Tekton ob 4.5

 

Gold Member
Username: Hawkbilly

Nova Scotia Canada

Post Number: 1253
Registered: Jul-07
A pair of these came up on CAM, so I snagged them. I've been wanting to try an open baffle design, and for $400 the price was low enough to take a chance. I've never seen an open baffle speaker in any audio shop I've ever been in, so obviously I've never heard a pair. It'll be fun giving them a try. I've read lots of good things about the Tekton designs, but haven't had a chance to hear a pair in person. I think a couple of folks here have experience with them.

My stands are going to be way too high for these, so I'll have to figure something out before they get here. Here's a link to the speakers.....

http://www.tektondesign.com/ModelOB45.htm
 

Silver Member
Username: Kbear

Canada

Post Number: 981
Registered: Dec-06
Does it really go down to 45Hz? I've never heard open baffle either, but it's intriguing of course. Am looking forward to your impressions Chris, including what sort of music it excels at. For $400 you probably can't go wrong...if you don't like it you should be able to get a decent chunk of that $400 back.
 

Gold Member
Username: Magfan

USA

Post Number: 2152
Registered: Oct-07
Chris, if you end up liking the open baffle you may want to eventually experiment with Magnepan. The MMG is right up your alley.
As near as I can tell, Maggies are 'open baffle' without the speaker, it being replaced by a sheet of tensioned mylar.
Both types are dipole and may have some qualities in common.
The MMG is 600$ factory direct with 30 or 60 day 'in home' while you can get full credit on any upgrade (at dealer?) for up to a year.

Good times.
 

Gold Member
Username: Hawkbilly

Nova Scotia Canada

Post Number: 1256
Registered: Jul-07
I've know of some folks driving Maggies successfully with my amp. I haven't heard the combination so I don't know how it would appeal to me, but I expect there would be many things to like about it. I've been enjoying the Lings a ton, especially since the new power plant was placed in my amp. It's amazing how good a well designed, inexpensive speaker can sound with good electronics upfront, and a little time spent on setup.

I'm looking forward to the Tekton's. I think I can get them far enough away from walls in my listening room. I understand dipoles like some air around them especially. These are already broken in, so I shouldn't have to suffer through the dreaded Fostex break-in period.

Dan, I agree, I think I could get most or all of my $400 back, especially from a Canadian buyer, so it was a pretty low risk decision.
 

Gold Member
Username: T_bomb25

Aurora, Colorado United States

Post Number: 2274
Registered: Jun-05
The OB 4.5 will sound very very different than the Maggies,The 4.5's are not open baffle in the bass the 2nd driver is loaded into the cabinet and its front ported,similar to the X-static's in that regard,but they were sealed.The leading edges of the single driver speaker will be much better with leading edges and truth of timbre,I just picked up a pair of John Blue JB4 MkII's myself and im currently in single driver bliss with very good bass and top extension,you'll really like the OB 4.5's...
 

Gold Member
Username: Magfan

USA

Post Number: 2157
Registered: Oct-07
I would expect, (right or wrong?) that OB speakers would share some of the openness of Maggies.
Or, do they share some of the problems of driver integration, like some of the ML offerings with boxed woofer under electrostat panel?
 

Gold Member
Username: Hawkbilly

Nova Scotia Canada

Post Number: 1260
Registered: Jul-07
Speakers arrived yesterday. I set them up last night and had maybe an hour to listen to a couple of disks. First impressions are good. I lost some bass though, so I'll have to tweak the sub settings. Other than that, an awful lot to like. Vocals and strings are incredibly articulate. I was a little worried I'd find the Fostex drivers a tad edgy, but from the first note that wasn't the case. Very sweet midrange and and treble, with no obvious edge, hardness, or grain. I'll need some more hours with them with different kinds of music to really get a good feel for what they can do.
 

Gold Member
Username: Gavdawg

Albany, New York

Post Number: 1655
Registered: Nov-06
The sound that you are describing is very much why I enjoy the 4.5 standmount. It does so much correctly.
 

Gold Member
Username: Hawkbilly

Nova Scotia Canada

Post Number: 1262
Registered: Jul-07
Indeed Gavin. And for me, they do the important (to me) things right. No speaker is perfect at everything, but the right speaker will do all the important things very well, and everything else well enough. I looking forward to listening to them some more on different types of music and getting a better feel for what their strengths are. They are quite a bit more efficient than the Lings (about 6db) so my Red Wine amp drives the heck out of them at half volume.
 

