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  Review: Dahlquist DQ-10 Speaker
Hello fellow audiophiles, I want to share with you my listening experiences of Jon Dahlquist's complete speaker system.

Many times you read reviews of the DQ-10 speakers and they most always comment on the lack of low-end and power hunger of the speakers. While true, this does not provide a true representation of what the complete Dahlquist speaker system is capable of. For those familiar with the Fulton Mod-J system, it would be like critiquing this system without its base module.

The complete Dahlquist speaker system consist of the famous DQ-10 main speakers; the DQ-1W subwoofer, the DQ-LP1 electronic crossover (and DQ-ST10 speaker stands for proper main speaker positioning).

The DQ-10 is a 5-way, open baffle, time-aligned speaker; the DQ-1W is a passive 13" subwoofer; and the DQ-LP1 is an electronic crossover that features a passive, distortion free high-pass section and a freq/gain adjustable low-pass section.

Several years after initial introduction, Dahlquist modified the main speaker design to mirror image the left and right speakers. This provided symmetry and widened the soundstage even further. If you are looking to buy a set, this is the version to get!

After 30 years of ownership the Dahlquists system still takes my breath away. The sound stage is extremely wide, I can close my eyes and picture the musicians playing, with each instrument precisely located across the front of my listening room. The accuracy and clarity is stunning, piano notes are clear and true; symbols ring with purity; acoustic guitar strings sound crisply plucked; and drum beats are powerful and tight.

The 5-way crossover network is the reason for the speaker's power hunger, it has several power resistors in it that really heat up. But what you get in return for this design is accuracy (purity of note) and clarity (distortion free) of sound because each speaker driver only has to work in a limited frequency range. This is especially true of the DQ-10 woofer driver which only has to work down to 60hz with the electronic crossover in the setup.

Because of its power hunger, it is extremely important to drive the Dahlquist system with ample power. I drive the main speakers with a Bryston 4B and the subwoofer with a Bryston 3B in mono mode, a total of 800 watts. What is important for any amplifier to achieve powerful and tight base is to not be current limited. This is the case, as with the Brystons, when the amplifier doubles its output power output when the speaker impedance is halved (i.e. 200 watts @ 8 ohms, 400 watts @ 4 ohms). Plus, the amplifiers must have a high dampening factor (i.e 500+) to ensure that the speaker driver has a single, fast excursion for a drum beat, without ringing.

With this setup, there is no one who would say the Dahlquist system lacks low-end. The frequency range is very wide, something like 25hz - 30khz. The adjustability of the DQ-LP1 crossover allows for completely seemless integration of the subwoofer into the mains. You cannot tell that the low base notes come from a seperate speaker box from the mains!

Given today's market prices, you can acquire a nice set of DQ-10s for $500, a DQ-1W for $200, and a DQ-LP1 for $300 = $1000 for the complete system. I venture to say that you cannot buy another full range speaker system for this price that will beat the Dahlquist system. You would have to spend multiples of that price to try to come close.

I certainly recommend them!

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by Jjh92 on 10-19-07 
  Follow ups
Click title to read one, or click date to read all below it.

10-19-07   Jjh92, i have had a pair of dq-10's since 1983. i ha ...   M297904

10-19-07   I once went to a friends house to hear his system that ...   Manny55

10-19-07   I have a pair in excellent condition that i sort of dis ...   Bigtee

10-19-07   It was the dq-10 that got me into audio about 27 years ...   Saygrr

10-20-07   When they started producing a mirror imaged version the ...   Muzcal

10-20-07   I had a pair for around 3 years...many years ago...i ag ...   Sogood51

10-22-07   The dq 10 is what got me into higher end audio 30 years ...   Terracat

11-10-07   muzcal 10-20-07 i also have a ...   Johnnyb53

11-16-07   I have been using dq10s since 1977 when i purchased the ...   Naturephoto1

12-09-07   I just purchased a pair at a swap meet for little to no ...   Gtsdarts

12-10-07   If any of you were to invest in a pair today would you ...   Fishboat

01-03-08   review: dahlquist dq-10 speaker ...   Johnnyb53

01-11-08   I had this system, too, many years ago only driven by 1 ...   Dazone

01-14-08   Does anyone know how the dq-28's compare to the dq-10, ...   Clio09

01-16-08   Very right on review! nice too see such interest in dal ...   Blue_strat

01-20-08   I heard jon is not doing so well. i did not know he was ...   Saygrr

01-28-08   Thanks saygr. i understand jon was in a car crash back ...   Blue_strat

02-24-09   I just picked up a pair of original dq 10 (mirror image ...   Bbro

02-25-09   I want to add my own recent experience with a different ...   Roxy54

02-27-09   When considering older equipments , we must consider th ...   Manny55

01-17-11   I have a very modest system that my dq-10s are the star ...   Pabs911

07-19-11   I remember the spring of 1976 and i was listening to on ...   Fhet

01-24-13   I purchased a pair of dq-10 speakers back in 1980. at ...   Dlkramer

01-28-13   Thanks to the three previous posters. i was just checki ...   Saygrr

01-31-13   I have a pair of dq-10's i bought about 4-5 months ago ...   Xiekitchen

01-31-13   Has anyone replaced the 4" phillips midrange cone ...   Xiekitchen

02-01-13   I got a great deal on a pair of the dahlquist dq10's wi ...   Russmaleartist

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