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Select vs. Taboo (Read 7379 times)
JDW
Ex Member



Select vs. Taboo
02/25/06 at 14:48:52
 
Been entertaining the thought of getting a Taboo. Wondered if I can get some insight from those that own or have heard both in a system. Had my eye on those SE34 monobloc's but I don't think they are made anymore, are they?
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Lon
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Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #1 - 02/25/06 at 15:28:02
 
Steve will still make the Monoblocks, they're just considered custom amps now, not production amps.  (Which may be good, get a custom amp. . . has an allure!)  I have these and love them.  

I've had the Select and the Monoblocks are very close in sound to my ears on my Radials.  But there's a lot more power.  I think a lot depends on your speaker choices.  The Taboo will drive diffrent speakers very well I think than the Select. . . . I'll watch as others pipe in on this thread.

Seems to me if you really like your speakers a C or a Select would be the choices. (The C may be ultimately more musical as it's a bit more forgiving in comparison to the very revealing Select).
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« Last Edit: 02/25/06 at 15:31:02 by Lon »  
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Sam in USA
Ex Member



Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #2 - 02/25/06 at 16:51:34
 
Like Lon said, the biggest advantage of a Taboo (other than more power ofcourse) is it can drive speakers from 4-16 ohms range.

I own both Taboo and CS. In the midrange they are head to head. Imaging and sound stage, Taboo has a slight edge IMO. Taboo also has advantage at the bottom end.
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JDW
Ex Member



Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #3 - 02/26/06 at 03:02:57
 
I love my CS. Even replaced the grid stop resistors with 330 Ohm Tantalum's as well as the ones on the power tubes. Made a noticable improvement (with SelmerDave's help, thanks again) but I have a very wide range of music. From Classical to Jazz to some experimental and sometimes some hard driving freeform fusion stuff. 2 watts doesn't always satisfy when the recording is begging to be turned up. Having the Parker 95's (built by Mullman) helps a lot but...that's why I built the Buschhorns, which are awaiting the drivers, thinking I'd like to drive them with something with a little more guts. Hopefully something single-ended. It's hard to go back to Push-Pull once you've tasted SET's. I remember hearing Mullman's Buschhorns and his SE34I, the sound was quite impressive. Might be selling my CS soon, and the Parker's, hmm...Thanks for the feedback.
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mullman
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Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #4 - 02/26/06 at 11:35:19
 
Don't sell the CS yet!
Mod it!
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JDW
Ex Member



Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #5 - 02/26/06 at 13:10:02
 
Can you elaborate more on the "Uber-Mod" for me? Still 2 watts? The FE's are 8 ohm yes?
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rayd
Ex Member



Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #6 - 02/26/06 at 15:13:12
 
[quote author=mullman  link=1140882532/0#4 date=1140953719]Don't sell the CS yet!
Mod it! [/quote]

Smiley
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JDW
Ex Member



Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #7 - 03/02/06 at 20:52:53
 
Well my Buschhorns are up and running. I think these will be my speaker of choice. A different presentation from the Parkers. I think a Taboo would love these.
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chrisby
Ex Member



Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #8 - 03/02/06 at 23:05:24
 
If you like the B-Horns with 103's,  you should try the 126's .  It'll l take some grinding to fit, so there's no easy going back - but I think you'll notice a huge improvement in sensitivity and bass output.
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JDW
Ex Member



Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #9 - 03/02/06 at 23:09:24
 
Thanks Chrisby,

I was just visiting The Hornshoppe website. Looks like he's using Blu Tack to damp the basket. Would I replace my Acoustafil with that little piece of foam?
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Doorman
Ex Member



Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #10 - 03/03/06 at 01:58:51
 
My modded B'horns are currently sporting a pair of FE126E's. The added sensitivity with the Select is nice, the bass seems a bit more balanced than with the FE108EZ's. But either the 108's or the 126's will really make those horns sing!
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chrisby
Ex Member



Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #11 - 03/03/06 at 21:41:35
 
[quote author=JDW  link=1140882532/0#9 date=1141340964] Thanks Chrisby,

I was just visiting The Hornshoppe website. Looks like he's using Blu Tack to damp the basket. Would I replace my Acoustafil with that little piece of foam? [/quote]

One of several differences between the B'horns and Ed's is the size/shape of the CC, so it's not a sure thing that the single layer of foam would do the trick - but it can't hurt to play with it.

it can never hurt to play with your horn
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gnat leader
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Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #12 - 03/04/06 at 01:00:47
 
I found the CS is slightly "warmer", TABOO is slightly "leaner".  Overall I like the TABOO better for 1) ability to drive most speakers better with more bass and headroom - unless you have 100+db efficient speakers, and 2) it sounds more like "live" music with the removal of that slight triode bloom.
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JDW
Ex Member



Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #13 - 03/05/06 at 22:37:34
 
What are you're impressions of the Taboo with and w/o the CSP Gnat leader?
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JDW
Ex Member



Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #14 - 03/06/06 at 23:52:17
 
Okay Mullman,

I'm going to wait until the FE126's come for my B'Horns and see (or is that hear) what happens. If I'm not completely satisfied, my CS may be posted for sale. BTW, my cat was no where near the amp. There is a back order at Madisound for the 126 drivers. The Decware forum strikes again. Ha!
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Sam in USA
Ex Member



Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #15 - 03/07/06 at 00:31:31
 
PM Uncle Sam if you are selling the select  :D
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gnat leader
Ex Member



Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #16 - 03/10/06 at 06:10:11
 
[quote author=JDW  link=1140882532/0#13 date=1141598254] What are you're impressions of the Taboo with and w/o the CSP Gnat leader? [/quote]

You know, I don't remember. But in any case, I can't really do without it. I had my CD player moded to bypass the output stage - coming direct off the DAC. So I need the extra gain of the CSP preamp.  The whole setup works awesome. Highly detailed yet smooth.
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144cubits
Ex Member



Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #17 - 03/24/06 at 03:12:41
 
I drive my taboo direct with no preamp and although it requires the volume to be at about 2 o clock the sound is great. Compared to my C-ex  the Taboo sounds leaner more detailed less bass, less bloom.

The taboo has the wonderful gift of bringing voices alive that the C couldn't quite match. If I had just a tad more bass I'd be in sonic heaven...no I can't afford a CSP right now!  ::)
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gnat leader
Ex Member



Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #18 - 03/24/06 at 03:19:21
 
[quote author=144cubits  link=1140882532/15#17 date=1143169961]I drive my taboo direct with no preamp and although it requires the volume to be at about 2 o clock the sound is great. Compared to my C-ex  the Taboo sounds leaner more detailed less bass, less bloom.

The taboo has the wonderful gift of bringing voices alive that the C couldn't quite match. If I had just a tad more bass I'd be in sonic heaven...no I can't afford a CSP right now!  ::) [/quote]

Are you running a sub with Ed's horns?  If not, that would explain your opinion of lacking in bass. I really don't think it's the TABOO amp.  Not dirting Ed's horns.  They are a good sounding and awesome imaging speaker, but are lacking in the bass regions for sure.

Thinking about this a little more... but you are saying the CS gives you more bass with Ed's horns?  That makes no sense to me... Ed's horns are 8 ohm aren't they?  That should be a better match for the TABOO than the CS which likes things closer to 2-4ohms better.

That said, setting aside the topic of bass output - I can see why Ed's horns could be a better matcher OVERALL to the CS than the TABOO in certain circumstances.  I say this because I find Ed's horns to be more on the "lean" or put anothe way "detailed" side.  With some speakers, and in some rooms, I can see the TABOO sounding this way too.  So maybe the match doesn't work for some people.  However, I have also read posts from at least one person that uses both the TABOO and Ed's horns that loves the combination.  So maybe it's your room (treatment)? Or it's just your personal taste/preference?

Note: I haven't heard the latest incarnation of Ed's Horns with the new driver, so keep that in mind regarding my above comments. Still, I believe they are 8 ohms.
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« Last Edit: 03/24/06 at 03:32:54 by Brad »  
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144cubits
Ex Member



Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #19 - 03/24/06 at 03:27:56
 
Gnat, I had a C not a CS but yes the bass was better with the C and no need for a sub ( I love my beloved Horns) I was referring to the csp which people have stated increases the bass and the general oomph of the system.
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gnat leader
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Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #20 - 03/24/06 at 03:35:06
 
Oops, sorry. Wasted typing. Should have read your post better  ::)
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Doorman
Ex Member



Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #21 - 03/24/06 at 03:58:17
 
144: What drivers are in your horns? If the 108 sigmas, the 126's have more bass output.
                                                              Don
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144cubits
Ex Member



Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #22 - 03/24/06 at 17:43:53
 
Don, yes I have the new 126's and they are a great improvement not just in the bass but in every area! Again I'm not saying the taboo is lacking in bass; I'm saying that compared to my old C there is less bass.

To be clear, I am NOT a bassaholic I just think that a little more punch at the bottom would round out things nicely.

Notwithstanding my small quibble I must say that the combo of the Taboo with Ed's Horns is the best sound I've ever had  in my small room. My main system is 10 times the price and yet I find myself listening to the Taboo 10 times as much! Cheesy

Fred
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Doug_C.
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Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #23 - 04/06/06 at 17:23:57
 
I have not heard the Taboo (with it's additional power) but thought I would offer my experience with a single SE84CS amp as far as what kind of volume can be achieved with only one of these little amps. I listen to a variety of music but like listening to Rock at high levels also. About 4 years ago I purchased the SE84CS and a pair of Klipsch RF-7's with a stated efficiency of 102 db. At that time I was running my DVD player directly into the SE84CS with my 18" Velodyne sub connected via speaker level connections.

This minimal set-up just blew away my expensive main SS system and soon completely replaced it. For the most part I never lacked good clean volume but there were a few recordings where I wished I could squeeze out a bit more without distortion. The RF-7's by themselves produced good levels of bass but there is no substitute for a quality, properly placed sub. With this set-up some recordings were a tad bit edgey on the top end and could be a bit muddy at times on the low end.

Sometime later I introduced the Bel-Canto DAC and this was an improvement, reducing the top end edge and bottom end mud on some recordings that I was getting from my DVD player. Later I installed the relatively inexpensive Monarchy DIP 24/96 Upsampler between the DVD player and Bel-Canto and was really struck by the improvement. The top end became silky smooth and the bottom end very clean and extended. I was actually able to increase my sub volume without any hint of mud. Where the low end had been a bit over the top at times it was now as if I were simply submerged in a pool of deep clean bass. Kick drums were right there in the room and you could feel each impact.

The introduction of the Bel-Canto and Monarchy DIP convinced me of how critical a good digital front end can be. The Klipsch RF-7s are very detailed and reproduce everything thrown at them, including low end mud and high end edge from a weak digital front end. The RF-7's are the first speakers I've ever had for this length of time (4 years) with no thought of trying something else which is nice.

I want to note also that I was blown away by the quality of the audio from my Direct TV receiver. The Monarchy DIP accepts both digital and optical inputs with a switch between the two. My DVD is connected via the digital connection and the Direct TV receiver via the optical connection. The Monarchy and Bel-Canto really add to the TV audio experience. I also boxed up my expensive surround sound speaker system used previously for TV & DVD. Overall my simple 2-channel system is more satisfying on TV & DVD. An interesting side note, the Bel-Canto also accepts optical input but it will not lock on to the optical output from my Direct TV receiver where the Monarchy does?

At this point I started to considered the SE84CSP Pre-Amp. The only problem was that my experience with the SE84CS Amp had convinced me that fewer components in the analog path the better. Being unconvinced that adding another component could offer any improvement it took a year before I finally decided what the heck lets try one.

After some inital frustration with an anoying Hum from the SE84CSP I finally got everything connected to eliminate that issue and can only say WOW!!!!!!!!! Across the spectrum everything is more detailed and extended. Instrument separation and decay were noticably improved. The boundries of my 12' X 24' room disapeared and the studio space where each song was recorded became more aparent.

Since introducing the SE84CSP I have yet to find a recording where I wanted for more volume. I should note that my 12' X 24' listening room has a large opening to and adjacent kitchen / dining area of the same size and a second opening into a 12' X 14' room. When listening at high levels the volume pot on the CSP is at about 12 o'clock. On a few recordings the max volume setting is 1 o'clock with no distortion, edge or mud. The CSP really digs out the last few details leaving me with the sense of just being submerged in a satisfying pool of music with no listener fatigue.

So with the right front end, sub and high efficency speakers the SE84CS by itself can produce all the volume one could want in relatively large rooms. The added benefits of the CSP make this pre-amp a real bargin at the price and a must have based on the results in my system. I can't comment on how the CSP might perform with other equipment.

Now for those on this site that have nice single driver speakers, I'm not suggesting that the Klipsch RF-7s are a high end speaker. I'm simply suggesting they have a lot to offer when paired up with the right tube equipment. It's interesting that when I first got the RF-7's my SE84CS had not yet arrived so I hooked them up to my relatively expensive SS system and was not overly impressed, a tad edgey, sometimes a bit muddy and a somewhat congested soundstage. It was not until I got the CS and stripped my system down to the bare minimums that I could start to see the potential of these speakers.

Having said all this, if you want high volume levels and plan to use speakers with an efficency under 100 db then you will probably want an amp with more power. In my case however, I like the CS so much I can't imagine ever replacing it with anything else. If anyone actually makes it to this point of my post, my apologies for the long ramblings.

Doug C.

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JDW
Ex Member



Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #24 - 04/09/06 at 01:47:20
 
Thanks for your post Doug. I am not familiar with the Klipsch speakers you mentioned nor have I ever heard any. I know they are highly regarded. I took my CSP out of the loop recently when I noticed some hum also. Nothing drastic but still annoying. I haven't been listening to my CS for a while, at least since I built my Buschhorns. Today I replaced the Fostex FE103's with the 126's. The added sensitivity really makes a difference. 93db vs. 88db. With my 30 watt 6L6 amp I have plenty of volume and extension at the upper and lower ends. I don't run a pre with my amp right now. I am using a pair of Endler Audio stepped attenuators. Less, sometimes, really is more. I found it more transparent than with the CSP in the loop. I sold my CSP to a friend. My CS liked the Parker 95's which have 93db (according to john in CR), I'll have to see how they like the updated drivers in the Buschhorns. Oh, I totally agree with having a good front end. The CS will let you know if your front end equipment sucks, real fast. Happy listening.
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« Last Edit: 04/09/06 at 13:42:59 by Piglet »  
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Doorman
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Re: Select vs. Taboo
Reply #25 - 04/09/06 at 02:00:16
 
JDW: I'm currently driving my 126's, in modded B'horn cabs, with a SE84CS-EX. In my 13x24 room, listening @ about 8' from speakers, I've plenty of volume. Not very scientific, I know, but with the extra sens. of the 126's over the 108EZ's,volume is simply not an issue(for me!)
                                                                 Don
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