Know any monitors that’ll favorably compare to Tekton Impact monitors for $2000/pair? - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 30 Old 05-28-2020, 05:21 AM - Thread Starter
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Know any monitors that’ll favorably compare to Tekton Impact monitors for $2000/pair?

Hey guys, anybody here have any experience with standmount monitors/bookshelf speakers that compare favorably to the Tekton Impact monitors for $2,000 a pair?

I’m looking for monitors, and from the reviews I’ve been able to find, they seem unbeatable at that price point.

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post #2 of 30 Old 05-28-2020, 10:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Utopianemo View Post
Hey guys, anybody here have any experience with standmount monitors/bookshelf speakers that compare favorably to the Tekton Impact monitors for $2,000 a pair?

I’m looking for monitors, and from the reviews I’ve been able to find, they seem unbeatable at that price point.
Tekton is a somewhat controversial company. Do a forum search and you'll figure out why.

HINT: If you care about measurements, try to find some of any Tekton speakers.

There are TONS of great speakers between $1K-2K/pr. Nobody dominates that price category, unless you've drunken a particular company's Kool-aid.

~ Are you a "geek hobbyist" obsessed with squeezing out that last 5-10% improvement? The economy will thank you...especially the Chinese one. Or are you more of a get-set-and-forget "casual user" who simply wants to increase your enjoyment of movies, TV and gaming? Relax, HT isn't rocket science, nor does it have to cost an arm and a leg---especially if you ignore the aforementioned vocal minority. And remember to smile...it's just a silly hobby, after all. :)
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post #3 of 30 Old 05-28-2020, 12:22 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zorba922 View Post

Tekton is a somewhat controversial company. Do a forum search and you'll figure out why.

HINT: If you care about measurements, try to find some of any Tekton speakers. [IMG class=inlineimg]/forum/images/smilies/smile.gif[/IMG]

There are TONS of great speakers between $1K-2K/pr. Nobody dominates that price category, unless you've drunken a particular company's Kool-aid.
You mean like this, on the very model I’m asking about? (https://www.stereophile.com/content/...r-measurements)
Can you name some specific models? That would be helpful. I’ve read and watched reviews of the Impact monitors from most of the well-respected publications and sites and I’ve yet to see any reviewer say they prefer another speaker at that price point. I’m open to that possibility, which is why I made the post.

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post #4 of 30 Old 05-28-2020, 12:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Utopianemo View Post
You mean like this, on the very model I’m asking about? (https://www.stereophile.com/content/...r-measurements)
Can you name some specific models? That would be helpful. I’ve read and watched reviews of the Impact monitors from most of the well-respected publications and sites and I’ve yet to see any reviewer say they prefer another speaker at that price point. I’m open to that possibility, which is why I made the post.
Good catch there. I was probably thinking about their floorstanders.

However, I've known several AVS members who contacted the company for measurements of other models, and had some interesting interactions with the owner/designer. Feel free to PM me.

One thing you have to keep in mind about audio publications (as opposed to some curmudgeonly online blogs) is that they almost never publish any negative reviews, since their livelihood depends on advertiser support (hence they tend to push dubious things like exotic cables). So take them with many grains of salt, and try to read between the lines.

~ Are you a "geek hobbyist" obsessed with squeezing out that last 5-10% improvement? The economy will thank you...especially the Chinese one. Or are you more of a get-set-and-forget "casual user" who simply wants to increase your enjoyment of movies, TV and gaming? Relax, HT isn't rocket science, nor does it have to cost an arm and a leg---especially if you ignore the aforementioned vocal minority. And remember to smile...it's just a silly hobby, after all. :)
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post #5 of 30 Old 05-28-2020, 02:57 PM
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post #6 of 30 Old 05-28-2020, 06:00 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zorba922 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Utopianemo View Post
You mean like this, on the very model I’️m asking about? (https://www.stereophile.com/content/...r-measurements)
Can you name some specific models? That would be helpful. I’️ve read and watched reviews of the Impact monitors from most of the well-respected publications and sites and I’️ve yet to see any reviewer say they prefer another speaker at that price point. I’️m open to that possibility, which is why I made the post.
Good catch there. I was probably thinking about their floorstanders.

