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Old 12th October 2011, 06:29 AM   #1
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Default CSS EL70 & CHP-70 Comparison

Hello full-rangers,

David from Planet 10 was kind enough to offer me a chance to listen to and compare the CSS EL70 and Mark Audio CHP-70 in Planet 10 mMar-Kel70 enclosures. In lieu of measurements or a technical comparison of the drivers that I am not well versed enough to give I will stick with a short subjective review. The speakers were powered by a Dayton DTA2 T-amp being fed by my AirPort Express.

I casually used both speakers for a few days just getting a feel for how they sounded in my living room. Both speakers were very pleasant to listen to, no remarkable bad habits. Once I set some time aside to do a side by side and listen to the same song on each speaker consecutively the difference could be heard. The EL70 did a better job on almost every track I played. I tried to pick music that I thought had a clear and honest quality, Diana Krall's Girl In The Other Room for example. In this small enclosure the EL70 manages to produce a very effortless sound. The CHP-70 sounds held back or dampened in some way. Perhaps a larger enclosure would suite it better?

If you have been to David's and heard the EL70 in the milliSized mMar-Kel and then in the primeSize Mar-Kel box the step up in sound quality is similar to what I experienced between these two drivers; a larger and more involving sound.

Fun stuff!
Kyle

Late addition: David swapped the CHP with an eNabled set of EL70s for another comparison. I didn't detect a huge difference between the enabled and plain drivers. Perhaps my source material didn't hit the notes that the process hoped to tame/enhance. Maybe the difference could be heard more in the primeSized enclosure with the driver able to do more work? My amp and compressed material are not the best possible source for these speakers either.
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Old 12th October 2011, 02:23 PM   #2
zman01 is offline zman01  Bangladesh
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Kyle,

Are the drivers broken in? Can you try some rock music and let us know which one works better, especially of thinner recordings?

-Zia
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Old 12th October 2011, 05:40 PM   #3
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Hi Zia,

As far as I know they were broken in, David could comment further on that.

There was less difference between the drivers with some older rock that I played. I have given the CHP-70's back to David so I can't do more extensive testing.

KM
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Old 12th October 2011, 06:35 PM   #4
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The drivers are broken in.

dave
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Old 12th October 2011, 07:49 PM   #5
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Sounds like the CHP performs pretty much as designed by Mark: older recordings will come off better than newer for the most part. I bet Sinatra sounds killer on them.
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Old 12th October 2011, 08:10 PM   #6
zman01 is offline zman01  Bangladesh
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Wushuliu,

Sinatra should sound great anywhere, right?

OT - how are your Alp 12 bass reflex boxes playing?
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Old 12th October 2011, 08:30 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zman01 View Post
Wushuliu,

Sinatra should sound great anywhere, right?

OT - how are your Alp 12 bass reflex boxes playing?
I sold the A12 drivers a long while ago. They were too large for my small listening space. Now I alternate between dual EL70s and A6Ps crossed to 8" woofers with Minidsp. The A12s were great for movies, though. Wow.
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Old 13th October 2011, 07:27 PM   #8
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Kyle, great feedback. I also got the same speakers for review a while ago (enabled and non). The EL70s are just plain awesome. I can't praise them enough. Most people on other forums just ignore me when I do though. Their loss

Did I hear right that EL70s are being discontinued?
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Old 13th October 2011, 07:34 PM   #9
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I can't wait to build a box for my set. I don't know if they are being discontinued. I suppose it's going to be tough to keep something like that in production forever. Who knows, maybe there's an EL70 mk2 in the works?

KM
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Old 13th October 2011, 08:09 PM   #10
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Re discontinuation: Bob has said he will not be re-ordering. He had just over 200 units when i last checked, i have about 60, and there are units in Australia (Darcher), and at least a couple places in Europe, so they should be around for a bit... if you want spares don't lolly gag thou.

And if someone wants to step up to the plate, Mark would be happy to make a version using generation 3 tech (or better). I'd love to but it takes more scratch than i have to fund the minimum order. With sufficent feedback it might be possible to have this driver as the next generation CHP.

dave
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