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Linn Akurate 242’s - my first impressions in 2020


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I’ve tried Keilidhs, Ninkas, Centrik 1’s, Kann II’s and Kabers in multiple configurations and created a rather long thread on the Ninkas as I so thought they would out do my Kabers. I ended up selling the Ninkas in preference of the clarity and refinement of the Kabers  I still missed the more pronounced bass of the Ninkas and finally managed to find a fantastic deal on a pair of used 242’s (Mark 1 with two piece bases). So the saga continues...... I have a 4200/1 and a c3200 that I was using to drive my Kabers in aktiv configuration. I ran the 242’s in bi-amp configuration with the 4200/1 but that lasted only few days as I preferred the sound with just a single wire (to the super tweeters) from 2 channels of the 4200/1.

Placement: from few owners the majority says the speaker backs should be about 26/28 cms from the front wall and maybe it’s just me but my 242’s are way out into our living room. I prefer to measure from the front of the speaker and I think I’m at about (L-R) 77.8 and 79.4 cms from the front wall. In my experiments with the Ninkas I realized measure the distance once you’re satisfied, not before or else it bothers me. My Kabers left speaker was also more out than the right speaker. I usually save the toe in for last. Tweeter to tweeter they are about 212 cms.

Aktiv Configuration: Yesterday I received my last 3 channels of Akurate amplification (Akurate 3200) to take these puppy’s Aktiv. I ended up scoring a full set of 242 mk.1 Aktiv cards in a bulk sale and those need to be tested first to see that nothing’s damaged with the cards.@sunbeamgls was very kind to advise me how to perform the tests so i’ll be testing all the cards on a Kaber spare woofer that I have in storage. Cables will be k600/k400.

08/19/2020 - just tested all the cards as I had bought them in a bulk sale on flea bay and they seem to all work fine. I’ve installed the 3k array cards and next is to install the upper and Lower bass cards.

Then to convert the speakers to aktive.

WATCH THIS SPACE

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I’ve tried Keilidhs, Ninkas, Centrik 1’s, Kann II’s and Kabers in multiple configurations and created a rather long thread on the Ninkas as I so thought they would out do my Kabers. I ended up selling

Many moons ago, I was very fortunate to have Murray Smith (from Linn Products, LTD) march an old friend (who I believe was actually the second ever Linn dealer) and I through all the technical changes

I appreciate you didn’t direct the question at me, David, but I’ll offer a comment or two if I may. My Linn power amp history has been, over twenty-seven years, the following:- 3 x LK100s +

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First day of listening to the 242’s Aktiv. Realized something very very important. Linn sells mediocre speakers until you take them aktive. Phew! Transforming experience.

When I heard the 242’s passive with the an akurate amp I could see potential and on a scale may have rated them as a 6/10 but now when I hear aktiv I have to say they are an 8.5/10 however also reminding myself that the 6/10 in passive was a completely false score. What I’m trying to say is that maybe in the excitement of getting a new to me speaker I gave it too much credit in passive form. After hearing them aktiv, passive seems more like a 2/10.

It’s unbelievable how transformed and different this speaker is when aktiv and maybe I took it for granted as my kabers were also aktiv. I’m curious as to how much i’ll like the kabers when they are never yes back to passive. Maybe makes more sense to buy a 6100 and keep the kabers aktive for a second system. Besides the slight lack of bass I loved every moment of the kabers not to say that moving from the 242’s back to kabers is gonna be easy.

I’m presently running the 4200/1 (D) on the bass and the two 3200’s (non Dynamik) on the 3k arrays. I’ve been advised that the Dynamik amps would work better on the mids and the tweeters but due to complicated speaker placement, short speaker cable runs etc this was the easiest way to set it up.

Now I’m looking for 4 x 12’ of k400’s (since my rack is not in between the speakers) or might just have to Dynamik the two 3200’s.


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I will add that before going aktiv I tamed some off the extra high frequencies (that I was not used to) with my gunstigs that are stuck to the skeets. @jail4ceos you should try the gunstigs skeets under the 212 stands.


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I have been casting a jaundiced eye to my stands in general. It seems to be wrong to blame the peripherals when in the presence of such lauded gear, but I guess the devil may be in the details. I never had your lesser configuration to start, I just went straight to Exakt. You seem to have some of the same perceptions I have been having. 

Edited by Jail4CEOs2
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Congratulations on your new 242’s.

I was happy to hear you drove a long distance to pick them up in person and ensure that they arrived in your home in good condition. 

Aktiv definitely improves the sound quality of 242’s, but driven passive with a pair of Klimax Solos or with a Klimax Twin will sound mighty fine as well. Exakt will be another revelation for your 242’s, someday  😊🙏

Enjoy the music.

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I can confirm that the 242s need a pair of Solos (passiv) or must be driven activ. Even with Twins the 242s deliver not the best performance.

Edited by Ben Webster
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I have heard a pair of beautiful Rosenut 242s driven by a pair of Klimax Solos, and they are stunningly good. It might be less expensive and simpler to find a good used pair. No multiple expensive interconnects or power cords, just two lovely, shiny silver boxes with gentle blue haze😊🎼🎵🎶🎶🎵🎶🤣

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I can confirm that the 242s need a pair of Solos (passiv) or must be driven activ. Even with Twins the 242s deliver not the best performance.

Ben,

Someone mentioned that two solos outdo an all aktiv akurate Setup. Is that true? I find that very very hard to believe.


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Yes they will but not with a Majik source.

That’s the next planned upgrade. Searching for a decently priced Adsm.


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1 hour ago, zee9 said:

Someone mentioned that two solos outdo an all aktiv akurate Setup. Is that true? I find that very very hard to believe.

Well, given that a new pair will, in the Uk, set you back £17,700 and that they have been in production for going on 20 years, there'd have to be something a bit special about them, wouldn't there? :) 

An item high on my "to do" list is to get to hear a good passive system with Solos, to make just the comparison you refer to. I disagree with Suffolkboy to the extent that, while source is always important and the source will always limit downstream components, I suspect that Solos really show their best when they are used with speakers that can handle and use their rated power output of 500 wpc. Large, multi-driver speakers with complex passive crossovers are obvious examples. So I'd expect the Solos to pair well with Komris, 350s and Akubariks, for instance. Whether they can outperform the same speakers run Aktiv or Exakt with Akurate amplification is an open question. I could imagine that it would be a close run thing.

The Solos are unique in the Linn range. They are not Chakra-based, but use essentially the same amplifier topology as the Klout, with some further development and increased power output. I think that, unlike the Klout, the Solos always had an SMPS of some sort, but some years ago they were fitted with the Dynamik power supply. AFAIK, Linn's extended offer of Dynamik upgrades for older Solos while stocks last is still open, at £2,475 a pop.

It is interesting to reflect that, in order to upgrade my present system (Klimax sources, Akurate Exakt, Akubariks) to full Klimax spec with Solos and 350s, I'd have to spend net nearer four than Three times what I have paid for the system so far. Would I get corresponding value from such a purchase? I doubt it very much.

David

Edited by DavidHB
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1 hour ago, zee9 said:


Ben,

Someone mentioned that two solos outdo an all aktiv akurate Setup. Is that true? I find that very very hard to believe.


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Good question. I‘d prefer the two Solos setup because Solos are very, very special - and not cheap.

But I can also understand people who prefer the active option. Starting with x100 amplifier you’ll get a very spectacular music reproduction, using x200 amplifier it becomes more stable and more “right”.

Solos playing very analog and organic. You don’t listen to the system, you listen to the music. With the active setup you listen to a great sounding system.

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25 minutes ago, Ben Webster said:

Solos playing very analog and organic. You don’t listen to the system, you listen to the music. With the active setup you listen to a great sounding system.

Two questions:

1. Given that "analogue" is simply a mental construct, how can it have a sound?

2. What systems did you listen to to reach your conclusion?

David

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As for Twins; I heard an A-B comparison between a Klimax Twin and an Akurate 2200. While the Twin was better, it was not that much better: the Akurate, on SQ balance and price point, is preferable to it.

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30 minutes ago, Ben Webster said:

Solos playing very analog and organic. You don’t listen to the system, you listen to the music. With the active setup you listen to a great sounding system.

I think that is a very accurate comparison.  Having auditioned both a Klimax-level integrated Exakt system and a similarly full-spec Solo-driven analogue set up, I personally felt the latter to be the more musical and involving experience, particularly with the orchestral and acoustic music that forms the lion's share of my listening.  It was a close run thing, mind - and there are still times when I yearn for the extra accuracy and impact that those Exakted 350s revealed to me, especially when I want to rock to The Who's 'Live At Leeds' or Deep Purple's 'Made In Japan'!

I'd add that the greatest system I've ever heard was a no holds barred Klimax system (passive 350's, a Solo on every non-active drive unit, KDSM, and two Klimax Exaktboxes) at the Linn HQ four years ago.  Trouble is (and as David has already pointed out), said system's cost is phenomenally high and way, way out of my price range.  Sigh...

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