I' second your nominaiton of the Calix: the cabinet work looks great in the picture (as does the wood), but the shape and those cages...
While I'd love to hear a pair, my wife would never let me bring a pair of MBL 101Ds into the house.
Finally, I'd like to say that one time I saw a pair of Apogee Stages in taupe. I was so paranoid about having that terrible color in my house that I made the used equipment dealer who sold me mine send me pictures to prove that anthracite was gray, not brown.
Second your nomination of the Avantgarde horns.
Saw a pic of Monitor Audio Studio 60's, they look like caskets.
I've got to add a couple of additional speakers to my list, even if I did start this thread:
1. the Cabasse "eyeballs" (I wouldn't be able able to concentrate on the music for feeling watched);
2. the MBL Radialstrahlers (interesting, but still ugly);
3. the Beauhorn B2 horn loudspeaker (see page 51-52 of Issue 14, HiFi+ mag);
4. the Second Rethm (see page 44-45 of Issue 13, HiFi+ mag).
And while we're talking about "ugly", how about an unappealing name for a speaker -- such as Royd? Now there's a name that brings a wonderful picture to mind....Maybe they should design a hemispherical enclosure and call the speaker the "Hemi-Royd"........
Verity Audio Lohengrin are pretty scary too...
SdCampbell, thanks for the laugh, but not for bringing the "wonderful" picture to mind.
Hi Scott; I've got to agree with your nomination of the Avante Garde jobs-- gotta' be the ugliest I've ever seen (pictures only of course). After a night of heavy drinking, I've woke up with better looking speakers than those. The Spica Angelus (sp?) have a reputation for being ugly to some, but I always thought they looked kind of futuristic. Cheers. Craig
Unicorns german speakers that were arround here probably last year for the auction.
I was just thinking some more about the Royd speaker line. What an opportunity for them to develop an advertising campaign conducted by the guys who do the milk ads. Can you hear it now: "Got Royds?"
Sdcampbell, your killing me.
looks like nightmare covered with KKK hood...!
Why's everybody bashing the Avantgarde horns? They look totally cool, I like them (if anybody wants to give away a pair...). But one ugly hunk of speaker is the Lagacy Audio Whisper. Cheesy grandma-style heavy oak cabinet resting on some balloney pedestal. Gheez...
I'll nominate those Tennessee Sound Company speakers from over 10 years ago that looked like oil drilling rigs (I was only kidding that they looked "cool" in the other thread). And those Unicorn speakers mentioned above really didn't look great in their pictures, either. Finally, I just think the Jadis speakers look like Yosemite Sam, so I nominate them here as well.
How about Spica Angelus. I have a pair. I love them. My wife hates them. I have a feeling that eventually she'll win. Perhaps my consolation will be some Harbeths or AP Virgos.
I also think Martin Logans look pretty terrible. Like some sort of giant air-ionizer in the living room.
I suppose the top of the line giant floorstander from Royd is the SteRoyd ?
I'm afraid I have to nominate my speakers as the ugliest ever. I own a set of Sequerra "Futuresonic" (which also may qualify as silliest name) loudspeakers. A picture is available, along with some very interesting reading, at "Stereos Of The Rich And Famous":
The picture is down near the bottom of the page. But, they sound better than any speaker I've ever heard, except Dick Sequerra's full-blown ribbon speakers, which are about $125,000 per pair! I've had many sets of speakers in my system, and none can come close to the dynamics and detail of the Sequerras. So I'll keep my ugly ducks and listen happily ever after.
My friend thought that they where the back seats from a 60's Buick.
They should be given extra ugly points if they're dusty & have a couple of dents.
Ejlif: I sense a theme here after seeing your post nominating the Avantgarde Trio Classico as the "coolest speaker ever". As I said in my comments starting this thread, one guy's "cool" is another guy's "ugly", which is maybe a good thing given some of the prices for high end audio gear. If you really think the Avantgarde Trio is the "coolest" ever, it makes it easier to understand why you think the Vandy Model 5 is the ugliest. Chacun a son gout...
Most if not all JMLab speakers are pretty ugly. So are:
NHT 2.9 and 3.3.
Most if not all Cabasse speakers.
Speaker Art Proklaim's....truly excellent speakers....but they look like a giant tooth. I own them and proudly display them in my living room, so I can say this!
why don't you just admit you're not sophisticated enough to appreciate quality horn loudspeakers? as you obviously have a strange obsession with their "looks". i suggest you stick to nice coffin box speakers and your home theater amp. plonk.
