The Official $3,000 Speaker Evaluation / Home Audition Event - Page 12 - Home Theater Forum and Systems - HomeTheaterShack.com

Reply
 
Thread Tools
post #111 of 267 Old 03-05-14, 09:09 AM
Senior Shackster
 
zieglj01's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Texas
Posts: 630
Re: The Official $3,000 Speaker Evaluation / Home Audition Event

Quote:
Big Red Machine wrote: View Post
Salk speakers are not known for sibilance. If it is in the recording, then you will hear it.
A good point - also the speaker was not made for the extreme head-banging crowd,
or for those who want to continue to enjoy listening, to poor recordings.

Who or Where, is The Way, Truth and Life?

Speakers - MB Quart VS05, Boston VS260, Snell K7
Subwoofer - Mordaunt Short Aviano 7
Receiver - Tascam PAR-200, Pioneer VSX-30
zieglj01 is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #112 of 267 Old 03-05-14, 11:10 AM
Senior Shackster
Erin
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: North, Alabama
Posts: 290
Re: The Official $3,000 Speaker Evaluation / Home Audition Event

If you guys had some quasi-anechoic on/off-axis data for the speakers tested, that would resolve the concern over whether the speaker is adding or removing something from the music. In that sense, the speaker performed as it should have (ie; it contributed in some way to the response by removing or adding something to what should be a flat anechoic respons).

You may even be able to extract this information to some degree by evaluating the IR and gating the response. I'd imagine the best you could achieve is a reflection free response above 400hz or so, but that would at least tell you what's occurring in the speaker itself (not caused by the reflections that aren't able to easily be identified without in depth analysis).

Just some positive "criticism" for future testing.
Erin H is offline  
post #113 of 267 Old 03-05-14, 12:15 PM
Shackster
Jim
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Michigan
Posts: 5
Re: The Official $3,000 Speaker Evaluation / Home Audition Event

First off, thanks to Sonnie for putting this project together and to Wayne, Leonard and Joe for their time and dedication in reviewing the various models. We at Salk Sound were honored to have been able to participate and provide our Supercharged SongTowers for this evaluation.

For those interested, I thought a few comments regarding our design philosophies would shed some additional light that some may find useful.

As I've said many times in the past, speaker design is all about balancing trade-offs. There is no free lunch. Often, achieving performance in some area involves a trade-off somewhere else. For example, high efficiency generally comes at the expense of bass extension. Choose a larger driver that plays deep and it probably won't perform all that well in the midrange. You get the idea. It is simply the laws of physics at work.

In our opinion, the most important aspect of speaker performance is midrange accuracy and detail. All great speakers have one thing in common: they get the midrange right. This is where 80% of the information is in a recording and where all the dialogue is in home theater. If you don't get this right, you may have a "good" speaker, but you will never have a "great" speaker.

So when we consider a new design, we won't put our name on it unless we are satisfied that the midrange performance meets our expectations. Top end air and transparency, along with deep bass extension, are secondary considerations.

If we sold speakers at retail, perhaps our design goals would be different. In a quick evaluation in an audio showroom, consumers generally take note of top end air and bass extension. But they often pay relatively little attention to midrange performance. Unfortunately, only after they get their purchase home do they discover that the bass is boomy and the top end is fatiguing. Since we don't sell at retail, we don't need to play games to win a showroom shoot-out. We are free to concentrate on speakers that excel in the all-important midrange go from there.

As you move up in our product line, the top end becomes more detailed and transparent and the bottom end becomes more extended. But we try to insure that no matter which speaker a customer chooses, the midrange performance will be excellent.

For example, the Supercharged SongTowers use Seas Excel W15's, a 5" woofer with magnesium cones. Magnesium is lighter and stiffer than paper. So these drivers can start and stop faster than a typical paper, kevlar or poly coned driver. The result is more detail and accuracy in the midrange. These 5" drivers do an exceptional job but, of course, can only move so much air down low. Want more bass? Move up to our Veracity ST's with 6" W16's or our Veracity HT2-TL's with 7" W18's. These speakers will move more air down low for added bass weight and heft.

But the midrange performance in all three of these models will be equivalent.

The other thing I might point out is that manufacturers will often boost bass in the region somewhere between 50Hz to 200Hz. This provides the illusion of "better" bass performance. But the frequency is no longer flat and the speakers do not accurately reproduce the sound they are being fed. In this case, the speakers are adding content that is not in the original recording.

I once had a cusomter come to our shop with a pair of his current (from an un-named but well-respected brand) speakers to compare to the SongTowers. He loved everything about the SongTowers but thought his speakers played deeper bass. I didn't think this was the case, so we measured both speakers. Sure enough, the SongTowers actually played deeper. His speakers simply had a hump in the response around 100Hz that provided an illusion of enhanced bass performance.

That is not to say that a person cannot enjoy a speaker with a response that is modified to accentuate some frequencies. But that is not what we are interested in doing. Our goal is to produce speakers that are neutral and accurate and don't add any character of their own to the sound. We are building speakers, not musical insturments that modify the sound.

