Announcing the Sabrina
The inspiration for Sabrina arose from two distinct and seemingly disparate sources: the original WATT/Puppy, and the Alexandria XLF. The WATT/Puppy was the result of Dave Wilson’s belief that a well-designed compact loudspeaker could outperform many of the much larger state-of-the-art systems of its day. Sabrina is nearly the same size as its 1980s progenitor. The XLF, on the other hand, represents the current pinnacle of Wilson’s three-decades-long quest to bridge the gulf between live, unamplified music and its reproduction. The XLF platform offers the world’s most precise time-alignment capability, custom-designed drivers, and cabinet modules constructed from Wilson’s proprietary materials, reducing cabinet resonance and coloration to inaudible levels.
The objective for Sabrina was to take the wealth of knowledge and experience contained in the XLF and distill it down to its essence. To create a loudspeaker that, like the first WATT/Puppy, could stand alongside much larger systems and offer the kind of dynamic contrast and harmonic expression that is the defining character of Wilson Audio loudspeakers
All-new Architecture Using Proven Materials
When it comes to a loudspeaker’s architectural design, Wilson’s philosophy is driven by the notion that a loudspeaker’s form is inextricably tied to its function. The unique physical features which are required in order to reduce propagation errors and lower enclosure panel resonances have for decades now given Wilson loudspeakers their look. Arguably, there is a form of beauty singular to the congruent interplay of technical and aesthetic ideals. Sabrina’s cabinet is hand-assembled, glued with proprietary adhesives, hand-sanded, gel coated, painted with multiple layers of automotive-grade paint, inspected, then polished and buffed to the same exacting standard as every other Wilson loudspeaker. The front baffle and bottom panels are built from Wilson proprietary composite, X-Material.
When the drivers in a loudspeaker array are aligned so that the leading edge of transients from each driver arrives at the listener’s ear at the same time, the result is a profound improvement in dynamics, harmonic detail, transparency, and in other important areas of sonic performance.
Woofer: 8 inches (20.32 cm)
Material: Paper Cone
Tweeter: 1 inch, Dome (2.54 cm)
Material: Doped Silk Fabric
Midrange: 5 3/4 inches (14.61 cm)
Material: Paper Pulp
Frequency Response: 31 Hz ‚Äì 21 kHz: +/- 3 dB, RAR (Room Average Response)
Nominal Impedance: 4 ohms / 2.53 ohms minimum @ 139 Hz
Sensitivity: 87 dB @ 1W @ 1m @ 1 kHz
Height 38 inches (96.48 cm)
Height w/ Spikes 39 5/16 inches (99.80 cm)
Width 12 inches (30.48 cm)
Depth 15 3/16 inches (38.55 cm)
System Weight Per Channel 94 lbs (42.64 kg)
Approximate Shipping Weight 222 lbs (100.70 kg)
Wilson Audio’s Peter McGrath and John Giolas walked me through the design of the new $15,000/pair Sabrina. The loudspeaker has same general form factor and is slightly taller than their original WATT-Puppy, which was also a $15,000/pair speaker when it was first produced more than 20 years ago.
What’s different? First of all, the Sabrina is a one-box design. Its driver component is similar to the WP in that it uses a silk-dome tweeter, a 5″ ScanSpeak midrange unit, and an 8″ woofer, and a separate chamber absorbs the tweeter’s back wave. The Wilson Sabrina was only being shown, not demonstrated, in Wilson’s suite at the Mirage, so I wasn’t able to listen to this promising design
More to come soon!