No one has nominated the Wilson Audio X-1 Grand Salamis...any thoughts on this speaker?
Forget about the looks of the Avant-garde...I finally got to hear them in Vegas. They are great, if you like the sound of "Winchester Cathedral" by the New Vaudeville Singers (remember that one?) Great megaphone sound!!! Also, I really do like the looks of the Calix (much better in person than in photos). However, you do have to get used to having two refrigerator size speakers in your listening room! Happy Tunes!
I don't have a problem with horns and i think that the AvantGarde's look like misplaced tuba's on a flower box. Not the worst i've seen, but surely NOT attractive by any means.
As to others that look "funky" or "dorky" ( but may perform well ), here goes. These are in no specific order and since the title says "ever", some of them are a "blast from the past". Obviously, beauty is in the eye of the beerholder : )
Green Mountain Audio Continuum 1.5 ( something about these things just looks "weird" to me )
JM Reynaud Odyssee ( what can i say about these. Look like sideways "eyeball cones" mounted on top of a box )
Pearl Eliptica ( these things look like huge bananas on stands. For $70,000 or so, they could have done SOMETHING with the cosmetics )
Design Acoustics D-12A ( 12 sided Dodecahedron design i.e. a radiating sphere )
JBL Paragon ( worth more now than when they were made. Where in the hell do you put a speaker that is 103" wide ??? )
Old plastic "speaker chairs" that you sat in ( I bet some of you folks still have these down in your basement : )
Ohm F's and A's look pretty "funky" without the grills on too. One of my buddy's came over and saw mine and said "Cool. Star Trek speakers" : )
Klipsch La Scala's in the "utility finish" ( these things are just big, squatty boxes that are ugly to say the least )
Sorry if i stepped on any toes. You can kick me in the shin next time : ) Sean
Yes, the Wilson Audio X-1 Grand Slams are butt ugly. So are all the big Dunluvy's in my opinion. These speakers were all designed with only the functional aspect in mind, without regard to any appreciation of aesthetics. As to many other speakers mentioned above, I feel they were designed with some aesthetics in mind. Of course, whether one appreciates it or not is a another matter. Then again, that is the true nature of aesthetics, isn't it??? I have the Nautilus 801 speakers. To me, they are amazingly gorgeous, but to other people, they are simply butt ugly, as I have read in some audio reviews......
SPICA ANGELES! BUTTT UGLY!
Spica Angelus, too. But, you gotta figure, somebody who's making ugly speakers must have a reason -- you've heard of "price no object?" How 'bout "looks no object." Most, if not all, of these mentioned are great sounding speakers.
Similar design concept to Egoss' ugly Sequerras, but with a cloth-covered grille frame to hide the mismatched enclosures.
If you ask me it's a tie between Janet Reno and Richard Nixon.
Sincerely, I remain
Acapella "Excalibur" or "Campanile".
I've seen the Campanile's in person. ...Can't say how they sound, but visually speaking these take whats wrong with the Avant-gardes to a whole new level - kinda like Elephantitis of the loudspeaker.
Vandersteen's without the grill cloth.
The ones with the WEIRD tops like Wilson.. and jmlabs
Dunlavy coffins and B&W nautilus
I think the Wilson Audio Grand SLAMMS are the ugliest. Chunky non-parallel, boxy-looking british design. Second place would be the Revel M20's with the silver finish. Of course these speakers "look" a bit different when I close my eyes and listen!
The big Wilson, hands down. As for the new Sophia, I second my wife's observation that they look just like "the trash cans around the (community) swimming pool," right down to the painted finish.
Tannoy Westminsters Royal
Vandersteens sound pretty good but are butt ugly...whatz up with the turd brown grill cloth? Maggies are a bit funky looking too...then again...cosmetics are an after thought...most ugly gear does perform well...it almost has to...why else buy it?
Also DQ-10s will not win any beauty awards....
Those Acapellas are a fashion statement alright... I think they and the AvantGardes are both extreme examples of "like or hate it" as I know folks on both camps. (And this is a contest of looks, not sonics, right?)
The new cyclops VMPS model looks hideous in photos.
I hate the new Dynaudio Confidence line. It looks like a beautiful Dynaudio Cabinet stuck in a black corset. I loved the look of the old confidences.
We need a "Least Improved Cosmetics", this one goes negative.
All of the Magnepan. I know you can't make them pretty, but they sure fall in the ugly catagory.
I am a Dynaudio fan, but I have to second Jpharris on the new Confidence line.
What about those big coffin boxes like Dunlavy and Duntech, how many women are happy to see those at home?