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Reflector Audio U.S.A. releases the Q1818 impulse-correct open-baffle monitor system
Old 12th January 2020
  #1
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Reflector Audio U.S.A. releases the Q1818 impulse-correct open-baffle monitor system

Reflector Audio U.S.A. releases the Q1818 impulse-correct open-baffle monitor system-q1818-symm.jpg
Reflector Audio U.S.A. releases the Q1818 impulse-correct open-baffle monitor system

The open-baffle loudspeaker specialists Reflector Audio U.S.A. have released their debut reference main monitor system the Q1818, which offers a uniquely coherent and insightful listening experience tailored to eliminate guesswork from critical mixing, mastering and production work.

"The stereo imaging is great, and my mixes have been translating well across the board on different systems in ways I couldn’t achieve before. One of the things I love most about Q1818 loudspeaker system is that whether I’m playing at super quiet volume, or house shaking levels, the image remains the same, which is no easy feat. Hearing sound without any cabinet artifacts like acoustic compression and distortion has been a powerful tool as well as an inspiring way to listen, even at low SPLs, really at ANY volume," says legendary producer Just Blaze (Jay-Z, Beyonce, Eminem)

Drawing from the roots of studio monitoring, the heart of the Q1818 is a baffleless coaxial driver array made from four 18” drivers with a compression driver taking care of the critical midrange and treble frequencies. The patented coaxial driver array benefits from a sophisticated on-board DSP which makes sure the speaker is impulse-correct thus maintaining the acoustic waveform authentic to the electric input. Combined with the figure-of-8 polar pattern inherent to the open-baffle speaker, the Q1818 offers unparalleled insight into the material, assuring that all engineering decisions can be made with confidence that the resulting material will make the right impact on every listener out there.

"A great part of my life has been devoted to the audio industry, most of it at Blue Microphones where we created class leading recording mics. When I first had a chance to listen to Reflector Audio loudspeakers I was fascinated at how natural and sometimes unforgiving they showed how music was recorded. I knew at that very moment that this unique technology should be made available to the professional market and decided to found Reflector Audio U.S.A.", added Martins Saulespurens, the CEO of the company.

Every Q1818 system is tuned to the listening environment by the Reflector Audio U.S.A. team of engineers which assures peak performance everywhere. The on-board DSP is accessible via an application which makes switching configuration profiles quick and effortless.

Reflector Audio U.S.A. invites everyone to experience the Q1818 system for themselves in NAMM Show 2020 at booth 17313. The team will be there both to demonstrate the capabilities of the speaker system and to answer everyone’s questions about the rationale behind the unusual design. To ensure a reasonably quiet listening environment an isolation booth kindly provided by Taytrix will be used.
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Reflector Audio U.S.A. releases the Q1818 impulse-correct open-baffle monitor system-q1818-symm.jpg  
Old 12th January 2020
  #2
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~ufo~'s Avatar
Well that’s fascinating.
Old 14th January 2020
  #3
Gear Maniac
 

Incredible. These must require enormously powerful amplifiers.
Old 14th January 2020
  #4
sick! looks like they sound awesome .....but.....how much
Old 14th January 2020
  #5
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Sebastian N's Avatar
 

Old 14th January 2020
  #6
Was kindly invited by Martins to listen / evaluate this system.
All I can say - this is a real wonder of engineering, knowledge and vision.
Created by devoted people with highest standards.

Norm
Old 14th January 2020
  #7
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eggsmack View Post
Incredible. These must require enormously powerful amplifiers.
It looks to be all PA drivers so honestly probably not. Say 200w into each would likely be quite loud.
Old 14th January 2020
  #8
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by P. Ness View Post
It looks to be all PA drivers so honestly probably not. Say 200w into each would likely be quite loud.
Quite loud if you're using an enclosure (like we are all used to). I would think it's going to take a lot of power to produce low mids on a system that has no baffle whatsoever. It seems like they're still needing an open enclosure to help with efficiency while producing low end.

The book I've read on speaker design only really concerned itself with the physics of enclosures. This design truly seems to be thinking outside the box
Old 14th January 2020
  #9
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by P. Ness View Post
It looks to be all PA drivers so honestly probably not. Say 200w into each would likely be quite loud.
Quote:
Originally Posted by RightOnRome View Post
sick! looks like they sound awesome .....but.....how much

Just watched the video posted above. Rep says 10kWatts total power and $70k for the pair
Old 14th January 2020
  #10
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eggsmack View Post
Quite loud if you're using an enclosure (like we are all used to). I would think it's going to take a lot of power to produce low mids on a system that has no baffle whatsoever. It seems like they're still needing an open enclosure to help with efficiency while producing low end.

