Sigberg Audio MANTA dual cardioid active speaker development thread

TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Seriously, I have no life.
Have you heard of Steinway-Lyngdorf? Extremely expensive, and I didn't have a chance to listen in a great audio environment, but the sound was amazing.
I have heard of them. But they do not create any interest from me. Di-pole moving coil loudspeakers I consider a dead end pretty much. They may cost a lot, but they can't afford the ink to publish any meaningful specification. So my hunch is that they are more likely than not, high priced junk.
 
highfigh

highfigh

Audioholic Slumlord
I have heard of them. But they do not create any interest from me. Di-pole moving coil loudspeakers I consider a dead end pretty much. They may cost a lot, but they can't afford the ink to publish any meaningful specification. So my hunch is that they are more likely than not, high priced junk.
You should listen to them, rather than writing them off because you don't agree with their methods.

Granted, the Steinway part doesn't help the sound, but the sound was what attracted me to the sound when I went to CEDIA in 2005. Even from more than 100' in that noisy convention space, the sound of the piano was amazing- up close, it was even better.
 
TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Seriously, I have no life.
You should listen to them, rather than writing them off because you don't agree with their methods.

Granted, the Steinway part doesn't help the sound, but the sound was what attracted me to the sound when I went to CEDIA in 2005. Even from more than 100' in that noisy convention space, the sound of the piano was amazing- up close, it was even better.
Well, I guess I am biased by experience. I have heard a number of open baffle speakers over the years, and all have made a negative impression on me. Unfortunately I have never heard the Linkwitz designs, which seem to be the most intelligent.

However, I have to question the wisdom of a design an approach that creates a whole host of problems to solve. Even then, at the end of the day it is going to be highly dependent on room and position. This thread is about the Sigberg approach which is the exact polar opposite of an open baffle approach and trying to make the speaker as room neutral as possible. The design choices of Sigberg seem the far more intelligent approach to me. They are also far more practical as far as installation and interior design considerations are concerned. So yes, I remain of the opinion that the Lyngdorf-Steinway approach is on the buffers of a dead end.
 
highfigh

highfigh

Audioholic Slumlord
Well, I guess I am biased by experience. I have heard a number of open baffle speakers over the years, and all have made a negative impression on me. Unfortunately I have never heard the Linkwitz designs, which seem to be the most intelligent.

However, I have to question the wisdom of a design an approach that creates a whole host of problems to solve. Even then, at the end of the day it is going to be highly dependent on room and position. This thread is about the Sigberg approach which is the exact polar opposite of an open baffle approach and trying to make the speaker as room neutral as possible. The design choices of Sigberg seem the far more intelligent approach to me. They are also far more practical as far as installation and interior design considerations are concerned. So yes, I remain of the opinion that the Lyngdorf-Steinway approach is on the buffers of a dead end.
IIRC, they aren't crossed over very low, preferring to use them for midbass. They're the company behind RoomPerfect, which is the system used by McIntosh for room correction. At this point, I have no opinion of this because it came about after I heard their large system but I have to say that it was impressive. JBL had their Synthesis speakers at the same show, but I didn't get a chance to hear them.

I may end up involved with a system that has an unhappy customer, due to un-managed expectations, allowed by a salesperson who doesn't seem to have qualified the customer much, if at all. The comments I heard were that it sounds better, to him, without the correction- Mac electronics, KEF speakers and four JL subwoofers- two larger in front and two smaller behind the sofa with a smallish rug in front of the sofa, with the rest of the floor surface bare hardwood. It's a small room with very little on the walls. Not a system I would have designed; the homeowner spent a whole lot of money, isn't happy and I can't blame him.
 
E

E.C.

Audiophyte
Awesome speakers! I believe I also told you the same thing on ASR, lol. I see that you’re now ready for production, but I had a couple of suggestions, maybe for a future update I guess. Maybe these have been discussed, I didn’t read the whole thread.

An option for tilting the speakers when using subwoofers as stands could be a tilted base under the sub. Maybe in the same walnut veneer, or maybe not? That way you don’t see the gap created with taller feet.

