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speakers, BIC America?


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#21 of 48 OFFLINE   Raptor382

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Posted August 21 2013 - 04:09 PM

didnt see the primus 363's for $234 a pair on frys, they have them listed for $329 each.  still something to look at.

 

How are JBL speakers?  Looking at these JBL ES80 6" Floorstanding Speaker - Black - Single

 

Frys has them listed at a "special price" for $144 each.



#22 of 48 OFFLINE   Raptor382

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Posted August 22 2013 - 10:10 AM

Ok, how about we do it like this.  years ago, i had a set of Paradigm, the mains were monitor 9's, the center, dont even remember but it was huge, the surrounds were dipoles, again, dont recall the model, but they were fairly large, and I had a couple of their subs, one was a 12 and another was a 15.

 

Those speakers were hooked up to, if i recall, the Yamaha RX-V1600, and that system sounded pretty good.  Now, using those speakers as a reference point, of the brands i've listed, which ones, if you can, would be better or worse than the paradigm setup? 

 

There is a pair of monitor 11's on ebay for a fairly good price, also, the JBL ES80 speakers on their website are running for $144 each (says they are normally a $499 speaker).  I may run up to Frys this weekend to listen to their Polk and Infinity speakers, but the ones like HDT, HSU, and Axiom, since they are internet sales only, I cant listen to.



#23 of 48 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted August 22 2013 - 11:19 AM

Only you can decide.

My four theatres are...

BIC V in 9.1
Infinity Crescendo in 5.1
DCM TF in 7.1
Polk S in 5.1

Subs do not match the 5/7/9.

#24 of 48 OFFLINE   Raptor382

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Posted August 22 2013 - 07:08 PM

ok, im going to start narrowing it down.  I have some brands that i'm going to start comparing and such.  First thing I need to do is figure out which type of speaker I need.

 

Floorstanding vs. bookshelf.  I know that floorstanding are supposed to be better, larger, usually larger drivers, bigger cabinet for better resonation.  However, are they that much better that would warrant spending the extra money on them?  Also, living in an apartment, would I get any benefit from a tower over a bookshelf.

 

and lastly, if given the choice between an average tower and a good bookshelf, which way would generally be better.

 

sorry for all the questions, just trying to get pointed in the right direction.



#25 of 48 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted August 22 2013 - 07:27 PM

Tower vs bookshelf is a question that will rage on forever, ad infinitum.

 

Towers are usually more efficient than their bookshelf brethren. 

Smaller woofers(although in today's speakers where multitudes of 5-6 is the norm, versus 10-12 of yore) are easier to control. Even at that a 5" and 8" both made from the exact "modern" come material...weight is a non-factor(unlike back when paper was the norm).

 

I always favor towers.(and I mean in all positions...other than center. Even then, my center Infinity is a homemade speaker that doubles as the TV stand itself)

 

Why?

 

Cause you don't have to figure out where to put them...other than where on the floor.



#26 of 48 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted August 22 2013 - 07:31 PM

My speaker brand of choice...when the customer has the budget. This speaker epitomizes why I choose tower rear speakers...

 

http://totemacoustic...i/columns/arro/



#27 of 48 OFFLINE   Raptor382

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Posted August 23 2013 - 07:45 AM

oh, and my budget.  it's slim i know, but this is what im looking to stay around:

 

$300-500/pr for mains

$250-300 center

$300-500/pr surrounds

$450-550 for sub

 

i know that limits me on what i can get and is going to put me in the lower end, but, surely somewhere i can find a decent set of speakers used or new for that price range.



#28 of 48 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted August 23 2013 - 07:55 AM

Have you checked your local used market?

