Technical design philosophy:
EgglestonWorks’ product development team is committed to two uncompromising ideals: the pursuit of musical truth and freedom from listening fatigue. Our twenty-year history of building the world’s finest studio monitors has demonstrated the importance of combining high resolution with a mellifluous sonic character that enables mastering engineers to work—and listen—for hours at a time without aural irritation or distraction. We feel that what an engineer needs in a speaker is exactly what music lover needs: fatigue-free listenability. Our philosophy might sound obvious but the truth is that accuracy often comes at the expense of listenability and vice-versa. Not so with EgglestonWorks, where resolution and musicality ALWAYS go hand-in-hand.
Another hallmark of EgglestonWorks’ design philosophy is to create the absolute best speaker at any given price point. This might sound logical–doesn’t every company want to make the best speaker possible?–but the imperative to produce a complete product range often raises concerns that a particular model might be “too good,” have “too much bass,” etc. for its price point, thereby stealing sales from other models. EgglestonWorks doesn’t share this belief. Our goal is to make every speaker we produce the absolute best performer that it can POSSIBLY be for any given price level. Compared to many of our competitors, EgglestonWorks offers a small collection of models and each speaker within our product line is intended to deliver state-of-the-art sound quality within given parameters of room size, gear and budget. This approach guarantees that each EgglestonWorks model is an exceptional value as well as a superb performer.
Our “Small Batch” production system is equally special. Rather than mass-produce on an assembly line, every pair of EgglestonWorks is hand built to order by our team of trained craftsmen. This approach makes EgglestonWorks more responsive to our customers’ desires and ensures we don’t wind up with excess inventory. Most importantly, “Small Batch” production enables us to tailor each pair of speakers to its owner’s desires (a virtually unlimited palette of custom colors is available) and enables a level of quality control which cannot be achieved in any other way. The result is a finished product designed to exceed its owner’s expectations for a lifetime.
Like all EgglestonWorks’ “Small Batch” Loudspeakers, Kiva is designed and manufactured in Memphis: America’s First City of Music. The first EgglestonWorks model named in honor of Memphis’ musical heritage, Kiva was a local recording studio co-founded by Eagles alumnus Joe Walsh. It was here that Stevie Ray Vaughn recorded “In Step” and “The Sky is Crying.” Kiva delivers levels of performance and musicality unmatched at its price.
The Kiva is so closely derived from the Viginti that before we chose a name, we simply called it “Baby Viginti”. Although Kiva’s drivers are different from those found in Viginti, the cabinet design is almost identical.
Some technical highlights:
- The Kiva cabinet features wall thickness of 1.53” to 1.79” constructed of multiple layers of MDF and HDF with aluminum baffle braces. The cross-sectional area of the low frequency port is optimized to minimize any chuffing or compression issues. Compound woofer design using 100% acoustic fill, modified transmission line midrange loading with 100% acoustic fill. Crimped, non-settling Dacron and felt acoustic fill are used throughout.
- Individual “Quasi-Transmission Line” chambers for each midrange driver: each of the two midrange drivers is loaded into a heavily damped, quasi-transmission line tube which tapers as it opens to the rear of the enclosure. This design eliminates the problem of internal reflected acoustic energy coming back through the driver diaphragm. As a driver propagates acoustic energy into the room, an equal amount of energy is generated within the enclosure by the rear or “Back wave” of the driver diaphragm. Given a massive and rigid enclosure, the back wave’s only ‘path’ out of the box and into the room is through the diaphragm. Driver diaphragms are, by necessity, thin and light to minimize mass and increase efficiency, but these qualities also constitute a good transmission point for sound. This back wave starts 180 degrees out of phase with the front wave and then experiences additional phase progression as it reflects inside the cabinet. Once this energy travels through the diaphragm it superimposes on the front wave, causing phase (and thus level) distortions to the net sound heard by the listener. Treating the walls with absorbent material or filling the enclosure loosely with a fibrous tangle absorptive material offers some help but this benefit occurs mainly at high frequencies due to their shorter wavelengths. In the midrange and lower midrange frequencies where our ears are most sensitive to distortion, absorptive materials offer much less benefit. In order to fully control the back wave, Kiva’s midrange enclosures feature:
- Transmission-line tubes are heavily damped with absorptive material to promote energy dissipation as the wave travels through the tube. These tubes are long to maximize the path along which the wave travels through absorptive material, thereby optimizing overall net absorption. They open to the rear to provide a minimally reflective boundary condition at the end of the tube and thus minimize the amount of energy that is reflected back up the tube to the diaphragm. What little energy is reflected has to travel back through the long, highly damped tube and is thus further attenuated.
- An additional benefit of having the driver tubes open to the rear is that a small amount of desirable ‘ambience’ is imparted by the speaker into the room. In this manner the speaker behaves as a dipole but not in the strictest sense in that the rear wave is highly attenuated by the time it exits the back of the enclosure.
- The tube is tapered to minimize the effect of standing waves within the tube both longitudinally and transversely. The result is ideal control of the drivers’ back waves.
- The tweeter is a large, soft dome model to provide warmth and long-term listenability combined with enhanced dynamic capabilities.
- The crossover frequency between the midrange drivers and the tweeter is 2.2 kHz.
- The tweeter has an electrical 3rd order high pass crossover with a net 4th order acoustic response.
- The midrange drivers have an electrical 2nd order low pass crossover with a net 4th order acoustic response and an electrical 2nd order high pass with a net 2nd order acoustic response
- The dual 7.5 inch woofers in the Kiva are configured in the same manner as the 10 inch woofers in the Viginti. Though smaller in diameter, the combination of dual bass drivers delivers similar sound quality.
- The crossover frequency between the woofers and midrange drivers is 250 Hz.
- The subwoofer drivers have an electrical 2nd order low pass crossover with a net 2nd order acoustic response
- The Helmholtz resonant frequency for the vented woofer cabinet is tuned to a very low 37 Hz which puts the resulting Group Delay phase shift in a region where our ears are minimally sensitive to phase errors.
- The cross sectional area of the port is maximized to reduce any “Port Chuffing” or dynamic compression issues.