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Author Topic: Lipinski loudspeakers  (Read 5940 times)

Rich Mays

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Lipinski loudspeakers
« on: July 17, 2004, 12:25:13 AM »

I tend to be a "show me" type, and after spending a
day listening to the Lipinskis at Bob Katz place, I am
convinced that I have heard the most revealing
loudspeakers of my life. The detail and cohesion are
amazing, and there is no hint of fatigue or dynamic
compression. I was reminded of really good
electrostats but without the "overly transient" quality
that those can exhibit.

At $4k these things are a bargain-- in fact, I
mentioned to Bob that they might be taken more
seriously with a higher pricetag.

They do need good subs (and they do not claim
otherwise) and a really good amp, but the results are
well worth it.

They are also worth whatever effort is necessary to
hear them in a good setting.

Rich
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barefoot

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Re: Lipinski loudspeakers
« Reply #1 on: July 17, 2004, 02:08:47 PM »

Interesting.

I haven't heard these speakers. But reading the website I have to say I'm a little skeptical.  We see that Vifa XT25 tweeter a lot these days (Blue Sky, Audio Physic...), but personally I'm not a big fan.  Its distortion specs are fairly high and it doesn't deal with low order crossovers very well. So, if he's using a lower crossover frequency (2kHz range), he's getting a fair amount of distortion - especially in the 1kHz to 3kHz range.   If he's using a higher crossover frequency (4kHz range), then he's going to have some significant off-axis (power response) dip in the 2kHz region due to the beaming of those 7" drivers.  

I certainly agree with the sealed enclosure, but I have my doubts about the published specs.   An f3 of 31 Hz with 90db/W/m sensitivity from two 7" drivers in a 24 liter sealed enclosure seems, well, supernatural.  The only drivers I know of that can reach that low in sealed boxes with those kinds of sensitivities are monsters like the 18" Aura NS18-992.  Even still, that unit requires a 200 liter box.    I guess Lipinski could be using heavily weighted cones to reach that low in that box, but the distortion levels would be off the charts, the maximum output level would be very limited, and the sensitivity simply could not be that high without breaking some laws of physics.   Maybe it's a misprint and he means 90db/2.83V/m?  This would translate to 84db/W/m into 4 Ohms, which seems a little more reasonable.  The tweeter would also have to be significantly attenuated, putting fewer demands on it,  and perhaps making that low order crossover more feasible.   Nonetheless, the maximum output level would be rather low -  accompanied by significant power compression and low end distortion at moderate SPLs.

Did you notice what kind amp he was using and whether the speakers were able to get very loud or not?

Of course, I've learned to never say never.  But I do find those numbers difficult to add up.  

Thomas
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bblackwood

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Re: Lipinski loudspeakers
« Reply #2 on: July 17, 2004, 02:16:58 PM »

I've not heard Bob's monitors, but he is using a great amp (Pass Labs X250). I find the numbers kinda strange as well considering it takes dual 8" woofers in a much larger enclosure as well as a dedicated midrange driver (and twice the price) to accomplish a higher f3 point from B&W.

They could be amazing, but the numbers do look suspect.
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Brad Blackwood
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Re: Lipinski loudspeakers
« Reply #3 on: July 17, 2004, 02:25:00 PM »

By usage of the foam diffraction panel around the audax, the acoustic crossover would be lower. I would rather expect the "diffraction lens" to actually help the tweeter go almost a full octave lower and serve as a form of waveguide to raise sensitivity, without the need to over excite the diaphragm. Since loudspeaker theory and design/consulting is the field I have spent the most years of my involvement, this is what I see happening. The appolito arrangement (done before he had the coined name) certainly gives more controlling of the dispersion at crossover frequency in "well designed" examples.

Another highly acclaimed loudspeaker company I did a review on claimed "flat to 30hz" with a single 8 inch woofer...in pairs (stereo) at 88dB/Eff/1W/1M and until the review, I was a skeptic as well. With no active equalization (do not care for the dynamics problems) the loudspeakers performed as advertised. This was a passive design as well. -3 @ 22hz in one room, -3 @ 24hz in another and -3 @ 17hz was recorded in still another.

