Hi, Omega aficionados,
Well, I thought I would report on my ongoing speaker choice journey.
I know that some of the folks on this forum have objected in the past to comparisons between the Tekton line and the Omega line as being "apples versus oranges." Given that I have not had the opportunity to audition Omega's in person, I will assume that Tekton and Omega are very, very different, as other posters have suggested. Yet, it is natural to compare them because they are both moderately priced, very efficient loudspeakers that anyone who is looking for a match with a low-power tube amp is likely to consider.
By the way, before you protest that this is an Omega forum and that discussion of Tekton is inappropriate, I'm still considering Omega – see below.
I came upon someone in my locale who is selling a pair of Tekton Lore Reference towers and who was gracious enough to lend me the pair for a few days. These are relatively small towers, about 36 inches high and 10 inches wide. These do not use the 10 inch, Eminence "guitar driver," but a proprietary, 8 inch unit that seems to be made of treated paper with a treated, pleated cloth surround. It is paired with a small, SEAS, soft dome tweeter with a large surround.
Remember that I am comparing this to my current speakers, the Reference 3A De Capo monitors, a classic and very highly respected design.
The Lore Reference retails for $799 in stock form, is 96 dB efficient and is rated down to 37 Hz.
To my great surprise, I would say that in most respects it is the equal of the De Capo and that in some respects it is its superior.
With just a slight bit of toe in, the Lore Reference throws a much larger and more immersive sound stage than the De Capo, far more immersive and holographic. I also think that it does a better job of nailing instrumental tonality – saxophones, for example, had a realism that the that De Capo does not seem to muster and strings sound beautiful. The Reference also does a far more convincing job with orchestral music.
The presentation is quite different than the De Capo. The De Capo tends to give a window into the performance from between the speakers, occasionally extending beyond the perimeter of the speaker cabinets. The Lore Reference generates a tall, wide sound field that seems to splash the performance over the front wall behind the speakers. I have not messed very much with speaker placement. I would be curious to see how soundstage depth changes with some more distance from the back wall, but I have been unable to move my De Capo's which are attached with blue tack to extremely heavy, sand-filled welded speaker stands. Ideally, I would probably want to move them further apart and a bit further out from the back wall.
Three other points.
First, the De Capo is rated down to 42 Hz and the Lore Reference, as I have mentioned, down to 37 Hz. I don't know what actual in room response I am getting, but I will say that the 5 Hz makes a difference. Having a speaker that nudges closer to the bottom octave really fill things out, and the bass from the Lore Reference is very well controlled and not mushy or "one-note."
Second, I would guess that the Lore Reference exhibits imaging which is not quite as specific as the De Capo. I would describe it as different rather than inferior.
Third, there is definitely something to be said for pairing a 300 B SET amplifier with a much more efficient speaker. I'm guessing that's a lot of what I have been hearing – music flows more easily and I'm guessing it's partly because the amp has more breathing room.
Okay, as for Omega:
I think that, realistically, in terms of finances, if I am going to take a chance with a trial on an Omega Speaker, it is going to be the 7 XRS Tower. I am basing this on several considerations.
First, I would be funding this purchase based upon the sale of my current gear, and I am guessing that I will fall short of the Alnico Monitors.
Second, the 7 XRS is slightly more efficient and digs slightly deeper than the Alnico Monitor, which I think might suit my circumstances better.
Finally, I am increasingly liking the idea of the simplicity of a tower speaker that does not require a separate stand, and if I can sell my stands, it will get me a little closer to a better speaker.
If you have read this far, thank you.
I am very interested in your reactions and comments.
Again, let me emphasize that my discussion of the Tekton Lore Reference is not intended to be trolling or anything of the sort! That's not who I am. I am just gathering information and this seems to be the best place to do it.