Below is a review from our customer, Frank, who lives in Queensland and took delivery of his new Wyndham Audio BR2 Loudspeakers in 2017.
Welcome to my review of Wyndham Audio's BR2 stereo loudspeakers.
I'm a music enthusiast. A piano player since the early years of primary school and an avid listener of a wide selection of artists and genres. It's difficult to define my tastes beyond that I simply listen to what sounds good to me- I've always had an ear for music and I know what I'm looking for when I find it.
First and foremost I am a classical listener, but over the years I've found my tastes have branched out to ambient, experimental and electronic artists too.
My love of music led me first to the mobile audio field, in which I'm fairly experienced. It's only recently that I've had the means to expand my hobby to the living room through a system of my own.
The system I ended up building is a modest one, but one that I am proud of thanks to the helpful input of many fellow enthusiasts on this site and others.
Given budgetary constraints, my system is a multi-purpose beast and performs a number of multimedia duties. My goal in building this system was to achieve a realistic and cost effective balance between sound quality and practicality.
Power: Thor PS10
Source: Media PC
USB interface: Singxer F1
DAC: Schiit Modi Multibit
Amp: Odyssey Cyclops integrated, with upgraded everything
Speakers: Wyndham Audio BR2
After a long search for the perfect speakers for my purpose, I happened across Wyndham Audio's website. Initially lured in by the craftsmanship displayed across the range of Wyndham's products, a few exchanges with one of the owners, Keith, had me hooked.
It didn't take me long to be convinced that Keith was every bit the enthusiast I was, and then some. It was evident that this was more than just a business venture for him, it was a passion. That's what I like about Wyndham; it's a good old, back to the roots, enthusiast run local business- and it refllects in their service.
After a couple of emails back and forth (and more than my fair share of novice questions ) I was confident I was in the right place, and purchased myself a set of Wyndham's mid-tier offering, the BR2.
The BR2's arrived to me packed securely in two heavty wooden crates. I felt like a kid on Christmas. I knew I was in for a treat when I saw that even the boxes the speakers came in were custom built to exacting standards, complete with carry handles and all.
I gingerly opened the boxes and beheld my purchase.
There stood the mighty BR2's. Solid, imposing, beautiful.
The quality of construction was impeccable- good enough to satisfy even the most critical of cabinetmakers. Not a blemish in sight, not a thing out of place. The craftsmanship left absolutely nothing to be desired- the BR2's are engineered with an attention to detail that is rarely seen these days.
Standing on precision machined spikes and finished in matte black 2-pac paint, the speakers sat either side of my TV made for intimidating, monolithic structures. I thought to myself "If these sound as good as they look, then I'm winning."
And they do.
I eagerly plugged the cables in to the gold plated jacks of the BR2's and powered my system on. With baited breath, I clicked my way to my .flac collection. I knew exactly where I would start this journey.
Song One: Black Dunes by This Will Destroy You
American post-rock group This Will Destroy You remains one of my all time favourites, and I find myself returning to their earlier work time and time again. Best described as a 'wall of sound' , TWDY is characterised by its droning guitars and fierce drums and is a truly magnificent aural experience.
I have listened to Black Dunes almost every day for nearly ten years. It is one of my favourite songs and I know it inside out.
Hitting play, the BR2's came to life.
It was like hearing the song for the first time. Brand new, fresh.
Beginning with a slow, melancholic and gentle tempo, the BR2's drew me in like never before- lulling me into a trancelike state as I struggled to behold my ears. Before I could get my bearings, the song exploded into its climactic crescendo- guitars moaned, cymbals crashed and wave upon wave of glorious sound cascaded around me as the BR2's poured every ounce of their combined power into my ears.
Despite the unforgiving and relentless crashing of what sounds like a thousand drums, the BR2's held their own and never once ran out of breath. Indeed, with every intensifying smash of cymbals or tortured growl of guitar, the BR2's came more and more into their own. Unperturbed by the sheer volume of noise, the speakers powered through unwavering- never muddled, never confused.
