Input needed for basic comparison...B&W, Paradigm, JM Labs

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by MWestyn, Jan 24, 2003.

  1. MWestyn

    MWestyn Stunt Coordinator

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    Yes, I know how good a speaker sounds is mostly subjective, however, I am looking for some basic input as to major differences to be expected (i.e. are some regarded to be better than the other) between the following:

    Paradigm Studio series (100's for mains)
    Paradigm Monitor series (11's for mains)
    B&W 600 series (604's for mains)
    JM Labs Chorus or Cobalt series (725 or 826 for mains)
    Rocket (750's for mains)

    I realize there are some jumps in price on some of these...my friend is dealer for Paradigm, and I'm not too familiar with the JM Labs pricing (heard good things about them though).

    Right now I have a Marantz 7300 and will probably add an amp...possible upgrade to 8300 when/if it comes out.

    Any input is appreciated. Thanks.
     
  2. John Spicer

    John Spicer Agent

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    I can only comment on the B&W's. My whole setup (with exception of the sub which is SVS) is based on the B&W 600s3 series using the 603's as the mains.

    In short, WOW. I personally have found the imaging for me to be the best with the B&W's. Ive been amazed at the intrument/vocal placement that the B&W's facilitate. Listening to music (in 2ch sterio of course) I can see that the triangle was placed in the back of the band off to the right side of the drum kit. Its truly amazing. I also was blown away listening/watching the Eagles Hell Freezes Over DVD that was done up in DTS. Just purely emotional.

    If you do decide to go with B&W you wont be sorry. The other neat thing that happened for me was that they sound sooo much better at home than they did when auditioning.

    -- John
     
  3. Andre Perusse

    Andre Perusse Auditioning

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    I auditioned the JMLab Cobalt 826 against several speakers, including the B&W 604, Energy Connoisseur C-9, Paradigm Studio 100, and Klipsch RF-3II.

    Out of all these speakers, I liked the JMLab best. To my ears, I found the Engery's to have a muffled mid-range (resulting in difficult-to-understand dialog), same with the B&W's (and a little less dynamic, too). The Paradigm's were solid performers, but the JMLab allowed you to hear things the other speakers couldn't.

    The Klipsch were good, too, but lacked the finess and refined sound of the JMLab. In the end, I bought the Klipsch because I couldn't afford the JMLab (and I already had Klipsch surrounds).

    I was primarily auditioning speakers for home theater, so I didn't spend much time evaluating each speaker's musicality (which may be more important to you).

    My $0.02 worth.


    Cheers,
    Andre
     
  4. jeff_coil

    jeff_coil Stunt Coordinator

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    John
    Just curious what rcvr are you using? I used to have the 600 series but have recently upgraded to the CDM's.
    Jeff
     
  5. John Spicer

    John Spicer Agent

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    Jeff,

    Congratulations. I really wanted CDM series but couldnt afford the whole setup so I went to the 600s3, but have been way way happy. I orginally looked to the B&W's for what I think is a crisp response on the high end. But like I said the imaging is way way developed.

    As far as the reciever Im powering the setup with a HK 320. Ive had the setup for about 2 months now and now that the speakers are breaking in it just keeps getting better. Did you trade in the 600's because they were defficient in something ? I detect that you seem a bit suprised the way I described them.

    -- John
     
  6. Jeff.bart

    Jeff.bart Stunt Coordinator

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    I've tested the JMLabs, B&Ws and Paradigms. All three speaker lines provide excellent sound and value, but I also found the JMLabs to be the best among the three. Ultimately, I chose Dahlquist QX10s over JMLabs Chorus 715 or 725s because I got a better deal, but it was a close call. I give the Dahlquists in edge in total sound and a big edge in bass extension.

    As for JM, I'd describe the sound as clear, neutral and dynamic. They go best with a warmer receiver such as Nad or Marantz, though the HK sounded fine with JMLabs too. I would not match JMLabs up with, say, Yamaha, Sony or even Pioneer, though you may find those brands more to your own liking.
     
  7. Leon O

    Leon O Stunt Coordinator

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    A couple weeks ago I spent 2 hrs A/B'ing 604's and Studio 100's

    Highs:
    - Paradigm's a little brighter than I would have preferred
    - Paradigm's captured more details
    - Paradigm's had more "snap"... seemed livelier
    - 604's were smooth

    Mids:
    - I liked both

    Bass:
    - Paradigms went lower
    - 604's has a nice full sound
    - 100's seemed tighter, more accurate

    Dynamics:
    - Paradigms were more efficient
    - Seemed to have a bit more punch

    Imagine / Soundstage:
    - I though the 100's gave a better blend when sounds panned back & forth
    - Paradigms had a slightly larger sweet spot
    - 100's seemed slightly more spacious / airy

    I preferred the sound of the Paradigms, even though they were a bit bright (I'm 80% HT). They are now my benchmark when comparing other lines.

    I also listened to Mirage OMC7 and a pair of slightly more expensive Martin Logans. Mirage has a great soundstage, but was too grainy for my tastes. The Midbass on the Martin Logans was not acceptable to me (great sound otherwise).

    JM Labs are next for me to compare. Good Luck [​IMG]
     
  8. MWestyn

    MWestyn Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks for all the input so far...it's greatly appreciated.

    I do like a warmer or more neutral sound as opposed to somthing bright or harsh (i.e. Klipsch)

    I'm definately going to have to audition the JM Labs, but Paradigms may be the way for me to go seeing as I can get dealer's prices.

    One other question...I've heard that the Studio 100's crave power...will I have to add an amp to my setup (Marantz 7300 rated at 110 wpc)?

    Thanks again.
     
  9. Scott_N

    Scott_N Second Unit

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    To get the most out of 100's I would add a two channel amp. Mine are driven by a Aragon 8008ST. Others like warmer amps like parasound or B&K with the 100's.
     
  10. Khoa Tran

    Khoa Tran Supporting Actor

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    JM Lab, and i think you should try some PSBs too, they are from the same maker of Paradigm but they are a different sound, warmer and they seem to roll off on the highs a bit more then paradigm, they are considered higher in the chain then paradigm.
     

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