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B&W 600 Series vs Paradigm Reference Series?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by David Barteaux, Mar 28, 2002.

  1. David Barteaux

    David Barteaux Stunt Coordinator

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    Who has auditioned both of these lines, and who was the winner in your opinion?
     
  2. FrankB

    FrankB Agent

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    I thought the B&W 600 series were dull sounding compared to the Paradigms. I did like the B&W CDM NT series, but the B&W dealer and the Paradigm dealer are an hour apart so I couldn't do a real side by side test. I bought the Paradigm Studio Series (which were quite a bit cheaper).
     
  3. Thomas F

    Thomas F Stunt Coordinator

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    I compared the B&W 602 S2's with the Paradigm Studio 40's side-by-side and the Paradigm's won. At the time, all I had to drive them was a borrowed FM/CD boom box of poor quality with the speakers on a carpeted floor. I admit that this was a very bad way to compare the speakers, but it was all I had at the time. I just liked the Paradigm's better. I can't explain it, but I feel I made the right choice. I also liked the B&W's, just not as well.
     
  4. Mark C.

    Mark C. Supporting Actor

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    Comparing the Paradigm Reference series with B&W CDM series is more appropriate than comparing to the 600 series. I would equate the B&W 600 series to the Paradigm Monitors.
     
  5. Bob-N

    Bob-N Supporting Actor

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    I guess I'm the odd man out. I auditioned these two brands (602's vs. 40's) and preferred the 602's.
    As I recall, the equipment for the 40's were a Marantz SR8000 using analog connections and for the 602's, Rotel 2 channel separates using the digital connections.
    What I didn't like about the 40's was their reproduction of women's vocals. I ran some live acoustic Heart CD tracks and their harmonies got quite mixed up. The 602's sounded clearer with better separation between the two sister's voices. 40's had a much better low end. Knowing that I had the low end covered with my 20-39PC (now with improved driver installed), I opted for the 602's.
    But take it with a grain of salt: different equipment, different rooms (from two different stores but same day auditions) and possibly different material that you listen to.
    BTW, just recently I moved up to the CDM1NTs last week and had to return them because of a blemish on one of them (damn!).[​IMG] They're two weeks away because they were out of stock (double damn!)[​IMG] [​IMG]
    Bob
     
  6. Jason P. Brett

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    I agree with Mark that the comparing the new 600s with the Paradigm Reference line is probably not really a good comparison. They do match up better (price-wise) with Paradigm's Monitor line. I can offer some insight into that. I just bought a pair of DM603s3's, and they pretty much smoke the Paradigm Monitor 9's, which are similar in size, driver arrangement, and price. Compared to the 603s, the Monitors have weak, flabby bass, and no midrange presence to speak of. I've heard the Paradigm Reference stuff is a lot better; I hope so. Good luck, and have fun auditioning speakers!

    Jason

    PS. I'm right there with Bob, ordered a LCR60 to go with the 603's-still no sign of it!!
     
  7. DavidY

    DavidY Supporting Actor

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    In the same price range? Yes, if one is in Canada where the Paradigm Reference line is well priced. [​IMG]
    In Canada, the B&W 600 series is in the same price range as the Paradigm Reference series. Several years ago, the B&W 602 was competitively priced with the Studio/20 (both were version 1)...here in Canada.
    Dave
     
  8. David Barteaux

    David Barteaux Stunt Coordinator

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    How about the Studio CC. Can it out perform the LCR6 with respect to dialoge reproduction. I am more concerned with that than say low frequency extension or power handling.

    Your input should give me what to listen for when auditioning both models.

    Also B&W 600 is priced competively with Paradigm here in Canada.
     
  9. Mark C.

    Mark C. Supporting Actor

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    I forgot about the Paradigm Canadian discount. I own seven B&W speakers, but, if the opportunity had presented itself and I could have purchased Paradigm Reference speakers for the price of the B&W 600 series, I would have done it.
     
  10. Russell _T

    Russell _T Supporting Actor

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    I have listened to them both and prefered the Paradigms. However when you move up to the CDM series, they are much more comparable, and I prefer the build quality of the B&W's at that level.
     
  11. Arron H

    Arron H Second Unit

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    I agree with Mark C. If I could have gotten the Cdn discount on Paradigm Reference speakers locally, I would have went with Paradigm Reference over my B&W 600s. However, my local dealer would not budge and refused to offer any discount on a complete system. My local B&W dealer was offering 20% on the 600 series and voila, I am a B&W owner [​IMG] I would definately choose the CDM Nt's over Paradigm Reference and will probably trade up next year. I have a 100% trade-in allowance for the first year and this was another carrot in favor of B&W. And OBTW, I really love the sound of B&W speakers [​IMG]
     
  12. James Bergeron

    James Bergeron Supporting Actor

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    I chose the 602's over the 40's reason, build quality and upgrade abliity. In Canada the 40's are about the same price of the 602's. The 40's seem to have more bass but I think it's a perception thing, the B&W's are cleaner in the mid and smooth out the bass rather than booming it like the 40's resulting in a perception that they aren't as bass rich but they can go deep and clean when needed.

