Do a word search at Audio Asylum in the speaker forum. There is at least one review I know of in that forum.
Actually "Krellm7" Fritz makes the cabinets himself. He made me a clone copy of a Hales T-series center channel. His workmanship is first rate. He also called me personally at least 4 times after the sale just to make sure that I was happy with them. Krellm7 above obviously had no clue to how he builds them, nor does he have first hand experience with John A.K.A "Fritz" as he likes to be called. I can say that speaker was excellent, and the packing alone that it arrived in was overkill. He is one of the good guys in audio selling a product he takes great pride in. John
If I recall correctly, throughout the 80's this speaker company was a serious alternative to some of the "big name" audiophile speakers. I personnaly think it is great to still see Fritz still doing business! He probably knows more than he is letting on about how to make a solid sounding speaker too, since in those days you really had to use your ears to make a great speaker as the drivers varied widely in quality and the measurement techniques and crossover calculations were not able to be done via computers as they are today.
I own a pair of Fritz speakers and I think they sound great. He builds the cablinets himself and his workmanship is excellent. Plus he's a great guy to deal with and goes out of his way to make sure you're happy. If you're in the right parts of California he'll even bring speakers to you so that you can demo them at home. How many other companys will come to your house and spend a few hours with you going over their products? Not many I would guess.
Just because he's a small fish don't discredit him. This guy eats, sleeps, and breaths speakers, and has been doing so since the 70's. Hopefully more people will give his speakers a chance.
in response to krellum7: 1. some of the best
stuff is made in garages and basements. every
one knows that. 2. even a cursory review of the
man's work would have revealed a VERY high rate
of customer satisfaction. 3. Have you ever heard
the speakers yourself, or are you just shooting
from the hip and flapping your lips? I suspect
you are a disgrace to this forum and the audio
community. I hearby banish you to listening to
solidstate equipment till you draw your last
breath. Goodday, Mr. Krell7
Just curious about Fritzspeakers Full Range Fostex Single Driver speakers. I like the concept of a single speaker without a crossover, in a well designed cabinet, but to be honest I've never had the opportunty to listen to a pair, and was wondering what to expect sonically from such a design? If it's any help, taste in music is blues, bluegrass, and some classic rock (no metal), and I would be using a tube integrated amp (Jolida 502A).
haven't heard fritz's speaks, but they seem similar in design to some tekton designs, i own a pair with fostex 167e's, very simple basic and for the money also very hard to beat, i think simple, cheap, and effective is how to suck more people into the hobby, it also promotes the smaller fry in the business. i love all of the innovation and higher end stuff but just can't swing that right now, but oh yeah i can listen to really beautiful sounding music, not that that matters much :- )
like anything else, some people love em and some, well, don't. but that's the way it is with any speaker or anything. personally i love them (fostex 167e) for the money ($350 last year from tekton design, now $450). sure they aren't as extend and airy or dynamic as the apogee minigrands i owned. i'm no critic and mine are still breaking in, but in a room on the smallish side, with a subwoofer (i use a Trends digital amp but would love to hear them with tubed gear and real cd player/dac), they play as loud as i want, far louder than would be appropriate in your average apartment (sometimes with peaks well into the 90dbs), have lots of inner detail, fantastic stable imaging, plenty of high frequency though my hearing probably shuts down before the speaker does, soundstage is very large, especially with good recordings, i listen to much rock, instrumental post rock, heavy psychedelic, and much acoustic of all kinds, they excel in the latter, especially well recorded, also with stuff like steve earle and dianna carter (strawberry wine), really really nice with well recorded female (and male) voice they only get congested with lots of distorted guiter and bass or big orchestral passages, but still work well enough for me even on those. if i had a better front end i really feel they would sound that much better, especially in the bass which i guess would be the weakest part, but even without the sub it stays pretty taut and tuneful (plenty of bass transients help here) and with the sub, the bass remains well integrated though not as refined as a fine full range speaker. they don't match the speed of ribbons but i don't miss it that much at all, especially given their coherency and tunefullness. i guess the best way to sum it up is that the quality in sound you get compared to the amount you spend is unusually high, e.g., i believe the retial cost of the driver is a substanstial percentage of the retail price. i assume you can get better sound by spending 2 or three times more but only by finding the parallel deals at those price points. what you loose is probably the same you miss in most (not all) smaller speakers, some scale, significant dynamics, some detail and air, but they are very easy on the ears, a real music lover's speaker.
like i said in my prior post, i feel like this approach is good for both the hobby and the business and thus an important niche in the audio market.
hope you get a chance to hear them, i'd be curious about what your impressions, especially given your system.
When I bought my first set amplifier (Viva Solista LT) I immediately thought of trying one of those "single-driver" speakers, just to see what it was all about. I happened to see Fritz's stuff on A'gon and I really liked the simplicity of the design and the relatively low cost. My main speakers were the Opera Callas Monitors, which really sounded beautiful with the Viva, but I figured I would fool around with the single-driver speakers for a bit and put the Operas back.
