Review: Tyler Acoustics D3 Speaker
Tyler D3 Review
Just wanted to say a few words about the Tyler D3's. I have had my pair for about 10 days with about 70 hours on them.
The basics.... my room is treated with foam from Auralex. Floor to ceiling treatment behind the speaker corners, stand mounted foam tubes in the middle rear and first reflection points dampened with wedge foam rectangular sheets. I think treating the room for good acoustics is very important to hear what any high performance speaker can do.
My preference is for tubes. I'm using an Atma-Sphere preamp and Cary Six pacs with the Tylers. I also have a set of horns powered by a 45 SET and a pair of Quad Pro 63's. With the exception of the power cords all cables are silver wire.
In the past I've owned quite few speakers from Totem, Merlin, Von Shw, Fried, Quad, BMS/Altec and some others. The upgrade bug hit and I was going to make a pair using high quality drivers and my just average cabinet making ability.
Saw Ty's ad for his new speakers and called him. He said he had custom designed all new drivers, crossovers and cabinets. The price was not much more than making my own and the cabinets would surely look a lot better. I took a chance and placed an order.
The speakers: They look fantastic, way better than I could ever make. I wanted to match the red oak in the house and gave Ty information on the stain, they match perfectly. Since I sit in office chairs when listening the tweeter needed to be elevated. For a nominal charge Ty made some 10" stsnds that are the exact shape as the cabinets and are finished in a shiny black paint.
The Sound: Like any high performance speaker these can be very fussy about placement. It took about 10 tries to find the right spot in the room. They also need break-in, out of the boxes they are not anywhere near their potential. They also like decent quality electronics. I used them with one of the new Onkyo integrated amplifiers and they showed it's shortcomings right away.
These speakers are excellent sounding, the soundstage is enormous, the drivers integrate extremely well. I was used to the Quad 63's and feared the D3's might not be an improvement since they have multiple drivers. The D3's easily trump the Quads in dynamics and high end extension. They are just short of my big horn speakers in dynamics but are much better at separating the instruments in the mix. They have a weight in the midrange that is ear opening, massed voices have the best harmonics imaginable.
The bass and mid bass is still getting better, but these guys have slam and punch that's awesome. I have subs but really don't need them much, they are set at 30hz crossover and minimal volume to fill out the very bottom.
Trumpets and Saxaphone are my favorites and these speakers do them superbly, especially trumpet. The most outstanding characteristic is intelligibility of voices. The Quads are very transparent however, the D3's are a step up. It amazing, you can understand words like never before. This is most apparent in watching concert DVD's and movies, I have heard words to songs that I never knew after 20 years of listening. The low level words in movies are now understandable and clear as a bell. Truly a new benchmark in my experience.
To sum it up.... I'm very pleased with the Tyler D3's. They are the best I have owned in over 20 years of listening. And the price is less than others I have owned.
They are high performance, need a fair amount of care to sound good, and highly recommended.
Quad, Totem, Merlin