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Atoms Away!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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#1 of 29 ryan.p

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Posted March 09 2006 - 12:06 AM

The other day I had the day off and took some time to do some extensive listening to the Paradigm speakers. I own a set of the Studio 20 v.3's and I just love them. However, I dont want to sink another $1000 or so to get the CC-470 and another pair of the 20's for rears (5.1). So, I am looking at alternatives and wanted to see what I could find. I been using the Athena Point 5 MKII system for only home theater applications and using my Studio 20's for music application which is where my preferce is. The Athenas do a very good job but wanted to check out Paradigm and see what I could find. I really liked the Monitor 3 v.4's and the 7's. The Minis to me did not impress me too much. Of course the Reference line is a huge step up from the Monitor line. However, I still prefer the Studio 20 v.3's over the rest of the Reference line. Just not a big fan of tower speakers. Will take a good stand mounted speaker w/a good powered sub anyday as opposed to a tower speaker. Funny thing is I prefferred the Atom v.4's over the Mini Monitors and the Titans. There is just something about that little speaker---talking about an over achiever!!!! Anybody else here found the same????? Please enlighten me. Therefore, I will be buying a set of the Atoms for front and another set for my rears. I will go with the cc-170 or cc-270 for my center. Leaning more towards the 170 because it has the same exact size drivers as the Atoms and I have owned a cc-170 before. Will continue to use my Studio 20 v.3's for 2-channel music listening. Multi-channel music listening is not my thing.
"It is NOT about what brand of audio components you use but RATHER how you use them that counts--only YOU know what YOU prefer. It really is as simple as that."

#2 of 29 Elliot_W

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Posted March 09 2006 - 01:54 AM

I also have the Athena Point 5 MKII for my modest HT set-up. My serious gear is for 2-channel only.

I have always been curious to know if there is a considerable difference in using the Atoms vs the Athena Point 5 for HT in a small room.

What are the differences in your opinion?

#3 of 29 RickTop

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Posted March 09 2006 - 02:07 AM

I am using my atoms as surrounds but have listened to them as stero also. and youre right, they are performers! i like the cc-170 also. i have really been impressed by paradigm.

#4 of 29 Andrew Pratt

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Posted March 09 2006 - 02:30 AM

The atom's are very good speakers...but I fail to see the logic in using them upfront if you already have the 20's? Sure the atom's might be a slightly better match to the center but it'll be close enough not to be problem...besides I'd rather see you take that extra $200 saved and put it towards the center.

#5 of 29 ryan.p

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Posted March 09 2006 - 05:10 AM

Andrew the reason I want to use the Atoms for fronts and rears is to do so only for watching dvd's. My preference is on 2-channel music listening but I do want good home theater effect. Just dont care for multi-channel music listening so I thought the Atoms would work just fine. I did own the Titans v.3's but sold them along with the cc-170 v.3 center. However, when demoing the other day for some reason I preferred the sound of the Atoms. Thus, the Atoms just projected better and were a bit more articulate. Truly an over achiever in my opinion. Just dont have the funds to shell out for a cc-470 and another set of the 20's right now. Since my preference is on 2-channel music listening I thought I would find an alternative. The Athena Point 5 MKII is very good but the center is weak. Thought about buying the Audition series center C1.2 and maybe (2) sets of the B1.2's and use my Point 5's for back surrounds. But, there is just something I like better about the Atoms and chances are that is what I will go with. That way, the fronts, rears, and center will all have the same EXACT size drivers. My LFE is being handled with (2) Acoustic Research 8" subs that are excellent for both home theater applications as well as for music. That way, I will be more than happy and save some money too. The Atoms IMHO are better than the Titans and I know I will be happy with them.
"It is NOT about what brand of audio components you use but RATHER how you use them that counts--only YOU know what YOU prefer. It really is as simple as that."

#6 of 29 ryan.p

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Posted March 09 2006 - 05:19 AM

Elliot yes I think the Atoms are much better than the Athena's Point 5 MKII speakers. Not sure how the Atoms would match up with the Athena Audition series B1.2. Have heard both but never in the same room using the same exact equipment. From what I have noticed, the B1.2's definately have more low end BUT it is a little on the boomy side whereas the Atoms low end is a bit more articulate sounding to me. I also prefer the way the Atoms project the sound---imaging is paramount to having good home theater effect.
"It is NOT about what brand of audio components you use but RATHER how you use them that counts--only YOU know what YOU prefer. It really is as simple as that."

#7 of 29 John Garcia

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Posted March 09 2006 - 07:35 AM

I've owned the B1s and the Atoms, and I can say the midrange and bass is better on the B1 (closer to the Titans), but the highs are better on the Atoms. I didn't find the B1s boomy at all. The Atoms are more articulate because they LACK bass altogether. With a sub, that isn't an issue. For music listening, I don't find the Performance line to be up to the task.

