LINN Tukan Floorstanding Speakers

Tukan

User Reviews (41)

Showing 1-10 of 41  
kugs22   Audio Enthusiast [Aug 01, 2007]
Strength:

See above. Note that the Tukans use the same tweeter as Linn's most expensive speaker made at the time of production. The tweeter is amazing.

Weakness:

See above, plus lack of ultimate macrodynamics (they're little!)

When you buy and sell on Audiogon as I do, you don't have much of an "investment" in the gear, as you can trade it fairly evenly if you don't like it. I could sell these tomorrow for $400. So I say with some objectivity that I have never heard a monitor anywhere near this price - and that means up to $1,500 - that approaches the Tukan if matched properly. It is just a little slice of heaven.

First, these speakers deserve to be treated correctly. They need good, welded metal stands. They need to be brought out into the room to create the soundstage - at least three (and in my case five) feet.

Second, they cannot be used alone; they need a sub. This sort of goes with my advice about pulling them into the room. That is, you can't force bass out of these by sticking them on a wall (you can't get a decently deep soundstage doing this anyway, and I don't know why people even try). They don't have any bass. They don't pretend to have bass. But what they do have (down to around 70 or 80 hz) is spot-on. However, alone, they sound thin and somewhat "shouty." I admit that this "shoutiness" at high listening levels (which many have spoken about with this speaker) doesn't entirely disappear when subs are used with them, but the problem is greatly diminished. In any event, one sub is mandatory, and two (such as I have) is sublime. The reason is that because the Tukans aren't trying to go low, there is no crossover problem - no "doubling." It is easy to set and find the correct bass response. Because the punch and drive of the bass is determined primarily by frequencies well above 70 hz., the bass remains tight and tuneful. This configuration (rather than floor standers) gives much greater control over room response, and flexibility in placement - bass is always the hardest thing to control in any room.

When set up properly, there is really no reason to want "better" speakers. Oh, they certainly exist, but the fun factor of these things is just incredible. They are better to my ears than: Totem Model 1s, ProAc Response 1, Opera Duettas, Von Schweikert VR1s, and a bunch of others that have run through my system over the years. Better in the sense of 1) fast 2) tuneful 3) emotional 4) tonally balanced 5) non-resonant 6) uncolored 7) detailed 8) throwing an exceptionally deep and wide soundstage. In fact, their stage size borders on spooky when you tweak the room just right. I've heard this on much more expensive systems, but with the exception of my old planar Eminent Tech LFT VIIIs, nothing in this price range. They let the notes go; they boogie; they send you to the concert hall to listen to Chopin.

I bought them because I have a small listening room, and I didn't want to get into large speakers. As noted, I chose to control the bass response myself with subs rather than get stuck with what a manufacturer thought might work down to 30 hz in most environments (not including mine, of course). If you find yourself in this situation, give the Tukans a shot, and spend the dough on dual subs (I can guarantee you there is no going back from dual subs!). You'll spend less than $1,500 on the whole shee bang and have a powerful, fun system to listen to - of course, there is a ton of additional spacial information down deep, so driving these things with the subs is just over-the-top good for the money.

I've tried to trade up for a year to other speakers - they're still with me. You sing, you tap your feet, you listen closely to a beautiful passage - in short, you are engaged directly with the music. I'm some impressed.

Similar Products Used: See above.
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
zenfishbike   AudioPhile [Apr 23, 2004]
Strength:

Musical. Punch. Quckness. Spacial Presence. Detail. Texture. Active.

Weakness:

Mid Bass

Reading the other reviews it was interesting to see how many others also felt no further need to shop speakers. Nice to see so many others confirming my feelings. I'm done. No need to look further unless money is no object. The next step up is going to be a quantum leap in cash. I want to emphesize the Tukans have quickness, punch, and musicality I haven't heard anywhere else. Spacial presence, detail and texture is incredible. You will literally FEEL things like fingers on strings, breath between words, spit and tongues against teeth. Passive Tukans are very very good but they can be a tad harsh and resticted when compared to active. Active with Linn amps and a quality source and you will be done, just like the rest of us. You can tweek the final result with your cables. The Rel Stata III is a good fast sub that can keep pace with the Tukans but the Rel Stadium III is noticably better at bringing it all home. The other Rel's arent fast enough. Stay with the older tweeters for everything I just described. Going with the so called upgraded tweeter out of the Katan and Espek line gives up the magic. I also recommend keeping it all in the Linn family. The amps do add to the magic and are designed to accomodate the active cards all at a somewhat reasonable price. No need to risk a break in the magical chain. I run the identical drivers in Linn's 5140 tower speakers in my theater actively and they are the final answer because they completely fill in the lower end epecially with the larger Rel. I have another set of 5140's idle on the sidelines because I still love to revel in the awesome simplicity of the active Tukans in my seperate listening room. They put a big old grin on my face every darn time.

