Yes. I heard them Thursday in one of the (at least three) rooms they were playing. I wasn't impressed (playing at very low volumes with some light jazz).
Saw them today in another room (both rooms at the St. Tropez). Totally different story!
The were playing at decent volume with some solid music.
These are GREAT speakers!
The mind blowing part of this was the premiere session bass player Abraham Laboriel who hooked up and started jamming right through the Gilmores!
I've played bass through a dual 15 inch cabinet and have blown driver cones with excessive transients.
Mr. Laboriel was slapping away at his five string Yamaha (think Paul Simon's "Graceland" style playing) with no ill effects.
The (big) Gilmores need lots of space from the listener (about 15 feet) for driver blend. Give them the room and they sound wonderful! Smaller models might not need as much room.
They were driven by Atma-sphere monos.
I missed the live bass performance, but what you say jibes with my impression of the Gilmore-based systems as sounding more like a PA than like a stereo.
Maybe it's just me -- I love planars and panel speakers, but I was underwhelmed.
I heard the smaller ones at moderate volume and found them fatiguing and a bit shouty in the midrange.
In the larger room, the build quality reminded me of shop class in junior high school as I watched Mr Gilmore and a "visitor" tapping their feet in apparent joy and enthusiasm.
Some of you may know that the cult of Linn used to suggest this type of behaviour in dealer sales training seminars.
I found it about as convincing as watching "tourists" "winning" at three card monte and almost as cheesey as the ads.
CW: Let me guess; You live in New England?
I thought the Gilmores construction was first rate.
It would be hard to flub a design this simple.
I did think the black metal frame holding the ribbon could have been gold/chrome plated, however.
The sound of the big panels was noticably disjoined if sitting too close but merged nicely at distance.
And are you saying a manufacturer shouldn't be enthusiastic about their product at a trade show?
Come back to 'Vegas. It's sunny and 65 degrees today.
It is the ultimate test of whether sex sells. They were garbage.
I respectfully disagree...
I am not in New England, I am in NYC where the wind chill is well below zero. But even 65 and sunny wouldn't lure me back to hear those speakers.
The "london" in my User ID comes from London, England and the English word for Mr Gilmore is "spiv".
With or without gold, chrome or even platinum plating, I thought the metal around the ribbons looked uneven and sloppily rendered, hence my remark about build quality.
Where is all the hype coming from?
I thought this was a community of enthusiasts sharing their honest opinions, not a bulletin board for PR meisters seeking free advertising.
Even sex might not be able to sell these things.
Cwlondon- I agree with everything you've said minus that last statement, have you ever seen Ron Jeremy? I rest my case :o)
Are you trying to say the speakers sounded dead as in Ron Jeremy being dead.
He may have died with a smile on his face. Although what he died from isn't pretty.
Steveallen- I think you are mistaken Ron Jeremy is alive and well- I think your reffering to John Holmes ;) Now back to the Gilmore's! heh heh
Tireguy, you're right. John Holmes is dead. He was buried face-down over a well.
i heard they buried john homes 6 feet, 10" down :-D
all this talk about the gilmores just proves that the marketing campaign (i.e. boobs) worked. ---lots of other speakers out there. (no, i haven't heard them. fwiw, what the boobs detract all of you from is the fact that these speakers are as get-out ugly as can be).
If your referring to me as a "PR meister" and not someone sharing their "honest opinion" then do what the sandwich says.
I was at CES and THE show for four days. I agree with those who praised the demo with Laboriel. The guy is incredible.
That being said, bass guitars have four strings, with the lowest being E1 at 41.2 Hertz. Two recent developments are the five and six string basses, both
having a low B string ringing out at 30.9 Hertz and proves nothing about the true deep bass response of the Gilmore nor the phase and linearity. Only that it allows an instrument to be plugged in and plays at a reasonable level with a 220 watt tube amp. Many commercial products including speaker builders (do it yourself project) achieves superior SPL’s at a fraction of the price.http://www.core-sound.com/bottom-article.html
As an aside, this was absolutely the ugliest speaker shown at any CES in the last ten years. At a selling price of $17,000.00, it should score somewhere near the fit and finish of Wilson or Avalon. In reality it looked more like a garage product. This level of workmanship might be acceptable if the product produced a break through in technology, making the appearance less a factor. In fact, the overall design is heavily borrowed from the Carver Amazing. Those who are more impressed with the Gilmore than I may purchase the “original article” at approximately 70% off by following an ad such as this.http://www.integracoustics.com/MUG/MUG/buysell/messages/2197.html
The original Carver was superior workmanship, lacking the spotty row of dents where the ribbon was fastened to the face. The shape of the Gilmore was touted as WAF friendly. Making me wonder if any of these guys are married. The overall shape, color and appearance would offend all but the most insensitive male and send any female I have ever known into a frenzy.
I heard one exhibitor mention the Gilmore 2 and described the four woofers as “burners” on a Corian stove top with the ribbon serving as the “control“ unit. After overhearing that comment I could not get that image out of my head.
Performance was decent at best, but what keeps going through my mind is the Vandersteen 5 A, Magnaplanar 20.1, Dynaudio Confidence C 4 and Wilson Sophia, all of look and sound better and offer heritage, proven customer service, good resale and backing from companies that have a track record.
Several of these (re: Vandersteen and Maggie) cost significantly less than the Gilmore while offering more. Enough less in fact to fund an audiophile grade pair of mono block amps to power them up.
For those who can ignore the mediocre sound, the $17,000.00 price tag, shared heritage to the Carver and are willing to look at possibly the ugliest speaker in the history of audio, this is just what you’ve been looking for.
I thought the Gilmore's looked great and sounded great. My two audiophile buddies did not like the sound as much as I did, and I did not ask their opinion of the look. As best I can assess, these speakers evoke widely varying opinions.
Re "evoke widely varying opinions"
That seems to be correct -- the effusive praise of their marketers and the perplexed criticism of audiophiles.
CW: Let me guess; You are a pretzel maker?
Well, I guess this discussion disproves the old saying "Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder but everyone knows butt-ugly!" Never having heard these, I would suggest- They do look like kitchen counters with a built in cook-top.
While the Gilmore's were not exactly to my taste in sound, looks and price, it's probably not fair to totally indict them just based on their nascent performance in less than optimal show conditions. They don't seem near optimally suited for the small to modest size rooms they were shown in. On top of that, I doubt that they were all broken in.
Nevertheless, the looks and price issues are pretty straightforward. Perhaps a center channel version melded with their large models for the front channels and small pair for rears would be a nice multi-channel setup that could be offered at a package discount. Soundwise, I think they would do well in a home theater because, among other HT strengths (such as larger sweet spot, dynamics, etc.), they wouldn't require a sub. Also, most true Home Theaters are dark, so looks may be less of an issue.
Anyway, my suggestions may be hogwash, but my real point is to suggest not being too heavy handed with the evaluations on such a new company and product. I know it's very difficult to start a business, and certainly it's to our our best interest as hobbyist to inspire company's who are trying to produce products for our hobby -- even if they do look like kitchen counter tops/surfboards and may not be world-beaters for everyone as they over-enthusiastically imply.
They were nice for accuracy. They have enough bass for those who do not demand the high volume of moving air to give that palpable kick. They are not going to fatigue you over the years, even though they do not have that forward impressive sound that a dozen others lead with.
I heard the Gilmore speakers over Christmas at Gilmore's house.
I also heard them at CES and THE Show.
I will address a few of the above issues:
One reason Gilmore speakers look the way they do is because they are using Corian. What drove them to use Corian??? Do they have no sense of taste? No. Do they own the company that makes Corian? Nope. The reason for Corian is the material for all practical purposes does not resonate when used in this application. It's resonance point is 8hz. [email protected]
- A non-member of Audiogon posted:
'Performance was decent at best, but what keeps going through my mind is the Vandersteen 5 A, Magnaplanar 20.1, Dynaudio Confidence C 4 and Wilson Sophia, all of look and sound better and offer heritage, proven customer service, good resale and backing from companies that have a track record.
Several of these (re: Vandersteen and Maggie) cost significantly less than the Gilmore while offering more. Enough less in fact to fund an audiophile grade pair of mono block amps to power them up.'
All I can say is:
To get sound even remotely close to the Gilmore's with:
Maggie 20.1's - You have to use a subwoofer. You have to use INSANE powered amps costing MEGA BUCKS. You also need to do aftermarket crossovers and wiring. Doing all of this, you are spending more than the Gilmore 2 speakers. Gilmore 2 speakers can be powered by 60 watt tubes. Maggies do not have CLOSE to the dynamics the Gimore speakers have. I owned the 3.6's for several years and loved them dearly. In my mind there is little contest between the Gilmore speakers and ANY Maggies I have ever heard in ANY setup.
Vandersteen 5A - I will readily admit this is my favorite box speaker. A good friend of mine just bought a pair. Hate to say it though... with a nice finish AND crossover, these retail for over $17k. Pretty close to the Gilmore Model 2's and more than the Gilmore model 3's. The Gilmore speakers are very different from the 5A's. VERY different. I like them both... But the Gilmore's really have a transparency and insane lack of distortion that the 5A's do not quite have. The Gilmore speakers can also be played quite loud. 5A's can be played lound but they reach a point of being pushed too hard much sooner than the Gilmore's.
Wilson Sophia and Dynaudio Confidence C4: Nice box speakers, but I would say it is not in the same league as the Gilmore's. Sorry, if you are comparing these speakers to the Gilmore's, you did not listen long enough to the Gilmore's or long enough to these speakers. I know a guy who has the Dynaudio speakers, and he listened with me to the Gilmore's extensively. He got home and it PAINED him when he flipped on his system.
Anyway, the only flaw with the Gilmore speakers is that you REALLY have to be in the optimal listening position to really hear how they sound.
I must run.
-it took me a while to figure it out. Mark Gilmore had told me several times on the phone that the speakers need 50 hours of breakin to sound right, and this was proven at the show. When the speakers arrived, they had 10 hours on them. Shipping damage of the Fed Ex variety prevented the speakers from getting any more time before the show, and it was a miracle that they had even the ten hours on them.
So the first day of the show, using our MA-1s, the speakers did OK in the mids and highs, being as revealing as anything I had heard, but the bass did not make it. We also had a room problem- too much volume and the room came apart. It was easy to get too much volume, as close to the speaker you could not tell how loud you were playing the system, since there were none of the usual loudness cues to clue you in. Further back it was obvious.
The second day the speaker was a little better, but still not doing it right until the end of the day. After hours, I played a musical project I had been working on for the last year at a serious but not mind-breaking volume. My Korg Mono/Poly can do some deep bass that easily rivals Moog Tauras pedals and I was interested to see how the Gilmores could shake the place up. I let the whole CD play. By the end of the CD, I had 6 companions that showed up and listened through the whole thing without complaint. It was also nice because it was helpful in getting reactions out of people with regards to the CD. It will be ready for release in a couple of months. The Gilmores played the bass line easily, BTW.
On the third day we used the MA-2s. Also Abraham graced us with his appearance. What a wonderful person to meet. He is very gracious, and quite learned. At this point the speakers finally were really playing the bass, but it was also apparent that there was a standing wave in the room that we were not going to be able to solve. So as a result there was no real bass in the center of the first two rows of chairs. The room continues to be a major influence in the system; no technology I have seen solves that.
Abraham was delighted with the way the speakers presented the sound. As a bass player myself, I can tell you that your location with respect to the speaker is a huge deal on how it sounds to you and how the amp interacts with the instrument. With a planar speaker, this no longer matters. All of a sudden Abraham was able to play the bass without worrying about where the bass amp was as the sound was the same anywhere he stood. This made it more about the music and less about the gear. What was a big deal as far as the speaker was concerned is that it was impossible to damage the speaker with the MA-2s while a very active and talented bass player provided the input. No chance of fried mid or treble drivers due to overdriving the amps- the ribbons handle more power then the MA-2 can generate.
On the fourth and fifth days of THE Show, the speaker was finally blending the bass with the same speed and agility that hallmarked the ribbon unit from the beginning. Despite the MSB CD player's phenomenal playback, it proved no match for the SOTA/Triplanar/Helicon combo. It was nice to play LPs that I have heard for years and note things in them I have not heard before. The highs (as long as we did not set the room off) were easy, relaxed, focused and coherent: a pleasing combination of speed and laid back character all at once. Nice for music.
Of course, shows are terrible places to audition gear. If it sounds good, that's OK, if it does not that really doesn't mean a thing. However I've been doing these shows for 15 years now, with a variety of speakers. Based on that experience the Gilmore proved an impressive debut.
I know what my amps and preamps sound like, and its not by chance that I use recordings that can shut most systems down in a heartbeat. I like to see what a system can do with demanding material. Although I am a two channel geek with all the tube recording and playback gear anyone could hope for, this does not mean that I am above using some serious rockin' stuff as reference. Better that then having to saw my leg off if forced to listen to Diana Krull once more. Frankly, I'm a bit of a snob (like most audiogeekphiles) about the music I listen to- some of which I have the advantage of having recorded myself.
I can't tell you how often people with duck in, look at things and leave. There's lots of tire kickers out there, which is fine. I've seen a lot of controversy about this speaker, lots of it aimed at Mark Gilmore, who has had a lot of things said about him by people on this and other forums who have had no communication with Mark at all. I call him on the phone, or email him if I have questions. Seems like the sporting thing to do. Anyway, my point is that at any room at a show, if you want to find out what a system does you'll have to do more then duck in. You'd better bring a recording you know very well, and if you only play 2 or 3 cuts I seriously doubt that you are going to learn much about any system. I find that seperate recordings should be used to determine things like depth, width, and imaging in the soundstage, still others for bass extension, more for bass impact, highs and so on. Oh yes (sigh) let's not forget the female vocals with light jazz. Whatever. King Crimson is more my style, but this, for the time being, is still America :)
What I am trying to say is that I have experience with the show conditions, the gear and the recordings that allowed me to satisfy my curiosity about the Gilmores. I really do feel that I am not going out on a limb in saying that time will demonstrate that the Gilmore raises the bar for all planar speakers. In addition to being musical and full range, it is also very easy to drive. During the entire show we never clipped the amps at any time. On the 3rd day, we had a guy come in after hours and play the system at 115 db! Despite our dismay, the amplifiers lounged through without a hint of stress. A planar speaker that is finally easy on tubes, *full range* yet capable of serious dynamic range. Not something you see everyday. In fact, its the only speaker like it.
115dB would of course affect your hearing. How on earth one could claim to make any judgement about sound quality with music played that loud escapes me.
I'd be more convinced if this wasn't another riff by someone with something to gain.
There is no dobt in my mind these Gilmore speakers can play 115db @ 1 meter.
A planar speaker it is not. At least not in the traditional sense of the word. Four 12" woofers do not planar equal.
As for the continued touting of their 115db output, I hardly see the point. If loud is what you want, it can be achieved for a LOT less money. A pair of Altec Voice The Theaters would get you there and STILL look better.
The consensus amongst the audiophile crowd who AREN'T personal friends of Mr. Gilmore or business associates who stand to gain monetarily from the sale of these monstrosities, is that they sound "okay" but do NOTHING to justify their high cost. And...of course...they look like a cooktop. For that money, I'd take a nice 48 or 60" Viking Range any day.
I count myself in the "audiophile camp", not being a friend of Mr. Gilmore or someone financially dependent on his success.
I think these speakers are more than "O. K." but do agree that these, and most hi-end products, are grossly overpriced.
I laugh when I see Wilson and Alon speakers costing as much as a Ferrari.
Ten years ago or so $8000 was really pushing the cost ceiling. Today, this is considered mid-range.
I'd like to see a manufacturer try to justify the prices they charge with a cost analysis.
The mind-set today is: "Why do something if it doesn't put a Porche in the garage of my house on the hill?".
Give us poor music lovers a break!
My wife and I heard the larger model displayed at the St Tropez. To me they did sound pretty good. They certainly go loud without compressing and at the distance we listened, they were coherent enough, and the truth of timbre was pretty good too, but(and it is a BIG one) the looks are far too industrial. I'm a fan of big speakers(I think the Apogee Diva is elegant despite being sort of avantegarde in appearance and I think the Maggie 3.6 and 20.1 are lovely) but these babies are badly in need of an extreme makeover. If they looked more like the lovely Linda O'Neil I'd think you'd have a hit!
Sorry to disappoint you folks. First off, we were in the back room when that dude showed up and played the system at such a volume. However, For the record, temporary exposure to 115 db does not damage hearing unless your ears have some previous damage. I hope that you will re-read my previous post and see that 115 sound pressures were NOT used during my consideration of the speaker.
For your money, you could get a cooktop but I don't see how you would be able to play music with that :)
Some people don't think of the speaker as a planar speaker, but it most definately is. The way you can tell is that it really makes no difference how close to the speaker you are- the volume you get from it seems the same at any distance in the room. The only speakers I have seen do that are planars.
As for 'standing to profit': for the record, although I have known Mark for close to ten years, and found him to be one of the nicer, straight-shooting guys you could hope to meet in this hobby, I have no interests in the speaker whatsoever. Ya know, all you have to do is ask either me or Mark by email rather then have to drag this stuff out ad nauseum just to find out something that a simple question on the email would answer. I have to say (again) I have seen all sorts of stuff said about Mark on this and other forums, and from talking to him, I know that not one of those individuals *ever* called or emailed Mark to ask him *anything*. Sorry to say this, but if you want to be a troll, go ahead and repeat the same behaviour. If not, call him or email him and bring this stuff up with him. You will find him to be a fine gentleman.
Over the years, a lot of people have told me that they 'don't care what it looks like as long as it sounds good'. I have found that generally that is not actually the case, but I have also found that, at least in the case of the gear I make, that when the form follows the function it is easier to build a higher performing product.
Its been about a week and a half since CES ended and we had to pack up. In the meantime, it occurred to me that a lot of people have asked me what I thought about the speaker and how it sounded. It seemed appropriate to put my thoughts down on paper, so to speak, as most people have no idea what the Gilmore is like. I have to say I was very curious as well. Although disappointing on the first two days as I mentioned previously, this was the result if inadequate break-in. Afterwords the speaker did the job right.Anyway, since I had been thinking about all the people that asked my opinion I thought I would offer it. I hope that I have not offended anyone by making these points.
Not at allm Atmasphere. Although some hear are suspicious of anonymous shilling, no way could you be considered anonymous. Also some pretty heavy hype from the marketing dept came through here, as well. But all viewpoints are welcome IMO, and you are right. Ask the man if you have a question. Unfortunately, some initial questions seem to have been answered in a less than accurate fashion. And I think the point about the cooktop comments is that at the asking prices, you can buy a universally admired more conventional speaker (Vandy 5As) and a pro stove. If Corian is the key in terms of its performance, than I for one am OK with that, but what about using solid colors?
What Mark tells me is that there are dozens of colors to choose from. They way I understand it, the infamous ad that has been so effective and controversial is a photo of a prototype, hence the blue color. If you look at some of the photos that Albert Porter took, you will see one photo of the equipment stand in the Glacier room. In front of the stand are 5 Golden Ear Awards, which are sitting on square blocks of Corian, which are some of the color samples Mark brought to the show. I figured they would make handy bases...
I'm getting mine in black.
Mark of course tried wood and wood products, but none of them would control resonace properly. The Corian allowed for resonace control to 8Hz (an octave below the passband of the speaker) and one of the country's largest Corian machining plants is very close by so it seemed a simple choice. He explored other options but from what I understand the costs went out of sight. Ask any one who's remodeled a kitchen recently how much machined Corian costs and you have a good idea of the cost of this speaker. There's enough Corian in them to easily build a complete counter array in a modern kitchen (the speaker is two slabs laminated together in a vacuum pressure press and then machined- none of which is cheap, its not like you can use SealAll to hold this stuff together...). All this information was easily obtained by asking Mark himself (as you can imagine I have been very curious as I have been hearing about this speaker for a long time).
I find the stovetop comments amusing as obviously no stovetop is made with Corian as it would be damaged by the operation of the burners :) So I think we can regard the stovetop comments as a wee bit of the troll influence...
I was also very curious about the woofers, which initially look very pedestrian. A closeup look at the actual diaphram reveals, especially after questioning Mark, that the diaphrams are composed of an metallic honeycomb structure- at once very rigid, lightweight and sturdy. Mark studied several different diaphram structures but all the others failed either due to the materials being inadequate or else costing more for one woofer array then the total cost of the speaker. As Mark obviously took great inspiration from the Carver (and knows the man personally), he knew that the Q of the woofer was important for getting an open baffle design to work (IOW, building an operational planar speaker). The comments of the speaker being a Carver ripoff are thus no less amusing, as the actual woofers, baffle, crossover and ribbon ribbon designs (IOW: the entire speaker) are quite unique. The ribbon and woofers are both made in house. The baffle material, size and shape were modeled by computor to insure the proper bandwidth (17Hz cutoff) and the actual real-world speaker conforms to the design.
Mark sent me a plot of the impedance curve. Other then a bump at the 200Hz crossover point, the plot is ruler flat- 8.1 ohms at any point other then the crossover point. The resonance plots are equally impressive: essentially the speaker exhibits resonaces an order of magnitude less then any other speaker measured.
That is quite a statement, and frankly I believe that some 'audiophiles' were disappointed *because* the speaker lacked the typical resonant signatures that they have become so used to. I have always maintained that electronic reproducers are just that - and *not* musical intruments (which should have resonaces). Colored speakers and amplification built with intentional coloration (don't get me started...) fall into the latter category.
So Ralph, does that mean you like them?
Hi Albert, What, is Kenny G the Antichrist??
Yes, I'm alright with them. It helps that the speaker handled my recording of Salubrious Invertebrae without bottoming out. Of course, like everything else in this sport, the final test will be how they do here at home.
I was talking to a friend of mine who is an interior decorator, and she was pleased, even after seeing photos of the speaker, that there is finally a speaker like the Gilmore, because in her business, it is now finally possible to hide the speaker in the decor, as Corian is available in so many colors. She says that way it does not have to be the central focus of the room. Something *I'd* not thought of before... (she says its nearly impossible to hide most speakers in the room decor as the wood and black grills attract the eye so easily) so now I might be doing the speaker in the same tones as my room is done in now.
The way these things go, I expect it'll be May before I can get my hands on a set.
However, For the record, temporary exposure to 115 db does not damage hearing unless your ears have some previous damage.
OSHA Noise Exposure Limits show the maximum time periods allowable for various noise exposures: 15 minutes at 115 dB and so on. The acceptable sound level (limit) is a time weighted average value. Continuous/intermittent noise exposures above 115 decibels (dBA) are not allowed by OSHA. Most audiophiles would consider it prudent to stay well below the prescribed maximum limits to avoid hearing loss.
Masking of detail occurs with increasing levels. For example, when you have the music cranking at 100 dB, you might feel the beat more but your ears will try to protect themselves. You should be able to hear more information at 80 dB, for example. How this works in the real world depends upon the source, in this case the playback system's ability to reveal low level details and respond uniformly at various levels.
Some people don't think of the speaker as a planar speaker, but it most definately is.
Your definition is different from mine, but then I'm biased.
The way you can tell is that it really makes no difference how close to the speaker you are- the volume you get from it seems the same at any distance in the room. The only speakers I have seen do that are planars.
Assuming an anechoic environment, the sound from a point source decays at a rate of 6 dB for every doubling of distance, related to the area of a sphere, i.e. the square of the ratio of the distances, 10*LOG10((R1/R2)^2), where R1 is the original distance and R2 is the new distance. The decay from a line source is more related to the area of a cylinder, i.e. the ratio of the distances, 10*LOG10(R1/R2), or 3 dB for every doubling of distance. Factoring in some room reflections the differences will vary, but the loudness will be reduced with increasing distance from the source regardless.
I find the stovetop comments amusing as obviously no stovetop is made with Corian as it would be damaged by the operation of the burners :) So I think we can regard the stovetop comments as a wee bit of the troll influence...
Perhaps, but there is a consistency of public reactions. Whether Gilmore chooses to accept them is his prerogative.
I heard the Gilmores at both venues and found them interesting and yes, dynamic. There's been a lot of controversy stirred, surely not a bad thing. It'll be interesting to see how things go. It all depends upon what people are looking for. Exciting times.
Dude, I have no idea what that guy was thinking, playing the stereo so loud. However its nice to know that with a reasonably powered amp that one cannot clip it.
>Assuming an anechoic environment, the sound from a point >source decays at a rate of 6 dB for every doubling of >distance...
Of course, as we all know, no-one lives in an anechic chamber :) As a result, my previous statement stands, unless one has a very large room. At any rate, were it a point source, there would be a sizable increase in volume as one approached the drivers (square of the distance, blah blah) and this obviously does not happen.
With regards to the stovetop comments, there is indeed a consistancy of troll reactions. My girlfriend, on seeing the photo of the speaker, commented that it was nice to see a speaker that had some curves and was not the same-old same-old. Mark reports that the marketing studies show that women accept the speaker easier then men. Obviously there will be exceptions. Mark also points out that the shape of the speaker is such that it prevents comb-filter effects that it would have if it were rectangular.
Mark also explored grill cloth materials and tried every type that is in use on other planars. They all had a sonic artifact. As a result there is no grill. The ribbon is available in several colors so there are choices to allow for the lack of ye old black.
Until there is a grill cloth available (or I can devise a way to add one), I would not put these in my living room.
Before I invested in them I would need to be certain they can make me as happy as my Soundlabs. Under show conditions there was absolutely no way to determine that.
As for appearance and public acceptance. There was a time when AJ Conti of Basis refused to build the Basis Debut Gold in any color other than gold. I had the first one in all black. The Debut is now available in all black for anyone wanting one.
Loyd Walker refused to build the Walker Proscenium Gold Signature Turntable in black, only available in gold. I have the first all black Walker Proscenium ever built.
Atma-Sphere refused to build the MA 2 with any faceplate other than gold. I had the first MA 2 in black. (You probably still remember this Ralph).
I argued with Soundlab and was responsible for the steel frame design for the U-1, calling Connie at Soundlab can confirm this.
The Aesthetix Io and Callisto were designed for only one power supply. I was the first person to make the changes (myself) on the circuit board and run dual supplies. This is now a standard factory available option. Again, a call to Jim White can confirm this.
Maybe my cries about a black Gilmore and black grill cloth will have a similar effect. If not, I can wait until the option is available.
I am pleased that Ralph’s girlfriend likes the Gilmore's as they are, because they may never get changed and obviously Ralph intends for these to become his reference speaker.
Unfortunately I disagree in spite of considering Ralph and Mark Gilmore good friends. I cannot pretend to like the appearance of something I do not. My honesty over this particular subject has gotten me into trouble. This is the first time it has been a problem in all the years I’ve been in high end audio.
I guess we will see how things shake out.
Well, I suppose the Gilmore is already halfway there, as it has always been available in black.
Mark's not mentioned anything about you calling him like I mentioned to you last we spoke. It sounded to me like you had a good idea regarding the grill cloth.
However I spoke to Mark and he revealed some interesting information about grillcloths. He was not able to find a material as I mentioned earlier that was actually acoustically transparent over the ribbon. Additionally, even when the cloth was positioned a couple of inches from the woofer, he had problems with the cloth flapping back and forth. But you might have an approach he's not thought of. Give him a call. I'm sure he would be glad to hear from you.
Thanks Ralph, I will do that as I am interested in the progress of this project.