The ADAM S3H is a horizontally oriented, 3-way midfield monitor with 50W S-ART tweeter; 300W hybrid midrange driver; dual 7" HexaCone drivers, each with a 500-watt PWM amplifier; linear frequency response of 30Hz to 50kHz; and custom DSP for studio integration.
Built for the needs of engineers and producers whose deliverables must not only compete but also excel at the highest levels of audio production, the horizontally oriented ADAM S3H features technological innovations that will put you on top of your game. A 3-way, 1350-watt active monitor designed for midfield use in control rooms where real estate abounds, the S3H can also be used in mid-size and smaller rooms since its dual-woofer design provides bass extension down to 30Hz without need for a space-eating subwoofer. Another advantage of the dual 7" woofers, apart from the increased surface area for long low-frequency wavelengths, is that their smaller dimensions allow for greater efficiency. In essence, each driver, powered by its own 500W Class D amp requires less power to overcome the inertia of a much larger driver, which also benefits dynamic response. Heading up the S3H’s frequency response curve, you’ll encounter a recently developed 4" dome/cone hybrid (DCH™) midrange driver that oversees the spectrum from 250Hz to 3kHz, above which, the rarified high-frequency domain up to 50kHz is ruled by ADAM’s S-ART folded ribbon tweeter. These and other innovative, leading-edge technologies from the minds of ADAM engineers are responsible for the S3H’s beautifully transparent, three-dimensional soundstage, with a sweet spot that stays with you as you move along the console. If you’re competing at the highest levels of music, broadcast, or film, give yourself the edge with ADAM’s S3H.
ADAM Audio S3H key features and tech:
- Handmade precision S-ART tweeter with high-frequency propagation system (HPS) waveguide
- Dual 7" Extended Linear Excursion (ELE) low-frequency drivers
- Ground-breaking Symmetrical Magnet Assembly (SMA)
- 4"dome/cone hybrid (carbon composite)
- Custom amplifiers, 1350W total power
- Frequency Response: 30Hz-50kHz
- SPL 126dB per pair
- Custom DSP for studio integration
- Aerodynamically designed bass reflex ports
- Robust and practical cabinet design
- AES3 digital inputs and various expansion options
ADAM Audio S3H—Behind the Grille
All monitors in ADAM’s S-series feature the latest iteration of ADAM’s world-famous X-ART tweeter design, handmade in Berlin. The manufacturing process for each tweeter has been raised to an even higher standard of precision, with a more stringent post-factory testing regime—hence the new designation, “S-ART.” The driver’s precise transient response and its ability to reproduce the subtlest high-end detail, distortion-free, and with natural-sounding dynamics, is the foundation of ADAM Audio’s worldwide reputation as a leading manufacturer of audio equipment.
The HPS (High-frequency Propagation System) waveguide is designed for the S-ART tweeter with the aid of the latest computer modeling techniques. It refines the dispersion of the speakers to an even, uniform consistency, with a broad horizontal axis and tightly focused in the vertical plane. This minimizes potentially distracting reflections from the horizontal surfaces of studio furniture, such as mixing consoles, ensuring that imaging remains constant, creating a large, stable sweet spot, even at high output levels.
Extended Linear Excursion (ELE) low-frequency driver
Bass frequencies from 30Hz to 250Hz are handled by ADAM Audio’s entirely new 7" low-frequency HexaCone driver—well, two of them to be precise—which incorporates the company’s equally groundbreaking Symmetrical Magnet Assembly (SMA), delivering a powerful and extremely accurate low end extending down into the sub-bass region. Since both drivers handle bass frequencies, their combined surface area is greater than that of a 10" woofer, while their smaller size enables far more efficient dynamic response (less inertia to overcome).
The S Series ELE bass driver (short for Extended Linear Excursion) is a custom design created especially for and in parallel with the S Series cabinet and bass-reflex system. It guarantees accurate audio reproduction at an extremely high-resolution thanks to the precise relationship between its low weight, optimized inner damping, highly rigid honeycomb cone, and a basket that eliminates unwanted resonance and distortion. The result is a bass driver that offers clarity and transparency uncommon in low-frequency audio reproduction, plus great precision even at high sound pressure levels.
Another notable feature of the ELE driver is its mechanical suspension, which operates optimally over long excursions, allowing high-SPL bass frequencies to be reproduced without distortion. Low-frequency energy is not limited as it is on similar systems. Softer, less highly tensioned driver suspensions may allow uncontrolled displacement at high SPL. The highly tensioned linear S-series suspension system dampens the movements of the supporting membrane in a controlled manner, even at high output levels, fully preserving the dynamics of the original audio. The suspension is extremely robust and ensures distortion-free reproduction across the entire audible spectrum.
