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Testing

I guess you have formed your own opinion about the design of the GigaWorks S750, so it’s time to check out this system in practice. As usual, I used a special IASCA Competition CD with 37 test audio tracks. This audio CD is universal and serves to evaluate objective parameters (it has tracks with “pink noise”, the maximum sound pressure and so on), but also helps to form a subjective impression. The tracks fall into several categories, depending on the evaluated sound characteristic (voice frequency, spectrum balance, sound scene and so on). Many records are taken from well-known music archives like Telarc, Clarify, Reference, Sheffield and Mapleshade.

I attached the speaker system to two audio cards in my tests, Creative Audigy2 ZS and Creative E-MU 1820. When evaluating the acoustic parameters, we took the signal of the test CD right from the line-out out of the optical DVD drive. Then we used a Euraudio PRO600S audio-analyzer with an external calibrated microphone to measure the gain-frequency characteristic of the speaker system by the sound pressure in real time.

I should confess that listening to the GigaWorks S750 was really an enjoyable experience. First of all, I’d like to mention the excellent power reserve of the system. It seemed to be just unable to release all its potential in the room of our test laboratory. When reproducing SPL Competition audio track, the sound pressure level was 110.1dB and the maximum, peak level was 114.2dB. By the way, no living being suffered from my tests – I performed them on a weekend, when no one else was in our lab. 

Mostly due to the employed type of the acoustic enclosure, the system gave out a good bass with a solid foundation and clear structure. The drums sounded crisp and stiff. The system as if breathed trying to represent the bass instruments truly.

The screenshot below shows the frequency range of the subwoofer during the playback of the “pink noise” test track.


The range of frequencies reproduced by the subwoofer (click to enlarge)

The linearity of the system was up to the mark, too. To examine this parameter, I used three identical test fragments, recorded with peak sound pressure levels of 81, 93 and 105dB. The volume level was set up depending on the data of the audio-analyzer. I should note that a majority of multimedia systems I have ever tested expose a linearity distortion, especially when reproducing the 105dB-SPL fragment.

The excellent satellites contributed much to the crystal-pure voice of the system; they fully embrace the range of middle and high frequencies, while positioning of the sound source is recognizable along the entire stereo panorama. The measured gain-frequency characteristic confirms my words.


The gain-frequency characteristic of the GigaWorks S750
indicates the embracement of the entire frequency range

The screenshot tells you that the misbalance of the gain-frequency characteristic doesn’t exceed 5dB in this range; the spectrum is even, without any slumps. As a result, the system boasts a good timbral balance. The realistic and emotional sound of classical music testifies to the well-placed accents of forte and piano. The system is careful about the genres: jazz sounds expressive, while rock explodes the volume, making you perceive the typical distortions of such music. Well, even trite pop compositions are not as annoying as they would be on a cheap speaker system! :)

Actual (measured) frequencies range

~31.5Hz-20kHz*

Relative unevenness of the gain-frequency characteristic in the 50Hz-15kHz frequency range

~5dB

Threshold frequency for the satellites

~400Hz

Maximum sound pressure (SPL)

~114.2dB

Regrettably, our audio-analyzer doesn’t hear anything above 20,000Hz, so I just couldn’t honestly put 40kHz in the first line of the table.

 
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