The ATC SCM7 is a diminutive loudspeaker of just 7 litres and costing from £875. Dan Worth takes a listen.
On different occasions over this past year Dominic and I have had the pleasure of listening to the SCM11s and the SCM19s from British loudspeaker company ATC. Each time we’d greeted their arrival with a mixture of apprehension and excitement. This is because our experience of ATC had taught us to expect great dynamics, attack, insight and truthfulness, but also the occasional jagged edge from the older style tweeter, particularly on poorer quality recordings.
However we needn’t have worried. For their new ‘passive’ range ATC has replaced a modified third party tweeter with its own in-house design – and it’s stunning. The unit on these new SCM7s, and the 11s, 19s and 40s is at once more refined, better controlled and truthful. Its secret is a dual suspension design, which is hand-built at ATC’s Stroud HQ and has taken the Company years to perfect. Coupled to a more efficient and linear underhung driver motor, the dual suspension controls the driver’s movement more precisely for lower distortion, better power transfer and a smoother response. ATC has got this design just right, because both the 11s and 19s have received our highest accolades.
AT FIRST GLANCE
The dinky SCM7s have a tiny 7-litre cabinet (hence the name), measuring 300x174x215mm and housing the tweeter and a 5″ linear mid/bass driver. The review sample’s curved design immediately felt solid and sturdy, with a high standard finish in real cherry wood veneer. They cost £810 a pair in the standard cherry or black ash options. However a special order piano black model comes in at a hefty £1243.
I was pleasantly surprised when I lifted the SCM7 from its box. It’s much heavier than I had imagined weighing-in at around the 7.4kg mark. Nearly half of this weight is due to the bass/mid driver’s massive 3.5kg underhung magnet system, which includes a 45mm flat wire voice coil, milled by ATC at Stroud on a machine designed by ATC’s founder and Chief Engineer Billy Woodman. Most of remaining weight is down to the heavily-braced veneered enclosure, which also sports chunky bi-wire terminals……read more
Drivers: HF ATC 25mm Neodymium Soft Dome, Mid/LF ATC 125mm SC
Matched Response: ±0.5dB
Frequency Response (-6dB): 60Hz-22kHz
Dispersion: ±80° Coherent Horizontal, ±10° Coherent Vertical
Sensitivity: 84dB @ 1W @ 1metre
Max SPL: 103dB
Recommended Power Amplifier: 75 to 300 Watts
Nominal Impedance: 8 Ohm
Crossover Frequency: 2.5kHz
Connectors: Binding Posts/4mm Plugs, bi-wire
Cabinet Dimensions (HxWxD): 300x174x215mm (grill adds 28mm depth)