• WANTED: Happy members who like to discuss audio and other topics related to our interest. Desire to learn and share knowledge of science required as is 20 years of participation in forums (not all true). Come here to have fun, be ready to be teased and not take online life too seriously. We now measure and review equipment for free! Click here for details.

Emotiva Airmotiv B1+ Review (Bookshelf Speaker)

sarumbear

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Aug 15, 2020
Messages
1,258
Likes
1,049
Location
Southampton, UK

beaRA

Member
Joined
Apr 16, 2021
Messages
77
Likes
93
To start up some conversation on the DUT again:

I think something that makes these speakers somewhat unique in the budget category is the inclusion of a folded ribbon tweeter. Can we point to anything specifically in the measurements that show an advantage or disadvantage over the more common dome tweeter?
 

dfuller

Major Contributor
Joined
Apr 26, 2020
Messages
1,385
Likes
1,746
To be clear: An AMT is not a ribbon. It doesn't behave the same way at all. A ribbon has the whole element move in the magnetic field like a ribbon mic in reverse, where an AMT behaves kind of like a bellows (i.e. the pleats separating and contracting create the sound pressure).
With an AMT you get a great deal more effective surface area because it's pleated. This means it can get louder without severe distortion, but the extra surface area doesn't affect directivity too much because it doesn't affect the dimensions of the tweeter overall (as I understand it). They can be very transparent and wide bandwidth.

Problem is, good ones are expensive as nuts, and the cheap ones are often full of issues (worse than cheap domes, which can get very cheap before getting unusably nasty).
 

Rick Sykora

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Jan 14, 2020
Messages
1,592
Likes
2,575
Location
Stow, Ohio USA
To be clear: An AMT is not a ribbon. It doesn't behave the same way at all. A ribbon has the whole element move in the magnetic field like a ribbon mic in reverse, where an AMT behaves kind of like a bellows (i.e. the pleats separating and contracting create the sound pressure).
With an AMT you get a great deal more effective surface area because it's pleated. This means it can get louder without severe distortion, but the extra surface area doesn't affect directivity too much because it doesn't affect the dimensions of the tweeter overall (as I understand it). They can be very transparent and wide bandwidth.

Problem is, good ones are expensive as nuts, and the cheap ones are often full of issues (worse than cheap domes, which can get very cheap before getting unusably nasty).

The thing is Emotiva marketing is calling their tweeter a folded ribbon. Maybe they did some market research and found ribbons have more appeal than AMTs? But otherwise, the rest of your post still holds. :cool:
 

dfuller

Major Contributor
Joined
Apr 26, 2020
Messages
1,385
Likes
1,746
The thing is Emotiva marketing is calling their tweeter a folded ribbon. Maybe they did some market research and found ribbons have more appeal than AMTs? But otherwise, the rest of your post still holds. :cool:
Oh they definitely aren't the only ones marketing their AMTs as "folded ribbons" - Adam, Eve, HEDD do it too.
 

beaRA

Member
Joined
Apr 16, 2021
Messages
77
Likes
93
To be clear: An AMT is not a ribbon. It doesn't behave the same way at all. A ribbon has the whole element move in the magnetic field like a ribbon mic in reverse, where an AMT behaves kind of like a bellows (i.e. the pleats separating and contracting create the sound pressure).
With an AMT you get a great deal more effective surface area because it's pleated. This means it can get louder without severe distortion, but the extra surface area doesn't affect directivity too much because it doesn't affect the dimensions of the tweeter overall (as I understand it). They can be very transparent and wide bandwidth.

Problem is, good ones are expensive as nuts, and the cheap ones are often full of issues (worse than cheap domes, which can get very cheap before getting unusably nasty).
I was just using Emotiva's marketing language, but I wasn't aware of the distinction so thanks! The near-field measurements don't suggest a particularly low crossover so I suppose bandwidth didn't motivate Emotiva's selection. Considering the overall performance, can we conclude Emotiva has achieved something special here with an AMT in this price range?
 

gfinlays

Member
Forum Donor
Joined
May 30, 2020
Messages
58
Likes
77
I've been running a pair of these in my office/Man Cave setup for a few months. Use them with an RPi4 running RoPieee and a Bluesound Node2i into an SMSL Sanskrit 10th V2 with a vintage (fully recapped) Rotel RA870.

Took delivery of an Airmotiv SE8 Flex sub today. Wired in between the Pre Out and Main In on the Rotel and set up for 100Hz crossover. Sounds bloody brilliant and punches well above its weight at the price point!
 

