Wilson Audio announced its fifth all-new loudspeaker in as many years called the Yvette, which claims to be the most advanced and musically refined single-enclosure loudspeaker in company’s history. It derives its core technology directly from Wilson’s Sasha Series 2, the Alexia, and the Alexx — in some cases, with identical components.
Like all recent Wilson loudspeakers, the Yvette is the beneficiary of Wilson’s state-of-the-art composites research, the heart of which is the laser vibrometer. Beyond using the best enclosure materials, the Yvette’s architecture is driven by two factors: time-domain performance, and extremely low-resonance and vibration contribution.
The enclosure is built primarily from two Wilson- developed composites: the third generation of X-Material, an extremely well-damped and inert composite, and S-Material, which was developed for exquisite midrange performance.
The S-Material midrange baffle is angled to its own plane in order to optimize its time-domain relationship between the woofer below and the tweeter above. Wilson’s engineers designed a new venting system for the midrange enclosure, similar to those found on the XLF, Alexx, Alexia, and Sasha Series 2.
The tweeter baffle is built from X- Material, and, like the mid baffle, is optimized for time-domain performance and dispersion. The X-Material woofer baffle is also positioned optimally in the vertical array. As is true for the Sabrina, Alexx, and the upcoming WAMM, Yvette’s bass baffle angles back slightly toward the midrange for better dispersion accuracy in the upper bass, and more optimized time alignment between the woofer and midrange. The lowest section of the enclosure, below the woofer, changes direction again, and is perpendicular to the ground. This facilitates a smaller footprint when compared to the Sophia.
Bracing in this system is more ambitious and heroic than any previous single-enclosure system—another direct result of laser vibrometer testing. Even the tweeter grille design was scrutinized and meticulously designed, with a frame shape that reduces acoustic interaction.
Wilson’s exclusive resistor tuning system, located in an isolated chamber on the rear of the enclosure, can be accessed through a convenient cover on the rear of the loudspeaker. It features improved hardware and accessibility over that found in the Sophia 3.
The Yvette shape and overall aesthetic may call to mind the Sasha Series 2 and elements of the Sabrina. She is simple and organic, with sculpted lines that remind the viewer of the important function her shape serves.
In conjunction with the WAMM project, Wilson Audio recently completed yet another wave of research into tweeter technology and driver materials. Tweeters with domes constructed from beryllium and diamond—the seemingly ubiquitous choice of many loudspeaker engineers—were developed, tested, and rigorously compared to the latest version of Wilson’s Convergent Synergy Tweeter. While many of these designs held promise on paper, they all fell well short of the musicality, natural resolution, and coherence of Wilson’s tweeter.
The Yvette employs the MK III version of the Convergent Synergy Tweeter, which is also found in the Sasha Series 2 and the Alexx. The MK III features Wilson’s latest thinking on rear-wave diffraction and ultra-low resonance rear chambers. It mates seamlessly with Wilson’s proprietary midrange driver, which is the same unit found in the Alexandria XLF.
The ten-inch woofer chosen for the Yvette was (one of two woofers) originally developed for the Alexia, and is a cousin to the ten-inch in the Alexx and the upcoming WAMM. These newest series of bass drivers are partially responsible for Wilson’s unique blend of dynamic contrast, impact, speed, and musicality. When installed in Yvette’s bass enclosure, which was optimized for this driver in terms of volume and resonance control, it pushes the boundary of musical accuracy, extension, and dynamics for such a compact loudspeaker.
While not adjustable in the time domain as are Wilson’s larger, modular designs, the Yvette benefits from Wilson’s patented testing protocols, and is uniquely time coherent for a single-enclosure design. Wilson continues to be the only loudspeaker company in the world that fully understands the musically deleterious artifacts caused by time-domain smearing endemic to all multi-driver systems, and has, for decades, continuously and rigorously innovated better and more effective solutions for propagation-delay distortion.
Price and Availability
The Wilson Yvette will begin shipping mid-July 2016 for $25,500 a pair in Wilsongloss Standard Colors. $26,150 in Wilsongloss Upgrade Colors.
- Enclosure Type Woofer: Rear Ported
- Enclosure Type Midrange: Rear Vented
- Enclosure Type Tweeter: Sealed
- Woofers: 10-inches (25.4 cm) Paper Pulp
- Midrange: 7-inch (17.78 cm) Cellulose/Paper Pulp Composite
- Tweeter: 1-inch (2.54 cm) Silk Dome
- Sensitivity: 86dB @ 1 Watt @ 1 meter @ 1kHz
- Nominal Impedance: 4 ohms / minimum 2.94 ohms @ 90 Hz
- Minimum Amplifier Power: 50 Watts per channel
- Frequency Response: 20 Hz – 25 kHz +/- 3 dB Room Average Response [RAR]
- Overall Dimensions:
- Height—41 inches (104.14 cm) w/o spikes
- Width—13 1/4 inches (33.66 cm)
- Depth—20 1/16 inches (50.92 cm)
- System Weight Per Channel: 175 lbs (79.38 kg)
- Total System Shipping Weight (approx.): 515 lbs (233.60 kg)