Wharfedale Aura series and their difficult market placement


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Recently Wharfedale released the Aura and placed them right between the EVO and Elysian series.

A quote from Darko’s website

The press release tells us that the Aura’s high gloss cabinets are slightly larger than those seen with EVO but that the drivers and crossover components are closer to those used for Elysian.

To wit, all bass and midrange drivers are made from a “proprietary woven glass fibre matrix” that’s been trickled down from Elysian. The 2-way Aura 1 comes fitted with a 13cm mid/bass unit whereas the 3-way Aura 2 lands with a 10cm midranger and a 15cm bass unit. The Aura 3 and Aura 4 each feature the same 10cm midrange driver as the Aura 2 with the Aura 3’s bottom end augmented by a pair of 13cm bass drivers and the Aura 4 extended its tinw bass drivers’ diameter to 15cm.

Optically it is good looking loudspeaker, but it looks like a slightly updated Evo with a glossy layer. it is in a difficult position. Having crossovers “closer to” the flagship model does not really seem to be a deal maker.

In marketing a range of 3 choices usually goes into a subjective cheap and okay - consumer pick - flagship. order. In this case it would suggest the aura would be the golden middle way, but I wonder…

Below the Elysian 2 and Evo 4.2

The Evo won awards and received praise (many articles online to back it up) for its midrange dome and amt tweeter implementation ‘and’ trickle down tech from the Elysian. These reviews are a bit of a handicap in releasing the Aura in my opinion because what justifies the price difference for the informed consumer who follows it all.

Audio wise the slightly larger footprint will for sure make a little difference as any model that is bigger than another will do. The Elysian simply topped it by being a largest footprint version which in scale does lots to the “effortlessness” of the experience in any speaker model as demonstrations showed. Offcourse the components top it off but in general play a side role here in the experience.

The point is that when someone who bought a 800 euro Evo 4.2 could maybe once reach out to the flagship Elysian of a few thousand dollars. But why should anyone spend 1900 euros on an upgraded glossy Evo that is slightly bigger. It seems the choice for the Elysian 2 is more obvious in that case. People who kind of mark 2000 euros as a threshold probably have no problem with a 1000 more for the Elysian.

Curious product placement for the moment.
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Too many products in too many similar product ranges.

It's an IAG thing, more so than many companies.

Nice speakers though, but they look like floorstanders, on stands.

They need a shorter plinth really, as the fancy tweeter might be too high?

Unusual design.
3-way system standmount models

Perhaps a significant price drop on the Evos will be on its way soon.
Probably. That’ll be a good part.


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