KLIPSCH CORNWALL III
KLIPSCH CORNWALL III REVIEWS
Whilst researching the Cornwalls, we across these reviews. They talk of exactly what we hear in this speaker. Enjoy reading the reviews.
If the loudspeaker can reproduce the whole frequency spectra, from the lowest to the highest note a human ear can perceive, if it can reproduce a wide range and the most complex sounds effortlessly and with lowest distortion, and if it can reproduce music in its whole dynamic range it must really be a good loudspeaker.
No doubt Klipsch Cornwall can do this. And no doubt, it is an exceptional loudspeaker.
Cornwalls are large speakers and they sound it. They present a very large, natural sound stage. They are one of the few speakers you will ever hear that you will instantly love.
They reproduce music effortlessly, whereas most speakers colour sound in some way. They have a transparency to them that I have not heard before, or since.
The other remarkable thing is volume. These things sound perfect at any volume that you can physically withstand. I can honestly say that I have never heard them distort.
Cornwalls not only reproduce sound. They transfer-transform-restore original power, and energy! Cornwalls transmit, and restore total sound energy within entire audible frequency. They restore it within tremendous dynamic range.
And there is a direct functional correlation between energy radiated by the loudspeaker as a system and the physical and emotional excitation of the listener. That’s why Cornwalls excite so much.
Cornwall is unbeatable in terms of dynamics, presence and the ability to transform a real life feeling into your living room.
They reproduce music with absolute clarity. The sound is pure and clean. Brass is reproduced with th blatt intact. Trumpets and trombones are right there. That’s why Cornwalls are so persuasive.
There is literally thousands of good loudspeakers around. Regardless of price it is hard to find few of them to come close to this masterpiece.
Sometimes I tried to find deficiencies and deviations, but I simply couldn’t.
Klipsch loudspeakers are immortal! They will be out of date only when the laws of physics change.
Finally I would like to tell you I do not dance and I do not say “Yes, yes …” very often, I do no not conduct an orchestra either. But the Klipsch Cornwalls encourage me to do all these. Day by day. They put me into complete harmony with the music. Yes, they make me happy.
And this report? Is it an Ode to the Legend? Yes it is, it certainly is.
Reivewed by Mitja Borko
I have played around with Hi-Fi for more than 30 years, and worked at a high-end dealer many years ago where we used to sell Klipsch. I’ve owned ribbon planars, dynamics of all types, and ATC actives, and heard many other things in between, so I have a keen sense of what’s up and down.
I decided to hear these classic American speakers.
Cornwalls are an American audio Icon. The originals were designed in 19559 and the latest version are easily comparable to the above speakers. They’re 3 way, with horn loaded mid & tweeter and a direct radiating 15” driver. A big, out of style, anti-audiophile, but very fine loudspeaker. Luckily, local dealer displays all Klipsch Heritage products. I listened to all of them last Saturday.
It’s important to recall audiophiles’ typically disdainful opinion of Klipsch Heritage speakers – something one would never be seen listening to, and particularly not own as that would impugn “audiophile” credibility. They obviously aren’t any good as everyone knows without having heard them. I was in that camp, too. I’m not really an audiophile as I don’t “believe” in pebbles, clocks, expensive cables, and other such stuff (been around too long.)
The first notes from Monk’s “Bemsha /swing” rang out, and the room filled with pin-sharp, fast, immediate, tonally natural, pure, slightly midrange orientated sound. You could clearly hear each of Monk’s hits on the keys with impact, emphasizing that the piano is a percussive instrument. I was gobsmacked.
For me it was like a car enthusiast rediscovering the pleasures of pure, tactile driving when trying a 1973 Porsche 911 2.7RS after driving modern, hyper-fast and sticky sports car that do everything perfectly. Sure, the old 911 won’t stick as hard around corners, sure it’s not as fast; no cupholders or airbags; sure it’s not as economical; but it gives you a more tactile, seat-of-the-pants driving experience, with better smells, sound, feel, and fun than a modern 911, and you don’t have to go nearly half as fast to have maximal fun. Like Hi-Fi, modern cars are so focused on the highest highs and lowest bass (where only about 20% of the music is) that whether the end result sounds like music is forgotten.
The bass was lightning fast, with smooth, extended but sweet highs, and the absence of any horn coloration or the slightest cupped sound. I did find that to exist in both the La Scala IIs and Klipschorns, the Cornwalls being smoother and better integrated, with none of the mid-bassy honk or time delay caused by horn-loaded bass /mid-bass. Remember, for those who consider this important, that Stereophile had La Scala IIs ranked in class A – and I’m quite sure the Cornwall IIIs are better.
Playing Maria Callas on the Cornwalls gave me one of the most intense listening experiences I’ve ever had – Callas on those speakers on that day may be the most emotive sound I’ve ever heard. It was fantastic. She was present, projected into the room in 3D, a living, breathing Diva with her quirkily coloured, gorgeous soprano. The Clash were there, a huge sound with massive punch and dynamics, every drum whack present, every touch of guitar strings laid bare, in the most natural, live-sounding manner.
Classical fared as well, with Rubinstein playing Brahms on a concert grand in the room without truncating dynamics, and Yo-Yo Ma’s Cello sounding glorious on Bach’s Cello Sonatas – you’d swear you could hear rosin coming off the bow. The same with Joshua Bell’s violin on Voice of the Violin – if there’s any hint of nasality or horn coloration, violin will bring it out. There was none.
