New Linn Speakers for me, and what can i say! :D

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by Kaj, Sep 4, 2004.

  1. Kaj

    Kaj Stunt Coordinator

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    Hi,

    I just upgraded my fronts and surround speakers to the LINN Ninka and Katan speakers three days ago.

    I just now finished getting it all sounding right and pleasing to me with the Z9 as the amp.

    What can i say, . . . brilliant!!!!

    Maybe for some they aren't good speakers, but for me (and especially at the Great price I got on them). For me, over the previous Monitor Audio Silver 5i fronts the Ninka's blow them, and me, away.

    The clarity, the crispness, the detail! I hooked both pairs of speakers up to A and B outputs on the Z9 so I could switch between the two and compare.
    Put in a few CD’s and DTS CD’s composed of Eric Clapton, Madonna, Eagles, Cat Stevens, Queen, and one CD I came across as a great sampler is the Classic Disney, Vol. 1, the first 7 tracks, also the Antz movie soundtrack, a wide range of great material and musical styles on the one CD.
    Anyway.
    The Monitor Audio's sounded like they had a pillow over them and like they were hooked up to a cheap $10 radio! Or like they were playing an MP3 encoded at 24Kbps. Compared to the Linn, they were muddy and muffled and dull and the sound stage, which I once thought was good, was hopeless
    I couldn't believe that I used to listen to them and show others and think they were great! [​IMG]

    The thing that really blew me out of the water though, was the sound stage presented by the LINN. The contrast between the two was night and day.
    I have had numerous people to come and listen, and they would swear that I had the centre speaker playing as well, or that I had a form of Pro-Logic processing on, the sound field covers the whole front of the room and slightly wraps around you with a clear, crisp vocal/voice, smack in the middle of the room, the speakers nearly disappear compared to the Monitor Audio.

    The rear speaker, well, the LINN Katan's replaced some Bose speakers, so I shall let that speak for itself!!!! I feel ashamed to have been listening to music with the bose after hearing the Katan’s. [​IMG]

    Anyway, just thought I would share it with you. I am very happy with the new speakers.

    For me this was a larger upgrade, I can only imagine what some of your systems sound like with speaker that run circles around the LINN. But as they say, ignorance is bliss [​IMG]. Though I must say, I auditioned a few speakers over double the price of the Linn, and I was quite surprised, the Linn held up very well, in some cases better!, but that is personal preference I suppose.

    The only disappointing thing is that Linn, as a extra cost/purchase, ask AUS$600 for the granite base for the Ninka's. I'll see if I can make my own for that amount, to help the bass a bit.

    Anyways, i'm very happy

    cheers,
    I'm off to listen to some music.

    KJ
     
  2. Burke Strickland

    Burke Strickland Second Unit

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    Congratulations. Quality speakers do make a big difference in our enjoyment of both music and movies, and Linn makes some great speakers. I don't own Linns myself, but I was very favorably impressed when I auditioned the models you selected for your system. Glad you are enjoying yours.
     
  3. Simon Brooke

    Simon Brooke Stunt Coordinator

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    hi kaj

    great speakers,

    i work for the distributors in south africa, i sat yesterday for about an hours with the ninka's having a good listen, was using the new linn unidisk and 5125 power amp, was amazed at the soundstage, it does sound like i was using the center speaker, had to make sure i had the right processing on, because i couldn't believe it.
     
  4. Travis R.

    Travis R. Agent

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    Kaj Congratulations on the LINN's. I've had a pair of black monolithic beautiful Ninka's for over a year with my crappy Pioneer VSX D-850s receiver (which will be upgraded soon) and I absolutely love them. As you point out it does present like there is a centre speaker at times. Their clarity and precision I find is outstanding whether music or movies. They seem to get slagged a bit on there low frequency response but I find that unsupportable.

    All I can say is sit down in your favorite chair, turn down the lights, a glass of your favorite wine put in your favorite cd and enjoy. Just curious are you Activ wired or Passive. I am Passive Bi-wired and just curious if it's worth to go up to ACTIV.

    Congrats again you won't regret the investment.

    Travis
     
  5. Tom D

    Tom D Stunt Coordinator

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    Hi, Kaj. I recently upgraded to the Ninka's and Trikan centre. The soundstage they produce is really nice, I love the soft dome tweeter, no fatigue factor at all, at any volume. Very smooth sounding speakers.

