Horn speakers are really bright?

So I’m trying to understand why so many people think klipsch or horn speakers are bright 

I have two  set up garage and living room both with horn speakers EPIC CF4 garage and and KLF 30 mahogany living room  

I have recorded this songs with my iPhone  listen to them and feel free to tell me what you don’t like about them
 by the way I don’t have any room treatment



I have a pair of Horns by Autotech Atmosphere MK2 and find them soft.  Extremely detailed but just a little too soft for my liking in my living room.  However, for smaller rooms, I'd say they're near perfect for my needs.  No fatigue or harshness whatsoever. 

Horn loaded speakers are generally so efficient that it’s critical that whatever amp you’re driving them with needs to sound good in the first few to maybe 30 watt peaks. Many solid state amps don’t unless they stay in class “A” mode throughout this range. 

I’ve owned a few Avant-garde’s & now Volti Audio Rivals. Set up properly with good quality electronics & source, they all sound excellent. They don’t have the most extended & airy top end than newer , good & expensive dome or AMT tweeters can offer w/ heroic amplification & maybe not the ultimate in sound stage depth but not harsh or shouty at all. The dynamics of course, are unmatched by anything other than live music. 

Good horn loaded speakers can sound “live” vs really good “hi fi” for just about all other speaker designs imo. I prefer live sound. 

My experience with horns:

Sadly, I was not exposed to mid and low level horns in serious hifi setting. Although I'm not sad about it, neglecting and not playing around with mid-level stuff.

My experience goes for VOTT & few other other Altecs, all in seriously "spruced up" shapes by audiophiles with massive audio life experience and refined systems that driver those speakers. In addition, my own experience with Altec 515/288 and a University coaxial horn driver.

So, based on these experiences I can tell that nothing reveals the state of your electronics, and also the skill of the crossover and cabinet designer as well as horns do. Even minute changes show up very big time and give a potent reflection of what is going on. 

It is more than convenient to blame the horns for all shortcomings in a system, as most speakers tend to throw a benign blanket even over severe flaws.

How do I know this?

When you voice your system with highly evolved horns, then other speakers will be able to deliver their highest potential as well, or reveal their flaws, which, when corrected, will elevate them quite a bit.

Horns are the ultimate frontier. I do not recommend to play around with them unless the rest of the system is already optimized to a very high level. Also, you HAVE TO play around with them. The ain't plug 'n pray. You need to invest serious time to optimize them - or your system. Is it worth it? Yes. It's a paradigm shift.





The big Klipsch's will never fully take on the character of a polite British loudspeaker.  But, who want them to?

As stated in this forum, horns are unforgiving of "mid-fi" and will confidently reveal the warts promenent in lesser systems.  For the adventurous, many of the modification listed here pay big sonic dividends.  In my decades of providing performance upgrades to Klipsch speakers (RB51s -> K'Horns) it is our view that improving the integrity of the signal path yields better bang-for-the-buck gains than component upgrades.  i.e. Use the same (or, better) cabing you use from amp to speaker for all internal cabling in the speaker.  Eliminate spades, lugs, terminal strips, etc. -- siliver solder every connection.

I find the great irony of high efficiency horn speakers is just how good they sound at LOW volume levels.  Just above the threshold of hearing they deliver:  dynamic impact, detail, microdynamics, bandwidth, and spacial information.  Nothing else comes close.