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ELAC UBR62 Speaker Review

hardisj

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Copy/paste from my site. Review may not translate from my site so here is the link to the full review on my site:
https://www.erinsaudiocorner.com/loudspeakers/elac_ubr62/


ELAC UBR62 Speaker Review
  • Monday, Jun 21, 2021
DSC02053.JPG

Foreword / YouTube Video Review
The review on this website is a brief overview and summary of the objective performance of this speaker. It is not intended to be a deep dive. Moreso, this is information for those who prefer “just the facts” and prefer to have the data without the filler. Discussion about the data and my subjective thoughts can be found in my video below.
<<coming soon>>

For a primer on what the data means, please watch my series of videos where I provide in-depth discussion and examples of how to read the graphics presented hereon.
https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLnIxFR_ey0b37Ex4KV2mBz-kYB7QLffR1


Information and Photos
The ELAC UBR62 is a 3-way bookshelf speaker featuring a 6.5-inch midwoofer, 4-inch concentric with 1-inch dome tweeter placed coaxially.
MSRP for a pair of the UBR62 speakers is currently $999 USD.
DSC02061.JPG





CTA-2034 (SPINORAMA) and Accompanying Data
All data collected using Klippel’s Near-Field Scanner. The Near-Field-Scanner 3D (NFS) offers a fully automated acoustic measurement of direct sound radiated from the source under test. The radiated sound is determined in any desired distance and angle in the 3D space outside the scanning surface. Directivity, sound power, SPL response and many more key figures are obtained for any kind of loudspeaker and audio system in near field applications (e.g. studio monitors, mobile devices) as well as far field applications (e.g. professional audio systems). Utilizing a minimum of measurement points, a comprehensive data set is generated containing the loudspeaker’s high resolution, free field sound radiation in the near and far field. For a detailed explanation of how the NFS works and the science behind it, please watch the below discussion with designer Christian Bellmann:

The reference plane in this test is at the tweeter.

Measurements are provided in a format in accordance with the Standard Method of Measurement for In-Home Loudspeakers (ANSI/CTA-2034-A R-2020). For more information, please see this link.

CTA-2034 / SPINORAMA:
CEA2034%20--%20ELAC%20UBR62.png



Early Reflections Breakout:
Early%20Reflections.png


Estimated In-Room Response:
Estimated%20In-Room%20Response.png


Horizontal Frequency Response (0° to ±90°):
SPL%20Horizontal.png


Vertical Frequency Response (0° to ±40°):
SPL%20Vertical.png


Horizontal Contour Plot (not normalized):
ELAC%20UBR62_Horizontal_Spectrogram_Full.png


Horizontal Contour Plot (normalized):
ELAC%20UBR62%20Beamwidth_Horizontal.png


Vertical Contour Plot (not normalized):
ELAC%20UBR62_Vertical_Spectrogram_Full.png


Vertical Contour Plot (normalized):
ELAC%20UBR62%20Beamwidth_Vertical.png




Additional Measurements

Impedance Magnitude and Phase + Equivalent Peak Dissipation Resistance (EPDR)

For those who do not know what EPDR is (ahem, me until 2020), Keith Howard came up with this metric which he defined in a 2007 article for Stereophile as:
… simply the resistive load that would give rise to the same peak device dissipation as the speaker itself.​
A note from Dr. Jack Oclee-Brown of Kef (who supplied the formula for calculating EPDR):
Just a note of caution that the EPDR derivation is based on a class-B output stage so it’s valid for typical class-AB amps but certainly not for class-A and probably has only marginal relevance for class-D amps (would love to hear from a class-D expert on this topic).​
ELAC%20UBR62_Impedance_0.1v.png

And for those who are curious what happens when you apply more voltage, below is a comparison of the EPDR between 0.10vRMS input and 2.83vRMS input.
ELAC%20UBR62_EDPR_Compare.png


On-Axis Response Linearity
ELAC%20UBR62%20FR_Linearity.png

“Globe” Plots
These plots are generated from exporting the Klippel data to text files. I then process that data with my own MATLAB script to provide what you see. These are not part of any software packages and are unique to my tests.
Horizontal Polar (Globe) Plot:
This represents the sound field at 2 meters - above 200Hz - per the legend in the upper left.
ELAC%20UBR62_360_Horizontal_Polar.png



