Best Small Horn speaker? Horn speaker lovers. (Piano sound)

Willgolf

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Jul 22, 2019
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Phoenix, Az
I bought a pair of Viking acoustics Berlin's last summer. I live in Santa Fe so I able to audition them. I wasn't looking for another pair of speakers but once I heard them I wanted them. What i like about them is their smallish size and big sound. My room is 17x17. They work perfectly in my room. With my other speakers I use a pair of subs. Not needed with the Berlins. David's technology of porting the bass through the horn is in unusual but delivers great bass. Deep and tight. The mids and highs are also exemplary. I'm very happy with them till I move up to L'instrument in a year or so.
John
Did you get a chance to hear my Grande Voix's while David had them in his studio? I think you might bypass L'Instrument for your next speakers. My only option is the Gottenberg's. LOL. Thankfully I love the GV's.
 

djsina2

Well-Known Member
May 31, 2019
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Yes I did hear the Grande Voix. Incredible. The sound filled his cavernous studio. Problem is they are way to big for my room.
If I had a bigger room I’d get the Fantom. My Berlin R mk3 will hopefully arrive in another few weeks.
 

Willgolf

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Jul 22, 2019
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Phoenix, Az
If I had a bigger room I’d get the Fantom. My Berlin R mk3 will hopefully arrive in another few weeks.
I DID HEARTHE FANTOMS. THEY ARE VERY GOOD ALSO. I have not hear L'Instrument but I would think in a smaller room they would explode with sound.
 

marmota

Well-Known Member
Feb 3, 2016
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"Small" and "horn" are mutually exclusive words, even more so if your objective is a convincing reproduction of piano, and even more so if you want to use low powered amplifiers. "Cheating" with a driver loaded to a TQWT instead of a horn may be your closest option. With such priorities and the small room size, I'll look at something like the Cessaro Chopin, which is smaller than it's successor Wagner. Downside is that, due to being discontinued, it may not be available for audition at a dealearship unless it is a used or ex-demo pair. I have not heard the Chopin, but it is a speaker I plan to hear and probably buy if I like due to it's characteristics and relatively low used price. Ditto for the Horning Eufrodite, it may be a tad big for your space, but due to having 39300391 different revisions, used prices are ridiculously low compared to new.
 

loki1957

Well-Known Member
Sep 19, 2012
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Santa Fe NM
I must say that the Berlin's are very good speakers and I'm very happy with them. I have a problem with upgrading things every 2 years.
 

morricab

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Apr 25, 2014
5,790
2,085
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Switzerland
"Small" and "horn" are mutually exclusive words, even more so if your objective is a convincing reproduction of piano, and even more so if you want to use low powered amplifiers. "Cheating" with a driver loaded to a TQWT instead of a horn may be your closest option. With such priorities and the small room size, I'll look at something like the Cessaro Chopin, which is smaller than it's successor Wagner. Downside is that, due to being discontinued, it may not be available for audition at a dealearship unless it is a used or ex-demo pair. I have not heard the Chopin, but it is a speaker I plan to hear and probably buy if I like due to it's characteristics and relatively low used price. Ditto for the Horning Eufrodite, it may be a tad big for your space, but due to having 39300391 different revisions, used prices are ridiculously low compared to new.
Both my main speakers (Odeon La Boheme) and my project system (Supravox Alizee + horn) “cheat” using a high sensitivity wideband cone and a horn loaded compression driver tweeter. Piano on the La Bohemes is one of the more realistic I have heard, especially with what I call “action” on the piano itself. Dynamic scaling is also superb.
 

marmota

Well-Known Member
Feb 3, 2016
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Both my main speakers (Odeon La Boheme) and my project system (Supravox Alizee + horn) “cheat” using a high sensitivity wideband cone and a horn loaded compression driver tweeter. Piano on the La Bohemes is one of the more realistic I have heard, especially with what I call “action” on the piano itself. Dynamic scaling is also superb.

It's a very interesting topology, and certainly a very good option for getting proper dynamics and high sensitivity because it allows the use of high sensitivity, very low qts (low mass + huge magnets) drivers that wouldn't work that well in more conventional bass reflex or sealed enclosures. Also, some constructions use the TQWT/horn gain and room placement close to corners to avoid a baffle step circuit, and as such they have simpler, more efficient crossovers. This kind of speaker + low power SET is a very wise choice for a small-medium size room IMHO.
 
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morricab

Well-Known Member
Apr 25, 2014
5,790
2,085
553
Switzerland
It's a very interesting topology, and certainly a very good option for getting proper dynamics and high sensitivity because it allows the use of high sensitivity, very low qts (low mass + huge magnets) drivers that wouldn't work that well in more conventional bass reflex or sealed enclosures. Also, some constructions use the TQWT/horn gain and room placement close to corners to avoid a baffle step circuit, and as such they have simpler, more efficient crossovers. This kind of speaker + low power SET is a very wise choice for a small-medium size room IMHO.

As I don't have huge rooms for hifi, i have found this to be the ideal combination for dynamics of horns with much of the bass and power of a vented box. The Odeons are using a very old doped paper driver from Focal (from the 1980s), which is beautifully smooth and flat out to over 5Khz and with a 95db sensitivity. However, it has very low Qts (0.21 I think), which means a huge Onken style vented box or something like a TQWT, which is what Odeon went with. They then coupled that with a nice wooden round horn (Tractix or Spherical...I am not sure) and a 1 inch compression driver from Beyma (CP350Ti).

The Supravox system has the 8 inch driver 215-2000, which is 99db but with a Qts of 0.23. It also has a moving mass of only 7 grams! Super transparent and alive sounding driver. What is amazing is that in the TQWT designed by Supravox this speaker is getting down to 30Hz in room. I am coupling this to an 18 Sound XT1464 horn + Beyma CP755Ti or Iwata 600 + Beyma CP350Ti for the highs.

The Cessaro Chopin and Wagner also use the same Supravox 215-2000 driver as the main driver, a nice wood or composite horn and a TAD compression driver. It is not clear to me though what the backloaded horn configuration is that they are using. From the mouth it looks more like a traditional exponetial horn, although in their description they call it something like a hornreflex, which could be a hybrid design or another name for a TQWT. Not sure it will produce the same quantity of bass as I have found traditional exponential backloaded horns to sound somewhat weak in the bass unless the horn is pretty long. TQWT takes less space and seems to be more powerful sounding.

I only heard Hornings a long time ago but was very impressed...have always considered them but ultimately didn't buy a pair...yet.
 
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marmota

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Feb 3, 2016
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As I don't have huge rooms for hifi, i have found this to be the ideal combination for dynamics of horns with much of the bass and power of a vented box. The Odeons are using a very old doped paper driver from Focal (from the 1980s), which is beautifully smooth and flat out to over 5Khz and with a 95db sensitivity. However, it has very low Qts (0.21 I think), which means a huge Onken style vented box or something like a TQWT, which is what Odeon went with. They then coupled that with a nice wooden round horn (Tractix or Spherical...I am not sure) and a 1 inch compression driver from Beyma (CP350Ti).

The Supravox system has the 8 inch driver 215-2000, which is 99db but with a Qts of 0.23. It also has a moving mass of only 7 grams! Super transparent and alive sounding driver. What is amazing is that in the TQWT designed by Supravox this speaker is getting down to 30Hz in room. I am coupling this to an 18 Sound XT1464 horn + Beyma CP755Ti or Iwata 600 + Beyma CP350Ti for the highs.

The Cessaro Chopin and Wagner also use the same Supravox 215-2000 driver as the main driver, a nice wood or composite horn and a TAD compression driver. It is not clear to me though what the backloaded horn configuration is that they are using. From the mouth it looks more like a traditional exponetial horn, although in their description they call it something like a hornreflex, which could be a hybrid design or another name for a TQWT. Not sure it will produce the same quantity of bass as I have found traditional exponential backloaded horns to sound somewhat weak in the bass unless the horn is pretty long. TQWT takes less space and seems to be more powerful sounding.

I only heard Hornings a long time ago but was very impressed...have always considered them but ultimately didn't buy a pair...yet.

My guess is that Cessaro Chopin/Wagner are front loaded TQWT, opening is too small for a horn (Cessaro Zeta is a 80hz front horn, for size reference) and too big for a transmission line. I haven't seen internal pics of Wagner, but I guess it is CMD enclosure with those thicker side panels, probably translam inside. The large 90cm depth may be more for absorbing Supravox's backwave and get away with minimal or no BSC with corner placement. I'm intrigued by the TAD's placement, my guess is that it is so high to listen off axis and flatten the response that way, instead of doing it in the crossover. It may even be a 1.5 way speaker if they cross it over at around 3khz, due to the Supravox beaming and forming an acoustical filter. I don't say it's true, but could be a possibility. I think Wagner is a very interesting loudspeaker.

