To OB or not OB

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To OB or not OB
« on: 11 Feb 2023, 09:29 pm »
I have gone through so many box speakers that I won’t even make the list. I bought some Caintuck Audio Lii L-15 open baffle on a whim and they grew on me. I pulled them to the side several times and replace them with my Decware HR1 radials. While the bass returned, none of the other qualities of the open baffle were present. Since then I have augmented the F 15’s with a subwoofer dialed in, and the very low crossover point with very low game. The effect is very subtle, natural. I don’t think I could go back to box speakers again.


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Re: To OB or not OB
« Reply #1 on: 12 Feb 2023, 03:40 am »
Thankyou for inform us your valuable first hand experience with the Lii Audio F15. Really great value at $399 pair and still can be used with the BR enclosure mentioned on the Lii site.


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Re: To OB or not OB
« Reply #2 on: 12 Feb 2023, 02:12 pm »
There’s a lot of conversation here about OB v box speakers.  I don’t recall who made the comment but do remember their point being that OB bass may not have the impact of a comparable box speaker but over time they came to realize it sounded more natural. 
I’m still dialing in my system (including M4 Sapphire) but am finding it to be satisfying enough.  I’d like to swap in a pair of box speakers to compare but I’d be surprised if I find the difference to be as revelatory as some others.


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Re: To OB or not OB
« Reply #3 on: 12 Feb 2023, 02:38 pm »
I recently put in a second system and picked up a pair of used Tekton speakers. My main speakers are Spatial Audio M3TS. The comparison: The Tektons upper range is very fast and clear, and on the right recordings sound great. The bass on the Tektons are tight, but given the dual 8" woofers and dual 4" mids, lack the more full bodied sound of the M3's. The M3's soundstaging is excellent and I find myself wanting a bit more from the Tektons. The OB sound with 15" bass/mids also SOUND like a live electric guitar and overall I am enamored of the OB sound. There just seems to be more there, there, with open baffle.
The Tektons are also sensitive to speaker placement, but once dialed in, on the right recordings sound great. I think the M3's are more forgiving overall. Both are very well integrated full range speakers, but right now if I had to choose one, it would be the M3's, but that's a mater of taste, not ability.


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Re: To OB or not OB
« Reply #4 on: 12 Feb 2023, 03:21 pm »
I owned & lived with several different full-range electrostatics for >30 years and only recently discovered that they should be considered "open baffle", and therefore subject to all the caveats that are now well known and frequently discussed. Before that I had many different box speakers and Altec A7 horns, which sounded great for the rock that I listened to at that time, but sometimes only >50' away & outside the house!  OB quality & attributes are striking at first I found, but the shortcomings seep in and nag you until you get them set up right - then MAGIC happens! My Spatial M3 Turbos pretty much blow away any of the electrostatics I had as far as imaging specificity, stability and 3D size are concerned, and they need a subwoofer for the bottom octave just as much as the electrostatics did. However, the bass quality (on both types) is to my ear at least, is far more realistic than any box speaker I have ever heard. Realistic, true to life sound is my metric, not everyone else's, but that's OK with me. I find myself listening to my homemade OB F15s more and more and liking them as much and occasionally more than the Spatial M3t's which is both gratifying and a very big surprise. I can't imagine ever going back to box speakers of any sort - they are, more than anything else, way too colored for my taste.