The book I've read on speaker design only really concerned itself with the physics of enclosures. This design truly seems to be thinking outside the box
yeah but like look how much cone area you have in the mids, it's like a damn sheet of drywall in terms of surface area lol.

Definitely one of the wildest speakers I've seen, I'd love to hear them, but alas I am a nobody.
Old 15th January 2020
  #11
Gear Head
 

good luck @ NAMM
Old 16th January 2020
  #12
Gear Head
What an "amazing" interview. How did Sam keep a straight face? At the end he likened his product to crack!
Old 17th January 2020
  #13
Lives for gear
Cool to see something like this in a commercial product-

Very similar to my design (you can see it more in the right speaker)-

New commercial build in Denver

The one thing with this in a studio application is you need A LOT of absorbers behind the speakers to absorb the rear lobe.

On the other hand compared to MEG, Kii and D&D a single lobe of a fig8 is a much tighter pattern than cardioid and a closer match to the directivity of a 90 degree waveguide.

The rooms in the new studio are pretty small (230sf) and you can see in the mdat that other than some junk in the first ~2ms in the impulse that I need to hunt down, the early reflections are -30dB. This wouldn't be possible with direct radiating (omni) speakers...

Not a lot of watts needed for me from the TD15M's, although I don't boost the bass on them and cross in a sealed sub around 80hz where they roll off.
Old 17th January 2020
  #14
Gear Maniac
 
DigitalDrugLord's Avatar
I consulted the buyer of one of the first client installs of this system in the U.S. and I was impressed by the high-end performance when played back at even lower levels. Pairing it with a Grace M905 AES monitor system in the digital inputs is a great companion.
Old 23rd January 2020
  #15
First of all, a thousand thanks to everyone who came to our booth at NAMM! Seeing you and your reactions to our speakers in person is what drives us. Judging by the numerous positive reactions from the listeners, we're sure that our path is the right one and we will continue exploring further what an open baffle system can offer to discerning studio engineers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RyanC View Post
Cool to see something like this in a commercial product-

Very similar to my design (you can see it more in the right speaker)-

New commercial build in Denver

The one thing with this in a studio application is you need A LOT of absorbers behind the speakers to absorb the rear lobe.

On the other hand compared to MEG, Kii and D&D a single lobe of a fig8 is a much tighter pattern than cardioid and a closer match to the directivity of a 90 degree waveguide.

The rooms in the new studio are pretty small (230sf) and you can see in the mdat that other than some junk in the first ~2ms in the impulse that I need to hunt down, the early reflections are -30dB. This wouldn't be possible with direct radiating (omni) speakers...

Not a lot of watts needed for me from the TD15M's, although I don't boost the bass on them and cross in a sealed sub around 80hz where they roll off.
Congrats on the build! Your system indeed is similar to ours in that it uses open-baffle/baffleless loading to the loudspeakers. This, however, is where the differences end.

We are very much aware about the rear radiation issue and for our system it's been largely solved and none of the setups require heavy absorption behind the speakers. Just yesterday we finished an installation in a live room with glass behind the speakers. After 3 hours of work the back wave integrated nicely with the front and a very nicely behaved impulse response was achieved.

Our open baffle bass bin also throws a figure-of-8 pattern, making room integration easier as less room modes are excited. Of course, it takes two to four 18" long throw drivers with serious power to achieve that.

The top array on the Q1818 forms an almost 36" coax driver which allows for us to maintain a linear phase response (a must for a correct impulse) throughout a large listening area. Slight phase shift only occurs at sub-bass frequencies where it's inaudible.

I hope your explorations in acoustics takes you where you're looking to end up! It's an exciting journey and we have immense respect for everyone looking to go off the beaten path, rather than building just another box.

Rudi out!
Old 24th January 2020
  #16
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hrodulf View Post
Congrats on the build! Your system indeed is similar to ours in that it uses open-baffle/baffleless loading to the loudspeakers. This, however, is where the differences end.
Maybe... Looks like an SEOS Raal? I'm using auto-tech SEOS 24 with Radian 4" beryllium drivers...I'm also doing impulse response correction with ReFIR with latency as a preset (have a low latency preset as well similar to Kii etc). Similar design goals at least.

You clearly have more resources and experience and a very cool design here, I was only getting at the idea of the design family, it's really cool to see some aspects here in a well thought out commercial product. I ended up down this road because it measures and sounds as good as it does.

Would you consider posting some sort of case study with measurements etc? Before/after when you replace a system etc? It's very intriguing to me that you can integrate the rear lobe.
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