Review: Canton Pro XL.3

Anonymous and unengaging

Canton follows an old speaker recipe with the Canton Pro XL.3, something is ruining the fun, however.

Published 25 March 2021 - 8:52 am
Canton Pro XL.3
Geir Nordby

Canton Pro XL.3 is a very compact outdoor speaker, but still Canton’s largest. You can choose between white or black.

The speakers are made for easy wall mounting: First you mount the wall bracket on the wall, based on whether you want horizontal or vertical mounting (or what about slanting?). Then turn mount the speaker easily with two included clamps. The speaker can be rotated almost 90 degrees in each direction from the center position.

The sound of Canton Pro XL.3

Singing voices – female as well as male – sound surprisingly rich, considering the compact dimensions of the speakers. Billie Eilish’s voice on the Bond song No Time To Die has a nice fullness in the chest sound area, and the piano has a warm fullness that is easy to like.

With quiet and not too complex music without much bass, Canton sounds perfectly fine. The treble could well have been more distinct, it gets a little woolly – but no big deal.

The problem is that most music has bass in it, and you want to be able to turn up the volume beyond pure background noise. Especially outdoors, where the sound from the speakers tend to be lost in the surroundings.

Canton Pro XL.3 XL3
This is how Canton XL.3 looks in black. Photo: Canton

As the Eilish song gradually escalates, the speakers fail to keep up. Instead, they kneel, and bass tones set off a distortion that propagates far up in the treble range. It shrinks metallically every time a bass note tries. Ariana Grande never offers to dance. A narrow chamber ensemble can work well, but only if the double bass takes it easy.

If you want these, you must either play very silent, or use a processor that can do bass management. And send the bass frequencies to a subwoofer instead. Something we do not expect you to bother doing.


Canton Pro XL.3 are a pair of compact outdoor speakers. They do sound fuller than they look, but there is also the problem. Because even if they manage to play vocals well on their own, it becomes something quite different as soon as the bass guitar or drums come in. Not only does it get flat, but also distorted. The Canton speakers fail to catch up with their bigger competitors, and although these are the most affordable in the field, one can not say they offer much for the money. We simply have to say we are a little disappointed.

Canton Pro XL.3

We think

Fuller sound than the size suggests. Compact dimensions blend nicely with the facade. Muffled sound, the bass distorts when you turn up the volume. Flat dynamics.

Among the best in its class

Big sound in a flexible format

Wall art with sound

Punches above its weight class

Finally truly wireless

Sublime music presenter in 70s disguise

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