Some Axiom questions…

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by Matt_Smi, Oct 11, 2004.

  1. Matt_Smi

    Matt_Smi Second Unit

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    I am starting to do some research and put together some speaker packages, I want new fronts, two surrounds and a center; I already have an HSU STF-2 so I am good in the sub department. My budget is $1,00-1,200 max and I am currently looking at Axiom, Ascend and Rocket. For Axiom (my top choice) I am looking at M22ti’s for fronts, QS4’s for surrounds and a VP150 for the center. I have heard many good things about the M22’s but would I be better off getting the M50ti towers for fronts instead? I am not sure they will offer much more over the 22’s besides bass response but I am not sure. Also I was considering the M3ti bookshelves for surrounds instead of the Q4’s, it would be a bit cheaper but I am not sure how much better surrounds the Q4’s make. If I did get the M50’s I would have the get the M3’s for surrounds anyway to stay within my budget.

    Anyway I guess I am just looking for advice on what the best package of speakers (minus the sub) for under $1,200 from Axiom would be. I don’t want to skip on the fronts nor the center (not sure if the VP100 is good enough), I guess the surrounds are the least important to me, I just can’t see going for the QS8’s and spending more on my surrounds than my fronts. Even the QS4’s seem a bit much at $370, that’s why I am looking at the M3’s for surrounds instead, but the Q4’s do seem like a neat design and may make things more immersive and be worth the price. Also instead of ordering them all at once I plan on ordering just the M22’s (if I go with those) first and listening to them for a while to see if I really love them, and if I do I will order the rest, if not I will pay the return shipping and looks elsewhere. Thanks for any help on this!
     
  2. Allen.S

    Allen.S Extra

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    FWIW, I was exactly in the same spot as you a few months back. I finally convinced myself that there were enough people that felt Axiom's center was a bit weak, and the highs were a bit too bright...so I went with Ascend. (I'm about 75% HT, so the center is paramount for me.) Couldn't find anyone to knock the Ascends, other than their boxy looks and vinyl covers.

    I called Axiom, and traded many emails with David at Ascend. BOTH companies appear to have excellent cust service. BOTH companies are highly regarded on any site that considers internet brand speakers.

    My Ascends arrive tomorrow, and I should get them configured by the weekend. Stay tuned.
     
  3. Oachalon

    Oachalon Stunt Coordinator

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    i have the qs4s and they work good. I also have the vp150 center channel and i cant say one bad thing about it other than it takes up the whole top of my tv lol. Im not sure if u should go m22s or m50s. I have the m60s for my fronts and love them but i dont think thats in ur price range. Since you have a pretty good sub i would say go with the m22s.
     
  4. Matt_Smi

    Matt_Smi Second Unit

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    Allen, let me know what you think of the Ascends, because another package I was considering was the CMT-340M’s for fronts, the HTM-200’s for rears and the CMT-340 center. Another thing I thought about concerning the Axiom QS4’s was the fact that they may not be good for multi channel music (DVD-A), so I may be better off with the M3’s for surrounds if I get a DVD player with these capabilities.
     
  5. Allen.S

    Allen.S Extra

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    Let me try to summarize:

    I NEVER make a purchasing descision lightly, especially when it comes to technology or something I want to show off. So I've researched this a LOT.

    When it finally came down to weighing all the variables (speaker size was a factor, money, etc.), reviews, and opinions.... Ascends simply came out on top. As I said, I could find NOTHING negative about them except appearance (more on this in a second.)

    I received the speakers yesterday in great condition, and had barely an hour to play with them. So I hooked up the fronts only (CBM-170's) on TV trays. I connected them to my "B" outputs on my receiver so I could literally do some A/B comparisons with my current HTIB Onkyo speakers.

    I then put in verious music for my son (who said the old speakers "rocked") while having him listen with his eyes closed. Ascends won. Easily. The only time the difference wasn't stark was on some the higher material, as the Onyko's are small and reproduce highs pretty well.

    So then I listened for myself with some of my favorite material. One thing I didn't like about my old speakers was the fact that I always felt like the sound was coming from that little box. Hard to explain, but you just knew you were listening to a speaker, and where the speaker was. With the Ascends, closing my eyes, it was very easy to pretend that the artists were in the room with me. "Clean" might be one of the best words to use. Of course, I wasn't "blind" during this, and certainly wasn't unbiased.

    So then, the wife. She didn't want the speakers. At all. So I asked her to have an open mind, and just come listen. I told her that I was still trying to make up my mind (yeah, right!) and wanted her opinion. I had her close her eyes, and played one of her favorite songs ("Your Song" from the Moulan Rouge soundtrack) from my old speakers. "They sound fine to me." I told her to wait, because I wanted her to listen again. (I used a tone of voice that indicated that the second set was our old speakers.) I flipped to the Ascends and played it again.

    She teared up. No kidding. "I, um, like these better... I'm sorry." (Success!) I confessed, and the Ascends get to stay.


    As far as appearance goes... They are just plain. I had them leave the logos off, beacuse I'm not sure what orientation I'll be mounting them in quite yet. So they are fairly flat black boxes that seem to blend in and disappear. I LIKE the look, as I just want SOUND in my room, not "boxes making sound." Here's the kicker... I ordered B-Stock speakers to save a few bucks, and expected to find a tear, gauge or something. I didn't inspect the speakers closely, but I certainly didn't see anything wrong with them.

