Well, I wrote
this page (the bottom part) over 7 years ago. What I said below is just as
valid today, nothing has changed. After 7 years I think I’d best remind people
reading this page and those of you who have been following The Horn Shoppe
why things are as they are.
For some back ground….the Horns were not the start
of a journey for me. They were the end. I had been on a 10 year or so quest
to have the sound of the many single driver speakers I’d
built and the ability to play very loud. This is very difficult
to pull of in a small pkg. I was not and had no intentions at the time to
ever sell a speaker. I’d been building them for 25 years, mostly TL’s, and
sealed. I never cared for most other types, horns included, but that’s another
story. This is not about design it’s about “explaining things”.
As soon as
Mac and I heard the first one I knew I had done exactly what
I’d been searching for. No need to explain it but just accept I was happy
and had achieved a 10 year goal. I’m not writing a history of the Horns here
so try and think “concepts”. From day one I experimented to tweak them to
be as good as I thought they could be. I changed drivers to the 108 and was
among the first in the US to get them. I was forced to use the108 E when
the original 108 was discontinued. I switched from the 108E to the 126E and
made the decision 10 seconds after I heard the first one. I had been unaware
of its existence. I liked it MUCH better than
the 108E, regardless of the fact it cost 1/3 the 108E
Now, in 7
years many may wonder why I have not come up with anything else or “better”.
Well the M2 is “better” in that they are more efficient and are still practically
sized. They sound like the Horns. The Hornline is a good augmenter and the
Cube is a fraction of the size with almost identical sound and integration.
Both augmenters deal with the bottom end only.
on the other hand are EXACTLY what I want them to be. I am
always on the lookout for tweaks but the thing is there is nothing in the response or design that I feel needs
addressing. While some are modifying this and that and treating
cones and using all the other tricks, I feel that the 126 E in my speaker is just fine as it is. I damp the
basket and that is all I feel the need to do. I am not saying that modifying
the driver is “wrong”, I’m saying for me, in my application
I don’t see the need. I am no stranger
to modifying drivers and many of you have the proof but I believe it should
be done on an application by application basis. There is no free lunch and
changing one thing affects others.
This is why
the Horns do not or will not change significantly ….its also why I don’t
constantly look for “new and improved” drivers made from exotic and un-exotic
materials. All I care about is the sound.
Sure I could change them any way I want…….more bass? no problem, but you’ll
have to do with less output. Want them “smoother”? No problem but then they
will not be as dynamic. There is no free lunch. I am happy with them exactly
how they are. and since they meet all of my goals, exactly how am I going
to justify 6 different models with 6 different type and size cones? If I
had that I’d like to think that one was the best
all around compromise and
that’s what every speaker is, a collection of compromises. I don’t believe
in different speakers for different “types of music” or amplifiers. A good
speaker should sound good on any good amp with any type music. But that’s
another whole page of explaining!
For me, I
am completely happy….they have been a success and they always will be. In
the last 7 years they have evolved and gotten steadily better sounding. Where
they are now is once again, the end. At this point they probably can’t “get
better”. There simply can’t be a “better” driver because you see….they are
exactly what I had in mind 7 years ago (today
is June ’07).
And every single pair can be “upgraded” to exactly what is going out the
door today. <>
I’ve got other ideas but they are not new but they were good decades ago
and they would be today, it’s just that there is little incentive for me
to pursue them. I could make pretty much anything I want, of any complexity.
There’s just no need. There are plenty of other people building stuff like
that. I’m good to go.
Unless our ears suddenly evolve or a major breakthrough in technology occurs
what sounded good decades ago will still sound good decades from now. Fancy
drivers made of new or old materials all do the same thing and there is no
guarantee that an exotic driver will sound better than a decades old paper
cone one. It might, but it might not. And for that matter who decides what
is good or not. We all know the answer to that one I hope. <>
So if anyone is thinking the Horn Shoppe is “stagnant” or not “in touch”
well, think again. It’s just that I am completely
satisfied with the Horns from a practical standpoint and their level of performance
is as good as the design will allow…well, except I still am not great at
What I said then...and still say today.....
Why Single Drivers.....a couple reasons.....