Bass is always a problem in the audiophile world. And this is why I have written this Audiophile bass Tannoy Edinburgh article. This is a true story, and all part of the learning curve! I know from experience how hard getting the correct amount of bass. And, the correct sound from the Tannoy Edinburgh. There is either too little bass or not quite enough bass. And a problem to get it just right.
I am a huge Tannoy Fan and have been most of my life. Having said that, I did try a pair of Focal ‘Divers’ for a year, but switched back to Tannoy. During my life, I have owned many different models of Tannoy loudspeakers because they are simply the best!
My first was a pair of Berkeley’s from 1970, but then stepped up to Arden’s. After that came a pair of SRMx15 and I replaced the drivers with 3818. Next, was a pair of Turnberrys. After which, came a pair of Glenair’s. I moved up to a pair of GRf’s. But, decided to settle down with a pair of Edinburgh’s
For your interest, I do prefer the sound of the older Tannoy. As opposed to the sound of the KIngdom royals for example. Why is this, you may ask? but, hard to explain as I think a lot has to to do with age!
The picture at the top of the page, is the Edinburgh’s that I am writing this ‘Audiophile bass Edinburgh’ article about. They were purchased from a colleague in the UK but when setting up, I was not happy with the sound.
Many of my friends have other models from Tannoy, which all have their own sound. But most of my friend’s sounded much better these Edinburgh’s. And so I had to do something.
This is the Tannoy 3149 12″ driver fitted to the Edinburgh enclosures. The driver came with its own Tannoy crossover and I felt this was indeed the problem. Tannoy supplied a crossover which was first order HF and first order LF. The crossover was set at 1200 Hz. The frequency response of the driver was 28 Hz to 25Khz with a sensitivity of 94db.
My plan was to find three different crossovers and compare them with the original Tannoy crossover and see if I could improve my sound in any way.
Crossovers Number 0ne
The first crossover I found (which seemed to fit the bill) was from a gentleman who lived in Romania. I found this on eBay UK and exchanged a dozen emails with the owner. We got on very well and went ahead with the purchase which arrived a week later.
The crossovers were hand-built using excellent components and crossed over at about 1K. I was very pleased with my purchase and excited to hear the results. I could hardly wait to turn on my amp. Unfortunately, the crossover did not make much of a difference to my sound and did not do what I have expected. I wanted more bass but it was still lacking and so the search for a better crossover continued.
Crossover number Two
I bought this crossover from a Tannoy expert in London. It came from a friend of a friend and was made for me. This was a very simple crossover and components used were the best of the best. Even the cables were pure silver and made to a certain length. At this time, I was using these crossovers for a pair of Tannoy 3811 filled into GRF cabinets.
The components used were Clarity Caps and Mundorf Inductors that crossed over at 1.2Khz. This crossover had been designed to work with the Tannoy 3811 (which are 15″) but I thought I would them with the Edinburgh’s.
The quality of the sound was now completely in a different league. Absolutely crystal clear sound and far better than the Tannoy crossover that came with the Edinburgh’s. But unfortunately, the bass was still lacking. The bass was not lacking by much but I still wanted more, especially in the lower regions. I wanted to sit and feel the bass running up from the floor through my legs and into the pit of my stomach!
Crossover number Three
I was determined to get the bass to sound the way I wanted and so my search continued. Searching again on eBay UK I was able to find a well know and respected Audiophile who operates under the name “Mainly Tannoy”. This is a company who has been in business many years and have great experience in sourcing components. Mark supplies professional Tannoy crossovers and components as well as his own custom crossovers.
This is the crossover I received and was from the Tannoy professional series. The sound was very good indeed but unfortunately did not have the intense clarity of the number two crossover. (my custom made crossover)
I decided to ‘take the bull by the horns’ as they say. Out of storage came my old soldering iron as I decided to make a few of my own mods to this crossover. The iron warmed up and with Iron in hand away, I went to do the business! I removed a few of the components and installed the crossover into the enclosures.
I used very high-grade cables to connect the drivers to the crossover which were silver soldered directly to the drivers. The other ends were soldered directly to the crossovers. Now the moment of truth, to test the setup. Firstly to see if my mods worked and secondly to see how good the sound would be.
Audiophile bass Tannoy Edinburgh
The modifications were performed in my friends listening room. My friend is a doctor and has a pair of Tannoy Autographs fitted with 15″ monitor Golds. These are a simply amazing sounding pair of Tannoy’s and a joy to listen to.
As you can see the Edinburgh’s look rather humble next to the Autographs but it was the sound that we wanted to hear.
There is an old saying “Third time lucky” and this certainly was the case. We had everything set and we’re playing our favorite test track through the Autographs. It was now time to hear what the Edinburgh’s sounded like with their new modified crossovers.
I connected the cables and the music played. It only took a few bars but we were both in 100% agreement. The Edinburgh’s sounded absolutely fantastic. They had the clarity in the upper regions plus the middle tones and the wonderful bass.
OMG, what an amazing sounding bass it was. Everything you could imagine was there and the sound was so close to the Autographs it was a shock for both of us. This was the best sound that I had every heard from my Edinburgh’s and it gave me such a pleasure that I was able to make it happen.
Conclusion Audiophile bass Tannoy Edinburgh
If ever, anybody says to me ‘Edinburgh’s are no good because they have no Bass’ I will stand up and tell my story.
The question is this – why did the Edinburgh sound not so good with the factory crossover fitted to them? And why did I have to go through all this is get the sound I wanted?
As another old saying goes ‘where there is a will there is a way’ And I certainly have the will to get the best sound I can with what I have got – read more
Interesting information about many of the older Tannoy loudspeakers and crossovers.
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