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Infinity RS625

Posted on 2009.09.03 at 08:05
Current Location: 75409
Current Music: McCreary - The Sarah Connor Chronicles
Tags: , ,

:40 second video

Back when Infinity was light-years ahead of the rest of the world engineering speaker systems, and the $50,000 Kappa System V was available for purchase, I had a dormmmate who owned a pair of Kappa 9. It was on this system I first heard Enya, and first heard what Beethoven's symphonies sounded like in the able hands of Herbert Von Karajan and the Berliner Philharmoniker. Ultimately I would purchase four sets of Infinity speakers. My first three were the more moderately priced Studio Monitor (SM) series, but my last set would be the Reference Standard (RS) 625.

Once, when a set of Kappa 7 went on sale at the Base Exchange in Mildenhall, my roommate wanted them so badly we jumped in my Jag and screamed East across the A14 to get there before they closed. They were so tall, we had to drop them in the back seat through the sunroof. Drove all the way back to RAF Alconbury with them sticking out the top. We were late for work.

He has them to this day. You don't get rid of speakers like that. In fact, I've had mine so long I understand these coveted injection molded graphite drivers are now considered Vintage in the niche-market.

I bought the RS625's as I was leaving Korea. They shipped free-of-charge to overseas addresses, and I saved myself $200 in shipping costs. Unfortunately, I haven't had much of an opportunity to listen to them in the last fifteen years or so. The last time I had them active was at the Party of the Decade where they were matched with drax0r's amp.

But recently on the Anna Texas Community Forum an individual was selling an amp for $25. Now its not as powerful as drax0r's 400-watt RMS system, but at 110-watts per channel, they drive them just fine as you can tell from the above video (any distortion is only the camera's limited microphone). And I no longer need an elaborate setup. Armed with my Nano and a thick MONSTER CABLE, the tunes will be plentiful. And just in time too. You see, no longer are the late nights and early mornings 100-degrees. Nope, we're getting lows in the 60s.

Time to open the garage, crack some beer, and pump the tunes! Won't you join me?


dawaioser at 2009-09-03 15:25 (UTC) (Link)
Haha...it's a good thing you know all of your neighbors and community, yes? I'm such a heathen now. Nick spoiled me with his speakers and high-quality audio junk...now everything else sounds weak and tinny.
ehowton at 2009-09-03 16:15 (UTC) (Link)
Yes, my wife used to be the same way - thinking the speakers on the television were sufficient for movie-watching. Us men to have our place on this earth ;)
bry_the_heretic at 2009-09-03 16:34 (UTC) (Link)
There is no way I'd ever watch a flick without the surround system on. Fortunately for me my wife is more techy gadgety than I. But of course I end up connecting and calibrating everything.

ehowton at 2009-09-03 16:37 (UTC) (Link)
I'm entirely happy with our 2.1 system in there; in the early days of surround it was mostly delay and reverb - ugh! So I've not been an early adopter of the technology though I do understand its greatly improved over the years. I am but a simple man. A simple man who demands quality sound sure, but a simple man nonetheless.
bry_the_heretic at 2009-09-03 16:46 (UTC) (Link)
I'm not even sure what we have. All I know is that it sounds awesome. The terminology never sticks in my head. I am a simple man myself.

Leave complexity to the women. ;P LOL
Tomas Gallucci
schpydurx at 2009-09-03 16:01 (UTC) (Link)
You overpaid for that cable. It has the same quality as a coat hanger and is not related to the drink in any way.

And I thought you were supposed to be the smartest man on the block.
ehowton at 2009-09-03 16:27 (UTC) (Link)
Your use of the word 'quality' is misleading as you seem to be focusing solely on the quality of sound which is reproduced. Fine, I'll give you that some test results point to the conclusion you've regurgitated here.

I could've purchased a $3 cable. However, in my experience it wouldn't last nearly as long as a quality made product. Name brands are, more often than not, made to more exacting standards than cheap Chinese knock-offs. They have to be in order to keep their customer base.

So I didn't purchase the cable thinking it would sound better, as you assume here, rather that rather than purchase a handful of $3 cables at some interval, I'll likely never have to buy a replacement cable.
bry_the_heretic at 2009-09-03 16:21 (UTC) (Link)
My experience with Infinity has always been positive. I came in my pants the first time. I was at a high-end audio/visual retail store when I heard this most beautiful rendition of Andrés Segovia being played. I turned around expecting to find a live guitarist plucking away. To my extreme surprise all I saw was an Infinity speaker. Most shocking - it was around a half inch thick board that stood around 4 feet.

I asked the sales guy if I could crank it. He reached over and turned it all the way up... WHOA! Zero distortion and I swear I could hear, the artist playing on the CD, breathing.

ehowton at 2009-09-03 16:34 (UTC) (Link)
You know. Oh yes, you know. My wife and I will be spending this long weekend cleaning out the garage and prepping it for nocturnal activities. The Inifinity's will greatly ease our workload...
Tomas Gallucci
schpydurx at 2009-09-04 14:34 (UTC) (Link)
Is the track in the video the same as the music you have listed for the post?
ehowton at 2009-09-04 15:47 (UTC) (Link)
Aye. Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles opening theme by Bear McCreary. The observant will also notice its on the iPod screen as well.

I'm still planning my "Best Of Bear" for you sometime in the distant future ;)
Tomas Gallucci
schpydurx at 2009-09-04 15:49 (UTC) (Link)
I'm still planning my "Best Of Bear" for you sometime in the distant future
I'm all a-titter.
pgrtop at 2009-09-05 05:39 (UTC) (Link)
I have a set of Infinity Reference Standard 3A speakers that I purchased from the AAFES catalog in 1984. I was stationed in Turkey so I could order from the "Overseas" catalog. The speakers were delivered to my apartment via motor freight in 2 cartons that weighed 80 pounds each. My wife was shocked...I drove them with a Soundcraftsmen amp that was rated at 400 watts per channel. The were horrifically inefficient speakers but when you drove them properly...Wow!

I still have the speakers as I cannot bear to part with them, even though I have not had them connected to anything for over 10 years...they sit in the corner of my gameroom, waiting for the chance to wow me again.
ehowton at 2009-09-05 14:14 (UTC) (Link)

Why did Constantinople get the works?

Its the Turkish version of my story! I bet every serviceman has a stereo story.
(Deleted comment)
ehowton at 2009-09-05 14:16 (UTC) (Link)
Today will be a long, sweaty day as we transform the garage into Party Central.
(Deleted comment)
ehowton at 2009-09-05 15:31 (UTC) (Link)
Hey that reminds me - I got the dates for the next Anna Glowfest. Interested in coming up for that? First weekend in November!
dentin at 2009-09-08 16:02 (UTC) (Link)
Eric, this is going to sound weird, but from the video you posted, it looks to me like the top speaker is wired backwards. Have you ever had the cabinet apart? I think the + and - leads on that cone are switched.

You could test it with a nine volt battery; disconnect the speaker and touch the battery momentarily across the speaker input. The tweeters will click, and the woofers will move. They should all move in the same direction, at the same time.
ehowton at 2009-09-08 17:56 (UTC) (Link)
The RS625 uses a single 8-inch driver and two 8-inch passive radiators which behave exactly like you've pointed out. From Wikipedia:

A speaker enclosure using a passive radiator usually contains an "active driver" (or main driver), and a "passive cone" (or drone or passive radiator). The active driver is a regular driver, and the passive is typically the same or similar, but without a voice coil and magnet assembly. It is only a suspended cone, not attached to a voice coil or electrical circuit. The passive radiator usually has some means to adjust its mass, thereby allowing the speaker designer to change the box tuning. Internal air pressure produced by movements of the active driver cone moves the passive radiator cone as well.

Passive radiators are used instead of a reflex port for much the same reasons—to tune the small volume and driver for better low frequency performance. Especially in situations in which a port would be inconveniently sized (usually too long for practical box configurations). They are also used to eliminate port turbulence and reduce motion compression caused by high velocity airflow in small ports (especially small diameter ones). Passive radiators are tuned by mass variations (Mmp), changing the way their compliance interacts with motion of the air in the box. The weight of the cone of the passive radiator should be approximately equivalent to the mass of the air that would have filled the port which might have been used for that design. Passive radiators do not behave exactly as do (more or less) equivalent bass-reflex designs in that they cause a notch in system frequency response at the PR's free air resonant frequency; this causes a steeper roll-off below the system's tuned frequency Fb, and poorer transient response. Due to the lack of vent turbulence and vent pipe resonances, many prefer the sound of PRs to reflex ports. PR speakers, however, are more complex to design and likely to be more expensive as compared to standard reflex enclosures.

The frequency response of a passive radiator will be similar to that of a ported cabinet, with two exceptions. The system low frequency roll-off in a passive radiator design will be slightly steeper, and will have a notch (dip) in frequency response due to the Vas (compliance, or stiffness of the speaker cone) of the passive radiator. The goal in designing a passive radiator is to adjust the tuning so that this notch is below audible levels.
dentin at 2009-09-10 01:30 (UTC) (Link)
Ok, understood. Passive radiators are unusual in my world; I hadn't expected to see them here.
ehowton at 2009-09-10 01:51 (UTC) (Link)
They sure sound nice though.
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