Duevel loudspeakers, from Germany, are anything but ordinary - but then, since when has Walrus championed ordinary products? Sometimes, innovative thinking leads to visually conventional designs, where the innovation is hidden inside and only becomes apparent on close listening. Duevel speakers wear their original thinking on their sleeves, as it were, although the visually arresting reflector assemblies are obviously only part of the reason for the outstanding success of this range.
There are three models in the Duevel family, each of which is a very complete design in it's own right, with carefully optimised choice of drivers, reflectors, wiring, and cabinet construction. In other words, the cute, and relatively affordable Venus, for example, isn't just a scaled down Bella Luna, with all the compromises which come from such an approach - it's been designed from the ground up to meet a size and cost specification, an approach which maximises the potential of each model, and doesn't leave the consumer feeling that they've purchased a cost-limited compromise.
Let's look at the aspect of Duevel loudspeakers you can't escape from, the omni-directional reflector assemblies.
Venus Bella Luna Jupiter The reason for the omni-directional design of Duevel loudspeakers, as explained by designer Markus Duevel (and backed up by other, previous, articles going back 30 years), is that the listening room, far from being a neccessary evil, is actually an essential part of music reproduction in the home, strange though this sounds, without which it becomes difficult to perceive details of the original recording venue. Most loudspeakers don't interface with the room properly, not allowing the room to perform it's function, whereas properly designed omni-directional designs do, bringing the room into play, and allowing the listener to better hear the original recorded acoustic.
It's important to stress the *properly designed* bit, as almost all past omni designs, because of shortcomings, have tended to bring the omni-directional principle into disrepute. The carefully optimised Duevel reflectors, and other aspects of the design, show just how successful, and correct, the principle can be. Duevels don't sound like unusual, trick, speakers, they just sound like very competent normal speakers, with the added benefit of superb openess and three dimensionality.
The smallest model in the range, with simplified reflector, and lower powered drive units, doesn't sacrifice soundstage dimensions, and doesn't even apparently lose much bass extension, for such a compact design (unless you're into organ music, or modern dance!). Like all Duevels, they're not specially fussy about placement, but Duevel say that left/right symmetry of the surroundings is quite important. We advise at least 2-3 feet (0.75-1.00m) clear of the back wall, but then we recommend this for virtually all speakers for best results. The Venus is capable of incredibly open and 3 dimensional results - it's very difficult to hear the loudspeakers working if you shut your eyes - whilst retaining the accurate lateral stereo placement of more conventional designs, the best of both worlds!
Dimensions: 970 x 280 x 280 (mm), Power handling: 100W RMS, Sensitivity: 88dB, Impedance: 4 Ohms, Response: 40Hz - 20kHz, Drive units: 8.8 inch + 1.3 inch, Weight: 20Kg
The Bella Luna is the middle model, and it's dimensions are that of a traditional full-range floorstanding design - the sort of size which most people consider acceptable (just, in some cases!) to get an extended bass performance. This is the model we were originally introduced to, well over a year ago, and one we retain huge fondness for. Overall balance is very even, with bags of detail through the mid and treble range. In my opinion, it's the mid, and right through the treble that Duevels really excel at, with the treble quality especially having a lucid and tactile quality reminiscent of the finest electrostatics - in fact, it's even better if anything, without the hassles of reliability and maintenance of electrostatics. Predominantly treble spectrum instruments, like cymbals, seem to hang in mid air betwen the speakers, in the manner of real life instruments, and quite unlike conventional forwards radiating speakers. It's the sort of quality you get used to, and you find it very difficult to go back to normal designs, which sound very box-bound by comparison.
On a technical note, the Bella Luna has a very useful 91dB sensitivity, at 6 Ohms, enabling the use of even quite modest power valve designs, although experience has shown them to be equally at home driven by valve or transistor. The explicit nature of the treble does, though, demand an amplifier of matching clarity and quality in this region, otherwise you will be disappointed. These speakers really do give as good as they get in this critical area.
Dimensions: 1040 x 280 x 280 (mm), Power handling: 150W RMS, Sensitivity: 91dB, Impedance: 6 Ohms, Response: 40Hz - 20kHz, Drive units: 8.7 inch + 1.5 inch, Weight: 35Kg
The stately father of the range, the Jupiter, brings all the benefits of Duevels to bigger rooms, for a genuine full range performance. Full symphony orchestras especially will benefit from the size and extension of the Jupiter, without losing any of the tactile, three dimensional, and open qualities which Duevel are famous for. Be warned, though, that these are big speakers, and do need a fairly large room to develop their qualities fully.
Please note, that the finishes shown for all Duevel models, not just the Jupiter, are a representative sample of the woods which Duevel usually have available, but are by no means an exhaustive list. Sometimes the samples shown are not immediately available, but others, not featured, are. Check with us first for current ex-factory availability.
Dimensions: 1270 x 380 x 380 (mm), Power handling: 200W RMS, Sensitivity: 92dB, Response: 30Hz - 20kHz +-3dB, Drive units: 12.6 inch + 4 inch, Weight: 70Kg