One final comment... Much has been written about our finishes. We do put a lot of extra effort (and time) into our finishes. It is only natural to think we may pay less attention to finish quality on our lower priced models. This is not the case. No matter what speaker a person chooses, it is an important purchase and one that they will likely live with for some time. So we do our best to insure that the speaker they receive serves as a source of pride for years to come.

Again, thanks for taking the time to evaluate our Supercharged SongTowers. Great job and much appreciated!

- Jim
jsalk is offline  
post #114 of 267 Old 03-05-14, 12:45 PM
Shackster
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Olney, Illinois
Posts: 73
Re: The Official $3,000 Speaker Evaluation / Home Audition Event

Jim,

Thanks for restating your speaker philosophy from your website in so many words - it makes much sense.
padgman1 is offline  
post #115 of 267 Old 03-05-14, 12:51 PM
Senior Shackster
 
fokakis1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Hattiesburg, MS
Posts: 174
My System
Quote:
jsalk wrote: View Post
First off, thanks to Sonnie for putting this project together and to Wayne, Leonard and Joe for their time and dedication in reviewing the various models. We at Salk Sound were honored to have been able to participate and provide our Supercharged SongTowers for this evaluation.

For those interested, I thought a few comments regarding our design philosophies would shed some additional light that some may find useful.

As I've said many times in the past, speaker design is all about balancing trade-offs. There is no free lunch. Often, achieving performance in some area involves a trade-off somewhere else. For example, high efficiency generally comes at the expense of bass extension. Choose a larger driver that plays deep and it probably won't perform all that well in the midrange. You get the idea. It is simply the laws of physics at work.

In our opinion, the most important aspect of speaker performance is midrange accuracy and detail. All great speakers have one thing in common: they get the midrange right. This is where 80% of the information is in a recording and where all the dialogue is in home theater. If you don't get this right, you may have a "good" speaker, but you will never have a "great" speaker.

So when we consider a new design, we won't put our name on it unless we are satisfied that the midrange performance meets our expectations. Top end air and transparency, along with deep bass extension, are secondary considerations.

If we sold speakers at retail, perhaps our design goals would be different. In a quick evaluation in an audio showroom, consumers generally take note of top end air and bass extension. But they often pay relatively little attention to midrange performance. Unfortunately, only after they get their purchase home do they discover that the bass is boomy and the top end is fatiguing. Since we don't sell at retail, we don't need to play games to win a showroom shoot-out. We are free to concentrate on speakers that excel in the all-important midrange go from there.

As you move up in our product line, the top end becomes more detailed and transparent and the bottom end becomes more extended. But we try to insure that no matter which speaker a customer chooses, the midrange performance will be excellent.

For example, the Supercharged SongTowers use Seas Excel W15's, a 5" woofer with magnesium cones. Magnesium is lighter and stiffer than paper. So these drivers can start and stop faster than a typical paper, kevlar or poly coned driver. The result is more detail and accuracy in the midrange. These 5" drivers do an exceptional job but, of course, can only move so much air down low. Want more bass? Move up to our Veracity ST's with 6" W16's or our Veracity HT2-TL's with 7" W18's. These speakers will move more air down low for added bass weight and heft.

But the midrange performance in all three of these models will be equivalent.

The other thing I might point out is that manufacturers will often boost bass in the region somewhere between 50Hz to 200Hz. This provides the illusion of "better" bass performance. But the frequency is no longer flat and the speakers do not accurately reproduce the sound they are being fed. In this case, the speakers are adding content that is not in the original recording.

I once had a cusomter come to our shop with a pair of his current (from an un-named but well-respected brand) speakers to compare to the SongTowers. He loved everything about the SongTowers but thought his speakers played deeper bass. I didn't think this was the case, so we measured both speakers. Sure enough, the SongTowers actually played deeper. His speakers simply had a hump in the response around 100Hz that provided an illusion of enhanced bass performance.

That is not to say that a person cannot enjoy a speaker with a response that is modified to accentuate some frequencies. But that is not what we are interested in doing. Our goal is to produce speakers that are neutral and accurate and don't add any character of their own to the sound. We are building speakers, not musical insturments that modify the sound.

One final comment... Much has been written about our finishes. We do put a lot of extra effort (and time) into our finishes. It is only natural to think we may pay less attention to finish quality on our lower priced models. This is not the case. No matter what speaker a person chooses, it is an important purchase and one that they will likely live with for some time. So we do our best to insure that the speaker they receive serves as a source of pride for years to come.

Again, thanks for taking the time to evaluate our Supercharged SongTowers. Great job and much appreciated!

- Jim
Thank you for submitting your speakers to this evaluation. I trust these guys insight and have enjoyed reading about your STs. Welcome to the forum.

