My neighbor loaded his Forests. The bass really improved - tighter response and more solid extension. But his room is small so the bass quality plays a large role. If you have a big room, the change might not be so significant.
He didn't want to have loose shot in there but the hole to feed it through is small. So we doubled up some panty hose and filled them with shot and fed them through the hole. That way it was retrievable at sale time. It worked out rather well but was a hassle.
the totem sounds fine without, and not worth adding the extra weight. it will effect a resale. if you do load, don't use lead.
First, I got just the opposite feedback from Totem when I owned my Forrests and Arros (no longer own either). FYI - they stated that kitty litter was a good alternative to sand and or shot, or kitty litter/sand combo. I ran both pair unloaded for a couple of months and then loaded both. Both models improved by being loaded. Primarily the result was in better bass impact and possibly a couple of hz. in frequency range - thought this aspect is debatable. I can tell you the difference between being loaded or not was a significantly bigger difference than having the beaks on or not!
As for resale value? I don't see how this would impact that at all. It can easily be removed upon time of sale. If the buyer is picking them up, he/she will probably want them emptied, but will gladly take the expensive shot (by the way, I did not use lead, but a substitute that I purchased at Gander Mountain for safety reasons - moderately expensive though).
Of the speakers I sold, one was a pick-up and the other shipped. I did not have too difficult of a time "getting the lead out". The pair that was picked up was seen by the buyer as having added value in that the shot came with the speakers. The other buyer stated he had every intention of adding shot as he was moving up the Totem line and agreed that loading them is prefered!
Just out of curiosity - how and why does lead affect resale if it is removed?
Incidentally, on someone's suggestion, rather than sand (which tends to attract moisture) I used kitty litter to load my Forests. Don't laugh - it smells nice, does not contain or attract moisture, and can easily be poured/ vacuumed out at sale time. I was able to get maybe 7-8 pounds in each speaker. It did tighten the bass.
Jswarncke, How does sand attract moisture? Sand is relatively inert silica. Moisture adheres to the surface of the grains and (if saturated) fills the void spaces between the grains. But the individual sand grains do not absorb moisture and they certainly are NOT deliquescent. Deliquescent is the property of absorbing moisture from the air. That is the property that makes salt and sugar cake.
On the other hand some clays have a remarkable ability to absorb moisture and are used as liners for landfills and for slurry walls to prevent flooding or water intrusion. Another name for clay is "kitty litter". What does kitty litter do? It absorbs moisture. I don't have cats but I imagine the litter swells as it absorbs water.
Lead Fans: What part of the "get the lead out" message is not getting through? Laws have been passed to get the lead out of many things to the maximum extent possible. That includes electronic equipment. Yet audiophiles insist on buying many pounds of lead to put into their speakers and stands.
This is not my first post on the subject and unfortunately will probably not be my last post because some people are not getting the message. Mining and smelting lead has a much larger environmental impact than mining sand. When lead has to be disposed of it is a hazardous waste. Sand is not. Lead is soft and leaves a HAZARDOUS residue in whatever it is placed in. I would never buy any equipment that was filled with lead.
Please just use sand or kitty litter. I used sand for my speakers. Cheap (and dry) at Home Depot and easy to get rid of (in my garden or concrete project) when the time comes.
The reason for me asking is because I just got a new amp/pre combo and it took me to another level. I really like the forest and have been looking to upgrade them but only a few of the more pricey speakers catch my fancy. So I was just trying to improve on what I have, not destoy the world
catula bill....i suspect you're enjoying your system as is. the forests are one of the great all rounders. even if you paid 10k or more, you could do alot worse...
i found it deadend sound,less life to music,imho.
Yes I enjoy my system very much. I read reviews in mags and read what people say here on the gon about $3000 speakers that are the next coming, want to love them but couldn't. then I jump to $5000 speakers and still they don't do it for me. As for deadend, I'm shocked, I understand we all have different taste but thats not even close to a discription I;ve thought or herd about the Forests. In my journey for better I've auditioned many speakers that I would call lifeless that people seem to love. Thanks for the help on to load or not. My room is 400 sq. ft. I think i'll leave them alone
Don S., thanks for your comment on the lead and reference to my statement; "get the lead out". As indicated earlier in my post/comment I did indicate that the "shot" that I used was not a lead shot, but one of the commonly available alternatives. Many States now have laws about using lead shot and as a result, there are many alternative materials used for making shot. I think (hope) that most people are smart enough not to actually use lead but the commonly available alternative materials.
Bill, for you, I would suggest loading them. It is quick and easy to both do and undo. I think you will prefer the sound with loading. My experience was that it added to the musicality simply by delivering a more believable bass.
There is alot of vibration to the forests cabinet,inherent in the design of speaker you can say it causes less vibration when you load then.i didnt like them with shot in them,ive ownwed them and many more.Loved them..but they aint the only game in town...period.Yes you will enjoy them more without goodluck.
Don S - I stand corrected on deliquescence. I should have just said that much of the sand I have bought for projects has been really wet. In light of my newly acquired knowledge, I will clarify that the moisture must have been between the sand particles rather than actually within them. Wherever that moisture resided, it seemed to be better not to introduce it into my speaker enclosure. The kitty litter seemed much easier to deal with IMO. As far as I am aware it has not attracted further water or swelled in any fashion. Hope that clarifies my answer.