What is it about classic hi-fi that excites us? Why after 50yrs of innovation are we still in love with loudspeakers from the 60s & 70s? Well why not, right? Vinyl records have returned as the cornerstone of serious music collections. So, why would big box chassis and wide speaker baffles be any different?
There’s no denying that Linton looks cool. So, there’s that. But talk to Linton Heritage designer Peter Comeau and he’ll tell you that it’s ‘simply good engineering practice.’ Big box speakers avoid the pitfalls of baffle step, provide more space for larger speaker drivers, and the increased cabinet volume improves bass response.
It’s win win win.
What’s baffle step? Well, slimmer speakers inherently produce an uneven frequency response, creating a step in volume (dB) between low and high frequencies. This produces louder HF than LF, which results in an audible thinning of vocalists and stringed instruments. The less real estate around the speaker driver the greater that step. And while modern crossover designs do work to mitigate the damage, as a consequence they also decrease speaker sensitivity and increase colouration. Not great.
Wider baffles, on the other hand, combined with larger mid/bass drivers, ameliorate the damage caused by baffle step. How large? Well, in the case of Linton, its mid and bass drivers are 135 & 200mm respectively. That’s big. And rather than stretched to the edge of the speaker baffle, like modern, slimmer designs, Linton offers a ton of baffle realestate around its drivers.
When you combine all these design elements, you get a big, open, full-bodied sound. Like real open. Linton is renowned for its brilliant sense of scale and space. So not only does it throw a very wide, very deep soundstage, it creates a lot of space around each instrument within that soundstage, offering a more immersive listening experience.
So in the end, yeah, Linton looks badass. But it also sounds unbelievably big. And that kind of design never gets old.
Click HERE to learn more about Wharfedale Linton Heritage.