Audioholics $1500-$2000 Floorstanding Speaker Shootout 2009

R

riot235

Audiophyte
Great shootout, lots of effort and it's much appreciated. One thing that I had heard prior to the shootout, not sure where, was that the RBH TK5-CT was going to be included. Granted it is a now discontinued model, I was really curious how this speaker compared to the rest in the shootout - particularly the Salks. The TK5-CT has long been an audioholics reference speaker in that price range. Any comments anybody could give comparing the TK5-CT and the Salk's? I have the TK5-CT but I've been really interested in the Salk's after hearing all of the positive reviews and owner feedback.
 
Swerd

Swerd

Audioholic Spartan
Great shootout, lots of effort and it's much appreciated. One thing that I had heard prior to the shootout, not sure where, was that the RBH TK5-CT was going to be included. Granted it is a now discontinued model, I was really curious how this speaker compared to the rest in the shootout - particularly the Salks. The TK5-CT has long been an audioholics reference speaker in that price range. Any comments anybody could give comparing the TK5-CT and the Salk's? I have the TK5-CT but I've been really interested in the Salk's after hearing all of the positive reviews and owner feedback.
I haven't heard the TK5-CT, but Tom Andry did compare them with the SongTowers in his original review. Look again at the last page of that review.
 
Tom Andry

Tom Andry

Speaker of the House
Great shootout, lots of effort and it's much appreciated. One thing that I had heard prior to the shootout, not sure where, was that the RBH TK5-CT was going to be included. Granted it is a now discontinued model, I was really curious how this speaker compared to the rest in the shootout - particularly the Salks. The TK5-CT has long been an audioholics reference speaker in that price range. Any comments anybody could give comparing the TK5-CT and the Salk's? I have the TK5-CT but I've been really interested in the Salk's after hearing all of the positive reviews and owner feedback.
Swerd answered for me but also, look at the title. The RBH's are not in the correct price range. The "how to run a shootout properly" article explains why adding speakers outside of the MSRP isn't a good idea.
 
A

allargon

Audioholic General
Swerd answered for me but also, look at the title. The RBH's are not in the correct price range. The "how to run a shootout properly" article explains why adding speakers outside of the MSRP isn't a good idea.
I would've loved to see Strata Minis or Rockets included as well. However, we all know AV123 has some business issues right now.

I read of Jay and Clint but no mention of Dina in the review. I wonder how fun it would be to get a non-audio geek into a blind test to see if that skews the results.
 
G

griffinconst

Senior Audioholic
I love shootouts. Thanks for the good work.
Did I just miss it or was the price of each speaker pair not included?
 
B

BoB/335

Junior Audioholic
So, it was only one ID and three B&M brands in the shootout? :confused:

ID brands tend to offer more for the money so it isn't a surprise the the ID brand beat out the others. Probably would have been more balanced to have gotten at least one other ID brand. Just my opinion of course.:p
 
oldgoalie33

oldgoalie33

Junior Audioholic
Sure, more manufacturers 'could' have been represented, but the bottom line is any speaker comparison involves a lot of work, and FWIW the Audioholics team gets my congratulations for a job well done.
 
krabapple

krabapple

Banned
Bravo that you did the test blind, but I can't put too much stock in the results -- Harman built an expensive 'loudspeaker turntable' and and acoustically optimized room for a reason. It's just not fair to compare loudspeakers situated in different positions in the room, given the effects loudspeakers position has on room interactions.

Also, three listeners is a mighty small sample....and I wouldn't venture to guess what statistical analysis would say about the results. It would also have been interesting to allow repeat of pairs. And allowing the listeners to discuss their impressions amongst themselves during the test (which appears to be the case) is a definite no-no.
 
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jinjuku

jinjuku

Moderator
Bravo that you did the test blind, but I can't put too much stock in the results -- Harman built an expensive 'loudspeaker turntable' and and acoustically optimized room for a reason. It's just not fair to compare loudspeakers situated in different positions in the room, given the effects loudspeakers position has on room interactions.

Also, three listeners is a mighty small sample....and I wouldn't venture to guess what statistical analysis would say about the results. It would also have been interesting to allow repeat of pairs. And allowing the listeners to discuss their impressions amongst themselves during the test (which appears to be the case) is a definite no-no.
Dinging ppl since they need Dinging since 1988:

I am all aflutter waiting for the krabappleholics.com audio enthusiast web site where blind listening is done with 500 people wired to machines that record over 200 different biometric functions. Most importantly when they wet themselves.

end of rant.
 
krabapple

krabapple

Banned
Dinging ppl since they need Dinging since 1988:

I am all aflutter waiting for the krabappleholics.com audio enthusiast web site where blind listening is done with 500 people wired to machines that record over 200 different biometric functions. Most importantly when they wet themselves.

end of rant.
Your wait is over. You can stop fluttering. The site is called Hydrogenaudio :p

Also odd that you'd jeer about blind testing....since the Audioholics shootout under discussion was, you know...*blind*. And I applauded them for that. Audioholics markets itself under this banner: "Let our rigorous testing and reviews be your guidelines to A/V equipment—not marketing slogans". If the testing is only 'somewhat' rigorous....some of us notice that sort of thing.

Anyway, you 'dinged' me just out of spite, not because anything I wrote was incorrect or malicious. It just made widdle baby jinjuku *annoyed*.

Better get a change of diapers ready before you read the following; it's a post from yesterday by Sean Olive -- the guy who's been running all those 'scientifical' tests on loudspeakers at NRC and Harman for a decade or more, with the same goal as Audioholics -- 'to pursue of the truth in audio' -- but using better methods. You might notice it says *kinda the same thing I did*

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?p=16198521#post16198521

First of all, I'd like to say that it is extremely difficult and often misleading to make comparisons between different speakers without the use of speaker mover to control positional effects. The positional effects can easily swamp out any true audible differences between the speakers, particularly if the measured differences among them are very small. I used to find that positional effects alone could change the preference rating of a loudspeaker by 20%. That is why Harman spent considerable money on a multichannel and in-wall speaker mover -- so the positional biases are removed from the test.

Secondly, you cannot correlate what you hear to what you measure unless you have comprehensive on and off-axis data like the kind we advocate. You could be hearing brightness in a loudspeaker that has a dip at 2-4kHz on-axis because of its off-axis response. The upper-treble brightness you are hearing could also be due to the 2-4 kHz dip since the dip could produce a release in upward masking - emphasizing the frequency range above the dip. In our listener training exercises, listeners commonly mistake dips as peaks located higher in frequency.

Comprehensive anechoic loudspeaker measurements combined with the right set of in-room measurements can usually explain what you are hearing.
 
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engtaz

engtaz

Full Audioholic
Nice write up. I like it when you discussed lessons learned about music length, music choice and I really like the blind listening. The individual review you did before it when cool. I liked how you compared your personal testing from what you were hearing during the shootout.

Thanks,
Roy
 

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