However, I've known several AVS members who contacted the company for measurements of other models, and had some interesting interactions with the owner/designer. Feel free to PM me.

One thing you have to keep in mind about audio publications (as opposed to some curmudgeonly online blogs) is that they almost never publish any negative reviews, since their livelihood depends on advertiser support (hence they tend to push dubious things like exotic cables). So take them with many grains of salt, and try to read between the lines.
Yeah, I’m not into the drama. Do you have any actual speaker suggestions?

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post #7 of 30 Old 05-28-2020, 06:00 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sigpig View Post
thanks! I’ll check them out!

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post #8 of 30 Old 05-28-2020, 06:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Utopianemo View Post
Yeah, I’m not into the drama. Do you have any actual speaker suggestions?
Of course, always.

But first, some basic questions:
  1. % music vs HT usage?
  2. Which musical genres?
  3. Listening distance?
  4. Preferred volume levels? (60-75db average, or 80db and up?)
  5. What receiver/amp?
  6. Used with sub or no sub? If sub, which one?
  7. Room dimensions, including open adjacent spaces?
  8. Any WAF (Wife Approval Factor), i.e. aesthetic requirements?

~ Are you a "geek hobbyist" obsessed with squeezing out that last 5-10% improvement? The economy will thank you...especially the Chinese one. Or are you more of a get-set-and-forget "casual user" who simply wants to increase your enjoyment of movies, TV and gaming? Relax, HT isn't rocket science, nor does it have to cost an arm and a leg---especially if you ignore the aforementioned vocal minority. And remember to smile...it's just a silly hobby, after all. :)
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post #9 of 30 Old 05-28-2020, 07:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Utopianemo View Post
Yeah, I’m not into the drama. Do you have any actual speaker suggestions?
I have Tekton Enzo XL currently. Had them about a year.
Ive had a lot of speakers. Tekton are good speakers. Very creative in his designs.

I have no idea about why he doesn't do measurements---I'm sure he did but for some reason hiding the data.

They have energy and the sound bounces pretty good. I have absolutely no complaints.

Before I bought them, I didn't really read the "professional" reviews. Rather, I relied on many "normal" people that have spent a lot of money on many different speakers and they all were very very impressed with a few models that are more expensive than mine especially the Double Impacts at 3K pair.

I wanted to find out for myself and if I wasn't happy I'd pay for the shipping back wasn't a big deal to me. I liked them so kept them.

Check out Zero Fidelity he has a lot of good books for under $2K that probably better than Tekton. I would only get towers from Tekton not the books.

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post #10 of 30 Old 05-28-2020, 08:07 PM
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I cannot speak for the bookshelves either, but I will say I have spoken to some speaker designers before and just really knowledgeable folks that work for companies. Most all very helpful and had suggestions.

The owner at Tekton is a pretty busy guy but he brushed my off of the phone pretty quickly. I simply had questions about some of the speakers and the budget and was just giving him the characteristics I wanted in a speaker. All fair questions in my mind and he just said tell me what you want and I will build it or email me. I said ok I will email and the response was I'm not sure if i will get to the email or not as I'm real busy. I've read some YouTube comments about others awaiting a response for months.

I immediately thought why am I going to spend my hard worked earnings on someone that doesn't seem to care about a potential customer. That pretty much put me off regardless of the speaker at that point. I just didnt want to deal with that if I the speaker wasnt for me.

I did get a response from another local that recently sold the mini lore monitor. This was his response.

Very detailed, excellent frequency response in my small room. Only preferred my klipsch over them because the klipsch are more dynamic.

They do have a trial period so it's better than buying from a 3rd party without a return.


