APS Aeon Powered Monitors
APS is a small, focused company, manufacturing in Poland. Its business is monitors and studio interconnects.
The Aeon monitors are the company's first serious model and, as such, aren't part of a broader range. However, there is a smaller model, the iO, that's based on the Aeon.
At 42cm high, the Aeon is a big monitor that's suitable for both near- and mid-field applications. It has a 2-way front-ported design with twin amplification (150 Watts and 70 Watts) driving an 8-inch woofer and 1-inch tweeter. You can choose between fabric and titanium dome tweeters (we tested the fabric one).
Additional features include variable input sensitivity and bass/tweeter level controls (all notched). The input connector is a combined XLR/TRS design and there's also a loop through XLR output. The driver units are also magnetically shield as standard.
The front panel is uncluttered, although there is a two-colour backlit APS badge that indicates operation (blue) and amplifier clipping (red).
The monitors use driver units from Norwegian company SEAS and the crossover (at 1.5kHz) uses Burr-Brown op amps. Finally, there are also twin optical limiters and thermal protection to help prevent any mishaps.
Out of the box these are seriously weighty monitors (18kg apiece), with the amp power transformer and solid MDF cabinet contributing considerably to this bulk. Visually, their scale and mid-positioned reflex ports are reminiscent of Quested's original S8 (their new S8R looks slightly different). However, the Aeon has a more classy satin finish, and you can also choose from a number of different colours.
On first power up and with all trim settings flat, first impressions are of a clear monitor-style flat sound. There's certainly excellent mid-range accuracy, and for a moment you don't really notice that these are mid field monitors.
However, pushing the overall level reveals plenty of power. With flat settings, the bass doesn't feel excessive and this makes you wonder why there are so many bass level cut options (up to -15dB for the bass).
The fabric tweeter version should offer a more natural top end, but on first listening we felt the top end maybe needed a little extra (we tweaked up the rear-panel control by 0.5dB).
Driver choice for this size of monitor often results in a lower crossover point (here it's 1.5kHz) and this should improve imaging. In fact, we actually feel that the Aeon is a little sensitive to seating position. Even so, this doesn't detract that much from our overall impression, which is very positive indeed.
These are clearly very accurate monitors and a great option for mixing or programming. They're not cheap, but nor are they overpriced.
Good solid construction. Attractive introductory price point. Neutral sound.
A little sensitive to seating position.
APS has opened its account with a ﬁne set of mid-ﬁeld monitors.
All MusicRadar's reviews are by independent product specialists, who are not aligned to any gear manufacturer or retailer. Our experts also write for renowned magazines such as Guitarist, Total Guitar, Computer Music, Future Music and Rhythm. All are part of Future PLC, the biggest publisher of music making magazines in the world.