Are the B&W Nautilus speakers the flattest in the world?

October 21, 2018
 by Paul McGowan

5 comments on “Are the B&W Nautilus speakers the flattest in the world?”

  1. Paul,

    I can hazard a pretty good guess as to why Arnie would implement a 800 – 1,500 Hz dip in his designs, as I have heard any number of speakers that would benefit from such a design feature, but can you provide us with some more insight into his reasoning?

  2. Hi Paul, I just checked out the Fletcher and Munson Equal-Loudness Contour Chart and can see what Arnie might have been aiming for, however there seems to be more of a problem at around 3,500 Hz., (considered the resonant frequency of the inner ear), that needs to be dipped maybe 6 Db. So according to F&M’s hearing chart, speakers that are perfectly flat will certainly sound awful.

  3. Not all B&W speakers are ruler flat but like most hi fi speakers linearity is what they are after without doing so much in the crossover region to destroy the musicality of the speaker. I own many speakers my favorites being my NHT 2.9 followed by Celestion SL-6Si and a few different sets of mini NHT, PSB, and B&W speakers. Velodyne 18″ sub, a few 12″ Sunfire subs by Carver and PSB Subs. I also have EPI speakers from the late 70’s designed by Winslow Burhoe. I love the sound of the EPI’s. They have that New England sound. The Woofers and tweeters are so closely matched that only a simple capacitor that removes bass from getting into the tweeter is needed at 6db per octave. The natural roll off of the woofer and tweeter meet perfectly at around 1800hz. There’s just a naturalness to speakers designed like this that make them pleasant to listen to for hours without listeners fatigue setting in. All of the speakers I own have their own character as amplifiers do and I love them all for what they do differently. My amps are Adcom, B&K, Proton, and Creek. That Creek is pure magic. Also a Technics SA 800 Receiver built in 79. Technics won the receiver war back then with a 330 wpc Monster receiver the SA 1000. There’s something great about those Receivers built in 79. My first hi fi stereo was a Technics SA 500 with EPI 180 speakers. A Luxman T-117 tuner that got a class A ranking in Stereophile. All of my gear got rave reviews. I’m very interested in adding a PS Audio amp to my collection. I would love to visit PS Audio someday and hear those infinities in music room one. As far as B&W I like their bookshelf two ways and the matrix cabinets with kevlar midrange bass drivers. They are very musical speakers and well designed. You have to live with them awhile to love what they do well. Very revealing speakers. Owning just one piece of audio Equipment would be like a wine lover owning just one bottle of wine. It’s really fun to own and listen to many.

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