I think that TQWT is super interesting, only a sealed transmission line would be better, IMHO. And I looked far and abroad for drivers suited for it, qts around 0.4-0.45, and nothing interesting exists, so it would require custom drivers to be at the same quality level (and a miracle or huge amounts of money to be +95db sensitive). In contrast, all the SOTA high sensitivity cone drivers are very well suited for TQWT/Onken cabinets, so it is possible to build a incredible speaker with off the shelf parts that doesn't cost the same as a house.

PS: sorry for the late reply.
 

morricab

Well-Known Member
Apr 25, 2014
5,790
2,085
553
Switzerland
My guess is that Cessaro Chopin/Wagner are front loaded TQWT, opening is too small for a horn (Cessaro Zeta is a 80hz front horn, for size reference) and too big for a transmission line. I haven't seen internal pics of Wagner, but I guess it is CMD enclosure with those thicker side panels, probably translam inside. The large 90cm depth may be more for absorbing Supravox's backwave and get away with minimal or no BSC with corner placement. I'm intrigued by the TAD's placement, my guess is that it is so high to listen off axis and flatten the response that way, instead of doing it in the crossover. It may even be a 1.5 way speaker if they cross it over at around 3khz, due to the Supravox beaming and forming an acoustical filter. I don't say it's true, but could be a possibility. I think Wagner is a very interesting loudspeaker.

I think that TQWT is super interesting, only a sealed transmission line would be better, IMHO. And I looked far and abroad for drivers suited for it, qts around 0.4-0.45, and nothing interesting exists, so it would require custom drivers to be at the same quality level (and a miracle or huge amounts of money to be +95db sensitive). In contrast, all the SOTA high sensitivity cone drivers are very well suited for TQWT/Onken cabinets, so it is possible to build a incredible speaker with off the shelf parts that doesn't cost the same as a house.

PS: sorry for the late reply.
I think you are right about Wagner being a TQWT becase I think they even refer to it as a "hornflex" design. I really like the Supravox driver but I still prefer to cross my tweeter over lower rather than higher. I cross as low as 800Hz with one horn/driver combo and at 1000-1200 with another. I guess I kind of have a poor man's Wagner :). What really surprised me about the Supravox Alizee (the base speaker that I am building my two-way from) is how potent the bass actually is. Their spec is only to 55Hz...not so low really but I am getting in-room flat to around 30hz...and it sounds that way...potent. The best part, IMO, is that this is coming from a driver that is not moving visibly at all...not even a flinch and yet this potent sound pours out.

There are some profi drivers that would be interesting to try in this configuration as well, like from Faital pro, Radian etc.
 

marmota

Well-Known Member
Feb 3, 2016
204
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I think you are right about Wagner being a TQWT becase I think they even refer to it as a "hornflex" design. I really like the Supravox driver but I still prefer to cross my tweeter over lower rather than higher. I cross as low as 800Hz with one horn/driver combo and at 1000-1200 with another. I guess I kind of have a poor man's Wagner :). What really surprised me about the Supravox Alizee (the base speaker that I am building my two-way from) is how potent the bass actually is. Their spec is only to 55Hz...not so low really but I am getting in-room flat to around 30hz...and it sounds that way...potent. The best part, IMO, is that this is coming from a driver that is not moving visibly at all...not even a flinch and yet this potent sound pours out.

There are some profi drivers that would be interesting to try in this configuration as well, like from Faital pro, Radian etc.

The magnet structure (both field coil and Alnico variants) and cone profile of your Supravox is, IMO, a work of art, and should be in a league of it's own in terms of control and transient response vs more "conventional" drivers. You are using it exactly as intended, as the driver is designed for such cabinets, can't go wrong with that approach :)

18sound released some very interesting drivers, all well suited to TQWT. The novel feature is something they call "AIC", which basically is a second voice coil counteracting the driver's impedance peak, as such, driver impedance is completely flat without needing to use crossover parts. Of course, cone and magnet are not Supravox level, but super interesting, intelligent feature IMO.
 

morricab

Well-Known Member
Apr 25, 2014
5,790
2,085
553
Switzerland
The magnet structure (both field coil and Alnico variants) and cone profile of your Supravox is, IMO, a work of art, and should be in a league of it's own in terms of control and transient response vs more "conventional" drivers. You are using it exactly as intended, as the driver is designed for such cabinets, can't go wrong with that approach :)

18sound released some very interesting drivers, all well suited to TQWT. The novel feature is something they call "AIC", which basically is a second voice coil counteracting the driver's impedance peak, as such, driver impedance is completely flat without needing to use crossover parts. Of course, cone and magnet are not Supravox level, but super interesting, intelligent feature IMO.

I will have to give those a look...
 

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