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Discussion in 'Speakers & Subwoofers' started by Craig Chase, Jul 29, 2004.
Cool, I'm looking forward to the results.
Jimmy, The 340's have a more dynamic presentation than the 170's, maybe a tad more forward and definitely wider horizontal dispertion. As for the silver finish, since they are custom, you should give Ascend a call. If I am not mistaken, they can match any color with the high quality semi-gloss automotive finish...but call them and discuss.
Curtis - I had asked David several weeks ago for a price on the custom finishes, and did not hear back. Do you have any idea what the cost factor is ?
I did get to see the silver and white when I picked up my Parents' speaker and stands, I was not able to discuss price....they were very busy. The finish looked spectacular, and since I have seen them, I have been debating on enhancing my livingroom.
Some further information on the review and testing. Tuesday, David Fabrikant (President of Ascend Acoustics) made a reasonable request. He asked me to try the Hsu STF-1 in the same position the 550's were located, to see how the bass extension was there. I did just that, and this location WAS definitely superior to the corner location. I have sent him a quick sweep today, and the STF-1 DOES hit 22/23 Hz at 4 dB down in this position, vs. the 28 Hz originally recorded. And in some earlier tests, the STF-1 had "only" hit 32 Hz at the 4 dB down point, with a position along the wall of the room. It is a fairly safe assumption that both the 550 Mark II's and the 340/STF-1 combination will not get as deep in the bass in most rooms as it does our basement room. It is also safe to say that our basement room has a very strong deep bass room reinforcement in the under 30 Hz range. I wanted to post this so those ordering either would not be disappointed and think there was something wrong with his system. Remember, getting into the upper 20's to lower 30's for $1000 is STILL great. Another area to discuss is the results of the blind testing. By placing the Hsu sub in the position where the 550 Mark II's were, I listened to all the deep bass laden material, such as the Steely Dan SACD... etc... last night. Based on what the system did there, here are some updates... 1. In the original test, the 550 Mark II's scored 400 points, and the 340/STF-1 combination scored 371 points. 2. Based on the extra extension, I am boosting the overall score of the 340/STF-1 combination to 380 points. For those interested, this means the 340/STF-1 socred a 95 average... or a solid "A" The 550 Mark II scored a 100 ... or a solid "A+".... I did listen to some of the more telling music last night on the 340's (against the 550's)... and they are an excellent speaker. With the Hsu sub in the listening position, the only area they lose out to the 550's IS in some of the detail. This is not to say the 340's LACK detail. The 550's are just nothing short of fantastic. For example... In the RogerWater's "In The Flesh" SACD, there is a voiceover of an older man talking... with the 550's each word he speaks is heard clearly. with the 340 you miss some of what he is saying. There are other examples like this, and they are all minor differences, but audible. Next, we did sensitivity at 1000 Hz... One Watt/one meter... The 550 Mark II registered 90 dB, and the 340 hit 92 dB ... Of course, this is with room gain, and a bit higher than than spec. Neither is a difficult speaker to drive, and both will play plenty loud with a 100 WPC amp. Enough for now... comments ?
quote: "Enough for now... comments?" Craig, where are the charts?... -THTS "...hi, my name is Frank...and am an SVS bassaholic..."
Your comments on the detailedness, and with my experience with the Ref1 and CMT-340, it seems the 550 surpasses them. I need to follow folks' advice and hear a pair.
Frank, We will eventually get to charts. It may take some time to put them all together. When you take in room sweeps, each time you move the speaker or microphone, you get a different response. So... Which charts do you put up? Curtis... First, These speakers were very close. So don't expect to fire up a pair and hear huge differences. Second, In the 18 months I have read your posts, can you point me to a time where you picked anything over either Ascend or Hsu ? I know you love your stuff, and while you don't stoop to the "everything else is bad" like a lot of guys do, you DO have your favorites... Nothing wrong with that... as you are always nice about your preferences. On another forum, I was taken to task by a gent who was suggesting I was wrong in stating that the SVS sub in a test was slightly beaten in upper bass detail by another sub. He is a total SVS fan, and I think that is ok, too. But he had never done blind listening tests between the subwoofers in question. I do blind listening tests for a reason (it is fair).
