I just became aware of the LG HU85 Ultra Short Throw Projector and it looks like it would remove the stigma of having a TV between the speakers. The unit is only 2-7 inches back from the screen, and can be mounted low, between my two Naim Fraim Stacks. It looks real nice, not like most projectors. Anyone with experience with one of these? I won’t post the link, you can google on it. I am going for a in store demo this week.
Here is what the room looks like from the listening position–you can almost not see the projector. I really like that.
I went for the LG HF85LA Ultra Short Throw Projector. Its somewhat unique in that it sits near floor level and projects upwards from several inches in front of the screen. I have a floor rising screen on order which will come in a month. The pic in the following post shows the home made one I cobbled up from white foam board while in self hunker down in place here in Mass, USA. The projector fits nicely between a Fraim and a Power Amp as you can see. It also removes the need for a big TV from in between the speakers. I will take the fold down one from the ceiling when the new screen comes. They do recommend an Ultra Short Throw Screen. Mine is Vivid Storm. Very pleased with the picture so far. I am an audiophile and not a videophile–so this unit is not 4K, but for most of what I do, its great. I have a light block shade behind the screen as you can see from the pics.
Nice to see I’m not alone in being an audiophile (possibly not compared to some people here) but definitely non videophile. I love my standard 720p long-throw Epson onto a white wall, it’s way more relaxing and immersive to watch than a TV.
Are those Apogee Duetta Signatures, being driven by an old school Krell?
You are close. They are Apogee Scintillas One Ohm speakers. These were the second speakers offered by the company, following the Full Range Ribbons. I am partial to these two speakers, as I was a cofounder of the company and designed both of these speakers. Yes that is a Krell KSA-80B that was back at the factory for a recap about a year ago–Pure class A and will drop 640 watts into the one ohm load of the scintillas. The Krell and the Scintillas had a great synergy. The Apogees are still being restored by Music Technology in Virginia and another company in Nevada. I recently added a pair of Vandersteen Sub 3’s to get another octave at the low end. This freed up the ribbons and the top end benefitted.
Not aware of any such stigma… and several studios I have been have large screens or windows between the speakers… and they sound blooming fantastic.
I haven’t seen the spec of your projector, but it would be impressive it’s up to the dynamic range and colour gamut of current higher end flat screen technology … however I do realise in a domestic setting there are choices and compromises to make and it’s not all about performance… and sure a big screen TV can be an eye sore.
I do agree UHD content that is not too lossy can be very immersive.
I hope it goes well, enjoy.
I think having the electronics between the speakers may be a bigger problem than a flat screen. It will depend on how the speakers work with the room. Did the projector solution improve sound quality?
Yes there are always compromises. My TV required mounting to the ceiling and folded down. Not far enough for me to be comfortable watching–always felt like I was taking off in a jet airliner. I have a sliding glass door on the far wall. Also have a Hunter Douglas light block pleated shade which acts somewhat as a diffuser. It was not practical to mount the TV at a good viewing sight. In addition, my wife did not want to block the view, so it had to be something that would deploy. Using a floor rising screen checks all the boxes. I got the Ambient light Projection screen type, that will not be here for a couple of weeks. That will enhance the experience from what I have read. A good screen is half the battle. Not expecting it to rival the best high end flat screens, but from what I have seen so far, its quite good to play dvd and blue ray concerts. Since the concerts I am attracted to are many years old–like 20+ in many cases, they are not available on 4K anyway. As I said, I am not looking to be a videophile, as that would take $$ from the audio hobby to which I must admit I am somewhat addicted.
I still have the TV overhead, and I am quite sure that he big glass surface is not conducive to the best audio. I try to keep the electronics as low as possible–right now its only 2 Fraim Stacks. This is for good sound and also, my wife does not have a budget limit for Audio, but I am under a height restriction to not block the view behind the screen. I have no space for a Fraim on the side walls, so this is the way it has to be. In addition, that saves long expensive IC cables.
I will be taking the TV down when my new screen arrives, or when Covid 19 clears, as I will need a hand. Probably there for a month or so. Pretty lucky to have a music room with few restrictions. Doubles as my office in the home.
I really like the look of that. And it appears to be a good mobile solution for holidays etc. What’s the picture quality like?
@bailyhill. I thought the founders of Apogee where Jason Bloom ( who I met at CES a couple of times) and Leo Spiegel. When they passed away some fellow in Australia got the rights to build and fix them.
Thanks Michaelb for the kind comments. I have only had it for a week, so have not had a chance to do any mobile stuff. However, its a nice size–about 1/4 the size of the typical projector we are used to seeing hanging from the ceiling. While I have had a TV overhead in the music room, this is my first projector. At this point, I am just using a white foam board makeshift screen, so its a little premature to assess the picture quality. I can say that so far its really a natural picture, particulaly on skin tones of faces. When I get the real screen designed for Ultra Short Throw Projectors, I will re evaluate–slated for delivery in April. If your are an audiophile primarily, but enjoy some video concerts, some tv, its a great unit, but I think most videophiles would want more. I am primarily an Audiophile. Right now its a little hard to set up. The instructions are lacking. There are many pages of legal notices, in several languages, but the Quick Set Up instructions are lacking at this point.
Thanks for that. I’m not really seriously into video at all - or TV. It would just be nice to have something that can project well on a wall without too much fuss, offering something a bit better than using my 27" Mac monitor for friends and family on the odd occasions when we watch socially. Generally our viewing is on a 12" iPad in bed!
