Wharfedale Linton Heritage 85th Anniversary Speakers

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by dolsey01, Mar 12, 2019.

  1. Bieske

    Bieske Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Netherlands
    I'm in the camp of people that finds them smooth and laidback.
    In the first 2/3 weeks the sound of the speaker changed drastically for me, so it might change for the better after the 'break-in period'.
    I use them with an audiolab 6000a amp, the combination is nice to my ears. I'm not familiar with your cambridge amp.

    And last but not least, we all have a different frame of reference and taste, they just might be 'not your cup of tea'.
     
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  2. ChrisR2060

    ChrisR2060 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    I ear them smooth with my marantz integrated 8004, and a little hard in the treble/upper midrange with parasound newclassic preamp/amp separates. I have never heard cambridge. But my experience tells me that they can sound either way, therefore matching seems to be important here.
     
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  3. bgiliberti

    bgiliberti Will You Be My Neighbor?

    Location:
    USA
    If your former studio monitors were KEFs of a certain age (just guessing from your profile), anything is going to sound in your face. (I still love my vintage KEF 103.2, circa 1980, but forward they were not.) I do see comments here that the Linton's need some break-in time to come on song. Generally, speaking, I would consider them neutral.

    As far as positioning, unless you sit quite near to them, side wall reflections can over-accentuate the mid-range. Toeing them in almost "cross-eyed" may help in that regard. However, I think it's largely break-in time, as the new woofers have not yet reached full output, which tends to make the midrange rather prominent..
     
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  4. maglorine

    maglorine Forum Resident

    Location:
    Fairport,NY
    I've noticed the balance is lightweight at lower volumes too and quite midrange centric. Mine are 36" from the front wall to the back of the speaker. At what I call "full volume", which is around 85db in my room, the bass opens up and comes into balance. This effect is more pronounced on these Lintons than most other speakers I've had. This has caused me to bring the subwoofer back out and try integrating it for the purposes of improving the low volume balance. It's currently at a middling level and crossed over at 45hz, which seems to have improved the balance at lower volumes without interfering with the midrange. The effect of the sub is less noticeable at higher volumes because there's more bass generally. It just goes a bit lower. Our hearing is less sensitive to bass at low volumes hence loudness compensation. This seems to strike a good balance for me since about half my listening is early morning/late night.

    My room has treatments and you should try toe-in adjustments. They seemed to help me when I noticed a few recordings that caused the mids to be a bit too much. I only listen with grilles on.
     
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  5. AlecA

    AlecA Forum Resident

    Location:
    New Hampshire, USA
    Hmm, I had a different experience. I moved mine from toe-in to straight ahead and the highs smoothed out a bit. If the tweeters aren't pointing directly at your ears, it may sound less harsh. After I get more time on them, I'll try toeing them in again.
     
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  6. bgiliberti

    bgiliberti Will You Be My Neighbor?

    Location:
    USA
    Any positioning off axis, in or out, will tend to make the sound less bright when you are sitting close. The reason you toe-in when you sit further away you is to reduce the side wall reflections, which increase treble disproportionately, because they are additive. If you sit very close, sidewall reflections matter much less; toeing straight or towing out reduces the treble simply because you are more off axis.
     
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  7. gwompek

    gwompek Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Greenville, SC
    I just got my set yesterday. My set is 2nd hand but the previous owner had very low hours on them (they were a replacement set that he ended up not keeping) so the break-in is possibly still in process. I am still forming my impressions so won't say anything good or bad at this point.

    Just curious if anyone would be willing to share some specific artists/albums/tracks they are listening to in their systems. I think it would be interesting to see what the folks who say they are bright and strident listen to and conversely what the folks who find them to be more laid back listen to. Obviously there are a thousand other system and environmental factors at play, but still might help some folks out.

    I feel like I have experienced both laid back and overly forward in the short time I have been listening. For example the new album by the band Silver Scrolls "Music for Walks" is definitely on the warmer side and sounds fantastic. However, the 2016 Sabbath remasters have me reaching for the treble knob to turn it down. Doesn't sound bad necessarily, but definitely brighter than I'm used to.
     
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  8. bgiliberti

    bgiliberti Will You Be My Neighbor?

    Location:
    USA
    Black Sabbath has me looking for the off switch.;)
     
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  9. happysunshine

    happysunshine Active Member

    Location:
    Kalmar, Sweden
    The idea of a "break-in period" has always been something of a mystery to me... Is there such a thing or is it placebo? In this case, I really hope this is true and that the (upper) midrange will eventually change for the better! The Cambridge amp is said to be on the forward and lively side of neutral, so I assumed it would pair up well with the more laid back Linton's. I guess time will tell, but I only have another week before I have to send them back if I decide not to keep them.

