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Upgrade bug is getting me... questions on speakers from Tweeter


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24 replies to this topic

#1 of 25 OFFLINE   Mike__D

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Posted February 25 2003 - 03:27 AM

Hi all,

I currently have JBL N38's as mains and the N-Center. I'm using old Advent mini's for surrounds and have N26's for surrounds which are not currently hooked up. My receiver is an Onkyo 595.

I'm thinking about upgrading my speakers. I prefer NOT to buy speakers online, so it limits me to Best Buy, Circuit City & Tweeter. I don't know of any hi-end shops around my area.

Anyway, was thinking of Tweeter, since there is one close to my work (I'd like to go higher end then what BB & CC sell). They carry Klipsch, Boston Acoustics, Mirage, Tivoli, Vienna and Bose. Aside from Bose (I know all about them), I don't know much about the other brands. Can some of you please enlighten me? I'll do my part with a search, but I am a bit busy at work and was hoping to get some replies for easy reference.

I do not have any preferences or price limits set just yet, would just like to hear opinions on these brands, and Tweeter if anyone has shopped there before.

Thanks much!!

Mike D.

#2 of 25 OFFLINE   Rob Rodier

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Posted February 25 2003 - 04:01 AM

I can tell you about Mirage. I have owned a couple of pairs from the former flagship "m-si" line. Mirage is a Canadian company whose parent (ATI?) sells other speakers most notably, Energy. Their better speakers have always utilized bipolar and now omnipolar technology. The technologys feature drivers on the front and back of the speaker that provide a diffused and spread out kind of sound. While this is true, I have always found their speakers to be accurate. I would characterize my m7si, and m5si, as slighly laid back with a neutral presentation. The m7s also had a slighly warm mid-bass. (some will like that) Overall excellent speakers with very good build quality. I am not too familiar with the newer omnipolar stuff but from what I have briefly (very) heard and read they seem to be keeping the integrity of the name high. Oh yeah, I also had a pair of frx-5 that I felt were the speaker to beat for under $500. The names you mentioned can GENERALLY be ordered in terms of sound/quality as; Vienna, Mirage, Boston (the ref are very nice), tivoli (do they make full range speakers?) and anything else, then bose. Good luck -rob

#3 of 25 OFFLINE   Tony Genovese

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Posted February 25 2003 - 04:05 AM

I recommend the Boston Acoustics VR-M50 for fronts and VR-MC for the center. Very neutral, accurate sound, which I prefer. Vienna makes a nice system as does Sonus Faber (also carried by Tweeter). You need to listen to determine what type of sound you like. Any of Tweeter's brands are good, your taste will differentiate which you ultimately go with.

#4 of 25 OFFLINE   glenn.arsenault

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Posted February 25 2003 - 04:57 AM

Just got done listening to BA VR-M60's against a number of other brands. Very nice speakers for both music & HT.
~Glenn

#5 of 25 OFFLINE   Rich Malloy

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Posted February 25 2003 - 05:19 AM

If I could afford speakers by Vienna Acoustics or Sonus faber, they'd certainly be way up at the top of a very short audition list. I think they both sound phenomenal, but you will probably pay a premium at Tweeter. Not sure what other retailers stock these speaker lines, but Sumiko is the importer of the Viennas.
"Only one is a wanderer;
Two together are always going somewhere."

#6 of 25 OFFLINE   Tony Genovese

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Posted February 25 2003 - 05:22 AM

I have owned the VA and found them too rolled off for my taste which is why they're now in the home of a new owner. The BA is a much more accurate speaker IMO. The SF is an interesting case as the new Home series is certainly more extended on top and less plummy than the original, but the high end might be a tad too exposed on these.

#7 of 25 OFFLINE   rodger_morales

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Posted February 25 2003 - 06:16 AM

I have read somewhere that BB will be selling athena as well as klipsch very soon if you can wait. I have heard the athenas and I am planning to upgrade to them soon.

#8 of 25 OFFLINE   Mike__D

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Posted February 25 2003 - 06:31 AM

Thanks for the mostly serious replies. Posted Image

Sonus are out of my price range. I'm curious about Mirage. I thought bipolar were generally used for DPL surrounds before the 5.1 days. Don't you want sound to be localized in a X.1 system? How did they perform in HT?

How about Klipsch? I searched a bit on them and they seem to be bright sounding? I wonder if they'll match well with my Onkyo.

I forgot to mention my sub is a JBL PB-10. Maybe I should start there and upgrade with the new SVS boxed sub (I wouldn't mind ordering online from them since they have a great rep here).

JamesCB, I see you are a new memeber here (2/20/03). For future reference, you should reframe from hi-jacking threads (like mine) with Bose bashing, as well as starting new ones doing the same.

Mike D.

#9 of 25 OFFLINE   Frank Carter

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Posted February 25 2003 - 07:05 AM

All of the brands you mention, with the exception of Bose(don't know about Tivoli), are well respected brands. Speakers sound is a very subjective matter. My suggestion to you is head into Tweeter with some CD's you're familiar with and give all the speakers in your price range a workout.

As far as the Klipsch being bright, listen for yourself and decide. Klipsch lovers(like me) say others are mistaking clarity for *brightness*. One thing most will agree on, is Klipsch speakers tend to be picky with what you power them with. In my experiences, I prefer HK then Denon. My brother uses and Onkyo TX-DS494 with Klipsch speakers and it sounds great to me.

