Dynaudio Special Forty
Stand-mount speakers (Grey Birch)
Our take on the Dynaudio Special Forty by Crutchfield's Kramer Crane
40 years of speaker excellence
Dynaudio is celebrating their 40th anniversary by paying homage to their music-loving roots. Their Special Forty stand-mount speakers reflect the company's passion for exceptionally natural, revealing sound by combining four decades of design expertise with impeccable craftsmanship. Like all of Dynaudio's top-shelf speakers, the Special Forties are proudly built and rigorously tested in Skanderborg, Denmark.
The Special Forties sport a real-wood birch veneer (shown individually with the magnetic grille removed).
Tried-and-true woofer design
The Special Forties use Dynaudio's famed Magnesium Silicate Polymer (MSP) cone material in each speaker's 6-11/16" woofer. This design is both lightweight and ultra-stiff — an ideal combination for fast, controlled movement.
Each MSP cone is molded in one geometrically perfect piece, which helps to optimize sound dispersion. It also eliminates the need for a separate dust cap, further enhancing the cone's structural integrity.
The Special Forties are ported to reinforce low-frequency output. A pair of included foam plugs can be inserted into the ports to optimize bass response when placing the speakers near a wall.
Ultra-smooth highs that fill the room
One thing I've come to expect from Dynaudio's high-end speakers is wall-to-wall sound with a huge soundstage and lifelike musical imaging. A big part of this can be attributed to their ultra-smooth tweeters.
The Special Forties use a variation of the company's specially coated, 1-1/8" soft dome tweeter called the Esotar Forty. This new twist on a classic design allows for effortlessly detailed, neutral, and non-fatiguing sound— even when you crank up the volume.
Are these speakers right for you?
The Special Forties can deliver truly incredible sound — in the right setup. That means you'll need high-current amplification; 100-200 watts of power from a quality power amp or integrated amplifier.
Proper speaker placement is also crucial to getting the best performance out of the Special Forties. As these are considered "stand-mount" speakers (and not bookshelf speakers), placing them on a pair of heavy-duty stands helps eliminate unwanted vibrations and reflections. Speaker stands also allow you to properly position the speakers within your room to create a listening "sweet spot." Read my article on stereo speaker placement for positioning and set-up tips.
If you'd like personalized advice on matching these speakers with an amp, give one of our advisors a shout for a free expert recommendation.
Add a sub for better bass
If you love hard-hitting thump with your music, consider adding a powered sub to complement the Special Forties. This doesn't mean you need to blast your room with bass, but it does give you that extra bit of low-frequency impact that helps re-create the live show experience. My powered subwoofer buying guide has tips on choosing the right one for your room and taste in bass.
Product Highlights (each):
- special edition 40th anniversary stand-mount speakers
- 1-1/8" Esotar Forty soft dome tweeter
- 6-11/16" MSP (Magnesium Silicate Polymer) cone woofer
- sophisticated hybrid magnet system for low distortion and high-power output
- frequency response: 41-23,000 Hz (±3dB)
- maximum amplifier power: 200 watts
- high-current amplification required; contact a Crutchfield advisor for free personalized advice on choosing the right amp for your speakers
- impedance: 6 ohms
- sensitivity: 86 dB
- advanced crossover for ultra-smooth signal distribution
- bass-reflex (ported) cabinet with rear-firing port
- includes a foam port plug for adjusting the speaker's low-frequency performance
- extensive internal bracing to reduce resonance
- gold-plated binding post speaker terminals
- removable magnetic grille
- 7-13/16"W x 14-1/4"H x 12-3/4"D (with feet and grille)
- weight: 17.9 lbs.
- designed, engineered, and assembled in Denmark
- warranty: 5 years (8 years with registration)
- Our 60-day money-back guarantee
What's in the Box:
- 2 Bookshelf loudspeakers
- 2 Grilles
- 2 Foam port plugs
- Quick Start Guide
- Warranty Extension Card
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Features and Specs
|Tweeter Size (inches)||1.1|
|Midrange Size (inches)||N/A|
|Woofer Size (inches)||6.687|
|Woofer Composition||Magnesium Silicate Polymer|
|Frequency Response||41-23k Hz|
|Mounting Bracket Included||No|
|Recommended Stand Height (inches)||22-26|
|Parts Warranty||5Yr (8Yr registered)|
|Labor Warranty||5Yr (8Yr registered)|
Esotar Forty Tweeter: The Special Forty uses a unique DSR (Dynaudio Secret Recipe) precision-coated 1.1" soft-dome tweeter that offers increased airflow, lower resonant frequency, and minimal distortion for true, natural, and transparent sound. Exclusive to the Special Forty is a new pressure conduit or shaped vent in the back of the magnet system that allows more space in the rear chamber. That space is packed with damping material and reduces back-pressure, while the shape itself optimizes airflow coming backwards from the rear of the dome. The tweeter's aero-coupled pressure-release system sits underneath the voice-coil and reduces unwanted pressure build-up that could affect its movement. Stopping those pockets of air from forming reduces resonance, and less resonance equals even greater potential for detail.
