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Old 22nd March 2013, 10:13 PM   #21
chrisb is offline chrisb  Canada
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Quote:
Originally Posted by howardg View Post
Jim, I have looked at the fe103. My recent interest in the FF series was prompted by positive comments from a friend at our club who was sharing his older (discontinued) ENABLED FE127s in nice looking resistive-slot ported bamboo cabinets.
these, perhaps?

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Quote:

He felt the FF series to be a step up from the older FE line. But I am curious about the FE103. I also have been looking at the higher priced full ranges from CSS(still reasonable) and the MARKAUDIO line(though I think I would tend to use these for something other than an expensive midrange). Part of the fun of this stuff is making something nice for little money. The 14 3 way ended up with a crossover that rivaled the price of the drivers-the drivers being old.
From the 3 models I've heard, it's hard not to concur with the assessment (Bud's?) that the WK series is an improvement over the prior FE series. The previous FF85K was a bit of a giant-killer, but I like the the new 85WK even more - it makes for a wonderful mid/tweet in a "FAST" type systems, or alone in a nearfield / desktop - I have a pair both at home and work, powered by Topping TP30 amps.
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Old 22nd March 2013, 11:41 PM   #22
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Hi rjbond3rd,

You are correct. I have multiple Mets: FE108eS, F120A, FE167e, FF85k bipole, and just at the moment, the FE103en are in the Mets built for the FE108eS.

Some of my scattered thoughts about them:
-- all of the Mets with Fostex drivers have a way of extracting the ambience from recordings which I like; other speakers which I have enjoyed in the past sound a bit flat and one dimensional by comparison; don’t know if it’s just the Fostex drivers or if the Met design helps with this; the FE127e Fonkens Prime also do well in this regard, so perhaps it has something to do with baffle width/shape in addition to the Fostex family characteristics.
-- the 108s are lively and engaging; they seem to disappear and the music just fills the room; I think they produce good sound stage and imaging; they begin to struggle on large scale orchestral works at anything more than modest volume; the need support from a sub if there is significant low freq content.
-- the 103s are similar, except that they are smoother than the 108s; I don’t know how to explain it, but they are different from the 108s; not better or worse: similar but different; they are a bit less ‘in your face’ than the 108s, while still delivering a great sonic image with small groups; they have the same need for low end support as the 108s.
-- the F120A, when driven by tubes, is superior to either the 103 or 108; it has just enough low end grunt that I am satisfied to use them without a sub; smoother than the 108; more like the 103 but bigger, more capable of presenting larger scale works at a bit more volume; they are less ‘in your face’ than the 108’; the sonic presentation is a bit more laid back than the 103 too, as if you were sitting a few seats back further than with the 103; I could live with these as my only speakers... if I had to. (but why would I do that?)
-- the FE167e digs deeper and does better yet on larger works, although it still won’t produce large scale orchestral material at high SPLs; the 167 is rougher in the highs than the 108, but is a good compromise between articulation, bass extension, and ability to present more complex material; a little more ‘in your face’ than the 103.
-- the FF85k bipole Mets are smoother and brighter than the 108s; they only reach down to 80 Hz, so I wouldn’t think of using them without a sub; they have the interesting spacial qualities of bipole/dipole speakers; As with the F120As, I think I could live with these as my only speakers if I had to, but I would put a high pass filter on them to prevent low freqs from stressing them.

Cheers, Jim
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Old 23rd March 2013, 12:38 AM   #23
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Jim try TB W5 with polypropilene cone, I think you are going to be surprised
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Old 23rd March 2013, 01:17 AM   #24
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Thank you, Jim. Those impressions are really similar to my own. For years, I listened to models with problematic treble, but I'll never go back after living with the smoother, flatter models.

The one thing people comment on with the 103 is the spooky realism. On soundtracks, for example, people say, "Answer the door, didn't you hear the doorbell?" and it's merely on the soundtrack. Also, the 103's seem to be able to "float" images more readily than some other models.

Thank you again for your thorough (and accurate!) insights.
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Old 23rd March 2013, 09:24 PM   #25
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Dynablasterstuners,
I rather doubt I would like the poly cone of the TB W5. At least my experience so far is that I am more of a paper cone guy.

rjbond3rd,
You are most welcome! I don't know how to express all the things I hear in the different drivers. (probably would be writing reviews if I could) I think we definitely agree that there is something special about the FE103.

Cheers, Jim
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Old 24th March 2013, 02:13 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by Jim Shearer View Post
Dynablasterstuners,
I rather doubt I would like the poly cone of the TB W5. At least my experience so far is that I am more of a paper cone guy.

rjbond3rd,
You are most welcome! I don't know how to express all the things I hear in the different drivers. (probably would be writing reviews if I could) I think we definitely agree that there is something special about the FE103.

Cheers, Jim
There may be something special about the FE103 but it might be unwise to overlook it's overlooked 4" brother FF105WK; could be more special yet in the right cabinet.
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Old 24th March 2013, 02:20 AM   #27
chrisb is offline chrisb  Canada
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Originally Posted by ssportclay View Post
There may be something special about the FE103 but it might be unwise to overlook it's overlooked 4" brother FF105WK; could be more special yet in the right cabinet.

Dave - any further listening impressions of the 105WKs in Vampyrs?
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Old 24th March 2013, 02:35 AM   #28
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FF105wk is nice

dave
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Old 24th March 2013, 04:59 AM   #29
howardg is offline howardg  United States
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Default FE103 vs FE126 below 4500hz

Hi Chrisb---- yes, Bud brought the bamboo/fe127 speakers like the ones in your photo(same ones?). He did give credit to the builder, but I don't remember who it is. I must say by that point in the meeting there was enough chatter from the peanut gallery(sorry peanuts) that it was hard to have a serious listen. I did previously hear them when Bud did an A-B comparison with a non-ENABLED pair at a PNWAS meeting a couple years back. It was an interesting exercise for me at the time, because after 30 mins I was hearing a quite noticeable difference, whereas in the beginning I was hard pressed to hear the difference. I am not sure what to attribute the difference in perception to. At the time I was mostly listening to untreated FE126's at home.



ON THE FOSTEX FE DRIVERS: Adjusting for the efficiency, and keeping volume moderate, would a FE103 sound much different in my existing 3way, described in this thread, than the FE 126e's that are already installed there? The upper crossover is second order at around 4500hz.I ask this by way of trying to tease out where the differences lie in the drivers for a future build, probably a woofer and a mid/tweet 2-way, not to change out the drivers in the existing.
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Old 24th March 2013, 04:43 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by planet10 View Post
FF105wk is nice

dave
The canine in the photo appears to find them very soothing.
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