Ascend, NHT, JBL, Fluance HELP!

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Aaron Whitaker, Jan 28, 2003.

  1. Aaron Whitaker

    Aaron Whitaker Stunt Coordinator

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    I've been looking at upgrading my HT speakers. I've been leaning toward the Ascend CBM-170's for front, center, and three surrounds (6.1) and the Hsu VTF-2.

    But then their are all these other names that I seee popping up. I'm looking at about $1,000-1,500 for everything.

    Am I making the right decision or are there better speakers for that budget?

    Has anyone compared these brands to each other?

    If I could listen to them at a shop, that would be great but most of these brands aren't sold in shops. So I'm kind of relying on people's impressions that have bought these brands and have had the chance to compare them. Thanks.
     
  2. ColinM

    ColinM Cinematographer

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    I've been using NHT for years and have no desire to change, but I often want a taste of something new. So, I spend my friends' money on other things. Boston, JBL, etc. All sound nice, really.
     
  3. MatthewK

    MatthewK Stunt Coordinator

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    Duplicate due to browser lock-up.

    Sorry.

    Matthew
     
  4. MatthewK

    MatthewK Stunt Coordinator

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    Aaron you have email.... [​IMG]

    Didn't want to crowd the boards with my opinions as I have posted in other $1k - $1.5k threads similar things.

    Matthew
     
  5. Marcus Lewis

    Marcus Lewis Stunt Coordinator

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    What are your typical listening levels?

    Once it's not extreme 105 dbs+ at the listening position
    definitely go with the ascends ... Fantastic speakers ...
     
  6. Chris Quinn

    Chris Quinn Screenwriter

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    Read the review in the $ensible Sound issue #92 were the reviewer compares them with NHT SB3s at $600 a pair and calls it a draw.

    I have Ascend 170s that a bought for a secondary system. They quickly replaced my Paradigm Mini-monitor and Atoms in my main set up.

    I can't help you on Fluance and JBL but will throw Totem Dreamcatchers in the running at this price point.

    I know the listening part is hard but, if you don't like the Ascends you are only out shipping. Ascends are tough to beat at the price.
     
  7. Aaron Whitaker

    Aaron Whitaker Stunt Coordinator

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    The speakers will be used 70% movies and HD programming and 30% SACD music. I live in an apartment so I don't crank up that loud probably about 70-90db (I need to get out my sound meter to figure that out). Right now I have two towers in the front with no sub and they do good with bass but I want to get a sub and I don't think I need to pay the higher amount for towers if the sub takes care of most of the low end.

    The Ascends are hard to beat at the price and the only thing holding me back are the looks (I know I'm vain) but when the lights are down and the movie is cranking, does it really matter?

    Although some nice Paradigm Towers or Rocket Towers do look nice, I don't have the funds to go that route. I'm just waiting for someone to say "I had the Ascends and then discovered these speakers and Wow! they are so much better for the same price." But I think I have found the right choice and it is Ascends.
     
  8. Jose G

    Jose G Supporting Actor

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    Colin,
    I'm just interested- aside from the price of the Fluance, as low prices can often be a reason for not choosing a speaker system, why exactly do you say "Forget about Fluance?" I have no investment hear other than to find out more about this inexpensive system with great reviews, and if you have actually heard them, I would like some description as to the type of sound they produce. Low end, highs.,mids, bright, full, laid back, etc. I can't get over the great reviews on them.

    Chris,
    Could you be more specific as to why they replaced your minis and atoms. Were the atoms a bit too bright? The ascend better imaged? Again- I'm just curious.

    Aaron,
    I have heard great things about the ascends, especially paired with an VTF-2 sub. I think there is a good deal going on now for these at Ascends site. By the way, someone once posted about the ascends saying they did not look like much on the web site but were far better looking in person. Hope they are and hope you enjoy them. Let us know what you think. Happy listening!
     
  9. Alan M

    Alan M Second Unit

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    Aaron,
    speakers are a very personal thing,ones ear is always the deciding factor.If possible listen to as many sets as you can,then decide.

    Colin,
    I own the fluance sx-htb system and consider them the best sounding speakers I ,or many of my friends(who own much more expensive speaker systems)have heard for twice the money.Have you ever heard them? Whats your opinion based on?prejudice?

    The majority of us here seem to like what we own,thats the way its supposed to be.I neither knock or put down what others own.
    Sory about the rant.
     
  10. BradJudy

    BradJudy Stunt Coordinator

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    Aaron,

    Are you in Louisville, KY or Louisville, CO? If you're in Colorado, then you're a neighbor of mine and are welcome to visit and listen to my Ascends. PM me if you're in Colorado.

    My review of the Ascends (here has much higher resolution pictures than Ascend has on their own site for those curious about the looks. I'm also willing to take requests on additional pics if people are interested.
     
  11. ColinM

    ColinM Cinematographer

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    Sorry for digging on the Fluance camp - it's just that if I had $1k to spend, no way would I buy Fluance. Too many horror stories, whereas I've never EVER heard a bad thing about so many others.

    Just one guys opinion. If he's interested in them, he'll listen to them and not worry about my input too much.

    Sorry to ruffle feathers.
     
  12. Chris Quinn

    Chris Quinn Screenwriter

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    The Ascends replaced my Minis/Atoms because I started to hear things I'd never heard before. The high hat distinctly on its own, brushes on drums, finger plucking, breaths taken, depth, clarity, and warmth to voices(male and female) that weren't previously there. As my wife put it, the difference is when else were in the house with the old speakers you can tell somebody's playing a nice stereo in the other room with the Ascends the same clarity reaches thru out the house. She's not into stereo stuff but loves music. When she opened the front door for the first time with the Ascends running she immediately commented on how much better the sound was. Another way to put it is I have to stop and listen to the first few bars of a song sometimes when using the cd jukebox on random to recognize who is playing. The music never sounded like this before. The Ascends are amazing if you don't need your music cranked to maximum levels. So, I guess revealing is the term for the difference.
     
  13. CurtisC

    CurtisC Second Unit

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    I purchased the fluance floor standers for my son for christmas,about $250.We knew nothing about them,just great reviews.I and everyone in my house christmas morning were listening to them.All agreed they were the best possible sound for that price.Build quaility is very good for the price,looks,very pleasing,sounded better than my old polk 2000's.If you got lot's of money,lot's of choices,if you are on a very tight budget and want good quality at a great price,the Fluance are the most bang for the buck!Do not lump these in with other cheap speakers,they are very impressive.I have owned cheap and now have klipsch rf7,rc7,rs7,rsw15,the fluance really surprised me,close your eyes and you'll think they cost a grand!
     
  14. Jesse Blacklow

    Jesse Blacklow Cinematographer

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    My vote goes to the Ascends. I've got 3 CBM170s and 2 HTM200s mated with a VTF-2 (which I actually bought separately), as well as a pair of JBL S26s. The sound is amazing, and I can hear them through the entire house (which is a good thing). I'm getting rid of the JBLs and putting in two more Ascends in the very near future. I was lucky to get them over the holiday sale, but they're still priced very nicely. The best part is their upgrade program, which is based on their packaged sets. Check out their site for details. The only downside is their looks, i.e. average black boxes, but vanity is not my strong suit (and WAF is not an issue right now).
     

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