Zu introduces Soul 6


Major changes:
1. $5999 starting price
2. Okoume standard finish instead of hickory
3. Bigger cabinet - up from 31.5" to 36"
4. 120 days to audition in home!

Zu claims Druid 6-type performance, deeper bass than mk.II, more amp friendly, horn-like impulse response.
I am intrigued.  Soul Supreme is a nice value at $4500 so Zu must really feel this a step up in performance to price it above that.  



I owned quad ESL-57 and then stacked ESL-57 40 years ago. Loved them. WIth the right tube amplification and absent deep bass cravings, that is a compelling combination that spoils you for many modern alternatives, within SPL and dynamic limits.

I got into Zu 18 years ago after a multi-decades search for something that would deliver the immediacy of Quad ESL, crossoverless lack of choke points, and with the dynamic shove of an efficient dynamic speaker. From 1980 to 2004 that wasn't available, so I settled on reasonably-efficient 2-way systems. I also ran those Quad ESLs on a precursor to Atmasphere -- Julius Futterman hand-built OTL monoblocks, so we're roughly on the same page if time is offset by many years.

I have listened to many Devore-based systems. The central problem with Devore is poor integration of the behaviors between drivers. Particularly, the woofer behaviors are laggard, so in every Devore speaker I've heard, one hears disparate driver behaviors accentuated by bloated bass that just throws off any chance of coherency. I hear the crossover choke points over unified tone and time/dynamic behaviors, and the differences in tweeter and midrange dynamic behoaviors.

The Marantz 8b can sound old school and slow with certain tubes. If you are aiming for that quick, articulate, acrobatic Quad ESL sound from that amp with a dynamic (Zu) speaker, stuff it with the STR-450 EL34 tube Mesa Boogie sells (NOS last production Siemens/Germany). They are hypertested, reliable, crisp, clean, fast and toneful.

Once you do that, amp attributes accrue to Zu speakers. If you can't do Druid 6, Soul 6 is Zu's most lightning-quick, agile, acrobatic, responsive.speaker, and when you get the Griewe floor Gap adjusted, it's good for easily recognizable 32 Hz tones with an expansive, point-source dispersive soundstage

Point is, if you appreciate the agility of stacked vintage Quad ESL-57s, Soul 6 or Druid 6, or for that matter any Zu speaker is the closest dynamic equivalent for practical use in domestic spaces, and it will blow away the Quad on dynamic elasticity, tonal realism and convincing bass.



I’ll add that I’m a 50+years guitar player and both acoustic and electric guitar sounds are critical to my impression of authenticity.

All the Zu speakers do electric guitar via specific guitar amps unusually authentically. Soul Supreme will do that do. Soul Supreme is more amp-friendly for a wider-variety of amps due to its 16 ohms impedance and beautiful Radian 850 supertweeter that rolls off beyond 18kHz. The Soul 6 hides nothing but also reveals everything you crave. It’s quicker, punchier and delivers more harmonic air. But it won’t cover for trouble cascading from upstream in your gearchain -- nor from a terrible recording.

But if Quad ESL is your measure of sound, Soul 6 is the most unified, articulate, electrostatic-quick dynamic speaker I know of, except it delivers more tone.


Rhthmnsound, I can't comment on the Soul 6, but I'm a near-14 years customer of Definitions, over two models, current ones optimised, and lots of attention to my power and acoustics. I can genuinely say that Zu tone is a thing to behold, and it absolutely delivers. It's high efficiency and easy impedance means it can easily saturate a space and fill a room. And when that is predicated on authentic tone, timbral accuracy and a natural balance of bloom, heft and speed, you have a truly wondrous presentation.

I've just made massive strides in my analog setup and reduced a source of mechanical noise in my room, and the Zu presentation is startling again, nearly a decade and a half into familiarity with the house sound.

It seems that many of the commenters say that the Soul 6 is a very realistic and live sounding speaker.  I feel the same way about my open baffles so I’m wondering if any of those who own the Souls have any thoughts about the Soul sound vs the open baffle sound?

@213cobra Thanks for the great write up. I have had the Zu Omen Defs since 20212 and now thinking of upgrading to the Omen Def Supreme or at least buying the upgrade kit along with the new plinths.