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Kodiak, Mojo, TrevorM
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Original Post (Thread Starter)
Blind testing between active and non LFR1100?? #435453 01/24/2020 8:55 PM
by Slava_Ukraini
Slava_Ukraini
Well, lets be honest.. you don't even need to use a screen as both speakers effectively look identical.

So I am wondering .. Craig, you have both active and not active LFR1100. have you tried doing a test between the two to see if they are really night and day better as Mojo seems to want to poetically paint?

I am sort of wondering if trading in and trading up is justifiable for the $4000+ in cost.
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Re: Blind testing between active and non LFR1100?? #435507 Jan 27th a 09:25 AM
by Ian
Ian
It would be an interesting blind test to do between Active and Passive as the only difference. We have a switcher that allows us to switch between two different crossovers to the same speaker and we have a switcher that allows us to switch between different DSP codes to the same speaker. With some modifications to our switchers we should be able to do both simultaneously.

What we do know is that the difference between an LFR1100 Passive and an LFR1100 Active is not only about Passive versus Active. When designing the LFR1100 Active I wrote DSP code that replicates the passive LFR1100 Family of Curves in an Active speaker. I did this so we could do blind testing between the Passive and Active Family of Curves. So we do know that putting very linear Listening Window and Sound Power curves on top of each other wins the blind test.
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Re: Blind testing between active and non LFR1100?? #435565 Jan 31st a 09:45 AM
by Ian
Ian
I see the M2 graph is still just showing the basic on-axis response so we will need to update that to show the Listening Window and Sound Power. What we hear in a room is a combination of the Listening Window and the Sound Power so just showing an on-axis response or the responses out to 45 or 60 degrees off-axis is not enough information. The big change that happened with the introduction of v4 was the concentration on getting the Sound Power curves, as well as the Listening Window curves, to have a nice linear response. The Listening Window should be linear across the frequency band and the Sound Power should be linear but tilting down so it is about 10 dB down at 10k Hz. In an omnidirectional speaker that downward tilt in the Sound Power comes up due to energy being radiated in all directions. In order for the omnidirectional speaker to not sound overly bright due to this extra energy in the Sound Power it is necessary to tilt the Listening Window downwards to compensate. In the LFR1100 Active the Listening Window and Sound Power curves are the same curve and hence the downward tilt of 5 dB to 10k Hz. The bringing together of the Listening Window and Sound Power yielded some amazing results in the blind testing. There is no question we are on to something here.
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Re: Blind testing between active and non LFR1100?? #443398 Sep 2nd a 12:03 AM
by rrlev
rrlev
Or perhaps I set them up correctly smile
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Re: Blind testing between active and non LFR1100?? #444368 Jan 9th a 04:15 AM
by rrlev
rrlev
MatMan, you can give us a non scientific opinion especially if you take critical notes on various recording with the passives before you send them in.

On what is better I trust Ian … although I’m a bit surprise that this test was not tried yet.
I can say that I’m totally pleased with with my actives. Or should I say the actives driven with 2 ADA1500-5 as I can not separate them.

The Active/ADA1500 is the best system I’ve ever owned. Of this I’m certain.
It maybe the best system I’ve ever heard … but from memory I can’t be certain.
I can only comment that I’m blown away with its clarity, image, and dynamics and can not remember another system which impressed me to this level.

If someone does compare them … they need to use similar amps in the setup as
I can not say how much of my impression is the actives and how much the ADA1500. I can only guess.
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Re: Blind testing between active and non LFR1100?? #443281 Aug 20th a 06:50 PM
by Canesfan27
Canesfan27
How big of a difference would the active 1100s be over the 100s?
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Re: Blind testing between active and non LFR1100?? #443426 Sep 4th a 02:56 AM
by Mojo
Mojo
Originally Posted by MatManhasgone
I have not ripped open any of my speakers to take a deeper look at the internet structure of the speaker to do a side by side comparison, but I would dare to say that the internals of the LFR1100 and the M100 would be pretty close in the major structures inside

The LFR by my experience takes the sound quality of the M100 and smooths out any of the edges and then wraps the sound around you so as Ian has said to me many times, opens up the sweet spot for the best listening position and makes it more the whole room.