For subs, the well respected brands around here are Hsu, SVS, and Adire Audio. Them only one you might be able to find around you is Hsu though. Also, if you have a few basic tools, nothing can beat the price/performace artio of building your own sub.

For more specific info, go to www.klipsch.com, there is an active forum with great info and people there.


#10 of 25 OFFLINE   Frank Carter

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Posted February 25 2003 - 07:08 AM

If you do like the Klipsch, Tweeter might be able to give you a deal since they're no longer going to sell their speakers. Also Best Buy will start selling Klipsch's Synergy series, Wharfedale Diamond, and Athena Technologies.

#11 of 25 OFFLINE   Mike__D

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Posted February 25 2003 - 07:14 AM

Why is Tweeter no longer going to carry Klipsch? I'm looking at the Reference line, which BB won't sell. Mike D.

#12 of 25 OFFLINE   Frank Carter

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Posted February 25 2003 - 07:20 AM

I don't know but here's the news release from Klipsch:

http://www.klipsch.c...tail.asp?id=649


#13 of 25 OFFLINE   Mike__D

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Posted February 25 2003 - 08:14 AM

Was just chatting with my buddy. He recommends B&W 600 series. Says there are a few shops near him that offer them. Maybe I'll look into them. Mike D.

#14 of 25 OFFLINE   Bill Blank

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Posted February 25 2003 - 11:51 AM

I own a full Vienna Acoustics setup and have never been happier with my system: V.A. Mozart (Front) V.A. Maestro (Center) V.A. Haydn (Rear) Music can be listened to for hours on end with absolutely ZERO fatigue. Movies have one of the most dynamic yet natural presentations I've ever heard. I mainly listen to modern/classic rock but everything (haven't tried hip-hop) sounds great on these speakers. The cabinets and drivers are top notch to boot! HIGHLY recommended! Bill

#15 of 25 OFFLINE   Gerry S

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Posted February 25 2003 - 12:35 PM

Mike: I spent last weekend at HiFi Buys(owned by Tweeter). I listened to the Klipsch Reference 3's and Mirage's omnipolar speakers. Try to get down there and audition them for yourself. I'll give my opinion, but you need to be the judge. The Klipsch sounded overwhelming to me. I honestly felt like the sound was in my face. For me, this was not a comfortable experience. The Mirage (omni 250's), on the other hand, was the complete opposite. The sound was dispersed throughout the front of the room. As I stood towards the rear of the room, the sound seemed distant. Also, the Mirage was not tolerable without a subwoofer. They had a small room with 5 omnisats and a LF150 sub. They had Pearl Harbor playing. For a small room, they performed well in a 5.1 setup. Bottom line, I didnt walking away wanting to purchase either brand. The main lesson I learned is you have to listen for yourself. Read and educate yourself here, but let your ears be the final judge. -Gerry

#16 of 25 OFFLINE   Mike__D

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Posted February 25 2003 - 02:57 PM

I stopped at Tweeter after work today, just to see what they had in stock... everything Posted Image

Anyway, I wasn't there to audition, as I was in a hurry, but I went in one sound room were they had Vienna Acoustics playing... oh my!! What clean & clear sound! Bill, you got yourself a hell of a setup from what little I heard.

This is making me rethink my strategy a bit. Maybe I should save up and go all out, and for now, just upgrade my sub. I'll start auditioning speakers in all ranges in the next few weeks. If I find the wow factor in a cheaper (cheaper then the Vienna) speaker, I'll go for it. I'm hoping the B&W 600 series impresses me...

Thanks again for everyones advice Posted Image

Mike D.

#17 of 25 OFFLINE   Rob Rodier

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Posted February 26 2003 - 12:35 AM

You also want to add Mirage and M&K to you subwoofewr list. They will compete with just about anything. The bigger M&Ks are flat out rediculous. Good luck -rob

#18 of 25 OFFLINE   SeannO

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Posted February 26 2003 - 12:56 AM

I was given a Tweeter gift card for Christmas to start upgrading my speaker system. I did my research first to narrow down the field since Tweeter has a wide variety. After several auditioning tripd to Tweeter, I ended up with a pair of Boston VR-M50 for my mains. I was limited, due to space and wife, to bookshelf or smaller. I felt the Klipsch were a little big for my space constraints. So I can't speak about them. I auditioned speakers from every other manufacturer that Tweeter carries. TO ME, the 50s sounded the best overall, although I had a budget of 1K for the pair. I think they are incredible for music as well as HT. I can't wait to get the VR-MC next. They also look good. Another thing that you should consider, while auditioning speakers with your own CDs, is to listen using the same, or a similar, receiver to the one you have. I know it helped me out. Also, ask about the return process/home demo. I was told that I could return the speakers w/in 30 days (for store credit) if they didn't sound good in my home. Good luck and enjoy the process.

#19 of 25 OFFLINE   Bill Blank

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Posted February 26 2003 - 03:58 AM

Tweeter also offers a one-year trade in where they'll give you what you paid towards a new pair of speakers (assuming they're still in good condition of course) Bill

#20 of 25 OFFLINE   Tony Genovese

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Posted February 26 2003 - 05:21 AM

Which I've used on many occasions. It's a good way to start on the lower end and work your way up. Of course, at some point, you reach the end of the line and have to start anew at another store with different lines Posted Image.




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