Gold Member
Username: Hawkbilly

Nova Scotia Canada

Post Number: 1269
Registered: Jul-07
Made a pair of these on the weekend.....

http://www.tnt-audio.com/clinica/stubby_e.html

I used a double layer of 5/8" mdf for the tops and bottoms, and 4" abs pipe for the columns. They won't look bad once painted. The Tekton's are a fair amount taller than the Lings, so i needed something about 6" shorter than I was using. These were just the ticket. And, they sound really good. Excellent bass kick without any boominess or an overly round presentation, which is just what the Tektons needed. They were sounding very good, but with a distinct absence of low bass, and even a bit shy on mid bass. Lowering them and getting them on new stands has remedied all that. They sound very balanced now.
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 15985
Registered: May-04
.

"No speaker is perfect at everything, but the right speaker will do all the important things very well .. "


That may be true. But what if the left speaker truly sucks?



















.
 

Platinum Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 14143
Registered: Feb-05
It would be complimentary, of course.
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 15991
Registered: May-04
.

I'd find it difficult - at best - to compliment a speaker that really sucked.
 

Gold Member
Username: Hawkbilly

Nova Scotia Canada

Post Number: 1273
Registered: Jul-07
Luckily neither speaker is close to suckage, so no creative compliments are required.

I'm still adjusting things to see what works best. I removed the brass cones I had under the Tektons for blu-tack, but then ended up preferring ceramic marbles over either. I've got them over 4' from the front wall now about 2' from the side walls. They definitely prefer being away from the front wall. I also swapped out the absorption panels for diffusors at the first reflection points. This has helped both the Tektons and the Lings.

One thing I think I've reconciled relative to bass output. Some of my perceived lack of bass was not lack of bass. It was different bass. Less round, and much quicker, drier. You lose a little warmth I suppose, but you gain texture and pace. I originally had turned up the sub quite a bit, but it's now only a tick higher than it was previously. I also relocated it about 6" closer to the side wall and that tightened things up even more.
 

Gold Member
Username: Hawkbilly

Nova Scotia Canada

Post Number: 1283
Registered: Jul-07
Final note here. I have the Tekton's positioned as well as I can for now. I've been toeing them out more and more, as they were just a bit beamy pointed right at me. I have them pointed about 6" outside of my shoulders now and sound terrific. Overall I'm delighted with them. In some ways they are what I expected, and in some ways they've been a bit of a surprise. I expected speed and coherence, and those are there in spades. Leading and trailing edges are very well delineated, and that really brings an instrument to life. I also expected imaging and overall soundstage presentation to be very good, and it is. Outstanding in fact. There are times when an instrument is not only outside the speakers, but outside and significantly forward or back of the speaker. When the music gets out in your peripheral vision it's a little trippy.

What I also expected though was a bit of a leaner sound, which I was worried about as I'm not a fan of that presentation. However that has not proven to be the case. In fact, there is more depth and realness to the tone of instruments than I've had before. When I first heard the Red Wine amp I now own, I heard it with a pair of Omega speakers. I loved the reflexes and dynamics of that combination. However, my one issue (and the one that kept me from buying a set of Omega's) was the leanness of the sound. It just didn't have the depth I was used to, and wanted to keep. I was actually wondering whether the trade-offs for one might mean you couldn't really get to the other. The RWA/Tekton combination however brings the speed and coherence, but keeps the tone and richness of midrange instruments and voices that I like so much. The sensitivity of these speakers (92db) also helps I expect, since they seem to be a very easy load for my amp. I used to listen to the Lings at 12-1 o'clock on the volume control, but with the Tekton's it's 10-11 o'clock.

A few notes for anyone else who might be considering these speakers. They need to be well away from the front wall to sound their best. I have mine over 4' out, and if I could get them out further I would. Also, they are likely not a great choice for those who prefer heavy metal, punk, etc, or for folks who really like it LOUD! The excel at jazz, blues, country, blue grass, folk, pop, string ensembles, etc. Rock is fine, especially stuff that's not too raunchy. Pink Floyd sounds awesome on them, as does Bonnie Raitt. Large orchestras will sound fine at reasonable volumes, but if you try to push things to performance levels you won't get that power and energy that you would from larger speakers. But they match my listening tastes perfectly. The other consideration is looks. Now, I like the funky appearance of them, and Eric does a very good job on the construction and finish. However, they are far from your typical cute black or brown boxes. The baffles are quite large (although, I've seen pictures of open baffle speakers that are much larger) and the Fostex drivers are more utilitarian looking than handsome. Eric can make grills for them, but mine didn't come with a set nor do I need them in a dedicated listening room.

The value quotient on these speakers is ridiculous. For the money Eric is asking, they are silly good. So much so that I think to get significant improvement it would cost me several thousand dollars. I could see spending a couple of grand on a set of speakers, and not liking them as much. I think I'll put the money elsewhere.
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