    You're absolutely right - the KEFs are from the early/mid 80's and definitely laidback! However, the studio monitors I was referring to are Neumann KH 120 which, along with the KEF's, has been my main speakers for the last 5-6 years. But then again, the Neumann's have a certain smooth "hi-fi sheen" to them in the upper frequencies and might be just a little bit recessed in the mids.

    That's what I'm hearing too. I guess these speakers need a bit of volume to sound at their best? Yesterday I moved the speakers right up to the (concrete) wall, and that actually improved the sound quite a bit -- and the bass doesn't sound boomy at all. I also went from a slight toe-in to having them face forward to avoid having the tweeters pointing straight at me. There is a lot of deep bass in these speakers, but it's more in the sub-80 Hz range so at the moment it's mostly mid's and treble plus a hint of that deep bass.

    Oh, and by the way: I cranked up some sine waves the other day, going from around 80 down to 35 Hz and the neighbors seemed really annoyed. Windows were rattling!

    There's one album that sounded truly excellent on these speakers: MoFi's recent reissue of "I Walk the Line" by Johnny Cash. "produk 29 [101]" by Aphex Twin is a track I know by heart, but again, it's really mid-centric with just a hint of that deeper bass on these speakers.
     
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  10. gwompek

    gwompek Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Greenville, SC
    LOL - Fair enough.

    I will check those out and see how they sound on my system. I love Johnny Cash and Aphex Twin so looking forward to it.
     
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  11. Rick58

    Rick58 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Dublin, CA, USA
    I think with speakers break in is most likely to be real because of the physical changes with moving cones and surrounds. Other physical mechanisms are in the tweeter as well. That said, some speakers may change more than others and some hardly or none at all. But I would think at least some. Manufacturers may run the speakers for some time as well. I don’t know if Wharfedale does that or not. Likely not from some of the comments.

    My Triangle Titus speakers and previous B&W 601 speakers certainly changed in the bass (includes midrange as they are 2 ways) over tens of hours. I didn’t notice it on my monitor audio silver eights but I wasn’t really listening for that. They were in a surround system at the time.
     
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  12. bgiliberti

    bgiliberti Will You Be My Neighbor?

    Location:
    USA
    I agree with you, seems more plausible with speakers, although counter-intuitively, I've noticed it (or possibly imagined it) with electronics, but never with speakers.
     
  13. Rick58

    Rick58 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Dublin, CA, USA
    I've certainly heard it when changing capacitors in tube amps and speaker crossovers. I think even the measurements crowd will admit things can change over initial exposure to signals and voltage in these components and materials. My Tituses had 'no' bass for the first several hours, then it bloomed quite nicely. Changing caps in my 60s vintage Dynaco SCA-35 integrated (many years previous to that), I went from originals to $1.50 each Orange Drops, definite change in sonics but maybe 'break in' wasn't noticeable. I don't recall and maybe wasn't 'aware' to listen for that. Then upgraded to 'boutique' $8 caps (RelCaps and Hovland MusiCaps) ... the initial sound was VERY sibilant, even my non-audiophile wife commented on it. After a few hours (phew!) things settled down nicely and the increased musicality was apparent, I think even to her.
     
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  14. ChrisR2060

    ChrisR2060 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    Well, i guess the Lintons may not be your thing with the cambridge. Have you tried moving the speakers a little? Toe-in, closer/further from each other, away from the walls and all that jazz?
    It looks like the parasound gear I just got is a bit like the Cambridge - a little forward and lively in the upper registers. It is a change from the marantz; what has definitely improved is the sheer power and dynamic abilities of the parasound - that's really appreciable on any speaker i think.
     
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  15. core3m

    core3m Active Member

    Location:
    Poland
    Hello @happysunshine.

    That's why... because Linton's are not overall laid back.. sure, they are laid back when we compare them to some new high "V" signature speakers. For me Linton's are pretty neutral/natural with a warm boosted (big) midrange.
    I had them with Cambridge CD/amplifier for few months.
    Overall sound was shrill on vocals.
    For me Its easy to make Linton's warm and smooth speaker but its hard to make Linton's bright and very open without "shrill" on vocals. That's why i prefer them with more musical amplifier and EQ.
     
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  16. happysunshine

    happysunshine Active Member

    Location:
    Kalmar, Sweden
    OK, so I've moved the speakers around a bit more. Here's what I hear when I play that Aphex Twin track:

    There's not that much bass, apart from a hint of R-E-A-L-L-Y deep bass which most likely stems from wall and room reflections. The bass in the track is mostly in the upper bass/lower mid-range register. The kick drum is mostly a "pock" sound (is that a word?) with not that much bass to it.

    When I sit in my listening position, it's like the bass cancel itself out. If I move my head forward, closer to the speakers, the bass improves quite a bit and the sound becomes less in your face. I'm not used to speakers being so dependant on the exact sweet spot. Or perhaps I listen to music in a room with the world's worst acoustics.
     
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  17. core3m

    core3m Active Member

    Location:
    Poland
    Try to play Ozzy Osbourne Crazy Train with Cambridge :)
    "All aboard..." Voice sound really shrill for me with Cambridge and few other bright amps.
     
