Recording - January 2013 - 29

Another question comes up relative to that swivel unit: Should the entire box itself be set up parallel or toed in? I experimented and found that the best sound comes from having the bass speakers parallel, not toed in, but the swivel units adjusted so as to face me at the appropriate “equilateral” angles. This could well have to do with the fact that when the speakers in the swivel unit are not on a parallel surface with the woofers, the edges don’t “bend” the sound as they tend to in fully rectangular boxes, even when the edges have been rounded. With the swivel unit dispersing the mids and highs at an angle, somehow the ears, mine at least, perceive a cleaner sound than when I align the swivel unit’s front with the bass element. I can’t swear to any empirical evidence since I’m not equipped to do test measurements, it’s just what I heard. These boxes could sit on a (hefty!) meter bridge, if that’s what you have in your studio; they weigh 36.5 lbs each and their footprint is 173/4" (wide) x 131/4" (deep). The height is 121/4". If you can seat them on separate stands, possibly aided by antivibrational devices, you most likely get even better results if that stand positioning means that you have to put up with fewer surface reflections in front of you. About that equilateral triangle: It certainly is the correct formula for perceiving the best imaging and other finer points, but it can get tiresome to glue oneself into that one position. The HG3 has fairly generous dispersion of mids and highs, but for the critical listening you still need to be right in the sweet spot. Now with most two-way systems, as you leave that sweet spot, if only to stretch your legs or straighten your back for a while, the first thing you lose is the critical highs. Not so with the HG3—simply adjust the angle of the swivel units and you still get most of those highs coming straight at

Get your best bass and grand piano samples, sequence a scale from way down there up past middle C, at equal velocity values, and see if you find any bumps, dips, booms—I didn’t. But that’s not music, so back to listening to a few greats, like John Clayton on a fabulous AIX disc of Steve Huffsteter’s big band, and—for good measure, a digital recording of Bach’s Toccata in D Minor. There is some heavenly rumble going on in that Toccata, but it sounds clean and clear, unless your recording has too much cathedral ambience. My conclusion: If ported bass cabs go against your belief system, maybe this one will convince you that there is merit on the other side of the aisle? A bit further up we come to the mud range, but there is no mud here. Even mixes that sound doubtful on lesser speakers are being treated more kindly by the HG3, bringing out exceptional clarity and detail, which makes me think that cross-checking your mixes from the HG3s, should you spring for them, will be even more important than ever. Just because you heard everything just fine on the HG3s doesn’t mean others will do the same on their systems, even if they are quite respectable. Voices project well; I’m tempted to say “they stand out” to my ears by a dB or so. No trace of an audible crossover, on voices or anything else. That could be because the crossover is set way lower than is often the case, at 320 Hz. I was delighted to hear no shrillness on a fabulous recording that often suffers that fate on playback, Berg’s “Lulu” (Boulez, DGG)—even in the densest and most delightfully hysterical passages the voices remained balanced rather than shrieky. High strings, high winds, triangles and bells were crystal clear, I couldn’t discern the 3.5 kHz crossover range on any material.

An unusual approach to driver design leads to a fascinating new monitor
you. The only problem— as you roll your chair back, your arms aren’t long enough to do the adjusting of the swivel. Don’t laugh, at times I was wishing for a remote control. Well, okay, laugh, until you’re in the same situation... Maybe a rubbertipped stick would do it? The sound This is where your money really goes, right? And we’re talking serious change here, way more than what most speakers cost that we have written up in these pages for consideration by individual recording musicians. So maybe it’s not a case of apples and oranges but apples and, ahem, pumpkins (sorry, it’s the season...)? Well, these pumpkins are mighty tasty. Let’s start at the bottom. Once you have the likes of Ray Brown, Victor Wooten, Marcus Miller (“Infatuation” off the album Tales, with a huge kick drum under his bass...), and Christian McBride coming through the HG3s, you realize why Trident calls the bass speaker the subwoofer and devotes two power amps to it. I don’t know how the two amps share the task, but the fruits of their labor are marvelous. I’ve never been fond of a freestanding subwoofer in a critical nearfield monitoring situation, its output just doesn’t ever seem to gel with that of the nearfields. But with all that tight and deep and balanced bass coming right from in front of you, there is no lack of cohesiveness within the entire spectrum you’re hearing—the bass simply “belongs”. We always talk about bass being non-directional. Can you call bass “focused?“ This one sounds focused. Brass bites when it is supposed to bite—for a moment, turn the front controls to their minimum settings and experience what a “smiley” curve on pretty-sounding speakers is like by comparison. Quite educational... Suffice to say that with that kind of fidelity, drums, pianos, guitars and other wide-spectrum instruments sounded just great throughout their entire ranges, especially since I couldn’t detect any fault with transients and abrupt changes in dynamics. No doubt the HG3s can remain distortion-free far beyond what I would consider reasonable listening levels, especially when used in a nearfield setup. I’m quite happy at 85 dB, but those who like it hotter will not be disappointed. What is even more impressive is the fullness and accuracy that the HG3s provide at low listening levels. Messrs. Fletcher and Munson, can you explain that? All in all To this listener, having the HG3s for a few weeks was a most enjoyable luxury. It helped to re-calibrate my ears and put certain things in perspective. Some very familiar music revealed new and exciting details while coming from the HG3s, and I’ll be sorry to see them go back. Price: $3999.99/pair More from: Trident Audio Developments, www.tridentaudio.com; dist. by PMI Audio Group, www.pmiaudio.com
RECORDING January 2013