Vertical Polar (Globe) Plot:
This represents the sound field at 2 meters - above 200Hz - per the legend in the upper left.
ELAC%20UBR62_360_Vertical_Polar.png



Harmonic Distortion
Harmonic Distortion at 86dB @ 1m:
ELAC%20UBR62%20%20--%20%20Harmonic%20Distortion%20%2886dB%20%40%201m%29.png


Harmonic Distortion at 96dB @ 1m:
ELAC%20UBR62%20%20--%20%20Harmonic%20Distortion%20%2896dB%20%40%201m%29.png




Dynamic Range (Instantaneous Compression Test)
The below graphic indicates just how much SPL is lost (compression) or gained (enhancement; usually due to distortion) when the speaker is played at higher output volumes instantly via a 2.7 second logarithmic sine sweep referenced to 76dB at 1 meter. The signals are played consecutively without any additional stimulus applied. Then normalized against the 76dB result.
The tests are conducted in this fashion:
  1. 76dB at 1 meter (baseline; black)
  2. 86dB at 1 meter (red)
  3. 96dB at 1 meter (blue)
  4. 102dB at 1 meter (purple)
The purpose of this test is to illustrate how much (if at all) the output changes as a speaker’s components temperature increases (i.e., voice coils, crossover components) instantaneously.
ELAC%20UBR62_Compression.png


Long Term Compression Tests
The below graphics indicate how much SPL is lost or gained in the long-term as a speaker plays at the same output level for 2 minutes, in intervals. Each graphic represents a different SPL: 86dB and 96dB both at 1 meter.
The purpose of this test is to illustrate how much (if at all) the output changes as a speaker’s components temperature increases (i.e., voice coils, crossover components).
The tests are conducted in this fashion:
  1. “Cold” logarithmic sine sweep (no stimulus applied beforehand)
  2. Multitone stimulus played at desired SPL/distance for 2 minutes; intended to represent music signal
  3. Interim logarithmic sine sweep (no stimulus applied beforehand) (Red in graphic)
  4. Multitone stimulus played at desired SPL/distance for 2 minutes; intended to represent music signal
  5. Final logarithmic sine sweep (no stimulus applied beforehand) (Blue in graphic)
The red and blue lines represent changes in the output compared to the initial “cold” test.
ELAC%20UBR62_Long_Term_86_Compression.png

ELAC%20UBR62_Long_Term_96_Compression.png




Parting / Random Thoughts
If you want to see the music I use for evaluating speakers subjectively, see my Spotify playlist.
  • Subjective listening was mainly in the farfield at 3-4 meters in an open floorplan living room. Subjective listening was conducted at 80-95dB at these distances and occasionally higher. Higher volumes were done simply to test the output capability in case one wants to try to sit further away.
  • For a coincident/coaxial speaker, the dispersion is rather wide. And I liked that. If you follow my reviews enough you know I like a wide soundstage and that is typically related directly to the radiation pattern of the speaker. I attribute this to the rather shallow cone profile of the midrange relative to other coaxial speakers I have tested.
  • Similarly, notice the on-axis response is a bit slanted downward. Now, look at the estimated in-room response. Notice how the estimated in room response has an excellent downward linearity to it? In my experience, if the on-axis response of this speaker were actually flat the in-room response would be a bit flat in the tweeter region, making the overall sound to present itself as a bit “bright” or “treble heavy” at the listening position. In other words, wide radiation speakers reflect more energy back to the listening position so - in my opinion - the design response was purposely tilted downward so that the response at the seated position would result in an overall sloping response rather than a response that has a “knee”.
  • On-axis listening for most coaxial designs is typically the worst location to listen within. These speakers are best listened to slightly toed in or out (depending on how much room interaction you want) by about 10°.
  • With the low sensitivity of about 83dB @ 2.83v/1m, these will need some power to get to higher output levels. But also consider what the dynamic compression tests indicate; that there is compression going above 96dB. Realistically, this would be expected of a small, lower sensitivity speaker. And one would also use a subwoofer to help alleviate the bass driver of trying to overextend itself.
As stated in the Foreword, this written review is purposely a cliff’s notes version. For more details about the performance (objectively and subjectively) please watch the YouTube video.