At the $200 price point, The Onyx X-LS will probably blow the Atoms and B1s away in every category.
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#8 of 29 Andrew Pratt

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Posted March 09 2006 - 08:35 AM

There's no reason to match the surrounds to the fronts in a HT...if you are into multichannel music it might be a factor but for what you are describing I'd still recomend running atom's for surrounds, the 20's for fronts and the best center speaker you can afford. Having the same drivers in the fronts and rears isn't really a problem. Its ideal to voice match them but atom's will sound close enough to the 20's in this case to do the job. Its far more important to get a seemless pan across the front which is why I'm saying use the 20's and with the money saved from buying two sets of atoms buy the matching center to the 20's....you're always better off with a great center channel as it carries the bulk of movie soundtracks.

#9 of 29 ryan.p

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Posted March 09 2006 - 09:39 AM

John I couldn't agree more. This is why I am not using the performance line for music but rather for when watching dvds. My Studio 20's are mainly for music. The Atoms had a little bit of bass but like you said it is not an issue because I have (2) powered 8" subs handling the LFE. I owned a set of the Titans but IMHO the Atoms are much better. The B1.2's were demoed at Best Buy and we all know how poor their set-up is. The Athenas were decent but I prefer the sound of the Atoms myself.
"It is NOT about what brand of audio components you use but RATHER how you use them that counts--only YOU know what YOU prefer. It really is as simple as that."

#10 of 29 ryan.p

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Posted March 09 2006 - 09:43 AM

Andrew you make a good point and I can get the cc-470 at a very good price. Likewise, the Atoms are not very expensive. So you think my Studio 20 v.3's along with the cc-470 v.3 for my front stage would work very well with the Atom v.4's in the rears???? Are you sure the Atoms will blend with the front stage???
"It is NOT about what brand of audio components you use but RATHER how you use them that counts--only YOU know what YOU prefer. It really is as simple as that."

#11 of 29 ryan.p

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Posted March 09 2006 - 09:47 AM

John how do you think the Athena B1.2's for fronts, C1.2 for the center, and another pair of B1.2's for rears would work as compared to the Paradigm scenarios??? Oh, btw I agree about the Onix speakers BUT there is no center channel available. Also, by the time you pay shipping costs becomes much more of a factor. The speakers are quite heavy and will cost more for shipping.
"It is NOT about what brand of audio components you use but RATHER how you use them that counts--only YOU know what YOU prefer. It really is as simple as that."

#12 of 29 Evan M.

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Posted March 09 2006 - 10:51 AM

I am VERY confused. You have Studio20 mains but want to get Atoms for mains and use them for movies and switch to the 20's for music.......WHY????? Is it just because you don't want to shell out money for a 470 center and want to get atoms and a 170? I still do not see the logic....

Why not just get the 470 that you said you could get at a great deal. A good friend of mine has Studio 20's and 470 and Atoms for rears. It sounds fantastic. He used to have Atoms up front a 170 and Atoms for rears. He upgraded to the system I already mentioned. The Atoms are good but the 20's are that much better. He also uses the system ONLY for movies.....and still thought the Atoms lacked for the movies.

I also agree with Andrew. If the system is used for movies then don't dump the money on surrounds. Get the best front soundstage you can afford. Another option may be to go with no center (some people and company's refer to this as a phantom center). A lot of people are very happy with no center. Good luck.

#13 of 29 AlanZ

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Posted March 09 2006 - 11:05 AM

I love Atoms, but I think I'm as confused as Evan is....that beign said, I agree with Evan's point about the front stage. Unless you are HUGE into multi-channel music, I just don't understand why people want to dump lots of money into their surrounds. Put that money toward your front stage for gosh sakes! I'm one of those weirdos who doesn't like center speakers, but if you're gonna get one, get the best match you can for the mains. I love movies, and I spend more time with them than I do listening to music. I'm not some 2-channel purist who thinks surround sound is a waste. I just think that when it comes down to it, what we all really want above anything else is QUALITY. Sure, it's easy to get excited about 5.1, 7.1, whatever.....I love when the DTS logo comes on before the movie starts and plays that piano note that sends the sound shooting out the back of the room. LOVE that sheeaat. But is that more important than having better quality up front? Nope....not for me. And I would bet that MOST people who hear a decent 5.1 system vs. a REALLY good 2.1 or 3.1 system would choose the latter.
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#14 of 29 John Garcia

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Posted March 09 2006 - 11:10 AM

What I like is a well mixed multichannel DVD-A or SACD. I'm mostly a 2ch guy, but if the m/c mix is done well, I can enjoy it just as much or more (DSOTM, Porcupine Tree's In Absentia and Deadwing, etc...). 20s & 470 up front with Atoms as surrounds would make a very nice setup. A buddy of mine is using that front stage and I liked it a lot (I recommended it to him Posted Image ).
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#15 of 29 Andrew Pratt

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Posted March 09 2006 - 02:36 PM

Quote:
Are you sure the Atoms will blend with the front stage???