The newly created long-throw speaker surround was also carefully engineered to be considerably more resilient than competing modern designs. This greatly increases the maximum possible excursion of the driver membrane, improving dynamic range and reducing distortion.
Finally, the loudspeaker basket is anodized by means of a specially optimized process during manufacture: the material’s black finish absorbs heat and provides another means by which the driver is kept cool, which in turn preserves its integrity and lifespan.
SMA™ (Symmetrical Magnet Assembly)
The newly developed magnet assembly in the bass driver, which ADAM Audio has named the SMA (Symmetrical Magnet Assembly), extends the maximum possible excursion of the electromagnetic voice coil by a factor of three compared to previous designs. The greatly extended travel ensures that the membrane operates in a linear fashion over a relatively large distance, displaces a greater volume of air, and is capable of higher maximum output. The design allows the driver to accurately reproduce low-frequency signals without distortion, even during extremely large excursions.
As voice coils warm, their resistance changes, damping and dynamic range are reduced, operational parameters change, and low frequencies are no longer reproduced cleanly. These unwanted effects are eliminated by an ingenious built-in ventilation system that prevents warming of the large, custom-designed voice coils, thus reducing the effects of power compression below the threshold of audibility.
The carefully engineered construction makes use of materials designed to encourage heat dissipation, and also keeps unwanted air turbulence and compression out of the magnet assembly, minimizing distortion.
The SMA also features several other innovations developed by ADAM Audio especially for the S Series that minimize non-linear third-order distortion.
DCH™ (Dome/Cone Hybrid) midrange driver
The 4" (100 mm) DCH (Dome/Cone Hybrid) midrange driver is another new technology designed specifically for the S Series. It’s a hybrid design: part cone and part dome driver. This extremely rigid one-piece drive element combines the clean decay characteristics and linear frequency response of a dome driver with the high-excursion advantages of a cone driver, audibly improving transparency in the critical mid-range and producing excellent, distortion-free reproduction at high output levels. In conjunction with the high-quality S Series suspension, which controls large-scale excursions perfectly, wobble is completely excluded. In addition, the DCH’s output extends down an octave further than competing mid-range drivers (as far as 200 Hz), ensuring a clean and consistent dispersion without tonal coloration.
The DCH is manufactured with a specially laminated carbon composite material, while its domed form renders it very stable. It behaves as a piston up to 8kHz (one-and-a-half octaves beyond its operational frequency response), does not produce unwanted vibrations, and does not deform even at high output levels. Unwanted ringing and resonances that obscure sonic detail and produce listening fatigue are almost completely eliminated.
The robust construction of the DCH midrange driver also allows it to be placed nearer to the S-ART treble driver. Much like a point-source monitor, the pair act as a coherent sound source making overall dispersion wider, more consistent, and more accurate. Several features resembling those from the ELE bass driver also appear on the DCH, such as the linear magnet assembly, suspension, damping systems, vented pole piece, heat-dissipating chassis/basket, and the large 2-1/2" (65 mm) voice coil. There are a few differences: for instance, the mid-range driver surround is manufactured from a specially formulated foam material, but just like low-frequency driver, fine, highly dynamic details are reproduced without coloration or filtering.
The low-frequency and midrange drivers on the S Series are powered by distortion-free Class-D ICEpower amplifiers (ICEpower is a subsidiary of Bang & Olufsen). Over 90 percent efficient, these designs are much more robust and offer a longer working life than traditional Class A/B amplification. However, Class A/B can offer more bandwidth and tonal advantages when amplifying high-frequency audio. For this reason, ADAM has developed a special 50W, low-noise Class A/B power amp, which operates in a linear fashion up to 300kHz, to drive the tweeter. A signal that’s -3dB at 25kHz can cause a -50° phase shift in the audible spectrum (appearing at 10kHz), whereas -3dB at 250Hz reduces the in-band phase shift to less than 1°. The linear response of the amplifier up to 300kHz in concert with the S-ART ribbon tweeter is responsible for the stunning spatial accuracy, transient detail, and significantly greater overall program reality of the S3H.
The S-series custom-designed DSP provides perfectly tuned crossovers that guarantee optimal frequency response, as well as a dynamic range greater than that offered by traditional analog crossovers with no loss of resolution.