Support / Donate
If you like what you see here and want to help me keep it going, please consider donating via the PayPal Contribute button below. https://www.erinsaudiocorner.com/contribute/
 
Last edited:

Matias

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Kali IN-8 V2 is similar in design, but active, cheaper and measures better imo. Tough competition for the ELAC...
 

McFly

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Kali IN-8 V2 is similar in design, but active, cheaper and measures better imo. Tough competition for the ELAC...
But designed for Nearfield use

My take: The UBR62 lools like its got a port resonance around 800hz, edge diffraction or crossover error around 3khz and another (tweeter in midrange waveguide effect?) Diffraction at 5khz. Being diffraction, they tend to sort themselves out "in-room"/off-axis.

Whats interesting is the bass dip. Oversized lowpass inductor or woofer driver character? erin did you have more then one speaker to confirm?
 
Last edited:

astrex342

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Thanks for the review!
Dispersion looks better and wider than kef r3, albeit with limited distortion and spl capabilities.
 
OP
hardisj

hardisj

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Whats interesting is the bass dip. Oversized lowpass inductor or woofer driver character? erin did you have more then one speaker to confirm?

tenor.gif


(^ that is supposed to be interpreted as being funny, in case it doesn't come across)


The NF measurements provide confirmation. But... as always... I also did a quick GP test to make sure this was "real". It was. I didn't post it in my review because people who don't know what goes in to a groundplane measurement will go "it's not a perfect match" and then I'd have to deal with that nonsense as it spreads like wildfire. Also, I've done enough to prove the NFS measruements are accurate and I feel like proving the results with a GP test every time takes away from the legitimacy of the NFS data. But, nonetheless, I've attached the GP comparison below.*

* ground plane measurements were gated, thus the LF resolution isn't likely to show the same steep drop-off. Also, the speaker was slightly tilted but not much so the HF isn't expected to line up. BSC is a bit less accurate on a GP measurement. But, all that said, the NFS measurements are within expectation of the groundplane measurement (or, vice versa).
** measurement was done with a different mic. Which doesn't matter because the concern is LF. Long cable run is likely the explanation for the ~0.75dB level difference but that is splitting hairs.


Ground Plane vs Anechoic On-Axis.png
 
Last edited:

audiotruth

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Thanks for the review. Intermodulation distortion is supposed to be a drawback of concentric designs. Can you measure the IMD using frequencies that excite both the tweeter and midrange?
 

Beave

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Well, the IMD issue with coaxial designs (which isn't even IMD in some ways, more like a modulation of off-axis response as the midrange/waveguide moves in and out) is only much of an issue with two-way designs, where one could expect the midrange/waveguide to be moving a lot. With a three way, such as these, the midrange/waveguide isn't going to be moving much, so it should be a non-issue.
 

restorer-john

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The ELAC being well below average sensitivity and distorting at higher volumes isn’t doing it much favors for living room usage, especially for movies.

It looks to be a rotten combination for US$1k, if you ask me.

And they call it a "reference series". :facepalm:
 

napilopez

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Copy/paste from my site. Review may not translate from my site so here is the link to the full review on my site:
https://www.erinsaudiocorner.com/loudspeakers/elac_ubr62/


ELAC UBR62 Speaker Review
  • Monday, Jun 21, 2021
DSC02053.JPG

Foreword / YouTube Video Review
The review on this website is a brief overview and summary of the objective performance of this speaker. It is not intended to be a deep dive. Moreso, this is information for those who prefer “just the facts” and prefer to have the data without the filler. Discussion about the data and my subjective thoughts can be found in my video below.
<<coming soon>>

For a primer on what the data means, please watch my series of videos where I provide in-depth discussion and examples of how to read the graphics presented hereon.
https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLnIxFR_ey0b37Ex4KV2mBz-kYB7QLffR1


Information and Photos
The ELAC UBR62 is a 3-way bookshelf speaker featuring a 6.5-inch midwoofer, 4-inch concentric with 1-inch dome tweeter placed coaxially.
MSRP for a pair of the UBR62 speakers is currently $999 USD.
DSC02061.JPG