    That's my opinion.
     
  13. Paul Chalk

    Paul Chalk Stunt Coordinator

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    Just last week, I did an A/B comparison of the Studio 60 and the 603 S2. I found the B&W's to be the winner. The Paradigm's were a bit too bright and the midrange wasn't as great as the B&W's. The bass response from both speakers were about the same, which BTW, was quite impressive. But you really shouldn't base your decision on the opinions posted here. You should go and compare for yourself.

    BTW, the speakers were being powered by a Rotel receiver (can't remember the model #).
     
  14. David Barteaux

    David Barteaux Stunt Coordinator

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    I just auditioned the Paradigm Studio 100's and I was a little disapointed. In layman terms, I found the Paradigm not as clean in the midrange as the B&W 604 but overall was cleaner than the B&W if that makes sense. I got the dealer to set up the JMLab Cobalt 816 and found it to better than the 100's but did not go as low. But what was there was smoother and tighter than the B&W and Paradigm. The JMLab's were a bit bright but they are the same price as Paradigm 100 and B&W 604. I think with higher end electronics they are better.
    I think I am going to move away from this range of speaker and move up to B&W Nautilus 805's or something similar in price. I think my taste has moved past the midfi floor-stander. So many decisions [​IMG]
     
  15. Ken Hoyme

    Ken Hoyme Extra

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    I recently put a set of Paradigm Reference speakers on order. I did listen to a set of B&W CM4s before I finalized my decision. I thought that the B&Ws were much thinner sounding on the reference disks I used at my listening sessions -- pipe organ, male and female vocals. In addition, I was regularly aware of the location of the speakers when I listened with my eyes closed -- something I did not sense when I listened to the 'digms.

    I am aware that this was likely a condition of the specific set up conditions. The two stores I listened in had different equipment, room sizes, treatments, etc. Given the many recommends I got on the B&W line (the VP of Product Development at work had B&W Nautilus until he upgraded to Revels with Levinson amps -- he knows his stuff, but hadn't listened to any Paradigms) I really think I could have found a happy combination in the B&W line.

    I thing the CDMNTs would have been a fairer match -- but for some reason this store didn't carry them. When I asked for what the next step up was from the CM4s, I was told it would be the Nautilus 804. A big jump in price!! Out of my budget.

    To be honest, I had already called my nearest Canadian dealer for a Paradigm quote and found that the set I wanted that I was quoted around $3600US locally (plus tax) would cost me $4100CA (no tax) -- About $2600US. (Studio/60s, Studio/CC, Studio/ADPs and a Servo-15) Given that a full 5.1 system with CM4s was quoted to me at $3352, I figured it would take $4000-4500 in a CDMNT series to beat the Paradigm -- for the difference, I can build the HTPC I want to drive the PJ.

    As others have said, go take a listen. I am sure you could be happy with either. It comes down to personal preference, and your own perception of bang-for-the-buck.

    Ken
     
  16. Matt Meyer

    Matt Meyer Stunt Coordinator

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    Ken,
    Did you go through Thunder Bay or somewhere else? Curious because I'm looking for some more studios for in the game room. The local dealer here in Eden Prairie is a good dealer but not the lowest priced.
    thanks,
    Matt[​IMG]
     
  17. Ken Hoyme

    Ken Hoyme Extra

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    Matt,

    Yup -- Power Centre -- found it on the Paradism site.

    Ken
     
  18. BobRoulier

    BobRoulier Second Unit

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    I listened to some B&W 805s with the htm2 through a rotel 1095 amp very nice and precice no distortion at all at high volumes I almost bought them just for grins I said let me hear those studio 100s and cc well I couldnt believe what I heard the paradigms sounded incredible they actually had a fully sound to them the center channels dialoge was incredible and the 100s sound stage was fuller probably because they are a full range speaker and the base is awsome. Hey just my opinion and my ears but I have listened to a lot of speakers and I found my speakers[​IMG] they do need lot of power to make them sing with the right amp and pre pro youll be very happy!
    Bob
     
  19. Matt Meyer

    Matt Meyer Stunt Coordinator

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    Ken,

    What was your cost savings buying from Canada versus here. And do you have a contact in Thunder Bay you wish to devulge?

    Thanks for the help,

    Matt
     
  20. David Barteaux

    David Barteaux Stunt Coordinator

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    I was quoted $2250 US for Paradigm Studio 100, Studio 40, and Studio CC from Peak Audio in Halifax Nova Scotia. The list price in Canada is:

    Studio 100:~ $1600 US or $2400 CDN

    Studio 40 :~ $750 US or $1100 CDN

    Studio CC :~ $400 US or $600 CDN

    I think the Servo-15 Lists for $1800 CDN.

    Peak Audio does not quote online nor do they ship to the US. So If you lived in Maine, that would be your closest trip there.
     

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