Meet the world's dumbest (and most expensive) speaker: the $4.7 million Hart Audio’s D&W Aural Pleasure Loudspeaker - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 26 Old 08-17-2012, 08:50 PM - Thread Starter
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It looks awful for something so expensive.
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post #2 of 26 Old 08-17-2012, 08:57 PM
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Those stands are god awful looking. Almost cringe worthy.
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post #3 of 26 Old 08-17-2012, 09:04 PM
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Originally Posted by shadyJ View Post

It looks awful for something so expensive.

Interesting, they even reccomend corner placement.smile.gif And they claim 97db sensitivity!

All that money, and you get a Tannoy coaxial driver and a ring-radiator tweeter.smile.gif

They look dumb and ugly to me > Hopefully, they sound better than they look.

At least HiFi Choice likes them, (5 stars)

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post #4 of 26 Old 08-17-2012, 09:15 PM
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Those drivers are top notch, the cabinet is inert, stepped baffle is smart. Ugly as all get out, but I could forgive that.

Charging that much is unforgivable, but that doesn't mean they won't sell every one made. I would very much like to hear them.

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post #5 of 26 Old 08-17-2012, 09:15 PM
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They only go down to 47Hz. Seems like there might be a lot of money to be made by selling a matching million dollar gold/silver/bronze sub. Just use lead instead of MDF and gold/silver/bronze plate it and no one would know the difference.
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post #6 of 26 Old 08-17-2012, 09:16 PM
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Why are you guys such haters? I have a pair of these for my surround sound speakers and they are great.
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post #7 of 26 Old 08-18-2012, 12:47 AM
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It's only like $63,000 in cast bronze guys eek.gif Who cares if it looks like a completely inept speaker design, and is extremely ugly. The filthy rich who buy these might not even listen to them, ever.
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post #8 of 26 Old 08-18-2012, 02:27 AM
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They look like a gold turd folded in half. The article says that they are cast in bronze, silver, and gold for better amplification inspired by the bell of Big Ben. Why would you purposely want the cabinet to resonate?

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post #9 of 26 Old 08-18-2012, 04:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flyng_fool View Post

They look like a gold turd folded in half. The article says that they are cast in bronze, silver, and gold for better amplification inspired by the bell of Big Ben. Why would you purposely want the cabinet to resonate?

I was going to say that they look like an ear canal, but your description is better.
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post #10 of 26 Old 08-18-2012, 05:44 AM
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From the rear, it looks like a boxing glove. The best part is, aside from the gold, silver and bronze, which explains the high price tag, the driver itself is probably made out of $10 dollars worth of materials in a Chinese sweat shop. I'll bet a $500 dollar pair of towers sound almost as good, considering what the price difference would be.

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Of course, I got it modified with the TK-427, which cheeks it up another, maybe, 3 or 4 quads per channel.
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post #11 of 26 Old 08-18-2012, 05:53 AM
 
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post #12 of 26 Old 08-18-2012, 06:23 AM
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These speakers have to be one of the best con artist attempts I've ever seen.eek.gif What a joke. For me it's not all about the cost. They're basically just bookshelf speakers that still require a subwoofer and they're ugly. Even if I had that kind of money I would never buy these speakers. If I ever won the lottery and was going to spend a massive amount of money on some speakers they would be larger more capable speakers with better performance specifications then these speakers.
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post #13 of 26 Old 08-18-2012, 06:45 AM
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Sure it's probably a con but look at it this way. All Hart Audio has to do is sell one pair and they have had a successful year.

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post #14 of 26 Old 08-18-2012, 07:07 AM
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Hate to disappoint anyone but I just purchased these speakers from a guy in a white van for $150.00 each. He even threw in a lifetime replacement warranty. All I have to do is come back to his van and he will gladly honor the warranty.

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post #15 of 26 Old 08-18-2012, 07:31 AM
 
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Originally Posted by 49Merc View Post

Hate to disappoint anyone but I just purchased these speakers from a guy in a white van for $150.00 each. He even threw in a lifetime replacement warranty. All I have to do is come back to his van and he will gladly honor the warranty.
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Wow! You have high end, backdoor dealers in Texas? eek.gif I thought that was strictly a New York City franchise thingy. tongue.gif
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post #16 of 26 Old 08-18-2012, 07:34 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Paraneer View Post

Sure it's probably a con but look at it this way. All Hart Audio has to do is sell one pair and they have had a successful year.

