Adam Audio Olympus Sound System

If the Greek gods had been audiophiles, they might well have used something like the Olympus Sound System (OSS) from Adam Audio, a German high-end maker of products for the professional and consumer markets. This behemoth stands seven feet tall and weighs over 350 pounds with separate enclosures for each set of drivers.

The highs and midrange are reproduced by Adam's ART (Accelerating Ribbon Technology) drivers, which are based on the Heil air-motion transformer concept. The diaphragm is a pleated membrane, and the folds expand and contract in concert with the audio signal, drawing in air between them and forcing it out at much greater velocity than the folds themselves exhibit.

Each channel of the OSS includes eight ART tweeters and 12 ART midrange drivers, with half of them firing forward and half firing backward. The system can be configured to operate as a bipole (front and back in phase), dipole (front and back out of phase), or monopole, in which case the rear-firing drivers are disabled.

Eight 9-inch aluminum-cone mid-woofers are stacked in their own sealed enclosure, all facing forward. Next to them is a ported enclosure housing two 19-inch, side-firing, HexaCone subwoofers.

Altogether, each channel is reproduced by no less than 30 drivers, and the OSS is equipped with integrated class D power amps to feed them. The subwoofer amp provides 1000W RMS, while three separate amps for the mid-woofers, midranges, and tweeters each provide 500W RMS.

Tying the entire system together is a DSP engine that provides crossovers, para- metric EQ, and bass-level control. It can accept both analog and digital inputs and includes dual AD/DA converters, one of which is dedicated to low-level signals. The result is said to be a dynamic range greater than 27 bits (162dB!) at a sampling rate of 192kHz.

With an overall frequency range from 18Hz to 50kHz, you'd expect the OSS to be expensive, and you'd be right—220,000 Euros (nearly $280,000 as of this writing) for a 2-channel system. Few mortals can afford that much for this active speaker system, but those who can are likely to enjoy the music of the gods.

Lokko's picture

I like the approach of powered speakers and this system seems to be extraordinary although I'm not too sold on the separate cabinets design but I have never seen it so I shouldn't complain, BTW is made in Germany and you Germans make good stuff like the Sham-wow! no sarcasm for real.

Jarod's picture

Man I love this setup! Having that many drivers per channel is what sells me, thats assuming I had $220,000 to devote to my home theater speakers. Oh and to be able to convince my wife! Sweet speakers tho thats for sure!!!

Shinobix's picture


Robert's picture

Hey the price ain't that bad! ...Compared to the last TV set I read about! I would even call it a bargain!

Scott Wilkinson's picture

Shinobix, thanks for the link!

Raymond's picture

I been of the Adams that go for $3,000.00 a pair and $10,000.00 a pair and they sound good they are as transparent as the Mar tin logan

Johnny's picture

I have actually heard this system @ Munich High End 2008. And yes - it´s that good!!! I´m a big fan of ADAM´s latest series of active studio monitors SX series (not the previous SA series) - very transparent and very much slam. :-) Regards Johnny Denmark