Monitor Audio Silvers v. Tannoy Sensys DCs

Discussion in 'Speakers & Subwoofers' started by Bob*S, Aug 7, 2004.

  1. Bob*S

    Bob*S Stunt Coordinator

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    I've listened extensively to the MA Silver 6s with Silver Center and Silver 1s for rears. I really like the sound of the MAs but I've been haunted by a brief previous encounter with the Tannoys.

    The Tannoys would be the Sensys DC2s with the Sensys DCC and either the DC1s for or Sensys Rs for surround duty? Has anyone here had the opportunity to compare these speakers? What do you consider each speaker's strengths and weaknesses.

    I was able to listen briefly to the DC2s again yesterday but I didn't have my disks with me. And they didn't have the Center channel or other speakers from the line. How does the center perform. Do they have good dispersion (the room I was in was far from optimal).

    Would a Pioneer Elite 55TXi (actually, a 56TXi) be a good match for them?

    Any, and all, input is greatly appreciated.

    Bob
     
  2. Bob*S

    Bob*S Stunt Coordinator

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    (Sorry this is so long.)

    I spent the better part of two hours yesterday listening to the Tannoy Sensys DC2s. I thought I'd post my impressions since there seems to be so little info on these speakers available online.

    The Tannoys most definitely lack the bass extension of the Monitor Audio S6s. This was exacerbated by the need to pull the speakers at least 24 inches off the wall. One review I read mentioned that all kick drums sounded the same on these speakers. I didn't find that to be the case at all. The bowed upright bass on "Skip, Hop, and Wobble" resolved beautifully. These speakers have a nice quality of well-differentiated bass down to their lower limit but certainly lack the oomph of the MAs. This is not an issue for me since I will be augmenting the bass with a sub for home theater.

    The Tannoys have better treble extension and upper-mid detail without sounding shrill ar edgy. Who knows if it is the super-tweeter or something else but violins, piano, flute or any instrument with harmonics reaching upward to the limits of human hearing sounded great. They also provide a great sense of attack on plucked strings, piano, snare, cymbals and anything percussive. To be honest, I can't say which speaker I liked better.

    The mid-range is very detailed on the Tannoys without sounding "dry". In fact, the Tannoys are perhaps a tad warmer than the MAs; I suspect that this is the result of their fiber woofers and mids compared to the metal cones used in the MAs. These speakers are the most revealing I've listened to in their price range. I use a track by Prodigy that has a hard-driving bass line with so much going on that it is almost a sonic assault on one's ears. This track has routinely tripped up many speakers as the layers of sound turn it to a muddled mess. The MAs allowed me to hear the "vocal" in this track, however, the Tannoys allowed me to hear the words.

    Both male and female vocals are very good on both speakers. I preferred the presentation on the Tannoys which seemed just a tad warmer. I've often heard some sibilance on Alanis Morrisette's live recording of "Forgiven" but the Tannoys never exhibited this quality. Sinatra's "Live from Paris" was very open and detailed with the very direct presentation of a man with a mic and lean accompaniment.

    Both speakers have very good imaging but the Tannoy's soundstage is wide, deep, tall and rock solid. This is almost certainly the result of the concentric driver as I observed this same attribute with KEFs. I did not have any symphonic music with me but I am certain that the Tannoys would do a great job laying out the orchestra before me.

    You'd think that I'd be sold on the Tannoys but I am not. I feel I need to spend a bit more time with them as well as run across the street immediately after to hear the MAs. I am also going to listen to the MA S8s since the cost to me would be about the same as the DC2s and I think that the extra driver may afford some of the same attributes I enjoyed in the DC2s.

    I also need to hear the DCC center channel since this will be used for both home theater as well as multi-channel music. If anyone has heard this speaker I'd appreciate your impressions.

    I am also a bit concerned that the dip in impedance to 2.96 @ 99Hz (according to a review in the Feb '04 Sound and Vision might be problematic for the Pioneer receiver I was planning on using. I will contact Tannoy to see if I can get a plot of the impedance curve.

    As an aside, the Tannoys will win no beauty contest. They seem well-made but their nice vinyl-wrap is no competition for the MAs beautiful wood veneer. I am also not too fond of the pod atop the speaker or the rather bloated look of the grill both of which I find ungainly. The grills are easily dealt with and the speaker fronts are nice enough but I'd just need to remind myself to ignore the pod and enjoy the music if I go with the Tannoys.

    Anyone else have any thoughts on the Tannoys?

    Bob
     

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