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Grimani Systems Rixos-L Review (Active DSP Speaker)

Rate this speaker:

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 12 7.1%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 51 30.4%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther

    Votes: 85 50.6%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 20 11.9%

  • Total voters
    168

beagleman

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Looks like an excellent speaker that despite all the naysayers is actually competitively priced for what it does.

Designing for outboard Active amplification /DSP (remote rack mounting) has important benefits for theater applications where noise floor/heat gain from electronics /light pollution from status LEDs are best handled in this manner with the passive speaker in room and everything else in an equipment room outside the listening space. Actively driven topology avoids inconsistency/thermal issues with passive crossover components and ability to get next to perfect driver integration.

The only competitors I'm aware of in this high SPL and sound quality category would be JBL M2, genelec S360, and ascendo ccrm12-mkII. Getting 105dB peaks at your second row of seats 18-20ft from the loudspeaker isn't easy (or cheap)

Agreed with other posts that the real secret sauce is in the calibration and room planning services of Tony's outfit. I'm confident many of his rooms would embarrass most DIY efforts at high fidelity 2 channel perfection.
I think you are over estimating what it costs to do this level of sound quality and sound level.

Just Cause the competitors to this are charging about the same, does not change the fact, that it is using 2 relatively common "Pro audio" woofers and a high output compression/horn/waveguide type high frequency driver.

Nothing "Screams" $8,200 to me.

I see 2-$200 Faitial pro woofers and possibly a $100.00 High frequency driver. That is about $500.00 in drivers.
Not to be a downer, but this looks more like a $2,500-$3,000 speaker to me.

Do you think that box and amp, even with DSP really costs $7,700??
 

Bartl007

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I think you are over estimating what it costs to do this level of sound quality and sound level.

Just Cause the competitors to this are charging about the same, does not change the fact, that it is using 2 relatively common "Pro audio" woofers and a high output compression/horn/waveguide type high frequency driver.

Nothing "Screams" $8,200 to me.

I see 2-$200 Faitial pro woofers and possibly a $100.00 High frequency driver. That is about $500.00 in drivers.
Not to be a downer, but this looks more like a $2,500-$3,000 speaker to me.

Do you think that box and amp, even with DSP really costs $7,700??
I think you're mistaking parts cost for the cost of time, engineering, modeling, testing, and retesting that it takes to build a competent loudspeaker.

As an example…Jbl M2- just a $550 tweeter and a $400 pro woofer. I'll even give you the benefit of the doubt that you're a miniDSP master samurai and can tune the DSP to perfection. What you've created is a Hiss monster because you forgot to pad the sensitivity of the tweeter. And I hope you didn't forget your PhD in mathematics so you can design and patent your own waveguide/horn so that your creation is actually listenable.

How many mistakes have you made and learned from over the years designing and building hundreds of loudspeakers?

This is what you are paying for.

If you think you can do a better job, more power to you, just don't forget to factor in the cost of your time.

There are other cheaper options for sure (I'm partial to the M2 which is about half the cost if you know how to shop around), but I welcome another competent contender in the marketplace.

My guess is that most people purchasing this speaker as a part of a larger home theater system are also getting a % off the msrp to help them feel like they got a good deal.

FWIW I just remembered another competitor with similar design goals and execution is PRO audio technology (Paul Hales company). Too many comparable models to list here.
 
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amirm

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I see 2-$200 Faitial pro woofers and possibly a $100.00 High frequency driver. That is about $500.00 in drivers.
Not to be a downer, but this looks more like a $2,500-$3,000 speaker to me.
How did you reckon that? The amplifier costs another $1,500. That brings up to $2000 in raw material cost. No way you can sell a finished speaker for $2,500 or even $3,000. You need 45% dealer margin. And you still have to build and test the speaker in US (they burn it in for extended hours). Maybe you don't get to $8,000 but not far from it.
 

milosz

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Who can afford to set up a 7.2.2 home theater system with speakers this costly?

I suppose you would then feed the approximately $40,000 speaker system with a Pre-Pro whose D/A converters have SINAD of 65 dB.....all the pre-pro's I've seen are not what you'd call "transparent"...