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post #11 of 30 Old 05-28-2020, 09:29 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Zorba922 View Post

But first, some basic questions:
  1. % music vs HT usage? 50/50.
  2. Which musical genres? Everything from the best recorded Classical to 90’s indie hiphop. Electronica, Jazz, Rock, Pipe Organ, 80’s video game music, Choral Chant, and so on.
  3. Listening distance? About 9’.
  4. Preferred volume levels? (60-75db average, or 80db and up?). That’s tough. Probably 75db average, but I also like to crank it every now and again. I’m also big on dynamics.
  5. What receiver/amp? Pioneer SC-95, also using Crown Class D amps for mains, but I’m also looking to upgrade those.
  6. Used with sub or no sub? If sub, which one? I have two 18” Dayton sealed Ultimax subs, driven by a Behringer Inuke 6000dsp.
  7. Room dimensions, including open adjacent spaces? 15’d x 18’w x 8’h
  8. Any WAF (Wife Approval Factor), i.e. aesthetic requirements? No, but they have to sit atop a cabinet at the front of the room.

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post #12 of 30 Old 05-28-2020, 10:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Utopianemo View Post
  1. % music vs HT usage? 50/50.
  2. Which musical genres? Everything from the best recorded Classical to 90’s indie hiphop. Electronica, Jazz, Rock, Pipe Organ, 80’s video game music, Choral Chant, and so on.
  3. Listening distance? About 9’.
  4. Preferred volume levels? (60-75db average, or 80db and up?). That’s tough. Probably 75db average, but I also like to crank it every now and again. I’m also big on dynamics.
  5. What receiver/amp? Pioneer SC-95, also using Crown Class D amps for mains, but I’m also looking to upgrade those.
  6. Used with sub or no sub? If sub, which one? I have two 18” Dayton sealed Ultimax subs, driven by a Behringer Inuke 6000dsp.
  7. Room dimensions, including open adjacent spaces? 15’d x 18’w x 8’h
  8. Any WAF (Wife Approval Factor), i.e. aesthetic requirements? No, but they have to sit atop a cabinet at the front of the room.
Here are some speakers I would look at:
  • Ascend Sierra 2EX
  • Focal Aria 906
  • JBL HDI-1600
  • Revel M106

The last 3 are available at Crutchfield.com which gives you $10 flat rate returns for bookshelf speakers---I'd do a 3 way comparison. The Ascends you'd have to pay return shipping on, which might run $40-90 depending on how far from California you are.

I'd expect the JBL and Revel to be come out on top for sheer dynamics and detail, and perhaps the Ascends and Focals if you are more of an emotional listener than an analytical one. (Might want to throw in the Wharfedale Evo 4.2 and/or Linton as well if you're an emotional listener.)

YMMV of course.

~ Are you a "geek hobbyist" obsessed with squeezing out that last 5-10% improvement? The economy will thank you...especially the Chinese one. Or are you more of a get-set-and-forget "casual user" who simply wants to increase your enjoyment of movies, TV and gaming? Relax, HT isn't rocket science, nor does it have to cost an arm and a leg---especially if you ignore the aforementioned vocal minority. And remember to smile...it's just a silly hobby, after all. :)
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post #13 of 30 Old 05-29-2020, 06:17 AM
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if you have subs already: may want to add jbl 705p to that list
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post #14 of 30 Old 05-29-2020, 06:35 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Zorba922 View Post
  • Ascend Sierra 2EX
  • Focal Aria 906
  • JBL HDI-1600
  • Revel M106

The last 3 are available at Crutchfield.com which gives you $10 flat rate returns for bookshelf speakers---I'd do a 3 way comparison. The Ascends you'd have to pay return shipping on, which might run $40-90 depending on how far from California you are.

I'd expect the JBL and Revel to be come out on top for sheer dynamics and detail, and perhaps the Ascends and Focals if you are more of an emotional listener than an analytical one. (Might want to throw in the Wharfedale Evo 4.2 and/or Linton as well if you're an emotional listener.)

YMMV of course.
Much appreciated! Out of curiosity, do you have any thoughts on the JBL HDI-1600’s compared to the similarly priced JBL 4312G, or others in that family?

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post #15 of 30 Old 05-29-2020, 09:07 AM
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Thanks for posting this. I enjoyed reading the Audioholics review by James Larson, as the varying music choices & measurements were interesting, and I like the way the reviewer writes re specs, measurements and conclusions &c.
But holy moley!...they jumped over $1000. in the last 16 months !?!?

