AudioAficionado.org  

Go Back   AudioAficionado.org > Manufacturers Forums > TAD Speakers & Electronics

TAD Speakers & Electronics Technical Audio Devices Laboratories

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 03-24-2013, 06:28 PM
bart's Avatar
bart bart is offline
Life is beautiful


 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Belgium
Posts: 18,847
Default TAD show "de luxe", March 24, 2013 in Belgium

Today, we accepted the invitation of Frank Van Leuvenhaege, Brand Ambassador for Tad-Labs and Pioneer Europe, and went to a beautiful villa at the countryside where the 3 speakers and the electronics were being demonstrated.
The reception was warm and hearty, with a good cava, smoked salmon, and other seafood.
The room was quite big, 8m (W) x 18m (L) x 4m (H), not especially treated.
The gear was located at one side. Unfortunately against the light, this hindered taking pictures.
But my wife managed to capture the atmosphere.



We started with the Compact Reference, driven by the C2000 pre/DAC and the M2500 power (class-D!).
Source: MacBook Pro via USB directly in the C2000.







We started with some female singer-songwriter music.
What immediately struck was the clarity of the voice, and the depth in the soundstage.
Very tight bass also.
Really convincing.
This was confirmed as we went through other pieces.
Also big scale classical, like Mussorgsky's "Pictures at an Exhibition" came through very well.
The sweet spot was not limited to one seat, as I experienced walking through the room.



I think TAD masters Class-D amplification very well, and the DAC in the pre seems up to the task.



__________________
Stereo: Hegel H590, Grimm Audio MU1, Mola Mola Tambaqui, Burmester 948 - V3 & V6 racks, Vivid Audio G2 Giyas, REL Carbon Special (pair), Silent Angel Bonn N8 Ethernet Switch & Forester F1, Wireworld Platinum Eclipse IC and SE SC, Furutech Digiflux
AV: Hegel C-53, Marantz AV8802A, Oppo BDP-203EU, Pioneer Kuro 60", Vivid Audio C1 & V1w's, Wireworld Platinum Eclipse, SE & E
Second system (veranda): Halgorythme preamp and monoblocks, Burmester 061, Avalon Avatar, Sharkwire & Wireworld cables
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 03-24-2013, 06:44 PM
bart's Avatar
bart bart is offline
Life is beautiful


 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Belgium
Posts: 18,847
Default Next: TAD Evolution 1







Cables and power condition were from a French brand, unknown to me.
The speakers were driven by the same combination as the Compact Reference.

We listened to the same pieces, and also to "Tin Pan Alley" (Stevie Ray Vaughan).
You could clearly hear that the Evolution had a little more bass impact, and went a bit deeper, but the bass was not so tight, and the tweeter was tiring after a while.
This loudspeaker was clearly more "hi-fi", sounded less natural.
I think for rock lovers, it might even be the better one of the 2, because the 2 woofers obviously give it more slam.
But for acoustic music, jazz and classical, the Compact Reference is the better speaker.
__________________
Stereo: Hegel H590, Grimm Audio MU1, Mola Mola Tambaqui, Burmester 948 - V3 & V6 racks, Vivid Audio G2 Giyas, REL Carbon Special (pair), Silent Angel Bonn N8 Ethernet Switch & Forester F1, Wireworld Platinum Eclipse IC and SE SC, Furutech Digiflux
AV: Hegel C-53, Marantz AV8802A, Oppo BDP-203EU, Pioneer Kuro 60", Vivid Audio C1 & V1w's, Wireworld Platinum Eclipse, SE & E
Second system (veranda): Halgorythme preamp and monoblocks, Burmester 061, Avalon Avatar, Sharkwire & Wireworld cables
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 03-24-2013, 07:17 PM
bart's Avatar
bart bart is offline
Life is beautiful


 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Belgium
Posts: 18,847
Default TAD Reference One

Up to the big boys.
150 kg of gorgeously finished speaker.



Source: SACD player D600.
Pre: C600.
Power: 2 monoblocks M600.

You can see the rack is "vintage".









