The carrier refused to collect the Chiaras, claiming that they were ‘too heavy’. A standmount ‘too heavy’? I found this difficult to believe. However, the Editor stepped into the breach, somehow managing to struggle the package into his car. The Chiara is indeed a stand-mount, and a quite compact example in its way too, but it also incorporates an integral stand, and
our samples came packed as a pair inside one already substantial flight case. Helping to unload them certainly went some way towards explaining the carrier’s recalcitrance, especially once I’d figured out that the total weight of the package just topped 100kg.
Priced from around £16,000/pair (depending on options), this must be one of the most costly stand-mounts on the planet, but there are plenty of far more costly floorstanders around these days, including other Kawero! models, and since all are designed to carry out the same basic task, there seems little authentic reason to make the distinction. Each type has advantages and disadvantages with respect to the other, and there’s really no reason why a stand-mount can’t compete directly with a floorstander, on sonic as well as price and presentation grounds.
However, before getting down to the nitty gritty of the speaker itself, some explanation regarding the nomenclature is necessary, because it’s all quite complicated. The speakers are actually manufactured by Kaiser Acoustics GmbH, a substantial family-owned operation founded in 1948 that specialises in advanced wood-based engineering and acoustic solutions, situated in the extreme south east of Germany.
The Kawero! brand name is a made up composite of the three hi-fi enthusiasts that initially inspired the whole thing. The ‘we’ in the middle refers to Technical Director Rainer Weber, who carries out most of the design side (including component selection and extensive auditioning) in a high quality purpose-built listening facility in Regensburg (a large city 120km north of Munich).