PS15 Surpassed By P15 — AV.technology
New 15” point source cabinet, with L18 companion sub, from NEXO completes the P+ series and takes on the mantle of cabinet great the PS15
25 years after the launch of the PS15, the ubiquitous 15” point source cabinet, NEXO unveils the P15, its new top-of-the-range 2-way passive/active speaker which offers a compelling combination of heritage and contemporary design engineering. This model completes the P+ Series, a range of powerful compact speakers which offer meaningful advantages of scalability, compatibility and performance to multiple market sectors, many of which are currently adapting to new operational models.
“The versatility of the P+ Series is especially relevant at this time,” comments Gareth Collyer, NEXO’s Sales & Marketing Director. “As venues and production companies have to redefine indoor and outdoor audience areas to accommodate social distancing, the portable power and interchangeability of the P+ Series cabinets is very useful. The P15 is the ideal multipurpose audio product for theatres, cultural venues and sportsgrounds, extending their ability to handle different repertoires of performance and events.”
The P15 is an extremely powerful 15” coaxial loudspeaker, designed for FOH and monitoring applications, which can be used with or without its companion subbass, the new L18. It offers modular directivity that can quickly and easily changed by the user.
The P15 features all the hallmarks of NEXO’s new P+ Series point source category, as seen in the P8, P10 and P12 models launched within the last 15 months. The curvilinear enclosures of custom birch and poplar plywood are unique to the P+ Series, the bent wood delivering significant progress in terms of robust lightweight cabinets. The new P15 weighs in at 23kg and is dimensioned at 600 x 483 x 352 mm (compared to the previous generation PS15 at 33kg for 675 x 434 x 368 mm). The most impressive step forward is in sonic performance, with the P15 delivering 139 dB (Passive) to 141 dB (Active) SPL from its purpose-designed 15” Neodymium magnet coaxial driver with a 3.5” voicecoil. Frequency response is 57Hz-20kHz.
“This has been the most challenging of assignments for our R&D team,” comments François Deffarges from NEXO, “how to design a successor to a product that is still in our warehouse, still sells in large numbers and still routinely wins shootouts. Most audio engineers have had their hands on NEXO PS15s at some point in their career, so this is one of the most anticipated launches in our 40-year history.”
According to NEXO’s Director of R&D, Joseph Carcopino, NEXO has received valuable feedback from the market in the first year of the P+ Series family of products. “We have evolved the design of our components since the launch of the P12, optimising the cone and voicecoil to provide the perfect balance between power and weight, even achieving an extension of the frequency response in the low end. Bass-reflex tuning is done through two specially-designed shaped ports which guarantees ultra-low distortion, even at very high levels.”
The P15 is so versatile that it can transform inventory. Unusually in this 15” category, the P15 can be reconfigured from Passive to Active mode using a switch on the back of the cabinet, taking SPL output from 139dB to 141dB (peak). It has variable directivities: horn flanges can be interchanged from the 60°x 60° provided as standard to a 90°x 40° or an asymmetrical 50°- 100°x 40°. (The interchangeable flanges are marketed as accessories.) Switching between different directivities is achieved by removing the steel grille and replacing the flare, which uses a magnetic fixing.
The ergonomic design of the P15 includes large comfortable handles on each side, which hold a 35mm pole-mount fitting with Speakon connector and threaded inserts for connection of mounting accessories. The back plate holds two more Speakon connectors, and the recessed switch to change the cabinet from passive to active mode. (The Installation version of the P15 is passive only, with a cable gland for a 2 core cable for audio input, ensuring IP54 protection.) The P15 can be used on a pole-mount with the L18 subbass cabinet, wall-mounted or flown in landscape mode beneath a L18 enclosure, using a specially-designed yoke bracket.
L18 COMPACT SUB
The companion sub for the P15 is the new L18, a compact horn-loaded subbass model with high-excursion 18” woofer. It matches the efficiencies of the P15, offering an extremely high output level (140dB Peak) and an impressive power:weight ratio.
Built around a custom-made 15mm bent plywood shell, the L18 is robust yet weighs in at just 50kg. “The 18” Neodymium transducer with 4.5” voice coil offers extreme stiffness and a very high displacement capacity,” explains Joseph Carcopino. “The low-frequency horn ensures the maximum radiating surface, and high efficiency.”
Like all NEXO subs, the L18 is scalable, so it can be used with the smaller P12 point source cabinet. It shares the same range of accessories with other models in the P+ Series, making it an attractive option for inventory-holding rental companies. With the ability to fly one or two L18s above a P15 cabinet, this combination represents a cost-effective alternative to a small line array configuration in, for example, a theatre installation.
Just like its P15 companion main speaker, the L18 precisely matches the output power of the NXAMP4x2mk2 controller amplifier. New processing algorithms optimise the match between the L18 maximum excursion with the NXAMP4x2mk2 output voltage capacity, producing highly dynamic sound without triggering the thermal limit of the driver. The NXAMP4x2mk2 also offers a dedicated minimum latency set-up, compatible with the monitor set-ups on the P15. Used together, the result is a very efficient drum-fill system in a compact footprint.
P15 and L18 are available in black and white structural paint finishes, (all other RAL colours by request) and in Installation and Touring versions.