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A visit to Triangle’s factory in Soissons

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Established in 1980 by Renaud de Vergnette, Triangle designs and manufactures a wide range of acoustic speakers. Its site in Soissons (Picardy) is dedicated to assembling the compact, floorstanding and center speakers, as well as the subwoofers, in the brand’s Magellan and Signature ranges. We had the opportunity to be welcomed by this flagship French hi-fi brand, and we’d like to share some of the highlights of our visit with you.

The tour began with a visit to the factory’s museum, where the first speakers developed by Renaud de Vergnette were on display. From the Triangle 1180 speaker, the first model sold (in 1980) to the Triangle Magellan subwoofer, Triangle CX2 and Triangle Magellan Grand Concert, the brand’s most emblematic models were all in attendance. A number of Diapason d’Or awards decorated the walls as a testament to Triangle’s reputation.

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The next stop on our tour was the office of research director Sébastien Miquel. This is where test models of the brand’s new speakers and drivers are developed.

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A low-mid driver from a Triangle Antal EZ on the left, and one from a Triangle Austral EZ on the right.

We continued our tour with a visit to the factory’s anechoic chamber. This space is used to measure the speakers’ performance. Data is displayed on a computer screen in an office next to the chamber.

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Triangle has always been a committed investor in innovation and technical mastery. In addition, its research and development department has access to state-of-the-art equipment. Notably, a Klippel system allows the brand to conduct very thorough tests for its speaker drivers.

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The driver assembly workshop was the next stop on our tour. Here, nearly everything is done by hand. Step by step, we discovered how the 6.3” bass driver used in the Triangle Magellan Quatuor and Triangle Magellan Cello floorstanding speakers are put together.

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The process begins with the magnetization of the driver’s magnet. The magnet is placed in a machine, and a powerful electric current is applied to it (10 amperes). After a few seconds, the magnetization process is complete. Next, the magnet and basket are assembled. Four screws are sealed into place. An exclusive Triangle terminal is also fastened onto the basket.

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The transducer’s mobile unit is the next element to be processed. Two fiberglass cones are placed around an internal honeycomb-shaped structure composed of cellulose fiber. This improves rigidity while reducing distortion. The coil is wound around Kapton film and heat is applied. Following a technique unique to Triangle, the coil is positioned both on the inside and the outside of the roll of Kapton film.

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The coils are cut and ready to be added to the rest of the transducer’s mobile unit. Resin is applied by hand to the front and back of the cone, then cured with UV light.

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The coil’s wires are soldered to two braided cables which are then threaded through two holes at the back of the cone. Glue is applied to the holes in order to ensure optimum durability. The spider is glued to the coil’s support.

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The cone is ready to be glued to the driver’s basket. A machine is used to apply glue to the surround’s support. Different settings are available to match the diameter of the driver. This step thus requires making a few adjustments before the glue is applied. Once everything is in place, the driver is left to dry for two hours.

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A first test is carried out in order to verify that the mobile unit is in perfect working order. If its performance is up to snuff, the dust cap may be glued into place.

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Once more, this step requires painstaking attention to detail and precise machining for a perfectly centered result. Once the driver’s back cover is put in place, a second round of tests, this time in the miniature anechoic chamber, may begin. The driver’s frequency response, distortion and impedance are measured using CLIO software. If all the specs are met, the driver may go on to the next step: speaker assembly. If a driver fails to meet specs, the transducer’s mobile unit (surround, cone, coil, spider and wires) are discarded and the basket and magnet go back to the beginning of the assembly line. On average, 20 of these drivers are produced each day.

The Triangle factory in Soissons also features two rooms dedicated to speaker assembly: one for compact speakers and a second for floorstanding models.

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In these two rooms, internal wiring, damping systems, terminals and drivers are placed inside the cabinets. Once a speaker is fully assembled, a new round of tests begins. Note that Triangle puts its high-end speakers through a break-in period for optimal functionality straight out of the box.

We ended our visit in one of the factory’s auditoriums, where we listened to several of the brand’s speakers: the Magellan Concerto, the new Triangle Austral EZ, and the Triangle Elara LN05A. The latter is an amplified version of the Triangle Elara LN05 speaker. Like its smaller sibling, the Triangle Elara LN01A, it offers extensive connectivity (coaxial, optical, RCA and 3.5mm jack). This amplified speaker is also equipped with an LFE output and features Bluetooth aptX connectivity.

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A pair of Triangle Austral EZ floorstanding speakers next to a pair of Triangle Magellan Concerto floorstanding speakers.

Visit our website to discover the full line-up of Triangle products.

This post is also available in: French

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Mikaël Joly

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