Monitor Gold 20 vs 60's - Any thoughts?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by steve paul, Dec 21, 2001.

  1. steve paul

    steve paul Stunt Coordinator

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    Just upgraded my system from def tech to Monitor Audio Gold 20's, 10's and center. I can get the 60's for about another $700 for the pair. Is there a big improvement from the 20's to the 60's? I cant imagine them being any better as the 20's are incredible. They are not even burned in yet and they sound unreal with music and movies. The 10's in the rear are also incredible. Just watched Moulin Rouge and it was phenominal! Just dont know if I should return the 20's and get the 60s..not sure if there would be a $700 difference. ANyone try both or have the 60's?
     
  2. Doug_B

    Doug_B Screenwriter

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    Steve,

    I have auditioned both and agree that these are excellent sounding speakers. I've auditioned the 20s quite a bit more, but I have A/B'd the 20s and 60s once. The 60s sound practically the same as the 20s except for added oomph down low, which makes sense due to the extra driver. Mids and highs are the same. I would potentially recommend an upgrade to the 60s only if 1) you don't use a sub with HT (shame on you) or 2) 2 channel music is important to you and you use analog bypass, thus avoiding bass management, and the bass you need reproduced for music requires the extra driver. In a nutshell, if you're not predominantly a 2 channel music nut, I wouldn't bother, but YMMV.

    BTW, a $700 premium for the 60s is not bad, given the retail diff is $1K.

    What electronics are you using to drive the 20s and 10s? I've noticed that amps even as high as 100W rated / channel were insufficient to bring out all the 20s had to offer. I have not listened to 10s.

    Doug
     
  3. steve paul

    steve paul Stunt Coordinator

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    Im using a Denon 5800 and it sounds wonderful. Thats waht I thought about the 60's. I dont need any more bass from the 20's as they produce plenty even without my sub. I used to own a pair of Paradign Studio 100's and the bass on the Ref 20's is better. The whole speaker is in my opinion. My d ealer gave me a deal on a package. he took $800 off retail for the fronts, rears and center. The 10's are also incredible, but the center sounds a little thin. I have had them playing since I got them to break them in as I wastold they need a good 100 hours. Anyway, Ill stick with the 20's, they are a great set of speakers.
     
  4. Scott-C

    Scott-C Supporting Actor

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    Steve,

    This doesn't answer your original question, but I would really enjoy hearing more of your impressions of the Monitor speakers as compared to your former DefTech setup. I have DefTech BP10s, C1, and BP2x and have been eyeing the Monitor Audio speakers. I haven't heard them yet, but I'm very interested in hearing what you think, especially comparing them to DefTech for primarily HT use. In what ways do you find them better than DefTech in a home theater application?

    Thanks!
     
  5. steve paul

    steve paul Stunt Coordinator

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    OK..I HAD A pair of Def Tech 2000tl's for mains, a pair of BP30's for the rear and the CLR 2500 for center with an HGS-18 sub. They were Ok for music and great for DVD's. At times, it would seem that the music or DVD soundtrack was a bit muddy sounding though. My wife thought the def techs were way to big for our room as well. I then looked at some monitor audio speakers and liked them a lot. I sold my def Tech speakers on EBay within 2 days and bought the Monitor Audio setuop including the 20's for mains, 10's for rears and GR center. retail on all of this would be $5500 but I got it all for $4700. The salesman told me they would sound harsh out of the box and needed at least 50 hours break in. Well, I took the 20's out of the box, and found a tool box. Inside were the gold spikes, screwdriver among other things. very cool. Once set up I was blown away by the quality of sound. I was so thrilled I sat there in themiddle of my room, with the lights out and listened to music for 2 hours. All I can say is that these are amazing and I have owned the best from Def Tech, Paradigm Studio 100's, Klipsch and others including Polk Audio, Infinity, ect.

