T.H.E. Show Report – Stereophile


I discovered a really great pairing of Merrill and Alta Audio. Michael Levy introduced me to the Alta Audio Celesta FRM—2 loudspeaker ($13,000 without stands). These are a two-way transmission-line design, and in this medium-sized room the bass was fantastic—I was told extending down to 29Hz. Amplification was the Merrill Audio Thor monoblocks ($4,800/pair). I can see why they got their name—these put out a whopping 400W into 4 ohms, running with balanced circuits. Completing the gear picture was the Antipodes DX Music Server 1TB SSD ($6500). This kind of firepower succeeded in making Norah Jones sound sexy at 9:30 in the morning. Cabling was also from Merrill Audio. Good stuff!


Stereophile stopped by our room at T.H.E. Show in Newport Beach, CA and loved our sound.

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T.H.E. Show Report –


So it was not surprising with such excellent gear that the Alta Audio Celesta FRM-2 speakers with matching stands ($13,999 and $1999 respectively) had smooth highs and they played some double bass jazz music for me. It sounded fast, clean and very responsive. The Alta Audio Celest FRM-2 use a very unique transmission line to deliver bass down 29 Hz (-3dB). Don’t let their size fool you, as there was plenty of bass filling the room. The custom ribbon tweeter, something i am becoming a huge fan of, produces exceptional upper frequencies. In fact the ribbon tweeters have a rated response up to 47kHz(!). Well done gentlemen and the Alta Audio / Merrill Audio room was one of my faves during T.H.E. Show Newport 2015.

Alta Audio displayed at T.H.E. Show in Newport Beach, CA with Merrill Audio. stopped by for a listen and they were thoroughly impressed by the the FRM-2s.

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Alta Audio Solo Review – Audiophilia


These bookshelf speakers are very special. As one of my friends commented, ‘They paint a lovely picture’. I couldn’t agree more. They impressed particularly because of their bass performance (no subwoofer needed) but they also yielded a detailed, smooth, full and transparent sound with a very nice sound stage and imaging. They were a pleasure to listen to even for long periods of time. I can’t imagine any audiophile not being impressed.

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Alta Audio Celesta FRM-2 Enjoy The Music Review


…with the Alta Audio $13,000 FRM-2 speakers, this is one of the few occasions where the performance was equal to the promise. If you were blindfolded, you could easily mistake their sound for a large full range multi-driver speaker. The Celesta speakers fulfill my most important requirements. The sound stage between the speakers in my room is unusually wide rock solid and dead centered. The driver’s horizontal dispersion is remarkable. The extension at both frequency extremes leaves nothing to the imagination. They are not cheap, yet certainly justify their cost. Bottom line, if I could afford them I would keep the Celesta FRM-2 speakers within my reference system.


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Alta Audio FRM-2 in Robb Report

Alta Audio’s FRM-2 monitor loudspeaker has been featured in the Robb Report.

Mike Levy, the lead designer for Alta Audio, has been building speakers for almost 35 years. His portfolio includes the company’s roughly 7-foot-tall, $200,000-per-pair Statement floor-standing loudspeakers—and many of that speaker’s technologies have been implemented in the new Alta Audio FRM-2 monitor speakers. Though considerably smaller, and priced at $13,000 per pair, the FRM-2s are packed with audio oomph.

Featuring a 6-inch woofer and Alta’s proprietary ribbon tweeter, the new speakers accurately deliver potent sonic responses from 29 Hz up to 47 kHz. And while the ultrahigh-gloss finish could be worthy of the finest cars at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, the beauty it provides is more than skin deep. Using a material that Alta calls DampHard, the speaker’s cabinet isolates the drivers from vibration and their external environment, giving the music reproduced by the FRM-2s a deep, uncanny silence that few speakers this size afford. In short, the FRM-2s redefine the high-performance monitor category.

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Tone Audio: Spectacular Speakers

The Alta Audio FRM-2s have been featured under Tone Audio’s selection of Spectacular Speakers.

Tone Audio Spectacular Speakers

FRM-2 Full Range Monitor
by Alta AudioFRM-2
Integration of ribbon tweeters represents a hurdle for some speaker designs. Will the Altas demonstrate the agility to overcome any obstacles in the listening room? Read about publisher Jeff Dorgay putting the FRM-2 through their paces.
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Alta Audio Celestia FRM-2 Tone Audio Review: Ribbon Perfection

Tone Audio featured a beautiful review of the Celestia FRM-2 in their magazine calling it the best melding of a ribbon tweeter to a midrange driver they’ve ever heard. Read the article in the magazine below.

Download the PDF file .

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Alta Audio FRM-2 in Tone Audio Magazine

Tone Audio Blurb

Previewing the FRM-2s in their magazine, Tone Audio is definitely impressed. Watch for a full review coming in their issue #67.

Thanks to a 3.1″ voice coil and massive motor, this modest sized driver produces prodigious bass, along with a speed that mates to the ribbon perfectly – making for the most seamless marriage we’ve yet heard between a ribbon and dynamic driver.

So far, everyone on the staff that has experienced them has been shocked at the realism they provide.

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QuotidianoAudio FRM-2 Review

Quotidiano Audio

(translated from italian)

The speakers are the best around, the cabinet is made of MDF and is covered with a material that is extremely hard to eliminate resonance.

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Customer Review – Karl Sigman

I have been privileged to have heard the FRM-1s numerous times and also to witness the remarkable/ingenious transformations that Mike pulled off (stubborn and brilliant as he is) resulting in the truly remarkable new FRM-2: I now own a pair myself as my reference speakers. Mike lent me a pair and after less than 2 weeks I knew they were going to stay put.
I could not believe a priori that a pair of 50-pound monitor size speakers containing only 2 drivers could (easily) best my pair of 4-driver floor standers. They not only beat the bass pants off them but yield a realism in sound quality (cello, piano, percussion, voice) that very few floor standers can compete with; and the imaging and soundstage is unreal. It is common for someone who visits my abode and hears my system (and feels the couch rumble when low bass is playing; check out Leonard Cohen’s ‘Waiting for the Miracle’) to say, ’so, your subwoofer is over there behind that cabinet, right?’ ‘Wrong,’ I say, and they scratch their head in disbelief.

– Karl Sigman

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