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  18. Rick58

    Rick58 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Dublin, CA, USA
    Don't know for sure, but resonances and room modes/nodes can certainly affect response. Move seat back and forth (if you're able) to get best sound ... there's some procedures for moving speakers and seat for optimum sonics. I usually start with one of the Cardas suggestions ... Cardas Room Setup Guide

    and another fun page amroc - THE Room Mode Calculator for looking at nodes etc. ...
     
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2020 at 11:00 PM
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  19. happysunshine

    happysunshine Active Member

    Location:
    Kalmar, Sweden
    Thanks for those links, I'll check them out! My room is a bit unusual in its shape, but I'll dig around and see if I find something that'll fit.

    Here's what my room looks like:

    [​IMG]
     
  20. Classicrock

    Classicrock Forum Resident

    Location:
    South West, UK.
    I think something common with all the new Wharfedale models is having a fairly powerful quality amp to drive them to decent levels. They are nominal 6 ohm though medium efficiency. At the affordable end the Audiolab 6000A seems to sound good with them. Your amp should have enough power I think at least but may be too forward to compliment soundwise. Perhaps you might prefer the presentation of the Evo 4.2 or 4.4 which have a more modern sound but a better tweeter and better soundstaging, though requiring listening more from a sweet spot. In the case of the 4.4 more extended bass. The treble on these models is nice and smooth while remaining detailed and with warm mids from the dome midrange driver.
     
  21. gwompek

    gwompek Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Greenville, SC
    @happysunshine I spent some time listening to that whole Aphex Twin album. Really good stuff, I need to buy it. I listened through my streaming setup which is fairly low budget(Roon/Tidal - Raspberry Pi > Topping D30 DAC > Denon PMA 2000 IV).

    Using that setup, I did not get the impression of the Lintons being overly bright or bass shy while listening to Syro. The bass was very present at moderate volume. Maybe a bit louder than normal because my son and I were having to raise our voices slight to converse.

    One thing I did notice while doing further listening was comparing CDs straight from my Rega Brio-R or from the Rega into the coax input of the Topping DAC. The latter was much smoother than the RCA out of the CD player. The RCA out was much more in your face. Maybe not in a bad way as it was definitely more detailed, but I felt that to enjoy the bass at lower volumes, having a smoother sound helps for me. Perfect example, I noticed this effect especially on those Sabbath discs I mentioned earlier. Through the Topping DAC all was well and I did not need to touch the eq. However, some of the imaging and detail was gone. I guess it is really dependent on the type of listening I'm doing. Usually I prefer warm/musical over detailed and analytic.

    I'm using the integrated phono stage on the Denon and it sounds a little thin to me, but the jury is still out in terms of how it sounds with the Linton's. Haven't spent as much time on vinyl yet due to the busy week.

    All that is to say, try try different sources. I believe the Cambridge has an on-board Sabre DAC if I'm not mistaken. If you are using that, exclusively try something else. Perhaps it is less about the amplifier itself and more about the source.

    I'm still reserving judgment on my Linton's for the time being.
     
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  22. Encore

    Encore Forum Resident

    Location:
    Denmark
    That may very well be your room. In my old apartment, bass below about 35 Hz simply wasn't possible for some reason, no matter where I placed the speakers. When I moved to my current apartment to a much larger listening room, my 6 inch woofers could suddenly play the deep 29 Hz bass note at 1:20 in Michael Jackson's Earth Song (where he sings "Did you ever stop to notice"). I was ecstatic, but it soon turned out that room has other problems, notably a deep suck-out centered around 50 Hz or so down the middle of the room. Which means that I have to have the speakers fire across the short length of the room, even though soundstage is much better the other way around.

    All this just to illustrate that your room can have a tremendous influence on the bass you get from your speakers.
     
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  23. gwompek

    gwompek Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Greenville, SC
    Of course! Totally agree environmental factors, room modes, etc play a huge part as well.

    But in this particular case my source made a large difference as well.

    Just my 2 cents.
     
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  24. Hydrology

    Hydrology Well-Known Member

    The Cambridge is your problem. Get rid of it for either an Audiolab 6000A, Leak Stereo 130 or even a Rega Elex-R - they will be a better match
     
  25. bgiliberti

    bgiliberti Will You Be My Neighbor?

    Location:
    USA
    To identify and hopefully eliminate room resonances, Harbeth designer Alan Shaw says that the best tools are your hands -- clap loudly and identify areas where you hear an echo-ey sound. Then, you can either treat those areas acoustically, or move the speakers to an area that minimizes the resonances in your listening room. I did find a couple such areas that way, and while I can't swear that method works for everyone, by adding some plants in the areas (above two bookcases I had ), it noticeably settled things down for me, put the overall sound in better balance, and improved the imaging.
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2020 at 10:14 AM
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