Yes they'll be plenty good enough to blend with the 20's up front. The 470 center is also a worthwhile upgrade over the 170 as dialog will sound so much more clear and it won't get congested when all he!! breaks loose onscreen. Besides if at some point you do want to upgrade at least you've have a solid base to build off...if you went with the 4 atoms and the 170 you'd essentially have to dump everything and start over.

#16 of 29 ryan.p

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Posted March 09 2006 - 11:53 PM

Ok people did not mean to confuse anyone. I bought me a set of the Paradigm Studio 20 v.3's because they are my absolute favorite speaker(s) period. My neighbors have complained so much about my music being too loud that I sold my Paradigm PS1000 v.4 10" powered sub. When I listen to music in stereo I really dont need a sub because I am more than happy with my 20's performance. Keep in mind I do NOT listen to multi-channel music and my preference has been and always will be on 2-channel music listening. However, I do watch a lot of dvds and as such want very good home theater effect. So, I purchased (2) Acoustic Research 8" powered subs for my LFE. These two together walk all over my former PS1000 v.4 10" sub and works very well for both ht and music applications. I also bought a set of the Athena Point 5 MKII speaker set that is used primarily for when watching dvds. Hence, "A" is on the Athena Point 5 fronts and "B" is set to my Studio 20's. Therefore, when I listen to 2-channel music I set my receiver to the "B" setting whereas when watching dvds it is set on the "A" setting. This arrangement has worked very well for me and I must say it sounds real good. The only problem is the Point 5 center channel speaker. That is, it is a little on the weak side. And, I can NOT shell out a lot of money at this time so I have looked for alternatives. This is why I thought I might move my Athena package to the bedroom or sell it and go the Atom, cc-170 route. But, then I would have to get another receiver if I put the Athenas in my bedroom which is more than I want to spend. Hope now you all can understand why I was asking these questions.
"It is NOT about what brand of audio components you use but RATHER how you use them that counts--only YOU know what YOU prefer. It really is as simple as that."

#17 of 29 ryan.p

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Posted March 10 2006 - 12:02 AM

Oh btw the cc-470 v.4 is now $700 because Paradigm had a small price increase across the board. Therefore, if I go the cc-470 and the Atom route it will be too much for my budget. So, that leaves me with the alternative. The Athena Audition C1.2 center would be a big improvement and maybe get a set of the B1.2's for the fronts. Both can be had at audioadvisor.com for around $300 including shipping. I could then use my Point 5 fronts for the surrounds which would still all be timbre matched. Or, for not much more money I could go the Atom-cc-170 route. IMHO, either way it will work well enough for me. It will all depend on my money situation which is not too good right now. If that changes then I will w/o a doubt go the cc-470 and Atom route. Until then I may have to consider one of the alternatives. Thanks guys for all of your advice.
"It is NOT about what brand of audio components you use but RATHER how you use them that counts--only YOU know what YOU prefer. It really is as simple as that."

#18 of 29 Andrew Pratt

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Posted March 10 2006 - 01:54 AM

Stay the course and look for a used 470 center. There isn't much difference between the various versions so don't worry about buying a v2 or v3 center to match your 20's.

#19 of 29 Elliot_W

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Posted March 10 2006 - 01:57 AM

Ryan - you are so right. My wife is always complaining she does not hear the dialogue well with the Athena Point 5. That CC has got to go!

I too will look to upgrade the CC. Hint: Athena's www sells new old stock direct at considerable discounts.

Thanks for confirming what I've been thinking.

Elliot

#20 of 29 John Garcia

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Posted March 10 2006 - 03:45 AM

Quote:
John how do you think the Athena B1.2's for fronts, C1.2 for the center, and another pair of B1.2's for rears would work as compared to the Paradigm scenarios??? Oh, btw I agree about the Onix speakers BUT there is no center channel available.

I think the Athenas are every bit as good as the Performance line, and they can be found online for less, so they are a better value. Musically, I liked the midrange, but the tweeter still sounded a bit sybilant at times. For the price though, I'd go with the Athenas.

The x-center will be coming soon. It will be a sealed (I believe) MTM version, and that is what I hope will be going in my bedroom system next.
HT: Emotiva UMC-200, Emotiva XPA-3, Carnegie Acoustics CSB-1s + CSC-1, GR Research A/V-1s, Epik Empire, Oppo BDP-105, PS4, PS3,URC R-50, APC-H10, Panamax 5100 Bluejeans Cable
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(stolen) : Marantz SR-8300, GR Research A/V-2s, Sony SCD-222ES SACD, Panasonic BD-65, PS3 60G (250G)

Everybody is a genius, but if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it’ll spend its whole life believing that it is stupid.” – Albert Einstein

 






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