The Criterion is T+A’s groundbreaking speaker 30 years in the making featuring new, ultra-modern high-performance drive units and a further-refined transmission line design.

Back in 1982 T+A developed a unique and truly ground-breaking series of transmission line loudspeakers whose fundamental design principles are as effective today as ever. They christened this series Criterion (benchmark), and this original range proved to be one of the most successful speaker designs ever produced. Ever since its introduction Criterion has been a byword for loudspeakers equipped with uniquely superior technology, offering extraordinarily good sound and unusually high performance. The latest incarnation of the range is named CTL and consists of three floor-standing loudspeakers that are more compact but even better and more powerful than their predecessors. The speakers boast completely new, ultra-modern high-performance drive units and a transmission line design which has undergone further refinement.

Design Philosophy

The Criterion series constitutes a very good example of successful evolution. The life cycles of each model range have been remarkably long, because the speakers were fitted with the finest, most sophisticated technologies available. Only when further development made significant improvements possible have we introduced a new range of models to the market. The CTL series is the latest stage of evolution of the Criterion loudspeaker. As you would expect, T+A kept their faith in the unique transmission-line principle, since it offers major advantages in the reproduction of low frequencies, but they have again succeeded in improving the efficiency of the line with the new, deeper cabinet format. The transmission-line principle offers major advantages over the bass reflex system, but does call for extremely sophisticated cabinet design if the speaker is to exhibit a very low bass cut-off frequency. In specific terms, this means that the sound guide behind the bass drivers (the transmission-line) must be very long – similar to an organ pipe – otherwise very low frequencies cannot be generated.

The new CTL = Compensated Transmission Line series features a cabinet design which even compensates the acoustical  impedance of the system. Each cabinet consists of a sealed internal case into which the transmission line is glued. This construction not only renders the cabinets very heavy, but also extremely rigid, eliminating all traces of resonance effects. The side and wall panels consist of heavy-duty HDF, finished either with multiple coats of rubbed lacquer, selected, top-quality hardwood veneers or carbon. The baffles feature a newly developed design which T+A have christened  “organic baffle”. The apertures for the speaker drive units are machined to a three-dimensional shape out of the solid baffle material, and act as carefully calculated sound guides generating outstandingly good dispersion characteristics, especially in the mid / high frequency range. The cabinet material is either HDF – for the lacquered versions – or solid wood for the hardwood versions.

The completely new speaker drive units are our latest development, and incorporate the latest design features such as huge magnets, high-performance voice coils, special embossed cones and professional-standard aluminum baskets. They work together to provide a frequency response, maximum sound pressure and reproduction quality which have never been possible before.

The S 2100 CTL

The S 2100 is the medium-sized floor-standing speaker in the CTL series; although it is more compact it is still not small, as it measures a full metre in height. This size ensures that there is ample volume available for the transmission line, which in turn generates very powerful low bass at high volume. In terms of construction it is very similar to the S 2200 CTL; the only difference is that the woofers are slightly smaller. The two 17 cm bass units exactly mirror the 22 cm drivers of the larger S 2200 CTL in design and features. Their resonant frequency is low, they are matched to the transmission line just as accurately, and their extremely hard, embossed cones generate very deep, forceful and accurate bass.

Constant Directivity

As in its big sister, the speaker’s 15 cm mid-range, textile dome treble unit and sculpted “organic baffle” combine to form an acoustic unit which we have named CD = Constant Directivity. This is responsible for the speaker’s superbly spacious sound and outstanding radiation characteristics. The impregnated textile dome tweeter retains its lively, airy qualities even when reproducing extreme dynamic peaks, without any tendency to sound hard or sharp.

Frequency Range

Like all CTL loudspeakers the S 2100 CTL is fitted with a sophisticated double-sided three-way crossover unit (FSR). It is effortlessly capable of handling even the highest levels, and provides perfect control of the three frequency ranges. The speaker’s impressive imaging and dispersion characteristics over the full frequency range are a direct result of the design of the crossover. The S 2100 CTL is effortlessly capable of processing very high levels, and provides a quality of low bass previously considered impossible from a cabinet of this modest size. Nevertheless, its bass response is not quite a match for that of the S 2200 CTL. Like the latter, its refined, carefully developed design also makes it the perfect choice for reproducing the most delicate music with natural sensitivity.


Principle Floor-standing speaker 3-Way Transmission-line
Power rating Nominal power rating 200 Watts
Music power rating 270 Watts
Frequency Range 25Hz – 35,000Hz
Impedance 4 Ohms
Sensitivity 88dB
Drive units Bass 2 x 170 mm
Midrange 1 x 150 mm
High frequency 1 x 25 mm
Crossover frequencies 220 / 2000 Hz
Dimensions 100H x 22W x 35D (cm)
106 x 32 x 40 cm invluding plinth
Weight 31kg
Optional accessories Speaker Hex (Carbon)

Speaker Quad (Carbon)

Visit us for a listening session and free consultation

You are cordially invited to experience Bliss. We are located in Minnetonka, MN on the Deephaven border. We accommodate visits by appointment only and give you our complete attention when you are here. You should expect to have the opportunity to listen to a reference-level system and being engaged in discussion so we learn how to best help guide you further along your journey.

Hours: By appointment only

Call: 612-234-5850