Madness.
 

voodooless

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I suppose you would then feed the approximately $40,000 speaker system with a Pre-Pro whose D/A converters have SINAD of 65 dB.....all the pre-pro's I've seen are not what you'd call "transparent"...
What AVP is that? This one will get you to 99 SINAD:


Others in that ballpark are out there, tested at ASR. Even a cheap Denon AVR with pre-out gets you there is you want.
 

hansik

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I think you're mistaking parts cost for the cost of time, engineering, modeling, testing, and retesting that it takes to build a competent loudspeaker.

As an example…Jbl M2- just a $550 tweeter and a $400 pro woofer. I'll even give you the benefit of the doubt that you're a miniDSP master samurai and can tune the DSP to perfection. What you've created is a Hiss monster because you forgot to pad the sensitivity of the tweeter. And I hope you didn't forget your PhD in mathematics so you can design and patent your own waveguide/horn so that your creation is actually listenable.

How many mistakes have you made and learned from over the years designing and building hundreds of loudspeakers?

This is what you are paying for.

If you think you can do a better job, more power to you, just don't forget to factor in the cost of your time.

There are other cheaper options for sure (I'm partial to the M2 which is about half the cost if you know how to shop around), but I welcome another competent contender in the marketplace.

My guess is that most people purchasing this speaker as a part of a larger home theater system are also getting a % off the msrp to help them feel like they got a good deal.

FWIW I just remembered another competitor with similar design goals and execution is PRO audio technology (Paul Hales company). Too many comparable models to list here.
I´m a bit surprised those speakers are being sold retail. I don´t think any DIY HT fan is going to choose these. I´m sure Tony can make these sing in the room he designed. But without involving Tony for room design, there are in my view much better solutions price/quality.
 

beagleman

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I think you're mistaking parts cost for the cost of time, engineering, modeling, testing, and retesting that it takes to build a competent loudspeaker.

As an example…Jbl M2- just a $550 tweeter and a $400 pro woofer. I'll even give you the benefit of the doubt that you're a miniDSP master samurai and can tune the DSP to perfection. What you've created is a Hiss monster because you forgot to pad the sensitivity of the tweeter. And I hope you didn't forget your PhD in mathematics so you can design and patent your own waveguide/horn so that your creation is actually listenable.

How many mistakes have you made and learned from over the years designing and building hundreds of loudspeakers?

This is what you are paying for.

If you think you can do a better job, more power to you, just don't forget to factor in the cost of your time.

There are other cheaper options for sure (I'm partial to the M2 which is about half the cost if you know how to shop around), but I welcome another competent contender in the marketplace.

My guess is that most people purchasing this speaker as a part of a larger home theater system are also getting a % off the msrp to help them feel like they got a good deal.

FWIW I just remembered another competitor with similar design goals and execution is PRO audio technology (Paul Hales company). Too many comparable models to list here.
Better job, meaning what exactly?
Sounding better, probably not.

Could I design a box with 2 pro woofers and a high frequency driver, that is fairly close to this?
Could I find plans online for a DIY version of something quite similar to this for FAR less money.?

A lot of the price is the COST of doing retail speakers.
All I am saying, is taking the one channel amp with DSP out of the equation for the moment, this is a Fairly simple relatively low cost box and drivers.
I do not expect most the get the DIY appeal or cost savings.

When one loves what they do, they do NOT factor in cost.

I renovate old tractors. I love doing it. I love to find parts, and refurbish them.

To do it as a business. Hell no, it would cost a fortune. I do it for fun.
I see Audio as fun and a Technical challenge. Maybe I am fooling myself. Maybe I am cheap??
 

beagleman

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How did you reckon that? The amplifier costs another $1,500. That brings up to $2000 in raw material cost. No way you can sell a finished speaker for $2,500 or even $3,000. You need 45% dealer margin. And you still have to build and test the speaker in US (they burn it in for extended hours). Maybe you don't get to $8,000 but not far from it.


