Help with a Decision: Fluance or Axiom (MONEY IS AN OBJECT OF CONCERN)

Discussion in 'Speakers & Subwoofers' started by DaveAr, May 27, 2003.

  1. DaveAr

    DaveAr Stunt Coordinator

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    This forum has opened me up to a new learning experience, and I have gained some valuable info over the short period of time I have soent here.
    But I would like to inquire once agin as to assistance with speaker info. I recently began putting together (ON PAPER) an AXIOM system. Granted these have come with rave reviews. BUT, at a cost. the system i was piecing together came in around 1200.00. WITHOUT a sub. Then adding a Sub I would come in at 1500-1600. This is a bit steep for my first plunge into HT, but I was relunctantly willing.
    Then as i was reading, AGAIN, some more threads, I came across someone praising a sytem from FLUANCE. I tuned to their website, and lo and behold I could not believe what I was reading or seeing. Now I am in a bit of a quandry. Should I go all out and blow the wad on the Axioms, or, try for the Fluance and get my feet wet. I do not have a large room, 13 x 15. And the HT would be used part of the time since there is my son's room directly above.
    I would look to pair either of these with the HK AVR 325/525, or the Denon's 1803/2803. Depending on prices.
    Lastly i would like a sub, that would not kill the budget, again a referral came to Adire Rava or Velodyne.
    Any input is valuable to me, and I appreciate all.
    Thanks:b
    I also read that Fluance requires BIwiring, is this an issue, or dificult to perform?
     
  2. Dan_Fitz

    Dan_Fitz Extra

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    I am using the Fluance Av-HTB at this moment. This is their $200 5 speaker package. Overall I am impressed with the nice sound that comes out of it. I am not HT guru but I only had about $600 to spend on a receiver and speakers so this is what I got. It is really up to you if you want to "blow your wad", but make sure you can afford to pay that and also if the different in sound will matter to you. I would suggest trying out the Axioms if you can or maybe find someone near by who has the fluance set up. If you live near DE you can come and listen to mine.[​IMG]
     
  3. MatthewK

    MatthewK Stunt Coordinator

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    Since you are in the $1200-$1500 range with sub it may be of great interest for you to check out a thread over at avs. The thread, Listening session in Los Angeles this weekend, compares Axiom, Ascend, Aperion and Onix Rockets. All of them are approximately in the same ballpark price range.

    I think you will find the thread quite enlightening. One thing I have repeatedly heard is Axiom (and I think Fluance as well) can sound bright to some people. Many people really like this sound but many also find the sound can be grating after a while. It is really up to what YOU like in speaker sound.

    Enjoy your pursuit of new speakers!

    Matthew
     
  4. Mark Dickerson

    Mark Dickerson Stunt Coordinator

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    Dave:

    I agree with Matthew that both the Fluance and the Axiom's are pretty bright. If you go with one of those systems, definitly get the Harman/Kardon receiver, which has a warmer, smoother sound that can better tame the sound of the speakers than the Denons.

    However, I would recommend that you look into PSB speakers. They have consistently won high praise from the reviewers, and are very competitively priced with the Axioms, particularly the PSB Image line. For your size room, a pair of Image 2Bs for fronts, 1Bs for your rears, a PSB center channel speaker and subwoofer can all be had for less than $1K, and it sounds very, very good.

    Just a thought . . .
     
  5. Heath_R

    Heath_R Stunt Coordinator

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    I have the Axiom M3's and did not find them bright at all in my office with carpet on the floor and books on the wall, but I did find them bright when I set them up in a room with spanish tile and bare walls. You will need to listen to see if you like the titanium dome tweeter sound. I am very satisfied with mine. They sounded great off of an onkyo reciver and off of my rotel gear.
     