29


http://www.trident-audio.com http://www.trident-audio.com http://www.pmiaudio.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Recording - January 2013

Recording - January 2013
Fade In.
Table of Contents
Talkback.
2012 AES Convention Report.
Universal Audio Apollo.
ADAM Audio F5 and F7 Monitors.
Earthworks ZDT 1022 Mic Preamp.
Trident HG3 Close Field Monitoring System.
AKG K702 65th Anniversary Edition Headphones.
Grace Design m903 Reference Headphone Amplifier.
Monitors & Monitoring.
Lauten Atlantis FC-387 Condenser Microphone.
Recording Fundamentals. Chapter 13: Monitors Part 2.
PreSonus BlueTube DP V2.
Getting Into Your Head.
Shure SE215 Sound Isolating Earphones.
Readers’ Tapes.
iOS Music Tools: Last-Minute Audio Gifts!
Sennheiser HD800 Headphones.
Advertiser Index.
2012 Annual Index.
Fade Out.
Recording - January 2013 - Recording - January 2013
Recording - January 2013 - Cover2
Recording - January 2013 - 1
Recording - January 2013 - 2
Recording - January 2013 - 3
Recording - January 2013 - Fade In.
Recording - January 2013 - 5
Recording - January 2013 - Table of Contents
Recording - January 2013 - 7
Recording - January 2013 - Talkback.
Recording - January 2013 - 9
Recording - January 2013 - 2012 AES Convention Report.
Recording - January 2013 - 11
Recording - January 2013 - 12
Recording - January 2013 - 13
Recording - January 2013 - 14
Recording - January 2013 - 15
Recording - January 2013 - 16
Recording - January 2013 - 17
Recording - January 2013 - 18
Recording - January 2013 - 19
Recording - January 2013 - Universal Audio Apollo.
Recording - January 2013 - 21
Recording - January 2013 - 22
Recording - January 2013 - 23
Recording - January 2013 - ADAM Audio F5 and F7 Monitors.
Recording - January 2013 - 25
Recording - January 2013 - Earthworks ZDT 1022 Mic Preamp.
Recording - January 2013 - 27
Recording - January 2013 - Trident HG3 Close Field Monitoring System.
Recording - January 2013 - 29
Recording - January 2013 - AKG K702 65th Anniversary Edition Headphones.
Recording - January 2013 - 31
Recording - January 2013 - 32
Recording - January 2013 - 33
Recording - January 2013 - Grace Design m903 Reference Headphone Amplifier.
Recording - January 2013 - 35
Recording - January 2013 - Monitors & Monitoring.
Recording - January 2013 - 37
Recording - January 2013 - 38
Recording - January 2013 - 39
Recording - January 2013 - Lauten Atlantis FC-387 Condenser Microphone.
Recording - January 2013 - 41
Recording - January 2013 - Recording Fundamentals. Chapter 13: Monitors Part 2.
Recording - January 2013 - 43
Recording - January 2013 - PreSonus BlueTube DP V2.
Recording - January 2013 - 45
Recording - January 2013 - Getting Into Your Head.
Recording - January 2013 - 47
Recording - January 2013 - 48
Recording - January 2013 - 49
Recording - January 2013 - Shure SE215 Sound Isolating Earphones.
Recording - January 2013 - 51
Recording - January 2013 - 52
Recording - January 2013 - 53
Recording - January 2013 - 54
Recording - January 2013 - 55
Recording - January 2013 - Readers’ Tapes.
Recording - January 2013 - 57
Recording - January 2013 - iOS Music Tools: Last-Minute Audio Gifts!
Recording - January 2013 - 59
Recording - January 2013 - 60
Recording - January 2013 - 61
Recording - January 2013 - Sennheiser HD800 Headphones.
Recording - January 2013 - Advertiser Index.
Recording - January 2013 - 64
Recording - January 2013 - 65
Recording - January 2013 - 66
Recording - January 2013 - 67
Recording - January 2013 - 68
Recording - January 2013 - 69
Recording - January 2013 - 2012 Annual Index.
Recording - January 2013 - 71
Recording - January 2013 - Fade Out.
Recording - January 2013 - Cover3
Recording - January 2013 - Cover4
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