Mojo. when you listen to your M2 or M5, do you find that the sound envelope (transparent feeling) is more focused to a small sweet spot that if you sit in the right spot you can almost feel the speakers disappear? Move 3-4 feet to the left or right and the effect collapse. Move forward or backwards and you feel as if the speaker comes back into view as to what you are hearing.

I don't own a pair of actives. I cannot say if they are for my level of hearing will do a far better job that the passive set i have now. I have no doubt that they will be better, but by how much I cannot say.

Response to each paragraph selected from your post:

My active 1100 is better braced and contains more stuffing than my M100.

Images are appropriately large, realistically focused and diffuse with an enormous soundstage. Centre speaker during movies and music is detrimental for MLP and one to two seats on either side. The centre image, as all others, is incredibly realistic.

The M2, M3, M5 all disappear and even when I move around, although there is some channel collapse, the disappearance remains. However, the centre image falls apart quite easily. I've found they disappear best when the tweeter is 6" below ear level. There is no loss of fidelity with that set-up.

The actives ought to disappear better than your passives and render a more expansive soundstage with improved image focus and fidelity across the entire band. The bass will be more accurate. The bass is truly something to behold.
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Re: Blind testing between active and non LFR1100?? #443412 Sep 3rd a 12:31 PM
by Canesfan27
Canesfan27
I was able to get the m100s to disappear but I have a feeling once the room is built out with drywall they are going to appear again. I feel like I would still gain quite a bit going to the LFRs and driving them with the 1500 should produce clean sound. Hopefully the black friday sale comes back next month and I can go ahead and get them ordered. With the 30 day trial I can set them up side by side with the 100s and see how much improvement there is.
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Re: Blind testing between active and non LFR1100?? #443293 Aug 22nd a 02:53 AM
by Mojo
Mojo
This is what Andrew had to say about the passive LFR line.

"OK, I've finally been asked to spill some of the beans regarding this new, as-yet-unnamed, model. By now we have received a number of questions, all of which are in a similar vein:

I've seen these before, aren't they just a bipolar speaker?
Why have drivers on the back of a speaker where I can't hear them?
Why do you need 4 amplifier channels and a DSP anyway?
What are you guys up in Dwight smoking, and where can I get some? wink

First a little background:
Many people do not realize that the sound we hear from a speaker in a room is comprised of direct and reflected signals that come from all surfaces of the speaker, except for the bottom if they are floor-standers sitting directly on the floor. smile It's an amazing sight to measure a conventional speaker in an anechoic chamber with the BACK of the cabinet pointed at the microphone and witness that there is quite a bit going on back there. The bulk of the sound does come from the front and sides of a typical speaker, but as we move higher and higher in frequency, more of that information disappears as we move around the cabinet. Low frequencies don't behave the same way as they are omnidirectional by nature. This gives us something of a discontinuity in that at higher and higher frequencies we are radiating less and less acoustic energy, or power, into the room. So why do we care? Well, simply because this issue of "most of the energy up front" tends to compress the natural sense of acoustic and depth perspective of instruments, singers, and the space they were recorded.

The idea of biploar, which as many of you know I am VERY familiar with, was to duplicate the signal coming from the front of the speaker at the back of the speaker. This signal would be in phase with the front (push-push), unlike a dipole which would be out of phase at the back (push-pull). Theoretically, you would now have an ideal radiation pattern all around the cabinet, with no reduction in mid and high frequencies. Unfortunately, there are significant issues that come with the benefits. One is that by introducing this extra energy into the room, you end up skewing the total balance. It's becomes tipped up at the top end. You also end up with some serious cancellations between the front and rear drivers which tend to wash out images and give you 10 foot wide vocalists! And because you are driving this bipolar speaker with a single amplifier, you have limited control on how different the front and back signals can be. In many cases the level of the rear section is simply reduced to try and combat these issues. We have a speaker that has a natural sense of space and depth, but with tonal and imaging issues. Great...

