Energy vs Paradigm vs Polk Audio vs KEF

Discussion in 'Speakers & Subwoofers' started by RobL, Aug 20, 2003.

  1. RobL

    RobL Extra

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    Hey guyz,

    this might be the most general question..but i really would like some insight on these 4 brands. i went around after taking advice on this board, and i've narrowed down to these 4 brands in terms of sound. I am talking about 1000 dollars for 2 front mains...and 500 dollars for center. Rears I'll add on later...gonna use some JBLs i already have for now. So i guess i am looking at Energy C (Crap, forgot which number) vs Monitor vs RTi vs Q eh?

    hope i get get some enlightenment here!

    thanx

    Rob.
     
  2. DonnyD

    DonnyD Screenwriter

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    I can speak well of Energy and Paradigm. My son has some older Energy RVS LCR and I have the Veritas and RVSS. I set up a friends Ht using Paradigm and was impressed with those too. As a matter of fact, I am setting up another HT for someone next month and Energy or Paradigm will get the nod.
    What I have found is that both are great but be sure to let them break in well before pushed or calibrated. Most shops I've been to either don't have them set up well or don't know how many hours are on their demos. Electronics and time does make a difference.
     
  3. george king

    george king Supporting Actor

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    I am a long time Kef fan, and think the new ones are great. If you are going to go this route, then get the Q7s for fronts. They are worth the extra money, and once again, I do not quite understand why they made the Q5 (just like the Q55s), and the Q9 for the center.

    However, may I suggest an alternative. Why not get the new XQ1s for the fronts, and run a phantom center, and add the center later. The XQ1s are much much better than the Q series.
     
  4. Doug_B

    Doug_B Screenwriter

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    You might want to see what you can get in the Paradigm Studio series for those prices, which is a definite step up from the Monitor line. Do note, though, that the new Studio version 3 line is more expensive. Most folks that pursue $1K and up for mains go for floorstanders; please confirm your intentions in this area. For floorstanders, a very good deal could land you the Studio 60's for around that price. I have no clue about the Studio v3 center, though.

    Doug
     
  5. Stephen Hopkins

    Stephen Hopkins HW Reviewer
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    I myself am a very happy Polk RT owner and prefer them to the Paradigm Monitor line, but I also did a bit or bargain shopping and got my whole 5 speaker setup (RT800s, CS245, RT/FX surrounds) for less than $500. The Polk RTi series are really great speakers, but are probably going to be outclassed in the price range you're looking at. You may want to consider the Polk LSi's in that price range, especially since they use the same tweeter used by Onix Rockets which get RAVE reviews around the HT forum. You will, however, need a receiver that can handle You may also want to give the Rockets themselves a good look. Swan Divas are another internet direct brand that are VERY well liked and have a similar design/sound/look.

    Hope this helps [​IMG]
     
  6. RobL

    RobL Extra

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    regarding the phantom, can someone please explain how that works? thanx
     
  7. Shane Martin

    Shane Martin Producer

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    Phantom mode goes 2 ways as far as I have tried:

    1.) Make sure your speaker placement is ideal. This is not often the case for alot of people. When placed right speakers will image so well that the center is not needed if you are sitting in the sweet spot. Now if you are off center, a center speaker is a must.

    2.) use a phantom mode on your receiver/preamp to simulate a center.

    Personally I prefer method 1.
     
  8. Adam_D

    Adam_D Stunt Coordinator

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    i have a full energy set up (c-7 mains, c-c1 center, cr-1's for rears), sub is a sony for now. i have a sony 4es pushing them all and think they sound great. [​IMG] from me [​IMG]
     
  9. Tab Nichols

    Tab Nichols Stunt Coordinator

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    I am really happy with my Polks... Great value for the price you pay. I tend to prefer them over the Paradigims, as well as the Energys, but I have no experience with Kef.


    Everything however, is subjective. I personally prefer the Polks, but thats based on my ears and budget. The only way to properly decide is to go and hear them for yourself.

    Even if it isnt readily available, take time, and go out of your way to do so. Its the only way to make a truely informaed decision. You dont want to be kicking yourself in six months when you hear the "other" brand when you just dropped over a grand on whatever you went with.

    When you spend that kind of money, its best that you know what your spending it on.

    Good luck in your search.
     
  10. RobL

    RobL Extra

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    my only problem is, i haven't been able to find a store that carried all 4 brands!

    ah well, i guess i just have to shop harder! anyone knows of a store in the GTA that has all 4 brands?
     
  11. Tab Nichols

    Tab Nichols Stunt Coordinator

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    Even though side x side comparison is the best way to compare speakers, its not the only way.

    This is what I did when I first started narrowing down the field... Take a notepad to your local dealer and listen to the brand that they carry. On the pad, right down everything that you can possibly think of about that speaker. Include model, price, imaging, soundstage height and depth, warmth, harshness of treble, low end extension, power of midbass, etc...

    Do this with all four sets of speakers.

    Now, armed with your notepad and all the details, go home and read it all over. You should be able to eliminate all but one or two sets of speakers with this list. Look for what you want in the set of speakers, and compare the speakers against each other based on that.

    Now, when you have only two left on your list, go buy them. BOTH. Now you can get that all important in-house side x side comparison.

    Any respectable speaker dealer has a return them if you dont like them" policy, so you should have no problems. Listen to both sets, and give them a fair comparison. The difference, is that now, you hear exactly the way they are going to sound in your house, and you can turn them up as loud as you like, and adjust them how you will.

    If you cant decide after an hour which set you prefer, give them a week. By that point, you will be able to tell the difference with your eyes closed. Then, simply return the set you dont like, and buy your center channel to match.

    I guarantee this will get you the best results. [​IMG]
     

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