Last edited by M2609; 05-29-2020 at 09:14 AM.
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post #16 of 30 Old 05-29-2020, 09:38 AM
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For a similar size bookshelf at the same price point with even greater dynamics the PSA MTM-210 would have more impact than the Tekton Impact.
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post #17 of 30 Old 05-29-2020, 09:40 AM
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You mean like this, on the very model I’m asking about? (https://www.stereophile.com/content/...r-measurements)
Can you name some specific models? That would be helpful. I’ve read and watched reviews of the Impact monitors from most of the well-respected publications and sites and I’ve yet to see any reviewer say they prefer another speaker at that price point. I’m open to that possibility, which is why I made the post.
Well the problem with Impacts is right there in the data, isn't it? Superb on-axis response, catastrophic beaming mess the moment you exit 0 degrees vertical or horizontal. If you're only ever going to sit in the dead centered sweet spot in a favorable acoustic space then yeah, I can believe they're great. Personally I prefer more flexibility and a smooth transition to off-axis response. Take a look at the Revel Performa3 M106?
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post #18 of 30 Old 05-29-2020, 09:42 AM
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I don't know if you mean that Salk's price jumped $1000 or not, but when Phil was selling them he was practically giving them away. Even at the end I think Phil's price went up a few hundred dollars. When Salk started selling them the price went up again to where they think the profit margins need to be.
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post #19 of 30 Old 05-29-2020, 12:53 PM - Thread Starter
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Well the problem with Impacts is right there in the data, isn't it? Superb on-axis response, catastrophic beaming mess the moment you exit 0 degrees vertical or horizontal. If you're only ever going to sit in the dead centered sweet spot in a favorable acoustic space then yeah, I can believe they're great. Personally I prefer more flexibility and a smooth transition to off-axis response. Take a look at the Revel Performa3 M106?
That’s strange. Stereophile, Sound & Vision, Home Theater Review, Secrets of Home Theater and High Fidelity, and the Audiophiliac have all reviewed these speakers and not one of them mentioned them being a “catastrophic beaming mess the moment you exit 0 degrees vertical or horizontal“.

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Originally Posted by Utopianemo View Post
That’s strange. Stereophile, Sound & Vision, Home Theater Review, Secrets of Home Theater and High Fidelity, and the Audiophiliac have all reviewed these speakers and not one of them mentioned them being a “catastrophic beaming mess the moment you exit 0 degrees vertical or horizontal“.
And now you see why the objective and subjective audio crowds always get into fights. If you want the Impacts, by all means have at it, but there's a reason they're controversial around here and the Stereophile measurements spell it out.
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post #21 of 30 Old 05-29-2020, 03:22 PM - Thread Starter
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And now you see why the objective and subjective audio crowds always get into fights.
I would assume it’s at least partly due to the unmitigated arrogance of someone like yourself, who looks at numbers and charts and thinks they know more about a speaker they’ve never heard than five or six people who review speakers for a living, and ACTUALLY listened to the speaker in question. I totally get that.
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post #22 of 30 Old 05-29-2020, 03:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Utopianemo View Post
I would assume it’s at least partly due to the unmitigated arrogance of someone like yourself, who looks at numbers and charts and thinks they know more about a speaker they’ve never heard than five or six people who review speakers for a living, and ACTUALLY listened to the speaker in question. I totally get that.
Then buy the stupid speaker and stop wasting everyone else's time.
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post #23 of 30 Old 05-29-2020, 04:02 PM
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Originally Posted by M2609 View Post
Thanks for posting this. I enjoyed reading the Audioholics review by James Larson, as the varying music choices & measurements were interesting, and I like the way the reviewer writes re specs, measurements and conclusions &c.
But holy moley!...they jumped over $1000. in the last 16 months !?!?

As Spidacat noted, when Dennis Murphy (who owned Philharmonic Audio) sold them through his company, he was essentially selling them for the cost of their parts. In fact, BMR's are now available in DIY kits, and the costs of unassembled kits is essentially the same as what Dennis was selling them for.



Jim Salk (whom Dennis has worked with for years) was very upfront about the fact that Salk would have to increase the prices when they took over. For one thing, Salk gives you incredibly beautiful custom cabinets (which they did for a premium even back when Dennis sold them). For two, Salk actually wants to at least break even on selling them, if not make a small profit.


For what it's worth, Audioholics is in the middle of releasing a series of videos on direct vs. wide directivity speakers. The BMR has featured heavily in these videos, repeatedly being called out as one of, if not the, best measuring wide directivity speaker they've reviewed. And when they get to "recommended" speakers in the wide directivity family, the BMR is the first listed, even at the current Salk prices (note that Matt is a separate reviewer from the one who did the original review you referenced above . . . so this is two separate guys at Audioholics singing their praises).


And just to add to this, I was fortunate enough to get my hands on one of the last sets of BMRs Dennis sold. These are amazing speakers for the $1,500 I paid for them (including shipping), and I don't believe Salk is remotely overcharging for them (especially given the custom cabinets you get from them). I have never heard the Tektons, so I have nothing to say about whether the BMRs are better, worse, or just different. But I can definitely say anyone shopping in their price range should give them some consideration.


If you want a lot more insight into them, the Philharmonic thread here on AVS has a couple years worth of testimonials. You can also search for old threads on places like Reddit, and see the level of esteem they've always held among those who have owned or heard them.
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post #24 of 30 Old 05-29-2020, 04:24 PM - Thread Starter
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Then buy the stupid speaker and stop wasting everyone else's time.
First, I sincerely appreciate your recommendation of the Revels, and I will check them out. Second, Really? You respond to my post with snide and arrogant remarks (And a recommendation, again thank you), and you think I’m wasting your time and everyone else’s?

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post #25 of 30 Old 05-29-2020, 04:35 PM
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I don't know much about alternatives in that price range, but I would be really skeptical of a company that wouldn't release measurements of their products. I'm an avid backpacker, and an English company PHD, makes down filled gear/garments that look very nice and get good reviews, but unlike every other down gear manufacturer, they refuse to publish how much down is in any of their pieces. The only reason I can think of is so you can't compare it to competitors, but it's a total turn off to me.


Of course unlike down filled gear, speaker specs don't necessarily mean a ton. What's the return policy? Can you try them out and return them? (I don't believe in speaker break in or cables either)

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post #26 of 30 Old 05-29-2020, 04:38 PM - Thread Starter
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And just to add to this, I was fortunate enough to get my hands on one of the last sets of BMRs Dennis sold. These are amazing speakers for the $1,500 I paid for them (including shipping), and I don't believe Salk is remotely overcharging for them (especially given the custom cabinets you get from them). I have never heard the Tektons, so I have nothing to say about whether the BMRs are better, worse, or just different. But I can definitely say anyone shopping in their price range should give them some consideration.


If you want a lot more insight into them, the Philharmonic thread here on AVS has a couple years worth of testimonials. You can also search for old threads on places like Reddit, and see the level of esteem they've always held among those who have owned or heard them.
Thanks for the heads up. I didn't mention it to sigpig, but his BMR link sent me on a whole rabbit trail of DIY solutions at Meniscus, including the Statement monitors. The BMRs are really tempting, although as much as I've wanted some beautiful Salk speakers in the past, I'd probably do the DIY thing.
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post #27 of 30 Old 05-29-2020, 06:24 PM
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That’s strange. Stereophile, Sound & Vision, Home Theater Review, Secrets of Home Theater and High Fidelity, and the Audiophiliac have all reviewed these speakers and not one of them mentioned them being a “catastrophic beaming mess the moment you exit 0 degrees vertical or horizontal“.
I cannot comment on the other magazines, but Stereophile's review clearly shows “catastrophic beaming mess the moment you exit 0 degrees vertical or horizontal“. Look at figure 4, at 30 degrees and above, directivity is clearly a mess to put it mildly. As to the vertical directivity, you can see in Fig. 5 it is horrendous, and JA even explains that the design's use of two woofers is spaced too far apart and "leads to major cancellations in the midrange above and below the response on the central tweeter axis, which again appears as a straight line. The Impact Monitor's vertical radiation pattern suggests that the speaker needs to be listened to within a narrow window centered on the central tweeter. So, it is reasonable to argue that the speaker's very poor horizontal dispersion requires that, at the very least, be listened to nearfield (9' is not nearfield) to mitigate the negative effects of its design's first reflections (otherwise, off axis sound reflecting from the walls will blend poorly with the speaker's on axis sound, and as Dr. Toole's research clearly indicates this leads to poor subjective performance). Further, JA's measurements and comments clearly show the speaker's sound dramatically deteriorates when listened outside the narrow window centered on the central tweeter.

