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Thread: ESL 57s will be added to my system soon. What to expect?

  1. #1
    Join Date: Aug 2014

    Location: Aarhus, Denmark

    Posts: 67
    I'm Peter.

    Default ESL 57s will be added to my system soon. What to expect?

    I will soon have some Quad ESL 57 speakers in my small study where they will be used in a way not unlike stereo headphones. They will (1) either be elevated and slanted downwards to my listeing position or (2) "bolted to the wall" (perhaps on some TV mounting thingees).They will replace a set of 47 laboratory 4722 Lens speakers that I have been very happy with. But the temptation to get myself a pair of Quad ESL 57s for my system was too big.

    The rest of my set-up in my main listening rig is:
    EAR 912 pre
    Amcron D150 Series 2 SS amp (due for repair as it distorts heavily after only one month in my room) ---> much later I supose that I will have finished my FirstWatt F4 build or have bought myself an EAR power amp.
    Amazon Audio Reference with Morch UP-4 unipivot arm and Benz Micro Gullwing SLR
    B&O Beocord 6500 Cassette Deck
    Audio Note CDT Zero Transport + Audio Note Dac 3 1x (old style).

    I hope the ESL 57s wil be to my liking. What can I expect from the ESL 57s that Magnepan MC1s (Wall mounted speakers) or Magnepan 1.7 speakers did not get me?
    I have had both in my tiny room - with an entirely different set-up, however.

  2. #2
    Join Date: Jan 2009

    Location: Essex

    Posts: 17,632
    I'm openingabottleofwine.

    Default

    Well done on your new acquisition Peter.

    I'm a big fan of the Quad 57s - I've used no other for the last forty-five years. They are not perfect and have some serious shortcomings, but I can forgive (or put up with) them for the aspects of sound reproduction which they do do well and which are important to me.

    However you will not get the best out of them if you hang them on a wall. Having a dipole radiation pattern, they need at least a metre of clear space behind them. And you need to position the speakers so the centre strip tweeter 'fires' directly towards you.

    Some users say the Quads are fussy or difficult to drive, but most modern SS amps will drive them well and virtually all valve amplifiers (both modern and vintage) will do the same. I have had success with the Quad valve units; Quad 303; Quad 405 (-2, or if -1, modified by replacing the input op-amp); Quad 510 monoblocks, Electrocompaniet "The Two Channel Amplifier"; Mark Levinson ML-2 monoblocks, and the valve Radford STA15 Mk.III.

    Expect clear, neutral, natural reproduction, free from cabinet colouration; more than adequate frequency response; superb soundstaging and focus, and excellent transient response free from overhang. They can't be played loud so are a bit limited in their portrayal of dynamics, nor do they have subterranean bass.
    Have you listened to this month's choice in the Album Club?

    Barry

  3. #3
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Forest of Dean, Glos

    Posts: 9,955
    I'm Jerry.

    Default

    Based on my experience, don't necessarily dismiss the idea of wall mounting.
    I agree that it would seem to be far from ideal for dipoles - but I once visited someone with Quad 63 speakers mounted actually in specially made wall recesses the same size as the speakers with their fronts flush to the wall. I thought to myself "that is going to sound awful" but actually the sound was very good. I have no idea why or how, but it worked fine.
    Certainly worth a try with your 57s.
    Jerry

    Qobuz Hifi / Spotify Premium streaming, SMSL M8 DAC + L-PSU, Herron VTSP-2 valve preamp, Trigon TRE 50 monoblocks, MBL 116F.

    Cables: Wireworld Starlight USB, Ixos Ixotica i/c, W&M speaker cables, Belden 19364 mains cables

  4. #4
    Join Date: Aug 2014

    Location: Aarhus, Denmark

    Posts: 67
    I'm Peter.

    Default

    Thanks.

    I have heard that they should be able to be used mounted on a wall. However, I wonder how this could be done. I am going to make room for them on either side of a window where they will span each their own corner slanted in towards my seat in front of a desk. I wonder if they could be mounted on TV mounts like this one: https://www.harald-nyborg.dk/p3685/v...pa13-484c-sort

    If not I will place them on top of bookshelves leaning in on me.

    Here's a photo of wall-mounted ones: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1WEP...ew?usp=sharing

  5. #5
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Forest of Dean, Glos

    Posts: 9,955
    I'm Jerry.

    Default

    Here are the Quads of AOS's very own Alan / Firebottle

    Jerry

    Qobuz Hifi / Spotify Premium streaming, SMSL M8 DAC + L-PSU, Herron VTSP-2 valve preamp, Trigon TRE 50 monoblocks, MBL 116F.

    Cables: Wireworld Starlight USB, Ixos Ixotica i/c, W&M speaker cables, Belden 19364 mains cables

  6. #6
    Join Date: Aug 2014

    Location: Aarhus, Denmark

    Posts: 67
    I'm Peter.

    Default

    How have they been "anchored" there? I see some wire going to the ceiling, but how have they been mounted on the wall?

    Nice to see that it can be done. Mine will be mounted in a similar way but angled in more.

  7. #7
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Forest of Dean, Glos

    Posts: 9,955
    I'm Jerry.

    Default

    They's just a hangin' by those wires!

    Not heard the setup myself, but is reliably said to be very good indeed.
    Jerry

    Qobuz Hifi / Spotify Premium streaming, SMSL M8 DAC + L-PSU, Herron VTSP-2 valve preamp, Trigon TRE 50 monoblocks, MBL 116F.

    Cables: Wireworld Starlight USB, Ixos Ixotica i/c, W&M speaker cables, Belden 19364 mains cables

  8. #8
    Join Date: Feb 2011

    Location: glasgow

    Posts: 2,194
    I'm tony.

    Default

    I agree with everything so far mentioned. I would be having a look at one thing audio. You really want to put a protection circuit in them and the widget seems to make a nice but very incremental improvement with my SS amp.

    Im now running supertweeters velcroed on the rear firing vertically- works very well IMHO.

    You will adore them if you want a headphone like sound.

  9. #9
    Join Date: Feb 2011

    Location: glasgow

    Posts: 2,194
    I'm tony.

    Default

    Forgot to mention raise them up off the floor-ota do sell rupert stand but try a pair of chairs first.

  10. #10
    Join Date: Aug 2014

    Location: Aarhus, Denmark

    Posts: 67
    I'm Peter.

    Default

    I Think mine would be placed with a similar distance between them as Alan's but "toed" in more towards my listening spot. As for widgets , I don't know if mine will come with them.

    I would like to see a shot of how Alan has attached the wires to the backsides of the ESL 57s, so I can replicate that. I have a wood ceiling which would make it fairly easy to screw wire hooks on. I just have to make sure that the Weight of the ESLs doesn't make ceiling fall down.
    Last edited by Rosewind; 30-11-2017 at 12:03. Reason: Splelling

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