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Thread: Sierra-2 Development Thread

  1. #11
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    Nov 2011
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    Default Re: Sierra-1 NrT: Next phase?

    First off, props to Dave for considering and actually working on suggestions from customers.

    In my opinion, the towers are a no-brainer with either the NrT or RAAL option. You get the luscious mids and highs in an optimal 3-way design.

    However, there are customers who cannot fit a tower into their listening environment. I am one of those customers. A Sierra-1 with RAAL would cater to a niche group including, but not limited to:

    - those with no space for full towers
    - those who prefer two-way bookshelf designs
    - those who prefer high-quality sound in a discrete enclosure

    However, I think the lack of upgrade path from Sierra-1 to Sierra/RAAL may cause some folks to back down because of the additional investment. I figured it would be extremely difficult to retool an existing S-1 cabinet for a RAAL upgrade.

    One thought I had: a "trade up" program might be attractive for those who already own S-1, but I have no idea how much that would affect Ascend's ROI or resale objectives. There would be a lot of B-Stock going this route, and it will impact Ascend's current inventory turnover.

    I do have a soft spot for quality bookshelf monitors. I will definitely stay tuned.


    EDIT: Oh, I forgot to mention names. My thought was Sierra-1R. Simple, but descriptive.
    Last edited by Dark Ranger; 04-18-2012 at 07:21 PM. Reason: Added suggested name
    -Jacob

  2. #12
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    Mar 2004
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    Default Re: Sierra-1 NrT: Next phase?

    Glad to hear there is experimentation with this concept!
    The difference in cost vs. The NrT towers would be the tough choice.
    That would be dependent on each persons situation. Having the room for the monitors but not towers..........RAAL vs NrT.......etc.
    Space for large speakers is not an issue for me, but cost is. If I could manage $2000 for the towers I'd be sticking with the excellent NrT tweeter. If I wanted the goodness of the ribbon combined with a little better midrange over the Sierra-1 NrT then a Sierra-1R(ribbon) crossed over to my 12" Rythmik would fill the bill.
    Tough decision.
    Ed

  3. #13
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    Default Re: Sierra-1 NrT: Next phase?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mag_Neato View Post
    Glad to hear there is experimentation with this concept!
    The difference in cost vs. The NrT towers would be the tough choice.
    That would be dependent on each persons situation. Having the room for the monitors but not towers..........RAAL vs NrT.......etc.
    Space for large speakers is not an issue for me, but cost is. If I could manage $2000 for the towers I'd be sticking with the excellent NrT tweeter. If I wanted the goodness of the ribbon combined with a little better midrange over the Sierra-1 NrT then a Sierra-1R(ribbon) crossed over to my 12" Rythmik would fill the bill.
    Tough decision.
    I was thinking more about this today.

    Dave already has a NrT upgrade kit available for stock Sierras. This takes the original design with excellent sound and refines it in several ways. The great thing about the NrT upgrade is that it does not require reengineering the cabinet, and the kit can be installed by the user. However, nearly everything changes with the RAAL upgrade: new cabinet design, new crossover, new tweeter, etc. It is NOT a drop-in replacement kit.

    As far as sound quality, I recall that the NrT and RAAL share similar voicing, although the custom RT for Ascend does provide several key advantages over the excellent NrT.

    OK, here's my point: the Sierra-1 with RAAL could be attractive for new customers who want a bookshelf monitor, but desire higher-quality sound than either stock or NrT versions provide. However, for customers who already own Sierra-1 systems, the RAAL upgrade would be harder to justify in my opinion, and it still would not offer as much detail as the full Tower system.

    On the other hand, Ascend could offer this "exceptional" bookshelf monitor that would be among the very best two-ways at almost any price point.

    Decisions, decisions!

    Honestly, I would be extremely interested in seeing measurement data comparing the prototype Sierra-1R (had to plug my suggested name) with the existing stock/NrT versions. Of course, a listening session would be great, but since I'm on the East Coast, I'll have to leave it to others.


    Just a few thoughts on this Thursday morning.
    -Jacob

  4. #14
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    Mar 2005
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    Milwaukee, WI
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    Default Re: Sierra-1 NrT: Next phase?

    Dave,
    My thoughts are divided as well. Its tough to justify $1800 for a RAAL bookshelf when the NrT towers with a dedicated mid driver are the same price. On the other hand, if the RAAL bookshelf has an improved mid range presence because of the lower XO point over and above the Nrt sierra-1, then it might be a interesting proposition.