CTA-2034 (SPINORAMA) and Accompanying Data
All data collected using Klippel’s Near-Field Scanner. The Near-Field-Scanner 3D (NFS) offers a fully automated acoustic measurement of direct sound radiated from the source under test. The radiated sound is determined in any desired distance and angle in the 3D space outside the scanning surface. Directivity, sound power, SPL response and many more key figures are obtained for any kind of loudspeaker and audio system in near field applications (e.g. studio monitors, mobile devices) as well as far field applications (e.g. professional audio systems). Utilizing a minimum of measurement points, a comprehensive data set is generated containing the loudspeaker’s high resolution, free field sound radiation in the near and far field. For a detailed explanation of how the NFS works and the science behind it, please watch the below discussion with designer Christian Bellmann:

The reference plane in this test is at the tweeter.

Measurements are provided in a format in accordance with the Standard Method of Measurement for In-Home Loudspeakers (ANSI/CTA-2034-A R-2020). For more information, please see this link.

CTA-2034 / SPINORAMA:
CEA2034%20--%20ELAC%20UBR62.png



Early Reflections Breakout:
Early%20Reflections.png


Estimated In-Room Response:
Estimated%20In-Room%20Response.png


Horizontal Frequency Response (0° to ±90°):
SPL%20Horizontal.png


Vertical Frequency Response (0° to ±40°):
SPL%20Vertical.png


Horizontal Contour Plot (not normalized):
ELAC%20UBR62_Horizontal_Spectrogram_Full.png


Horizontal Contour Plot (normalized):
ELAC%20UBR62%20Beamwidth_Horizontal.png


Vertical Contour Plot (not normalized):
ELAC%20UBR62_Vertical_Spectrogram_Full.png


Vertical Contour Plot (normalized):
ELAC%20UBR62%20Beamwidth_Vertical.png




Additional Measurements

Impedance Magnitude and Phase + Equivalent Peak Dissipation Resistance (EPDR)

For those who do not know what EPDR is (ahem, me until 2020), Keith Howard came up with this metric which he defined in a 2007 article for Stereophile as:
… simply the resistive load that would give rise to the same peak device dissipation as the speaker itself.​
A note from Dr. Jack Oclee-Brown of Kef (who supplied the formula for calculating EPDR):
Just a note of caution that the EPDR derivation is based on a class-B output stage so it’s valid for typical class-AB amps but certainly not for class-A and probably has only marginal relevance for class-D amps (would love to hear from a class-D expert on this topic).​
ELAC%20UBR62_Impedance_0.1v.png

And for those who are curious what happens when you apply more voltage, below is a comparison of the EPDR between 0.10vRMS input and 2.83vRMS input.
ELAC%20UBR62_EDPR_Compare.png


On-Axis Response Linearity
ELAC%20UBR62%20FR_Linearity.png

“Globe” Plots
These plots are generated from exporting the Klippel data to text files. I then process that data with my own MATLAB script to provide what you see. These are not part of any software packages and are unique to my tests.
Horizontal Polar (Globe) Plot:
This represents the sound field at 2 meters - above 200Hz - per the legend in the upper left.
ELAC%20UBR62_360_Horizontal_Polar.png



Vertical Polar (Globe) Plot:
This represents the sound field at 2 meters - above 200Hz - per the legend in the upper left.
ELAC%20UBR62_360_Vertical_Polar.png



Harmonic Distortion
Harmonic Distortion at 86dB @ 1m:
ELAC%20UBR62%20%20--%20%20Harmonic%20Distortion%20%2886dB%20%40%201m%29.png


Harmonic Distortion at 96dB @ 1m:
ELAC%20UBR62%20%20--%20%20Harmonic%20Distortion%20%2896dB%20%40%201m%29.png




