Thiel has a well-earned reputation for making highly detailed and dynamically accurate loudspeakers. His smallest offering, the PCS, was first introduced in 2000. If you long for a desktop monitor that can maintain its sonic integrity even while delivering rock and roll recording at studio playback levels, the PCS may well be your perfect desktop loudspeaker. PCS stands for personal coherent source. Like most Thiel speakers the design goal for the PCS was to create a speaker with tonal, spatial, transient, and dynamic fidelity. To accomplish these goals in a small footprint enclosure, Thiel developed a special coaxial midrange tweeter. This driver incorporates a 4" anodized aluminum midrange diaphragm with a 1" anodized aluminum dome tweeter. This compound driver uses a mechanical crossover that couples the two speaker diaphragms at lower frequencies so the cones move in unison, but at higher frequencies the suspension decouples the mass of the midrange driver from the tweeter. This physical crossover combines the power handling capabilities of two separate drivers with the phase coherence of a single unit. Optimizing the compliance and damping of the compound driver makes it possible to achieve uniform frequency response from 100Hz up to 20kHz.
All the PCS's drive-units are made in-house by Thiel, and the heart of the speaker is the coaxial tweeter-midrange unit, similar to that used in the Thiel CS2.3. The important fact to note is that it uniquely uses a single motor and a mechanical crossover between the tweeter and midrange diaphragms. This unit crosses over below 700Hz or so to a metal-cone woofer, reflex-loaded by a shallow, flared port on the sloped-back front baffle. The woofer has a massive 2.5-lb magnet and features Thiel's traditional long-gap, short-coil construction to minimize magnetic nonlinearities. The electrical crossover is a two-way, first-order type, but still appears complex, to judge from the number of components used. These components are mounted behind the single pair of terminal posts. High-quality plastic-film capacitors and air-cored coils are used, and the internal wiring appears to be relatively small-gauge Kimber.