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This article was originally published in issue #64
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As a vocal/instrument stage monitor the TSM-10A is an extremely capable performer, and its tight dispersion really does encourage you to stay within the loudspeaker’s sweet spot.
Fantastic sound quality.
Solid build, as expected from HH.
Excellent price point.
Dimensions: 295mm(h) x 480mm(w) x 395mm(d)
Any live performer appreciates the importance of good monitors and the good people at HH realise that in abundance. The TESSEN series active monitors are engineered to give the detail and clarity your performance needs without taking up all the space on stage. Here's Bob Tomas and Nick Jennison to tell us more.
As part of the Midlands-based Headstock Group, the iconic British amplifier brand HH is now primarily focussed on PA loudspeaker systems, from the class-leading TESSEN-X compact, high-power professional systems, through the more affordable, high-performance TESSEN systems through to the cost-effective active and passive Vector systems.
The TESSEN TSM-10A Active Monitor System features a 800W Class-D amplifier that powers an Italian-designed 1” La Voce DF10 compression treble driver and a Kevlar-coned 10” HHLE-426DH bass driver – the combination delivering a seriously loud maximum SPL of 123dB across a frequency range of 76Hz to 20kHz. The TSM-10A’s cabinet is made of lightweight plywood with a 35°-angled solid steel grille front, and is designed primarily to be placed on the floor in front of the musician or singer, where the La Voce driver’s tightly-focussed 70° horizontal/70° vertical dispersion pattern reduces the likelihood of band members hearing each too much of the others’ monitors on stage. An integral top-hat on one side of the cabinet allows it to be stand-mounted for use as a full-range PA, in which application its tight focus would prove very useful in acoustic environments where, for example, you’d need a high level of directivity to avoid exciting reverberant room reflections.
Being a stage monitor, the input side of the TSM-10A isn’t exactly complicated – there’s a balanced, line-level input on a XLR/TRS jack combination connector, a balanced line-level output on an XLR, volume control and a 2-position Preshape switch that voices the unit for monitor or front-of-house duties. There’s also a switch to turn the illuminated front panel logo on or off, a power-on LED and a second LED to indicate that the clip-free limiter is in action – an LED that might occasionally flash if you’re pushing the volume, but that should never be on solidly, unless you want to hear clipping at 123dB SPL!
As a vocal/instrument stage monitor the TSM-10A is an extremely capable performer, and its tight dispersion really does encourage you to stay within the loudspeaker’s sweet spot. Although its 76Hz lower limit means that the TSM-10A would be well-suited to on-stage monitoring of vocals and most acoustic instruments, if you play an instrument with lower ranges, you’d probably be best going for one of its more sizable siblings, such as the 12” woofer-equipped TSM-12A that goes down to 65Hz or, especially if you’re a bassist or a low-tuned baritone guitarist, the full 15” of the TSM-15A that gets you down to 28Hz.
Overall then, the HH TESSEN TSM-10A is an extremely capable performer that has much to offer anyone looking for a high-quality active stage monitor that can also double as a FOH PA loudspeaker. At its price point, the TSM-10A offers very good value for the performance on offer, and it should definitely be on your radar if you’re looking for an active stage monitor at this price point.