I ordered a pair of the FR-6s in mahogany and I was very pleased with the quick shipping and quality of the workmanship. I put them up and listened for a couple of weeks. They sounded pretty good right out of the box, but they loosened up over the weeks. I live in an apartment and I listen at fairly low volumes, so it's important that the stuff I buy sound good when played softly. That's what I like about the Viva and Operas. I also favor simple music - guitar/bass, piano/bass, Bill Evans Trio, James Taylor, etc.
So I'm enjoying the Fritzs and after a month I decide I've fooled around enough and I put the Operas back up. I put on a solo guitar record and I am very surprised at the loss of inner detail and note-to-note dynamics the Fritzs had. I think the high-efficiency speakers are much more revealing of the note dynamics, which, once you get used to hearing, you really miss when they're not there. In any case, I now understand what the single-driver thing is about. Yes, you are giving up some tonal weight, but the dynamic shifts really do a lot in capturing the essence of a live performance.
Anyway - enough is enough. I really think the Fritzs are very well-made and sound excellent when used within their limitations. With the right ancillary gear, they can really open your ears to the nuances less efficient speakers can miss. Definitely not for everyone, but if you want to get your feet wet with this stuff, I think they're an excellent choice.
PS - my experience with the FR6 has piqued my curiosity enough to order a pair of FR4.5, with the 4-1/2" Fostex driver. The fanatics say that the 4.5" driver have even more midrange purity and their own set of virtues.
I own a pair of Fritzspeakers Fostex6 Full Range loudspeakers and I would highly recommend Fritzspeakers. I found www.fritzspeakers.com when I was researching for a new pair of high-efficiency single-driver speakers for a 300B SET amp that I built. I knew exactly what I wanted and Fritz had them at a very fair price, so I placed an order. I was surprised when I heard back from Fritz after placing my order, to ask me questions about my music interests, my listening room, and what kind of amplifier I was planning to use the speakers with. Rather than just accepting my order, Fritz wanted to make sure I knew what I was doing and that I was going to be happy with my purchase. I was impressed! The speakers arrived in short order from Fritzspeakers, very well protected for shipment, and beautifully built. These are great little speakers at a very good price, exactly what I was looking for. I was surprised again when Fritz took the time to call me after the speakers arrived and made sure I was happy with them. If Im ever in the market to purchase another set of speakers, Ill definitely check out Fritzspeakers again. This was one of the best purchasing experiences Ive ever had. It would be a wonderful thing if everyone took that care that Fritzspeakers does to ensure their customers are satisfied. Fantastic!
Just got an email from Fritz today and I haven't even ordered speakers yet, asking some of the same questions that you mentioned. It does seem like Fritz wants to make sure that people who order, or even interested in his speakers, know what to expect of his speakers, and that they are happy their purchase. You got to admit, the man does seem to want to go the "extra mile" to make sure his customers are satisfied. And I think that's a good thing.
I switched to Fritzspeaks - sold my Paradigms and haven't had a single regret. It goes to show that the megabuck companies, with all their research, analysis, and testing, really have to push advertising to sell their over-priced products. Fritz on the other hand can add me to his list of supporters - without reservation. I found out about him through Audiogon and I checked him out thoroughly before buying. In my home theater system were a pair of Paradigm Studio 20s v4 and a CC center 590 v4 and they were replaced with a pair of Fritz's 261 MTMs. These are truly a substantial speaker with high quality drivers. I opted for the 1" ring radiator with dual concentric diaphragm with wave-guide center plug tweeter - sweet! I continued to use the CC 590 and it did sound great but lacked the same timbre as the 261 MTMs. So, again I chatted with Fritz (he likes to pump you about your system and likes/dislikes) and he then created for me a center channel 261 MTM in black ash to match the furniture. It came already affixed with a semi-transparent protective laminate on the bottom to protect the finishes of both speaker and furniture - nice touch. Now I have a matching front wall that sounds fantastic. I can only echo what others have said about his attention to detail, "over packing" (not a bad thing) and follow-up calls and emails to see how things are going. He likes to receive this type of feedback a few months after the sale once the speaks have loosened-up. My newest quest was to re-build an analog system in my home office and I went with a Jolida 801RC tube integrated and a Jolida tube CD player. Once I had these items I called Fritz to discuss my next set of boxes. Since the room was small and the amp plenty powerful I decided to buy a pair of Fritz Monitor X's in natural cherry as well. These pups arrived well-packed as usual and have still not quite loosened up - due to light use. Tight or not they sound crisp and tight and the bass response is respectable without a sub. I've about pushed the WAF to the limit so I have to hold off on any further purchases, but I do want Fritz to build me one more pair, but bigger - maybe I can sway him one day. The one thing I'd like to see Fritz do to add some finesse to his systems is some sort of name or brand plate identifying his speakers as an "Original Fritz" product. Fritz is highly recommended - nothing but praise for his products.
