Raidho TD1.2 Speakers Review


The series of current reviews continues with the testing of the Raidho TD1.2 flagship stand mount bookshelf speakers. 


TD1.2 


The Raidho TD1.2 model continues the legacy of the highly acclaimed C1.2 and D1.1 loudspeakers. The TD1.2 has been redesigned from the ground up to take sound reproduction to a whole new level while adopting the modern esthetics of the D Series.


The innards of the chassis have been envisioned and executed so they minimize airflow and eliminate reflections inside the cabinet. The new design ensures record low distortion.


But that's not all. Everything inside the cabinet has been redesigned with brand new innovative designs and technologies.


After a long period of research and development, the Raidho TD1.2 features a self-developed proprietary mid/bass driver with a new and unique design of both the magnet system and the rest of the driver unit. 


The new 5-layer tantalum/diamond cone has increased internal damping in combination with the newly developed proprietary edge-wound titanium voice coil, which features a dramatically improved magnetic field and increased power handling. 


Combined with the unique driver design, this is the most powerful underhung motor design on the market (1.1 Tesla/patent pending), resulting in a dramatic increase in dynamic performance.


The TD1.2 also incorporates a newly remade ribbon tweeter used in the Raidho TD4.8 and TD4.2 that features a more powerful magnet system and an optimized acoustic shape of the rear chamber, resulting in much higher resolution and a 35 dB reduction in distortion compared to the already extremely low levels of Raidho's old ribbon tweeter.


Furthermore, the crossover has also been completely reconstructed, focusing on proper (factual) phase response at all frequencies while maintaining optimal impulse response. 


The new driver design and optimized crossover also leave room for smaller amplifiers, as sensitivity has been greatly improved, making the TD1.2 a light load for most amplifiers. 

Operational 


The Raidho TD1.2 was delivered on a pallet with three separate boxes, one for the speakers and the others for the speaker stands. 

The packaging shows that Raidho is an established speaker manufacturer with a long tradition, as everything was well protected, made of high-quality cardboard and foam, and easy to unpack.


The test pair arrived in a captivating walnut burl veneer and with a pair of Raidho Black speaker stands, which must be purchased separately.

The devoted stands for the speakers are very lightweight and unlike many of the dedicated stands, especially well made. They were designed specifically for the lute-like shape of the TD1.2 speakers and complement the esthetic beauty of the Raidho monitors. 


Setting up the speakers was a breeze. The only thing required was the installation of the unique and clever levitation system that lifts the speakers off the stand via a ceramic ball-based floating system mounted and inserted in four locations in the stand.


The speaker stands also feature adjustable feet that can be easily adjusted by turning the knob above the feet, even when the speakers are in place.


The Raidho TD1.2 bass speakers weigh a hefty fifteen kilograms. That's a bit on the weighty side for a bookshelf speaker, but it provides the right amount of damping, stability, and solidity. 


The frequency response ranges from 45 Hz - 50 KHz and they have an impedance of 8 ohms and a sensitivity of 87 dB 2,828 V/m. 

The crossover is stepped slope, phase, and pulse linear and the drivers are crossed at 2.5 kHz.

Every speaker needs some temperature and material stabilization to adjust to the destined room climate, and the TD1.2 also began to breathe more freely after over 200 hours of music playback, after I let the system play with the TD1.2 for a good week before I began my observations and listening notes. 


The Music 


As with any review, here are a few albums/tracks that highlight the merits of the Raidho TD1.2. 

The Raidho TD1.2 speakers' ability to explore the vastness of music was readily apparent in Skin Dive's sonic diversity. 

Michael Franks has had the unique luxury of working with many of the best musicians in his rich career, and each album fetched something refreshingly different. 


Imagine Ron Carter, Mark Egan, Marcus Miller, and Will Lee, all legendary bass guitarists, along with Richard Gottlieb (Pat Metheny Group), Michael Brecker, David Sanborn, and many others on one album.

Skin Dive, Franks' ninth studio album, like each of his releases, is a remarkable and distinct output and the first he co-produced. Most of Franks' albums have been recorded in the best studios and produced by legendary producers and Skin Dive is no exception. 

Skin Dive was heavily influenced by the programmed synthesizers (Yamaha DX -7) and electronic drums of the time, and mixed with the live playing of the top-notch studio musician makes this a very interesting and challenging album both musically and sonically. 

The first thing I noticed when playing Skin Dive through the Raidho TD1.2 speakers was the lack of tension between the instruments, which is almost obligatory with small two-way floor-standing speakers. The Raidho TD1.2 reproduced Skin Dive's electronic and acoustic microcosms with a radiance that was new for this speaker size. It scaled the instruments correctly and allowed them to be fetched with an accurate definition of shape and factor and without faux magnification.