    Anyway, the midrange is so sweet and the imaging is crazy. PLUS this was out of the box sound. They are still being broken in as I write this. I hooked up the GR 10's up front for the hell of it and WOW, this is the best bookshelf I have ever heard. 5 of these puppies would be an awesome HT with a good sub, and could be had for approx $3100-$3200 (still high but worth it)

    Anyway, to sum it all up, the Monitor Audios were not much more than what I paid for the def Tech 2000's and they are MUCH MUCH better for music, no comparison at all. For HT they are more dynamic and alive than the def techs were. I think whenever I decide to upgrade speakers again (could be years) it will be with monitor audio. No more trying out brands and being unhappy with my decision. I love the design, smaller size and sweet sound. PLUS they fill my room easily. I run them with a Denon 5800 and watched Moulin Rouge at reference level. No strain, no distortion. Just detailed, dynamic, clean sound. If you look at audio review you will see reviews for all the GR series, and all are perfect 5's. I also listened to B&W's and liked the Monitors better. The next speaker that Ive heard that I like better were the $10,000 Revels. Heard som Martin Logans and they were NOT for me.

    the monitor gold reference series is the one to beat. Well worth the $$

    Steve
     
  6. steve paul

    steve paul Stunt Coordinator

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    By the way, Im getting cleaner, tighter, and MORE bass than I was with the Def Techs. With the Def Techs my bass was not right. Too muddy and boomy. These things put out a GREAT amount of clean bass. With music I now turn off my sub.
     
  7. Russell _T

    Russell _T Supporting Actor

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    My Def Tech dealer just started carrying the Monitor Audio line. Are they generally carried by the same dealer? I have no interest in the Def Tech's, but I thought I would check out the Monitor Audios since the dealer is only about a mile away. They are supposed to have a very nice sound.

    Russ
     
  8. Bhagi Katbamna

    Bhagi Katbamna Supporting Actor

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    To answer your original question, I probably would go ahead and get the 60. Not necessarily for lower end oomph but for power handling capacity and ability to play louder without distorting.
     
  9. steve paul

    steve paul Stunt Coordinator

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    I think I will do that. Then I can stop worrying about upgrading, and be 100% happy!
     
  10. Scott-C

    Scott-C Supporting Actor

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    Steve,

    Thanks for the comments. How about imaging with the Monitor Audios...holosonically, are they wide AND very deep? I'm most interested now...

    Also, regarding their size, how much smaller than the DefTech speakers are they (the mains)?

    Lastly, can you tell me more about the quality of the Monitor Audio center channel and the surrounds? Such as...is the center as good as the rest of the system, are the surrounds direct radiating, etc. I heard there is a GFX (or something like that) surround speaker that is a di-pole or something (I don't know a lot about it). Is this what you have?

    Thanks!
     
  11. Doug_B

    Doug_B Screenwriter

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    Steve,

     
  12. steve paul

    steve paul Stunt Coordinator

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    hey guys...

    I had my speakers running for the past five days straight to break them in fully. Now, the center channel sounds superb. MUCH better than my def tech 2500 and a bit better than my Paradigm Studio CC sounded. It just needed to be broken in. The 20's imaging is excellent - wide and very deep. I sit in my sweet spot, turn out the lights and any CD I throw in sounds great. SOme better than others but that is the fault of the recording. These speakers are very clean and accurate. Listening to Jewel I heard MANY things that the def Techs could not reproduce. Sounded like she was in my room, playing right there. I love these speakers and MAY upgrade to the 60's...but these sound so good, Im afraid the 60's might not be as good! These 20's sounded MUCH better in my home than in the showroom, and I ran them with the denon 5800 at the store and its what I use at home as well. The 10's sound superb as well. These speakers are incredible for what I paid ($1300 each)- They blow away Def Tech easily. They excel in music and Home Theater. For the 1st time since I got in to HT and higher end equip I am enjoying my CD collection all over again. Something I did not do with other speakers, even the Paradigms (which were VERY hard to drive) - My 5800 runs these perfectly, and can go to ref level during films with no problem. No distortion, they stay clean. I can highly recommend these speakers.

    I also tried them with a B&K 307 and music sounded a little richer but Ill stick with my denon. The pure direct mode is sweeeeeet!

    Steve
     
  13. Doug_B

    Doug_B Screenwriter

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    Steve,

    Thanks for the update. It's good to hear that the center has broken in and thus improved, and that the rest of your system is working out.

