So now we have taken a look at the speakers that make up this system, how does the Teufel System 5 actually perform?
Teufel claim that the System 5 should perform well for both movies and music, which is often a difficult thing for a speaker system to achieve. However, a 5.1 system that is THX-certified suggests that movies are the main target for this setup, so let's first take a look at how it gets on at reproducing soundtracks.
The first thing that becomes clear when using the System 5 for the first time, is how easy it is to fill the room with sound. The speakers provide a wide soundfield, possibly due to the wide, flat-diaphragm design of the front three speakers, and this makes it easy to setup the system to compliment the width of the audio soundtrack.
Unlike some systems, you don't need to be sat exactly in the middle of the speakers to get the full effect of the panning effects from left and right, and this should also scale up to larger rooms too. Incidentally, the System 5 is recommended for rooms up to 35 m² - so there is plenty of power there if you have the right amplifier.
The rear dipole speakers are also effective at diffusing the sound, and they dovetail nicely with the front satellites. You get an excellent surround effect in the room without too much effort in placing the speakers in exactly the right positions.
The subwoofer, as expected from a beast like the S 5000, has the ability to lift you from your seat when you get to some really low frequency effects (sorry neighbours). The 80 Hz crossover works well with the satellite speakers, and it's hard to tell if the sound is coming from the front or subwoofer speakers - which is a good sign and indicates that the system is well designed to work together.
The subwoofer actually works really well, and gives a tight bass sound that jumps out with plenty of power when required. At first I thought the bass sub was a bit 'polite' and reserved for such a large subwoofer, but after living with it for a while I realised it was because it complemented the satellite speakers so well. It was doing its job without any fuss, but would still rattle the windows when required by the soundtrack.
The front satellites provide a detailed sound which are a cut above many 5.1 satellite speakers, although they may sound a bit too clinical for some tastes. The 130mm woofers are large enough to give a reasonable weight to voices and sound effects without relying too much on the subwoofer.
All in all, I liked the performance of this system with movies - and it proved it can handle subtle soundtracks and effects-driven epics alike.
So how was the System 5 when it came to reproducing music?
Well, up to a point, pretty good.
As already stated the front satellites do provide a fairly detailed sound and, unless you have a reasonably good stereo setup, you will hear many music tracks as you've never heard them before.
It should be pointed out that the speakers can't really operate on their own without the subwoofer (well, they can, but it won't sound that great!). This really is a '.1' system and needs the subwoofer to round off the sound and give a full frequency response. The THX specification means that the speakers are specifically designed to work together.
The subwoofer responds very quickly with music and, as with movies, it works well with the satellites to give a full sound.
The downside is the slight harshness in upper-mid frequencies that was slightly evident with movies, but is emphasized more with music - although more with some tracks than others. The satellite speakers can get very sibilant at certain frequencies and this is very evident with things like female vocals.
A few Eddi Reader tracks I tried were especially sibilant on certain words, and this would prove annoying if you were listening carefully. However, put on some Pink Floyd and it didn't sound too bad.
I managed to smooth out some of this sibilance using the parametric EQ on my AV receiver - however, just bear in mind this isn't something most people would be comfortable with doing, and may not even be possible depending on the equipment you are using.
This system doesn't have the smoothness of higher-end music systems - but then to be fair that's not where it is aimed. Even with a warm-sounding Yamaha receiver, you could still class the sound as bright, and so the choice of amplifier used with the system may be important.
I also didn't have a THX-certified AV receiver which may be slightly unfair on these THX-rated speakers.