The percussion hit with all the raw power of an angry, undulating ocean. The BR2's took a song that I thought knew well and exploded it around me, wrapping me in a cocoon of all consuming, merciless, fantastic noise. Played through the BR2's, I was awestruck. I have heard this song played live, and the BR2's made me feel like I was in front of the stage, swaying with the crowd again.
Finally, and with one last defiant crash of cymbals, the song ended and I was released from my stupor. These speakers were magnificent.
Song Two: The Last Foundry by Raime
Black Dunes- in all its ear-assaulting glory- is a very treble-centric song. Seeking to see how the BR2's faired in a darker environment, I turned to Raime.
Raime is a experimental electronic venture by Londoners Joe Armstrong and Tom Halstead.
Their album Quarter Turns Over a Living Line is a desolate, cold and foreboding collection of songs. The Last Foundry begins with a creeping, eerie rhythm that continues in circles, inspiring a trancelike attention from the listener that sits somewhere between mild terror and morbid curiosity. Once again, the BR2's demonstrated their capability to produce clear, crisp midrange and treble tones- but I knew that already.
Slowly, the ominous bass line of the song reared its head. I looked outside- puzzled as to why there was thunder with no clouds- and then gaped at the BR2 to my left as I realised the source of the noise.
Bass with no discernible source. Bass powerful enough that it can be felt in the centre of the chest. Reverberating, teeth rattling bass- the BR2's have it in buckets.
And yet- not ones to get ahead of themselves- the BR2's maintain their composure. The bass does not linger or run out of breath, nor does it overpower the more delicate details of the song- it's simply just...there. The Last Foundry was painted in a whole new light, or should I say dark. The song has always been an unsettling one- but the depth the BR2's gave it made it sound downright predatory.
Song Three: The Mirror Reflection (Part 2) by The Haxan Cloak
With the sun setting and the shadows in the living room lengthening, I found myself lured ever deeper into the darker corners of my collection. Inspired by the gobs of bass exhibited in the previous song, I was enticed to see exactly how far the BR2's would go in this respect.
Enter The Haxan Cloak.
The Haxan Cloak is dark, about as dark as it gets. Described as "medicated misery", most Bobby Krlic's magic happens between 20hz and 40hz.
Krlic's second album as The Haxan Cloak, Excavation casts a giant, terrible shadow over the listener. Through it Krlic tells the story of the soul's journey after death, and the various trials and tortures it experiences during its journey through the afterlife. If ever the BR2's meet their subsonic match, it will be in one of Krlic's pieces.
The horrifying climax of the album can be found in The Mirror Reflection (Part 2). A throbbing, gaping bass line greets us at the outset of the song, slowly giving way to a lilting, unsettling synthesiser track and eerie strings. Slowly, the bass drops lower and deeper, driving downwards until it provides the ominous heartbeat that forms the cadence for our ill-fated journey through the afterlife. Then, with the tone set, Krlic brings the song to it's ethereal zenith.
It's here that lesser systems come undone. Burning the candle at both ends- mashing together an assault of high and low range noise- many a decent setup comes unraveled and the whole thing starts sounding a bit untidy.
Fuelled by the not inconsiderable reserves of wattage from the Cyclops, the BR2's flexed their muscles and issued a breathtaking barrage of sound from their throats.
I played the segment again and again (it is one of my favourites) trying to find cracks in the wall of noise the BR2's sent my way. Short of the tiniest amount of high range peaky-ness that probably had more to do with room placement and positioning than the speakers, I could find none.
Throughout the entire ordeal, the BR2's maintained composure. Definition and separation was excellent, and that same sourceless bass kept coming at me wave after magnificent wave.
Song Four: Lit by Kiasmos
Having reached down into the deepest depths of my atmospheric library, I felt it was time to lighten the **** up.
Here to assist in clawing my way out of the pit of horror-bass I'd made myself was downtempo genius Kiasmos.