  6. DaveAr

    DaveAr Stunt Coordinator

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    I "hear" what you are saying. But clarify for me the meaning of "bright". Do you mean a tinny sound, sort of like everything is high pitched?
    Heath, according to your description of the other room sounds similar to mine. The room is finished with Pergo flooring, sheetrock walls, a glass patio door, and a 54" opening leading into the kitchen.
    I am not really sure on this bright description.
    Another thrread led me to look at the Tannoy line of speakers. Anyone familiar with them?[​IMG]
     
  7. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    I like the sound of Axiom, but I have to say that they are on the bright side. What some refer to as bright, I might call a bit more detailed. I don't mind this at all. The Axioms give up some bass response for more midrange clarity. I don't find the titanium tweeter to be harsh at all, but the aluminum midrange is fast and tight, making for a more in your face sound. This can be somewhat tamed with good speaker placement, room treatments (well placed rug and some wall hangings), properly matched electronics and cabling (warmer amps like H/K, Marantz, and neutral cables).
     
  8. DaveAr

    DaveAr Stunt Coordinator

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    We do have a throw rug in the center of the floor, although a good portion of the Pergo still exists. There are a few framed pictures on the walls, nothing on a grand scale. I am leaning towards the HK line AVR 325/525. Are you implying Denon is not "warmer". I was considering one of theirs but..... Cables, I would like to use my existing AR cables as they are only 6 months old. Replaced all when i purchased my Sony DVP NS715P DVD player for Christmas.
    On a side note, would anyone agree that I can delete my Denon DCD 970 CD player, and simply use the Sony as an all around playuer?
    No word on the Tannoy or Fluance lines? Mark replied that they Fluance was bright like the Axioms, are they comparable?
    Again as simple or stupid as it sounds I must find equal part quality and aesthically pleasing. :b
     
  9. Mark Dickerson

    Mark Dickerson Stunt Coordinator

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    Dave:

    Just to clarify, in my audio lexicon, "bright" means an emphasis on the high end, a forward sounding speaker as opposed to a more laid back speaker such as B + W. For many people, a brighter speaker is more dynamic sounding. for others, it is fatiguing. It all comes down to what you like. However, "bright" does not mean "tinny" as "tinny" means tinny (thin sounding). Maybe agressive is another word that helps. If you still don't know what I mean, go listen to some B+W 600s and you will hear the opposite of bright. As I use to have the 600s, they now sound like someone threw a wet blanket over them to me. I also tend to like a detailed sound, but I don't like to get too bright, otherwise it really can be fatiguing and when I had this problem, I found I was shutting my system down because I didn't enjoy listening to it. That is why I suggested the H/K as the best choice to mate with the Axioms.

    As for Tannoy, it is a well known English speaker brand, but have limited distribution in this country. My local dealer has them, but rarely recommends them (however, that does not mean they aren't a good product--he may not have enough profit margin or he may have another speaker line at the same price point that he personally prefers, who knows!). Many reviews of Tannoy are included in the Expert Reviews section of the Ecoustics web site and I would recommend that you start there. The english audio magazines love to do shootouts between brands, so you can usually pick up some useful info in their reviews.

    At this point, I see no reason to replace your cables. I am sure thay are fine--AR (a division of Recoton, but likely to be sold soon to get Recoton out of debt) has been trying to make themselves into a value brand for cables--i.e., just as good as Monster Cable, but cheaper. Overall, I think it is a good, reasonably priced product (I use their product in my study). Use them for awhile and if you think you aren't getting good detail out of your system, then and only then investigate changing your cables.

    Dave, I hope I haven't confused you further! [​IMG]

    Mark
     
  10. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    When I say use cabling to tame, I don't mean you need to do it right away. This type of tweak is very subtle and is later on down the line in terms of making your system exactly how you want it. Stick with the ARs for now, and work on getting speakers and receiver that match well.

    The M3s sounded very clear and clean with my Marantz receiver. I would be very happy to have M22s in my system.

    I find Denon receivers in this price range to be a bit "flat" to my ear with music.

    My recommendation is pick up the H/K, then get a pair of M22s and try them out for a few weeks to see how they sound.

    The 715 is a good enough CDP that you could probably live without the Denon, but I would say to compare the two once you have your speakers broken in and make the determination then.

    I will make your headache even bigger...[​IMG] Bang for the buck, you might also want to consider JBL S series from J&R.com
     
  11. Alan M

    Alan M Second Unit

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    As an owner of the fluance sx_htb sytem,I highly recommend them.This is their more expensive(lol) htb sytem.
    For your 1st plunge into home theater,its an excellent start.While not top of the line,they have a very pleasing sound that fills my 18x12 room and wont give me that upgraditis feeling.
    Highs and mids are clear,with a strong bottom end,although for ht ,you will need a sub.
    Either way you go,good luck and happy shopping.
     
