Fluance ES-1 2-way towers firstlook(longish)

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by JustinG, Jun 2, 2003.

  1. JustinG

    JustinG Stunt Coordinator

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    Hey all,

    Just thought I'd post up my experience with Fluance so far and the performance of my speakers, the ES-1 Towers.

    First of all, these forums are a huge resource to anyone looking at HT equipment. A major part of my decision to go with Fluance was a lot of the feedback from here.

    I was introduced to Fluance by my friend and member here JeremyJP. He had purchased a few weeks ago the AV-5's and the Fluance center channel.

    He also showed me these forums where I began the hunt.

    I started looking for new speakers to replace my DCM KX-12 towers (that I've had since '97) because the wife decided she didn't want those huge towers in the living room of our new house. I'd looked everywhere for something affordable but also aesthetically appealing.

    When I saw the Fluance ES-1s I knew they were the ones I wanted. So, I found a no reserve auction on Ebay and won them. Paid $310, $90 less than ordering direct from Fluance direct. I got them from Onebigbuy.com (an authorized Fluance dealer that I confirmed).

    I received my speakers Friday and began the hooking up. First thing I noticed, was how great they looked. The bases are and the top plate are gloss piano black. The cabinet is forged aluminum and there are some really great details to them; hex/allen screws for speaker mounts, chrome speaker mount rings, nice bi-wire 5 way connectors. But, I also noticed that there were no bridges for the bi-wire connectors. I thought I'd have to make some wiring to accomodate the bridges, but I emailed Fluance just in case. They said the crossovers are automatic and detect bi-wire or single wire hookup. I thought that was pretty cool.

    So, how do they sound?? Even out of the box I was suprised that they weren't super bright like I had feared. I first put on some cd's and ran them in stereo w/sub. They don't have much bass in them but they sound awesome. The soundstage is considerably wide opposed to their skinny towers. I sat in my listening position and I could have sworn the center channel was on.

    During the weekend, I tested more music and some DVD clips but nothing exhaustive. But, the speakers sound great. They fill beautifully in movies, and I haven't calibrated them with the other speakers I have. I just did some rough calibration by ear.

    So, I am extremely happy with my purchase and I'm not even close to the 10 hour break in period yet.

    So, chalk another positive score for Fluance. I plan on buying the center channel later for timbre matching and also one or two pair of the bipoles when I move later this month to the new house.

    For reference, I'm running these on a Kenwood VR-3080 (bout 3 years old), 100Wx5 DD 5.1 receiver.

    Here are links to a couple of pics of the speakers. The Fluance website doesn't do them justice. And I don't think I'm gonna miss my DCMs at all.

    http://home.attbi.com/~scrotus/es1x800.jpg
    http://home.attbi.com/~scrotus/es1x802.jpg
    http://home.attbi.com/~scrotus/es1x803.jpg
    http://home.attbi.com/~scrotus/es1x804.jpg
     
  2. JeremyJP

    JeremyJP Auditioning

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    Woohoo. Those are some great looking, and happy-to-hear-great-sounding, speakers. [​IMG]

    The AV-5s are great as well as the . I'm using the Monster 1-S biwires with the mains (2-S non-biwire for the center). I am still amazed at the front sound stage. The first times I listened to stereo music I kept getting up and putting my ear up to the center channel - I swore it was playing audio. But nope, the sound stage
    is that nice around the front.

    Well that's two happy Fluance owners. [​IMG]
     
  3. Rory Buszka

    Rory Buszka Supporting Actor

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    what about those bass drivers near the bottom of the tower?
     
  4. Ken Stuart

    Ken Stuart Second Unit

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    I just received my Fluance AV-SC center channel speaker yesterday.

    I was previously using a phantom center channel, but I recently replaced my DVD player with one that has DVD-Audio, and DVD-Audio players (with the exception IIRC of very expensive ones) don't have any speaker management other than levels, so you can't use a phantom center with DVD-A.

    Thus, I was "forced" [​IMG] to buy a center channel speaker, but I had blown my budget on the DVD player, so I was looking for something that was in "audiophile land", and yet inexpensive. There is always something like that, and Fluance seems to be that right now.

    The Fluance AV-SC was $65 plus $16 shipping on ebay "Buy Now". My second choice was the Wharfedale Diamond but that costs twice as much.