I employed Lit, the first track of their self-titled album for this purpose. Not so upbeat as to be considered jarring after wallowing in the miserable shadow of Bobby Krlic, but just enough so as to give both myself and the BR2's a well deserved break.
The song begins with a light, atmospheric synthesiser before introducing a subdued but motivated percussion track. A hearty bass rhythm joins the party to add momentum before the song blossoms into a gentle union of synthetic string and percussion instruments. I like this song because it gently introduces the listener into what ends up being quite a groovy and catchy album that remains simple and elegant throughout.
The BR2's handled the transition with laughable ease, once again their depth and clarity captured the energy and vibe of the song, making it all the more enjoyable. They did not overpower any particular element of the music with another element, the bass was once again hearty and clean, with trebles well controlled and luscious, even at the upper end.
Song Five: Bored by Deftones
Feeling nostalgic, I decided to dip my toes into a completely different genre to see how the BR2's faired amongst the mid-heavy realm of metal.
Blowing the proverbial dust off my lossless copy of Deftones 1995 album Adrenaline I selected Bored. I can tell you I was anything but bored during the BR2's rendition of this old favourite.
The BR2's presented the song differently than I've heard previously, bringing percussion and vocals forward just a touch from the guitar and bass tracks. It took a moment of adjustment, but I began to appreciate the characteristic more and more. As frontman Chino Moreno upped the ante and cut from his hushed singing to screamed vocals, so too did the guitars- stepping into an onslaught of heavy riffs.
Things often get confusing here and Moreno's vocals get lost in a mish mash of mean sounding guitar and bass- but not this time.
The BR2's brought the vocals front and centre, giving a live, stage-like atmosphere to the recording. I've never been lucky enough to see Deftones in the flesh but I found myself imagining that it would sound something like this. The song just seemed balanced through the BR2's, and for once I found myself appreciating Moreno's lyrics for their content rather than just their harsh delivery when presented through less capable loudspeakers.
Song Six: Some by Nils Frahm
After hours of listening I was exhausted. The last song I chose was contemporary piano composer Nils Frahm's masterpiece Some.
Some is a slow, intimate and melancholic work. After the highs and lows of my musical journey, listening to Frahm's work felt like coming home. The fact that I myself have learned the song and played it numerous times made me feel uniquely qualified to judge how the piece should sound.
Frahm has always kept his recordings raw, choosing to leave imperfections in place to allow for what he believes is a more realistic and personal experience. I agree with him, and through the BR2's I experienced his intention all the more.
Separated from the rolling tones of Frahm's piano work, one can detect the tiniest of background details. The creak of his chair, the soft clack of piano keys, the squeak of a peddle being pressed to the floor or the gentle flutter of a page of sheet music being turned- it's all there.
The BR2's shone and demonstrated their flexibility, providing the micro-detail and separation between sounds in the recording that would pass otherwise undetected through lesser speakers. The clarity of the BR2's once again took me by surprise; I had characterised them as luscious and powerful, and my experience in the head-fi realm has led me to expect that this often leads to compromise in the realm of definition. This is not the case with the BR2's, and it appears that Wyndham has achieved success in creating loudspeakers that are as rich as they are detailed.
The proof was in the pudding; I had but to close my eyes and it felt as if Frahm was in the same room as I was.
As I mentioned before, the BR2's are employed in a HTPC multimedia set up. Having played a number of movies and television series through them now, I can say with confidence that the speakers perform very well in this field. Vocals are well separated and clear- the BR2's do a good job of keeping them isolated from whatever background noise is occurring. Placed correctly in the room, the BR2's make for a rather enjoyable sound experience. Despite being a stereo setup, I didn't find myself feeling short changed in this respect and the BR2's did an admirable job of producing a very three-dimensional soundscape. A jack of all trades it would appear.
The Wyndham audio BR2 speakers are speakers that rise to the occasion. Powerful, composed, detailed, rich and incredibly flexible- they perform far above their price point.
I would whole-heartedly recommend these loudspeakers to any enthusiast. Congratulations Wyndham on creating such a marvellous product.