    Ascend the company rocks. Ascend the speaker rocks. I'm quite pleased so far. I'll try to post my impressions of the whole system once I get the 340c, the 200's up, and get my SVS PB10 in and everything calibrated.


    Sorry for the not-so-short summary.
     
  6. CurtisSC

    CurtisSC Screenwriter

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  7. Matt_Smi

    Matt_Smi Second Unit

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    Allen, thanks for the first impressions. I have decided that if I go with Axioms it will be the M22’s, QS8’s and VP150. But I am leaning towards Ascend right now because like you mentioned I have really not heard a valid bad thing about them, and all of there speakers have pretty much a prefect rating on audio review. I have heard of Axioms being too bright and I am really not a fan of “in your face speakers” along with there center being weak compared to the rest of their speakers. I do think that the QS8’s would make for killer surrounds though and that is one thing I may be missing my going with Ascends where I will use 170’s for surrounds. I think what it may have to come down to is me ordering M22’s and CMT-340M’s and then doing A/B comparisons of them. Because I feel like if I go with Axioms I will be thinking “I wonder if the Ascends would have sounded better?”, this way I will be able to feel 100% confidant that I made the right choice, even though I will have to pay someone’s return shipping. Does anyone know if Ascend charges return shipping?
     
  8. Craig Chase

    Craig Chase Gear Guru
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    Matt - I would recommend you look at the M-50 from Axiom instead if the M-22... They are $620 delivered, no stands needed, and everything I have read suggests they are a more neutral speaker than the M-22's ...
     
  9. Gary Burdick

    Gary Burdick Stunt Coordinator

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    I also posted this on the Ascend forums....

    I ordered both the 170s and the m22's to compare side by side in my home. I preferred the m22's. I felt they had more treble/midrange clarity than the Ascends, which were more laid back than the axioms. I don't consider the axioms that bright, but clear. They do have a slight metallic sound in the tweeter. I ended up sending both back and later got a pair of m2i's used. I use these for my dorm room setup and they sound great for the price.
     
  10. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    Woohoo! That is awsome. [​IMG]

    FWIW, I just installed a Mordaunt Short Declaration system this weekend, and for the $750+shipping, I think it would be hard to beat it. The sub seems to be it's weakest point, and it really isn't that bad at all. It won't hold up in a larger room, but it seemed to do OK in this room, which was ~15x18. I spoke with AC4L's customer service and they said there is no problem ordering the system without the sub (talk to Jason).
     
  11. RayM

    RayM Agent

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    I just got a pair of M22s and a VP100 center from Axiom. They sound great to me! I was skeptical about them being bright or harsh but they aren't at all, just very very detailed. I think it'd be worth it to audition them... if you don't like the sound you have 30 days to return them. [​IMG]
     
  12. Dan Mastro

    Dan Mastro Agent

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    matt, sent you a pm.
    dan
     
  13. Matt_Smi

    Matt_Smi Second Unit

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    Hmm I did not get one. Also about the M50 instead of the M22, I e-mailed Axiom about it and they said that the M22 will sound very similar in the midrange and upper end presentation and that the gain in going with the 50’s would be bass extension and more output (louder in bigger rooms). Going with the M50 would break the budget and I would have to get QS4’s and a VP100 to keep it within budget. Honestly I think that both the Axioms and Ascends will both be great speakers and I think it comes down to personal preference, and if you like your speakers a bit more forward and detailed or a bit more laid back. Therefore I think the only way will be for me to order M22’s and 170’s and decide for myself. Thanks for the input guys.
     
  14. CurtisSC

    CurtisSC Screenwriter

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    Great decision...best thing you could do. Make sure you spend a lot of time with them, with everything you listen to.
     
  15. Rob Kramer

    Rob Kramer Second Unit

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    This may be harder that you think.

    My Onkyo 800 lets me A/B via the remote, my Pioneer Elite does not.

    Also, use a high xover freq with no sub (I found this to work the best, unless you have 2 identical subs hooked up).


    Try this:
    http://www.htd.com/htdspeaksel.html
     
  16. CurtisSC

    CurtisSC Screenwriter

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    Rob, could you explain this a little more?
     
  17. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    I'd use no sub and NO x-over (full range). Listening with your sub in the equation does not let you hear the bottom end of each speaker, and listening with a high crossover means you may miss out on the most critical aspect (for me anyway) of the speaker, the midrange.
     
  18. Chris Quinn

    Chris Quinn Screenwriter

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    I think listening with a sub is vital if you are going to use a sub. You need to know how it sounds with the sub.
     
  19. Craig Chase

    Craig Chase Gear Guru
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    Interesting that Axiom thinks the M-50's and the M-22's will have a similar sonic signature... the guys on the board disagree... but the company guys are hard to argue with.

    We have had M-22's AND 170's here for over 4 months each now... and it is a TOUGH call. Your personal A/B idea is a great one, especially with the low return shipping on either...
     
  20. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    It's going to sound the same, just with the sub covering the lower octaves, which you are not listening for. As long as the speakers each cover below the x-over point well, they can ALL be blended with basically any sub.
     

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