    After setting up the Fluance center, I've been pleased with its sound out of the box. It does equally well with both music ("Fragile" DVD-A) and movies (SW2 AotC DVD). Every speaker sounds boxy next to my Magneplanar front speakers, but these are less so than any speaker I've heard under $1k.

    I'll report back if the sound changes after Alan's famous "10 hour break in period". [​IMG]
     
  5. JustinG

    JustinG Stunt Coordinator

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    "what about those bass drivers near the bottom of the tower? "

    Well, I don't know if you can call them bass drivers since they are passive speakers.

    Ken, keep breaking in those speakers. They do get better over time. I'm trying to get them fully broken in by even watching TV with them. Spongebob has never sounded so good.
     
  6. Alan M

    Alan M Second Unit

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    Geez,didnt know I was famous,lol.
    Glad to hear everyone is happy with their purchase from fluance.
    When I bought my fluance speakers,money was tight(happy to say my business has boomed and this is no longer the case).With some hesitation,I hooked them up,calibrated the system and was blown out of the water by the sound.I do feel that they are worth much more then fluance charges.
    Yep,they sure do change,started noticing the change at about 10 hours and by the time 20 hours had elapsed,there was a major sound difference.a fuller more natural sound.
    Let us know how your es-1s change Justin.Have a sister who needs new speakers and might have to give her my sx's and move up in the fluance line,hehe.
     
  7. Ken Stuart

    Ken Stuart Second Unit

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  8. Rory Buszka

    Rory Buszka Supporting Actor

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    passive radiators, eh? They look a lot like woofers to me. If they are passive radiators, though, then this speaker is a lot like the configuration of the Definitive Mythos One which has two 5.25" woofers and a tweeter in MTM, and four passive radiators.

    I wish Fluance would say more about the designs of their speakers on their web site.
     
  9. JustinG

    JustinG Stunt Coordinator

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    Just checking back in.

    Since I've had a chance to break them in more, I have to say they really have opened up a lot. They are not bright at all and still, the soundstage is amazing. Can't wait to move into the new place in 2 weeks to get them set up properly.
     
  10. George Caronan

    George Caronan Stunt Coordinator

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    Hello all. After reading about the chat regarding the ES-1s [thanks to JustinG], I've entertained thoughts of purchasing a pair then offing the SV-10s. I called up Fluance to inquire about the differences between the two. I was advised that the ES-1s are more for higher level, lower listening tasks than for home theater applications. They did not recommend using an amp with higher wattage capability than it's 160 watt power handling spec. Apparently, there will be distortion ensued. Their current version of the model does not have bi-wiring posts but is now single. Apparently, it wasn't built for bi-amping to begin with. Anywhos, just thought I'd pass this along. Cheers.
     
  11. James Sarno

    James Sarno Stunt Coordinator

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    WOW...Those speakers look amazing...Was thinking about a Paradigm or Axiom set up,but if my Wife sees the ES-1's...
    ...I hope they really sound as good as they look
     
  12. Brett DiMichele

    Brett DiMichele Producer

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    George,

    No they were never built for "Bi-Amping" or "Bi-Wiring" the
    response from Fluance was that the Crossover automaticaly
    routed the power comming in based on how they were wired..

    Me and quite a few others waved the big B.S. Flag on it..

    Looks like they changed the design? (False Advertising maybe?)

    I am not saying anything bad about the actual speakers..
    But if you are going to add dual terminals just to join the
    "Fad" Train then you should at least seperate the regions of
    the crossover and make it functional!
     
  13. George Caronan

    George Caronan Stunt Coordinator

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    Hi Brett. Yes, I was informed by Fluance that the original make of the ES-1 with the dual terminals was not built for bi-amping. It's unfortunate since that is my preferred mode of hook-up for my mains. I agree that it should have been built to accomodate such an option with the dual inputs to begin with. Regarding their product, so far Fluance owners have been happy with their speakers. I own the SV-10s which are bi-ampable by the way. Its performance has been good. The ES-1 looks nice but will not suit my needs at this point. The honest gentleman at Fluance told me it is more for a high-end office/suite/den more than anything built for casual listening of music as such. After telling them what I planned on using them for which was for higher decibel playback of music and movies, he recommended against it.
     
  14. Brett DiMichele

    Brett DiMichele Producer

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    George,

    It was a good move on their part to be straight up with you
    and to also change the design. It could have caused many
    problems if users were under the impression that the ES1's
    were Bi Ampable and then fried thier amps in the process.

    I beleive that Fluance has established a great reputation
    thus far and they did the right thing.
     

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