All loudspeakers have a distinctive sound and tonality, this varies slightly at different levels, listing positions, types of music, and room acoustics.
The Resolution SUHTL is uniquely different, firstly that it has no tuned resonances from resonating enclosure materials, secondly that all it's sound comes from just the one drive unit- forward, so there is far less room sound arriving at the listener generated backward or from other indirect paths by the enclosure resonance or ports.
Conventional loudspeakers blur or propagate the sound in many directions, and what arrives at the listener's ear is a mush of colliding sound.
The Resolution SUHTL therefore, sounds fresh and bright, with clear edges on the notes and inflections normally lost.
I you are thinking that vinyl sounds better than CD, you will likely hate the our loudspeakers because we reveal every detail and problem vinyl has, and add none of the traditional coloration that might make an old beatles LP sound smoother. If you like detailed reproduction, extended tight bass, and fantastic imaging - then look no further - these are the best.
If a real person were in the room 3 feet away from your ear, you would hear every salivation, plosive sound and breathing uncomfortably close right?. Well if you take a recording done in the studio closely mic'd e.g. George Michael's' Roxanne, or Mariah Carey's fourth of July (download sample here) your hifi should produce a flat mix of what was recorded - which will have all that detail. Plosives ("P" and "B" sounds) are a particular discriminator, as only the resolution SUHTL fires them at you from the same drive unit as the Sibilance ("S" sounds etc) - just like a real voice.
Because the full range is fired relatively closely and directionally, you get FANTASTIC imaging and realism from our system comared to the normal 'hi-fi' systems that wither lose the plosives, or fire them lower to the ground with an inbuilt echo or smotheness not in the recording.. This fantastic detail is dramatic and fidelity, but not 'easy-listening'. We have found that many hi-fi enthusiasts believe the ultimate fidelity reference system is what they want, but then notice their recordings sound a little flat and naked - because they have been used to hearing them artificially embelished by the speakers they use (reflex/wooden encl etc). You simply cant have it both ways, you either want fidelity or you dont. If you have not built up a collection of really clean recordings from top artists, with great instrumental or vocal skill and accuracy, you arent seriously looking for a reference system?
We are working later this year on a reverb upgrade to the DEQ that will ADD DISTORTION into the sound for customers who have innacurate or dull recordings. We have proved that if we put some echo and soften the bass with reverb/delay and other distortions, our system sounds EXACTLY like most other 'hi-end' loudspeakers. This is because they in-build resonances and late-arrival paths (reflex etc) to the system.
We find our system perfect for perfect recordings, which otherwise cannot be appreciated so well with any other system, and for a small room system, cannot be beaten for vocals/acoustic/natural instruments.
For synthesized/electronic instruments, may sound as bare as they in fact are, but in compley productions, every single instrument among dozens is completely seperated and unadulterated by the others. This again is unique. Normally you are aware that the vocals 'dip' with the bass beats, and the music pulses with the beat, but with our system it does'nt, as there is no crossover pulling power from the tweeters on the bass beats, and no audible interference between woofer/tweeter.