I just bought a pair of FRITZSPEAKERS FOSTEX 6 FULL RANGE (Fostex FE 167E) from a fellow Audiogoner. These are monitors and they have a 94db sensitivity. They sound really great, especially for the money, even if you buy them new at about $400.00 a pair. Surprisingly, there are very few reviews on FritzSpeakers in the internet. They present astonishingly sharp imaging and tonal accuracy with my small 22 wpc Airtight Integrated Tube Amp. In smaller rooms, they do not leave much to be desired. In my limited experience, listening to them left me thinking why I would ever pay more for nearfield purposes, and in small rooms. I hope FritzSpeakers gets more attention from the audiophile community in the future.
Here are my thoughts and feedback for those interested or unsure about this manufacturer:
I am very happy with my Fritz Carbon 7 speakers - I met Fritz at AK Fest, and was immediately drawn to the sound in his room. What impressed me the most was that simple good electronics is all that is needed to get great sound from Fritz speakers. No esoteric equipment needed.
The top end is smooth, not bright or artificially exaggerated in the spatial department like many speakers. Kind of like a Magnepan, maybe the top end is slightly rolled off, I am not sure, but that is my impression. The bass is strong and tight. As always, good stands will help in this department. Bass hits tight and hard. Very defined. No slop.
I got mine in custom finish, and the workmanship was excellent. If these were sold through a dealer network, I am sure they would cost at least $1000 more. Good Luck and Happy Listening.
I agree with Red2's comments. I just got the Fritz Carbon 7's in my home and they are spectacular.
I've got them side-by-side with the Totem Forests and I would easily take the Carbon 7's. The sound is just so open and natural, very life-like with accurate timbre. For a monitor, the bass is nothing short of amazing. These scan-speak drivers are really quality stuff. I will add more thoughts after I give them more time.
My Fritz Speakers Carbon 7's arrive this Monday. Fritz is outstanding to deal with, is an audio nut, and loves talking audio. Anybody this passionate about a hobby has to be good. Fritz sent pictures of my actual speakers, they look gorgeous. I got the standard ribbon mahogany finish. I'm making the switch after almost 35 years of floorstanders exclusively. They'll be mated up a C.E.C. transport, Benchmark DAC1/PRE, and Parasound HCA-1500A amp.
I've known Fritz for a number of years and I can say he is one of the few out there who understands that not everyone has money to burn. When you buy from Fritz you get drivers normally found in speakers three to four times the price he charges. He hand builds each cabinet and finishes them in the veneer of your choice.
You aren't buying a name brand instead you are buying high end quality speakers that use the finest drivers, crossovers and wire without the rediculous high prices some "brand name" manufacturers charge. From my experiences with Totem and Merlin to name two popular manufacturers, Fritz can build identical speakers. In most cases the name brand version will use high end components and so will Fritz, the difference is Fritz will opt to purchase the top of the line drivers from the same manufacturer, insuring that what you're getting in the finished product is a speaker heavy with value as well as exquisite sound. Rather than try to cut corners to increase profits he builds and voices every pair like he were keeping them for himself. He will usually hand deliver them too. Usually you get to demo his speakers for at least two weeks before making a commitment, who let's you do that? Because every pair is custom built wifey can choose the finish to her hearts content there is a plethora of choices. Driver and Tweeter choices of the highest caliber. Names like Seas, Vifa, Audiovox, Peerless, HiVi Research, Hemptone, Fostex, etc. Why settle for inferior speakers that use inferior drivers, crossovers and wire when you can have the best for less. Quality, quality, quality with prices unmatched, I can't say enough; you definatly can't go wrong when you choose a pair of Fritz speakers.
Whenever I'm asked what speakers I recommend I ask what brands they like and what models. As long as they aren't planeer or electrostat, I direct them to Fritz. He will construct an identical pair using better drivers, crossovers and wire and do it for less than they originally planned to spend. Leaving more money for other components.
Currently I have a new test pair of his limited production Monitor X that use the Hemp woofers with Vifa wide dispersion soft dome tweeters and an experimental crossover. At first listen they seemed a little unbalanced. I reported this to Fritz, the next day he showed up at my door with two other tweeter types and crossovers. We spent hours test listening and trying different combinations until we hit the holy grail. If you've heard and like a pair of his highly aclaimed Carbon 7 model, then you will go gaga over these. Ask to audition a pair. The drivers being hand made and limited production make it difficult to turn out multiple pairs, but if you're lucky enough to get a pair, you'll be so glad you did. The sound is very rich and balanced. The more you give them, the more they give you in return. They have a Tannoy quality in the sound that has to be heard to be appreciated.
If you frequent the trade shows you will likely see him there. He is comitted and loves to talk audio. By attending all the shows he keeps on top of the current design trends and speaker innovations. He is usually paired up with the best source and valve manufacturers in the business too.
I met Fritz last week, he was swamped with orders but still made the time to meet up and show me speakers.
He certainly knows audio and his speakers look beautiful. He was able to show some that he was finishing up for some customers in SF. They were beautiful. He showed me the Carbon 7's and they looked like Totem Mani's in a beautiful teak.
Hopefully I'll get a chance to hear them in my room after he's done with the next production room. One should not be concerned about buying from Fritz, they are well worth it. I highly recommend them.