I don't know where the post is now....but I would take a Ref1. Its just cost more than I have in my budget. I have also stated that I like the RSC200. You are right Craig, I don't grade speakers, just state my preferences.
Curtis, I hope you DO know I was typing and smiling at the same time. I think it is GREAT that you have your preferences. You also do not hide them... yet you manage to proclaim you preferences with a sense of class, that is something more people need to do in this hobby. As the owner of retail businesses, we call that Brand Loyalty... and it is something we appreciate. And the best compliment I can think of for both these sets of speakers: I am looking forward to firing them up again. We are having a rainy summer here, and tomorrow, when normal late August days are 85 and sunny, it is supposed to be 65 and RAINING AGAIN... no golf... lots more listening.
craig:Great job as always.Very informative and entertaining,not easy to do.How do you compare the 550's to the 750's?I'm just curious as they are running the trade in sale now which would make the 750's cost less than the 550's for me,with trade in.I'm just curious,as I'm pretty happy with my current speakers.And since I can't hear them easily.could you compare the 550-750 to the maggies?Just informally,as a frame of reference.The 3.6 is kinda my dream speaker,the best I've heard close to my budget limit,so any impressions you have would be very helpfull.Thanks.
Doug - I listened to the 3.6 for a couple of hours last winter. I ended up preferring the Legacy Focus overall to it, and later preferred the Onix Ref 3 to the Legacy. The 3.6 ARE however, a truly classic design, and have enough of a different presentation that I can easily see someone liking them over other designs. My problem with them was a lack of macro-dynamics. The excel in the micro-stuff, and are easy to enjoy. If course, when you think about my preference for the Legacies, with a nickname like Craigsub, it IS possible deep bass is important to me... I have yet to hear the 750's, so I cannot answer your question with any validity. By the way... In an unrelated to Doug's question front... AV123 may send me the new 100 MK II center channel ... We may have to try the Ascend package and Rocket package in a home theater setting, using the Harmon Kardon AVR-630 and a Pioneer 563ia Universal player...
Craing & Curtis or anyone else, have you guys auditioned the Onix Ref 1 bookshelf speakers. Just curious how they sound for $1500. Just seems like a lot of money for such a small speaker...that is from a more budget conscious line of speakers...(compared to the super high end lines out there)
Kevin...I have heard it on two occasions. It is an excellent speaker IMO. I have only heard it in direct comparison to my CMT-340's and the VMPS 626R. I have not compared it directly to other $1500 speakers.
This would be great.
Brian....maybe you can help get him an Aperion setup too.
I am off to a social event, and I would appreciate it if there is anyone who thinks I have not been fair to either company in any way, please post your thoughts.... Thanks ! ...
Somebody else was in contact with them about Craig's proposed bookshelf shootout and they stated that they weren't comfortable providing speakers for a review by an "unknown individual". I don't defend this position and would love to know how the Aperion power towers or any Aperion system as a whole would fair. Maybe now that Craig has shown what he can do, they will change their minds. I will post my review of the Aperion VAC center next week. In summary I will say that I found (and think many of you would find) that the original center is better (even cost aside). I am also a little sceptical of the new dipole surrounds coming out. The power towers seem fine to me for a 2 channel setup but I question there value if there is a sub in the mix anyway. That being said, I love the sub and the original monitors and center. I especially love the seemless sound stage that having a truly matched center channel gives you. This is one thing I find lacking in many other speaker systems.
Brian ... In Aperion's defense regarding me, I did a review of the S-12 in March. I thought it was a very nice subwoofer for $599. It did a lot of things well... bass to 30 Hz, (well... even lower than that at reduced levels), excellent sound, and a great finish. There was almost NO notice of the review... I felt bad for Aperion, but noone seemed to pay much attention. Hey... and I still have the subwoofer here... back in the box. They were going to make arrangements for its return. If you know the guys there... Let them know I have it, and may even be able to sell it for them.
Craig, we have been communicating about optimizing the speakers in your room. Now that you have learned about the bass reinforcement in this particular room, do you think it has affected any of the testing you have done on other speakers and subs in that same room?