    Hey Travis, looks like we're both in Ottawa. I'm out in kanata. Where abouts are you? Maybe we can hook up this long weekend.

    Regards,

    Tom
     
  6. Andrew*L

    Andrew*L Agent

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    I own a pair of Linn Nexus speakers (with the Kustone stands) that I bartered for some years back. They are, without a doubt, the easiest speakers to listen to that I have owned so far. I have the similiar comments concerning the excellent soundstaging and the voicing (very life like!). They're so non-fatiguing, that I'm able to listen for extended periods of time, and at volumes that cause the wife to give me dirty looks.[​IMG] To put this into context, my listening experience includes Phase Technologies, B&W, Pinnacle, Boston Acoustics Reference, Paradigm, Energy, Monitor Audio, and Klipsch. Here is a place where I've found useful information about Linn stuff:

    Linn Discussion Group

    If the link doesn't work, try http://lists.topica.com. Do a search for Linn.

    Travis,

    I had the opportunity to hear the Ninkas passive and active, from a helpful dealer here in Northern Caliifornia (I highly recommend this guy, if anyone is interested pm me). I found the differences so startling, that I am planning to upgrade to an active system, as time and money permits. Even more transparency and clarity, better dynamics, clearer bass, are just some of the things I noticed. Find a dealer that will setup this demo for you, I left the demonstration like a bumbling school boy.

    Cheers[​IMG]
     
  7. Kaj

    Kaj Stunt Coordinator

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    Yeah,
    I've heard good things about going active with Linn speakers, but they reccomened that you use other Linn gear as they are degined to work seamlessly together.
    The only drawback is the cost.
    So i am currently B-wiring the linn Ninkas, and it sounds good to me [​IMG].

    i've attached a paper on the Linn Active system (i'm sure it applies generally to all active speakers) you may find interesting over at the AVS forum HERE.


    cheers

    KJ
    (i'm glad others like Linn aswell, down here in Aussie land, there seems to only be a minority, you don't hear much about them)
     
  8. Travis R.

    Travis R. Agent

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    Andrew thanks for the heads up on the Activ system sound. My dealer suggested I don't listen to an Activ system unless I am seriously having upgraditis. I'm not sure if that is just a marketing technique to make me think they sound so much more amazing Activ but it seems from what I have read it does make a huge difference.

    Question: I just discovered today that I have a slight dent in my lower woofer mesh covering. Is there any way of pulling it back out so that it is normal. I say slight only because I noticed it only when the light coming in my condo hit it just at the right angle to cast a dark spot on the covering. It's not a huge deal but if I had a fire in my condo it would go in this order of safety first. 1. Wife 2.Cats 3.NINKA's..... ok maybe Ninka's might beat out the cats.

    Tom D. nice to hear someone else in Ottawa has a pair of LINN's in this Forum. It may be cool to hook up and do some shop talk someday.

    Cheers.

    Travis
     
  9. Tom D

    Tom D Stunt Coordinator

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    Hi Travis, just e-mail me when you want to hook up.

    Tom
     
  10. henning hoffmann

    henning hoffmann Stunt Coordinator

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    I have Linn 5140 and 5120 speakers I bought used and am quite happy with. But I think they need to be powered better than my HK 500 receiver to really shine!

    henning

    PS I'm in Ottawa too!
     
  11. Tom D

    Tom D Stunt Coordinator

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    Hi Henning, this sounds like we could set up an HTF meet of our own here in Ottawa...

    Regards, Tom
     
  12. Keir H

    Keir H Second Unit

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    Hello all good to hear there are some Linn fans/owners on the board, since they are rare talked about line. I have currently some Keilidhs (Ninka replaced this model) fronts and a 5120 center. Now with my speakers I have the older ceramic tweeter but it still sounds great although i have heard the Katan/Ninka setup here locally at a dealer. I like the new tweeter a bit better though..seems more open and smooth. My 5120 I think is activ ready since it has its aktiv bass inputs open and ready to receive cable whereas my fronts mains are not. I too have heard that going aktiv is quite an improvement on an already great sounding speaker. But boy does it cost ya and the complexity might not be worth while to some initially. I plan to go aktiv eventually but not sure if I want to go with an upgrade to 5140's first to match my center more.

    Congrats to you again Kaj. What other speakers were you choosing from at the time if any? And to go from Bose to Katans was eye opening i am quite sure!?
     
