Speaker options/selection

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by Gavin_mi, Jul 6, 2005.

  1. Gavin_mi

    Gavin_mi Stunt Coordinator

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    ok first off I have been researching speakers and AVR's for about a month now. through reading many posts I became interested in the Boston Acoustics VR-M90 fronts, VR-MC center, and VR-MX surrounds. I have priced them and found them to be about $4100 shipped.

    the problem: there is not a boston acoustics dealer within 100 miles of my house in duncan, oklahoma (73533 zipcode) that carries these speakers. [​IMG]

    Now I would never spend this kind of money without LISTENING to the setup for a LONG time to see if this is what is best for my musical/HT tastes.

    I was planning on getting a Marantz SR8500 but then I heard about a pioneer elite VSX-74TXVi that will be coming out next month and desided to wait on a review on that....so its basically between those two for thier DVI/HDMI switching capabilities and THX certification and quality and price.....but thats in another catagory [​IMG]

    For music I generally listen to classic rock (eagles, tom petty, ect) and some new rock (metallica, audioslave, ect) and I live for star wars and LOTR movies.

    What im asking for is some "recommendations" on some other speakers in the same price range ($4100) that I might have a chance to listen to. There is a Paradigm dealer in Lawton which is about 45 minutes away that I plan on visiting this weekend. I talked to a salesman from tweeter that is in lewisville, TX which is about 100 miles that said his polk audio LSI series speakers were comparable in price and quality (I'm not so sure about the quality part of that statement). does anyone know of a boston dealer that is within say 150 miles? that the dealer search did not pick up on the boston web page? any other brands out there that I might visit their web site and do a dealer search for some of their speakers....im willing to do alot of traveling and auditioning to to find the right setup in the sub $5500 dollar range.

    any info would be MUCH appriciaited.

    as always, THANKS so much, [​IMG]
    Gavin
     
  2. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    The LSis won't be a good choice with the 8500 (possibly the Pioneer too, since specs aren't known yet), as the entire line is 4 Ohm. I have an 8300 with 4 Ohm speakers similar to the LSi9s only more efficient, and they sounded strained at higher levels. Quality is good on these speakers; I've owned a few pairs.

    Paradigm Studios would be a pretty good choice for that type of music, and they are a bit easier to drive than the LSis. The LSis have better highs, but the Studios have better midrange to my ears. The 'digms should pair up well with either Marantz or Pioneer Elite.

    Check your area for B&W dealers (www.bwspeakers.com) and if you have one near, go listen to the CM and 700 series. It said there is a dealer in Oklahoma City, and some others in Tx.
     
  3. Gavin_mi

    Gavin_mi Stunt Coordinator

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    there is a B&W dealer in norman, I will check them on this weekend too, if I have time....
     
  4. ScottLR

    ScottLR Stunt Coordinator

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    B&W and don't look back
     
  5. Gavin_mi

    Gavin_mi Stunt Coordinator

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    from what im hearing the B&W 700 series is amazing for music, but how well does the 700 series preform in a 5.1 system, meaning are the center and surround speakers as perfect as the towers? I must be able to watch AOTC with a huge smile on my face so loud that my ears are bleeding and my girlfriends little barking dog drops dead. Also on the web site the surround (rears) are only wall mount.... in my application I will not be able to put them on a wall.

    so these are the best option in my price range? boston digm's and B&Ws? I think the rockets on AV123 are in the same price range, how do they match up with these three? or how about axiom?

    I have a friend with a set of 800 series towers, and they sound really great, but her cats clawed the hell out of the drivers on the right side....[​IMG] ....so im sure they would sound even better if that was intact....3500 dollar speakers and she lets her cats claw them....but thats another story

    Thanks,
    Gavin
     
  6. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    You don't have to use their wall surrounds, you can buy the bookshelf speakers and put them on stands or even another set of towers. If you want it THAT loud, you're probably going to need an external amp and a decent sub (think SVS and HSU).

    How big is your room?
     
  7. Gavin_mi

    Gavin_mi Stunt Coordinator

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    the room is 14X26 with 8 foor ceilings (2912 ft^3)and opens through a double door type entry (with no doors) into the dining room that is about 10X10 (total of 3712 ft^3). the thing is that i just sit in the front portion of the living room about a 14x15 area and behind me is my girlfriends china hutch and things of that nature (forbidden for men to touch). moral of the story is that my surround speakers will be about 15-16 feet from the wall that my fronts, TV, and Sub will be on with lots of room behind me. i was actually planning on getting the SVS PB12-Ultra/2 sub as bass is what truely brings joy to my life....i would also like to mention that this is a rent house and i will only be there for about another 1.5 years max...by then i will have a house built with a dedicated HT room...which will probably be about 20X15.

    when I go to audio dimensions this weekend im taking my AS and metallica CDs and AOTC to push their B&W 700s til they cry out for mercy, or until I conceed and buy them [​IMG]

    thanks for your time and knowledge John, and again should I be persueing any other brands or are these the best of the best in my range? in your opinion of course. [​IMG]

    Gavin
     
  8. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    Well, I'd say you're covered on the sub [​IMG] That should do well, though that total space is fairly large. My cubic footage is right around there, maybe a bit more, and I only have a single PB-10 that is capable of giving me enough oomph to be satisfied without getting me evicted.

    The Rockets are also a good choice. Pretty high WAF because they look nice too. IMO, the 700s are going to sound better though. Check www.audioenvy.com to see if anyone in your area might have some Rockets for you to listen to. I like the Bostons also, just not top of my list. Tweeter should have plenty of good stuff to listen to also. If they still carry Sonus Faber, give those a listen.