    Although I purchased different speakers that were delivered to me last week (Soundline Audio ribbons, Internet company), I'm not completely sold on them yet, even though they may still be in break-in mode (and my amp is just a few days old, too). As a result, I just called my B&M dealer about bringing home the GR 20s for a couple of days of auditioning, which will occur next week. Of course, I have heard the 20s at his shop as well as at another dealer. Thus, if they work for me in my room, and the Soundlines don't improve in the "trouble areas" by next week, they are going back to California.

    By the way, one other difference between the GR 20s and 60s is size. The extra few inches of the 60s may make a difference to some folks, possibly even me. A have an L-shaped couch, and its front arm might be a hindrance to the 20s, depending on positioning.

    Unfortunately, my dealer doesn't have the GR surrounds in yet. However, given my current seating arrangement, I will not be able to mount the left dipole/bipole directly to my left side. As such, I may be better off getting direct speakers mounted on stands (such as the GR 10s); I have more room to my right to place speaker stands than I originally anticipated (and to my left is not an issue). I would have them set up somewhat behind me and maybe facing each other so that surround effects are not too direct.

    How do you have your GR 10s set up? Do you listen to multichannel music at all?

    BTW, I agree with you on the comparison with the Def Techs (bipolar towers with sub). They don't sound bad at all with music, but when you start listening to speakers like the GRs, there's really no comparison music-wise, IMO. For that matter, I felt that the Paradigm studio series bested the Def Techs as well for music.

    Thanks.

    Doug
     
  14. Mal P

    Mal P Stunt Coordinator

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    Hmmm, it looks like the next set of speakers I buy will be 5 x GR10s. Except I'm tempted to put in cheap surround speakers instead... it seems almost a waste to use the GR10s as surrounds.

    Cheers,

    Mal
     
  15. Scott-C

    Scott-C Supporting Actor

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    Geez, I really want to demo the Monitor Audios, but I know what will happen if I do...upgrade time! Must hold off a little longer, must hold off a little longer...

    Steve, did you consider the dipole/bipole surrounds when you thought about your surrounds? Did you demo this speaker?
     
  16. steve paul

    steve paul Stunt Coordinator

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    I decided on the 10's becuase I listen to 5 channel music quite a bit. I did not even hear the surrounds, PLUS they did not have the GR surrounds in yet. The 10's sound great in the rear and with 5 ch music.
     
  17. steve paul

    steve paul Stunt Coordinator

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    Well, today I am upgrading from the 20's to the 60's - I went to my delaer and A/B'd the 20's and 60's for about an hour with my fav CD's and movies. The 60's had a slightly BIGGER sound, and a little sweeter. Once I get the 60's, thats it for a looooong time. I LOVE these speakers!
     
  18. Scott-C

    Scott-C Supporting Actor

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    Congrats Steve! Great way to start off the new year. Be sure to post your thoughts on the 60s once you've set them up in your HT!
     
  19. steve paul

    steve paul Stunt Coordinator

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    Had the 60's set up for 3 days, playing 24/7 to help break them in and I sat down and listened a few minutes ago to a Jewel CD, then a Green Day CD and then a DVD Audio disc of Hotel california by the Eagles. MUCH bigger soundstage then the 60's, same awesome imaging but the sound is fuller, NOT as crystal clear as the 20's were, but they have more oomph andpower. They play louder without strain and just have a bigger sound. Im glad I upgraded. They sound a bit different than the 20's but they sound wonderful. Well worth the $1700 each I paid. They list for $2k each, but my dealer took off $600 total. Im running with the Denon 5800 and will eventually add an external amp. Anyone know if the sunfire sinema grand signature would mate well with the monitors?
     
  20. Scott-C

    Scott-C Supporting Actor

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    Interesting (but I guess not surprising) that you found the 60s to be not as clear as the 20s. That makes the choice a tough one! I'd have an external sub with my system which might take care of the sound down low...maybe that would push me towards the 20s. Who knows - this is why you do listening demos!

    Glad you like them!
     

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