They've just launched in fairly quick succession the CS2.7 and the CS1.7 and showed a prototype of the new MCS not too long ago as well as just refreshing their subwoofer line up (USS and SS2.2)
Not enough for you? :)
Not enough for you? :)
"September 10, 2013 THIEL Audio, winner of over 60 prestigious awards for loudspeaker design and performance since 1978, has appointed Mark Mason as the companys new Director of Product Development. Mason represents the first in-house engineering presence for the brand since the passing of Jim Thiel in 2009.
Mark Mason brings a depth of engineering experience combined with a broad range of technical capabilities to THIEL after nearly a decade as Design Team Manager at PSB. Masons expertise includes critical applications such as driver design (the term driver refers to the woofer, midrange and tweeter components that make up most dynamic loudspeakers), Class D amplifier design and high performance acoustic systems design (referring to a completed loudspeaker including drivers, crossover networks and enclosures). I heard about THIEL quite a long time ago and I have tremendous respect for what the brand has achieved in the three decades plus since it was founded, explained Mason. I am honored that I have an opportunity to be a part of THIELs future and help evolve this storied organization, Mason added."
If you read the Thiel website there is no mention that I can find of Jim Thiel. There is a nice history of the accomplishments of the company, but nothing about Jim. The new group also fired Kathy shortly after taking over, after saying they would keep her on. I was a big fan of the old Thiel, but the new Thiel just does not seem to have the human touch that Jim and Kathy brought to the company. Time will tell, but I think the company may have seen its best days. Hopefully Mason will prove me wrong.
I'd like to see a return to some sealed box designs.
Also, in as much as the active bass eq's were a raised flag for some customers, I thought they were quite clever and permitted extended bass response from speakers that were easier to fit into many households. With newer digital approaches, a more room individualized room tailoring might even be more successful.
Wow you are right not one word about Jim Thiel?!? Then firing Kathy a big part of the company I am sure. In the past I have been on the fence about buying 3.7s but honesty other brands have now surpassed their sound (in the 15k range) and the company heritage (and support?) is gone.
Their last few products have been a joke. They took a bookshelf (SCS4) and just added it to a stand (scs4t) and did not even taking advantage of the extra box volume. Not to mention the SCS4 has terable box noise. Then the 2.7 was just a cut and paste project...
As a current thiel owner and potential future owner thiel maybe off my list for good.
I think the CS3.7 + twin SS2.2 subs is going to be tough to beat if they are designing a brand new flagship speaker. I have heard speakers in that price range and (sometimes even higher) and still end up preferring the 3.7 combo.
FWIW I don't really see the 2.7 as a cut and paste. The coax driver, while derived from the 3.7 is unique to the 2.7 and the cabinet is IMHO better than the 2.4SE I had previously which should reduce standing waves a fair bit. If we are being honest, isn't the 2.3 a lot closer to the 2.4 than the 2.4 is to the 2.7?
That said, the speakers that were launched in the last few years were apparently designs Jim Thiel was working on before he passed. How well the new guy understands Jim's design is anyone's guess?
FWIW I am still enamoured by my 3.7/SS2.2 combo.
It just looked cut and past because they did not update the bass driver. Why not design an 8" version of the 3.7's driver for the 2.7.
The 3.7 has always sounded pretty good but their price has crept up to $15,000 now while speakers like Revel Studio 2 has held their price in the same time frame. Add the duel subs and they are no longer budget.
Anyway nothing takes away from the 3.7 or other thiel speakers of the past but the new speakers did not spark my interest.
I have 2 expensive hobbies - wine and audio, plus golf, but that is another story. In my early days, I chased the "absolute best", based on reviews and image. Now days I favor a fine wine or a fine audio component from someone I identify with. I am loyal to companies who I admire. I buy wines from producers I know personally or identify with. The same is true of audio products. The quality has to be there, of course, but it also goes beyond that.
My home theater is Thiel. I went that way after meeting Jim and Kathy several times and liking both them and their products.
My 2 channel (in multiple rooms) is Sonus Faber because I loved the sound and loved Franco's approach to music.
Cary electronics because of their sound and Denis Had.
Levinson electronics because of their sound and their original approach.
Oppo, for their quality and their attention to detail and their customer support.
Pathos, because of their sound and their design aesthetics.
Totem because of their sound and who does not love Vince.
I will still buy quality products from companies with little personality if the quality is there and there is no real product from friendly companies I know. But my first thought is always to companies and people I admire.
I am still waiting to see how the new Thiel measures up.
Sorry for the long soliloquy. But we all have choices in our purchases, especially in a market like high end audio. I will always favor the people I know and the companies I admire.
I think sometimes people complain just for the sake of complaining.
The 2.4's bass driver is IMHO very good. Different from the 3.7s with the design suited for a different sized room. IMHO the best thing about the 3.7 was the coax driver and that was redesigned for the 2.7. The cabinet was also redesigned with a more curved design to reduce standing waves inside the cabinet. All good things IMHO.
If you ask me, the 2.3 to 2.4 upgrade was even smaller. And that was during Jim's time.
I would be keen to see the new MCS designed using the 3.7 coax driver. That would be a nice upgrade and I can relegate the MCS1 to surround duties (if I can find a preowned one on sale to partner with my current MCS1)
Well the only thing constant in the business world is change and new owners almost always want to bring their own culture and people into the organization. Jim's speaker designs will always be classics and live on - I have had my 3.6's for 12 years and will keep them.
I have considered the 3.7 many times but need the dynamics of my current speaker Andra II.
Doggiehowser I'll bet your setup sounds incredible! Would love to hear that combination. How do the subs integrate with the marvelous 3.7's?
I use the (now no longer in production) S1 Sub Integrator from Thiel.
It allows me to dial in the subs to work seamlessly with the 3.7s and just about every other speaker I have tried (not just Thiels).
The SS2/2,2s are just dead easy to set up. No mics needed. I just take out a tape measure (hardest part) to measure how close the subs are to the walls on the side and back of the sub. And on the S1 Integrator, I read off the specs from the manual of the power amp (gain) and speakers (sensitivity, ported/sealed, low frequency 3dB limit) and that's it.