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2Pi Towers First Listen [message #75593] Thu, 21 February 2013 22:46 Go to next message
Bill Epstein is currently offline  Bill Epstein
Messages: 1088
Registered: May 2009
Location: Smoky Mts. USA
Illuminati (2nd Degree)

Living Room is looking a lot like Stonehenge!

index.php?t=getfile&id=1047&private=0


After a 4 hour wiring session this morning I shlepped these monsters downstairs and hooked'm up to my 6 watt 6550 single-ended.

index.php?t=getfile&id=1048&private=0


I've wanted to build a pair ever since discovering the SB Acoustics SB-29 tweeter a few years ago. I had made Towers with the Vifa Tweeter for Speakerman and used that tweeter in a pair of sealed "bookshelf" speakers and had never warmed to it. I hoped the SB-29, which I used previously in another project, would improve the clarity of the 2Pi mids and treble.

My reasoning behind the modest expense of the upgrade is simple: Wayne's cabinet and crossover makes the humble Alpha 10 sound at least as good in the three octaves of bass as the $1200 apiece GPA?Altec 604.

I've only played 6 album sides but all the drivers had been previously used, albeit not for some time, so break-in shouldn't be an issue, and they sounded damn fine. Sophisticated, even. And really nearfield because of the forest of speakers in my little room.

As you can see in the pic, they back right up to my 4Pis so there has to be some passive woofing going on but when Bonnie Raitts bassist, on Takin' My Time, rolls (is that a glissando?) up to the next note on the string, you can hear the finger move on the neck like never before.

The Chesky re-issue of Scheherazade let's the imaging come through with distinct first and second violins as well as pinpoint position of the brass deep into the rear of the stage and definitely above the strings and woodwinds on their lower risers.

I think these are the perfect Condo-Dwellers speakers. The bass is "apparently" deeper than the 4Pis which eliminates the need for sub-woofers and Nightsticks knocking on the door. They're also nearly as sensitive, moreso than the driver specs would indicate. My volume control is maybe one click higher than with the 4s.

After a month into the project and a back-breaking morning, you'll forgive me for setting them up and writing about them prior to building the grills which are the reason for the recessed, flat black baffles you see here:

index.php?t=getfile&id=1049&private=0


One word describes the veneer: MEH! I could tell it wasn't going to be museum quality early on, far from it, so I kinda backed off from the full treatment I had planned. Still, classic varnish wet-rubbed with 400, and then 600 Wet N Dry and completed with 0000 steel wool done soapy wet came out well ahead of your typical speakers oiled or Goopethane finish.

Now that I know how well they perform, I'll take out the subwoofers and move the 4Pis to the sides and let the Towers have their own space. Then we'll really see what they can do.

Re: 2Pi Towers First Listen [message #75594 is a reply to message #75593] Fri, 22 February 2013 02:10 Go to previous messageGo to next message
skywave-rider is currently offline  skywave-rider
Messages: 104
Registered: May 2009
Viscount
Will look forward to that. IMHOP the veneer looks excellent and I love the design.
Re: 2Pi Towers First Listen [message #75595 is a reply to message #75593] Fri, 22 February 2013 07:44 Go to previous messageGo to next message
SteveBrown is currently offline  SteveBrown
Messages: 330
Registered: May 2009
Grand Master
They look great, Bill! Congratulations! What's under the veneer? MDF?
Re: 2Pi Towers First Listen [message #75598 is a reply to message #75595] Fri, 22 February 2013 10:16 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Wayne Parham is currently offline  Wayne Parham
Messages: 18649
Registered: January 2001
Illuminati (33rd Degree)

Man, Bill, I just love the look of those speakers. I wish I could drop by and have a listen. If they weren't so big, I'd ask you to bring 'em with you to LSAF (if you are coming). But that's a lot to ask.

Anyway, I'm diggin' those cabinets!

Re: 2Pi Towers First Listen [message #75599 is a reply to message #75598] Fri, 22 February 2013 10:55 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Bill Epstein is currently offline  Bill Epstein
Messages: 1088
Registered: May 2009
Location: Smoky Mts. USA
Illuminati (2nd Degree)
Wayne Parham wrote on Fri, 22 February 2013 11:16

Man, Bill, I just love the look of those speakers. I wish I could drop by and have a listen.




Wayne, for a change, HAS MAIL!

Wellll, actually it's a box on a Brown Truck.

You supply your cabinet and Alpha 10.

You've given to me for years, 'bout time I gave you something.
Re: 2Pi Towers First Listen [message #75600 is a reply to message #75599] Fri, 22 February 2013 11:08 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Wayne Parham is currently offline  Wayne Parham
Messages: 18649
Registered: January 2001
Illuminati (33rd Degree)

Bill, you're too kind. If it's what I think it is, I'll gladly swap out the tweeters in my two π towers and give 'em a listen. Smile

Re: 2Pi Towers First Listen [message #75603 is a reply to message #75600] Fri, 22 February 2013 12:56 Go to previous messageGo to next message
petew is currently offline  petew
Messages: 63
Registered: June 2011
Location: Albuquerque, NM USA
Viscount
Those 2pi towers look great.

Is there any difference in the crossover between the regular 2pi and the tower?

Where is the port located on the back of the tower (high, middle, low)?

The reason I ask about the port location, I'm considering towers for my four surrounds, concealed in tapering columns. I'd like to tilt the entire cabinet forward to to allow the port some breathing room through the sides of the columns.

I've got a big room and I like overkill!

Re: 2Pi Towers First Listen [message #75605 is a reply to message #75603] Fri, 22 February 2013 13:39 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Wayne Parham is currently offline  Wayne Parham
Messages: 18649
Registered: January 2001
Illuminati (33rd Degree)

The crossover is the same for the two π and two π tower speakers. The only difference between the two is response below 100Hz.

The port is large and low, on the rear panel. Specifically, it's 4.5" diameter, centered 7" up from the bottom of the cabinet. This position is very important, as is the location of the midwoofer on the front baffle. It was chosen specifically to minimize the influence of low-midrange internal standing waves on the response curve.
Re: 2Pi Towers First Listen [message #80690 is a reply to message #75593] Sat, 11 October 2014 03:17 Go to previous messageGo to next message
tubemax is currently offline  tubemax
Messages: 37
Registered: February 2012
Location: Netherlands
Baron
Hi Bill,

I've been looking at your version of 2-Pi towers and wonder if they would be good enough as a permanent speaker for long time use and possibly for all musical styles ( mostly rock, blues and jazz ) - instead of going to build much more expensive 3 or 4 Pi for which really I don't have the money ( even in the stock form ).

So... the question is...
Is there any chance for an in-depth review of your 2-Pi Towers since you are apparently the only one with upgraded SB-29 tweeters?

Regards,
Max
Re: 2Pi Towers First Listen [message #80944 is a reply to message #75593] Fri, 19 December 2014 09:51 Go to previous messageGo to previous message
themilford is currently offline  themilford
Messages: 66
Registered: May 2009
Viscount
I'm interested in an in-depth, comparative review as well... also, now that Wayne has a pair of SB-29, I wonder if they'll make the cut and we'll see an upgrade option for the little PIs soon.
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