#29 of 48 OFFLINE   Raptor382

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Posted August 23 2013 - 08:51 AM

ok, i found a sale going on at frys for the Primus 363 speakers, amazing deal at $214 a pair (normally $650 a pair).  Im going to look hard at those, however, in two different reviews, there might be a problem.  While the speakers are rated at 8ohms, both reviews seem to indicate that the speaker is actually a 4ohm speaker, due to how some of the frequencies dip.  They said that because of this, it may pose a problem for some lower end amps

 

Audioholics review had this to say:

 

"Although Harman rates the Infinity Primus P363 as 8-ohm speakers, what I measured tells a much different story. These are clearly 4-ohm speakers. They appear to be tuned just below 50Hz, but the saddle points are quite asymmetric. This indicates a system tuning too low for the available box size needed to produce a more optimal response. The 4 ohm dip between 100Hz to 200Hz is a bit concerning for those wanting to use these speakers with budget A/V receivers. Even if bass managed, these speakers can present a rather strenuous load if the amplifiers in the A/V receiver don’t take kindly to 4-ohm loads. I found that Infinity employed a 4-ohm tweeter as evident by the impedance dip above 10kHz. I believe they did this in attempt to increase speaker sensitivity."

 

With the Yamaha RX-V871, is this going to be a problem?



#30 of 48 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted August 23 2013 - 08:58 AM

The 871 won't have a problem.

#31 of 48 OFFLINE   Raptor382

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Posted August 23 2013 - 09:03 AM

also, the current speaker wire im running is 16guage (rocketfish brand from best buy).  the front speakers are about 3-4 foot from the reciever, the surrounds on the back of the room, will take about 40 foot of wire each.  will i need to upgrade to 14 or 12 guage wire for this amp/speaker combo?

 

also, in addition to the 363's for mains, they are also offering a pair of bookshelf speakers for $99/pr (normally $200/pr), that I could possibly use for my surrounds...the only thing left would be to choose a sub.



#32 of 48 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted August 23 2013 - 09:07 AM

Besides, it has pre-outs.

#33 of 48 OFFLINE   Raptor382

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Posted August 23 2013 - 09:17 AM

thanks for all your help schan, i know ive been taxing with all my questions, but i think im going to go give these a listen.  if i like what i hear, i may be taking them home



#34 of 48 OFFLINE   gene c

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Posted August 23 2013 - 01:45 PM

With a $1300 budget for speakers don't settle for the 363's if you decide you don't care for them. Be sure to listen to some others while you're there. $234/pr isn't a great price if you like something else better. I've never seen the Primus center (PC351) on sale at Frys but it's available elsewhere (like Amazon).

 

I'd also give a look at Craigslist. Some great deals can be found there. Used speakers are a pretty safe bet. A guy in Sacramento is selling a pair of Polk LSi25's in supposedly great shape (in Cherry to boot!) for only $500. Very tempting even with the 3 1/2 drive road-trip.

 

If you're going to run the speaker wires in the wall or between floors you're supposed to use CL-2 or CL-3 wire to comply with most local fire codes. Monoprice.com is a good place to look.

 

http://www.monoprice...&seq=1&format=2


Edited by gene c, August 23 2013 - 01:47 PM.

"Everyday room": Panasonic 58" Plasma, Dish HD DVR, Pioneer Elite vsx-23, BDP-23 BR, dv58avi universal dvd player, Paradigm Studio 20 V1, CC-450, Dayton HSU-10 subwoofer.

"Movie/Music room": Toshiba 65" DLP, Dish HD receiver, Marantz 7005, CC-4003, BD-7006, Polk LSI25's-LSi7's-LSiC, 2 original Dayton 10" "Mighty-Mites" subwoofers. (subject to change without notice).
 
Also have  MB Quart Vera VS05 +.....too much to list. Help me.
 
 

 


#35 of 48 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted August 23 2013 - 06:13 PM

For $1300...

 

Amazon has...

 

Mordaunt Short Carnival and Aviano(Carnival leaves more for a better sub now, Aviano would be worth forgoing the .1 for a while)

Def Tech combination of ProMonitor 800/1000. The Studio Monitor 400 is the lowest it has been.

Energy CF and CB(notable the CF30)

Yamaha NS(The NS-F150 is actually quite good)

Jamo S 426 HCS (In "wenge" color. Have no idea how the "entire set" costs less than a pair of S426 by itself)

 

A4L has...

 

The Mordaunt Short Carnival 1 at $100/pair with the center at $90, with shipping included.

