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Wharfedale Diamond 12.3: An In-Depth Review

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Hey there, audio enthusiast! If you’re on the hunt for an exceptional floorstanding speaker, we’re here to help. Today, we’ll be taking a close look at the Wharfedale Diamond 12.3.

In this review, we’ll explore the ins and outs of the Wharfedale Diamond 12.3 floorstanding speakers, examining their design, specs, and performance. You’ll discover all the important factors of choosing your ideal speakers and come away with a better understanding of whether this particular model is a perfect match for you.


When it comes to the price of the Wharfedale Diamond 12.3 floorstanding speakers, they currently retail on Amazon for around $1,000-1,300 each. This places these speakers in the higher price range among our top 10 list of best floorstanding speakers. There are certainly less expensive models available. But obviously there’s more to these speakers than just their price, so let’s move on to design.

Design and build

Though different floorstanding speakers may look alike, they can vary in their design, construction and quality of materials—all factors which can affect how they sound and how long they last. Let’s drill down on some specifics:

Aesthetic features and available finishes

The Diamond 12.3 speakers don’t disappoint in the appearances category. They’re sleek and modern, with a minimalist design that will complement any room. You can choose from four elegant finishes: black, white, walnut, and light oak. This variety means you’ll have no trouble finding a pair that fits seamlessly into your living space.

Dimensions and placement considerations

These floorstanding speakers measure 36.1 inches tall, 7.7 inches wide, and 11.7 inches deep. Their slim profile ensures they won’t dominate your room, while the sturdy base keeps them stable.

When positioning the Diamond 12.3 speakers, consider their rear-firing bass port. Make sure to leave some space between the speakers and the wall to allow for proper airflow. Experiment with angling the speakers slightly inward toward your listening position for optimal imaging.

Build quality and materials used

An audio company that’s been in the audio business since 1932, Wharfedale has a reputation for using high-quality materials, and the Diamond 12.3 speakers are no exception. The cabinet is constructed from MDF, which reduces unwanted resonances and vibrations, ensuring your audio remains clean and clear.

For the drivers, Wharfedale opted for a woven Kevlar cone for the midrange and bass, while the treble driver features a fabric dome. These materials contribute to the speakers’ excellent performance across the frequency spectrum.

Speaker configuration and driver technology

The Diamond 12.3 is a three-way speaker, meaning it has separate drivers for bass, midrange, and treble (related: 2-Way vs 3-Way Speakers Demystified). This configuration allows for a more accurate reproduction of audio, as each driver can focus on a specific frequency range.

The bass and midrange drivers are 5 inches, while the treble driver is 1 inch. Wharfedale’s Advanced Driver System (ADS) technology ensures seamless integration between the drivers, resulting in a smooth and cohesive sound.

Technical specifications

Now we’re getting into the juicier details. Let’s look at some more quantitative features and specs of the Wharfedale Diamond 12.3 speakers.

Power handling and impedance

With a power handling of 150 watts and an impedance of 8 ohms, the Diamond 12.3 speakers are easy to drive. This means they’ll work well with most amplifiers or AV receivers, even those with lower power outputs.

Frequency response and sensitivity

The Diamond 12.3 boasts an impressive frequency response of 45 Hz to 20 kHz. This wide range ensures that you’ll hear everything from the deepest bass notes to the highest treble details.

These speakers also have a sensitivity rating of 89 dB, which is relatively high. In layman’s terms, this means they can produce a decent volume level with a moderate amount of power.

Crossover design and components

The crossover in the Diamond 12.3 is a crucial component, as it directs the appropriate frequencies to each driver, ensuring a balanced and accurate sound reproduction. Wharfedale has carefully designed this crossover using high-quality components, such as air-core inductors and polypropylene capacitors. This attention to detail contributes to the speakers’ exceptional audio performance.

Recommended amplifier pairing

While the Diamond 12.3 speakers are compatible with a wide range of amplifiers, it’s essential to choose one that complements their specifications. Look for an amplifier with a power output of around 30 to 150 watts per channel at 8 ohms. This will ensure you get the best performance and longevity from your speakers.

Sound quality

If sound quality isn’t already one of your biggest concerns when it comes to picking out floorstanding speakers, it definitely should be. Here’s how the Wharfedale Diamond 12.3 performs:

Soundstage and imaging

One of the standout features of the Diamond 12.3 speakers is their ability to create an immersive soundstage. They excel at projecting a wide, three-dimensional audio landscape that envelops the listener. And the precise imaging ensures that each instrument and voice is accurately placed within the soundstage, providing a realistic and engaging listening experience.

Bass performance and low-end extension

The Diamond 12.3 speakers deliver impressive bass performance given their size. The low-end extension is deep and well-controlled, providing a solid foundation for your music without overpowering the other frequency ranges. If you’re a bass lover, these speakers won’t disappoint.

