We tried the Focal Sopra No2 standing speakers!

We tested a pair of the Focal Sopra No2 standing speaker in a medium-sized hi-fi room a few days ago. The owner works as a sound engineer, and invited us because he replaced his previous speakers with the French-made Focal speakers. The audio room was acoustically ideal, the owner took care of the acoustic treatment of the walls, ceiling and window, so there was no room for improvement regarding acoustics. For the rather old, worn-out sound-absorbing panels, we recommended renovating the exterior with new acoustic silk covering.

Let’s get to the point – take a closer look at the speakers!

The product’s original name was JM Labs named after the company’s owner, Jacques Mahul. The beautifully crafted, respectable-sized, hand-crafted speakers made of wood panels by the company have always received flattering reviews.

Focal-Sopra-No2 review

They used innovative solutions in their production. The 3-way, high-end speaker is a noble representative of premium audio equipments. The speakers features dynamics, optimal surround sound and detailed sound. The Focal Sopra No2 speaker consists of two 18 cm “W-cone” subwoofers, a 16.5 cm centre speaker and an “IHL” beryllium inverted dome tweeter. The compact, contemporary, clean and elegant design is to most to our liking, and although its size is not small – it weighs 55 kg – it can still be conveniently integrated into any style of interior with a minimum area of ​​30 square meters. Available in several vibrant colours, the metallic lacquer finish catches the eye,. The combination of fine, soft curves and sharp lines results in a harmonious, pleasing look. There is a thick tempered glass on the base of the speakers, the steel spiked legs can be fixed with a screw.

speakers pad
speaker pad

Due to the relatively large weight of the speakers, it is advisable to place an aluminium disc under the legs in order to avoid damaging the parquet or wood floors. Thick MDF sides and internal stiffeners, as well as high material density ensure strengthening of the speakers and vibration free operation. The lower part of the speaker tilts backwards, while the centre speaker tilts forward, making the phase balance and radiation direction ideal. The 3-way tweeter is located between the subwoofer and the centre speaker, just at the right height for a sitting listener. The diaphragm of the tweeter is rigid and thin. Due to the thin diaphragm, cross-modulation and backward radiation can be noted. A horn-shaped cavity has been created in the tweeter housing to gradually absorb unpleasant vibrations, resulting in a 30% reduction in distortion.

Focal Sopra No2 speaker

A thin aluminium grille protects the speakers. The speaker mounts are closed by a metal rim. An innovative solution was used to fix the speakers and magnets. Through NIC technology, a neutral inductance circuit controls the magnetic field, which also results in a reduction in distortion. A few specs: frequency transmission is 34 Hz-40 kHz (- / + 3 Db), low frequency point at 28 Hz, speaker sensitivity 91 dB, impedance 8 ohms, crossover frequency 250-200 Hz, and recommended amplifier power: 40-300 Watts . The reflex box has a reflex tube pointing towards the sole, which is closed at the back and around. The granite-patterned diaphragms of the drives are made of plastic, called “W Composite Sandwich Cono”, which is used to dampen vibrations. A glass plate was placed on top of the speaker as a decorative element.

Audio test

speaker test-pc

We used a NAD C-388 stereo amplifier with an audio PC to pair them with the Focal speakers during testing. We started the audio test with classical music. We listened to he amazing work of Johann Sebastian Bach Toccata and fugue for organ in D minor. This Baroque piece features fast, whirling tirades that the Focal Sopra No2 did not distort at high volumes either, we witnessed an extremely fine, detailed sound quality.

We went on with alternative rock music, listening to Nirvana: Smells like Teen Spirit. The volume was wound up properly to give us a real rock feeling. Kurt Cobain’s hoarse singing (or shouting) sounded clear, powerful, realistic, the music was detailed and spacious, the guitar sound was clearly discernible. Maybe the orchestral parts seemed a little shady, but it might only have been audible to our overly sensitive ears, nevertheless, it wasn’t disturbing us at all and it didn’t spoil our pleasure in any ways either.

We then put on the year’s hit song Savage love by Jason Derulo. We didn’t detect any flaws, experienced intense bass (sometimes maybe a little too much), vocals were clear and understandable this time as well.

Dr.Dolittle movie poster

We’ve decided to play a movie on DVD to test another level of sounding, we chose Doctor Dolittle, starring Robert Downey Jr. The Focal speakers performed well again, the effects, soundtrack and dialogues sounded fantastic, creating a real spacious effect.


In the production of the Focal Sopra No2 stationary speakers, the manufacturers have strived for extremely high quality, both in engineering design and production. With the help of unique and innovative technical solutions, vibrations have been practically reduced to a minimum. The exterior of the speakers can’t be a reason for complains either, each part of them is beautiful and sophisticated. They are recommended for hi-fi rooms and living rooms, they will not disappoint for sure.


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