Magnesium Silicate Polymer (MSP) Woofer w/ AirFlow Basket: The Special Forty uses Dynaudio's proprietary MSP (Magnesium Silicate Polymer) material for its 6.6875" midbass driver. MSP delivers precisely the right combination of rigidity, damping and stability for the most faithful sound reproduction. The cone itself uses a painstakingly developed symmetrical excursion for even better midrange performance. Behind it sits a new Nomex spider - the "suspension" for the voice-coil. It enables for even more symmetry in the driver's excursion - and makes it possible not only to pick out individual parts in a piece of music, but even individual instruments in an orchestra. And, like all our other MSP cones, it's a one-piece design. This gives it an incredibly solid connection to the voice-coil, as well as stabilizing its form. It all sits in Dynaudio's special AirFlow Basket that reduces internal reflections and increases air movement, while retaining its stiffness and stability.
High-Quality st1 Order Crossover: The Special Forty utilizes classic Dynaudio first-order crossover techniques, phase alignment, and impedance alignment technologies for a smooth, unnoticeable transition of audio frequencies between woofer and tweeter.
Furniture Grade Cabinets: Dynaudio's high-quality, furniture-grade cabinets are painstakingly assembled and finished by experts in Skanderborg Denmark to make sure the enclosure perfectly matches the custom drivers. The Danish tradition of craftsmanship drives the meticulous process of selecting and matching veneers from the finest woods available, followed by careful sanding, polishing and coating. The front-baffle is manufactured using CNC (Computerized Numerical Control) machining. Computer-programmed and controlled by ultra-responsive sensors, precision to within a single micrometer (ìm), multi-axial drilling machines produce the acoustically optimized baffle shape and unique design details. Additional internal damping, strengthening, and bracing in critical sections of the cabinet substantially reduce unwanted resonance. The speaker cabinet also features a magnetically-attached, acoustically-optimized front grille.
Bass Reflex Port w/ Foam Port Plug: The Special Forty bookshelf speaker features a bass reflex enclosure with a rear-firing port for greater efficiency and bigger bass response. To minimize low frequency reflections, which will be heard as a thickening of the sound, the loudspeaker can be adapted to the room's acoustic character by using the included foam plug in the bass reflex port. This will essentially attenuate the room induced boost in the low frequency range by dampening the deep frequencies, yielding a more clear and tight sound when the loudspeaker is positioned near rear walls.
Heavy-Duty, Gold-Plated Binding Post: The Dynaudio Special Forty bookshelf loudspeaker is outfitted with a set of heavy-duty, gold-plated binding post terminals for secure connectivity and excellent signal transfer. The binding posts will accept bare wire (up to 10AWG), pin-connectors, and banana plugs (single only).
Mounting Options: The Dynaudio Special Forty bookshelf loudspeakers are designed to be placed on a speaker stand, shelf, table, or other piece of furniture with a solid flat-surface. The Special Forty can be wall-mounted using a proprietary bracket from Dynaudio (sold separately - see Accessories Tab)
Placement Recommendations: The Dynaudio Special Forty consist of classic bass reflex loudspeaker design with no unusual or extraordinary positioning demands. Every room will still have its own particular sound characteristics. Any room is also shaped and decorated uniquely, and therefore remains independent regarding options for positioning loudspeakers.
- The distance between each loudspeaker and your listening position should be the same; try to achieve an isosceles triangle. The distance between the loudspeakers should be the same or slightly less than the distance between each loudspeakers and your listening position. The closer the listening position is in relation to the loudspeakers, the closer the speakers can be positioned to each other.
- As a starting point, it is recommended that the speakers be about 6.5' apart from each other for the best results. To minimize potential influences from the back and side wall boundaries, it is recommended that the distance from the speakers to each is at least 1.625', and ideally the distance from each speaker to the back and side wall should not be equal.
- Depending on your personal listening environment and room dimensions, the loudspeakers may be angled in towards the listening area to focus the sound radiation; this positioning will typically improve imaging.
Dynaudio Fine Tuning: Every Dynaudio speaker model is fine-tuned in extensive, time-consuming listening tests. Dynaudio even developed its own amplifier, the Arbiter, solely for this task, to ensure that they are not restricted by any one manufacturer's design. Extraordinary power reserves, a frequency bandwidth at the edge of what is technically possible, the exacting use of absolutely sonically accurate components and circuits, and a unique power supply that remains completely free from mains noise are just a few qualities of Dynaudio's ultimate amplifier development. The true sound quality of a loudspeaker can be judged using this virtually priceless reference amplifier. After a Dynaudio design has been fine-tuned, it is subjected to the Arbiter. Only after passing this most difficult test is it ensured that the authentic sound quality of a Dynaudio loudspeaker can be experienced at home.
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