    I suppose if someone is after the best tweeter (highs) in a bookshelf, it would be tough to beat.

    I suggest letting some folks hear the prototype(if possible) and gauage the feedback. I of course would not mind demoing a pair Had to throw that out!

    Just out of pure curiosity while we are on this subject, if there was a possibility to improve upon the Towers (with RAAL) such as better drivers, different cabinet design, etc, what would you do?

    Thanks,
    Brandon

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
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    234

    Default Re: Sierra-1 NrT: Next phase?

    I have seen a few vendors selling 2 way bookshelf for approx 3.5k with same RAAL tweeter. AS someone mentioned, it's a good option for those who have space constraints or for anyone who's interesting in timbre matching their RAAL front stage with RAAL surrounds.
    SO,I think there will be a market for this product however, it might be smaller/niche market compared to other Ascend offerings. But, at least the consumers/buyers will have options :-)

  6. #16
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    Default Re: Sierra-1 NrT: Next phase?

    Quote Originally Posted by merrymaid520 View Post
    Dave,
    My thoughts are divided as well. Its tough to justify $1800 for a RAAL bookshelf when the NrT towers with a dedicated mid driver are the same price. On the other hand, if the RAAL bookshelf has an improved mid range presence because of the lower XO point over and above the Nrt sierra-1, then it might be a interesting proposition.

    I suppose if someone is after the best tweeter (highs) in a bookshelf, it would be tough to beat.

    I suggest letting some folks hear the prototype(if possible) and gauage the feedback. I of course would not mind demoing a pair Had to throw that out!

    Just out of pure curiosity while we are on this subject, if there was a possibility to improve upon the Towers (with RAAL) such as better drivers, different cabinet design, etc, what would you do?

    Thanks,
    Brandon
    Now wait just a minute!! Brandon, Dave made the Towers specifically for YOU, so being the one whom started this here thread, the prototype should be sent to ME!!
    Ed

  7. #17
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    Default Re: Sierra-1 NrT: Next phase?

    Dave...the one thing that has really stood out for me since last hearing the Tower w/RAALs is the Dean Peer track "Lord's Tundra". That track has been on my list of tracks when listening to speakers for a long time, along with Ray Montford's "One Witness".

    I love (loved?) the way it sounding on my Sierra-1's with the Rythmik, but on the Towers, the sound was much more defined. I am guessing that it is mostly because of the dedicated midrange.

    How would you characterize it on the "Sierra-1R" (I concede to Jacob)?
    -curtis

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Posts
    17

    Default Re: Sierra-1 NrT: Next phase?

    This is a very interesting conundrum! I do feel like there would be a market for it but I don't feel it would be as big as your other offerings. I'd agree with others that it would be more of a niche offering for those who 1) can't fit a tower, 2) prefers bookshelves, 3) prefers ribbon tweeters, 4) budget constraints, and 5) want a smaller option to the STC with matching ribbon.

    If a ribbon tweeter bookshelf was an option when I purchased my tower, I have a feeling that I would have had a very hard time deciding between the two.

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    5

    Default Re: Sierra-1 NrT: Next phase?

    What about a totally different animal; say a Seas 7" Excel Magnesium mated with the 70-20xr RAAL? This would be a bigger, more powerful monitor than the Sierra 1; a Sierra on steroids, so to speak, that would compete with the Joseph Audio Pulsars of the world (a Sierra 2?). I'm one of those who prefers a Monitor over a Tower; the well designed 2-way Monitors do so many things right; they give you point source sound, incredible imaging, and disappear with good recordings.
    Or, apparently Dave has some expertise with amplifiers; a powered 2-way monitor would be interesting. Doing the crossover at line level, and tailoring the amp to the specific drivers gives you much better performance than a passive design. Just a thought--

    pawsman
    Last edited by pawsman; 04-19-2012 at 03:50 PM.

  10. #20

    Default Re: Sierra-1 NrT: Next phase?

    Hello From New Hampshire

    Iím a newbie to the forum. I don't know if this can be done, however a possible idea to keep everyone happy would be to have a crossover change switch on the back of speaker. This would have a selectable option for a crossover change that would allow less bottom & more middle for those that want it. It would also require a new circuit board.

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