The Quad ESL 63 is another legendary classic made by the prestigious HiFi brand Quad, it is a pair of full-range electrostatic speakers that have gathered plenty of accolades over the years and has a unique way of delivering the music to the listeners. Since the creation of Quad ESL 63, there are so many new amplifiers been made and you must be wondering which one of them is best suited to match your electrostatic speakers. Do not worry, please continue to read on to find out how.
We are planning to share with you the best amplifiers which you can go for but first, let’s learn more about the sonic prowess and strengths of these classic electrostatic speakers. With this information, you can easily hunt for matching amplifiers in the future on your own. Alright, let’s get started.
Sound Characteristics and Strengths of Quad ESL 63
The Quad ESL 63 doesn’t look like your conventional loudspeaker design, it is a high profile speaker that will draw attentions to itself when placed inside most homes. Your pet cat may find it irresistible too, as the electrostatic speaker looks like a scratchboard to them. They require space for them to breathe, as you need to do a lot of trial and error to get the right imaging. Once you get the speaker placement right, you will be in for a treat. They are also quite shunned by spouses since they take up lots of space and have a striking appearance which also makes it quite difficult to aesthetically match with most amplifiers.
Whether if people like the look of the Quad ESL 63 can be a hit or miss but we do find them uniquely beautiful though. The speaker sensitivity is at 86dB and it is considered below average. The nominal impedance is at 8 Ohms with a minimum of down to 6.2 Ohms, which does help with the situation of making it slightly easier to drive the ESL 63. The power handling of these electrostatic speakers is up to 100 Watts and we should go for amps that have the power output as close to it as possible since such electrostatic loudspeakers can be quite power-hungry.
Quad ESL 63 are speakers that have plenty of insights and delivers a massively detailed music presentation. It has a refine sonic performance, with musical sound quality and in terms of tonality it is very well-balanced. The highs are sweet and smooth sounding, not to mention, the amount of details in the high frequency sounds absolutely gorgeous without any hint of harshness. The airiness is equally alluring, and the stereo imaging is superb with a wide soundstage. The accuracy of the music delivery is remarkable as well.
The vocals are clean and natural sounding, due to the very detailed midrange reproduction working cohesively together with the high-frequency range. Each instrument is highly defined and with great clarity. The clarity of the Quad ESL 63 speakers does not result in harsh brightness and is pleasing to the ears. The bass frequency on the other hand is lacking and doesn’t have the weight to it. The presence of the deep bass is almost inaudible and nowhere prominent. A subwoofer will help in this situation, probably an active sub with proficiency in the mid-bass reproduction so as to provide fuller sound quality. Still, if your music genres are not bass-heavy and require prominent deep bass reproduction, the Quad ESL 63 is more than sufficient.
The limited power capacity (100W) of the Quad ESL 63 does hinder the level of loudness you can really go for, if only the speaker sensitivity is a little higher it will be fantastic. The overall sonic performance of the ESL 63 still holds up to this day which already exceeded our expectations. You will need to push the volume up to really hear how rich and sweet-sounding they are, they’ve sounded so natural too. The spatial sound quality and the fluidity of the music presentation are certainly enjoyable to listen to. It is time for us to start sharing with you the best amplifiers which you can get and pair them with your legendary Quad ESL 63 electrostatic speakers.
Quad ESL 63 Specifications
- Speaker Type: Full-range electrostatic speaker
- Frequency Response (-6dB): 35Hz-20kHz
- Power Handling: 100 Watts
- Nominal Impedance: 8 Ohms (min. 6.2 Ohms)
- Sensitivity (2.83V/1m): 86dB
- Dimensions (H x W x D): 925mm x 660mm x 270mm (base: 150mm) | 36″ x 26″ x 10″ (base: 10″)
- Weight: 23kg (51lbs)
Best Amplifiers to match with Quad ESL 63
One of the very best amplifiers to go with the Quad ESL 63 will be a Quad preamp and power amp combo. For the preamplifier section, the Quad 99 preamp will be the ideal choice, complementing the ESL 63 electrostatic speakers with their greater dynamics and impeccable control. Couple with a matching power amplifier, the Quad 909, you got yourself an amazing sound system that is well-match with the Quad ESL 63 loudspeakers, with similar sonic signatures for a cohesive sound reproduction. They bring out the best of each other, the only qualms will be the lack of modern features.
Another amazing Quad preamp and power amp combination to pair with your Quad ESL 63 speakers, especially if you are into vinyl. The Quad Artera Pre will be the preamplifier to go for, it comes with an advanced feature called Tilt control, where you can adjust the overall balance of the sound quality to either make it warmer or cooler sounding. The Class A phono stage provides you with a low-noise and amazing sonic performance when playing back your favorite vinyl via your turntable. As for the power amplifier section, you can go with the matching Quad Artera Stereo power amp. It has more than enough power to really drive the Quad ESL 63 speakers.
If you are planning to get a subwoofer into the mix and do not have much to invest in an integrated amplifier, then the Denon PMA-600NE will be the ideal choice for you. Firstly, the price point of the PMA-600NE is affordable and secondly it is packed with loads of modern features. It has a built-in DAC for you to playback high resolution audio files from your computers, a MM phono with Analog mode for a detailed sound reproduction of your favorite analog soundtracks and more. There is also Bluetooth support and a subwoofer output. The Denon PMA-600NE will be a great match for your Quad ESL 63 when you have a tight budget.
The Parasound NewClassic 200 Integrated will be another high performance integrated amplifier that is sanely priced and has the muscles (110W into 8 Ohms) to drive the Quad ESL 63 electrostatic speakers with ease. This integrated amplifier uses Pascal Class D amplification which delivers clean and high quality power. Parasound NewClassic 200 is loaded with a plethora of features such as Digital to Analog converter, MM Phono, Home Theater bypass and more. The subwoofer output with variable 20Hz to 140Hz high pass crossover also comes in very handy when connecting to your active subwoofer.
The Yamaha A-S801 is an incredibly musical sounding integrated amplifier with plenty of clarity to boot, and complements the Quad ESL 63 speakers. The power output of 100 Watts per channel, enable the amplifier to easily drive the ESL 63 speakers. The ultra-low harmonic distortion within the frequency response of 20Hz-20kHz provides a cleaner sound quality and a more refined music presentation of your favorite tunes. The dedicated subwoofer output will come in handly as well. It is recommended to have an audition with them first though and hear them out.
Getting a subwoofer to supplement the bass performance will be a good idea especially if most of your music genres are bass-heavy and/or requires a subwoofer to reproduce very deep bass prominently. To match the musicality of the Quad ESL 63 speakers, you should go with sealed subwoofers as they are more accurate, tighter and agile enough to keep up with the loudspeakers’ pacing. SVS subwoofers are amazing choices, and you should really check out SVS SB-2000 Pro, it is a powerful sealed subwoofer. Another professional active subwoofer to check out will be the Ken Kreisel DXD-808, it is faster and more musical sounding, which is really worth your time and effort to audition them. You can even stack the DXD-808 on top of each for a smoother and more powerful bass reproduction.
You should stick with the Quad amplifiers such as the one listed here as they are the best matching amps for your Quad ESL 63 speakers. You can give them a listen first then try hearing the other listed brands/models, see which amp do you like better. The Quad ESL 63 speaker owners usually stick with Quad designed amplifiers but you might want to try other brands if you want to hear something new. It can be really fun when hunting for new amplifiers, hearing how other amps sound like and you wouldn’t know you may even find a new sound signature which you really like.