Sorry, I was talking about the Speaker portion only.
My numbers were based on what the drivers would cost retail for you and I.

Buying in bulk or for production, usually the cost of raw parts is far less actually.

I get there is a lot of cost involved in labor and so on.
 

Bartl007

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Better job, meaning what exactly?
Sounding better, probably not.

Could I design a box with 2 pro woofers and a high frequency driver, that is fairly close to this?
Could I find plans online for a DIY version of something quite similar to this for FAR less money.?

A lot of the price is the COST of doing retail speakers.
All I am saying, is taking the one channel amp with DSP out of the equation for the moment, this is a Fairly simple relatively low cost box and drivers.
I do not expect most the get the DIY appeal or cost savings.

When one loves what they do, they do NOT factor in cost.

I renovate old tractors. I love doing it. I love to find parts, and refurbish them.

To do it as a business. Hell no, it would cost a fortune. I do it for fun.
I see Audio as fun and a Technical challenge. Maybe I am fooling myself. Maybe I am cheap??
To take the amp (3 in this case) and DSP out of the equation is to take the turkey and bacon off your club sandwich…it's no longer a club sandwich.:)

This is designed as a system and the package is greater than the sum of its parts.

Again, the market segment for high spl capable loudspeakers that actually sound good/measure well AND have remote rack mountable electronics/amp modules is small.

These are also the most capable speakers they make in their respective rixos line, there are smaller modules available for smaller rooms, surround channels etc. The alpha speaker that exceeds this models capability is mostly for cost no object type systems ($30k per).

I would imagine, most people requesting Mr. Grimani's expertise have at least $100k to spend on their dedicated listening/theater rooms (speakers/electronics/sound isolation/projector/acoustic treatments/dedicated HVAC/etc). I think they will get a much better end product than your run of the mill custom installer that wants to push big B&W diamond LCR and then "calibrate" the system by pushing the autocal button and call it good. For some insight into grimani's calibration regimen, there is good info here:

 
Last edited:

beagleman

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To take the amp (3 in this case) and DSP out of the equation is to take the turkey and bacon off your club sandwich…it's no longer a club sandwich.:)

This is designed as a system and the package is greater than the sum of its parts.

Again, the market segment for high spl capable loudspeakers that actually sound good/measure well AND have remote rack mountable electronics/amp modules is small.

These are also the most capable speakers they make in their respective rixos line, there are smaller modules available for smaller rooms, surround channels etc. The alpha speaker that exceeds this models capability is mostly for cost no object type systems ($30k per).

I would imagine, most people requesting Mr. Grimani's expertise have at least $100k to spend on their dedicated listening/theater rooms (speakers/electronics/sound isolation/projector/acoustic treatments/dedicated HVAC/etc). I think they will get a much better end product than your run of the mill custom installer that wants to push big B&W diamond LCR and then "calibrate" the system by pushing the autocal button and call it good. For some insight into grimani's calibration regimen, there is good info here:

I skimmed the video, and WILL agree some great information and yes you make some very valid points!

I was somewhat playing the Devil's Advocate with my earlier comments.

I guess my comments are based, NOT on bashing this set up or thinking it is not great, but more on, me being quite "Cheap" and always trying to save money, or find a way to do something cheaper.

I realize many just want a set up and to have someone do it, and write a check (Credit card etc). I fully GET what is good about this, but just find the price, a but pricey for what it is, even figuring in mark up, and the expertise that shows in the video...

Have you watched the entire video? Be honest please.
 

Bartl007

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I skimmed the video, and WILL agree some great information and yes you make some very valid points!

I was somewhat playing the Devil's Advocate with my earlier comments.

I guess my comments are based, NOT on bashing this set up or thinking it is not great, but more on, me being quite "Cheap" and always trying to save money, or find a way to do something cheaper.

I realize many just want a set up and to have someone do it, and write a check (Credit card etc). I fully GET what is good about this, but just find the price, a but pricey for what it is, even figuring in mark up, and the expertise that shows in the video...

