Speaker Experiment!

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Craig Morris, Jan 24, 2002.

  1. Craig Morris

    Craig Morris Stunt Coordinator

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    I've long been considering replacing my Mirage OM-6/C2/R2 speaker set... the reasons are many, including the never-ending 'upgrade' bug, and the fact that they are physically too large for my room.
    My problem is I haven't heard any speakers, regardless of price, that have made me want to change my speakers. I've also become frustrated and the fun in my favourite hobby has been waning. It's been a pain in the @$$ to find new speakers!
    Due to room size issues, I have decided to go with a stand-mounted front speaker.
    For a sub, I have already decided on a REL Strata III, so the sub will not be part of the experiment.
    I'm calling this an experiment for the following reason. Everything I have heard, regardless of price, has involved some sort of compromise. Nothing has sounded 'perfect' to my ears. So I've decided to forget all I know, or all I think I know, and start from scratch, auditioning speakers as if I were brand new to this. A secondary component to the experiment is that I want to see if I can get satisfying sound for cheap. My mission is to find out just how little money I can spend and still be satisfied with the sound. Now, my experiment may fail. I may not find a speaker I like, or I may determine that I cannot afford the speaker I like... although I have no set budget going into this.
    The experiment will be limited to speakers I can audition and/or borrow locally.
    My short-list so far includes (can you tell I'm Canadian?)
    Paradigm Atom
    PSB Alpha B
    Axiom M22Ti SE
    I may add other speakers like the B&W DM303, Boston VR-M50, Energy Veritas 2.1, Paradigm Mini, etc. to the list, but I'm going to start there.
    If you have any suggestions, like speakers you think I should try, or whatever, feel free to speak up. Keep in mind that this will hardly be scientific... it's all about the fun. [​IMG]
     
  2. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    Hard to say, but I would definitely give the Mini Monitor a listen. I have owned Atoms, Titans and Minis. I settled on the Minis because they sound the best for music, between those. I have Titans in my bedroom because they have better bass, though they are not quite as tight and accurate as the Atom. Give Studio 20s a listen also.
    For B&W, I prefer the CDM line because of the Nautilus style tweeter. The CDM-1NT is one of my favorites. These are out of my price range though. Basically, I'm not willing to spend that much when, as you said, I can be happy with the Minis for much less.
    If you want other choices, consider the new offerings frm NHT. The SB1, SB2 and SB3 are all very good bookshelf speakers, and have the nicest cabinets I've ever seen. They are sealed and require a fair amount of power, but they are very accurate.
    KEF. [​IMG]
    nOhr would be another unique one, for what seem to be very reasonable prices, if you can find some to listen to (I've never heard them myself, but they get excellent reviews).
     
  3. JohnnyN

    JohnnyN Stunt Coordinator

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    I'd think that as part of your experiment you should give a fair listen to the atypical brands... I haven't heard the noRh speakers yet and I wouldn't normally bother to give them a chance because of the effort involved and their weird shape, but many on the board like them so if I was in your position i'd make it a point to try them simply because I normally wouldn't. Also along those same lines of thought try the swan divas??
     
  4. Marc H

    Marc H Second Unit

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    Craig,
    If you get downtown at all, audition some of our Totems. They may get you drooling [​IMG]
    I'd say they are a 'must' hear.
     
  5. Craig Morris

    Craig Morris Stunt Coordinator

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    Hey Marc,
    Actually, I did listen to some Totems at your store... I think Garth was helping me. I quite liked the Forests, but my room has been problematic with 'full-range' speakers, which is why I'm seeking a stand-mounted speaker.
    I'll have another look/listen when I drop in again. But I do have some concerns with Totem for HT... mostly involving matching the centre to the fronts. Also, I'm pretty much stuck with wall-mounting my surrounds... which could be interesting with Totems. I'm not too keen on drilling holes in my speakers.
    And what? Axioms aren't good enough for me? :p
    ------
    John, I auditioned B&W CDM and Matrix series in the fall and was thoroughly unimpressed. I think they are over-priced and over-rated. but that's just my opinion. [​IMG]
    As far as I know, NHT, nOhr, and Swan are unavailable to audition locally. I'm a demanding customer... I require local service. [​IMG]
     
  6. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    I sat with the CDMs for about an hour, with all NAD gear, and I was impressed. Maybe the NAD gear had something to do with it... [​IMG] Overpriced? That's for sure.
    I also listened to the DM601 series 2, but I wasn't all that impressed with them.
     
  7. Craig Morris

    Craig Morris Stunt Coordinator

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    Man, this sucks.
    My experiment is failing far quicker than I expected.
    I'm not a good liar... so the inevitable questions from sales guys are:
    1) What amp are you using?
    2) What speakers are you using now?
    As soon as they hear I have a Marantz SR-18 and the Mirage OM set they immediately begin talking up their more expensive speakers. How am I supposed to decide for myself what sounds good if they won't let me hear what I came to hear?!
    I'm ready to give up again. [​IMG]
     
  8. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    Don't tell them what you have [​IMG]
     
  9. steve paul

    steve paul Stunt Coordinator

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    IF YOU CAN by all means audition the Monitor Audio Gold Reference line, you can get the GR10's for $1150 a pair but they are INCREDIBLE...trust me, just listen to them. I have the 10's in teh rear and 60's up front but the 10's do almost as goo das my 60's up front!
     

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