The solution? Come up with a way to give the speaker a perfect power response, get rid of the cancellation, and make sure the tonal balance is perfect. Easy, right? Yes, it does sound easy, but practically it's difficult to implement. You need to drive the front and back sections differently and independently. That's why we need an extra stereo amplifier for this speaker. We also need to have far more control over the acoustic response of both sections of the speaker, something impossible with conventional crossover networks on their own. 4-channel DSP to the rescue!

If you do this right, and, believe me, that takes a mountain of R&D, you can have your cake and eat it to. Exactly what we are doing and, more importantly why, will remain a secret. What we have been able to achieve is what we believe to be the first "omnidirectional" speaker, which we've codenamed LFR (Linear Field Radiator), that does not trade off neutral tonal balance and imaging precision for an artificially big sense of space. If you have listened to bipolar speakers before and haven't liked them, you need to listen to these! smile"
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Re: Blind testing between active and non LFR1100?? #443423 Sep 4th a 12:45 AM
by Slava_Ukraini
Slava_Ukraini
The M100 is an incredible speaker in the range of sounds that it can produce. This is a testament to the work that Ian and Andrew are doing.

My comment is that I would guess that the LFR1100 was in extension of the M100, sort of like the LFR880 is based off the M80 speaker set. I have not ripped open any of my speakers to take a deeper look at the internet structure of the speaker to do a side by side comparison, but I would dare to say that the internals of the LFR1100 and the M100 would be pretty close in the major structures inside

The LFR by my experience takes the sound quality of the M100 and smooths out any of the edges and then wraps the sound around you so as Ian has said to me many times, opens up the sweet spot for the best listening position and makes it more the whole room.

Mojo. when you listen to your M2 or M5, do you find that the sound envelope (transparent feeling) is more focused to a small sweet spot that if you sit in the right spot you can almost feel the speakers disappear? Move 3-4 feet to the left or right and the effect collapse. Move forward or backwards and you feel as if the speaker comes back into view as to what you are hearing.

The beauty of the LFR is that there is a controlled "echo" or reflection that with the DSP just opens up the listening area so that what you hear feels more all around you and you're not required to sit in the perfect sweet spot to get the best sound. The beauty is that you get what I feel is a better effect than 5.1 recorded music in your source only needs to be stereo and the timing of sound is not as fussy as trying to perfectly tune in a multi speaker setup.


Now to the OP question. I don't own a pair of actives. I cannot say if they are for my level of hearing will do a far better job that the passive set i have now. I have no doubt that they will be better, but by how much I cannot say. For me, the M80 speakers were an incredible improvement over the Energy speakers that I had. They had a night and day improvement over the dynamic range and gave me detail in recordings that I honestly didn't know was even there. The move to LFR didn't really improve the sound.. well maybe a bit, but what it did do is improve the listening area and enjoyment that I could get from the speakers. How do you put a percentage improvement of sound quality to enjoyment? I don't know. I'd say that the M80 were the 96% perfect sound, where the LFR1100 get me to the 99%. I would guess the Actives will push that up to the 99.9%. If i didn't own the passive set then I would have to think hard if the extra cost is worth nirvana. I would be seriously tempted.

Sadly, I have yet to wear Ian down enough to give me the deal Id need to trade in my current set and move up to Active. But who knows what the future will hold.
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Re: Blind testing between active and non LFR1100?? #444365 Jan 9th a 01:29 AM
by Slava_Ukraini
Slava_Ukraini
it has been a while since i have last been on the forum. Ian has done a good number on me. A number that i simply couldn't pass up to move from Analogue Passive to Full bore DSP digital full active LFR1100's

I know that i did say that it would take hell or high water to get me to move, but it seems that looking outside the window at what is going on with pandemics, that hell looks like it's come and there definitely seems to be a flood of who knows what. So better take the plunge into the deep end with the other big boys and get some Active speakers.

as I am trading in my current LFR1100 for the newer Active, i am not going to be able to answer my original question of doing a blind A/B side by side test to see if I can tell the different between the two.
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