An interview with Holger Fromme of Avantgarde Acoustic

We would like to thank everyone who attended last Saturday’s event with Holger Fromme that was held in our showroom, and who contributed to make the event a success. There was pleasant conversation accompanied with nice finger food and beautiful music to be enjoyed by all. Reproduced below is an interview with Mr. Fromme that was conducted by Terence Wong of MOD-AVI magazine.

Avantgarde – Purity meets Performance

An interview with Holger Fromme


From the conversation we have with Herr Holger Fromme, the MD of Avantgarde Acoustic, it is obvious he loves music and to him, nothing beats the impact of a live performance.

HF: My generation are used to the big sound in a live concert – big horns are the only speaker capable of generating a big sound in a concert experience. Now it is all about loud, but loud without dynamic range is not pleasant to listen to. To experience a live concert like what we do in the sixties and seventies – say a Pink Floyd concert, is an experience one never forgets! Some years back when Michael Jackson performed in Mannheim, my Design Director Matthias went to see their ‘Pyrobass’, essentially a horn build into a 30-foot container. At a certain point of the performance, the drummer will kick a switch on the floor, which sets off a small explosive device to trigger a shock wave amplified by the horn to 140 dB. It was an amazing experience!

Loudspeakers need to move air and pressurize the room. An Avantgarde speaker is about moving air and horn loudspeakers are open, effortless, airy, immediate and pressurize the room very well. We cannot do that with small loudspeakers so there will never be a small loudspeaker from Avantgarde.

Avantgarde was founded almost twenty years ago, next year is our 20th anniversary. Our goal remains the same – to create the best and most lively sounding loudspeakers. Horns is a design choice, it has much less inertia compared to box loudspeakers. There were many who said horns cannot be matched with box woofers. We proved them wrong! Of course the ultimate speaker system we offer is full horn, the Trio with a Bass horn. The difference between the Duo and Uno is enormous – the Uno have a 20-inch horn with a 5-inch midrange driver while the Duo uses a 27-inch horn with a 6.5-inch midrange. The difference is the Uno crosses over to the woofers at 300 Hz while the Duo has a full octave advantage – it crosses over at 170 Hz. The Duo sounds more open and with more depth.

Today the internet is important to Avantgarde – it used to be the relationship between the customer and the dealer with the media providing support. Today, the manufacturers also have to get into the picture. That is something we are working towards – our website have to be more communicative, have to be able to address their questions and needs. The worldwide Avantgarde family defines who are we, what is the essence of what we do?

We did a workshop within our company, involving everyone and we discussed various aspects of what we do and define who we are and we come up with two personalities – ‘Pure’ and ‘Creator’. Pure as in simplify or simplicity in our design – like the midrange having no crossover. Creator as in innovation, like our Capacitor Polarization Circuit or CPC – we see what goes on inside of a capacitor and we built the CPC circuit to optimise its performance. ‘Pure’ also looks back and maintain tradition while Creator looks ahead – to innovate and discover new grounds.

In a way, our name also exemplifies Pure and Creator – Avantgarde is for advance guard, where the soldiers go out to seek the position and intention of the enemy before the battle. So putting together ‘Pure’ and ‘Creator’ we have Purity meets Performance, our new slogan.

Tell us more about the G2 (Generation Two) loudspeakers

HF: The G2 is about bringing the designs to perfection. To create the new look we engaged an industrial designer – Tobias Adami of Adami Design. The G2 look lean and transmit the impression of power. It looks good from every angle. The new structure makes the speaker easy to setup and even moving from one place to another, the specially designed packaging can be reused over and over again.

The midrange enclosure is improved with a cast end cap, there new midrange drive units feature an outward concave dome, the subwoofer box is bigger and the drivers and electronics have been substantially improved. The tweeter is also changed.

Is there an upgrade option for customers using the older G1 series?

The only thing similar between the Uno G1 and G2 or the Duo G1 and G2 is the horn – even then the mounting of the G2 horn to the enclosure has been improved. There are too many changes to be worth making the effort. The customer would be better off with a brand new pair of G2 and sell off the old G1, which is still a very good speaker today.

In a few months we are moving to a larger factory, about 2200 sq meters. In the factory we will have a flagship showroom to showcase and demonstrate the entire range of Avantgarde loudspeakers, if anyone is interested to hear the difference, say between the Duo and Duo Omega for instance, you are most welcome to make a visit to the factory – just call us in advance and we will ready the system prior to your arrival. And of course while you are there, you can take a short tour around the factory!




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