AVS Forum Club Gold
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Waterloo, Ontario, Canada
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I have Waveform Mach 17 speakers, which are designed from the ground-up around a custom Bryston 3-way active cross-over. I power the bass and mids with my EAD PM2000 amp, while the tweeters are powered by my Cinepro 3K6-III amp. A benefit of the Cinepro is that it has level controls for all 6 of its channels. The Bryston cross-over also has "tone"controls for each of its bass/mid/treble sections.
I bought these speakers based on their sound, the design concepts , and their very unique aesthetics. FYI: At the time, the next $cheapest Stereophile A-Rated speaker was 3 times the cost of the Waveforms.
I like adjustability in my speaker, depending on the music I am listening to, and my mood. I like having the ability to adjust my amps gain, or play with the "tone" controls of the Bryston cross-over. These are further benefits of an active tri-amped design system. I balance levels & tone by what is appealing to my ear, not by my RS meter. I did have a TacT RCS at one point too, which was a very cool product.
Though I question taking any speaker, removing the passive crossovers, and substituting an active crossover ( Bryston, Marchand ) in its place. The components used in a passive crossover, and the slopes chosen ( 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, etc ) do impart a signature on the speaker sound. This is all taken into consideration by the speaker's designer to accomplish their design/sound goals. This is part of the "sonic charm" that attracted you to a speaker to begin with. So substituting an active will change that "sonic charm" you first bought into. Whether it is better or worse is up to the listener to decide, but it is a departure from the original designers goals.
Tri-amping is a big investment in $dollars and space -> amps, interconnects, speaker cables, and induced clutter :) However, I do not see parting with my Waveforms for a long long time. They are also very short, and do not interfere with my projector screen.