NextLevel Acoustics Reference Cinema Speakers Review [VIDEO]

Manufacturer & Model
NextLevel Acoustics Reference Cinema Speakers
Link
https://nextlevelacoustics.com/product/reference-cinema/#1653587409629-0dccc74f-7d92
Highlights
Precision imaging. Quick, hard-hitting dynamics. Can be installed in- or on-wall.
Summary
If you're looking for cinema-style performance but don't have the space for bulky MTM speakers, the NextLevel Reference Cinema Speakers should be at the top of your list. Rivaling much more expensive models that monopolize much more of your square footage, the Referece Cinema series visually disappear into your room while creating a soundstage that is not bound by walls.
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Speakers can make or break a home theater system, and their performance can be dictated by everything else in your room, including the room itself.



NextLevel Acoustics has been around for awhile now, based out of New England, and they’re mainly known for their high-end sound bar offerings. But the company makes a full product line - over 40 different speaker solutions - including bookshelves, in-walls, in-ceilings, and subs, and they’ve recently added the Reference Cinema series to the list, which can be configured as an in-wall or on-wall speaker. Like the rest of the product line, the Reference Cinemas are designed by industry veteran John Sollecito, who is well-known for his Infinite Slope crossover technology and audiophile-grade speaker designs.

The NextLevel Acoustics Reference Cinema line of speakers is a high-quality, great sounding speaker that fills a void in the market. It’s a cinema-style, MTM horn speaker that doesn’t carry with it a huge space requirement, or a huge price tag. I tried and failed to find another speaker of this design with 8-inch drivers, or an in-wall / on-wall form factor.

For more details on my measurements and evaluation, watch the video below!





NextLevel Acoustics Reference Cinema Speakers

  • Woofers: 2x8" Carbon Wool
  • Tweeter: 4x4" Horn
  • Recommended Amp Power: 70-500w
  • Frequency Response: 50Hz-20kHz
  • Impedance: 4 ohms
  • Sensitivity: 96db (1 watt/1 meter)
  • Max SPL: 118db @ 2m

 

Todd Anderson

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Great review, Travis. Interesting that you felt the NLAs helped to tame some of the harsher sounding mixes (like Point Break). That’s not always easy to do.

I wonder if some of that resulted from a fresh calibration with your Anthem?
 

thrillcat

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They still have those?
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Great review, Travis. Interesting that you felt the NLAs helped to tame some of the harsher sounding mixes (like Point Break). That’s not always easy to do.

I wonder if some of that resulted from a fresh calibration with your Anthem?
It was definitely thanks to the Anthem. But the biggest difference is that the NLAs were much more easily correctable and fine tuneable, whereas the Triads had a very difficult time making any corrections without shrinking the entire soundstage - it was always all or nothing.
Definitely not the NLAs making Point Break sound better per se, but the NLAs being more amenable to room correction.
 

Todd Anderson

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Preamp, Processor or Receiver
StormAudio ISP.24 MK2
Main Amp
Emotiva XPA-5
Additional Amp
Emotiva XPA Gen3 2.8 multichannel amp
Other Amp
Denon X8500H
Computer Audio
AudioEngine A2+
DAC
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Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
Kaleidescape TERRA, OPPO UDP-203, Panasonic UB9000
Front Speakers
GoldenEar Technology Triton One.R
Center Channel Speaker
GoldenEar Technology SuperCenter Reference
Surround Speakers
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Surround Back Speakers
SVS Ultra Bookshelf
Front Height Speakers
SVS Prime Elevation x4 (Top Front, Top Mid-Front)
Rear Height Speakers
SVS Prime Elevation x4 (Top Middle, Top Rear)
Subwoofers
dual SVS SB16s + dual PSA XS30s
Other Speakers or Equipment
Behringer 1124p; Aura Bass Shaker Pros; SuperSub X
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Screen
Seymour Screen Excellence, Enlightor NEO AT Screen
Streaming Equipment
iFi Audio Zen Blue
Streaming Subscriptions
Qobuz, TIDAL, Spotify, ROON
Other Equipment
LG Electronics 65-inch B6 OLED, Sony 65-inch X900F, ZeroSurge 8R15W x 2, ZeroSurge 2R15W x 2
Interesting. I love the look and form factor. Were these demoed at Cedia?
 

thrillcat

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Center Channel Speaker
NextLevel Acoustics Reference Cinema
Surround Speakers
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Other Speakers or Equipment
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Video Display Device
JVC DLA X790R, Samsung & Sony 4K panels
Screen
SeymourAV Proscenium 124” diagonal 2.40:1
Remote Control
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Streaming Equipment
Kaleidescape Strato C/Compact Terra, PLEX Server, AppleTV4K, Bluesound Node2i
Streaming Subscriptions
AppleTV+, Netflix, Amazon Prime, HBO Max, YouTubeTV
Satellite System
They still have those?
Other Equipment
xxxxxx TBA Turntable (2-channel system), Hana EL cart, Cambridge Audio Phono Stage, B&K Preamp
Interesting. I love the look and form factor. Were these demoed at Cedia?
Yes, they were in the HiSense booth with a UST, Kaleidescape and a Trinnov processor.
 

Sonnie

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Fabulous review Travis... really enjoyed it... and it sounds like you enjoyed these speakers so much you are keeping them. Congrats!

I never thought I would EVER find anyone else that owned the Delicate Sound of Thunder on LASERDISC... lol. I thought surely I was the only one that ever owned it. We used to watch that regularly. I was glad to finally see the new release... much needed, especially since we no longer have the laserdisc player or S-Video.

Love the video review presentation... very professional. You guys are going to kill it wth these. :T
 

thrillcat

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Jolida JD202BRC (2-channel system)
Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
Sony UBP-X800
Front Speakers
NextLevel Acoustics Reference Cinema
Center Channel Speaker
NextLevel Acoustics Reference Cinema
Surround Speakers
NextLevel Acoustics Reference Cinema
Subwoofers
SVS PB2000
Other Speakers or Equipment
Bang & Olufsen BeoLab 8000
Video Display Device
JVC DLA X790R, Samsung & Sony 4K panels
Screen
SeymourAV Proscenium 124” diagonal 2.40:1
Remote Control
Harmony Elite
Streaming Equipment
Kaleidescape Strato C/Compact Terra, PLEX Server, AppleTV4K, Bluesound Node2i
Streaming Subscriptions
AppleTV+, Netflix, Amazon Prime, HBO Max, YouTubeTV
Satellite System
They still have those?
Other Equipment
xxxxxx TBA Turntable (2-channel system), Hana EL cart, Cambridge Audio Phono Stage, B&K Preamp
Fabulous review Travis... really enjoyed it... and it sounds like you enjoyed these speakers so much you are keeping them. Congrats!

I never thought I would EVER find anyone else that owned the Delicate Sound of Thunder on LASERDISC... lol. I thought surely I was the only one that ever owned it. We used to watch that regularly. I was glad to finally see the new release... much needed, especially since we no longer have the laserdisc player or S-Video.

Love the video review presentation... very professional. You guys are going to kill it wth these. :T
Thanks Sonnie!

An old friend of mine turned me on to that Pink Floyd show when I was in college. He had the LaserDisc, and I had him record it to an SVHS so I could watch it. Then when I could finally afford a LaserDisc player I had to search and search for a copy of the Pink Floyd disc. Finally found one on a newsgroup where you messaged the store, they mailed you a copied inventory/price sheet, and then you could mail them a check to place an order. Picked that and a couple great ELO discs on that order.
 

Sonnie

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Monolith HTP-1 Processor (Movies and Surround)
Main Amp
Sanders Sound System Magtech (Dual Amps)
Additional Amp
Emotiva XPA-Eleven
Computer Audio
Intel NUC w/ Roon ROCK
DAC
miniDSP SHD (Two-Channel Music Only)
Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
Panasonic UB9000 4K UHD Player (for media discs)
Front Speakers
MartinLogan Renaissance ESL 15A
Center Channel Speaker
MartinLogan Focus C-18
Surround Speakers
MartinLogan EFX Surrounds
Surround Back Speakers
MartinLogan ElectroMotion ESL
Front Height Speakers
MartinLogan EM-IC
Rear Height Speakers
MartinLogan EM-IC
Subwoofers
SVS SB16-Ultra x4 (music) + PB16-Ultra x2 (movies)
Other Speakers or Equipment
VTI Amp Stands for the Magtechs
Video Display Device
JVC DLA-NX9
Screen
Elite 128" Screen
Remote Control
Universal MX-890
Streaming Equipment
Roku Ultra
Streaming Subscriptions
Lifetime Roon Subscription
Tidal
qobuz
Netflix
Amazon Prime
Satellite System
Dish Joey 4K
Other Equipment
Salamander Synergy Equipment Stand
We had a stack of laserdisc back in the day. I think we still have them somewhere here at the house.

I'm tripping out at these video reviews... very cool.
 
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