Control4 Automation Programmer
fokakis1 is offline  
post #116 of 267 Old 03-05-14, 03:02 PM
Shackster
 
jmilton7043's Avatar
Jim
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Boston area
Posts: 26
My System
Re: The Official $3,000 Speaker Evaluation / Home Audition Event

Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy!
jmilton7043 is offline  
post #117 of 267 Old 03-05-14, 03:37 PM
Shackster
Feanor
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 7
Re: The Official $3,000 Speaker Evaluation / Home Audition Event

What? No classical music among the test tracks? For me this invalidates are subjective results.
Feanor is offline  
post #118 of 267 Old 03-05-14, 03:41 PM
Plain ole user
 
lcaillo's Avatar
Tech Guru
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Gainesville, FL, USA
Posts: 11,121
Send a message via AIM to lcaillo
Re: The Official $3,000 Speaker Evaluation / Home Audition Event

Quote:
Erin H wrote: View Post
If you guys had some quasi-anechoic on/off-axis data for the speakers tested, that would resolve the concern over whether the speaker is adding or removing something from the music. In that sense, the speaker performed as it should have (ie; it contributed in some way to the response by removing or adding something to what should be a flat anechoic respons).

You may even be able to extract this information to some degree by evaluating the IR and gating the response. I'd imagine the best you could achieve is a reflection free response above 400hz or so, but that would at least tell you what's occurring in the speaker itself (not caused by the reflections that aren't able to easily be identified without in depth analysis).

Just some positive "criticism" for future testing.
I don't know what you mean by "quasi-anechoic on/off- axix data" nor how that would tell us anything about whether a speaker is adding or removing something from the music. There are many assumptions implicit in that kind of determination and an infinite number of variables in collecting and interpreting such response. I don't see where there is much to be gained beyond the measurements that we already have published, on both the speakers and the room.

I appreciate constructive criticism, but I really do not understand why you think we could gain anything like this.

Looking for me, just google my username. I have used the same one for most sites for many years.
lcaillo is offline  
post #119 of 267 Old 03-05-14, 03:47 PM
Plain ole user
 
lcaillo's Avatar
Tech Guru
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Gainesville, FL, USA
Posts: 11,121
Send a message via AIM to lcaillo
Re: The Official $3,000 Speaker Evaluation / Home Audition Event

Quote:
jsalk wrote: View Post
Again, thanks for taking the time to evaluate our Supercharged SongTowers. Great job and much appreciated!
- Jim
Jim,
The pleasure was ours! It is a joy to get to spend time with so many fine products and we appreciate manufacturers who are willing to allow us to evaluate their products for our members and guests.

I hope that we succeed in giving our readers some insight into each that is meaningful. It gets to be much more difficult with speakers at this level. We are beyond the point where individual perception and preference dominate much of what we hear and readers should take our experiences and how we report them in that context. These are, after all, just our individual experience, and others may take something comepletely different away from listening under the same conditions.

Looking for me, just google my username. I have used the same one for most sites for many years.
lcaillo is offline  
post #120 of 267 Old 03-05-14, 03:55 PM
Plain ole user
 
lcaillo's Avatar
Tech Guru
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Gainesville, FL, USA
Posts: 11,121
Send a message via AIM to lcaillo
Re: The Official $3,000 Speaker Evaluation / Home Audition Event

Quote:
Feanor wrote: View Post
What? No classical music among the test tracks? For me this invalidates are subjective results.
Then you don't have to read the reviews. You are welcome to audition the speakers for yourself and report your findings with whatever music you choose. It just so happens that most of what the group of reviewers listen to is not classical. We all have some in our collections but it does not represent the bulk of our preference. We report our experiences with music that we are familiar with and listen to. Certainly there are much better reference recordings than many of our test tracks. We try to select music that reveals something about the speaker and is fun for us to listen to.

You are welcome to suggest some tracks for the next round of evaluations, if there is one. We will consider it.

Looking for me, just google my username. I have used the same one for most sites for many years.
lcaillo is offline  
Reply

Bookmarks

Tags
$3 , 000 , audition , evaluation , event , home , official , speaker

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now




PLEASE COMPLETE ALL REQUIRED FIELDS BELOW... THANKS!

REQUIRED FIELDS ON THIS PAGE
YOU MUST COMPLETE ALL OF THESE

Username
Password
Confirm Password
Email Address
Confirm Email Address
Random Question
Random Question #2




User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
PLEASE READ BELOW PRIOR TO ENTERING AN EMAIL ADDRESS!

ATTENTION!

YOU MUST ACTIVATE YOUR ACCOUNT!

Activation requires you reply to an email we will send you after you register... if you do not reply to this email, you will not be able to view certain areas of the forum or certain images... nor will you be able download software.

AN INVALID EMAIL ADDRESS WILL CAUSE YOUR ACCOUNT TO BE DELETED!

See our banned email list here: Banned Email List

We DO NOT respond to spamcop, boxtrapper and spamblocker emails... please add @hometheatershack DOT com to your whitelist prior to registering or you will get nowhere on your registration.


Email Address:
OR

Log-in









Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML is not allowed!
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

 


For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome