Before going to the journey looking for a best speaker that suit our ears I think we should separate them first. It seems much easier to find it if we listen to Regular 1-2-3 ways Box-speaker or Electrostatic Ribbon Panel or Horn speaker. Generally one-type of speaker have the same sound characteristic. But those 3 different type very much having big different sound characteristic. See and listen to all first, then narrow it down to whatever type that suit our ear best. As my journey has ended at a Horn-speaker. Just my 2 cents.
What I was trying to say was there is certain distinguish sound character coming from different design of the Driver of a speaker. For some people their liking hook and fall in love with certain type of distinguish sound that they produce. Of course every speaker has different sound, even among the same Design type as Electrostatic, Horn or Regular 1,2,3ways speaker will not the same by far or little. I have not listened to all the speakers in this world, but I have listened to Electrostatic Panel (and hybrid), some 1-2 or 3 way and some Horn speakers and for my ears I prefer Horn speakers. This Forum becoming more and more a hostile place to say, share an opinion. And to use the word "Prejudice" seems too harsh I think.
@OP, Unfortunately, if you want to be on Audiogon, you need to develop a thick skin. There are many self-professed 'experts' here who's opinions would be better taken if they used a bit more tact/reserve.
That being said, though I can understand you belief, I think you should audition all those speakers before making such all encompassing judgements. B
I see you're trying to get at categories of sound that go with categories of speaker. This is an overgeneralization, but it's not completely wrong. My experience of listening to box speakers vs. electrostatics vs. those incorporating AMT ribbons vs. dipoles showed some pronounced differences which was partially attributable to their approach.
Horns are fun and some of the real good ones. Everest, VOT, Jensen Imperials, Have some of the nicest cabinets made for their time and now if your into HUGE (normally) ply cabinets..
Me I’m a small planar guy. 3-10" or so.. 8" Monsoon neos are mighty hard to beat for speed, accuracy, power handling and frequency range
The new GSRs can work from 300hz to 20Khz 50 watts continuous power.. and 49.00 usd per unit.. EASY load... Wire them at 8 - 16 ohms and drive them with an A or A/B valves amp.. 20-200 watts they don’t care..
I’m pretty fond of ring and domes too. I think for rock and roll one of the best speakers I heard were Infinities QLS1 40 yeas ago.. Man you get those to sound good.. They use to fill the base with sand and tune that Watson to the room. Came with different resistors for ceiling height..
As a matter of fact I have 24 just waiting for a nice narrow baffle about about 8" wide.. A single AC G1 ribbon for the highs.. Maybe 72" tall. Two railroad ties stacked aught to work.... :-)
@gdnrbob. “Unfortunately, if you want to be on Audiogon, you need to develop a thick skin. There are many self-professed ’experts’ here who’s opinions would be better taken if they used a bit more tact/reserve.” .
Or better yet ignore anyone posting condescending or other discourteous posts. I enjoy my time on AudioAficonionado forum because non courteous behavior is not tolerated and the forum emphasizes high end systems.
@OP, When I was a student, with limited funds, I bought inexpensive drivers and built my own speaker cabinets. I learned about the very basic stuff to make speakers which allowed me to use an inexpensive receiver and a turntable to play through the pair of DIY bookshelf speakers.
In the meantime, I look at reviews and tests, and go listen, in search of the 'perfect' speaker. As a person trained in the sciences and engineering, well as in music, a speaker must test well - not just the linear tests, but the non-linear tests too. Then I listen to speakers and it must sound real, enough to convince me that I am hearing what I expect to be real without having to concentrate to hear it. The speakers should also be listenable over many hours without fatigue. Too many speakers fail this last test, while giving a good initial impression.
It doesn't matter what technology is used to reproduce the music - horns, panels, cones/domes, ribbons, AMT, etc. If the final sound waveform is a facsimile of the input waveform, then that's the best you can expect from the designer. If testing shows this is so, and the sound tells me it sounds real, then I'd buy that speaker (if I can afford it).
Also, consider whether you will listen to the speakers for two-channel music, or will you also use it in a home-theater 5.1-, 7.1-, or more channels arrangement. If both, that could limit your choices in which speaker design you use. Good luck in your search.
Nothing wrong with a good horn speaker. It is a little more difficult to get them perfectly smooth but they do limit dispersion which improves room interaction. I would use them with a BBC curve because they tend to have an edge in the upper midrange. As far as ESLs are concerned you have to audition those that are as tall as the room, 8 or 9 feet. These are significantly more powerful than 5 or 6 foot tall speakers and in most instances smoother than horns with superior imaging, no crossovers. They are not as efficient so they do require more power, the price of admission.
I never consider myself as an expert about speaker, I just have experienced owning some Magnepan, Dahlquist, AR9, JBL250, Martin Logan, KEF, Mission, Rega, Tannoy etc... I am still using Rega Ela in my Reading-room and there are 5 set of Stereo system in my BR, Garage, LR, RR and DR. I don't have nor I wanna have thick-skin just to be able to share a hobby that I love, so I guess I was in the wrong place. I will sign-out and maybe I could find a different forum where I can share this hobby and where some members not trying to look good by insulting each other. Good luck all and Good-bye!.
"...to use the word "Prejudice" seems too harsh I think..."
Yes, perhaps it was but I try to tell people to keep an open mind and discard preconceived notions because there is fabulous gear in every design configuration. Never discount gear due to the design, listen first. We all have our favorites but I'm willing to try or hear as many designs as possible. Some products work and some don't but they deserve a listen first.
@ samadhana Sorry to see you leave. Please consider staying. It helps to understand many here have egos so large they have lost the ability to be polite. I happen to agree with you, and for you it is Horns, for me it is Planar.
As my journey has ended at a Horn-speaker.
Horns are high sensitivty, Excellent for midrange/low mids, all ranges of highs,,Not so much for real bass at 40hz-60hz Here is where you will needa midrange woofer. Thus point is, Horns are really only good fro 2khz-20hz But if I am going high sens, I'd rather goa high fidelity full range cone speaker. I think there is more realism in a FR cone vs a FR horn system. Besides some horns for mids/bass are gigantic and heay, + very pricey. So horns are for the wealthy with huge listening rooms. I hate huge speakers they are ugly. Both massive horns and Wilson Monstas weighing 600 lbs each.
For my full orchestra and other huge sound stage music like big jazz bands, I've found all domes to be rather limited. I mean what range do these tweeters produce? Midrange - highs. Thats a LOT of hz's to handle fora atiny 1.5 inch opening. For this task you need the 6.5 or 8 inch FR which has a cone for deeper, wider, more realistic soundstage.
For light jazz, easy music , dome tweets are acceptable. But who has a collection limited to light music? Better to get a FR which can handle both easy loads and full orchestra. A FR mids/highs are in a whole nother league vs the dated dome tweeters.
I think English may not have been samadhana’s first language. Do you think he confused the word "prejudice" (pre-judgement) with it only being used and related to race issues or am I just WAY too harsh in this case?
Yes, I think 2nd language is obvious. How the inference was felt is hard to determine since posts were deleted. Hate to see a guy with 5 systems and plenty of experience bail out on the forum like so many others have because of rude and condescending behavior. The mods have never seemed to care and thus it will continue. I simply ignore the "legends in their own minds" as well as the sycophants that join their cliques.