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This review first appeared in the November 2011 issue of hi-end hifi magazine of Germany. You can also read this review of the Elipson Planet L in its original German version. We publish its English translation in a mutual syndication arrangement with the publishers. As is customary for our own reviews, the writer's signature at review's end shows an e-mail address should you have questions or wish to send feedback. All images contained in this review are the property of fairaudio or Elipson - Ed.

: Jörg Dames
Sources: CD-Player Fonel Simplicité, Laptop with foobar2000 and J River MC with Northstar USB dac32 or Benchmark DAC1 USB
Amplification: Fonel Emotion, Abacus Ampino, Funk MTX Monitor V3b, Belles 21A, Audionet AMP monos
Loudspeakers: Thiel CS 3.7, Sehring S 703SE, Quadral Rondo, PSB Image B6
Cables: Low-level Straight Wire Virtuoso, Vovox; high-level HMS Fortissimo, Reson LSC 350
AC power: Quantum-Powerchords, Hifi-Tuning Powercord Gold incl. IeGo terminations, MF-Electronic strip
Rack: Lovan Classic II
Review component retail: €770/pr, matching stands €219

Put the round in the corner. Whilst such a soccer slogan clearly suits today’s French Elipson Planet L to a 't', they’d not only have to prove their mettle in the listening room but diameter and weight quite diverge from the round weapon of choice on the green. With a circumference of 90cm and weight of 7kg these balls exceed FIFA’s guide lines by 20 centimeters or 6.5kg. Nevertheless this wouldn’t prevent us from ‘kicking’ them vigorously during our auditions.

A well-rounded proposition? I suspect that most readers won’t greet the Elipson brand with a spontaneous "yeah, very familiar!" Heck, I’d not crossed their path until a chance encounter some three years ago during an IFA show visit. But this firm is far from a newcomer. They’ve been around more than 70 years, i.e. were founded in 1938. The obsession with spherical enclosures goes back to the beginning, originally with gypsum for the building block. Despite this somewhat fragile material the round speakers soon found themselves used in recording/broadcast studios and concert halls.

Those interested in company history might want to reference the German importer’s relevant page. Their Michael Proske mentioned in passing that certain B&W speaker developments are/were based on Elipson patents. Which doesn’t begin to explain Elipson’s affinity for spheres, a question the French answered rather laconically. To wit, one attempts to undermine enclosure resonance where the absence of edges and panels automatically minimizes said behavior over standard boxes, all to get a head start on the battle against ‘bad vibes’. Equally apparent is that on matters of dispersion and edge reflections the spherical form causes less interference than standard boxes which must attempt to compensate with rounded profiles and clearly defined distances of drivers to enclosure edges.

In response to my question what concrete audible advantages one should suspect from the spherical geometry, I was told about a "brighter and larger" sound. Okay, I let that stand on its own since we get to my audition results shortly. Elipson claims two years of R&D investiture into the Planet L project which causes a bit of a question mark given that the current balls don’t look much different than those from 40 years ago (reference the photos on the earlier web page by Connect Audio).