Cessaro Horn Acoustics Alpha III
4-Way Horn Loaded Floor Standing Loudspeaker
Cessaro created an ultimate level performance horn speaker system that allowed an extensive upgrade path which they refer to as the Modular Line. This allows the music enthusiast to start with an Alpha III speaker system and then upgrade to the Beta and Gamma series by simply purchasing the parts required for the upgrade. So while in theory the Alpha series is the entry into the Modular Line, after experiencing the Alpha III it is difficult to imagine why anyone would ever want to change their speaker system ever again.
For many years the legendary Alpha II had set new standards for a compact 3-way horn speaker system, especially in terms of sound quality, engineering and execution. In late 2020, Cessaro announced that the new Alpha III had arrived. It was such a radical change from the previous model that Ralph Krebs (Cessaro’s founder and chief designer) considered introducing it as a totally new range, however he ultimately felt that it was still desirable to stay within the Modular Line concept so that customers could protect their investment with the ability to facilitate easy upgrade opportunities in the future. The Alpha III makes some significant improvements while still maintaining a relatively compact footprint. The result is a speaker that has been heralded as a game changer for compact horn speaker design. There simply has never been anything like this speaker available to the commercial market before and it is frankly a sonic powerhouse, bringing true high end horn performance into a package that can still fit into a relatively normal listening room.
The Alpha III is now a 4-way horn speaker with an active bass system. This fundamental change has introduced a new driver configuration, adjustable crossover points and upgraded drivers. The 16″ TAD bass driver remains and is now actively driven by a reference quality 1000W Class A/B power amplifier just like the Beta and Gamma models (optional D-Class Amp with DSP) and it can go down to around 25Hz which is much lower than ever before. Efficiency has been moved up by around 3dB and at 100dB (1W/1m), the Alpha III is extremely easy to drive, allowing the use of any kind of amplifier. Some users are even running 6W SET amplifiers, thanks to the partly active section for the range of 25-80Hz.
Another landmark for Cessaro is the development of their own drive units. After many years of development and using the traditional high quality TAD drive units as a reference, Cessaro have now produced in-house drivers that take performance to a new level above and beyond the previous performance levels and are perfectly suited to their speaker applications. The new 11” upper bass driver, the Beryllium midrange compression driver and the super-tweeter with its solid milled brass front horn are all new Cessaro drive units made in-house. This is a first for Cessaro and the culmination of a vision that started many years ago. Flexibility has always been a major goal for Cessaro. Even Alpha II speakers from ten years ago can be upgraded to the new Alpha III.
The work that has gone into this speaker system is evident as soon as you hear the first note being played. If you have never heard a properly designed, properly engineered, properly built horn speaker… well you are in for a treat. And if you have, this will re-set the bar for you. The Alpha III has revelatory dynamics and speed. It energises the air between the speaker and the listener in a way that is ‘physical’, meaning it is a really visceral, palpable experience. When you attend a live venue and the artist first presses a piano key, strums a guitar or hits a snare drum, there is a real presence that you can’t ignore. You have no choice but to pay attention. It is totally commanding. This is due to real life dynamics and that is the one quality that directly communicates the musical content to you. This is what the Alpha III re-creates in your listening room. Dynamics, dynamics, dynamics… with no hint of aggression, no fatigue, silence between the notes, nuances and micro-details sprinkled in the air around you like a fine mist.
At this level of engineering, fit and finish and investment, a music enthusiast has certain expectations from what a high-end speaker should deliver. The Alpha III is an example of a speaker that delivers and then some. Mated with suitably synergistic electronics and source, it is one of the closest experiences that you can have in your listening space of the illusion of being in the front row of a full orchestral live performance. The scale, the dynamic shading, the frequency extremes, the clarity & speed, the ability to convey complexity with effortless ease, the communication of subtlety and most importantly, the unmeasurable emotion that music creates within us… this is the Alpha III. Out of this world!
PS. We recommend that anyone who is interested in quality music reproduction should hear this speaker, even if it is not in your budget – just for the experience. The Cessaro Alpha III is part of the Knox Audio reference system and can be auditioned by reaching out to Knox Audio firstname.lastname@example.org
|Model||Cessaro Alpha III|
|Type||4 Way Horn System|
|Bandwidth||28Hz – 40,000Hz|
|Bass||16“ Alnico drive unit (active with Class A/B poweramp)|
|Low/Mid||Cessaro 11“ Alnico drive unit|
|Mid||Cessaro 2“ Beryllium compression driver and composite horn|
|Tweeter||Cessaro Alnico ringradiator with CNC milled brass horn|
|Recommended Room Size||35-60m²||Dimensions||53 cm x 91 cm x 174 cm (W x D x H)|
|Weight||each channel around 280 kg|