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REVIEWED
SPONSORED BY
LD Systems MAUI P900
By Steven Honeyball.
After unpacking and first setup, the MAUI P900 from LD Systems is awaiting me. And I'm quite impressed... LD Systems has partnered with the renowned Porsche Design Studio to realise a joint vision: merge aesthetics and cutting-edge technology into a modern audio system that excels both in the upscale event and residential sector as well as for bands and DJs looking for something special.

Look

Before we get down to the technical details and functionality, I can already state: the MAUI P900 stands out as distinctively different to any other active PA system on the market. In fact I’d go as far as to say that I believe its design will go down in audio history!

The basic shape of the MAUI P900 reminds me of a triangle with a rounded tip. The elegant aluminium cabinet is complemented by a multi-layer speaker cover and blends organically into the overall design. Style-conscious DJs also benefit from three different colour options: Cocoon White, Graphite Black and Platinum Grey.

Technology

The MAUI P900 features two 10'' woofers in the bottom subwoofer cabinet, 16 x 2.8'' mid-range drivers and 32 x 1'' tweeters in the upper columns. The dispersion of the system is 140° horizontal x 15° vertical – perfect for covering dancefloors and other large audience areas with a maximum of 250-350 listeners.

As a true all-in-one PA, you don't need to carry external amplifiers with you. The subwoofer cabinet contains three fanless Class-D amplifiers with a total output of 1,400 watts (RMS) / 2,800 watts (peak). Despite this multitude of speakers and amplifiers, the 2.17 metre high P900 weighs only about 46 kg and can be easily transported by two people (LD Systems not only offers a custom case and various gig bag variants, but also an extremely practical dolly board to quickly move the P900 anywhere you want).

Connections and Bluetooth

In addition to the analogue XLR sockets for stereo Input and Thru on the back panel, the MAUI P900 can also be connected via Bluetooth and supports SBC, AAX and aptX formats. Thanks to the Bluetooth stereo circuit, the system can also be wirelessly connected to another P900 and operated as a true stereo system! LD Systems specifies a maximum distance of 70 metres for a wireless stereo signal (when used with one P900). In practice, I have reached distances of almost 40 meters until the signal gets disturbed. Needless to say, the Bluetooth connection quality always depends on numerous external factors, but with a distance of 40 meters there's nothing to stop me as a DJ.

What's much more important: the Bluetooth sound is compelling in every aspect. In direct comparison to the wired setup, I could hear minimal differences. However, these would only be noticed by audiophile listeners and won’t matter in event or wedding settings.

Sound

First of all I tried the MAUI P900 with a vocal microphone to check the speech intelligibility. The results were excellent without having to adjust the EQ. But then I can't anyway, because the MAUI P900 doesn't have any EQ or other complicated controls, only two rotary dials: one for the total volume and one for the subwoofer level. It couldn't be easier!

Even with music of different genres, the MAUI P900 performs superbly and produces a massive and lively sound that never makes me want to adjust the EQ of the system more precisely. The two 10'' speakers generate a powerful low-end down to 42 Hz, while the mid-range and high-frequency drivers round out the sound perfectly. I was also particularly impressed by the lack of background hiss produced by the MAUI P900, making it just as suitable for intimate wedding ceremonies as it is for big parties.

Summary

The MAUI P900 is a column PA system for high-class events. The collaboration between LD Systems and the Porsche Design Studio has paid off: a luxurious audio system in an elegant aluminium housing with an impressive sound. So many technical refinements and the unique look naturally come at a price: almost £3,700 for one MAUI P900 isn't cheap - but you get a professional column PA that is really unparalleled on the market. The only disadvantage is that if you're performing at weddings you should be prepared that the wedding guests' attention may no longer be focused exclusively on the bridal couple!
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The full review can be found in Pro Mobile Issue 97, Pages 80-82.
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