria used when
one listens to a piece of music - the
sensory dimension remains the
final arbiter.
> Aria 948 in Black High Gloss finish.
> Aria 948 in Walnut finish.
Home Cinema
The Aria range is vast, enabling a huge
array of Home Cinema configurations
to match, among others, the size of
the listening room.
The CC 900 centre speaker is the
keystone of the system. It needs
to bring precision and consistency
between the visual image and the
sound stage. The "Flax" sandwich
membrane’s contribution to definition
is marvellously apparent, with voices
that have both intelligibility and depth.
The TNF tweeter waveguide and
associated new Poron suspension
> Aria 906 in Walnut finish on the S 900 stand.
also make their contribution to
increased clarity of reproduction,
most noticeably in the 2-3 kHz
frequency range that is so critical
for voices.
to integrate into your interior. There
are two main criteria for choosing
the main speakers: the first is the size
of the room, and the second is the
dynamic capacity required.
Focal’s teams worked particularly
hard on avoiding directivity problems
when listeners moved to one side from
the centre line. This led to the benefit
of great stability, for a truly immersive
3D experience with the SR 900s
used as bipolar surround speakers.
Thanks to the Polyfix wall-mounting
system, SR 900 loudspeaker is easy
And when it comes to dynamic
capacity, the Aria 936 floor standing
loudspeakers provide remarkable
results, guaranteeing you a truly
outstanding Home Cinema 5.1
system when used with the CC 900
and a pair of SR 900.
> Aria 936 and CC900 in Walnut finish.
Subwoofers,
a family of speakers in their own right!
In our catalogue, the subwoofer is free to wander. Instead of offering one model for each line of products, Focal has
reversed the trend in order to offer consumers a more judicious choice, and has started a line of subwoofers destined for
specific uses. This means increasing the number of possible combinations. From now on, according to the size of your
system, you will be able to choose from models of subwoofers which perfectly stand up to expectations in
terms of performance and use.
Despite its nonconformist appearance, the
Sub Air is a true high-performance subwoofer
equipped with a 8" (21cm) bass-reflex speaker
driver and a 150W BASH® amplifier. Taking
up little space, it blends in perfectly with its
surroundings, whether it’s on the floor or
mounted to the wall thanks to the original
mounting kit. Thanks to the high-quality wireless
radio transmission (16 bits/44.1 kHz), the
Sub Air is easy and quick to install.
> Aria 926 and Aria CC900 in Black High Gloss finish.
The Sub 300P is a subwoofer destined for lovers
of strong sensations. It is equipped with a 10"
(27cm) woofer with polyglass cone powered
by a powerful 300W RMS BASH® amplifier. Its
textured Black finish will help it blend into your
interior. The Sub 300 P is an essential feature
to increase the response of the bass in various
multichannel systems.
> 24" (60cm) optional Aria S900 stand.
Despite its small size, the Aria 905
bookshelf loudspeaker is capable
of reproducing sound worthy of a
much bigger loudspeaker whilst
providing very natural sound without
any artificiality. The loudspeaker has
detailed midrange as well as articulated and controlled bass thanks
to the oversized magnet of the
midrange/bass speaker driver. It’s
a true ultra-compact hi-fi loudspeaker. It is recommended for rooms
measuring from 107ft2 (10m2) and
for a listening distance of 2m.
Aria 906 bookshelf loudspeaker
is faithful to the DNA of the
Aria range: refined high-end
acoustics combined with excellent
perceived value thanks to the use
of noble materials. This 2-way
loudspeaker allows users to enjoy
all the qualities of the Flax cone:
neutrality, presence and finesse.
Aria 906 is recommended for
rooms measuring from 160ft2
(15m2) and from a listening
distance of 8ft (2.5m).
Aria 926 embodies the home
3-way floor standing loudspeaker.
This musical and expressive
loudspeaker is easy to install.
All kinds of music lovers will be
thrilled with its acoustic qualities.
Aria 926 is by definition an
affordable audiophile loudspeaker.
It is ideal for rooms measuring
from 215ft2 (20m2) and from a
recommended listening distance
of 10ft (3m).
Aria 936 is a 3-way loudspeaker
featuring an elegant design and
a small footprint. Very linear and
with impressive dynamics, thanks
to its 3 woofers, it is naturally
intended for listening in stereo
for monitoring-type activities.
This loudspeaker is also ideal for
setting up a spectacular Home
Cinema system. Appropriate for
rooms measuring from 270ft2
(25m2) and from a listening
distance of 10-12ft (3-3.5m).
Aria 948 symbolises the return of
the “true” acoustic loudspeaker.
A new type of 3-way loudspeaker
with two 8" (21cm) speaker
drivers effortlessly providing
intense and controlled bass. The
intention was a return to the very
essence of acoustics for those
who are passionate about music.
This is the ultimate loudspeaker
of the range for rooms measuring
from 320ft2 (30m2) and from a
recommended listening distance
of 12ft (3.5m).