It's more likely an "artistic" statement sort of thing. As an example are diamond studded bras. People have canned their own poo and called it art. Not joking.
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post #17 of 26 Old 08-18-2012, 09:06 AM
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Intresting but I'd really like to try the $44 million dollar bottle of liquer they listed. Cheers.smile.gif
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post #18 of 26 Old 08-18-2012, 10:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zieglj01 View Post

All that money, and you get a Tannoy coaxial driver and a ring radiator-tweeter.smile.gif

And not even one of their latest-greatest ones. That 6-hole ovoid basket and Tulip phase plug marks the driver as Tannoy's 2046 8" unit, which was found in several of their speakers: the System 800 studio monitor, CMS8 ceiling speaker, i8AW indoor/outdoor speaker, and others. Here's a good picture of one I found in a quick google image search.

image873.jpg

It's a good driver. One of the first, IIRC, to use Mark Dodd's "Tulip" phase plug. (Interestingly, Mr. Dodd left Tannoy for KEF some time ago, and has since taken the other major concentric driver family, KEF's Uni-Q, to new heights.) Now, should the 2046 be in a five-figure speaker in 2012? Clearly no.

The 2046 is not Tannoy's best 8" unit, nor was it even their best when it was in wide use (they had two others that were better) but still pretty good.
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Originally Posted by tesseract67 View Post

Those drivers are top notch, the cabinet is inert, stepped baffle is smart. Ugly as all get out, but I could forgive that.

In addition to the old, not-flagship Tannoy driver, the cabinet design is shamelessly cribbed from 1990s B&W's Blue Room spinoff, which I believe lives on under the Scandyna name. (Or perhaps Scandyna came first and B&W licensed the design.)

Really, this speaker looks like it's stuck ca. 1994 in parts (well, the Vifa XT-series ring radiators are a newer design than that) and styling.
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the driver itself is probably made out of $10 dollars worth of materials in a Chinese sweat shop. I'll bet a $500 dollar pair of towers sound almost as good, considering what the price difference would be.

It's one thing to knowingly poke holes in something that's silly. It's another to speak out of unfounded ignorance.

I'm pretty sure all of the 2046's were made in the UK, not China. I think at the time at least Fane was making for Tannoy. At least, all 6 or so of mine clearly say "Made in the U.K."

The 2046 simply dates from before the era of massive international outsourcing.

As for parts cost, I don't know. FWIW, a factory recone kit costs a lot more than $10, and that doesn't include obviously the magnet, polepiece, or frame.

The 2046 is a well-made driver. The frame is clearly bespoke (which is why I could tell it from the mounting flange) but it's also a stamped steel piece. Not cast alloy like Tannoy's step-up 8" Dual Concentrics of the day.

And I can't think of a $500 tower that sounds better than a well-implemented Tannoy 2046.

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post #19 of 26 Old 08-18-2012, 11:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Jay1 View Post

It's only like $63,000 in cast bronze guys eek.gif Who cares if it looks like a completely inept speaker design, and is extremely ugly. The filthy rich who buy these might not even listen to them, ever.
That is what it is. It is just an average speaker in a precious metal. The only good thing is if you ever go belly up, these speakers will certainly hold their value. These could very well be a highly desired speaker since people with unlimited money look for things like this to invest their cash in. It is certainly safe to say that Gold and silver is where it's at.
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post #20 of 26 Old 08-19-2012, 01:14 AM
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Originally Posted by DS-21 View Post

And not even one of their latest-greatest ones. That 6-hole ovoid basket and Tulip phase plug marks the driver as Tannoy's 2046 8" unit, which was found in several of their speakers: the System 800 studio monitor, CMS8 ceiling speaker, i8AW indoor/outdoor speaker, and others. Here's a good picture of one I found in a quick google image search.
image873.jpg
It's a good driver. One of the first, IIRC, to use Mark Dodd's "Tulip" phase plug. (Interestingly, Mr. Dodd left Tannoy for KEF some time ago, and has since taken the other major concentric driver family, KEF's Uni-Q, to new heights.) Now, should the 2046 be in a five-figure speaker in 2012? Clearly no.
The 2046 is not Tannoy's best 8" unit, nor was it even their best when it was in wide use (they had two others that were better) but still pretty good.
In addition to the old, not-flagship Tannoy driver, the cabinet design is shamelessly cribbed from 1990s B&W's Blue Room spinoff, which I believe lives on under the Scandyna name. (Or perhaps Scandyna came first and B&W licensed the design.)
Really, this speaker looks like it's stuck ca. 1994 in parts (well, the Vifa XT-series ring radiators are a newer design than that) and styling.
It's one thing to knowingly poke holes in something that's silly. It's another to speak out of unfounded ignorance.
I'm pretty sure all of the 2046's were made in the UK, not China. I think at the time at least Fane was making for Tannoy. At least, all 6 or so of mine clearly say "Made in the U.K."
The 2046 simply dates from before the era of massive international outsourcing.
As for parts cost, I don't know. FWIW, a factory recone kit costs a lot more than $10, and that doesn't include obviously the magnet, polepiece, or frame.
The 2046 is a well-made driver. The frame is clearly bespoke (which is why I could tell it from the mounting flange) but it's also a stamped steel piece. Not cast alloy like Tannoy's step-up 8" Dual Concentrics of the day.
And I can't think of a $500 tower that sounds better than a well-implemented Tannoy 2046.

