REVIEW PART I: Triangle Titus 202 Speakers (LONG)

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Eujin, Apr 3, 2002.

  1. Eujin

    Eujin Supporting Actor

    Mar 19, 2001
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    I've spent the last couple of months reading reviews and auditioning speakers to replace my Paradigm Monitor 5 v.2. One speaker that caught my eye recently was the French Triangle Titus, a mini-monitor type 2-way (front-ported).
    I'd first heard the Triangles last summer, while shopping around for a CD player, paired with a Rega Planet 2000. Unfortunately for me, the Rega was a bit out of my price range (I ended up with the NAD 521 which I think is the best thing under $500) but the tremendous performance of the Rega+Triangle combo stayed with me. Interest in the Triangles resurfaced last week, when I saw that Stereophile had given the Titus a Class B recommendation. At an MSRP of $495, the Titus weighs in at about a quarter of the price of other Class B recommended speakers. To clarify, the recommendation was in the Class B Restricted LF sub-category, meaning that these speakers did not have the final say in low-end extension. For the record, the Titus' published spec has a low-end of 60Hz. I'm not a bass-head when it comes to 2-channel music listening and when it comes to HT, I have a sub to help out, so the 60Hz spec is not a problem for me. If you need more bass, the Titus' bigger brothers should provide more low-end extension without changing the overall sound very much as they share the same tweeter and mid-woofer components.
    Ok, so on Good Friday (and a darn good one it was too) I set out for my local dealer. I wanted to hear the Triangles and PSB Image 4T side by side (the 4T earned a Class C rating from ST). I'd also heard that Triangles had become somewhat hard to come by due to the paucity of dealers in this country and the increased demand brought by its Class B rating in ST. Well, I was extremely lucky in that my dealer had just one pair left in stock (ordered 6 pairs, got 2, sold one). Let me just say that both my wife and I were blown away by the audition. While we didn't really intend to buy speakers that day, we ended up going home with a brand new box of Triangles.
    Skip to today. It's now the 6th day of my Triangle Titus 202 ownership and I'm still in the process of breaking them in. From the many posts over at and the few reviews (most recently at I'd read, the Triangles require about 100+ hours before they really start to play. This is basically why I'm calling this post REVIEW PART I, and I'll post a follow-up when the break-in period is done.
    So what do they sound like? Bearing in mind that my Tituses are still virtually in out-of-the-box condition, they still qualify in my book as AMAZING. Before I go any further, let me just say that the speakers I was most seriously considering up to the day I auditioned the Triangles were Paradigm Studio 20s and Studio 40s, which cost considerably more (depending on finish). Here's what I love about the Triangles:
    IMAGING: These speakers image like no other speaker I've heard--at any price (including B&W Nautilus 800). My listening position is fairly near-field (about 8 ft.) and the speakers are positioned firing forward without toe-in. Vocals just emerge from dead center between the speakers and the sonic image is incredibly vivid and solid. Even when I get up and approach the speaker plane, the image continues to hold and is unwavering. On well-recorded acoustic vocals, this can be almost creepy.
    CLARITY & DETAIL: Again, this sounds like such a cliche, but I'm eagerly listening to old CDs that I hadn't heard in a while because I can now hear so much more detail. There is way more separation of instruments within the soundstage (more on that below) and much more "air" at high frequencies. If you're a detail person, you'll be happy as a clam with the Triangles.
    SOUNDSTAGE: In a word, HUGE. I now feel that my front soundstage spans the entire width of living room (about 20 ft.). And there is also depth galore. Music is much more engaging now and I find it is only with great difficulty that I can hit the "STOP" button on my remote.
    BASS: As I mentioned above, the Triangle Titus 202 is not the last word in bass extension. However, it's bass reproduction is superb: clean, tight, fast and accurate. It's got a very punchy feel and very well articulated rhythm.
    SUMMARY CONCLUSIONS & CAUTIONS: Can you tell I love this speaker? It's an absurd steal at $495 (and yes, the speaker and components are made in France). My main reason for buying these speakers was to improve my 2-channel music--my HT experience has also improved by the same margin and I'm going to get the matching Triangle Sextan center next (the Titus is part of Triangle's theater-oriented line). However, I must warn that this will not be the speaker for everyone. It is revealing to the extreme and if you have a weak component in the chain, I suspect the Triangles will let you know about it. Also, these are extremely clear and neutral speakers. If you're used to or prefer a lot of warmth created by speaker euphonics, you will likely find the Triangles dry or bright. They're not bright, but I can see how some might describe them that way. I've heard that they can sound even better when paired with tube electronics, but I don't have tube equipment so I can't comment first-hand. The other potential issue is the amount of break-in time required at 100+ hours. Like I said, I'm still in the break-in period so I look forward to even better performance as the days pass. However, until proper break-in is achieved, highs can DEFINITELY sound bright, particularly anything with strings.
    I welcome any question or comments that fellow HTFers might have.
    Associated Equipment:
    NAD 521 CD player
    Sony SCD-CE775 SACD Changer
    JVC XV-SA75GD DVD-V/DVD-A player
    Malata N966 DVD player
    Amplification: Harman/Kardon AVR320
    Patricia Barber "Nightclub"
    Norah Jones
    Lorna Hunt
    Greg Brown "Covenant"
    Bach "Concerto for 2 Violins"
    Vivaldi "Four Seasons" (Kennedy)
    Miles Davis "Kind of Blue" SACD
    Mozart "Sinfonia Concertante" SACD
    Bach "Goldberg Variations" SACD (Perahia)
    Coleman Hawkins "The Hawk Flies High"
    Portishead "Dummy"
    Diana Krall--various
    Pete Yorn "Music for the morning after"
    Hole "Celebrity Skin"
    Calvin Russell "Crossroads"
    Joni Mitchell "Both Sides Now" DVD-A
  2. Tommy_Y

    Tommy_Y Extra

    Aug 24, 2002
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    Eujin -

    Did you ever do a PART II (post break-in period) review? I just picked a pair and think they are the best thing since sliced bread.

    I listened to a lot of speakers and the Triangles clearly stood out as the cream of the crop. Other speakers sound good when you hear them by themselves but the moment you hear the Triangles you just say WOW.

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