I notice they’ve dropped the shorter Opticon 5’s. I think that’s a real shame.
For practical reasons in many European homes, the Mk1 5’s solved a lot of problems. Not everyone wants to shoehorn a meter high plus loudspeaker in their living room. You could also consider ‘significant-other factor‘ (aka WAF).
For me, in my living room with a projector, I have to fit loudspeakers under my screen. They can’t go left or right of the screen because they would be too close to the side walls (read bass boom), plus, that’s where I have my sources and amp and sub.
If I have metre high speakers, it means raising the screen to an uncomfortable height.
Yes, I could look at the Opticon 2’s. But it’s nice to have the option, which was there with the Mk1’s, and it’s nice to have the hybrid tweeter if that floats your boat too which the standmounts don’t offer.
Also a shame that they don’t do a light wood finish like they do with the Oberons. I’m not a great fan of vinyl rap, but jt somehow looks less painful, less 1980’s, with lighter colours. (Compare Focal’s beautiful 816 for example). Yes, I know Dali Opticons are actually made in Denmark, and I know Monitor Audio Silvers are made in China, but you’ve gotta say the MA’s are in a genuinely different league in terms of standard of finish. To be fair, they are about the best finished speakers you can get south of £2k, so maybe its not a fair comparison.
I have to say, aesthetically I’m not overly enamoured by the Mk2’s which is a shame, because I absolutely LOVE Dali’s sound. Sooo musical, foot-tapping, engaging. They have a very difficult to describe magic that many many other manufacturers just don’t have IMO.
If we ever have a Hifi Show again, I would guarantee that if you visited one, you’d be hanging around in the Dali room a lot longer than many others, simply because the music being played there was so engaging, you’d actually forgotten what you went in there for. IMO Neat have this special trick too.
Of course, you have to go floorstander for the hybrid soft-dome/ribbon tweeter, so previously the 5’s offered you that performance benefit, while maintaining the more modest proportions.
So for me, in Dali’s world, I think the more expensive Rubicons are the sweet spot. Cabinet finish is a significant step up, as is their performance. And the Rubicon range DO still offer the 5’s: the shorter floorstander with ribbon, soft dome and one mid-bass driver. I hope they don’t phase the 5’s out when they refresh the Rubicon range.
So with the Mk1 Opticon 5’s gone, the list of shortish floorstanders is becoming surprisingly small, and the remaining manufacturers are eeking out a nice niche for themselves: Neat Motive 2, Neat iota Alpha/Xplorer, Kudos X2 (is that just being discontinued? Maybe),
You might just about also consider Acoustic Energy AE309, Wharfedale Evo 4.3 and the MA silver 200, although all those are just that bit taller than the Dali Opticon 5’s.