AR Rating 87/100


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What We Like

  • Great quality of tone.
  • Improved cabinet design.
  • Slot-loaded ports.

What We Don’t Like

  • Quality control could be better.

Wharfedale’s Diamond series has always been known for its potential. The latest Wharfedale Diamond 220 ironed out a lot of imperfections of its predecessors, becoming one of the most refined and capable bookshelf speakers under $500.

Design

Previous iterations of the Diamond series from Wharfedale were impressive, to say the least. After all, this brand is known for creating some of the best speakers on the market. However, they always seemed to have cut a few corners when it came to cabinet design or materials used. We are happy to report that such imperfections are nowhere to be found on the Diamond 220.

Cabs feature a solid MDF construction, a rather detailed rosewood vinyl finish, and a pretty awesome looking baffle. Wharfedale went one step further in the aesthetics department, offering cone grilles instead of your standard ones. This way you can customize the aesthetics of your Diamond 220s. It is also worth mentioning that there are no standard ports to be found. Instead, Wharfedale went with a slot loaded port design that does a great deal in terms of bass control. So far, these are definitely the best looking Diamond series speakers.

Features

The hardware found in the Diamond 220 bookshelf speakers from Wharfedale isn’t all that unique. However, the way everything was put together and optimized is the real game changer here. They have included a set of their woven Kevlar transducers, one being a 1″ tweeter and the other a 5.1″ woofer. These are paired with a highly fine-tuned crossover that brings the silky smooth transition across the frequency range.

Compared to their predecessors, Diamond 220 bring beefier magnets on the woofer as well as a reinforced cabinet design. They have gone above and beyond to tighten up these speakers where you are only exposed to the pure capabilities of the drivers. Wharfedale’s decision to bring back the slot loaded ports has proven to be the right way to go. This feature alone gives the Diamond 220 speakers that extra versatility that gives them the edge. In terms of hardware, these are rock solid.

Performance

Wharfedale’s Diamond series were always intended to be used in smaller rooms. If there is one thing that can seriously impact the performance of this type of speakers, it is the ports. By switching to the slot loaded ports instead of standard rear firing ones, Wharfedale has enabled the user to position the Diamond 220 only 15mm from the wall. In other words, they have made these much more efficient in smaller rooms. When it comes to raw performance, these come with a few surprises.

Their low end is massive, deep and easily controlled. That is not something we can usually say for a compact set such as this one. Moving up to the mid-range, you’ll experience a good amount of warmth and overall clarity. Trebles offer an abundance of detail and precision, which goes perfectly with the rest of the tonal profile. At the end of the day, Diamond 220 from Wharfedale bring a massive, yet refined image.

The Rumble:

Diamond 220 represent what this family of speakers is all about. Their performance, appearance, and build quality speak volumes about what Whaferdale considers crucial in their designs. Overall, these are one of the best speakers in this price range.


AR Rating 87/100


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