Thiel Takes a Different Direction with TT3 Tower Speaker
Since the company's founding in 1978, Thiel Audio has always divided audio signals among its woofers, midranges and tweeters using first-order (6 dB/octave) crossover circuits. But with the passing of company founder Jim Thiel in 2009, and the hiring of ex-PSB, ex-SVS engineer Mark Mason to head the company's speaker design, the company's moving beyond Thiel's original concepts.
At CES, Thiel showed two new products that don't use first-order crossovers: the TT3 tower speaker and the TM3 bookshelf speaker. Why not stick with first-order crossovers? Because unless impeccably executed, they tend to produce tweeter distortion and poor vertical dispersion. Thiel devoted his life to fixing these problems, and while it's generally accepted that he succeeded, Mason felt that he could build better speakers by going beyond the first-order crossover.
The $14,999/pair TT3 tower incorporates two 8-inch woofers, a 6.5-inch midwoofer, a 4-inch midrange and a 1-inch tweeter, all mounted in a cabinet made from formed 12-layer plywood. It's just one of three new tower speakers the company has planned. Expect to see it in stores sometime in late spring.
For more on the TM3 bookshelf and other speakers in the series, check out Mark Fleishmann's blog.