High end sound in a small package. The Sonus Faber Toy monitors are beautiful with their leather bound faces and high quality drivers but they give you incredibly good sound for the money. They look and sound like new. They can be picked up in California and can be mated to the excellent Triad Subwoofer listed separately, as well as put on stands for an extra $160 shipped.
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Strictly speaking, the Toy Monitor comprises a 1″ ring radiator tweeter and a 4.5″ coated cellulose woofer crossed over by a third order filter network in a leather clad, vented cabinet of approximately 6 liters volume with a single pair of binding posts on the back. But if that is all you know about it, you will be as completely unprepared for what it will do to you from the moment music emanates from it when you first hear it as we were. This is a speaker that must be auditioned, but it is likely you still won’t get how it could possibly make the sound it does. And be forewarned. Toys get under your skin with shocking ease and they don’t leave. Unforgettable, that’s what they are.
Everyone for whom we have played them has reacted with the same astonishment. Here is what recent Toy owner Mike thinks of them: “So far LOVING the Toys. Wow. And I barely have everything set up right, mainly listening to over the air radio and it’s pretty insane just with that. I just plopped them down and turned on the radio. I was like, whoa!! Where is this coming from? Finally got the Sonos up and running with just a fraction of my collection and mostly compressed MP3 and (even) those sound scary. I’m almost afraid to get the WAV files up and running this weekend! Too fun they are….”
Sure, we’ve heard small speakers sound big before, although maybe none so small sound quite this big, but it’s the way they sound big that is the trick. They simply let sound unfold in front of you in an utterly disarming yet mesmerizing way. You can’t help but wondering what this or that piece of music will sound like when presented to you while you are under the spell of the Toy. Bob and I sat here at the store one night after we closed at 7:00 and just kept putting on track after track, marveling at the rich, detailed, airy, spacious sound. And for the two of us experienced, if not jaded, listeners, to have not a care in the world about upgrading the $3500 system we were listening to is praise of the highest order. Support them from beneath with a REL T-Series subwoofer and it’s the small room bang-for-buck champion of all time! They do that “toy” thing that caused Sonus Faber to name them so in the first place: “Sonus Faber conveys in the Toy the sheer experience of joy that comes from working with real passion and enthusiasm for music of all kinds. Toys have always been synonymous with happiness and surprise, the same emotions the art of sound has conveyed from time immemorial.” We’ll second that!