Some thoughts on ASR and the reviews

I’ve briefly taken a look at some online reviews for budget Tekton speakers from ASR and Youtube. Both are based on Klippel quasi-anechoic measurements to achieve "in-room" simulations.

As an amateur speaker designer, and lover of graphs and data I have some thoughts. I mostly hope this helps the entire A’gon community get a little more perspective into how a speaker builder would think about the data.

Of course, I’ve only skimmed the data I’ve seen, I’m no expert, and have no eyes or ears on actual Tekton speakers. Please take this as purely an academic exercise based on limited and incomplete knowledge.

1. Speaker pricing.

One ASR review spends an amazing amount of time and effort analyzing the ~$800 US Tekton M-Lore. That price compares very favorably with a full Seas A26 kit from Madisound, around $1,700. I mean, not sure these inexpensive speakers deserve quite the nit-picking done here.

2. Measuring mid-woofers is hard.

The standard practice for analyzing speakers is called "quasi-anechoic." That is, we pretend to do so in a room free of reflections or boundaries. You do this with very close measurements (within 1/2") of the components, blended together. There are a couple of ways this can be incomplete though.

a - Midwoofers measure much worse this way than in a truly anechoic room. The 7" Scanspeak Revelators are good examples of this. The close mic response is deceptively bad but the 1m in-room measurements smooth out a lot of problems. If you took the close-mic measurements (as seen in the spec sheet) as correct you’d make the wrong crossover.

b - Baffle step - As popularized and researched by the late, great Jeff Bagby, the effects of the baffle on the output need to be included in any whole speaker/room simulation, which of course also means the speaker should have this built in when it is not a near-wall speaker. I don’t know enough about the Klippel simulation, but if this is not included you’ll get a bass-lite expereinced compared to real life. The effects of baffle compensation is to have more bass, but an overall lower sensitivity rating.

For both of those reasons, an actual in-room measurement is critical to assessing actual speaker behavior. We may not all have the same room, but this is a great way to see the actual mid-woofer response as well as the effects of any baffle step compensation.

Looking at the quasi anechoic measurements done by ASR and Erin it _seems_ that these speakers are not compensated, which may be OK if close-wall placement is expected.

In either event, you really want to see the actual in-room response, not just the simulated response before passing judgement. If I had to critique based strictly on the measurements and simulations, I’d 100% wonder if a better design wouldn’t be to trade sensitivity for more bass, and the in-room response would tell me that.

3. Crossover point and dispersion

One of the most important choices a speaker designer has is picking the -3 or -6 dB point for the high and low pass filters. A lot of things have to be balanced and traded off, including cost of crossover parts.

Both of the reviews, above, seem to imply a crossover point that is too high for a smooth transition from the woofer to the tweeters. No speaker can avoid rolling off the treble as you go off-axis, but the best at this do so very evenly. This gives the best off-axis performance and offers up great imaging and wide sweet spots. You’d think this was a budget speaker problem, but it is not. Look at reviews for B&W’s D series speakers, and many Focal models as examples of expensive, well received speakers that don’t excel at this.

Speakers which DO typically excel here include Revel and Magico. This is by no means a story that you should buy Revel because B&W sucks, at all. Buy what you like. I’m just pointing out that this limited dispersion problem is not at all unique to Tekton. And in fact many other Tekton speakers don’t suffer this particular set of challenges.

In the case of the M-Lore, the tweeter has really amazingly good dynamic range. If I was the designer I’d definitely want to ask if I could lower the crossover 1 kHz, which would give up a little power handling but improve the off-axis response.  One big reason not to is crossover costs.  I may have to add more parts to flatten the tweeter response well enough to extend it's useful range.  In other words, a higher crossover point may hide tweeter deficiencies.  Again, Tekton is NOT alone if they did this calculus.

I’ve probably made a lot of omissions here, but I hope this helps readers think about speaker performance and costs in a more complete manner. The listening tests always matter more than the measurements, so finding reviewers with trustworthy ears is really more important than taste-makers who let the tools, which may not be properly used, judge the experience.


I appreciate that @amir_asr  is here. He has been very patient with the attacks on him, on this forum.

Thank you.

Don't forget that both personal taste (subjective) and measurements (objective) come into play when buying equipment. People seem to forget this point.

Many in the ASR crowd as many in this forum had no idea what is psychoacoustics...

Then they quarrel over the small or larger part of the egg... Swift cannot age...


Don't forget that both personal taste (subjective) and measurements (objective) come into play when buying equipment. People seem to forget this point.

Most measurements are worthless to me. Very few measurements I would look at:

speaker sensitivity (this will tell me what kind of amp I would need to make them sing)

Does an amp double in power from 8 ohms to 4?

Is the amp class A or A/B, how many watts in class a?

It is well proven that components that have measured bad sound very good and vice versa. This goes for this guys measurements and stereophiles. 
Your ears are the best instruments to use when evaluating audio components.

As for distortion, these reviewers want to see 0 distortion, but you know that speakers have quite a bit of distortion as well as tube amps and people swear tube amps sound best.


Music is art. Art has nothing to do with how good it measures. Art appreciation is a totally subjective thing. Ahhh!

But the gear that plays the music…..that’s technology. Measurements are pretty much the only way to clearly identify technology done well versus not so much. In fact the only way to clearly define a technology is to measure it. It’s all about the numbers and there is no getting around it. Good engineers tend to be very good at math!

So there is no dilemma here. No need to pick just one. Art is subjective. Technology is not. It takes two to tango but only one can lead. Take your pick!

most people dont study nor read books...

Acoustics exist coming from a system/room with objective acoustic parameters  toward specific ears canals and specific HTRF is not only and merely a subjective matter it is an objective acoustics matter too...

Acoustics measures and parameters are not electrical specs of a piece of gear...

Acoustics is an art based science or a science applied as an art in architecture for example or in the design of Choueiri filters etc I used it in my room and i used it to modify my speakers which became stunningly better...

I can recommend you an article if you dont like book ? 😊


Music is art. Art has nothing to do with how good it measures. Art appreciation is a totally subjective thing.