Similar Products Used: Linn 5140 Linn Katan Linn Espek Linn Keilidh Linn Ninka
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Terry Lee   Audio Enthusiast [Nov 20, 2002]
Strength:

perfect speakers in its size

Weakness:

none

Incredible souding speakers. I purchased a pair of used in beautiful and high quality rosenut finish with $300 from local dealer. When listen to violin playing, I am totally right in the concert hall. A true monitor!!

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Leo   Audio Enthusiast [Oct 28, 2002]
Strength:

Build quality Detials Clarity soundstage

Weakness:

bass details are slightly lower, but better than anything this size

Couples years ago I picked up a Linn LK100 amp in a second hand hifi shop. Before that I didn't know this name. The little amp's quality surprised me, as I was used to big pieces of equipment. Later I traded that amp for a LK85, and buy a used Genki CDP. i would like to make it a all-Linn setup, so I went out searching for Linn speakers. I heard about Tukan, but it was already discontinued. I auditioned the newer models. But they didn't impress me. Then there was a stock clearence of a Dynaudio dealor. So I bought a pair of Audience 52, which were quite good, given their size and price. Then 2 weeks ago someone was selling his Classik CDP and his pair of Tukan. After bargaining we agreed on $285. I drove 10 miles to take it, 10 miles to go back home, set it up and test it quickly, before I went to airport to picy up my wife's brother-in-law. My wife's brother-in-law stayed in my home for 3 days. Except went out for dining, he spent all his stay playing with my hifi, until 2am. He was wondering how thses little monsters can be so good, and in his eyes I knew he wanted to get a pair for himself. My listening space is less than 100 square feet. So floorstander is not a good idea. I have tried it, but found that too bloomy, and very difficult to position. Compared to the Audience 52, in the same environment, you can easily tell who is the winner. Audience 52 is in itself the best one in its price range. To beat it you need something triple the price, like Contour 1.3SE from the same manufacturer or B&W 805. It is well-balanced, lots of details, and gives lots of bass for its size. It tends to bloom if you position too close to walls though. Tukan is another breed. It has a tint of warmth. Its clarity and details beat many $2000plus speakers. In terms of details of the Audience 52 is almost the same. But the Tukan shows its class by its openness, wide sound stage, and depth. It is well-controlled. I agreed to some review that its upper bass and lower mid lack some definition. It is, but only very slightly. Bi-wire seems to improve it quite a lot. Mat be I will try bi-amp later.

Similar Products Used: Celestion, Rogers, Dynaudio
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
russwollman   Audio Enthusiast [Sep 09, 2002]
Strength:

Clarity, detail, elegance, compactness, the David among Goliaths.a

Weakness:

Be careful removing the grille cover material. It can snag on a speaker corner and rip. Sometimes the rubber band securing the material will break at the seam. At the price, things like this should not happen.·

Spending $700 for a pair of little bitty black speakers seemed nutty at first, but the Tukans have acquired classic status. Such an wonderful, honest little box! I recently spotted a pair on eBay and bid though I didn't need them. Though I lost the auction, I pursued the idea and bought another pair to keep just in case. These are great little speakers from great Scots. I will visit that country someday. There must be magic there...

Similar Products Used: Tukans are unique. Other manufacturers may try to parrot, er, pirate, the design, but, aw shucks, you get the idea.k
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Rana   Audio Enthusiast [Sep 03, 2002]
Strength:

Plays music, doesn't just reproduce sounds. I will have to spend thousands to improve on this baby.

Weakness:

You really need to hear them active to appreciate what these Tukans are capable of...by completely taking out the crossover boards.

Well, I had a Linn Kan IV bought new, then I found my first Linn Tukan in black with the older tweeter. It was not really an improvement in sound over the Kan IV, being noticeably leaner in character than its cheaper sibling. I then found a bargain Tukan in cherry with slight cabinet damage on Ebay. I bought these and was lucky to get the last incarnation with the improved tweeter which actually did make a noticeable improvement. Now....after reading the Naim forum, I decided to buy a Naim IXO active crossover to rip out the internal crossovers, then directly wire the drive units to the terminals. This is NOT the Linn way of takinf Tukans active. But what a transformation! The sound is even more musical, images are very palpable, almost tactile, although not with class-leading depth (something I don't worry about anyway, 'cos my Tukans are against the rear wall, on Kan 2 stands), and the bass is now better defined and deeper. Purcussion and plucked strings are totally vivid. I am really impressed and very satisfied now with the music I am hearing.

Similar Products Used: Too many to list...none of them come close to active Tukans
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
keith   Audio Enthusiast [May 09, 2000]
Strength:

Very musical, soudstaging, rhythmic clean bass, elegant looks.

Weakness:

Highs a teeny bit tizzy, missing a half octave of bass

Why I bought them:

I was auditioning small "apartment" speakers at a nice place near Chicago back in 1996. The store had closed after I was finished and the nice gentlemen there "treated" me to listening to a system composed of Von Schweikert VR4 speakers, Cary Audio 300B amps, a Melos preamp and forgotten brand of CD player. I listened to a Holly Cole CD for a few minutes - lotsa detail, great bass, etc., but it didn't capture my fancy.