Midrange accuracy and vocal reproduction

The midrange is where the Diamond 12.3 speakers truly shine. Vocals and instruments sound natural and lifelike, with a warmth and clarity that brings your favorite tracks to life. Whether you’re listening to a delicate acoustic ballad or a powerful rock anthem, these speakers capture the emotion and nuance of the performance.

Treble clarity and high-frequency detail

The Diamond 12.3 speakers offer a well-balanced treble that’s smooth and detailed without becoming harsh or fatiguing. High-frequency details, such as cymbal crashes and delicate string harmonics, are reproduced with precision and sparkle, adding an extra layer of realism to your listening experience.

Ideal usage scenarios

Not every speaker you find will be suitable for your intended application. Here are some of the Wharfedale Diamond 12.3’s ideal use cases:

Home theater setups

The Diamond 12.3 speakers are a fantastic choice if you’re a home theater enthusiast. Their wide soundstage, accurate imaging, and powerful bass performance make them perfect for immersing yourself in your favorite movies and TV shows. Pair them with a matching Wharfedale center channel and surround speakers for a seamless and engaging surround sound experience.

Stereo listening and music production

If you’re a music lover or an aspiring producer, the Diamond 12.3 speakers won’t let you down. Their accurate and detailed audio reproduction makes them ideal for critical listening and monitoring during music production.

Compatibility with various room sizes and acoustic conditions

These speakers are versatile enough to perform well in a variety of room sizes and acoustic environments. But they’re best suited for small to medium-sized rooms, where their bass performance can truly shine without becoming boomy or overwhelming.

Comparison with competing floorstanding speakers

Now’s the time in this Wharfedale Diamond 12.3 review when we’d like to give you some frame of reference or basis for comparison. With that in mind, here’s how these speakers stack up against similar competing models:

MartinLogan Motion 40

The MartinLogan Motion 40 speakers, priced at around $1,400 per pair, are much less expensive than the Wharfedale Diamond 12.3. The Motion 40 speakers are known for their electrostatic Folded Motion tweeters, which provide a detailed and smooth high-frequency response.

While both speakers offer balanced and engaging sound, the Diamond 12.3 speakers may have a warmer and more natural midrange, whereas the MartinLogan speakers might be more appealing to those who prefer greater detail and transparency in the treble frequencies.

Focal Chora 826

Like the MartinLogan model above, the Focal Chora 826 speakers are also priced at around $1,400 per pair. The Chora 826 features Focal’s unique Slatefiber cone technology, which aims to deliver a dynamic and controlled sound. 

While both these and the Wharfedales have excellent bass performance and wide soundstages, the Diamond 12.3 might offer a more natural and lifelike midrange compared to the Chora 826. On the other hand, the Chora 826 may have a slightly more energetic and forward sound signature.

KEF Q950

The KEF Q950 speakers are priced at around $1,100 each, putting them in the same pricing range as the Diamond 12.3. The Q950 features KEF’s Uni-Q driver array, which is designed to provide a more even and consistent sound dispersion. 

While both speakers excel in delivering detailed and engaging sound, the Diamond 12.3 may have a more laid-back and warm tonality, while the Q950 might have a more neutral sound signature. Additionally, the Q950’s unique driver technology could offer a more cohesive and focused soundstage (related: KEF Q950 Review: Unleash True Audiophile Bliss).

Pros and cons of the Wharfedale Diamond 12.3

Now that we’ve drilled into design, performance, specs and compared these speakers to similar models in their class, here’s an overview of the Wharfedale Diamond 12.3’s main pros and cons:


  • Impressive bass performance: For their size, these speakers deliver deep and well-controlled bass, providing a solid foundation for your music.
  • Lifelike and detailed midrange: Vocals and instruments sound natural and authentic, thanks to the speakers’ exceptional midrange reproduction.
  • Smooth and well-balanced treble: High-frequency details are clear and precise, without becoming harsh or fatiguing to the ears.
  • Wide soundstage and accurate imaging: The Diamond 12.3 creates an immersive, three-dimensional audio landscape that envelops the listener.


  • May not satisfy extreme bass lovers: While the bass performance is impressive, those seeking earth-shattering low-end power might be left wanting more.
  • Rear-firing bass port requires space: The speakers need some room behind them for proper airflow, which might be a limitation in some setups.
  • Best suited for small to medium-sized rooms: The Diamond 12.3 performs optimally in smaller spaces, so those with larger rooms may need to look at other options.

The Bottom Line: Is the Wharfedale Diamond 12.3 Your Ideal Speaker?

So, who are these speakers perfect for? If you’re looking for a pair of floorstanding speakers that offer a well-rounded and balanced audio performance, the Wharfedale Diamond 12.3 is an excellent choice. They’re particularly well-suited for home theater setups, stereo listening, and music production in small to medium-sized rooms.

However, if you’re a bass fanatic seeking earth-shattering low-end power, these speakers may not fully satisfy your cravings. In this case, consider exploring other options with larger woofers or adding a dedicated subwoofer to your setup. Alternatively, you might look into the Wharfedale Diamond 12.4, which offers a slightly larger cabinet and more powerful bass performance.

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