Dynamic Range (Instantaneous Compression Test)
The below graphic indicates just how much SPL is lost (compression) or gained (enhancement; usually due to distortion) when the speaker is played at higher output volumes instantly via a 2.7 second logarithmic sine sweep referenced to 76dB at 1 meter. The signals are played consecutively without any additional stimulus applied. Then normalized against the 76dB result.
The tests are conducted in this fashion:
  1. 76dB at 1 meter (baseline; black)
  2. 86dB at 1 meter (red)
  3. 96dB at 1 meter (blue)
  4. 102dB at 1 meter (purple)
The purpose of this test is to illustrate how much (if at all) the output changes as a speaker’s components temperature increases (i.e., voice coils, crossover components) instantaneously.
ELAC%20UBR62_Compression.png


Long Term Compression Tests
The below graphics indicate how much SPL is lost or gained in the long-term as a speaker plays at the same output level for 2 minutes, in intervals. Each graphic represents a different SPL: 86dB and 96dB both at 1 meter.
The purpose of this test is to illustrate how much (if at all) the output changes as a speaker’s components temperature increases (i.e., voice coils, crossover components).
The tests are conducted in this fashion:
  1. “Cold” logarithmic sine sweep (no stimulus applied beforehand)
  2. Multitone stimulus played at desired SPL/distance for 2 minutes; intended to represent music signal
  3. Interim logarithmic sine sweep (no stimulus applied beforehand) (Red in graphic)
  4. Multitone stimulus played at desired SPL/distance for 2 minutes; intended to represent music signal
  5. Final logarithmic sine sweep (no stimulus applied beforehand) (Blue in graphic)
The red and blue lines represent changes in the output compared to the initial “cold” test.
ELAC%20UBR62_Long_Term_86_Compression.png

ELAC%20UBR62_Long_Term_96_Compression.png




Parting / Random Thoughts
If you want to see the music I use for evaluating speakers subjectively, see my Spotify playlist.
  • Subjective listening was mainly in the farfield at 3-4 meters in an open floorplan living room. Subjective listening was conducted at 80-95dB at these distances and occasionally higher. Higher volumes were done simply to test the output capability in case one wants to try to sit further away.
  • For a coincident/coaxial speaker, the dispersion is rather wide. And I liked that. If you follow my reviews enough you know I like a wide soundstage and that is typically related directly to the radiation pattern of the speaker. I attribute this to the rather shallow cone profile of the midrange relative to other coaxial speakers I have tested.
  • Similarly, notice the on-axis response is a bit slanted downward. Now, look at the estimated in-room response. Notice how the estimated in room response has an excellent downward linearity to it? In my experience, if the on-axis response of this speaker were actually flat the in-room response would be a bit flat in the tweeter region, making the overall sound to present itself as a bit “bright” or “treble heavy” at the listening position. In other words, wide radiation speakers reflect more energy back to the listening position so - in my opinion - the design response was purposely tilted downward so that the response at the seated position would result in an overall sloping response rather than a response that has a “knee”.
  • On-axis listening for most coaxial designs is typically the worst location to listen within. These speakers are best listened to slightly toed in or out (depending on how much room interaction you want) by about 10°.
  • With the low sensitivity of about 83dB @ 2.83v/1m, these will need some power to get to higher output levels. But also consider what the dynamic compression tests indicate; that there is compression going above 96dB. Realistically, this would be expected of a small, lower sensitivity speaker. And one would also use a subwoofer to help alleviate the bass driver of trying to overextend itself.
As stated in the Foreword, this written review is purposely a cliff’s notes version. For more details about the performance (objectively and subjectively) please watch the YouTube video.


Support / Donate
If you like what you see here and want to help me keep it going, please consider donating via the PayPal Contribute button below. https://www.erinsaudiocorner.com/contribute/

This looks fantastic to me!

Agreed about the wide directivity; this is unusually wide for a coaxial speaker or most waveguidey speakers. That's likely to be more noticeable -- probably in a positive way -- than any distortion issues imo.

Thanks for the review!
Dispersion looks better and wider than kef r3, albeit with limited distortion and spl capabilities.

I don't know if "better" but certainly wider. For reference, here's how the UBR62 compares to the KEF R3. Below are plotted the Listening Window and Sidewall components of the early reflections, as well as the total horizontal ERDI.