The DSP also includes a comprehensive array of options for in-room optimization. A rear-panel OLED display and dual-function pushbutton/rotary encoder allow control over overall level, two parametric shelving filters (one for the bass, the other for the highs) as well as six fully parametric EQs with variable Q that may be assigned to boost or cut level at specific frequencies.
Five memories are also provided to store voicing presets. The first is the default tuning, labeled “Pure,” featuring an extremely accurate frequency response. The second is a dynamic, natural-sounding response curve of ADAM’s own design, which is known as UNR™ (the Uniform Natural Response). The third preset on the S3H is an option designed to emulate the sound of what is possibly ADAM’s best-known monitor, the highly regarded S3A. These three presets are non-editable. However, the final two memory locations are available for user-editable presets.
The DSP also offers limiter-based protection, AES3 digital inputs, and connectors for future expansion options. A USB connector allows software upgrades and facilitates connection to computer-based editing software, so that voicing adjustments or preset selection can be carried out without the need to access the rear panel of your monitors – a useful option if they are soffit-mounted.
The S Series bass reflex tubes
The bass reflex ports have been aerodynamically redesigned with optimal rounding to minimize signal loss and coloration due to air friction and turbulence. They incorporate additional anti-resonance technology in their port designs to keep pipe-related tonal coloration to a minimum.
S Series cabinets
While the commanding appearance and robust construction of the S Series cabinets reflect ADAM’s foundation in industrial engineering, the aesthetics are rooted in practical considerations. The cabinets are solidly constructed from thick, vibration-resistant material to reduce unwanted resonance and coloration, even at high listening levels. The design also features large-radius rounded edges, which help to minimize unwanted edge-diffraction effects that would otherwise negatively combine with the direct sound. The robust finish affords the speakers extra protection from the stresses and strains (or stains) of daily life in a recording studio.
ADAM Audio S3H features/benefits:
S-ART tweeter, handmade in Berlin and manufactured to the tightest tolerances in ADAM Audio’s history
- Allows longer operation with less fatigue
- Breakup is prevented by the folded diaphragm, distortion is effectively reduced to a minimum
- Wide dynamic range due to an acoustically effective surface area 2.5 times that of a classic tweeter (according to the piston principle)
Air velocity ratio of 4:1 during the sound generation by folded S-ART membrane
- Direct, fast response in the high-end even with complex transients
Newly designed HPS waveguide, milled from a solid block of aluminum
- Makes dispersion more consistent, imaging more stable over a wider area
- Reduction of early reflections on surfaces such as mixing consoles, studio furniture, etc.
New midrange driver with one-piece hybrid dome/cone (DCH) design
- Offers the sonic advantages of both driver types, with minimal partial resonances
- Excellent mid-range dispersion characteristics due to improved integration with the treble driver
Custom-built Extended Linear Excursion (ELE) bass driver
- Accurate, extremely high-resolution audio reproduction thanks to a precise relationship between its low weight, optimized inner damping, and highly rigid HexaCone membrane, in conjunction with a basket developed to eliminate unwanted resonance and distortion
Custom-designed Symmetrical Magnet Assembly (SMA)
- Allows the voice coil a maximum excursion three times greater than that offered by previous designs, with an extended, symmetrical magnetic field ensuring linear, low-distortion operation
- Power compression effects are prevented by an intelligent self-cooling system
Horizontal 3-way system with 2 x 7" woofers and 1 x 4" DCH midrange
- Very high resolution of the stereo image
Spacious bass reflex ports on the front
- Bass reproduction with very low compression
- Allows positioning close to walls
Highly efficient PWM ICEpower amplifier for the woofer and midrange driver coupled with an A/B amplifier for S-ART tweeter
- Low-distortion amplification at both low and high volume levels
Linear frequency response of 30Hz to 50kHz
- Accurate, un-hyped reproduction across a wide frequency band
Maximum peak sound pressure per pair in 1 m ≥ 124dB
- Powerful, compression-free sound reproduction even at very high levels
Custom DSP engine
- Perfect crossovers for optimal frequency response and maximum dynamic range
- EQ options and presets for in-room optimization
- Limiter-based amp protection, AES3 digital inputs and board connectors for future expansion options, USB connector for software upgrades and computer-based control
Analog XLR input
- Optimized for balanced line signals
Acoustically optimized and robust cabinet construction
- Reduction of susceptibility to vibrations and unwanted edge-diffraction effect
2-year warranty with an optional extension to 3 years with the registration of the product
- Full repair service if required for 5 years
If your livelihood depends on the quality of your monitors, you can rely on the quality of ADAM S3H monitors. To integrate an ADAM S3H system in your studio, call or chat online with your PAD Professional today.