However if the sound works for you, that is all that matters.
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post #28 of 30 Old 05-30-2020, 08:56 AM
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Thanks for posting this. I enjoyed reading the Audioholics review by James Larson, as the varying music choices & measurements were interesting, and I like the way the reviewer writes re specs, measurements and conclusions &c.
But holy moley!...they jumped over $1000. in the last 16 months !?!?
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Originally Posted by Spidacat View Post
I don't know if you mean that Salk's price jumped $1000 or not, ~
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Originally Posted by overg View Post
As Spidacat noted, when Dennis Murphy (who owned Philharmonic Audio) sold them through his company, he was essentially selling them for the cost of their parts. ~ For one thing, Salk gives you incredibly beautiful custom cabinets (which they did for a premium even back when Dennis sold them). For two, Salk actually wants to at least break even on selling them, if not make a small profit. ~ And just to add to this, I was fortunate enough to get my hands on one of the last sets of BMRs Dennis sold. These are amazing speakers for the $1,500 I paid for them (including shipping), ~ But I can definitely say anyone shopping in their price range should give them some consideration. ~
Interesting to read about and thanks very much for your comments and information; I appreciate you sharing it.
Price-wise, I was merely commenting on the difference in the listed Salk price vs. the Audioholics price of January 2019.
Anyways, yes, they appear via reviews and measurements to be super amazing speakers.
And thanks for clarifying info.

salksound.com :
"Price $2395 per pair in black satin or white finish
$2595 per pair in a standard veneer"


audiohoics.com :
"Review Date: January 23, 2019 00:00
MSRP: $ 1,350/pair - base price (black cabinet), $1,600 in Custom SalkSound finishes in maple, mahogany, cherry, or walnut, $1,800 in furniture grade finish."
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post #29 of 30 Old 05-30-2020, 12:11 PM
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Much appreciated! Out of curiosity, do you have any thoughts on the JBL HDI-1600’s compared to the similarly priced JBL 4312G, or others in that family?
The new HDI line from JBL is indeed very interesting but the 1600, especially, would have me considering what I was driving them with as they are 4 ohm and 85db sensitivity which is quite low compared to most JBLs and to the JBL HDI towers.

If using an AVR without pre outs it would give me pause as it might turn out that I'd need an outboard amp.

But at your volume levels perhaps not; $10/box returns at Crutchfield within 60 days if not happy.

Review.

https://www.audiosciencereview.com/f...-review.12477/

Other reviews including Revel but not Tekton.

https://www.audiosciencereview.com/f...eakerTestData/

Here's a review of the other JBLs you mentioned which I was not familiar with.

Odd design, for sure but this guy liked them...placed on their sides.

https://hometheaterhifi.com/reviews/...peaker-review/

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post #30 of 30 Old 05-30-2020, 12:59 PM
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And now you see why the objective and subjective audio crowds always get into fights. If you want the Impacts, by all means have at it, but there's a reason they're controversial around here and the Stereophile measurements spell it out.
The measurements are not nearly as bad as you imply. The tweeter beams above 15 KHz, but that's true of many speakers. Below that, they have better than average dispersion in the horizontal plane. There is lobing in the vertical plane which extends somewhat lower than most MTMs due to the relatively large distance between the woofers. But if you select the right stand that puts the tweeters at roughly ear level, you won't notice that unless you stand up.

I was very skeptical of these speakers when I first saw them, but the measurements demonstrate that they are a valid design.

Still, if it were me, I'd rather spend $2k/pair to get one high quality midwoofer and one high quality tweeter, rather than 9 cheapo drivers. Other than the sheer novelty of it, I don't see a particular advantage to this design. But it is not an objectively poor design.
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