Have you watched the entire video? Be honest please.
Yes, I have watched the video in it's entirety/more than once (I have no life!), and based my own calibration procedure on much of it's content. (I'm too cheap to buy an oscilloscope and the $65 test disc though)

I totally get it on being "cheap" and if there is anything I like more than audio/AV, it's getting a good deal. I'm all about finding a cheaper way to do things/save money.

Actually had a chance to hear the dynaudio "cinema master 60/CM60" speakers at cedia years ago which shares many of the same design goals as the other competitor speakers mentioned in this thread.

Turns out, if you don't require the hand holding of a custom installer, and can deal with the loss of 2 dB in max SPL capability (135>133) you can achieve the same level of capability (really a fantastic system) for about half the $125k MSRP of the system that was on demonstration. The dynaudio m3xe/m3ve studio monitor (just rebadged as CM60 by the marketing department) allows for an actively driven speaker using lap gruppen pro amps with Lake processing. They used JL audio subs for that demo, but subwoofers are an area where DIY can provide some very useful cost savings without sacrificing quality IMHO.
 

sarumbear

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I think you are over estimating what it costs to do this level of sound quality and sound level.

Just Cause the competitors to this are charging about the same, does not change the fact, that it is using 2 relatively common "Pro audio" woofers and a high output compression/horn/waveguide type high frequency driver.

Nothing "Screams" $8,200 to me.

I see 2-$200 Faitial pro woofers and possibly a $100.00 High frequency driver. That is about $500.00 in drivers.
Not to be a downer, but this looks more like a $2,500-$3,000 speaker to me.

Do you think that box and amp, even with DSP really costs $7,700??
You must study how market pricing works before commenting on prices. Otherwise you sound like sour grapes.
 

hmt

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Point is that there is much more than cost of materials. As amir and others already explained. Just take a Trinnov for example. The hardware costs a tiny fraction but that is not what you pay for.
 
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amirm

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Who can afford to set up a 7.2.2 home theater system with speakers this costly
Worldwide probably 10,000+. Our company has done a dozen or more.
 

Bartl007

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I´m a bit surprised those speakers are being sold retail. I don´t think any DIY HT fan is going to choose these. I´m sure Tony can make these sing in the room he designed. But without involving Tony for room design, there are in my view much better solutions price/quality.
To be honest I doubt there is much of a retail market for these direct to consumers. It would be a very rare and particular end user that would be capable of getting into the DSP software without mucking it all up. Most likely a brand that could be sold through custom installers and even then the market penetration I think would be small given the number of JBL synthesis and PRO audio technology dealers already in the marketplace.

I'm of the opinion that this speaker line is mostly an attempt by the owner to vertically integrate his design and installation services for high end theater rooms (it's my understanding he already has ownership of an acoustic treatments company). He can then specify his own products for acoustic treatment and loudspeaker systems and keep those services (and the profits they produce) in house.

I prefer more of an impartial design consultant with no financial conflicts of interest, but I'm a bit different than most.
 

squeedle

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This company sells to people who don't care about cost. Most of us reading this review are not the market. Grimani can't even be bothered to reply to emails from normal people. Not a fan despite his presence and apparent friendliness on sites like AH.
 
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amirm

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This is the theater we built as a demo in our last location: (construction picture)

Gallary Theater.jpg


It had a dual JB/Wisdom audio system. All of his was covered with fabric and LED lighting:

005K1649.JPG


Projector was close to $100K. The seats would go as far as $40K. :) Acoustic treatment alone was $25K and we built some of that to save cost! Computation fluid dynamics was used to optimize the location and number of subs:


So yes, the theaters that host these speakers are quite high-end and very expensive. It is for people who want the best and there are many of them.
 

Doodski

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That's a pretty serious room and installation. I would not know where to start with such a complex contract/job. Do you have draftspeople making mock ups and diagrams too?
 

Prana Ferox

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Also keep in mind these are permanent installs that (to the right buyer, as always) add to the resale value of the house, so to some degree think of it less as "I'm buying a cool stereo" and more "I am doing a value-add home improvement project." Like putting in an in-ground swimming pool.
 
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