R&D in loudspeakers these days allow for "dirty tricks" (coined by the late Paul Klipsch) which can really be an eye opener...amongst other senses (!)

Personally, I prefer to have solid information into the teens with the lowest octaves and no usage of subwoofers.
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bobkatz

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Re: Lipinski loudspeakers
« Reply #4 on: July 17, 2004, 06:05:24 PM »

bblackwood wrote on Sat, 17 July 2004 14:16

I've not heard Bob's monitors, but he is using a great amp (Pass Labs X250). I find the numbers kinda strange as well considering it takes dual 8" woofers in a much larger enclosure as well as a dedicated midrange driver (and twice the price) to accomplish a higher f3 point from B&W.

They could be amazing, but the numbers do look suspect.


I wonder if there's a communication problem here.  It looks like the second poster is expecting the Lipinski main speakers to go down below their stated f sub c of 60 Hz? Uh, not...  

I'm crossing over at about 60 Hz to a separate pair of subs. Does that make you breathe a bit easier?

I am not an expert on the specs of the Vifa tweeter, but the total sound is as pure and unfatiguing as any loudspeaker I have ever auditioned, so he must be doing something right. It would be very nice to see some professional-level measurements on these speakers. I have measured their frequency response with Spectrafoo, but I don't trust my expertise enough to do THD measurements.
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barefoot

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Re: Lipinski loudspeakers
« Reply #5 on: July 17, 2004, 08:23:31 PM »

Level wrote on Sat, 17 July 2004 11:25

By usage of the foam diffraction panel around the audax, the acoustic crossover would be lower. I would rather expect the "diffraction lens" to actually help the tweeter go almost a full octave lower and serve as a form of waveguide to raise sensitivity, without the need to over excite the diaphragm.


No, in fact it has the opposite effect.   Absorbent foam like this reduces the baffle loading on the tweeter, creating a drop in its low-end response.  It's not the full -6dB shelf you find in an unbaffled tweeter like the B&Ws, but it will place a little extra strain on the tweeter.  

Quote:

 Another highly acclaimed loudspeaker company I did a review on claimed "flat to 30hz" with a single 8 inch woofer...in pairs (stereo) at 88dB/Eff/1W/1M and until the review, I was a skeptic as well. With no active equalization (do not care for the dynamics problems) the loudspeakers performed as advertised.


Flat to 30Hz is not that big of a deal if the speaker is ported.  I would expect it to have horrible impulse and group delay response, but it's certainly doable.   Closed box is another story.  

And I'm not sure what you mean "dynamics problems" associated with active bass alignment?   It's certainly a bad idea for ported designs, but an assisted closed box can perform equally well, if not better than a passive design.  Whether you built it mechanically into the driver, or electronically into the driving signal, it's all filtering.  

bobkatz wrote on Sat, 17 July 2004 15:05


I wonder if there's a communication problem here.  It looks like the second poster is expecting the Lipinski main speakers to go down below their stated f sub c of 60 Hz? Uh, not...  


Yeah, maybe the information on the website is incorrect because I read:

"Frequency response: 56Hz-20kHz
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Thomas Barefoot
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Re: Lipinski loudspeakers
« Reply #6 on: July 17, 2004, 09:01:33 PM »

Thomas, I feel it would be prudent to do more research on open cell, stepped diffraction rings (with square corners and of that shape) and measure your results. At 1.5K, the foam is acting as a boundary and wave guide for lower frequencies, above 3K and up, is where high frequency dispersion control (narrowing) takes over. Build it and measure it. You will find these results to be conclusive. I actually have.

Also do not forget to do an impedance curve with a tweeter loaded as these are. Recently, I have.

Duplicate the design and measure it. It behaves quite differently than you surmize.
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PP

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Re: Lipinski loudspeakers
« Reply #7 on: July 18, 2004, 02:29:36 AM »

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bobkatz

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Re: Lipinski loudspeakers
« Reply #8 on: July 18, 2004, 11:23:18 AM »

barefoot wrote on Sat, 17 July 2004 20:23



bobkatz wrote on Sat, 17 July 2004 15:05


I wonder if there's a communication problem here.  It looks like the second poster is expecting the Lipinski main speakers to go down below their stated f sub c of 60 Hz? Uh, not...  