Wseaton

Member
Joined
Aug 11, 2021
Messages
18
Likes
18
For the record I got a pair of T0 towers for my office and sent them back. I just wanted a pair of well behaved and reasonably transparent towers for my office. Since then I've heard a pair of T1s at a co workers and have the same complaints.

Emotiva makes marvelously neutral speakers for their price point. The air motive ribbon does its job superbly. Huge sounstage and lots of detail with utterly no coloration or fatigue. Thats what ribbons do. And that's where it ends. The rest of the speaker is utterly 'meh'. The midrange lacks any character, detail, and doesn't compliment the tweeter. Bass is just there and my ears detect a bit of that 90s poly driver 'plop'. This makes the speaker sound cold and rather dull from the mids down. Ive heard many ribbon based speakers over the years and have yet to hear a ribbon to cone midrange design not have the same issue. Ribbon to dome is fine. Ribbon to cone seems to have this problem due to the different physics cones are limit to. This speaker series would have been better off using a paper mid to compliment the ribbon.

I'm sure many people will disagree with me and I'm not knocking Emotiva. I just subjectively find the line 'cold' sounding and even a budget speaker can't be a one trick pony. My .02 cents.
 

CumSum

Member
Joined
Dec 10, 2019
Messages
97
Likes
91
For the record I got a pair of T0 towers for my office and sent them back. I just wanted a pair of well behaved and reasonably transparent towers for my office. Since then I've heard a pair of T1s at a co workers and have the same complaints.

Emotiva makes marvelously neutral speakers for their price point. The air motive ribbon does its job superbly. Huge sounstage and lots of detail with utterly no coloration or fatigue. Thats what ribbons do. And that's where it ends. The rest of the speaker is utterly 'meh'. The midrange lacks any character, detail, and doesn't compliment the tweeter. Bass is just there and my ears detect a bit of that 90s poly driver 'plop'. This makes the speaker sound cold and rather dull from the mids down. Ive heard many ribbon based speakers over the years and have yet to hear a ribbon to cone midrange design not have the same issue. Ribbon to dome is fine. Ribbon to cone seems to have this problem due to the different physics cones are limit to. This speaker series would have been better off using a paper mid to compliment the ribbon.

I'm sure many people will disagree with me and I'm not knocking Emotiva. I just subjectively find the line 'cold' sounding and even a budget speaker can't be a one trick pony. My .02 cents.
I'll disagree with you, but I get what you are saying and I would recommend you do these things.

First off, every speaker system needs subs and it doesn't matter how low your speakers go. Getting the bass right elevates the sound across the entire spectrum. It gives the sound warmth. So I would say judge the speaker when it is properly augmented with subs.

Next would be room correction and target curves. You need room correction to get good bass and a target curve helps shift the tone of the sound to your liking. DIRAC does both wonderfully well.

I only use AMT Studio monitors. I've had two from Adam and two from Emotiva and both do everything wonderfully well. My Emotiva Stealth 8's really boggle my mind as to how well the AMT is integrated in with a very large 8" woofer. With all those steps described above, the sound is practically flawless across the entire spectrum.
 

Ashoka

Member
Joined
Jul 1, 2018
Messages
6
Likes
1
I had to laugh when I saw, 'the product is presently shown as Unavailable on the Emotiva website'. I think Emotiva is respected as a budget hifi direct seller, but their website often has multiple products shown as 'Unavailable'. They also have a habit of introducing new pieces in their product.. This is probably a consequence of supply and demand but I've never bought an Emotiva product b
IMHO it is marketing strategy, you leave your email id. Future is in having data base, not in having shops.
 

Persik

Member
Joined
Jun 24, 2021
Messages
16
Likes
3
It would've been nice to see the review of their top of the line speakers, T2+, C2+, E2, A1...any chance?
 

MZKM

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Dec 1, 2018
Messages
3,801
Likes
9,431
Location
Land O’ Lakes, FL
It would've been nice to see the review of their top of the line speakers, T2+, C2+, E2, A1...any chance?
I’m interested in either T1+ or T2+ because the midrange could make or break it.

I’d be super interested in seeing the C1+ & C2+ to see what trade-off there are. The C2+ has higher sensitivity, but likely has comb filtering issues due to dual midranges, but also has a higher crossover for the tweeter so likely distortion/breakup is better.
 

nathan

Active Member
Joined
May 24, 2020
Messages
162
Likes
121
It would've been nice to see the review of their top of the line speakers, T2+, C2+, E2, A1...any chance?
All you got to do is contact amirm and see if he has time for you to send him one of these for testing. If he doesn't have time, you can likely send one to Erin for testing.
 
Top Bottom