Tannoy Gold Reference Upgrade

Tannoy has upgraded five models to new ‘Gold Reference’ standard, starting with the compact Tannoy Stirling Gold Reference. At the top of the Gold Reference Series are the Canterbury Reference Gold and the Westminster Royal Gold Reference [pictured above], both of which have 381mm diameter dual-concentric coaxial drivers with a newly-developed cone material. ‘To increase rigidity across the larger surface area of these 15-inch dual concentric drivers, the fibrous mix within the cone material has been revised to realise further improvements in the cone’s mechanical characteristics,’ saidDr Paul Mills, Head of Product Research at Tannoy. ‘Modern imaging technology affords incredibly detailed analysis of cone mechanics under load and many versions of the cone pulp mix were evaluated prior to the final selection of this vital component. The final selection of material was the result of critical auditioning with a wide range of music, and both the Canterbury GR and Westminster Royal GR models now offer an even more dynamic presentation than their predecessors, with reduced colouration and an incredibly natural mid-band response.’

All the new Prestige Gold Reference models also use a new Alnico-powered high-frequency compression driver and ‘Pepperpot’ waveguide whose design was a direct result of research undertaken for Tannoy’s Kingdom Royal project. ‘Many months of R&D were spent testing and auditioning numerous alloys and heat treatment configurations before final selection of a heat-tempered aluminium alloy,’ Mills told Australian Hi-Fi Magazine. ‘The domes are terminated with a vented Mylar surround, which affords better energy termination at the diaphragm boundary. The result is even greater transparency and linearity across the driver’s working spectrum, delivering an even more refined and natural sound than previous Prestige Duals.

Internally, all Prestige crossovers have been improved across the range with ICW ClarityCap MR capacitors used in the Westminster Royal, Canterbury and Kensington GR models. Low-loss laminated-core inductors and thick film resistors are used throughout the Prestige GR series crossovers and each fully-assembled Prestige GR crossover is Deep Cryogenically Treated (DCT) as a single unit, which Tannoy says improves the audio characteristics. ‘The process involves freezing the entire assembled crossover to minus 190 degrees and then thawing it at a controlled rate, which removes micro-stresses in the crystal structure of all conductors in the crossover,’ says Mills. ‘The improvements in musical cohesion and smoothness make it an essential part of the Prestige GR upgrades.’

To mark the Prestige GR milestone, the famous original Tannoy ‘lightning strike’ logo has been incorporated into the trim on all models throughout the Prestige GR series. ‘The design element of the lightning strike logo lends itself to the timeless traditional styling of the Prestige GR models and reminds listeners of the proud heritage of  the Tannoy brand, built over more than eight decades of audio innovation,’ said Paul Clarke, of Audio Active, which distributes Tannoy in Australia. ‘And so far as the sound is concerned, high power-handling, high sensitivity and breath-taking clarity and musical communication are the common theme across the range, along with point-source articulation, precision imaging, extended natural bass and incredible dynamics.’

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