A week later I was in Linn Hi-Fi in Chicago first to audition some inexpensive JPWs. The dealer Chris took an interest in my tastes and said that I really should audition the Tukans. "$800 for a speaker that small?" I said.

We sat down in the least expensive room to hear a system composed of Linn's Mimik CD player, Majik integrated amp and the Tukans resting on some attractive Sound Organisation stands. He just happened to put on the same Holly Cole CD that I heard in the other hi-fi shop.

Within less than a minute I heard what I was missing in the big megabuck system - just a sense of musical flow and rhythm that the Tukans presented with ease. That $3500 Linn base system blew the doors off the $20K+ system in terms of sheer musical presentation.

I bought a used pair on the spot for $100 off and never regretted it. For the same price, there are other speakers that reproduce deeper bass at a greater volume and impress your friends at parties, but, there are none that make better music.

Caveats are that the bass on those speakers can get swallowed up in a large room (anything bigger than 15x15 or so), and the tweeter CAN be a little edgy - DO NOT run them off cheap amps! I ran them with great results in each of the following amp setups:

Linn Majik
Linn LK100
Linn Majik + LK100 (biamp)
2 Linn LK140 (active)
Exposure XV

But these speakers have a hidden attribute: the ability to run them active by disconnecting the in-speaker crossover and replacing that crossover with a more refined version between the amp and the preamp. This directly connects the amp to the speaker drivers and removes the power-robbing crossover components.

Linn offers boards for running these speakers actively, either in their own amps, or to place in Linn's Tunebox should you want to use someone else's amps. I have heard that naim's crossovers also work with these speakers very well - in fact, I know of someone running the Tukans actively with 4 naim 135 amps and a naim SNAXO 2-4 crossover powered by a naim Supercap - that's $14,000 of amplification and another $6,000 of crossover behind these $800 speakers - that's how good they are.

I also converted them to active mode in the last year that I had them by installing Linn Aktiv boards into a pair or Linn's excellent $1,350/ea LK140 amps and paired with a REL Strata II subwoofer set suprisingly low.

The best way to describe the change is that I lost interest in any other speaker once I had this done - I had no reason to look anymore. The amount of music released by active Tukans cannot be beat by any speaker within a magnitude of its price. The bass goes down another 10Hz and gets a reasonable amount of slam, any edge is completely removed from the treble, the soundstage expands to waaaaay behind the speaker, and their ability to reproduce music's rhythm and pace goes up several notches. As great as the passive Tukans are, the active Tukans are a whole 'nuther speaker.

5 star value
4 star overall (passive)
5 star overall (active)

Similar Products Used: Spica TC60, Dynaudio Contour 1.3 MkII, B&W DM302, DCM TF350, B&W DM7 MkII, Vandersteen 2b
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
Ken   Audio Enthusiast [Mar 24, 2000]
Strength:

Astonishing reproduction of vocals and acoustic instruments. Excellent clarity and imaging, fine build quality.

Weakness:

At $800, hard to think of any.

I don't know quite what it is about these little speakers that's so engaging... like another reviewer below, I'm not entirely a fan of Linn gear, and am not impressed with the rest of their speakers, but somehow the Tukans are very different. They've got the fabulous detail and imaging of an NHT, but they aren't stark, nor bright in the least -- if anything, they may color the music a little bit warm -- but talk about being worth it. They reproduce vocals and acoustic instruments in a resonant, emotive way that I've heard in no other speaker, ever. In that respect, I've never heard better at any price.

Tukans perform well when mated to a good sub, and run full range. It allows you to pull them a little away from the wall, which cleans up the low end a bit -- they can be a little muddy otherwise.

Of the aforementioned similar products used, all performed well and deserve a look except the B&W602... I didn't find the sound from them terribly involving, or genuinely exceptional in any way. Rotel gear mates well with the Tukan, as does an all-Linn system.

Like another reviewer, I bought these from The Audio Gallery in Lake Oswego, OR. Wonderful people, excellent service. If your interested and near Portland, you can find them at 503.699.8888, 16318 SW Bryant Road.

Similar Products Used: Totem Arro, Vienna Acoustic Hayden, Naim Intro, NHT1.5, B&W 602...
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
George Strait   Audiophile [Jan 17, 2000]
Strength:

Accurate, musical

Weakness:

bass is not big, but is accurate

Beautiful speaker, in every respect! You cannot touch it in this price range, or even double it, you still won't find one that sounds so...right. It is just a work of art. What else can ya' say?

Similar Products Used: Paradigm, B&W, NHT
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Nick   Audio Enthusiast [Feb 10, 2000]
Strength:

Cheap for the performance they give, Small stature but big sound

Weakness:

Lack of low end

Hooked up in bi-wire fashion to my Classik, the Tukans are great in my small bedroom. Compared to the crappy, horn driven Klipsh speakers I used to have, they are a massive improvement. Compared to the Aerial 7b, they lack the bass and a tad bright. And after auditioning some Wilson Cubs, I left thinking, suckers, my Tukans can to that.

Similar Products Used: Various Klipsh, Aerial 7b, Wilson Cub
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
Showing 1-10 of 41  

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