First Look: New Adamson CS-Series Compact Loudspeakers

The details on a versatile new loudspeaker set, plus a first-hand report on a live demo by a veteran audio professional.
New Adamson CS-Series loudspeakers.

Editor’s Note: Adamson recently unveiled new CS-Series loudspeakers and hosted a live demo that was attended on our behalf by veteran audio professional Andrew Stoakley. First up is an overview of the new series, followed by Andrew’s experiences at the demo event, which was held at Adamson HQ in Port Perry, Ontario in late October.

The new Adamson Systems Engineering CS-Series is designed to bring the performance of the company’s compact S-Series loudspeakers into the networked realm with onboard amplification and DSP plus Milan-ready AVB connectivity. Rounding out the new series are a suite of CS rack-mounted systems and dedicated CS software.

The new series is comprised of the ultra-compact CS7 two-way, full-range array enclosure; CS7p point-source enclosure; and companion CS118 subwoofer, along with the sub-compact CS10 two-way, full-range array enclosure; CS10n narrow-dispersion array enclosure; CS10p point-source cabinet; and companion CS119 subwoofer.

CS-Series loudspeakers offer the same form factors as their S-Series counterparts, and their compatible sonic signatures are designed to be uniform with the S-Series and IS-Series to help ensure scalable configurations for applications ranging from portable corporate events to touring and installed systems. The turnkey CS Upgrade Kit allows any existing S-Series cabinet to be converted to a CS model by removing four screws, connecting the CS Jackplate with the provided wiring connectors, and switching the front grille.

Also included are four rack-mounted products, including the CS Gateway, a 16 x 16 matrix with 16 channels of DSP containing dual-LAN, Milan-ready AVB, AES/EBU, and analog connections. Further, the NDS is a network and analog patch bay that allows users to send redundant audio and control to CS loudspeakers on a single network cable.

Meanwhile, the PDS is designed to ensure that all CS-Series systems receive ample power, regardless of region, and it also allows the user to monitor consumption data, both per power output as well as overall draw. And, the CS Bridge is designed to replace existing network infrastructure in Adamson’s E-Rack, allowing users to integrate the CS-Series into their existing inventories by converting dual-LAN, Milan-ready AVB signal to AES/EBU while also offering six channels of DSP per unit.

Finally, Adamson’s new CS software is set up to enhance the ability to design, deploy, control, and monitor systems in mobile and installed environments with a simplified workflow and easy-to-navigate user interface that moves logically from design and simulation through to patch, control, metering, optimization, and diagnostics.

Drawing from early experiences with the products, veteran system designer and FOH engineer Patrick Demoustier (Simple Minds, Night of the Proms, Rock Werchter) says, “The CS-Series is already the future of networked audio. The CS7p offers an incredible power- and headroom-to-size ratio and the proven sound quality of Adamson’s line array systems. We’ve used it with great success on many corporate events, fashion shows, and car shows and as front fills and delays with larger systems; meanwhile, the CS7 is probably the most powerful ultra-compact array enclosure out there. When I first used it, I was sure that the limiter settings weren’t correct – so much power and body from such a compact speaker without even being close to the limiter threshold. But I was wrong…”

Now let’s hear how about the live demo event from Andrew Stoakley’s perspective (he also took the accompanying photos):

“On a crisp, clear late October evening, Adamson held an outdoor event to showcase the launch of their new CS series. Comprising of both loudspeakers and subwoofers, this new series was step up in both sonic quality and audio engineering.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is image-74.png

“Jeremiah Karni, the company’s Head of Education and Applications, welcomed the small group of socially distanced attendees and provided details about the development of the new line, followed by Brian Fraser, Head of Product and Technology, who offered additional perspective and specifics.

“Then it was time to dive into the demo. Adamson presented four levels of application, going through a series of smaller situations and then up to the larger array one might typically see at concert-type venues.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is image-75.png

“My first impression was the clarity of the loudspeakers. Clean, clear and powerful is what initially came to mind Even when listening from off-axis, you never got a sense of emptiness in the sound field.

“The first portion featured the CS7p with the CS118 subwoofer. Designed for smaller venues and presentation settings, the loudspeakers delivered a fantastic clarity, even with howling winds outside. I never felt like the sound was being “blown away” from me due to Mother Nature.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is image-76.png

“Next up was the CS10p, two units just by themselves. Punchy, punchy sound even without the benefit of an additional sub, and then when one was added one, you could feel the earth vibrating.

“This was followed by a session on a line array of CS7 and the CS119 subs — again, much of the same as above, but just louder with a wider array of coverage and oomph.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is image-77.png

“Last but certainly not least, we were treated to a line array of the CS10 and CS119 subs. This is where the demo really shone. Brian made the group walk to the very back of the coverage area that the array had been optimized for — about 250 feet, where we listened as we walked from the far field to the near field. You could certainly notice a difference in the mids and highs as we got closer to the array — almost like your body was absorbing the sound better.

“He then asked us to the return to our starting positions and this time engaged the optimization algorithm that Adamson has created. It’s a proprietary piece of software, running real time with zero latency. I was shocked at the difference. As on the previous walk without the software engaged, I’d say it was about 150 feet before I noticed a difference in the middle/near field where you could hear and feel it.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is image-79.png

“I actually went back and did the walk again to make sure I wasn’t hearing things. You felt like you were in the nearfield from 200 feet away, and with no latency, I noticed no sonic differences on my 250-foot walk. In talking with Brian afterward, I could feel a real sense of accomplishment with what the Adamson team has accomplished with this new series.

“All in all a wonderful — and highly informative — event.“

— Andrew Stoakley

Bonus video from Andrew of the event:

Go here to find out more about the new CS-Series.

Adamson Systems Engineering

Church Audio Tech Training Available Through Church Sound University. Find Out More!