I don't care for them. No.
9 responses Add your response
I own a pair of Zingali Overture .2s which have compression loaded horn tweeters. While the horns do add a lot of energy in the upper octaves, they are accurate, smooth, clean, and quite 3 dimentional. Horns do something unique in sound reproduction, like planar speakers (ie. Magnepan) the sound may not be for everyone however their devotees are dedicated to them. I should qualify that I am a former Magnepan owner and I like OTL amps too (specifically Atma-Spheres).:)
I heard nice sound in the Acapella room at CES. They are a very new design, something called spherical horns.
As a rule I don't like horns, but these were very high quality and did some amazing things.
Yes I have heard the Avantgarde, Oris and Azura horns and the Edgars. All are different from each other and from other speaker designs. Although they do some things very well, there is a particular, easily identifiable personality all these imprint onto the music.
All speakers have a personality and none are perfect, but for me the horn design is much more obvious and therefore more difficult to listen past.
If your playing Miles Davis and listening for accuracy of his horn playing, they excel, perhaps even the best possible reproduction. If your listening to female vocal or piano, the sound is not as pleasing as could be obtained by other speaker designs. (My opinion only).
The Acapella seems to be less effected by this phenomenon, perhaps a change in crossover design, driver design, or just excellence in execution.
That being said, I mention the Acapella only to show there are exceptions to the rule, even for those who prefer other designs. In spite of my admiration, I would not consider them for my personal reference system.
Thanks for the compliment on my show images, I hope Audiogon continues to see value in posting them on their site.
I am a huge fan of horn speakers for P.A. work in live performance spaces, movie theaters, bars, dance clubs, etc. They have a dynamic vitality, and the ability to broadcast it into large spaces full of people that I've never heard equalled by any other type of loudspeaker. However, even the best betray the fact that they are horns in a home music reproduction environment. By this I mean that I can readily tell that I'm listening through a horn because it has a sort of shouty, echoey sound, particularly with voices. Some have more, some have less, but all seem to have it to some degree. Therefore, despite their obvious superiority in some respects, I prefer other types of speakers for enjoyment of music in my home.
i am another fan of acapella. not only they use different drivers to their best advantage for most of their models (plasma tweeter + horn midrange + cone bass), their execution is precise, their sound very transparent and coherent to my ears. even their horn-less fidelio monitors have magic.
the avantgarde duo are great, but has bass issues. i have yet to hear the mighty trio.