Skin Dive immediately shows when the speaker tuning and the system are not well balanced. Especially in the higher registers. 

With the Raidho TD1.2 speakers, no sheen would push the upper frequencies into the brittle range, which can quickly be the case with many speakers, regardless of price.

The same goes for the rest of the frequency spectrum. No particular EQ bumps or notch filter phenomena. 

Raidho TD1.2's ability to reveal deeper realms of music continues with William DuVall 11.12.21 Live-In-Studio Nashville

The second solo album from William DuVall (of Pearl Jam fame) is an explosive live recorded power trio performance. 


It is an all-analog recording with the unusual rawness and purity recorded in Nashville's famous Welcome To 1979 studio in 2021. 

Perhaps "White Hot" showcases the best the album has to offer in terms of dynamics and sheer dramatic impact. 

Interestingly, with the TD1.2, the bass did not detach itself from the guitar, vocals, and drums, but retained the sheer energy. With many speakers, regardless of size, 11.12.21 Live-In-Studio Nashville can create a sense of alienation from the music due to the energy dew effect. Not so with Raidho's flagship monitors. Once again, the TD1.2 loudspeakers have proven their expert equilibrium of seamless frequency blending.

The TD1.2 speakers resonated with the music, showing its potential and not taking away from its crucial power. It was great to hear the blood flowing from the cabin at the end of "White Hot," so powerful and real that it added to the blood-flowing impact of the entire album.


With Raidho TD1.2 Chris Crocco's One Two Three Four album managed to fill the room with interesting authority. 

The shape of the saxophone, the metallic timbre, and all the subtlety of the sax really came through and not as a sideways swing of reality. The same was true of the soft, metallic percussion with their totally time-dependent quality, which the TD1.2 rendered with metronome precision without taking out the tiny human syncopations. 

Raidho's flagship bookshelves immediately and effortlessly delivered "Ballad For Trane" with their ability to ensure the proper flow of rhythm, tempo, and speed, a delightfully detailed and altogether surprisingly revealing rendition. 


Driving from Everything But The Girl was exellently recorded and produced, giving the album tremendous spatial expansiveness. Bass, drums and saxophone, as well as the accompanying instruments, are evenly spaced and mixed, and all have their clearly defined place in the sonic space. 

For the monitors, the Raidho TD1.2 provided tremendous vertical and horizontal extension and precise sculpting of the instruments. 

The TD1.2's bandwidth, frequency range, and undistorted core allowed all details to be effortlessly reproduced with laser sharpness and no flutter or blurriness.

At the beginning of "Driving," where the pulsating echoes of the left and right voices give a good sense of how well the sound spreads vertically and horizontally in the listening room, the focused and pinpoint quality of the TD 1.2 showed that these flagships could do it with ease and with spades. 

"Driving" critical moment that defines the quality of any loudspeaker take place few times in the song, when all the instruments come together.

If the loudspeakers are designed, tuned and executed correctly,  the sonic details and instruments do not collide, but blend seamlessly into a harmonious whole, without touchign the essence of timbre, tone and colour. 

And Raidho's top-of-the-line models really hit the spot in this regard. They offer both a harmonically rich, but not saturated, and a noticeable, transparent, yet natural higher order sound reproduction. 

Even without the other virtues of the TD1.2, this characteristic alone makes them outstanding speakers. 


The TD1.2's richness of tone color and exceptional dynamic performance continued with Berlioz Charles Munch - Boston Symphony Orchestra - Symphonie Fantastique, where the orchestral fragments were rendered with much more verve than expected. 

Of course, given the size of the monitors, one cannot expect the full captured energy of the orchestra, but the Raidho TD1.2 projected a prominent orchestral feel, especially with hard-to-reproduce brass instruments that had the necessary weight and, most importantly, an undisputed metallic feel (timbre). 

The orchestra, for a refreshing change (with monitors), did not sound like distant inhabitants of the sound sphere. But for that, the TD1.2s had to be driven with enough healthy power and they had to be carefully placed in the listening room. In my case, more closer to the back wall. 

The weight and mass of the orchestra were more akin to a small floor-standing speaker, giving it enough size to be included in the movement of the music. 

Surprisingly, the TD1.2 was spared the dynamic torpor that can all too easily be a leitmotif in smaller bookshelf speakers. 

In contrast, the Boston Symphony Orchestra's flamboyance under Munch's baton was a highly stimulating affair with the TD1.2's readily dynamic crux. 