That story is half the truth. You will find that written on the internet in various places. Actually, and this can be proved with documents filed with the state of Massachusetts, Apogee Acoustics was founded in 1981 by Leo Speigel, David Speigel and myself–Gary Walker. This story can also be verified by several early employees and volunteers who worked with the company. Jason came aboard about 1983 to run the Marketing for Apogee. Before his time, Apogee had been to 2 CES shows in Chicago at the Raphael Hotel, had set up with the help of Mike Kay of Lyric, dealerships in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Coral Gables, New York, and Boston–all Mark Levinson dealers. Jason came aboard as a full partner after that time and brought needed capital to expand the business. Jason took on additional dealers that were not supportive of the original dealers. The Scintilla was introduced at the second CES show to critical acclaim and the issues with one ohm impedance, which Jason had passed by about a dozen amplifier manufacturers who had no issues. The result of the dealer issues and low impedance of the Scintillas split the company. I ended up stepping away from Apogee at that point and took a stock position in the company, but had no desire to continue what had been a 3 year, 7days a week, 18 hour a day passion. I went back to consulting in the Navigation business and had full time work almost immediately. Apogee continued for nearly a decade. There is a rumor I have read that Apogee lost a patent suit to Magnepan, while there was a settlement, I have no knowledge of any infringement by Apogee. I read the Magnepan patents carefully and saw no infringement. Apogee lawyers agreed. Apogee was awarded a patent for its design, and my name is proudly on that Patent for the Full Range Loudspeaker.
As for the final chapter of Apogee in Massachusetts, as I say I was not involved in the day to day operations, and only attended stock holders meetings after the company went Public in 1989. A year later, I got paid, and this was the first compensation that I received for my efforts after 9 years. The company had a secondary offering sometime later. The proceeds were used to develop new products, in particular Direct Digital Amplification—I suspect Class D by another name but I don’t know. Then in 1996, the company was sold to Analog and Digital Systems of Willmington, Mass. I was told by someone inside that this was a way for the Spiegel Family to distance themselves from Jason.
Jason was a great audiophile, was maybe the first to understand positioning of the Apogees, and maybe speakers in general. While he had a successful Art Dealer business prior to coming to Apogee (BTW: Jason was Leo Speigel’s son in law–married to Sara, Leo’s Daughter). However he never displayed the skills to manage to costs, and thought that the way to make Apogee profitable was to increase the volume. I had a partial Business School education in addition to two Engineering Degrees, and I knew that increased volume will solve a problem where the fixed costs are too high by spreading them over a larger volume. However, Apogee’s problem was that the variable costs were too high, or the selling price of the product was too low. Additional volume only exacerbates the problem. However, the others were the business experts and told me to just worry about the engineering of the speakers and they would handle the finances. Apparently Analog and Digital Systems thought they could make a success of things. I cannot imagine that smart business people there would have seen that in the due diligence prior to sale. So about 6 months later, A&D systems went out of business.
Some time later, the Gras from Australia bought the assets and did lots of good work. By this time, the Neo Magnets had come way down in cost and he made some versions that would work with tube amplifiers. He also supplied replacement ribbons, which are being used to upgrade speakers to this day by Music Technology in Virginia, and someone in Nevada, whom I cannot recall the name.
So that is the true story of Apogee Acoustics. Apogee Technology was spun off as a biotech company and to my knowledge is active to this day. Apparently for marketing reasons, Jason and Apogee chose to call him a founder, and pretty much never included me in the true history. I take great pride in reading all the positive reviews on the net.
On a personal note, I took a 34 year hiatus from audio. I never in that time turned on, or owned an audio system. I only listened to my car radio. I could not bear to listen after what happened to me. Two years ago I had a fire in my house, and lost a pair of Full Range Ribbons which I had never connected. I had given my father a pair of Scintillas, and had them in storage. I activated them with the Adcom 555 amp and a cd player. Well its been a journey for 2 years, and I am an audiophile again.
Professionally, after Apogee I consulted for 7 years and then took a position with Northop Corporation as Director of Engineering for Inertial Products and later was promoted to Director of Engineering of Navigation Products. I retired in 2004 and have been happily pursuing Astronomy as a Citizen Scientist and Audiophile.
Currently all streaming: Router>Naim Unity Core & Nucleus+ >Roon> eR>Meridan Ultra Dac>Krell KSA-80B>Apogee Scintillas One Ohm, & Vanersteen Model 3 Subs and LGHF85LA Projector and Vividstorm UST Screen. I can say that the sound today is much better than the Goldmund Studio, Koetus, Mark Levinson 6A, ML-9, ML-3’s that we had back in the day.
Hi Gary… I did read about you I loved Apogees… I had a Pair of Mini Grands at one time with the Dax and all. Should have never sold them. Then I moved off Hifi as an active hobby and got back into Motorcycling… About 10 years ago after a couple of good friends got killed. I decided that I needed to slow down. Luck is not a bottomless well. It was getting too scary, I was riding too fast too much , and the desire had waned. Then about 5 years ago the Big C came knocking, after beating that eff’ing monster (almost 5 years now) I went back to being an Audiophile at a reduced rate $$$ .
The LG HF85LA looks like its right up your alley.
There was one writeup where “Gary Walker a friend” was mentioned. Not much solice for tons of hours in the plant when others were home having dinner with their families.
Sorry to hear that you moved off of Mini Grands. Never heard them. Must have been quite a system.
I too had the “Big C” Going on 8 years for me. Dogged a big bullet. Had Melanoma, you can only cure with surgery, and if they don’t get it all, well its “psyanara”.
Our place doesn’t allow for blacking out the room to use a projector, so we’re “stuck” with a TV.
They were wonderful. I used an Adcom 585 for the woofers and a big Classe’ CA300 for the panels. If I recall the first of the series was the Grand, They were $65k then came the Studio Grand which was Duetta on the woofer bins, they were $15k Then the Minis which were Stages on woofer bins about $7500. with the Dax crossover. Fun times