We’ve recently reviewed an amazing innovation in sound quality for home cinema and HiFi systems.

I had an amazing, in fact inspirational visit this week to Gecko home cinema along with their partner Prestige Audio to see and hear some of their new home cinema/media room and hi-fi solutions that deliver unbelievable sound quality. The transformation in sound quality has been delivered due to a new range of sound processors incorporating RoomPerfect™ room correction software patented by Lyngdorf Audio.

The theory goes that up to 50% of the sound that you hear from your current TV surround sound or hi-fi system is derived from your room characteristics. Therefore, when you listened to the system in the demonstration suite of your local dealer, the chances are that when you got it home, it sounded quite different in your room. This is primarily because your home is not acoustically tuned to show off the best characteristics of any given system; it’s the place you live your life, filled with things you love, it’s not a sterile “acoustically neutral” room. Given the often-limited spaces in modern homes, most of us need to maximise the use we get from every bit of space. As we don’t have the luxury of a dedicated “home cinema” or listening room, the move towards more flexible “media rooms” is increasing.

Therefore, it clearly makes sense to tune your system to match your room, not the other way around. Although room correction technology has been around for well over 10 years, Lyngdorf’s patented RoomPerfect™ technology is nothing like anything I have heard before, ever. What I also love about the system is the ability to start small and grow by adding speakers and interface cards.

The first stereo system I listened to included:

  • Lyngdorf TDAi2170 digital amplifier with RoomPerfect
  • Lyngdorf MH-2 compact on wall speakers
  • Lyngdorf BW-2 boundary woofers

The total system price was £5,780, which, given the quality of the sound I believe is excellent value for money.

When set up with RoomPerfect™ the results were measurably and sonically far more accurate than any comparable music system I’ve ever heard.

Perhaps just as important as the quality of this system is the fact that the speaker used are very compact. By working with a pair of compact “boundary woofers” the system delivers superb, full range sound from a discrete system. If you thought great sound required big speakers, this is the system that will change your mind.

The second music system

The second system used the larger Lyngdorf TDAi3400 digital amplifier with RoomPerfect™ partnered with a pair of flush in wall speakers from M&K Sound with a total system cost of £14,800. While many homes will have music systems using in ceiling speakers, these M&K Sound speakers are something very different. M&K Sound are the speakers used by a lot of Hollywood film makers in the production of their movies. The switch to this system provided a huge improvement in the clarity and realism of the sound whilst also playing very loud and reproducing bass you felt as much as heard.

Many clients now expect their music systems to meet a variety of different needs including relaxation with friends, home working and parties; the challenge is that most HiFi systems simply can’t play loud or deep enough when required. This second system I heard used a large subwoofer hidden away at the back of the room to help achieve this. Typically, the addition of a subwoofer to a high quality HiFi adds bass but can reduce the overall quality of the sound. In this system I was not aware of the subwoofer while the in-wall speakers gave a sound one would only think possible from the grandest of HiFi speakers.

The Third system

This was a full Atmos surround sound system (Dolby Atmos being a sound format that takes listening from 2D to 3D). This system features the globally renowned M&K Sound speaker system throughout providing a life-like recreation of sound. This room has taken a couple of years to tweak, with experts being brought in to measure and provide acoustic treatment solutions. This dramatically reduces unwanted reflections, and well as dispersing reflections that the system designer would like to keep. This has been done to remove most of the acoustic footprint of the room ensuring that the system sounds as the Director intended. In my opinion one of the best private cinemas I had heard to date.   With a price tag of approximately £40,000, this system needs to provide incredible performance and put simply, it does exactly that.

The last system

This system surprised me beyond words. I walked into a room with no acoustic treatments, decorated with high quality wallpaper and was very echoey. When I clapped my hands, it reverberated in the same way an empty room would. The sound equipment is all Steinway Lyngdorf including the Processor, amps and their surprisingly small speakers. My initial thoughts were that this room was not going to sound particularly good, albeit with a great product, especially having heard the M&K room as well as my experience in the past with Hi-Fi, i.e. you need good room acoustics to start with. I was about to be proved very wrong!

Imagine for a moment you are walking in the countryside with the sound of birds above and around you with wind in the trees and of course the odd plane flying by. With the addition of height speakers, you can now experience this sense of space exactly as if you were there. If you haven’t heard a true 3D sound system then if you listen to this Steinway Lyngdorf system you are in for a real treat.

We listened to/watched several action movies, a music recording at the world-famous Ronnie Scott’s as well as a Dolby Atmos test disc. This system was simply remarkable and an experience I will never forget. This Steinway Lyngdorf advantage is that this is a state of the art system that will fit discretely into any room (without changing the physical structure or moving all the furniture) delivering stunning HiFi quality music along with 3D surround sound movie experience. This RoomPerfect™ enabled system is the first room correction system I have heard that does what it says on the tin. It takes the room out of the equation, allowing this system to sound great in any room. Even at the lofty £90,000 price tag, it’s the best value system of the bunch. Small discreet speakers and the room can be designed without having to worry about acoustic treatments effecting how the room looks.

In summary

All of these systems have the capability to be used as the heart of a high quality, immersive home Audio/Visual system to play your music and movies whether you are streaming, using Blu Rays or satellite/cable services. In my view, these system configurations are all highly recommended and will bring a smile to your face and raise the hairs on your arm every time.

You may also be interested in our related Blog on Home Automation technology Smart Home Automation

 

Steinway lyngdorf model d flagship masterpiece hi fi stereo system

On a final note, for those audiophiles reading this, I also had the rare opportunity to listen to an almost unbelievable stereo system made by Steinway Lyngdorf. The system I listened to was the Steinway Lyngdorf model D which is rightly called their “flagship masterpiece”. The sound is pure, life-like and completely mesmerising; however, you’ll need £180,000 to enjoy the experience in your own home, one can dream!


For more information on the creation of media rooms, home cinemas and hi-fi systems, please contact me, Mike Lander mike@ensoul.co.uk or Joe Carri joe@prestigeaudio.co.uk or Rob Sinden rob@geckohomecinema.com