REVIEW: OPHIDIAN MOJO STAND-MOUNT LOUDSPEAKERS
Ophidian Audio has never failed to impress me at The Bristol Show. Each year I sit there amazed at the sound of its range of compact loudspeakers. The company's alliterative M series features the Minimo, Mojo and Mojo Centre. I have had the Mojo sat on my speaker stands for the past few weeks.
Two-way stand-mount loudspeaker
Designer Gareth James is the man behind the speaker brand. It is his vision that birthed Ophidian Audio and the company's goal to produce bold and exciting high-end audio products with a focus on high-quality components and intelligent design.
Top cabinet makers based in the South Yorkshire city of Sheffield build the cases with final assembly, and quality checking carried out in-house at Ophidian HQ, on the Wirral.
The Mojo is a compact 2-way loudspeaker. Due to their size, the speakers can be stand- or wall-mounted. Utilising dual 3.5-inch mid-bass units in a close coupled array and the unique Aeroflex port system the Mojos are capable of producing a truly room-filling sound. The drive units utilise lightweight and stiff aluminium diaphragms, balanced neodymium magnet motor systems and long throw rubber surrounds.
A 27mm tweeter produces high frequencies with a Sonolex coated fabric diaphragm and low distortion neodymium motor system closely coupled between the bass/mid units.
Going back to that Aeroflex technology; this system enables highly compact speakers to produce deep and precisely controlled bass by keeping port velocity to a minimum. Aeroflex uses a much larger and longer internal port to massively reduce air velocity by 200% or more while avoiding many of the side effects suffered by full-length transmission line designs. Additionally, the drive units are supported throughout their stroke. By building the port systems directly into the cabinet structure, the outer walls are braced and strengthened minimising panel resonances.
Ophidian Mojo review
The definitions of Mojo include a magic charm or magical influence. I was looking forward to seeing if I would fall under the spell of these compact Ophidians.
When I took delivery of the box, I was waiting for the courier to bring a second. It turns out that both 253mm x 142mm x 199mm (HxWxD) speakers were packaged in the one carton. I knew that they were small but, somehow, I had remembered them being a little larger than that.
Each speaker tips the scales at 5Kg and has a frequency response of 46hz to 28khz and sensitivity rated at 87.5dB (2.83v).
As the speakers are asymmetrical, it is worth experimenting with positioning. Personally, having the tweeters on the outer edge seemed to give a more cohesive sound.
As with any rear-ported speakers, it is worth experimenting with the distance between the speaker and the wall behind them which will have a direct result on the bass response. While we are around the back, these are some of the very few speakers that actually look as handsome from the back as they do the front. There is something distinctly steam punk about that rear port grille and backplate.
Hooking the speakers up to my amplifier and kicking off my listening session with 'Dream Factory' by Prince and the Mojo pair instantly display their talent for throwing out a sound more substantial than their stature.
They did look a little awkward even on the relatively small top-plate of the SolidSteel stands, but it struck me how ideal the Mojos are for the average UK house. Furthermore, how impressive their sound/size ratio is for London homes where most of us live in flats/house shares.
Selecting Rodrigo y Gabriela's 'Hanuman' from my NAS via Roon and the Ophidian Mojos showed that they are equally adept at producing clarity and power without sounding over-driven or flustered.
I truly tested the Mojos by selecting another digital file, this time Poulenc's Concerto for Organ, Timpani and Strings in G minor. However, the tiny speakers coped well separating the strings and high register organ. They even made a decent fist of the lower register keys and percussion. The timpani had weight, and the various moods throughout the piece were defined and immersive. I wasn't expecting such a great showing of this track. Well played, Ophidian. Well played indeed.
I'd buy them. Honestly, if it weren't for existing financial commitments over the next few months, I would be making a purchase. I have been that taken by them.
The speakers are well made, look great and perform fantastically. The Aeroflex system does create a lovely richness to the low-end, and the mids and top are agile and precise.
If you are short of space or looking for an extremely flexible compact speaker for the office or bedroom, you owe it to yourself to audition the Ophidian Audio Mojo.
The Mojos are priced at £850 for the pair and are available in Oak or Walnut real wood veneers. Alternatively, you can have them painted Satin Black or Satin White.
For more information visit Ophidian Audio.
StereoNET UK's Editor and Bass playing gadget junkie. He's captained the GadgetyNews good ship for over a decade, making low jargon high tech a very handy thing. His passion for gadgets and Hi-Fi is second only to being a touring musician.
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