Boston Acoustics A series at decent prices

KEF C series. The C7 is $200each

 

Between NewEgg and TigerDirect you'd have to hop and skip between them, but the JBL ES and Studio could easily be under $1000(like one has the center priced nice, but the bookshelves are too high...then vice versa)



#36 of 48 OFFLINE   Raptor382

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Posted August 23 2013 - 08:09 PM

ok, after having looked at numbers pretty much straight for the last two days, i realized that i'm never going to "know" what a good choice is on speakers.  Being that there are very few places to actually audition speakers, apparently even in houston (the only store that I could find in houston that appeared to have a storefront was Modia, there was another but i dont recall the name).

 

So, i went to frys.  they had 2 rooms of speakers set up, one room for their higher end stuff and another room for the rest.  In the high end room they had a spread of Klipsch reference stuff, a setup of polk, and some martin logans.  in the other room were the lower end klipsch, polk, plus some JBL, infinity, sony and pioneer.

 

I first listened to the infinity and thought.."these sound like they are in a tunnel, vocals were very, muddy or boxy".  so i went over and found the polk tsx330's (i think they were).  they sounded great, and thought, these might be the ones.  the polk retail for $249 and were on sale for $199, the infinity retail for $329 and were on sale for $107.  I asked the salesman why the difference in price, yet the polk sounded better.  He informed me that the polk were bi-amped and the infinity were not.  Eventually, they offered, and i accepted, that they move the polk speakers over to where the infinity's were and hook them up in the same config using teh same amp, so I could get a more direct comparison.  I must say, they still sounded pretty good, better than the infinity speakers, more detailed and more crisp and louder.  as i switched between the two speaker sets, listening to their celine dion dvd they had in, playing "all coming back to me now", i thought that her voice just sounded muddy or in a tube on the infinity, but seemed clearer on the polks.

 

I then had him switch to an acoustical version of Dave matthews "Crash into me" (radio city), and again, on the polk, it seemed you could hear the strings of the guitars more vividly, however, the "tunnel" sound of the infinity speakers was less than it was previously.  I think I realized what a big difference was, is that the polk speakers had a lot better bass than the infinity P363's, but that i will be running a subwoofer, so that really doesnt matter, right?

 

Also, while in the room, i moved around a bit, and noticed that the closer i got to the infinity's, and crouched down just outside an even plane with them and in the center, they started to sound better.

 

So, i asked about the polks, of course which they had none in stock at that store, and to get them would either be a 5 day wait for them to get them from the store across town...or I drive 45 mintues across houston to get them.  Being the impatient and impulsive and lazy guy i am, i decided not to deal with driving across houston.  Also, the difference in price, $100 for each speaker, I wasnt sure that the difference was enough to warrant the extra money, especially considering i still have to get surrounds, a center and a sub.

 

So, i walked out with the speakers.  For $214/pr, it's a great deal.  However, i still think maybe i should look at the polks, but, going to the polks is going to increase my spending. 

 

Truth is, there are a thousand different speaker combinations out there, and a thousand different companies that I will always be saying "woulda, coulda, shoulda", but without being able to actually go an listen to them, it's all just a hip shot in the dark to pick one.  so, i suppose ill just stick with the p363's and make the best of it, if i find i really dont like em, i can always sell them or take them back and upgrade later.  And really, until I can get my speaker budget to where i can spend alot more money, is there really going to be "that" much difference between speaker brands in the low end?

 

there is one question i do have about them though.  these speakers are not bi-ampable.  is this going to be a problem or a major drawback?

 

other than that, i guess ill find the matching surrounds and center channel, select a sub and ill be done.

 

thanks for all your help.  maybe i should take the next 6 months, start putting some money aside and really start researching speakers, then maybe ill be in a better postion to make a more informed choice :D



#37 of 48 OFFLINE   gene c

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Posted August 24 2013 - 07:16 AM

Retail stores are usually very ppor places to audition speakers, but still better then nothing. In your own home is of course the best place to audition them. Room acoustics play a big part in how things sound. I also think most people kind of ge used to the way a speaker sounds. They usually tend to grow on you.

 

I've often thought most consumer level speakers are tuned on the bright side to offer more "impact" to the casual audio consumer while listenning to them in stores. Bose doesn't allow their speakers to be in thse audition rooms. that's why you usually fnd them by themselves at the end of an isle.

 

I've always prefered a softer, warmer sound over a brighter one. But we're all different.

