Horns vs. single drivers

I have owned a pair of Klipsch Heresy horn driven speakers for the past 20 years. I plan on getting a pair of Quicksilver Mini -Mite monos(25 WPC) and am considering going with a pair of Cain & Cain Abbys or Lowthers. I certainly plan on auditioning these before making any decision. I have grown to like the sound of the Heresys and am curious what diferences I can expect with the single drivers. My other option may be to upgrade the Heresys by rewiring and reinforcing the cabinets with bracing.Any input is greatly appreciated.
You had better actually listen to some Lowtbers first, some say they are the best in the world, others don't care for them. Very distinctive sound
The single drivers with back-horn loading are very efficient, without the front horn loading of the Klipsch. I'd expect lower colorations and much more coherent sound from the Lowther. Lowthers are not "coloration free" but they tend to be less colored than most front horn type speakers. The biggest advantage is the lack of passive crossover network, which is a big advantage, in my opinion.

I agree that auditioning is important, since these speakers elicit very different responses from various types of listeners.

For the record, I luv 'em on my analog/SET system.
I also own a pair of vintage Klipsch Heresey's. Unfortunately, I have only been able to play them
through solid state amplification. My first amplifier
(receiver) was a Kenwood 9400. Which boasted 120
watts per channel, but sounded dreadful with the
Heresey's. Twenty years later, I am now using a
Yamaha 60 watt integrated which has much better
synergy with the Klipsch.

I'm just about ready to take the plunge into the world
of tubes and I'm curious what electronics (solid state
or tubes) that you have been using to drive your speakers? I 've read that Quicksilver's are a glorious
match for the Klipsch. I would think that the mini-monos
and a fine tube preamp, should get you pretty close
to audio nirvana. Certainly, some rewiring and bracing
(something I haven't done yet.) could only improve the
sound of the Heresey's. I added a Hsu-VTF-2 into the
equation for better bottom end response which was a
great help.

I guess what I am saying is that you should hold onto the Heresey's before making any hasty and costly decisions. I'm curious to know how you would hook up
the Quicksilver's to the Heresey's? Would this require
modification to the speaker terminals ect.. This question, by the way, is from someone who hasn't had any experience with a soldering gun before.Hence,the reason for not rewiring my Heresey's yet!

I'm holding onto the Heresy's so I can finally mate them
with tube amplification. Any suggestions or comments
would be greatly appreciated.

As a fellow Heresey owner I felt obligated to reply to your question.
Happy Listening,
Hi mmaudio,
I started with all Adcom and a year ago got an Ah! Njoe Tjoeb CD player. This has led to a slow, piece by piece upgrade plan. The sonic changes I made in tube rolling the CD player made me a believer in vacuum tubes and particularly NOS tubes.

My next upgrade came as a surprise. I auditioned a Cary and an Eastern Electric preamp and was stunned by the natural sound of the Eastern Electric. I walked out of the shop that day with a new preamp in hand.

Then I replaced all cables and powercords. My jaw hit the floor after listning to the Van den Hul interconnects - incredible synergy. I have Chris VanHaus powercords and Jon Risch design speaker cables. Cables are clearly as important as any component within the system.

Now I'm ready to get a new amp. I'm impressed by Quicksilver's philosophy - simple, minimalist design will tend to bring the listener closer to the emotion being conveyed. I've also considered George Wright's SET amps and the new Eastern Electric amp.

Staying with the minimalist philosophy, I feel that single driver speakers such as Lowther are worth a listen. I have been very happy with the Heresys and have always felt Paul Klipsch was an absolute genius. I had the pleasure of meeting him back in the late 80's. I've read that many musicians like the vintage Klipsch speakers because they duplicte the sound of a live performance. I have to agree, although I'm not a musician.

The hook up of the Quicksilvers to the Heresy's will be a simple swap of amps. My speaker cables are terminated with spades. The binding posts of the Heresy's are small(3/16") and I believe 1/4" is standard on most speakers. Certainly no soldering is necessary unless you want to hard wire the amps to the speakers. I've never soldererd but have a friend who makes a living at it so I may do an internal rewire on the speakers. The Klipsch website has a forum with lots of good info on this.