This ultra high end combination sounded of course excellent.
Even more low end grunt.
A little remark: it sounded at times a bit too heavy.
For example in choir music (The King's Singers), the voices sounded bigger than live, but this could have something to do with settings in the pre.
I walked around the room again, and I think the sweet spot was a little more narrow than with the Compact Reference.
Don't misunderstand me: the sound was top notch, also when you were 6-8 meters away from the speakers.
These Reference Ones need a lot of space to breathe, that's for sure.

Conclusion.
I think the Compact Reference is the best buy in the TAD range.
It gives you at least 85% of the performance of its big brother (same tweeter, developed in the house).
Only the lowest octave is missing.
The authority of the monoblocks is impressive; but the more modest "little" pre-power combo really delivers also.
I think the (SA)CD player is amongst the best, but I'd like to test it in my own system. I heard too little SACD's to really evaluate it.

A candidate for my system?
The electronics do appeal.
And the speakers... I could easily live with them. Absolutely.
But I missed something today. Something I do have at home: the sound really in the room, loose from the speakers.
And, as natural as the Reference series sound, my Vivids excel even more in this area.
And that was what my wife wispered to me during the demo: "This sounds good, but we do have better sound at home".
And that with a "modest" Burmester Classic Line integrated amp and CD-player...
__________________
Stereo: Hegel H590, Grimm Audio MU1, Mola Mola Tambaqui, Burmester 948 - V3 & V6 racks, Vivid Audio G2 Giyas, REL Carbon Special (pair), Silent Angel Bonn N8 Ethernet Switch & Forester F1, Wireworld Platinum Eclipse IC and SE SC, Furutech Digiflux
AV: Hegel C-53, Marantz AV8802A, Oppo BDP-203EU, Pioneer Kuro 60", Vivid Audio C1 & V1w's, Wireworld Platinum Eclipse, SE & E
Second system (veranda): Halgorythme preamp and monoblocks, Burmester 061, Avalon Avatar, Sharkwire & Wireworld cables

Last edited by bart; 09-29-2013 at 04:29 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 03-24-2013, 07:30 PM
Bluemcintosh's Avatar
Bluemcintosh Bluemcintosh is offline
trust god : No fear
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Toronto Canada
Posts: 613
Default

Bart ....WoW....Thank you for sharing. Interesting .
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 03-24-2013, 07:43 PM
Still-One's Avatar
Still-One Still-One is offline
It is turned down!!!!


 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Milford, MI
Posts: 32,295
Default

Bart
Thanks for the update. Great photos too.

I really like the design of the TAD line.
__________________
Jim

AMP's: Momentum M-400's
Pre-amp: D'Agostino Momentum HD
Digital:dCS Vivaldi DAC, Clock & Upsampler
Analog:SME 20/3 , Esoteric E-03, Benz Ruby
Speakers: Wilson Alexandria X2 Series 2
Cables: Transparent Opus Speaker & Interconnects & Power Cords
Cables on Digital Shunyata
Shunyata Everest Power Conditioner
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 03-24-2013, 08:28 PM
bakerman bakerman is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 2,143
Default

Thanks Bart. I agree with Jim. I like the aesthetics of their gear.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 03-24-2013, 08:40 PM
Amado Amado is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 492
Default

Thanks, excellent pictures and review
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 03-24-2013, 08:49 PM
JohnThomas JohnThomas is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 574
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by bart View Post
Up to the big boys.
150 kg of gorgeously finished speaker.

[IMG]


This ultra high end combination sounded of course excellent.
Even more low end grunt.
A little remark: it sounded at times a bit too heavy.
For example in choir music (The King's Singer), the voices sounded bigger than live, but this could have something to do with settings in the pre.
I walked around the room again, and I think the sweet spot was a little more narrow than with the Compact Reference.
Don't misunderstand me: the sound was top notch, also when you were 6-8 meters away from the speakers.
These Reference Ones need a lot of space to breathe, that's for sure.

Conclusion.
I think the Compact Reference is the best buy in the TAD range.
It gives you at least 85% of the performance of its big brother (same tweeter, developed in the house).
Only the lowest octave is missing.
Wow sounds like a room 15W X 19 would be to small for the Reference ones.
__________________
Gryphon Essence stereo amp and preamp/dac Hurricane power cords
Fyne Audio F1-10, Lumin T2, Moon 260 Transport
Shunyata Research Everest, Sigma V2 XC,
Shunyata Research Sigma USB and Ethernet
Argento Audio speaker cables and interconnects
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 03-24-2013, 09:03 PM
jdandy's Avatar
jdandy jdandy is offline
Merry Christmas to all




 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: North Central Florida
Posts: 53,227
Default

Bart.......That was an interesting review. The TAD Compact Reference gets good reviews here. The TAD Reference is a monster and beautifully finished. As much as the view out the glass may have been appreciated, that was not the best setup for auditioning speakers, although the room looked very comfortable. Thank you for taking us along.
__________________
Dan



STUDIO - McIntosh C1000C/P, MC2301 (2), MR88, Aurender N10, Esoteric K-01X, Shunyata Sigma spdif digital cable, Sonos Connect, PurePower 2000, Stillpoints, Furutech Flux 50, Michell Gyro SE, Michell HR Power Supply, SME 309, Ortofon Cadenza Black, Wireworld, Sonus faber Amati Anniversario
LIVING ROOM - McIntosh C2300, MC75 (2), MR85, Magnum Dynalab 205, Simaudio MOON Neo 260D-T, Schiit Audio Yggdrasil, Aurender N100H, Shunyata Sigma USB cable, Micro Seiki DD40, Ortofon Cadenza Blue, Nakamichi BX-300, Sony 60ES DAT, PS Audio P10, Furutech Flux 50, Sonos Connect, Stillpoints, Wireworld, Kimber, PMC EB1i, JL Audio f113
VINTAGE - McIntosh MA230, Tandberg 3011A tuner, Olive 04HD, Sony DTC-59ES DAT, McIntosh 4300V, JBL 4312A
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 03-24-2013, 10:15 PM
cmalak's Avatar
cmalak cmalak is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 7,602
Default

Bart...that was great going through your wife's pics and your commentary. I agree with Dan that the room did not seem properly set-up to showcase the speakers in their best light. With three speakers in the room, already that is not the ideal situation. Also, were the speakers stationery as in your photos or did they adjust the positioning of each speaker each time they demoed a different model? My guess is they were in their final positions as shown and that again having speakers so close to one another without making any adjustments is properly not adequate. I am surprised by your finding that the larger TADs but also the Compact Reference did not "disappear" or as you say the images did not escape the boundaries of the speaker because TADs in general are known for a disappearing act (especially the Compact Reference model) so again I suspect there was a set-up issue there, although, as I think about it, shame on Mr. Van Leuvenhaege, Brand Ambassador for TAD, for not showing them off in their best light with maybe not such an ideal set-up for this demo.

In any case, a nice read and beautiful pics. Thanks again for posting.

Last edited by cmalak; 03-24-2013 at 10:44 PM.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Audioaficionado.org tested by Norton Internet Security

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 11:24 PM.



Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.10
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
©Copyright 2009-2021 AudioAficionado.org.Privately owned, All Rights Reserved.
Audio Aficionado Sponsors
AudioAficionado Subscriber
AudioAficionado Subscriber
Inspire By Dennis Had
Inspire By Dennis Had
Harmonic Resolution Systems
Harmonic Resolution Systems
Wyred4Sound
Wyred4Sound
Dragonfire Acoustics
Dragonfire Acoustics
GIK Acoustics
GIK Acoustics
Esoteric
Esoteric
AC Infinity
AC Infinity
JL Audio
JL Audio
Add Powr
Add Powr
Legend Audio & Video
Legend Audio & Video
Audio by E
Audio by E
Canton
Canton
Bryston
Bryston
WireWorld Cables
WireWorld Cables
Stillpoints
Stillpoints
Bricasti Design
Bricasti Design
Furutech
Furutech
Shunyata Research
Shunyata Research
Accuphase
Accuphase