Coincident Speaker Technology
Triumph Speaker System
This superchunk of a speaker delivers on music and movies
By Al Griffin
The first thing you'll notice about Coincident Speaker Technology's Triumph is that it's a hefty chunk of a speaker, you'd be lucky to prop it on a bookshelf without the shelves collapsing. So with considerable trepidation we placed a pair of Triumphs on the shelves mounted on either side of the seating position in our listening lab. With even greater trepidation we balanced a big, black Triumph center speaker precariously atop our 32-inch Sony TV. Thankfully, sturdy sand-filled stands stood ready for the front speakers.
Why the excess mass? Well, in speaker design, mass can be a good thing-the more weighty the speaker's enclosure, the less likely it is you'll experience cabinet resonances. The inch-thick medium-density fiberboard Coincident Speaker Technology uses for the Triumph's enclosure happens to be exceptionally non-resonant.
A two-way bass-reflex design featuring a 6 1/2-inch woofer and a 1-inch silk soft dome tweeter, the Triumph has a high 90db sensitivity that makes it a good match for low-powered amps or receivers, although it's possible to mate the speakers with powerful amps as well. Specifications for low-frequency extension quote bass response flat to 45 Hz, which means you'll need a subwoofer if you want to use the speakers for home theater.
On music, the Triumphs present a very pleasing tonal balance, with surprisingly ample amounts of tight, well-defined bass. Having a set of NHT SuperOnes-the minispeaker of the moment-around, we decided to conduct a comparison of the two. The results? Both speakers have exceedingly clear, uncolored midranges, with the NHTs possessing greater amounts of detail and "air" in the treble, and the Triumphs possessing mo' better bass. A tough call, but being a sucka for that "airy" quality in the extreme upper frequencies, I might be inclined to lean toward the SuperOnes.
When listening to Dolby Digital-encoded soundtracks played on both Triumph and SuperOnes systems, however, we the Triumphs really begin to shine: The five identical speakers presented a seamless three-dimensional sound-space that caused the gear to disappear; system volume could also be cranked to extremely high levels without any traces of distortion. The highs were slightly too laid-back on movies, but for most people, I imagine this will actually make for an overall less fatiguing sonic experience when sitting through an entire action movie.
The Coincident Speaker Technology Triumph is indeed a triumph of sorts: a speaker that delivers when listening to movie soundtracks, and also sounds mighty fine on music. At $1,500 for the entire system, the price is right. And with bass this good, you'd be likely to not notice if your subwoofer were shut off.
Addendum to the review in Home Theater Magazine
The Triumph has been slightly modified since the review in Home Theater Magazine. The dimensions of the speaker reviewed by Home Theater was 14" H x 11" W x 11 1/2" D.
The new Triumph is 16" H x 9" W x 11 1/2" D, This makes for a sleeker, more elegant appearance. Sonically, the new Triumph is virtually identical except the high end is a little more open and extended due to the narrower front baffle.