 

There can be a significant difference in sound between speakers, even in the consumer level end of the price spectrum. That's why it's near impossible to just blindly recommend anything. What I like, you may not. I just try nd find the good valuesand let the individual decide for theselves.

 

I started with a set of Onkyo's from their first receiver/speaker package, the HT-500. Not bad for what they were. Then upgraded to a full set of Polk RTi's. Way too bright and harsh sounding for me so out they went and in came some Swan Diva's. A huge improvement. All frequencies seems to arrive at the same spl. Used them for 5-6 years. But, wanted something better so tried a set of Revel Concerta's, very similar to Infinity beta's. Better then the Swans in some areas but not good enough. Bought some Dynaudio Audience 40's and WOW! Huge soundstage, glorious tweeters and over-all great sounding. Bought some 50's and a C122 to round out the set. But wanted more still. Bought some Audience 80 towers and was some-what disappointed. Oh well. Put those aside and bought some Polk LSI 25's, 7's and an LSiC. Fantastic speakers. I'm sure there are better ones out there but my search has stopped, for at least a while.


"Everyday room": Panasonic 58" Plasma, Dish HD DVR, Pioneer Elite vsx-23, BDP-23 BR, dv58avi universal dvd player, Paradigm Studio 20 V1, CC-450, Dayton HSU-10 subwoofer.

"Movie/Music room": Toshiba 65" DLP, Dish HD receiver, Marantz 7005, CC-4003, BD-7006, Polk LSI25's-LSi7's-LSiC, 2 original Dayton 10" "Mighty-Mites" subwoofers. (subject to change without notice).
 
Also have  MB Quart Vera VS05 +.....too much to list. Help me.
 
 

 


#38 of 48 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted August 24 2013 - 07:50 AM

My favorite speaker ever?

Apogee Centaur Major.

Apogee made Martin Logan look(and sound) like they deserved to be at Walmart.

#39 of 48 OFFLINE   Type A

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Posted August 24 2013 - 08:54 AM

there is one question i do have about them though.  these speakers are not bi-ampable.  is this going to be a problem or a major drawback?

 

 

Its not really a problem or a drawback per se but as I mentioned in post #12:
 
"On a side note dont underestimate the bookshelf speakers in the Primus line, theyre big bookshelf speakers that develop serious bass, they love good power."

 

I would only recommend the Primus line if you are driving them with excessive power.  The other speaker lines you are considering would likely be more forgiving with AVR power and outperform Primus.  In my experience Primus is justification for a powerful dedicated amp, without it they seem anemic and thin.


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Hsu VTF-2 MK3 (2) & MBM-12 MK2 (2)

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#40 of 48 OFFLINE   SteveMc

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Posted August 28 2013 - 10:24 AM

Just playing devil advocate here

 

I did a lot of research on Bic when shopping for speakers.  For some reason Bic is just too good for pro reviews, pretty crappy policy for an ID company regardless of their return policy.  Frankly, I dont trust my own ears any more than I trust the thousands of gushing user reviews for the Bic speaker line.  Just as a simple example a quick search of Infinity Primus (a direct competitor to Bic in price) reveals pro evaluations in great enough numbers to form a consensus of the line, mostly older reviews but they do exist.  That right there made it very easy to check Bic off my list regardless of their following or their company past.  I want measurements and evaluations by persons with far more experience than myself and that wont be possible with a company with a great following and arrogant company policy like Bic.  Bic kinda reminds me of Bose in that way, and thats not a good thing.

 

  

I don't quite follow your statements on BIC, can you elaborate? Do you mean they don't allow their speakers to be reviewed?

 

There are many good user reviews of the speakers on Amazon.  They obviously aren't audiophile speakers.  Pro reviews are done by people who make it their jobs to know the difference between every conceivable spec on a speaker.  Is your ear going to be able to tell the difference if there is an extra .5% THD, or if the tweeters EQ range isn't as high as another model $1000 more expensive? Their ears might, but mine wouldn't.  If your ears can't tell, and they sound good to you - for the price they sound like a great entry level speaker.  If you are the type of person who, by just knowing some its drawback but not actually hearing it, is enough to bother you then the BICs are not for you.

 

Personally I always have my own battle with every purchase - my brain telling me to watch my budget and "can you really tell a difference between this and one that is 20% more"?


 

 





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