T&T Enceintes Acoustiques

A young speaker brand with a long history…

By Roy Gregory

We live in a world with way, way too many loudspeaker brands – way too many of which are disturbingly similar. All too often, they’re also disturbingly disappointing. Which makes the discovery of a new, distinct and distinctly individual loudspeaker line something that’s both exciting and to be celebrated.

T&T Enceintes Acoustiques is based in Valence, the current gastronomic heart of France – if not the world, if Anne-Sophie Pic’s one-woman campaign for global domination is anything to go by. The company has been producing loudspeakers for five years now, starting out and doggedly remaining a devoutly artisan operation. This is very much a one-man-band – in the best sense – and that man is Pierre Faverieux: designer, director, assembler, critical listener, muse and demonstrator. Demonstrator? Although T&T builds speakers and supplies them through a chain of dealers, the company also sells their product to customers and end users. As that has become more and more a part of the business, so it has been necessary to assemble a select group of associated products, including SPEC, SoulNote, Rega, ProJect, Atoll and the cable company Absolue Créations – of which more later…

In many ways, the company has emerged along the most traditional of paths. although T&T is five-years young, M. Faverieux has been building speakers for two-and-a-half decades. It’s a story that is as familiar as it is old-school. Like many an enthusiast before him, he chose to abandon a solid if unexciting career and instead turn his hobby and passion into a business. Fortunately for us, he’s one of the those few with the concept and capability, the attention to detail and the exacting approach that makes for products that deliver more than the results of simple enthusiasm. The T&T speakers are as impressive as they are distinctive. But the real question is, what is it that makes them both so distinctive and so impressive?

The first and most obvious aspect of the T&T speakers is their appearance. There are three cabinet designs in the T&T line: the stand-mount Joy, the slim, floor-standing Nel and the larger (but still far from large) Nora. There’s a strong and reassuring family resemblance between the three boxes. Narrow, sloping baffles with sharp facets that taper along the sides and across the top of the drivers make for a strong visual identity, while the sumptuous paintwork adds a classy touch, high on domestic compatibility and reminiscent of far more expensive products. Think Avalon, writ small and with metallic paint ion place of wood veneer and you’ll not be far wrong. But the first real surprise comes when you view the speakers in profile – especially if you’ve already listened to them. The sense of scale and musical impact they generate suggests that their cabinets will be way deeper than they are wide, just to generate the internal volume that normally goes hand in hand with such an emphatic bottom end. In fact, the Joy is only a little deeper than it is wide, while the sloping baffles on the two floor-standers result in a sharply tapered, almost canine profile that’s as striking as it is elegant. Score one for that unmistakably French sense of style!