  13. Keir H

    Keir H Second Unit

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    Henning, I would look into at least a 3 channel outboard amp to give your speakers some juice that you 5140's will surely be please to have. You will likely hear a big difference with anything rated 150w plus into 4 ohms or more, it did for me. I am driving my Keilidhs with a Parasound 2 channel amp which gives them over 300w per speaker in the load the require. I am not sure the rating you HK is at 4 ohms though. Bring one home to test if possible, doubt you'd bring that amp back! [​IMG]
     
  14. Kaj

    Kaj Stunt Coordinator

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    To tell the truth, i didn't really audition the speakers much or any other for comparison when i bought the Linn, i saw the price, and went immedietly and bought them, and i'm glad i did, because not soon after i was told that someone else was keen to get them and was very dissapointed to hear they were sold [​IMG] (plus they weren't set up, they were on the floor in clearance, brand new, and i actually didn't get the katan from the floorstock, they got me new ones sent for $100 more to match the colour of the Ninka's, so i was happy, the ninkas were oak, the Katans they had were black).
    A few months before though, i was doing a good listening sample of the the Linn Ninka's and really liked them, back then i also heard a bit from Energy and Mirage, though i didn't like them much, i prefer the closed cabinet, traditional design and sound, none of the bassy, omni directinal, fancy stuff. So i knew i liked the Linn, and i knew how they sounded, i didn't just buy them because they looked cool [​IMG], just i couldn't afford them at the original cost. Thats why i jumped when i saw them on sale.
    And with the Katan, i got them because again, good deal, and they match the Ninka's well, in looks and sound, they use the same design, and have near identical mids/highs (same tweeter i think), and i knew anything had to be better than the Bose i used.

    Though to be fair, for HT and just loud noises and plane flyovers, the Bose were ok, not good, but ok. However for anything that needed definition, clarity, crispness, in other words, any sort of music, or vocals, the bose were hopeless. So now with the Katan, i am so happy i did get them as well as the Ninka's, they match well, and sound great.
    Now for a new center speaker, and i'll be right.
    Do you recommend i get the matching Linn Center Trikan (i think it is called) or are there any other brands that would go well?

    cheers
    KJ
     
  15. Tom D

    Tom D Stunt Coordinator

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    Hello all, I just added a Nad c272 power amp to my system to power the Ninka's. They are a nice match.

    Regards, Tom
     
  16. Keir H

    Keir H Second Unit

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    Kaj, the Trikan would work but the new Ekwal would be a better performer and would likely match a bit better. Also, if you could find a 5120 with the new tweet, its stellar as well.
     
  17. Kaj

    Kaj Stunt Coordinator

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    Hi,

    Right, i've decided i am going to upgrade the center as well, or at least get some prices.

    So i need a bit of help,
    There is nowhere close or that i know of, where i can listen to Linn speakers, or at least the Ekwal and Trikan next to each other, so i'll have to use a bit of your experience, and knowledge [​IMG], then i can ask to get a specific speaker in to test it out

    What is the difference between the two, other than price, that is not what i want to concern myself with at the moment.
    What, in sound quality, or should i just say sound, will be the difference? Has anyone heard the two together?

    your input is most welcome.

    Thanks
     
  18. Jim Swantko

    Jim Swantko Agent

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    Sorry to dredge up an old post - but I have some experience with the Ekwal center if the poster is still shopping (very doubtful! haha)

    I have the 5140's as mains, Ekwal for the center and Ninka's for rears all driven off a Linn 5125 amp and a Lexicon MC-1 Pre/Pro. I cannot be happier with my system. I did audition the Tirkan before I purchased the Ekwal and simply thought the Ekwal did a better job of blending with the 5140's.

    I'd say the ported enclosure helps the mid-base go just a little deeper - which sounded better to me.

    The Linns are a very unique sounding speaker in my opinion... it's not for everyone. I have found that they WILL reveal any weakness your system has (that's why I ended up with a Lexicon as it's DAC's really smoothed out the upper freq's).

    That being said - I am one of those people who just "get" what Linn does. The components seem to help each other accomplish the overall "Linn sound".

    Anyway - sorry to ramble. I don't think you can go wrong with either center - but for me the Ekwal sounded better.

    Now if I can just find a way to afford a couple more 5125's and go aktiv. [​IMG]
     

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