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  1. #1

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    Default Polk CRS+ TL vs Totem Hawk

    About a year and a half ago, I was lucky enough to find a pair of minty fresh CRS+ speakers (I had a pair of CRS, non +, that I got rid of a few years ago), with minty original stands, AND already upgraded to TL status, that were less than a 5 minute drive from my house. Having owned a pair fully modded 2BTL's, I knew what to expect when I went and auditioned them. They honestly didn't impress, but for the price & condition, they were a steal. So I brought them home.

    I was never fully happy with my 2BTL's. I was living in a small condo at the time and my electronics weren't even close to what I'm running now. The bass just wasn't there and they just never did it for me all around. I got rid of my first pair of CRS's for the same reason.

    I purchased the Totem Hawks based on their reputation and this review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rTVS0GCwNxg

    I've lived with them for a good year or so, and they are truly impressive speakers. The video review above is spot on. They have more resolving power than any of my SDA's. They are more accurate and image damn well. The Hawks aren't a large speaker so they don't fill my new listening space which is 4x the size of my old condo's.

    I have stepped up my electronics considerably in the past few months.

    Source: Oppo 105D
    Pre: Rogue Audio Perseus Tube Pre
    Amps: B&K M200 Mono's

    The addition of the Oppo and Rogue Tube Pre have been eye opening. I've owned plenty of pre's and was running the Dared SL2000 (with Telefunken & Tungsram tubes) prior to the Rogue, and the Rogue just smokes it. The Oppo is just wonderful as well and mates really well a tube pre because it is on the dry side, but has a great sound.

    Back to the CRS+'s. Like I mentioned, the previous owner did the TL mod and did a complete xover refresh with Solen caps, but left the polyswitch and silver micas in. I decided to replace the Solens with Sonicaps & the resistors with Mills a couple of weeks ago AND I removed the polyswitch (replaced with .5 ohm mills resistor) and removed the silver micas.

    I gave em' a good 100+ hours and what I'm getting now is just remarkable. I've swapped the Totem Hawks in and out with the refreshed CRS+ TL's and I with out a single doubt absolutely prefer the CRS+. Bigger soundstage, sweeter tone, not as accurate but far more musical IMO. I never heard my 2BTL's sound like this. It has to be the electronics and the new listening space. It sounds so much better that I'm now considering the big boys at some point.

    It's so funny how these old speakers beat out new speakers that I paid a couple of thousand dollars for. Just ridiculous. I'm looking forward to the new tube amp (Rogue Stereo 90 Super Magnum) that will arrive on Monday.

    Just a little love for the SDA's baby!
    Last edited by audiocr381ve; 07-06-2014 at 01:31 AM.
    -Shane

  2. #2

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    I might even forgive your disparaging remark for that review.....at least I'll think about it.
    'Political Correctness'.........defined

    "A doctrine fostered by a delusional, illogical minority and rabidly promoted by an unscrupulous mainstream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a turd by the clean end."

  3. #3

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    You'll need at least another 100-200 hrs on the Sonicaps to really hear what they're capable of. Replace the stock 16mh Inductors with SuperQ Laminated Steel Inductors, and you'll be even more impressed.
    Home Theater/2 Channel:
    Front: SDA-2ATL http://www.polkaudio.com/forums/show...ished...Almost
    Center: Custom http://www.polkaudio.com/forums/show...hannel-Project
    Surrounds & Rears: Custom http://www.polkaudio.com/forums/show...rround-Project
    Sonicaps, Mills, RDO-194s-198s, Dynamat, H-Nuts, BH5
    Pioneer Elite VSX-72TXV, Carver PM-350, SVS PB2-Plus Subwoofer


    www.dhsspeakerservice.com

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by westmassguy View Post
    You'll need at least another 100-200 hrs on the Sonicaps to really hear what they're capable of. Replace the stock 16mh Inductors with SuperQ Laminated Steel Inductors, and you'll be even more impressed.
    I'm replacing ALL of the inductors and they should be here in the next month and a half. Excited about that!

    I did replace the 16mh inductors with SuperQ's in my 2BTL's. It definitely helped the bass.
    -Shane

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    Quote Originally Posted by audiocr381ve View Post
    I'm replacing ALL of the inductors and they should be here in the next month and a half. Excited about that!

    I did replace the 16mh inductors with SuperQ's in my 2BTL's. It definitely helped the bass.
    Sounds like a plan.
    Home Theater/2 Channel:
    Front: SDA-2ATL http://www.polkaudio.com/forums/show...ished...Almost
    Center: Custom http://www.polkaudio.com/forums/show...hannel-Project
    Surrounds & Rears: Custom http://www.polkaudio.com/forums/show...rround-Project
    Sonicaps, Mills, RDO-194s-198s, Dynamat, H-Nuts, BH5
    Pioneer Elite VSX-72TXV, Carver PM-350, SVS PB2-Plus Subwoofer


    www.dhsspeakerservice.com

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by audiocr381ve View Post
    It's so funny how these old speakers beat out new speakers that I paid a couple of thousand dollars for. Just ridiculous. I'm looking forward to the new tube amp (Rogue Stereo 90 Super Magnum) that will arrive on Monday.
    No offense, but that's not even a remotely fair comparison. You're running the SDA in a room that's ideal for their size and on gear that is an ideal match, both of which are significantly less than ideal for the Totem, and then making a comparison.

    The Hawk are a small speaker, and even though sound bigger than they are, they're not going to defy the laws of physics and will ultimately never be as good in a large space as a larger speaker like the SDA. It doesn't matter what they cost, all the money in the world can't change the laws of physics.

    It's also unfair to compare a stock speaker against a highly modified one.

    I'm not disagreeing with your findings, but you can't really do an unfair comparison and then be shocked and surprised with the outcome...
    Last edited by AsSiMiLaTeD; 07-06-2014 at 01:34 PM.
    Main HT
    Magnepan 1.6QR fronts, POlk R15 surrounds, Pioneer SC-25, Parasound Halo A23, Oppo BDP-105, Panasonic TC-P60ZT60, Sony PS3, Apple TV

    Bedroom System
    Polk Blackstone TL3, Polk PSWi225 Wireless Sub, HK 3490 Integrated, Oppo BDP-103, Sharp Aquos 32" TV, Apple TV

    Office Rig
    27" iMac w/Amarra, AudioQuest Dragonfly 1.2, Focal XS Book, Schiit Valhalla, Cypher Labs Theorem 720, Philips Fidelio X1, Sennheiser HD600, HiFiMan HE-500, B&W P7, LG 47LM7600, Sony PS3, Apple TV

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by AsSiMiLaTeD View Post
    It doesn't matter what they cost, all the money in the world can't change the laws of physics.
    My Dynaudio C1 II's may not defy the law of physics, but they do defy the law of physical appearance vs performance
    Home Theater:Samsung8000-55LED,Pioneer SC35, Pioneer DV-79AVi, Sunfire TGA7201, LSi25, LCi RTSc, LC80i
    2chnl system:Melody 101 tube pre, Pass XA30.5 amp, Usher MD2 speakers, W4S Dac, MG Audio Planus2 speaker cables
    Office rig: Modwright KWI-200 Integrated, Dynaudio C1-II Signatures

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by AsSiMiLaTeD View Post
    No offense, but that's not even a remotely fair comparison. You're running the SDA in a room that's ideal for their size and on gear that is an ideal match, both of which are significantly less than ideal for the Totem, and then making a comparison.

    The Hawk are a small speaker, and even though sound bigger than they are, they're not going to defy the laws of physics and will ultimately never be as good in a large space as a larger speaker like the SDA. It doesn't matter what they cost, all the money in the world can't change the laws of physics.

    It's also unfair to compare a stock speaker against a highly modified one.

    I'm not disagreeing with your findings, but you can't really do an unfair comparison and then be shocked and surprised with the outcome...
    The CRS+'s are not large speakers either but I see what you are saying. This wasn't meant to be a scientific comparison but more of a preference in my room with my system. I should mention the I did pair the Hawks with a Totem Storm subwoofer and still preferred the CRS+'s. It's just a more engaging sound.
    -Shane

  9. #9

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    I can hear the spouses though, the others look better.
    I wonder how many speakers are sold on looks alone?
    POLK SDA 2.3 TLS BOUGHT NEW IN 1990, Gimpod/Sonic Caps/Mills RDO-198
    POLK CSI-A6 POLK MONITOR 70'S ONKYO TX NR-808 SONY CDP-333ES
    PIONEER PL-510A SONY BDP S5100
    POLK SDA 1C BOUGHT USED 2011,Gimpod/Sonic Caps/Mills RDO-194
    ONKYO HT RC-360 SONY BDP S590 TECHNICS SL BD-1

  10. #10

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    Its really hard to beat a well fed, properly placed pair of modded SDA's. No matter what I do, I keep on going back to them.

    Glad you are digging the sound!

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by PolkieMan View Post
    I can hear the spouses though, the others look better.
    I wonder how many speakers are sold on looks alone?
    Sold on looks alone? Not mine. Avoided on looks alone? Quite a few...


    It's hard to spend money on an ugly speaker when you know you can get both in the same package. My wife has told me on more than one occasion I'm not allowed to sell my 6311's - they're just too damn pretty. This coming from a woman who hates all things audio. Then again, she also says the same thing about my monoblocks. Luckily, the combination just works.
    Usher CP-6311, Shuguang S200MK, Shuguang S845MK, Pioneer BDP-51fd, Essence Audio HDACC, Douglas IC's, Douglas Alpha bi-wire SC's, Pangea/Douglas PC's, Epson 8100

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by DSkip View Post
    Sold on looks alone? Not mine. Avoided on looks alone? Quite a few...My wife has told me on more than one occasion I'm not allowed to sell my 6311's - they're just too damn pretty.
    And she picked you...Strike 1

    [/QUOTE]This coming from a woman who hates all things audio.[/QUOTE] Strike 2

    Why in the hell does she keep you around
    Home Theater:Samsung8000-55LED,Pioneer SC35, Pioneer DV-79AVi, Sunfire TGA7201, LSi25, LCi RTSc, LC80i
    2chnl system:Melody 101 tube pre, Pass XA30.5 amp, Usher MD2 speakers, W4S Dac, MG Audio Planus2 speaker cables
    Office rig: Modwright KWI-200 Integrated, Dynaudio C1-II Signatures

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by chandler9a View Post
    Its really hard to beat a well fed, properly placed pair of modded SDA's. No matter what I do, I keep on going back to them.
    Agreed. I presently have a pair of Talon Khoruses that retailed for 14G's in the early 2000's. They do ht duty which means they hardly ever get used and were mainly bought for their outstanding build quality and looks. They cannot hold a candle to my 1.2tl's sound even though they retailed for triple the tl's original retail.
    main set up; modded polk 1.2tl's, recapped mcintosh mc2500, restored yamaha c4, clearaudio emotion, nano +beta woodbody, restored sansui tu9900, sony dvp 9000es, def tech pf18 sub, dedicated listening building

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