The Atomic Instrument SixTen was developed in Detroit Michigan. Originally for Dan Auerbach (along with longtime Atomic beta tester Collin Dupuis) while producing and recording Lana Del Rey’s “Ultra Violence”. He requested a small powerful monitor that was capable of full range high output in a “hip”, vintage looking package, a nod to the beloved Altec “612s”. But smaller with much better sound quality.
While it was a challenge to achieve the look, it was worth it. The design of the enclosure forced Norman to deal with directivity and nondestructive diffraction in ways previously not thought of. It also made for a 1.5” thick, multi-material extremely inert cabinet.
Norman has been designing and building speakers for “as long as he can remember” has vast experience in all driver manufactures and had no problem finding robust, ultra-low distortion units proven in previous custom systems.
The compact ring radiator tweeter is the latest evolution from Frank Neilson of Scan-Speak fame. Tom Elmhirst heard them and described them as “effortless”.
The 6.5” mid-bass uses a lightly coated paper cone and massive state of the art “underhung” motor for the perfect combination of richness and detail.
The rear loaded 10” sub driver can handle much more power than other studio monitors. It uses multiple copper rings in the motor for extremely low distortion.
Unlike the endless sea of lifeless DSP “corrected” studio monitors, the SixTen uses a passive discrete crossover between the midrange and tweeter @ 2.6kHz, the result of 20 years of empirical research, development and tireless listening tests. The crossover between the sub driver and mid-bass @120Hz is a proprietary hybrid passive and active filter that operates at line level and is built into the outboard amplifier system..
The amp also has controls to achieve perfect balance between the mid/bass and sub drivers for your room and a stepped by-passable inductor based midrange presence control for fine tuning in the critical 800hz to 2khz region.
The system is completed with a 4 channel Ncore amplifier that delivers 550 watts at 2 ohm with .005% THD (x4). The same technology has found it’s way into $50,000 “high-end” amplifiers.
“10 out of 10”. -Dave Cobb
“Norman you are messing with my mind! I would have definitely bought these if I didn’t buy your large system”. - Vance Powell ( Vance later bought 3 pairs of the Atomic SixTens with his partners Mitch Dane and Mike Fahey.
“Thanks dude!!! You seriously changed my career with these speakers. I'm getting more first pass mix finals than I knew were possible. Haha”. -Will Pugh