Listening at shows from other exhibitors is quite helpful, we found several misconceptions:
Sub-woofer: this is marketing nonesense as most sounds produced are sonic not sub-sonic. these really are 'low-woofers or deep-bass units'. The reason this mis-information was spun is to cover up the fact that most systems cannot really do full range flat, requiring below 30hz reproduction flat. so rather than admit this, the loudspeaker manufacturers pretend their full-range(not) system is missing nothing audibly, but benefits from the subsonic shaking.. The resolution SUHTL needs no sub-woofer unless you want literally the earht to move, or a feeling of bass on your chest (sinaudible but feelable grequencies below 18hz)
FULL_RANGE SYSTEM. this should mean that the system is cpable of producing easily heard frequencies thfor all audible frequencies (18hz-18khz +/- 20db). In fact even floortanders costing £20k cannot go below 50hz without the bass magnitude being more than a tenth of the othaverage level. The other manufacturers have got away with the mis-use of this term because the public havent heard a shoot out with a full-range system in reality
High-Efficieny Loudspeaker. again, vastly misleading and over-used. Normally 'high-efficieny merely means "no bass"-> Let's say you only quote efficiency at the standard 1khz point (industry standard), this is not bass it is mid-range (vocals really). You could just build a voice coil with no woofer or tweeter, and it would be fantastic efficiency for 1khz (even >100db @1m 1Watt) but that is not full-range, nor could anyone want a hi-fi with narrow band. Now as a designer you know that as the requirement to deliver bass increases, to get the same power in lower frequencies than 1k, you need bigge air movement, which means bigger cone, which means heavier cone and now if that cone is trying to do the 1khz it is less efficient (say 93db) and will only deliver flattish bass down to say 50hz. to keep the efficiency high, most manuf design the drive unit unresponsive to signals lower than say 50hz, and this means the cone is not responsive to deep bass and it's corresponding big deflections. Now they can make the cone lighter to increase efficiency, but not do deep bass or plosive sounds anymore. Should high efficiency then be for full-range? of course it should - now if you were to use our DEQ to eqalize the low bass from that paper-coned H.E drive unit, it would have to deflect massively to get it's little cone area to move enough air, and it would definitely rip itself apart - the paper would tear and you would be left with a blown-up cone and a hefy bill!. The resolution can take it!. Down to 20hz!. Since it has been designed to take 330w peak, at normal levels, with raised bass deflections demanded by the equalizer, it is still witin safety margin.. The impedance of the SUHTL at these low limits s fantastically low. that's what you pay for, so the efficiency will be high. What could possibly be more efficient than getting all the audible bass just from the front of one cone, without rear-wave interference, enclosure pressure, or corssover circuit losses? Hello again SUHTL. Efficient 1khz is easy, efficient 20hz now that is just possible for the first time?
N.B. most high-efficeny loudspeaker seekers are really worried about protecting their low-powered amplifiers(ancient valve / gainclones etc) than anything to do with fidelity. Let's be honest, if you want to play at 95db SPL@1m in your room(disco level), you could do that with a 10watt amp at 1khz with nearly any loudspeaker in the world, but with a demand to reproduce 20hz at the same level, you would probably need a 50watter. In fact most recordings dont have much sub-60hz content (since the recording engineers dont expect a full-range reference system will play them in the main) so it's not a problem, but now and then in Pink Floyd, modern CD and drums there are regularly deep bass signals onm the recording that either need
1. a loudspeaker which wont respnd below 100hz much (most),
2. A full-range reference system with a powerful amplifier or
3. the resolution SUHTL/DEQ system and any amplifier, providing the weaker amplifiers are protected from deep bass demands by modelling the curve onscreen (another first for resolution).
If you are really talking about efficiency, you should not-only consider it should be a full-audible-range discussion, but also only qualify direct and high fidelity sound reproduction, which would rule out reflex and resonant enclosures using walls or echo reinforcement.. Efficiency is defined scientifically as power out/power in; what you measure is power in to the loudspeaker. what you measure is power out (normally level meter @ 1metre away, reading Sound Pressure level) If you think horns are high-efficiency - consider whre the low bass is coming drom, and if that is a fidelity or echoed source.
Selecting Loudspeakers at a show. Let's face it, invariably, exhibitors find the best music that works with their system, and wont play the worst. Many people go from room to room absorbing the differential qualities like frequency tonality, forwardness, imaging, bass-extension, and dynamics. At the Resolution SUHTL demo, we play not only several different samples from classical/acoustic/rock and jazz, but also visitors CDs, and furthermore we demonstrate at the twiddle of a knob on the DEQ, that we can 'chameleon' most other loudspeakers types by adding in a resonance lift at any given frequency, adjusting tonality or stereo width.
Visitors found it amazing that there was no point buying a 'fixed' system when the SUHTL/DEQ package gave them the flexibility to simulate whole show(in priciciple) in one pair!