    You happened to drop into the forum during a very slow week, looks like a lot of people are on vacation...

    One more online shop that I love is www.gr-research.com My current system is 5 A/V-2s and I could not be happier. I'm looking to purchase another pair of 1s or 2s for my bedroom system too. You could go with a sheilded A/V-2 center, A/V-3 mains and A/V-1s for surrounds. That's about $2700 and will sound great. An order that size may take a while to be built though (built to order). These really are pretty amazing speakers for the price. They really shine with jazz, classical and vocals, but do just fine with AS, Soundgarden and Metallica and they're great for movies too.
     
  9. Gavin_mi

    Gavin_mi Stunt Coordinator

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    does anyone have any input on the swans that are on the links of this site? 30 day money back guarantee?

    good looks, and from what I read on thier site they sound [​IMG] like quality speakers.

    Gavin
     
  10. Gavin_mi

    Gavin_mi Stunt Coordinator

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    Yesterday I went and looked at studio series paradigms, monitor series paradigms, and B&W 703s.....and maybe I dont know what im talking about but I thought the monitor 11s sound the best for what I listen too...I thought the 703s sounded incredibly flat. both the studio and B&W sounded like they only got flater as they got louder, where as the monitors were the other way around. the louder they went the better they sounded (I think this is called an inefficient speaker). anyways, do you all think it was the sound room we were in? anyone have a set of monitor 11s that can give me some feedback? I think im going to monitor 5's for the rear 11's up front and a reference studio CC-470 for the center chanel.

    another interesting think that the demo guy told me (that is going to be in the wrong forum area) is that most all the AV recievers out there use yamaha components? except for denon....is this true?

    thanks for any info,
    Gavin
     
  11. Marty M

    Marty M Cinematographer

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    I'm not sure about the Yamaha component statement. I can tell you that I have been a happy owner of the Yamaha receiver/Paradigm Monitor 7 combination for over eight years. Go with what sounds best to you.
     
  12. LanceJ

    LanceJ Producer

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    Gavin: going by your musical tastes which are similar to mine, personally speaking B&W and Paradigm have never done much for the music I like. B&Ws sound rather soft to me in their upper range (though I haven't heard the new 700 series yet); and maybe they've changed but three years ago when I last listened to two different series of Paradigms, both had a "dry" and rather strident sound.

    I own Bostons myself and think you will like them too. Though IMO that Boston center is too small for what you want to use your system for (I don't why they don't sell a large one like they used to). Same with the surrounds: that particular model only has one active 5.25" woofer, which I think will be overwhelmed by the receivers you're looking at. The step up model, the VR-M/EX, would be a better choice.

    You also might want to check out Klipsch's speakers.
     
  13. Gavin_mi

    Gavin_mi Stunt Coordinator

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    thanks for the response Lance and Marty.

    the problem with boston Lance is that there is no where close to my house that I can audition them.
     
  14. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    The 470 will not match with the 11s; there is a substantial difference in their timbre.

    5s for surrounds would be fine, but I'd either get a CC-370 to match the 11s or 60s or 100s to match the 470. The 11s always sounded good to me. The Studios have a clearer midrange than the Monitors, but the highs are a bit too bright for my liking. I owned Monitors for about 2 years, and when I upgraded, I did not move up to the Studios for that reason. The way I see it, going with the Monitor line means you will be more likely to upgrade (IMO) sooner, and with your budget, you can get something a bit nicer.

    The B&Ws are relatively flat, but I like the way they sound. To me, the highs are clear and natural sounding compared to Paradigm, but they may not be quite right for the type of music you listen to.

    Even if everyone used some of Yamaha's components, there are enough design and critical component differences that you will still have differences in sound. It is also no reflection on whether Yamaha is better or worse than any other manufacturer, so I'm not sure what the point of his statement was. It also seems to be far too much of a blanket statement, if you ask me.
     
  15. Gavin_mi

    Gavin_mi Stunt Coordinator

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    John,

    would you say that studio 100s are brighter than the monitor 11s???
    if so maybe im missing something here, I thought the monitor 11s were border line too bright...but for metallica and audioslave which I used for auditioning bright is good. Im going to go back this weekend and listen to some other stuff and to watch a movie. I did watch a few scenes from AOTC and now that I have had time to think about it, the 11s were maybe too bright....arg my memory sucks...I need to go back and listen to them again and just ask the salesman to leave me alone in there to molest his audio equipment. I also HAVE to find some VR series bostons to listen to before I buy anything.

    one thing is for sure I didnt like the B&Ws unless they werent set up right...gah! I need to go back to audio tech this weekend.

    oh and I made a mistake the B&W I listened to was the 601 S3 not the 703...so I would assume that I need to hear the 703 still because the 600 series bookself speakers were definately out gunned by the paradigms.

    anyways thanks for hangin with me on this one guys, your advice has proven to be crutial to my audio/mental well being.

    Gavin
     
  16. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    The 700s are pretty much 2 steps up from the 600s, so yes, they are in a different league. To me, it's kind of a toss-up between the 600s and the Paradigm Monitors, both having different qualities. I prefer the 600s for music, but rock tends to favor something like the Paradigms.

    The Studio's highs are definitely brighter, but I still feel the Monitor line is farily bright too. I didn't really feel they were that bright until I moved to the GRs, which are much more neutral and, IMO, easier to listen to for extended periods. The midrange on the Studios is noticably more dynamic than the Monitors to me. The 11s and 100s are both going to want a pretty decent amount of power, to the poitn that I might recommend external amplification for them. If it were me, I'd probably listen to Studio 60s w/CC470, which should be plenty for that room.
     

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