UBR62 vs R3.png


The UBR62 is way wider in the most significant horizontal reflections. The sidewall reflections are a good 3-5 dB louder relative to the LW between 2K to 8K

It is also significantly wider than the IN-8 V2, albeit not quite as much as the difference vs the R3

UBR62 vs IN-8.png
 

thewas

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Parting / Random Thoughts
Erin, thank you for the great measurements, which did you enjoy more in your listening sessions, the Kali IN-8 v2 or this and for which reasons(s)?
 
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pierre

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Perf score is 5.6 (with a perfect subwoofer 7.8).

PIR is very good and an EQ will not help much. Let's see: score increase marginally to 5.8 (with a perfect subwoofer 8.1).
Similar the Kali-IN8v2, EQ is not really usefull.

Code:
EQ for Elac Uni-Fi Reference UBR62 computed from ErinsAudioCorner data
Preference Score 5.6 with EQ 5.8
Generated from http://github.com/pierreaubert/spinorama/generate_peqs.py v0.8
Dated: 2021-06-28-05:48:28

Preamp: -2.3 dB

Filter  1: ON PK Fc  6623 Hz Gain +2.09 dB Q 6.40
Filter  2: ON PK Fc  1267 Hz Gain +0.92 dB Q 3.03
Filter  3: ON PK Fc   687 Hz Gain -1.47 dB Q 12.00
Filter  4: ON PK Fc 10279 Hz Gain -1.15 dB Q 5.67
Filter  5: ON PK Fc   603 Hz Gain -0.87 dB Q 12.00
Filter  6: ON PK Fc  7291 Hz Gain +0.40 dB Q 12.00
Filter  7: ON PK Fc  6157 Hz Gain +0.34 dB Q 12.00
Filter  8: ON PK Fc   770 Hz Gain +1.19 dB Q 12.00
Filter  9: ON PK Fc   977 Hz Gain +0.85 dB Q 12.00
Filter 10: ON PK Fc   421 Hz Gain +0.67 dB Q 3.02
Filter 11: ON PK Fc  1528 Hz Gain +0.24 dB Q 12.00
Filter 12: ON PK Fc  1682 Hz Gain -0.58 dB Q 12.00
Filter 13: ON PK Fc  2014 Hz Gain +0.26 dB Q 12.00
Filter 14: ON PK Fc  2187 Hz Gain -0.49 dB Q 12.00
Filter 15: ON PK Fc  1121 Hz Gain -0.75 dB Q 12.00
Filter 16: ON PK Fc  3986 Hz Gain -0.61 dB Q 6.34
Filter 17: ON PK Fc  5362 Hz Gain -0.67 dB Q 11.16
Filter 18: ON PK Fc  3021 Hz Gain +0.64 dB Q 8.54
Filter 19: ON PK Fc 14470 Hz Gain -0.95 dB Q 3.85
filters0.png

filters1.png

Data from Erin + EQ gives us:

2cols.jpg
 
Last edited:
OP
hardisj

hardisj

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Dispersion looks better and wider than kef r3, albeit with limited distortion and spl capabilities.

I'm with @napilopez. The dispersion isn't better. It is different, though. The Kef does a better job of providing controlled directivity. However, the dispersion with the ELAC is wider through the midrange which is one thing that stood out to me when I was listening. I expected the results to show this and they did. I mentioned this in the review as well:

  • For a coincident/coaxial speaker, the dispersion is rather wide. And I liked that. If you follow my reviews enough you know I like a wide soundstage and that is typically related directly to the radiation pattern of the speaker. I attribute this to the rather shallow cone profile of the midrange relative to other coaxial speakers I have tested.
  • Similarly, notice the on-axis response is a bit slanted downward. Now, look at the estimated in-room response. Notice how the estimated in room response has an excellent downward linearity to it? In my experience, if the on-axis response of this speaker were actually flat the in-room response would be a bit flat in the tweeter region, making the overall sound to present itself as a bit “bright” or “treble heavy” at the listening position. In other words, wide radiation speakers reflect more energy back to the listening position so - in my opinion - the design response was purposely tilted downward so that the response at the seated position would result in an overall sloping response rather than a response that has a “knee”.
 

Matias

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That wide dispersion on 7 kHz though.... Did you notice any excessive sibilance (S's and SH's)?
 

MrPeabody

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Another amazingly thorough, excellent review. Thanks Erin!
 
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