Ambience or feeling surrounded by the music. Really this is complete spin, If a manufacturer mis-directs the bass or mid-range (easy if you use cheap materials) and the sound is very reverberant, particularly directing toward the ceiling (up-firing) or rear walls (rear-firing/reflex) then the sound will be bounced around the room more and more. This usually ends up at the ear late and reflected like in a bigger room, thus giving that impression. Unfortunately this excessive bouncing and omni-directional propagation although it smoothes out the music and makes it easy-listening - destroys any imaging or fidelity.. Listen to the same recording in headphones and you will realise it is a trick of embelishing a boring recording or taming down a lively one. Abience is nonesense it is in fact merely a room-resonant system, which is never capable of full-range fidelity without echos. What would an ambient system do to a recording in a small room, or studio? It will always make your room sound bigger, and boom like hell at higher volumes.. If you wanted to recreate an ambient system with the resolution - merely turn them 180 degrees to face away at your walls - that's how ridiculous it is to class such systems as hi-fidelity.
Instead of exxagerated amounts of bass, at one tuned frequency, the resolution SUHTL will evenly reproduce the bass of the recording faithfully and precisely. Many thousands of lines have been written by reviewers on which particular tracks sounded best on loudspeakers - because the inbuilt resonance of those loudspeakers suited/wrecked particular instruments/recordings.
First impressions are that the bass is light, but clear and the instinct is to reduce the treble with the room equalizer unit, but all that will do is make it sound more familiar to the toned down resonating alternatives. A bit like inter-personal distance, it can be a bit much having 'Mariah Carey' sound like she is literally straddling you - which the resolution SUHTL will reproduce (fourth of July from album Butterfly), but a recording is just that. In that example, the vocals were closely recorded, and little reverb added to the CD.
Gone is the pounding possible from tuned reflex designed to exaggerate bass guitar and the high end of bass drum kicks - but instead is all the lost information about what those instruments were doing and what they actually were.
If you collected a lot of music before on the basis it sounded smooth and pumping, you will be in for a shock, but there was probably a lot you rejected, of more natural and complex recordings particularly orchestral or simple acoustic which the old kit simply couldnt do justice to, and now the Resolution SUHTL can bring to life.
Whatever your recordings, you will hear more detail in every part or every instrument. A cheap fuzz guitar may have sounded better on resonating woody speakers before, but the priceless stradavarius or delicate vocals of a tenor would also have been ruined with the resonating woodiness.
Listening to headphones of every type, you you could broadly say that the sound is similar to the SUHTL except one thing - imaging. with headphones there is no positional or room reverberation sound, so you would think the sound originated between your ears. With the Resolution SUHTL, the sound has tight positional origin, and because the brain forgives horizontal ear difference, but not vertical - you get the impression the musicians are actually in the room. This is something unique as other designs fail on two counts:
1. because the sound comes from more than one vertical place, it suffers acoustic diffraction and your cognition also knows which heights it came from (unlike real discrete sounds)
2.the bass was distorted or lost, which is a vital part in recognising voices etc as real. It is a myth that there is no important content of voice below 300hz - it is recognisably absent.
One thing we haven't built in yet is a 'blurring' control, which could allow Resolution SUHTL owners to regress back to the resonating blurred bass and coloured mid-range. Joking, you could always try pointing the Resolutions at the wall - the effect might be similar?
With the room equalizer, you can now do 3 main things:
1.reduce the bass roll-off of the single driver to deliver great bass
2.cut the amount of treble if it seems painfully bright
3.add a bass boost at a particular frequency to simulate other loudspeakers
this means the adjustable system is tunable to your own amplifier, room and taste. Reviewers will have to write more about how adaptable this system is, than how it sounds. We expect they will start with the basic setting of just bass lift, and gradually get accustomed to the merit of leaving the treble alone, as they slowly find more and more discarded recordings come to life with it intact.
Sorry to conventional reviewers, we know some of you will try to bang this perfectly round peg into the square hole of conventional review criteria in a few minutes, but we are confident that most will think more about what they always wanted, than how different it sounds to their own treasured hifi.
Resolution SUHTL is the long-awaited full-range full-capability system you had dreamed of decades ago.