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ATC SCM25A Pro

Price (pair): £7,156
Design: 3-way ported (ports can be plugged for unported use)
Woofer: 7-inch carbon/paper cone
Mid-range: 3-inch soft dome
Tweeter: 25mm neodymium soft dome
Frequency response: 47 Hz – 22 kHz

We can’t deny that ATC’s eye-wateringly priced SCM25s are beyond the reach of all but the wealthiest producers, but auditioning these phenomenal monitors will redefine your understanding of what a nearfield can do. We’re not for a minute suggesting that the average home producer is going to consider dropping seven grand on a pair of monitors, but ATC are striving for greatness here; these are true pro monitors, built in the time-honoured engineering tradition of creating the best possible product first then worrying about the price later.

The stunningly tight and accurate bass response is the first thing that hits you: this isn’t just deep or weighty bass; it’s controlled and precise in a way that’s rarely heard. The SCMs won’t flatter a bad kick drum that’s been compressed or distorted to give it weight. They won’t struggle to keep up with complex sub bass interspersed with fast transients. Instead, they’ll simply reveal details of the lower frequencies with ease.

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The bass is impressive in its own right but that flat, revealing ultra-clear response continues throughout the frequency range. ATC’s soft dome mid-range drivers are widely lauded for their precision and clarity. In this design they blend seamlessly with the tweeters and woofers at the crossover points, providing a reliable reference which exposes every last detail of your work. Microscopic adjustments to compression and EQ are revealed with incredible clarity. These are monitors which truly expose every last detail of your music.

The ATCs are undeniably expensive in comparison to a lot of very good monitors, but don’t make the mistake of assuming they’re overpriced. Our advice? Only audition them if you’re happy for every other nearfield suddenly to seem inferior.

9th December, 2013

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