The Raidho flagships put on a titanic performance with a greater sense of space than they should be given considering their size. Again, with an energetic impetus that mimicked the larger speakers, topped with a unique act of disappearance. 

The Conclusion 


It's quickly apparent that Raidho TD1.2 was designed from the start to meet the exacting demands of audio aficionados seeking state-of-the-art stand mount bookshelf speakers, but as with any high-end audio product, speculation about it can lead to inconclusive results. These speakers must be experienced at their best to fully understand their potency. 


While I have tried them and found great synergy with low-power amplifiers, I prefer more power, as I do with the Radio stand-mounts. 

Both the Raidho tweeter and mid/bass driver are designed not to distort even at high volume, so the music can be experienced in its full glory.


This is important because each album, or to make it more complicated, each track may require its own volume to be fully appreciated. There is simply no single universal loudness setting for music, and so the remote control or preamp knob next to the listening position is a must for full enjoyment. And combined with the TD1.2's ability to play loud and undistorted, some tracks/albums need to be played at a very high volume to be fully enjoyed.



The TD1.2s was designed from the start to leave no sonic fingerprint. Many small monitor speakers can be deceptive and inaccurate when it comes to presenting music on a larger scale, and also by delivering false, one-note bass. Raidho's flagship monitors logically can not deliver gargantuan low-frequency reproduction, but the TD1.2 still delivers the proper amount of lower register foundation that is important for an immersive high-end audio experience. 


The TD1.2 also offers a better-than-average approach to the soundstage and, above all, ensures that no important information is lost, as the speakers are the last and first contact with the listener. 


The crucial difference between a state-of-the-art bookshelf and a mediocre one is not the price, but the ability to escape the singular lens projection, and when it comes to small speakers,  for a change, TD1.2s were not impartial in delivering the important scales. 


Raidho flagships have allowed me to better appreciate the value of the space between instruments and immerse myself in the music because they were designed to reflect the essence without deforming it.

The sound quality matched my preferences and locking and loading was far easier than I am used to with smaller speakers, regardless of price. The Raidho TD1.2 continues the brand's rich heritage with a premium bookshelf speaker that conveys the factual rather than apparent realities of music with ease, which is often an ad hoc hard or impossible task to achieve with smaller two-way speakers. 


Raidho does not need to forcibly distinguish itself as an avant-garde speaker manufacturer, as the brand has already carved out a remarkable place for itself in the high-end audio industry with its iconic speaker designs, technology, and esthetics that everyone instantly recognizes. 

The Raidho TD1.2 is an outstanding specimen that provides an exquisite engagement with the nature of music, feels musically authentic, and will make tech-savvy aficionados happy and satisfy the often conflicting demands of audiophiles and music lovers. 


The Raidho TD1.2 can put performers in the real room and make instruments objectively real when equipped with the appropriate high-end audio components that keep untouched required fundaments but avoid sonic deductions that might occur if the engineering and voicing of the speakers were wrong. 


There's no denying that the search for the holy grail of high-end will continue as new technologies, materials, parts, and products are developed and brought to life, but TD2.1 already represents a kind of sonic umwelt, a distinctive quality where everything comes together in one place and where the music sounds right, its energy feels right and a comprehensive harmonic acoustic synthesis is created.


As the flagship Raidho bookshelf speaker, the TD2.1 has a price tag to match, but it incorporates a wealth of technologies drawn from a rich heritage and employs many newly discovered approaches and materials that clearly set it apart from the crowd.


For what it represents musically and performance-wise, I give the Raidho TD2.1 speakers the 2022 Mono & Stereo Upper Echelon Class Product Award.  


Prices

  • Raidho TD1.2 Black 20.500 €
  • Raidho TD1.2 Walnut Burl or personalized color 22.900 €
  • Raidho speaker stand Silver 2.500 €
  • Raidho speaker stand Black 2.950 €

Technical specifications

  • Stand mount bookshelf speaker
  • Size (WxHxD): 200 x 360 x 410 mm
  • Weight: 15 Kg
  • Freq. reponse: 45 Hz – 50 KHz
  • Impendance: 8 ohm
  • Sensitivity: 87 dB 2.828 V/m
  • Crossover: 2.5 kHz; Stepped slope, phase and impulse linear
  • Enclosure: Ported
  • Drive units: 1 x TD Ribbon tweeter, 1 x 115 mm, Tantalum-Diamond mid-bass driver
  • Finish: Black piano; All possible paint colors; Walnut burl veneer
  • Amplification: less than 20 W Raidho writes: "Though we have seen excellent results with small tube amplifiers".

Contact 

DANTAX Radio
Bransagervej 15
9490 Pandrup
Denmark

Phone: +45 98247677