Or make the base of the speaker(the veneer’d part) removable and attach the tilted base there in its place. Or maybe the veneer itself is a removable trim piece that can be replaced with an angled trim piece and base.

The foam gasket of the pro driver lets the speaker down a bit with the grills off and the grills themselves, when in place, let it down too imo. You could recess the woofer a bit further and either attach a trim ring over the frame or do a circular grill that covers the whole driver and sits flush with the baffle. That way, you keep the design language of the large circle, but it’s much cleaner to match the rest of the design. That would also protect that driver while allowing the cool baffle slots and coax to still be visible.

I personally think better grill solutions could lift the entire Sigberg line because, as they are, they don’t seem up to the rest of the effort, build quality and price of your speakers.

I hope my criticism is taken constructively as that’s truly how it’s intended. I love what you’re up to and also that you’re willing to share the process with the rest of us! Best of luck!
 
Sigberg Audio

Sigberg Audio

Audioholic
Awesome speakers! I believe I also told you the same thing on ASR, lol. I see that you’re now ready for production, but I had a couple of suggestions, maybe for a future update I guess. Maybe these have been discussed, I didn’t read the whole thread.

An option for tilting the speakers when using subwoofers as stands could be a tilted base under the sub. Maybe in the same walnut veneer, or maybe not? That way you don’t see the gap created with taller feet.

Or make the base of the speaker(the veneer’d part) removable and attach the tilted base there in its place. Or maybe the veneer itself is a removable trim piece that can be replaced with an angled trim piece and base.

The foam gasket of the pro driver lets the speaker down a bit with the grills off and the grills themselves, when in place, let it down too imo. You could recess the woofer a bit further and either attach a trim ring over the frame or do a circular grill that covers the whole driver and sits flush with the baffle. That way, you keep the design language of the large circle, but it’s much cleaner to match the rest of the design. That would also protect that driver while allowing the cool baffle slots and coax to still be visible.

I personally think better grill solutions could lift the entire Sigberg line because, as they are, they don’t seem up to the rest of the effort, build quality and price of your speakers.

I hope my criticism is taken constructively as that’s truly how it’s intended. I love what you’re up to and also that you’re willing to share the process with the rest of us! Best of luck!
Hi, thank you for interesting feedback!

  • To have them sit on top of the subwoofers was an interesting idea during development, but not carried on to production for now. Perhaps some solution for that will come further down the road. :) So the recommended solution now is to use the included custom stands.
  • Foam gasket on the drivers: Some alternatives (like a trim ring) around this has been considered as well. The thing is, and this is impossible to get through in a good way in the pictures, but in real life these speakers look so freaking business and menacing that there's no tomorrow, and the pro driver look just adds to that in a way that just.. works. The drivers are recessed and almost flush, the foam gasket sticks out ever so slightly. I had a professional mastering/mixing engineer here to audit them yesterday. In addition to being impressed by the sound, he couldn't stop commenting how awesome they looked. Opinion and taste will vary, but in my view it's perfect as it is.
  • Grilles: This is of course a matter of opinion as well. These are intentionally ..plain both because it gives in my opinion a pretty cool retro feel to the entire speaker, and also because it transforms the way it looks. It goes from menacing to quite discrete, while the slots on the side still reveleas that there's something different about it. I see where your going with your suggestions, but here we just have different opinions.
  • Grilles #2: I agree that the SBS.1 gets VERY discrete and plain with the grilles, so if we ever get to do an mk2 of those we will probably do something a bit more elaborate with the design. But even those look quite a bit better in real life than we're able to portray through the pictures, in part due to the slanted cabinets and very high quality finish.

So in summary I think we've already thought about all this, and just landed on different conclusions, for better or worse. I still value the input though, every bit I feedback I get is taken into consideration for current and future models. :)
 
E

E.C.

Audiophyte
Hi, thank you for interesting feedback!

