Hazy on Grecian mythology? According to Gryphon, Pantheon was a fabled island with advanced technologies. Sea god Poseidon bequeathed it to his mortal wife. Purchase of a Danish Pantheon commits a mortal dealer to, genie like, visit their client god thrice: once to deliver and install; two weeks later for a post break-in adjustment; and three months later for a final check-up. The Pantheon's sticker includes this service. It reiterates our TEMTheme. Let the experts do what they're expert at. The Danish design team developed this speaker in a 50m² room "with typical acoustic damping corresponding to most modern residential spaces". The physical time alignment and focus of the concave baffle's geometry lock in at a 5-metre distance. If you've not crossed over to active crossover bias before, Avantgarde Acoustic from Germany exploit it as well; and AudioQuest are one company who apply battery-sourced bias to the dielectric of their cables. In the Pantheon, the DC voltage of two PP3-type 9V batteries charges electrolytic capacitors in the 4th-order acoustical filter network to remove/reduce the memory effect for the zero crossing. A toggle on the back lights up an LED to confirm battery power. They should last for 1-2 years. When the LED refuses to come on, it's time for replacements. Obviously the speaker will work even with dead batteries. This bias is a performance enhancement, not do or die. For cosmetic enhancements, the modular side panels are easily interchanged. That gives an owner access to virtually unlimited finish options including carbon fibre as shown next; at time of purchase and subsequently when a move to new quarters might entail desire for a different look. Like Japanese business culture, Gryphon's is the long view. Clients invest in Gryphon, hence Gryphon must invest in their long-term satisfaction.


To wrap up our mini tech tour, the pleated Mundorf air-motion transformer based on a now expired patent by Oscar Heil drives the air via a bellows-type squeeze action. This is calculated to be 5 times as effective as a traditional pistonic 1" dome tweeter. To apply equal control and driving force to their dynamic drivers—which are already paralleled for twice the efficiency and half the excursion requirements—Gryphon's custom transducers get a triple-magnet system each. Both woofers (each with their own dedicated port) and the layer-damped fiberglass midranges exploit the same hot-rodded motor systems. Filter components are sourced from Duelund, Jensen, Holm and Mundorf. Silver-over-copper hookup wiring is Gryphon's own as are the speaker terminals. To shut down the usual pathways for migrating physical resonances, each driver occupies its very own baffle section rather than share real estate on a single panel. It also enables the 7cm thick front's signature shallow curvature. A sound-absorbent surface layer prevents the usual diffraction and with it, ghost images from secondary baffle reflections. For proper mechanical grounding, each speaker interfaces with the floor via a very solid adjustable quad footer system. Finally, Gryphon's design aesthetic champions modern yet timeless forms. Our Danes do not go for the futuristic, occasionally robotic or freaky excesses which some competitors allow themselves. For Gryphon, audio remains what the Germans call Tonmöbel; furniture which makes sounds. As long as you fancy black metal and shiny black glass with green readouts—a modern loft look perhaps—Gryphon have you covered to perfection. And whilst the Pantheon is the company's most compact tower speaker, it's clearly a sizeable very heavy affair to us ordinary mortals. Ditto the Diablo 300. But when you name yourself after a winged lion of fabled antiquity, the usual parameters no longer apply. Clearly Gryphon are for those who pursue things at a more heroic level.


Blueprint of Hadrian's Pantheon in lower middle. That's because in Roman times, a pantheon became a special building dedicated to the veneration of deities.

After the HighEnd Munich 2016 launch of the new Kodo flagship and reissued Mojo S monitor, I asked Flemming Rasmussen whether their sleek new cosmetics would migrate to the Pantheon as well. "I would love to apply these new wings to the Pantheon but that would need to happen together with a substantial performance upgrade which we cannot envision at present. The wings are very expensive additions. Unless we can combine them with a demonstrable performance upgrade, it wouldn't make enough sense relative to the necessary price increase." If you thought that Gryphon's luxury positioning made them insensitive to fair value, this answer suggests otherwise. As a newer model in the line, the Pantheon simply hadn't aged enough. In-house tech advances since its release hadn't yet overtaken it to enable any type of reasonable makeover. Hence no minor swoops for the Pantheon.


In the real world. Far from swooping either was their heroic arrival which instigated my own little episode of Hell on Wheels. The oversized freight lorry couldn't make it down our narrowly tree-lined country lane. The ~290kg pallet (Pantheon cheek to cheek in their own crates, Diablo 300 on top) made it over most of our compacted gravel drive way on the driver's electric pallet mover, him pulling, me pushing. Then it got stuck halfway up the soft incline. Back to the stone age it was with my own collapsible manual cart one crate at a time. Doing things by hand and single-ended really was best. Once unboxed, Ivette snuck into one of the open crates. She could stand upright in it. That gives you a perfect size reference. Here comes another...