GOLDEN EAR Triton Reference


Floorstanding loudspeakers

Golden Ear has recently been taken over by AudioQuest. I'm not surprised, because the sound philosophy of both brands is similar and could be summed up in just four words: music first, sound second. Throw in this mix some serious technical know-how and - voila – there is a flagship that can compete with the best.

Funkce a forma


The Triton Reference has no less than 10 drivers in each cabinet, none of them is ‘a stock model’. The upper part employs what Golden Ear calls the High-Velocity Folded Ribbon tweeter, which is a variation on Heil Air-Motion Transformer, that was modified for better performance and higher sensitivity. The tweeter is surrounded by two 6” polypropylene bass/midrange drivers with ribbed phase plugs to control dispersion. These three drivers are sharing one internal enclosure with angled rear and side walls.

The bottom section of the Triton Reference is all about low frequencies. The front baffle hosts three 6”x10” composite fiber/Nomex quadratic bass drivers, powered by a built-in 1800 W Class D amplifier. The amplifier takes the signal as a high-level input from speaker binding posts, alternatively the low end can be driven via a LFE input just above the speaker posts from an external AV processor. Instead of a bass reflex port, the Triton Reference employs 4 big passive quadratic radiators (2 per each side) that mimic a tuned transmission line. The manufacturer suggests that the Triton reaches down to 12Hz (-6dB). Unlike many other speakers that often overstate the bottom end extension, the Golden Ear Triton Reference’s specification is a real thing, as proved by listening.

The cabinets are tall and slim, and their gravity centre is reinforced by a thick steel plate that is integrated into their plinth. They are available only in piano black.

Nízké frekvence


The Triton Reference is anything but analytical. Well, not in that sense that comes to mind when someone says "analytical". Their voicing is centred low and thick and warm bass is the fundament of their sound. It's the kind of bass one would expect from tubes, the one that does not punch anyone in the chest, rather the one that hugs and surrounds the listener. During my time with the Triton Reference I always had the feeling that temperature in the room rose by several degrees. Back to the analytical thing: despite its embracing warmth, the Golden Ear's bass is actually quite resolving and well proportioned. The balance can be further adjusted by a potentiometer, located at the rear plate. The knob is labelled Subwoofer Level and adjust the amount of bass. The potentiometer has no scale, although its 12 o´clock neutral value is indented. The character of the bass does not change when the knob is turned left or right, but its volume does, making it easier to blend the Triton Reference with the acoustics of a particular listening space.

Čistota rozlišení


The level of resolution of the Triton Reference allows for sufficient insight into the played back programme without becoming fatiguing over time. This may be blessing with many recordings. For example, the ´74 Jailbreak EP (AC/DC, Atlantic) features Bon Scott at his best on the tracks that had not been released on AC/DC´s studio albums. It is a collection, with each track recorded on a different occasion, and the Triton Reference lets you hear that. The speaker does not homogenize the sound, it does not editorialize the nuances. Mehamn, that is found on NeuKlang label sampler (Sarh Chabsad Orchestra), kicks off with an ethnic wind instrument. I have no idea what it is, still the Triton Reference beautifully portrays the blow of breath and air coming in and out of the instrument. It is not overly analytical and it does not step in the way of music.

Tonální věrnost


Astor Piazzolla wrote a lovely piece of music called Primavera Porteňa. It is a part of paraphrased Antonio Vivaldi´s The Four Seasons, which Piazzolla called Cuatro Estanciones Porteňos (Four Seasons of Buenos Aires). The complete cycle is available on Pentatone label´s SACD, beautifully interpreted by Arabella Steinbacher and Muenchener Kammerorchester. Pentatone used an interesting approach, for Piazzolla movements are entwined with Vivaldi´s. The recording is crisp and Steinbacher plays with verve, and the Triton Reference manages to maintain high levels of energy from the beginning till the end. The soundstage is great and vivid, and the violin – in this case Stradivari’s 1716 Booth – soars and sings. The Golden Ear Triton Reference does not disappoint, and, to my surprise, the Piazzolla’s parts come out as fresher and more interesting than the Vivaldi’s, which owns to the Triton’s sense for scale and drama.


Šířka scény
Hloubka scény

The trumpet in When I Love (Christoph Titz, Contrary to Reason) is tonally very attractive through the Triton Reference. The bottom-up voicing supports the warmth of timbre and highlights the emotions, rather than electronics behind them. It is a win-win scenario both for the listener and the music.

From the day of their conception, the Triton Reference were meant as a home cinema high-end speaker. For an audiophile, their sound may be too down to earth, not spectacular enough. But wait – the movies usually take 90 minutes and more. This is much longer that 2-3 music tracks that an audiophile can play before starting to wiggle in his chair and switching off his spectacular speakers for they are too much spectacular. These Golden Ear speakers have been build for entertainment, not for a sonic autopsy; they are for a music lover, not a sound lover.

Cena v době recenze:325 000,- Kč

Doporučení prodejci

AQ s.r.o., Červenka, tel. +420 585 342 232

Připojené komponenty

  • Sources: Arcam CDS50
  • Amplifiers: Amped AAP-1 preamplifier, Amped 2400 power amplifier
  • Interconnects and speaker cables: AudioQuest Earth, AudioQuest Rocket 44
  • Power conditioning: AudioQuest Thunder, Monsoon, Z3 power



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