  • To have them sit on top of the subwoofers was an interesting idea during development, but not carried on to production for now. Perhaps some solution for that will come further down the road. :) So the recommended solution now is to use the included custom stands.
  • Foam gasket on the drivers: Some alternatives (like a trim ring) around this has been considered as well. The thing is, and this is impossible to get through in a good way in the pictures, but in real life these speakers look so freaking business and menacing that there's no tomorrow, and the pro driver look just adds to that in a way that just.. works. The drivers are recessed and almost flush, the foam gasket sticks out ever so slightly. I had a professional mastering/mixing engineer here to audit them yesterday. In addition to being impressed by the sound, he couldn't stop commenting how awesome they looked. Opinion and taste will vary, but in my view it's perfect as it is.
  • Grilles: This is of course a matter of opinion as well. These are intentionally ..plain both because it gives in my opinion a pretty cool retro feel to the entire speaker, and also because it transforms the way it looks. It goes from menacing to quite discrete, while the slots on the side still reveleas that there's something different about it. I see where your going with your suggestions, but here we just have different opinions.
  • Grilles #2: I agree that the SBS.1 gets VERY discrete and plain with the grilles, so if we ever get to do an mk2 of those we will probably do something a bit more elaborate with the design. But even those look quite a bit better in real life than we're able to portray through the pictures, in part due to the slanted cabinets and very high quality finish.

So in summary I think we've already thought about all this, and just landed on different conclusions, for better or worse. I still value the input though, every bit I feedback I get is taken into consideration for current and future models. :)
Sounds good. They do look great as is and I can Understand the points you make. I figured the enclosure being the exact footprint of your subwoofer was purposeful. And I use 12” Faital drivers with gaskets myself and they do look killer in person. Pro drivers almost always seem to look worse online. Too much flash maybe.
 
Sigberg Audio

Sigberg Audio

Audioholic
Sounds good. They do look great as is and I can Understand the points you make. I figured the enclosure being the exact footprint of your subwoofer was purposeful. And I use 12” Faital drivers with gaskets myself and they do look killer in person. Pro drivers almost always seem to look worse online. Too much flash maybe.
They're actually not exactly the same footprint (the subs are somewhat deeper, but the width is the same). But yes it was intentional to have the exact same width. The thing is, these speakers are pretty complicated to begin with and I wanted to get them to market sooner rather than later, so I decided not to pursue the subwoofer-on-top idea until the speakers are in the market and I can better judge how many will actually choose that solution. A solution for this needed to a) look good b) tilt the speaker c) elevate the speaker since it's not high enough if it's just put on top of the sub. So it would require some testing, prototyping and manufacturing that there was simply not time for if I was to meet the planned release before summer 2023.

Also; No use spending lots of time figuring out and designing a good solution for that if no one will be using it. It's pretty common to put at least one sub somewhere a bit away from the speakers for best response.

So the idea is not abandoned completely, but will not available from the start. Will revisit if it is a feature requested by many.
 
Sigberg Audio

Sigberg Audio

Audioholic
I've had a few questions related to how the Manta needs to be placed in order to ensure that the cardioid is effective (how close to the walls etc). These questions imply that there may be some misunderstandings about how this works in practice.

The slots on the side of the speakers actually cancel out sound as the sound leaves the speakers. It does not cancel out reflections from the walls. The sound is already attentuated when it reaches the walls in the first place.

When measured, the effect is present 0,5m from the speaker, and it's also present 2 m from the speakers. This means that the cardioid effect is present and effective regardless of how the Mantas are placed in the room.
 