I highly recomend you to "take the plunge" into tubed gear. You'll never look back!!

Happy listening. Mike.

Mootsdude, at the risk of feeling really dumb, I'm still
not sure about the Quicksilver mini-mono's hooking up to the Heresy's with relative ease. Since I ownly have the two terminals on the back of the Heresy's(+-), and I
have two amps(one for each channel), the Heresy's
are not bi-wireable friendly, or am I missing something.
I must apologize, I'm a newbie when it comes to mono amplifiers when it comes to hooking up which wire to which, ect... But I want to learn. A friend has the mini
monos and modified Monitor Audio Gold floor standers,
custom built Arthur Loesch tube preamp, and the presentation is lovely.

I know that my Heresy's could really swing with tube mono amplification. I'm just not sure about which one's.

Happy Listening,
Sorry I had to get off the computer before commenting
on your system. So you did live with solid state amplification for awhile. Generally, how were the Adcoms with the Heresy's?

On another topic, based on a in-store audition,
you chose the Eastern Mini Max preamplifier over a Cary preamp. I'm sure the Cary cost much more, and that has got to give hope to the underfinanced majority
who need to get the most "bang for your buck." Sadly,
I'm deep within that camp, making very careful decisions, when it comes to buying audio gear.

Also, how you started your progression into the world
of tubes (Ah Tjoeb cd player), the ability to experiment
with tube rolling, was of particular interest. I've had my
eye on one of those down the line. Now I need to sell
some photography equipment for either a full tube
intergrated, single amp -pre combo, or mono's and
preamp. I should have about $2500- $3,000 to carefully
play around with. I also am probably looking at used
equipment, which can get a little tricky at this price range. Any suggestions would be graciously welcomed.

Your comment about cable synergy is also very true.
At present, I'm running 25 year old 14 guage(I think),
Monster Cable, Monster Cable 5000 interconnects,
so, you can see my set up is pedestrian, at best.
Of course, this is due to financial constraints, not preferred taste. My speaker run is 15-16 ft, so I need to
make a thrifty, yet, wise, decision when it comes to speaker cable. Any suggestions?

Happy Listening,
I think you are confusing bi-amping with concern to having to biwire the speakers. With monoblocks you can run single wire from the amps. Each amp is simply a single channel within the two channel system. If you were to bi-amp, you would run two stereo amps to a pair of speakers and it would require biwire.

When I referred to rewiring the Heresys, I'm not planing on making the speakers biwireable. I'm just going to upgrade the existing internal wire with better quality wires.

The Adcom equipment is good bang for the buck. It was certainly a bit harsh when paired with the Heresys.

The Cary preamp that I compared to the Eastern Electric was actually an Audio Electronic Supply (AES) which is made by Cary. It has recieved good reviews in it's pricepoint and is roughly $1500. The Eastern Electric Minimax is $1200. Some of the reviews of the Minimax have put it on par with preamps costing nearly 5 times it's price!!

I feel the front end of the system is very critical. The theory that any faults in the musical signal coming from the source will only be amplified downstream is certainly true. With this in mind, I started upgrading with the source and headed downsream from there. I think this helps greatly with identifying component synergy within the system. An important issue is matchimg impedances between components.

The used market is a great way to maximize the investment. I'm amazed at how often people sell and buy new gear in search of audio nirvana. It's common to see gear that's only a few months old and in mint condition for a fraction of the retail.

The upgrade of cables and interconnects was an eye opening experience. The only way to be sure if a cable is "good" is to hear it in your own system with A/B comparison to other cables. "The Cable Company" has a library of cables and it costs 10% of the value of the cables rented for two weeks. This is applied to the purchase of the cables. They recommend cables based on your specific system. It's a great resource. Some of the DIY cables are a great bargain and relatively simple to make. I'd recomennd Chris VanHaus powercords. Many people also like Signal Cables. There are many, many options to choose from. Just remember, a cable may recieve rave reviews and come from a reputable company, but may not work well within your system.

Once I get the new amps, I plan on taking the plunge back into vinyl. I feel this will be the key to audio nirvana. I'm looking at a Teres turntable, but this will reqiure a significant investment.

I hope this helped. Feel free to continue asking questions. I've learned from many on this forum.

Happy listening, Mike