Yeah, maybe the information on the website is incorrect because I read:

"Frequency response: 56Hz-20kHz
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bobkatz

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Re: Lipinski loudspeakers
« Reply #9 on: July 18, 2004, 11:43:09 AM »

Peter  Oxford wrote on Sun, 18 July 2004 02:29

I?m a sucker for speakers. So I am always interested in anything to do with them and have heard good things about these. I?m sure they?re very revealing speakers.

Because I have always respected Bob Katz a lot and enjoyed reading his book, I knew he had a pair of subs for the bottom. L+R. So that is the complete system Bob uses for monitoring to master in that particular room.




Peter! I enjoy reading your posts! But you're setting me up for a fall with all this praise. I feel like I'm walking on eggs now since sooner or later I'll make another boner on the net since I write so much. I make mistakes now as much as I did 30 years ago, just that they're now VERY BIG MISTAKES. (I learned from all the smaller ones  Smile

Quote:



?They do need good subs (and they do not claim
otherwise) and a really good amp, but the results are
well worth it.?

It may seem a silly question I know, but what is the cost of the monitors plus 2 subs?

This, after all is the real cost of the system.




List (professional net) $4500/pair for the L707

Subs are $1995 each.  So, depending on the size of your room, with one sub, the cost is $4500 + $1995, rounded to $6500, a very reasonable price. I certainly don't want him to raise it just because they sound like twice the price!

BK
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bobkatz

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Subwoofer/bass management requirements, was Lipinski
« Reply #10 on: July 18, 2004, 11:50:49 AM »

I'm going to start another thread because I see a real obstacle to setting up good 5.1 that's accurate and easy to set up 5.1:

1) SACD standard is 6 full range channels and there is no "+10 dB" on the LFE channel. Thus, we have two competing standards!

2) Most home theatre systems are set up for the "boom" thing. I haven't heard an accurate and clean and not distorted subwoofer yet in the home theatre. I certainly want sound for music to be much better and more accurate than the "effects boom and 10% THD" I hear in the typical home theatre. One solution around that would be to bass manage the mains with a pair of subs, or use full range mains, and to have a separate subwoofer for the LFE.

3) Bass management systems, and/or the crossovers in virtually EVERY sub I have seen, are MISSING serious ingredients.

EVERY subwoofer sold should have the following:

A left input and a right input for use with bass management. With its own low pass filter and level control.

A separate input for an LFE channel, with its own low pass filter and level control. This way you can do the .1 channel according to THX/Dolby recommendations (80 Hz), but do your bass management according to what the satellites require for an integrated flat response. My satellites go down to 60... and I want my bass management at 60, but the LFE channel can be at 80 to conform with the THX recommmendation. That way I can have my "boom and scream" when playing movies that use LFE effects, but a nice balanced musical quality when playing music.
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The other says-this is new and therefore better."

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lucey

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Re: Lipinski loudspeakers
« Reply #11 on: July 18, 2004, 12:44:01 PM »

Now this is a good idea:

"Carrying Cases

Rather than in paper boxes, all speakers and subwoofers
are delivered in rugged black nylon carrying cases with
side pockets, thereby simplifying transportation for
personal reference monitoring in commercial studios,
and for on-location jobs. "index.php/fa/142/0/
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bobkatz

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Re: Lipinski loudspeakers
« Reply #12 on: July 18, 2004, 04:50:46 PM »

lucey wrote on Sun, 18 July 2004 12:44

Now this is a good idea:

"Carrying Cases

Rather than in paper boxes, all speakers and subwoofers
are delivered in rugged black nylon carrying cases with
side pockets, thereby simplifying transportation for
personal reference monitoring in commercial studios,
and for on-location jobs. "index.php/fa/142/0/



The carrying cases are worth their weight in gold. Unfortunately, for those carrying speakers to mixing sessions, I've tried the Lipinskis as near fields and they just don't go down low enough and thus will not catch on in the mixing studio because of the need for a subwoofer. So far it's either a 5.1 or mastering speaker.
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There are two kinds of fools,
One says-this is old and therefore good.
The other says-this is new and therefore better."

No trees were killed in the sending of this message. However a large number of
electrons were terribly inconvenienced.
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