View Full Version : TDL RTL 2 or not, is the ?

02-28-2006, 07:48 PM
Hello to everyone!
I,m new to AK. I'm near 50 and my favourite Marantz is in my sons room with old AR18 and sound still fantastic. I'm obviously in retro mood so I bought Sansui 7070 and beautiful Dual 621 turntable but at the moment there is no speakers. Have the opportunity to by solid TDL RTL2 speakers for 200 us. In past few days-nights was looking thru net to find some info about TDL. I find only that bas is punchy and muddy. I listen a lot of vocal, classic, dance and of course good old rock. Looking for advice from someone who have experience in those speakers. What do you guys think about marriage of Sansui 7070 and TDL RTL 2.
Tnx for any answer and greetings from Croatia. :music: Hrvas

02-28-2006, 07:56 PM
Well, I've never heard of TDL speakers, which leads me to believe they are either rare high-end pieces or crap. No idea which. BTW, there's lots of shit I've not heard of, so this reply is really quite useless. - Mark

Edit: Oh, I mean :D

Ol Sparky
02-28-2006, 11:36 PM
British speakers about $779 msrp
review here:

03-01-2006, 12:41 AM
I heard a pair once.
They were okay, I guess. They have a solid reputation with a lot of Brits.

The most prevalent shortcoming of Transmission Line speakers is that they have "one-note bass."

Audition them well with music that's familiar to you.

03-01-2006, 03:02 AM
TDL were a British company that specialised in transmission line loudspeakers, most of which were high end and expensive.

The RTL ("Reflex Transmission Line") series was introduced in the early 90's as a more "budget" offering and the RTL2's were the smallest in the range.
They are indeed good speakers and are a nice introduction to the world of transmission line bass. Be warned, though, that this is very addictive and you may never want to go back to conventional speakers!

As a footnote, TDL Electronics had a sad end when in the space of a few months, 2 of the directors died - one in a car accident and one of cancer IIRC, and the company was unable to continue. The name is now used by Richer Sounds in the UK and is merely a badge on Chinese-produced speakers which are cheap and reasonable, but nowhere near the quality of "proper" TDL's and not worthy to carry the name IMHO.

03-01-2006, 10:51 AM
TDL was the successor to IMF, the company that pioneered the commercial transmission line speaker. Their products were generally very well regarded, but rather expensive relative to percieved value -- the cabinets were more complex and the drivers often more sophisticated than most other manufacturers' -- so they were always a niche market.
Transmission lines done properly are the very opposite of one note bass, but they sound different than other types of bass loading, and frequently people mistake the lack of coloration for a lack of bass, and often they are badly placed and interact with the room, so when low notes are actually there, they are out of proportion, and sound bloated.
I have mixed feelings about them -- in some ways they sound so much more real than other speakers, and even at low volumes the bass seems to breath. But they can be disappointing for rock and even jazz -- that midbass bump that passes for bass in most speakers gives an impact that is nice even if bogus.

03-01-2006, 06:25 PM
Many thanks to everyone. In meantime speakers gone to one lucky fellow. Tomorrow is a new day. Stay well and tuned.

03-12-2006, 08:30 PM
Hallo panger.

A little late, but never the less.
I had for a short time the RTL-2s, then upgraded to RTL-3s. And it gave me the opportunity to make an A/B test.

But first, the RTL-2 sounds great. They have a very wide stereo perspective and depth in the sound stage. Accurate in the sound, going towards the analytic side, they are superb with vocals. The speaker does not need a high volume before they sound good. They are linear from minimum input to maximum input; a friend of mine grabbed the speakers as soon as I told him that they were for sale.

But as Nat says, they can be disappointing for rock music. Metallicas black album sounds like s… on the RTLs, and I can imagine that some Jazz horns can also be a problem. I find it is a common problem with the “newer” speakers, that they have that issue. I isolated the problem to be around 5KHz. (for those with an EQ).

2s vs. 3s.

In general there is not much to say, the 3s are bigger, have 2 sub units (still 2 way). The main difference is the sub; it is more full and extreme powerful. I think again Nat is right when he states the bass is “so much more real” and not colored. Even at low volumes you can feel the physics of the bass (Nat calls it to breathe), it is so tight and right in you’re face. The 2s have a little less of this (about half, only one sub unit), but still plenty. In booth cases I newer use the loudness function at low listening levels, all the sound is there so no use for it. And this shall not be misunderstood; they also play well and balanced at high volumes.

A little warning about the RTL-3s, they are so powerful in the bass that they will make the floor vibrate. So the bass might sound a little muddy, especially with wooden floors, they like heavy floors.

The RTL-2s are rated 30-120W, the 3s 30-150W.
I tested the speakers with a Yamaha C-85 and an M-85 (260W@8ohm).
At the current sales price, on the net. The 200$ would have been an ok price for the RTL-2

03-13-2006, 04:57 PM
Oh here there is a link to a guy, well read it: