Tannoy’s timeless Kensington Gold Reference continues the marque’s heritage of blending time-honoured values with cutting edge performance. Its bold cabinet of finest mahogany plywood is extensively braced to house Tannoy’s flagship 250mm (10.00”) Gold Reference Dual Concentric™ driver. It’s high-efficiency compression driver with 50mm (2.00”) heat-treated dome, Alnico motor system and new, stiffer cone materials create outstanding dynamics, spacious sound staging and exceptional musical articulation. The flagship 250 mm (10.00”) Dual with its Alnico magnets, identified by its PepperPot Waveguide, is fitted with the latest Tannoy GR cone material, comprising a bespoke paper pulp infused with fibres to increase its rigidity. Combined with the new 50mm (2.00”) aluminium-magnesium alloy cone, the Kensington GR Dual offers an expansive sound stage, extremely high power handling and class-leading musical communication.
The Kensington GR is set to follow its predecessor models as being the bestselling Prestige loudspeaker for its outstanding performance, small footprint and elegant design. To match the new Alnico GR Dual, the Kensington crossover has been extensively upgraded with custom-specification ICW ClarityCap™ MR capacitors, low loss laminated core inductors and thick-film resistors, before the entire unit is Deep Cryogenically Treated. This technology brings a wealth of benefits to the Kensington GR sound, including more spacious soundstage, crisper micro dynamic detailing and an exceptional natural HF response. The Kensington GR is hand built in the time-honoured Tannoy fashion to ensure that attention to detail and unique styling go hand in hand in maintaining the exclusive appeal of this highly respected loudspeaker. It’s 18mm thick birch ply baffle and rear panel are extensively detailed with walnut inlays and machined metal trim. Easy room placement, adjustable HF power and luxury oiled veneer finish with machined metal trim ensure Kensington Gold Reference is as easy to live with as it is exhilarating to listen to. Gold Reference takes Tannoy’s Kensington to new levels of refinement in every respect.
Introduction – Prestige GR
Over forty-five years on from the introduction of the world famous Monitor Gold Dual Concentric™ driver, Tannoy has launched a new benchmark loudspeaker range; the Prestige Gold Reference. This major upgrade to the entire Prestige SE series of loudspeakers marks another significant chapter in Tannoy’s illustrious history. Gold Reference (GR) further refines the Dual Concentric™ driver concept, brings cutting edge materials and engineering technologies to the Prestige range and leverages the sonic benefits of Deep Cryogenic Treatment. The result is a captivating and unique range of loudspeakers that further improves and refines the world-renowned acoustic excellence of Tannoy’s Prestige range.
Of course, the sumptuous traditional design and time-honoured method of construction of the famous Prestige cabinets remains unchanged. These bespoke pieces of fine acoustic furniture have been hand crafted from solid wood and hardwood ply laminates by Tannoy’s finest artisans for many decades.
Prestige Gold Reference continues to proudly boast the world’s finest traditional loudspeaker cabinets.
In addition to the luxury real-wood veneering with hand-rubbed oil finish, the new GR models benefit from revised intricate wood-working detail, new contrasting wood inlays and new metal trim pieces. The driver trim parts, HF adjustment panel and rear boiler-plate are machined from billet aluminium and hard anodised in a luxury gold finish. Available in five models from the compact Tannoy Stirling Gold Reference up to the magnificent 530litre/138kg Westminster Royal Gold Reference, high power handling, high sensitivity and breath-taking clarity and musical communication are the common theme across the range. With point-source articulation, precision imaging, extended natural bass and incredible dynamics, Gold Reference marks another significant upgrade of the long-running Tannoy Prestige range.
To mark the Prestige GR milestone, and as a celebration of the company’s proud heritage, the famous original Tannoy ‘lighting strike’ logo has been incorporated into trims on all models throughout the Prestige GR series. The design element of the lightning strike logo lends itself to the timeless traditional styling of the Prestige GR models and reminds listeners of the proud heritage of Tannoy brand built over more than eight decades of audio innovation.
The new Prestige Gold Reference series marks the most sweeping advancements in Dual Concentric™ technology for more than 40 years. Gold Reference revives the spirit of the ground-breaking Monitor Gold, but pushes performance even further than the previous SE designated models by leveraging the best of 21st century materials science and computer-aided design. With many Tannoy innovations and bespoke technologies trickled down from Tannoy’s flagship Kingdom Royal development project, the GR series drivers stand as Tannoy’s most advanced Duals to date.
At the top of Tannoy’s new Prestige GR range, both the Canterbury GR and Westminster Royal GR are fitted with a newly developed cone material. To increase rigidity across the larger surface area of these 15.00 inch Dual Concentric drivers, the fibrous mix within the cone material has been revised to realise further improvements in the cone’s mechanical characteristics. Modern imaging technology affords incredibly detailed analysis of cone mechanics under load and many versions of the cone pulp mix were evaluated prior to the final selection of this vital component. As with all revisions to Tannoy’s important Prestige series models, the final selection of material was the result of critical auditioning with a wide range of music. Canterbury GR and Westminster Royal GR models now offer an even more dynamic presentation than their predecessors, with reduced colouration and an incredibly natural mid band response.
A new HF compression driver is incorporated in all Prestige GR models featuring Tannoy’s Alnico powered motors and Pepperpot Waveguide. Fitted to the Kensington GR, Canterbury GR and Westminster Royal GR, the design is a direct result of research undertaken for the Kingdom Royal project. Many months of R&D were spent testing and auditioning numerous alloys and heat treatment configurations before final selection of a heat-tempered aluminium alloy. The domes are terminated with a vented Mylar surround, which affords better energy termination at the diaphragm boundary. The result is even greater transparency and linearity across the driver’s working spectrum, delivering an even more refined and natural sound than previous Prestige Duals.
To further enhance the driver’s mechanical integrity and integration with the cabinet, all GR Duals are built on a new cast aluminium chassis with multi-point fixings. Tannoy’s signature ‘Tulip’ and ‘Pepperpot’ HF Waveguides feature across the GR series, depending on model, further enhancing the point source symmetrical dispersion properties of the driver.
On the inside, Prestige crossovers have been improved across the range and fine-tuned to integrate with the new GR Duals. ICW ClarityCap MR capacitors are used in the Westminster Royal, Canterbury and Kensington GR models but, unique to Tannoy, the leadout wires are PTFE insulated 99.99% single strand silver, extruded to our specification. The result of ICW’s own ground breaking two-year research program, these devices offer excellent self-damping characteristics and class-leading performance. Revised low loss laminated core inductors and thick film resistors are used throughout the Prestige GR series crossovers, chosen for their ability to resolve micro dynamic detailing.
Each fully assembled Prestige GR crossover is Deep Cryogenically Treated (DCT) as a single unit to improve the audio characteristics through components, cabling and solder joints holistically. The process involves freezing the entire assembled crossover to -190degrees and thawing at a controlled rate to remove micro stresses in the crystal structure of all conductors in the crossover. The improvements in musical cohesion and smoothness made it an essential part of the Prestige GR upgrade. Around the back of each Prestige GR loudspeaker, the GR series boasts Tannoy’s unique fifth speaker terminal. This can be used to electrically ground the driver chassis to the amplifier, dramatically reduce potential for radio frequency interference and further enhancing midrange clarity. Westminster Royal GR, Canterbury GR and Kensington GR use the very latest loudspeaker terminals from WBT, the NextGen™ WBT-0703. These high-end loudspeaker terminals ensure perfect signal transfer from the amplifier to the Prestige GR loudspeaker.
To celebrate Prestige Gold Reference and the latest evolution of the world famous Monitor Gold Dual Concentric driver, Prestige GR cabinets have been enhanced with a range of external styling updates to reflect the quality and craftsmanship within. Light reworking of the cabinet finish included milled and machined detailing in the timber, new veneer inlays within the front baffle of certain models and precision machined metalwork, hard-anodised with a gold finish. Each cabinet is lovingly crafted from solid timber hardwoods and ply laminates and finished in a combination of lacquer and oil depending on model. The finish can be maintained for decades using Tannoy’s Prestige wood wax-oil and a soft cloth. Matching grilles with complementary woven cloth material are included with each model. The return of Tannoy’s famous ‘lightning strike’ logo establishes the Prestige Gold Reference series as another landmark in Tannoy’s illustrious history.