The range of Solitaire speakers is based on the principle of the Cylinder Wave Transducer (CWT), designed to generate a very homogeneous sound field between the speakers, but transmitting little mid-range and treble above the cabinet and downwards. This approach produces very little reflected sound, and therefore minimises the listening room’s influence on sound quality,because it is the mid-range to treble area that carries the information which is crucial to the overall sound image, such as accurate orientation, spatial effects and dynamics. It is very difficult to design a loudspeaker of this kind since normal drive units such as dome tweeters and mid-range drivers are point sound sources, and cannot eliminate the room’s influences.
For this reason we decided to take an entirely different path, and developed a unique electrostatic device for the ultra-critical high-frequency range: the unit is relatively long and very slim, and this means that its radiation pattern in the horizontal plane is excellent, but its output is greatly reduced above and below the horizontal (line source). The membrane of the electrostatic unit is feather-light, and therefore offers extremely fast response; the signal passed to it is also zoned, with the result that it radiates a perfect cylindrical wave right up to the highest frequencies.
We have achieved the same radiation pattern in the bass / mid-range by adopting an array of up to eight mid-range drive units (line array); a side-effect of the multiple drivers is that the maximum amplitude of each individual mid-range unit is very small even at the highest levels. This endows the bass / mid-range with enormous dynamic range, which matches the electrostatic tweeter perfectly.
For the bass we use long-throw drive units with an extremely low resonant frequency, operating in a sealed enclosure. This design offers simply the best possible peak handling and transient response characteristics. The large cone area and powerful drive systems of these units endow the speaker with an effortless ability to generate high volume levels even at very low frequencies.
The sophisticated double-sided crossover unit is fitted with the finest components, carefully selected. The crossover is accurately calculated, and fine-tuned for perfect timing, optimum transient response and peak-handling characteristics. These attributes ensure that the three frequency ranges are matched perfectly to each other. Since the entire vocal range is handled by the mid-range units alone, the loudspeaker produces an extraordinarily spacious and natural sound image.
The speaker cabinet is of extremely stiff, heavy construction, as it must not be permitted to oscillate or transmit carcase sound under any circumstances. This is accomplished by making the walls, the top and the internal partitions from multi-layer laminated material no less than 30 to 40 mm thick. The bass units are installed in pairs, screwed to each other in their own chambers, and de-coupled from the cabinet itself. The mid-range drivers have individual, airtight, fully de-coupled enclosures of completely asymmetrical design. The electrostatic unit is also mounted in an asymmetrical chamber, and its rear volume is damped.