Forgive me, they're made in the UK, in I'm sure a much better factory, that pays their workers incredibly well to make these top notch drivers.

And perhaps, not $10 dollars, I'll be generous and say $100 dollar drivers, in their million dollar speakers. Yes, much more worth the price tag. Unless that driver is made from some precious metal that's only found on the moons of Neptune, I don't believe for a second it costs much, regardless what you've seen places sell the drivers for or claim they're worth.

And I said a $500 dollar pair of towers sound just as pleasing, given the enormously ridiculous price difference. You want me to be more realistic? OK. I'll bet a nice $2,000 dollar pair of towers could equal or best these overpriced things.

I'm not trying to be an ass either, just going off what I know about speakers being the most overpriced thing in HT, next to cables.

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Of course, I got it modified with the TK-427, which cheeks it up another, maybe, 3 or 4 quads per channel.
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post #21 of 26 Old 09-28-2012, 10:29 PM
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I noticed this thread and felt compelled to join AVS just to reply!

Not only do these use relatively low-in-the-range Tannoy drivers but the guy David Hart bought the cabinets on eBay!

Here is the old eBay auction he won: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/200688850702 thankfully still viewable even though it was in December. The listing even does state that the seller was told they were designed by B&W (like was mentioned above).

So Hart has just taken some ready-made cabinets, stuck in some off the shelf drivers (probably off his workshop shelf), put them on weird stands and now charges £40k a pair!

Obviously it does cost to get each new pair cast but it's crazy and you're all right to pick them apart for what they are IMO..

There's a discussion from around the time on another forum here: http://theartofsound.net/forum/showthread.php?t=16465 where David Hart chimes in and admits that he found them on eBay. It can't do much for any attempt to patent them either as they are prior art as the thread says so the limited edition thing could be blown out of the water by that.
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post #22 of 26 Old 09-29-2012, 10:24 AM
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I'm coming out with a pair of speakers that'll cost several times what these do and will outperform them in every way possible. Having some problems getting the 300 kilos of unobtainium though... cool.gif
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post #23 of 26 Old 09-29-2012, 10:43 AM
 
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Having some problems getting the 300 kilos of unobtainium though... cool.gif

Three hundred kilos? I've amassed five kilos worth and since there's zero chance of me getting the required 300 kilos, I'm happy to donate them to your most worth cause.

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post #24 of 26 Old 09-29-2012, 11:44 AM
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Those stands are god awful looking. Almost cringe worthy.
recycled stands from a barber shop chair circa 1988.
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post #25 of 26 Old 09-29-2012, 06:43 PM
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Arrr.... the world of high-end hi-fi..!

If you don't charge enough for it - then audiophiles won't think it's good enough.

Did that speaker/amp/CDP cost you $500 in parts to make? Don't sell it for $1000 that would return you a nice margin.... noooo... a $1k speaker/amp/CDP is just cheap rubbish in the eyes of audiophiles!

Ask $500,000. for it and automatically audiophiles will think it's the best in the world and Michael Fremer will wax lyrical about it.

Don't worry if no sucker comes along with more money than brains in the first 12 months... just wait a while then reduce the price down to $100,000 and customers will come out of the woodwork thinking they are getting such a great bargain and value for money.

Had you just asked $1,000 for it... people would think you are just some eccentric nutjob and not given your product the time of day.
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post #26 of 26 Old 09-29-2012, 06:53 PM
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Arrr.... the world of high-end hi-fi..!
If you don't charge enough for it - then audiophiles won't think it's good enough.

Those aren't audiophiles, those are morons.
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