Sigberg Audio

Sigberg Audio

Audioholic
Today a pair of Manta monitors and dual 10D subwoofers moved into a large recording, mixing and mastering studio close to Oslo, Norway, where they will be setup in the recording studio and be part of a studio project for the next couple of months! :D

The engineers immediately commented on the bass extension, midbass tightness and overall sound quality ("This sounds so good it's nuts!"). They were also fascinated by the even dispersion across both the entire mixing area and the rest of the room (lounge area where the band and others hang back to listen to the recording). It will be interesting to follow the recording process and how the Mantas perform as tools in their daily work!

render1-low.jpg
render2-low.jpg
render3-low.jpg
 
TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Seriously, I have no life.
Today a pair of Manta monitors and dual 10D subwoofers moved into a large recording, mixing and mastering studio close to Oslo, Norway, where they will be setup in the recording studio and be part of a studio project for the next couple of months! :D

The engineers immediately commented on the bass extension, midbass tightness and overall sound quality ("This sounds so good it's nuts!"). They were also fascinated by the even dispersion across both the entire mixing area and the rest of the room (lounge area where the band and others hang back to listen to the recording). It will be interesting to follow the recording process and how the Mantas perform as tools in their daily work!

View attachment 61166View attachment 61167View attachment 61168
They look really good. I have never been more curious to hear a speaker other than those.
 
Sigberg Audio

Sigberg Audio

Audioholic
First preliminary version of the user manual for Manta is now public, happy to get feedback (here or in DM) if something is confusing or missing. :) It currently does not go in-depth on things like how cardioid works etc, since this is explain in some detail on the website / product pages. So it's more about how to set it up and use it.

 
Sigberg Audio

Sigberg Audio

Audioholic
It looks like Manta is pretty room friendly / adaptable to different situations (which is some of the point with the cardioid technology as well).

Here are responses (left+right average) of a pair of Mantas + dual 10Ds in two very different rooms. I think it's interesting how tidy and relatively similar this looks. Note that none of these setups have any EQ applied above 100hz.

First one is around 18m^2, low ceiling, system set up on the longest wall, slightly assymmetrically (my dedicated listening space), moderately damped with acoustic treatment:
1683110234901.png


Second is same setup (Manta + dual 10D) in a professional studio in their recording / mixing studio (the control room for the actual recording studio where the band records the music). The room is relatively large (around 35m^2), normal ceiling height, almost square form. Also moderately damped with acoustic treatment. The system is set up symmetrically in the middle of the wall separating the control room with the actual recording room. The dip around 100-120hz is suspected to be due to the cavity behind/under the mixing console, need to work more on subwoofer placement to fix that.
1683110263363.png



Both setups both sound very good and also quite similar. :)
 
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Sigberg Audio

Sigberg Audio

Audioholic
No doubt the Pot plants helped with the stabilization of the speaker cabinets

I see your not going to exhibit your speakers at Munich this year, instead you continue to promote the product on a low end home theatre forum.
It's not my studio, so the owner is free to decorate it as he see fit.

Promoting it here is one of many things we do. I didn't sit down in a chair, and go "Hm, should I go to Munich, or should I start a thread on Audioholics. It has to be either or."

Not sure where you're going with this. :)
 
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Trell

Trell

Audioholic Ninja
No doubt the Pot plants helped with the stabilization of the speaker cabinets

I see your not going to exhibit your speakers at Munich this year, instead you continue to promote the product on a low end home theatre forum.
Why are you member of low end home theatre forum? I’m sure there are other forums where you can discuss very expensive speaker cables and interconnects on how they affects the sound quality.
 
Eppie

Eppie

Audioholic Samurai
First preliminary version of the user manual for Manta is now public, happy to get feedback (here or in DM) if something is confusing or missing. :) It currently does not go in-depth on things like how cardioid works etc, since this is explain in some detail on the website / product pages. So it's more about how to set it up and use it.

Page 18 of the manual:
"If you connect one or more subwoofers via a preamp and its pre out
or sub out terminals, you will have to experiment to find the right
gain level. Output levels from preamps vary a great deal. Start with
the gain at 0dB and go to step 4."
I was a bit confused at first because the four bullet points on that page are not numbered. I was looking for a 4 on the page. After reading the entire page it became more clear that step 4 was the fourth bullet point on the page. If you are going to refer to the steps by number I would use numbered bullets rather then just symbols. Yes, it is a small quibble. ;)

Page 27 of the manual:
"After installing the software, locate the Hypex filter designer and
launch the software. Connect the subwoofer to your computer via
the included USB cable, and the software will automatically detect
your subwoofer."
Is that correct? The computer connects to the subwoofer to access the EQ? I thought the computer connected to the USB port on the Manta to use EQ on the Manta. Is there a programmable EQ on the Manta or the subwoofer or both? Page 28 makes reference to a subwoofer connection as well.
 