  12. DaveAr

    DaveAr Stunt Coordinator

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    Alan, how long have you owned them? What rec are you using with them?
    What is all this about bi-wiring the speakers? Have you done this to yours? From the looks of it, it appears that you would run 4 wires per speaker? 2 wires out of each L/R terminal from the receiver to 2 wires on each terminal of the speaker? That is alot of wires to run, am I correct?
     
  13. Alan M

    Alan M Second Unit

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    Dave,I've owned my sx setup for about 7 months now and couldnt be happier with them.
    As to my power,I'm running a yamaha 5560 that is rated at 75 watts per channel and this seems to be more then enough power for the sx system.
    The mains are the only speakers that are biwirable.Nope havent tried it yet,and considering how good the sound is,I havent felt the need to try it yet.That doesnt mean I wont try it in the future,just havent had the urge yet.
    Regarding the sound,I have several friends who own much more expensive setups.After listening to mine,the comment I get most often is, how clean and clear the sound this set produces.
    As stated in 1 of the posts above,they are a little(stress the word little) bright.Its not annoying or irritating to the ears,and whether this is the speakers alone or a combo of my yammi and speakers,I'm not sure.
    I do highly recommend the sx setup,and btw,they look much more expensive then they are as a bonus.
    If your in the southern cal area and wish to hear them,drop me a PM and we'll set something up.I'm very proud of my HT and love showing it off.
     
  14. JustinG

    JustinG Stunt Coordinator

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    I should receive my Fluance ES-1's tomorrow. I saved $100 on an ebay auction from one of their authorized dealers.

    On biwiring: You can use the typical 1 pair wires to hook them up. They come with a bridging plate that will close the connections. So that's a non issue for you. I will most likely hook mine up the traditional way and DIY some biwires later. Or you can buy the Monster biwires for around $75 a cable.

    I will report back with results of the speakers hopefully this weekend. Later, I will purchase the center channel for timbre matching and some bipoles for surround.

    Good to hear that the HK525 will warm them up a bit. I actually prefer a bright speaker, but not so much so that high pitched sounds get ear piercing. I've been looking at the Onkyo SR800 and the AVR525 and now leaning the 525 way.
     
  15. DaveAr

    DaveAr Stunt Coordinator

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    Alan, thanks for the offer, but unfortunately I am in NYC.
    Justin, I, as others look forward to your posted results.
    Good Luck with them, I hope they work out. I will keep my eyes open.
    I did contact Fluance regarding their finishes. They responded tht they will offer the surrounds, and centers in the natural finish w/in 6 mos. I like the bipolars, but I cannot have black in my room. The components I have that are black are behind a glass door in an entertainment center.
    That is why I am having a tough time with my selections. I not only need performance, but looks are EXTREMELY important. They need to be aesthetically pleasing to both the eyes and ears. Light wood floors, off white walls, burgandy reclining sofa, pearl white entertainment center. white bookshelfs. so as you can tell black simply wont cut it. Especially in the center channel, a big black box sitting in the middle of a white center, I do not need any more headaches at home (catch my drift). I will definitely watch all the threads.[​IMG]
     
  16. JustinG

    JustinG Stunt Coordinator

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    DaveAR,

    Yeah I got the same response from them. I may have to do something like paint the outside of the speakers to match wall colors to come under the WAF radar. [​IMG] I have a lot of wood furniture and light colored walls. Black would stand out too much.

    I just hope the ES1s sound good. I'm taking a big chance on them. I do have a friend that got the AV5s and center and love them.
     
  17. Brian Bunge

    Brian Bunge Producer

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    John,

    Denon receivers sound flat to you, too? I thought I was the only one! [​IMG] I've heard the M22's as well and found them to be a bit too aggressive for my tastes (pretty sure it was with a Denon receiver too). I'd definitely have to pair them with a H/K or Sherwood Newcastle receiver if I were to own a pair. But I think I'll stick with my current setup for a while!
     

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