Aria 905
Aria 906
Aria 926
Aria 936
Aria 948
Aria CC 900
Aria SR 900
• Type
Two-way bass-reflex
bookshelf
loudspeaker
Two-way bass-reflex bookshelf
loudspeaker
Three-way bass-reflex
floor standing loudspeaker
Three-way bass-reflex floor
standing loudspeaker
• Type
Three-way bass-reflex floor
standing loudspeaker
Two-way bass-reflex floor
standing centre speaker
Two-way sealed bipolar
surround loudspeaker
• Speaker drivers
5" (13cm) Flax bass-midrange
1" (25mm) Al/Mg TNF
inverted dome tweeter
6 " (16.5cm) Flax bass midrange
1" (25mm) Al/Mg TNF
inverted dome tweeter
Two 61/2" (16.5cm) Flax bass
61/2" (16.5cm) Flax bass midrange
1" (25mm) Al/Mg TNF
inverted dome tweeter
Three 61/2" (16.5cm) Flax bass
61/2" (16.5cm) Flax bass midrange
1" (25mm) Al/Mg TNF
inverted dome tweeter
• Speaker drivers
Two 8" (21cm) Flax bass
61/2" (16.5cm) Flax bass midrange
1" (25mm) Al/Mg TNF
inverted dome tweeter
Two 61/2" (16.5cm) Flax bass
midrange
1" (25mm) Al/Mg TNF
inverted dome tweeter
Two 5" (13cm) Flax bass
midrange
Two 1" (25mm) Al/Mg TNF
inverted dome tweeter
• Frequency
response (±3dB)
60Hz - 28kHz
55Hz - 28kHz
45Hz - 28kHz
39Hz - 28kHz
• Frequency
response (±3dB)
37Hz - 28kHz
57Hz - 28kHz
85Hz - 28kHz
• Low frequency
point -6dB
52Hz
47Hz
37Hz
32Hz
• Low frequency
point -6dB
31Hz
50Hz
67Hz
• Sensitivity
(2.83V/1m)
89dB
89.5dB
91.5dB
92dB
• Sensitivity
(2.83V/1m)
92.5dB
91dB
90dB
• Nominal
impedance
8 Ohms
8 Ohms
8 Ohms
8 Ohms
• Nominal
impedance
8 Ohms
8 Ohms
8 Ohms
• Minimum
impedance
4 Ohms
4.6 Ohms
2.9 Ohms
2.8 Ohms
• Minimum
impedance
2.5 Ohms
4.3 Ohms
3.6 Ohms
• Crossover
frequency
25 - 100W
25 - 120W
40 - 250W
50 - 300W
• Crossover
frequency
50 - 350W
40 - 200W
25 - 120W
• Recommended
amplifier power
2 500Hz
2800Hz
290Hz / 2400Hz
260Hz / 3100Hz
• Recommended
amplifier power
280Hz / 2 600Hz
2800Hz
2200Hz
• Dimensions
(HxWxD)
135⁄32 x 811⁄32 x 941⁄64"
(334x212x245mm)
153/8 x 87/8 x 111/32"
451/4 x 119/16 x 145/8”
(1150x294x371mm)
• Dimensions
(HxWxD)
451/4 x 145/8 x 169/16”
(1150x371x420mm)
77/8 x 2063/64 x 95/8”
(200x533x245mm)
1139⁄64 x 153/4 x 611/16"
(295x400x170mm)
(390x225x280mm)
403/4 x 119/16 x 145/8”
(1035x294x371mm)
• Weight
13lbs (5.8kg)
19lbs (8.5kg)
55lbs (25kg)
64lbs (29kg)
• Weight
77lbs (35kg)
23lbs (10.5kg)
12lbs (5.6kg)
Black High Gloss finish
Walnut finish
1/2
Black High Gloss finish
Walnut finish
Black High Gloss finish
The Aria CC 900 2-way centre
speaker can be easily combined
with the front speakers of the
range. The CC 900 was developed
with particular attention to timber matching in order to obtain
sonic coherence and homogeneity
for all kinds of configurations.
Recommended for rooms measuring from 215ft2 (20m2) and for
a listening distance of 10ft (3m).
Walnut finish
Aria SR 900 is a 2-way bipolar
surround loudspeaker with the
same acoustic characteristics as
the other loudspeakers in the Aria
range. Composed of two 5” (13cm)
woofers with Flax sandwich cones,
it provides very high-definition
and natural sound. For the treble
register, there are two aluminium/
magnesium inverted dome tweeters with Poron suspension and
a waveguide for a better control
of directivity.
Black Lacquer finish
EXP - GB
FOCAL® is a trademark of FOCAL-JMLAB®
Focal-JMlab® - BP 374 - 108, rue de l’Avenir - 42353 La Talaudière cedex - France - Tel . +33 (0) 477 435 700 - Fax + 33 (0) 477 435 704 - © Focal-JMlab 2013 - SCFG-130713/4
Focal®, Focal The Spirit of Sound®, Utopia®, Dôme®, Bird®, Electra, Chorus, Easya, Dimension, Aria, Sib&Co, XS Book, XS 2.1, Spirit One S, Spirit Classic, CMS, SM6, SM9, Spirit Professional, DFS®, Elite, K2 Power, Utopia Be,
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Due to constant technological advances, Focal-JMlab® reserves its right to modify specifications without notice.
Images may not conform exactly to specific product - Photos L’Atelier Sylvain Madelon
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