The common denominator is the “live” quality of the sound which I haven’t heard since I sold similar Klipsch speakers 20 years ago. There is a freedom from dynamic limitations, a feeling that the speakers are not limiting whatever dynamics are on the medium, something that is nearly always present on most speakers, planars in particular. It made me think that “audiophile” speaker design has forgotten a basic principle from the golden age of Hi-Fi, the importance of trying to capture the dynamics of live sound as best possible with low distortion, in pursuing ever more top-end detail and stygian bass, which usually just causes problems in most rooms anyway.
So if you can – give them a listen. They’re stupendous.
Classic: Flute and harp: Bach, 3 Sonatas for Flute and Harp, Irena Grafenauer and Maria Graf.
Flute.Magic and subtle, and delicate. I wish Irena (Solvenian, born in Ljubljana) would join me, and say to me “Yes, this is my flute”. And harp, this heaven gift – rich and precise, vibrating free both silent and decisive, punctual, and soft. Speaker’s volume with its low-end might seem over-dimensioned for flute, but contributes to proper harp breathing. Optimal.
Classic, Violin: Niccolo Paganini, Variations on Theme by G. Rossini from the opera “Cinderalla”, Victor Pikaizen – violing, Serafima, Chernyakovskaya – Piano, Melodia
This is almost an archive recording. Probably all-tube recording, and plating process. One of the best “scratchy” recordings. Amazing. Violin is so vivid, and pizzicato so persuasive. No sound compression at all. You can sense 60dB dynamics in its purest sense, and hear violin playing from whispering and trembling silence up to the “broken sting” crescendo. Even the echo within the violin body can be heard.
Bravo to E. Shakhnazaryan, recording engineer. Many of us – including time de Paravicini – could learn from you, unknown expert! Bravo!
Here is the opportunity to share my feelings with Micheal Shed, Cornwall owner from Orlando, who owned Cornwalls almost 25 years, and wrote; “Turn up the volume, Mitja. Let all of Europe enjoy them …”
Classic, Piano Concert: Sergej Rachmaninow, Konzert Fur Klavier und Orchester Nr. 2 C-moll op.18, Agustin Anievas, Das neue philharmonia orchester London, Moshe Atzmon.
I listen to this beautiful record quite often. It is a complete work – composer’s and artist’s masterpiece. Piano, this marvelous instrument, so difficult to reproduce with alls its punch, and its energy is here. It is so difficult to manufacture a loudspeaker which can reproduce piano properly – from the lowest to the highest note – with all its energy, with all its strength, and dynamics. Cornwalls can do this. Have you ever felt – not only heard – real piano being reproduced in your room? Only those who have, know what I am talking about.
Blues: Eric Clappton, Unplugged, Reprise Records.
Relaxed, and open sound. You are there on the stage, you can feel emotion, and you can clap together with the audience. Sound is fast, and you can feel the punches. Dynamics is explosive, and dynamics range is awesome. It is a physical energy that excites. It is not only the sound you are hearing. Hearing is empty without feeling. Horn sceptics – do not worry too much about imaging and spaciousness.
Rock: Bruce Springsteen, Greatest Hits, Columbia.
What an emotion to hear Streets of Philadelphia and My Home Town. What an effortless sound energy. I would like to share my sincere opinion with Scott cox, Cornwall owner from Bakersfield, California, who wrote: “Cornwalls are large speakers and they sound like it! They present a very large, natural sound stage. These things cover entire audible spectrum and sound perfect at any volumes that you can physically withstand.”
Jazz: Jazz at the Pawnshop, Proprius
Sitting in the Pub. Listening to the voices. Feeling atmosphere. Clarinet solo in front, and xylophone, and counter-bass, some visitors clapping, drum section. Everything is there, nothing is missing. Complex sounds are handled very easy, every detail can be heard separately. It’s like every single instrument would have it’s own, well defined place within Cornwall sound stage. Or maybe even its own loudspeaker as a source. Excellent dynamics, very musical and effortless reproduction. Magic. Reference. Listenability, and musicality are unbelievable.
Jazz: The King James version, Harry James & his bad, Sheffield Lab-3
Clear, rich, full frequency and spacious sound. One single stereo AKG C-24 microphone recording. Everything is on the scene, clear, and loud. Saxophone, piano, bass and the drums, everything. And the trumpet, oh trumpet, is there any speaker around that can do this job better than Klipsch? Probably not. Klipsch loudspeakers are immortal! They will be out of date only when the laws of physics change.
Reviewed by Mitja Borko
KLIPSCH CORNWALL III
“The legendary Paul Klipsch was one of the pioneers of Horn loudspeakers. His original Klipschorn dates back to the 1940s, and (with updates) remains in production to the present day. Any speaker still being made after more than half a century has to have something going for it.” Jimmy Hughes
Initially introduced in 1959, the Cornwall speaker was designed to serve as a larger, full-range alternative to the Heresy when used as a center channel speaker between two widely spaced Klipschorns. When it was discontinued in 1990, there was an outcry from consumers resulting in a letter-writing campaign and even a petition to bring back this storied loudspeaker.
This famed speaker, now dubbed the Cornwall III, is back and better than ever. A three-way design using horn-loaded compression drivers for the midrange and treble and a direct-radiating 15-inch woofer for the low frequencies, the Cornwall delivers the full-range bass response of the Klipschorn® with sensitivity and output approaching the fully horn-loaded models. The Cornwall III now includes a riser-base, which was optional in previous versions.
KLIPSCH CORNWALL III REVIEWS
KLIPSCH CORNWALL III SPECIFICATION
KLIPSCH CORNWALL III FINISHES