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Polk T50 Review (Floor Standing Speaker)

MediumRare

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Preference Rating
SCORE: 3.7
SCORE w/ sub: 5.7

Sensitivity: 86.3dB (300Hz-3kHz ; spec: 90dB)
Frequency response: +/- 7.9dB 38Hz-20kHz ; +/-3.9dB 80Hz-20kHz
If I’m not mistaken, these are now the lowest scoring (w/sub) passive main speakers to receive a Recommendation.

There must now be enough data in the set of DUTs to look for the missing independent variable that explains why.
 

temps

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It performs quite well for its price!
I'd go as far to say, extremely well for its price... maybe the best performance-per-dollar speaker ASR has tested so far.
 

MZKM

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If I’m not mistaken, these are now the lowest scoring (w/sub) passive main speakers to receive a Recommendation.

There must now be enough data in the set of DUTs to look for the missing independent variable that explains why.
Well, they are $300/pair towers, that’s likely a large factor.
 

MediumRare

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Well, they are $300/pair towers, that’s likely a large factor.
They are, but surely you're not saying Amir is easily swayed by a cheap date? ;)

The subjective evaluation was pretty favorable, so the fundamental question is, "Why would a speaker that scores 3.7 actually sound good, even before EQ?"

Amir already gives us at least a hint of the answer: "able to handle tons of power and gets quite loud and dynamic with little evidence of stress".

So perhaps the score can be enhanced with something along those lines? It would certainly be interesting to see if the R-sqr can be improved with that info.
 

ROOSKIE

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To much emphasis on the Harman score.
I have owned and tried many speakers now that have a Harman score here.
It is interesting and adds some fun, however that score is just not a complete picture.
 
OP
amirm

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The question is: would they sound the same in a properly vacuumed room? And, well, we can only imagine what the garage with the Klippel looks like.
The dust acts like a high frequency absorber. Due to small particles, it is likely effective above 50 kHz. So it won't do you all any good but for me, with my ultra-sensitive hearing, it is super effecting in taming digital signals to make them sound more analog.....
 
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amirm

amirm

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Amir already gives us at least a hint of the answer: "able to handle tons of power and gets quite loud and dynamic with little evidence of stress".

So perhaps the score can be enhanced with something along those lines?
All the research into speakers were tone at constant playback level that didn't stress any speakers. So this factor is non-existent in there. I run distortion test but correlating them to listening results is difficult and certainly not ready to be scored. I wish we could get there but we are not.

You may have noticed that the last center speaker I tested with dual woofers also got favorable outcome from me. That too could play with ease without limits. Likewise, I have scored down even marvelous measuring speakers like Genelec due to inability to play loud.

The best technology is one where you don't have to learn its limits and work around it. Such is the ability to play as loud as you want.
 

peanuts

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no way i would buy a speaker with two passive woofers.
pioneer SP-FS52 trumps this.

 

Miker 1102

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no way i would buy a speaker with two passive woofers.
pioneer SP-FS52 trumps this.

I have these and have compared them and the tweeter on the Andrew Jones is just harsh to me on the higher frequencies. They are good speakers, tho
 

Miker 1102

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Dennis Murphy has stated those towers measure/sound worse than the bookshelf version that was reviewed here (and he did his AAM mod, also reviewed here).
I agree. I don't think these towers sound as good as the Polk t50s. On axis, the stereo imaging is more accurate to me. I own both.
 

Dennis Murphy

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I agree. I don't think these towers sound as good as the Polk t50s. On axis, the stereo imaging is more accurate to me. I own both.
The 52's were certainly my least favorite of the Pioneer series. The tweeter was a wild ride--huge peak in the highs and the worst example of the foggy lower treble coloration that plagued the monitor and center channel. But I've never heard the Polk's, so I have no idea which one I would prefer. . What puzzles me a little is the source of the fairly high Q peak at 1 kHz. That's usually a woofer cone-surround resonance issue, compounded by lack of adequate baffle step compensation. But I'm not seeing an issue in the nearfield woofer measurement. The passives aren't behaving very well in that region, but it's hard to see why the combined woofer-passive response would have a narrow peak like that. Anyhow, my living room is littered with tiny towers with flimsy cabinets and complex crossover mods...... Must not buy a pair of Polk's---Must not buy.............
 

Miker 1102

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The tweeters were my issue with the 52s as well. I don't hear major peaks or dips in the Polks on axis at all.. I have just started my tinkering journey with speakers because our local repair guy screwed up the ones I liked (I am now learning how to soder) so I can relate to the many speakers. Such a fascinating hobby. I really should have discovered it sooner. It' s less expensive than my previous hobby.
 

valerianf

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My guessing is that the 1 khz peak is the result of the "radiator messiness" coupled with the driver response curve bump.
 

anphex

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While I am grateful, no matter how I look at the speaker reviews, without impulse response they feel kind of incomplete. I believe you can make about any speaker achieve flat linearity in white/pink noise, but knowing how fell a membrane follows the signal and how long it takes to start moving and stop moving is crucial.

Can we crowdfund such a measuring device for Amir?
https://www.klippel.de/products/rd-system/analyzer-hardware/ka3-klippel-analyzer-3.html
About 6.170 EUR ( 6500 $ ~). Anyone in :)?

The distortion, linearity and directivity graphs are awesome though, very useful.
 
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