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Sigberg Audio

Sigberg Audio

Audioholic
Page 18 of the manual:
"If you connect one or more subwoofers via a preamp and its pre out
or sub out terminals, you will have to experiment to find the right
gain level. Output levels from preamps vary a great deal. Start with
the gain at 0dB and go to step 4."
I was a bit confused at first because the four bullet points on that page are not numbered. I was looking for a 4 on the page, After reading the entire page it became more clear that step 4 was the fourth bullet point on the page. If you are going to refer to the steps by number I would use numbered bullets rather then just symbols. Yes, it is a small quibble. ;)

Page 27 of the manual:
"After installing the software, locate the Hypex filter designer and
launch the software. Connect the subwoofer to your computer via
the included USB cable, and the software will automatically detect
your subwoofer."
Is that correct? The computer connects to the subwoofer to access the EQ? I thought the computer connected to the USB port on the Manta to use EQ on the Manta. Is there a programmable EQ on the Manta or the subwoofer or both? Page 28 makes reference to a subwoofer connection as well.
Thank you for those details, I will correct / adjust! Much appreciated. Both the Manta and the subwoofer have programmable EQ, but here the idea was to refer to the Manta! :)
 
TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Seriously, I have no life.
No doubt the Pot plants helped with the stabilization of the speaker cabinets

I see your not going to exhibit your speakers at Munich this year, instead you continue to promote the product on a low end home theatre forum.
May be that system of yours is on the low end. Bjorn has been highly transparent, and I have been absolutely fascinated by his approach and what he has already achieved.

When I look at your system I saw engineering I consider suspect, but that is just a suspicion.

You have two towers of unknown provenance to me. They have two woofers at the bottom of each cabinet, and what looks like two bass mids at the top. Below the mids is a single small midrange, and below that a domed tweeter. The unit appears to be driven by four monoblock amps.

So my question is how is that biamped, and is there an active crossover between those lower drivers and the other speakers? If that is passive biamped via a passive crossover below 400 Hz, then that is low end engineering for a start. I'm also concerned that small mid range is swamped by the other four large drivers.

So before you refer to the rest of us as low end, I think you need to be very transparent about yours. What is the brand and model number of those tower speakers for a start?

Both Bjorn and myself have been very transparent about our systems, now it is your turn.

Just because your system looks monstrous, we can't tell on which end of the monster scale it fits.
 
TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Seriously, I have no life.
It looks like Manta is pretty room friendly / adaptable to different situations (which is some of the point with the cardioid technology as well).

Here are responses (left+right average) of a pair of Mantas + dual 10Ds in two very different rooms. I think it's interesting how tidy and relatively similar this looks. Note that none of these setups have any EQ applied above 100hz.

First one is around 18m^2, low ceiling, system set up on the longest wall, slightly assymmetrically (my dedicated listening space), moderately damped with acoustic treatment:
View attachment 61763

Second is same setup (Manta + dual 10D) in a professional studio in their recording / mixing studio (the control room for the actual recording studio where the band records the music). The room is relatively large (around 35m^2), normal ceiling height, almost square form. Also moderately damped with acoustic treatment. The system is set up symmetrically in the middle of the wall separating the control room with the actual recording room. The dip around 100-120hz is suspected to be due to the cavity behind/under the mixing console, need to work more on subwoofer placement to fix that.
View attachment 61764


Both setups both sound very good and also quite similar. :)
That looks very good. I suspect that null in the lower trace is reflections out of phase.

I would think the recording studio monitor market will be a good one for you. You have competition though from ATC and Genelec in the high end monitor market. That is a superb mid band response.
 
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