Where do I begin?

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by BradD, Dec 5, 2003.

  1. BradD

    BradD Stunt Coordinator

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    After much researching on this and other A/V forums, I’ve noticed that there many “this speaker vs. that speaker” threads. This is understandable since a speaker purchase can be a considerable investment and the choices are almost unlimited. These threads generally don’t get many responses because there usually is no right answer since everyone’s tastes are different. Most replies indicate that the ideal way to determine which speakers best fit your needs is to listen to them in your home with your music. However, the choices are mind-boggling. Some of the more commonly mentioned speakers are Axiom, Boston Acoustic, B&W, Canton, DefTech, Dynaudio, Energy, HDT, Infinity, KEF, Klipsch, NHT, Paradigm, Polk Audio, PSB, Rocket, and Swan. Most of the companies I listed, along with many more I didn’t, have a speaker series within my budget. With so many speaker companies to choose from, obviously there is no practical way to listen to all of them. I have a budget and I want towers for my front L/R.


    So, how do I narrow down the choices before beginning the auditions?


    My usage will consist of 70/30 HT/Music.
    Room size 12'x24'
    The A/V receiver that will be used is the Denon 3803.
    I’m looking for towers between $1000-1500
     
  2. george king

    george king Supporting Actor

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    Brad,

    It can be overwhelming, and there is no way around auditioning. Take a bunch of music CDs that you know well, and listen. We can be of some help, but need more information. Is this $1-1.5K just for the fronts? What kind of sound do you like? Detailed, warm, etc. When we know a little more, then we can probably help you narrow your choices.
     
  3. John S

    John S Producer

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    On those threads I usually just convey my own experience about my choice and what I use. Not very helpfull at all, I admit.

    But I think I have the best sound that can be had for $1000 for a comeplete 7.1 system too or really even $750 for a 6.1 speaker for that matter.

    So that becomes even less helpfull even for those looking to buy.

    They are being discontinued, but the JBL s38's offer amazing sound for the money. I am not and have never been a fan of small sats with 6" or smaller woofs. I can say that strong recievers / amps that offer an all channel stereo really benefit from such an arrangement.

    Best of luck with your purchase. You may want to take a look at one of the sweetest speakers ever for the money, at least before they are no more. The JBL s38.....

    But your right sound is subjective, these just happen to be studio quality flat throughout the spectrum is all, and for many people, just sound dull because of it.

    Some of this comes from the rather long break in period, for the solid titanium tweets to what they call "open up".

    120 hours on average by the estimates.
     
  4. BradD

    BradD Stunt Coordinator

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    The $1-1.5K budget is just for the mains. I'm only shopping for them right now and will add a center, surrounds, and sub later. Whichever mains I go with, I will match them with a center of them same series afterwards.

    As far a warm vs. detailed goes I'm not sure which I prefer.
    I realize that will be a decision for me. Noone can really help me with that. I will audition but I have to eliminate a few first. Narrowing the list is what I find difficult. Creating a budget helped but there are still literally dozens of choices. Chosing between warm and bright should narrow the selection even more. However, I'm sure there are dozens of warm speakers. Do most people really go and audition 10 or 15 different speakers?

    Since I live in a large metro area, I shouldn't have any problem finding dealers that carry quality speakers. Maybe I should have asked this question. Of the mail order speakers which would you consider warm and which are bright? Also is there other sound qualities to listen for?
     
  5. John Robert

    John Robert Stunt Coordinator

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    I think you can pick 5 from your list and make a concerted effort to hear those. If you include differing types - Klipsch, Def Techs and Polks, for ex. - you'll have a good starting (and maybe finishing) place for your decision. Don't make yourself crazy thinking you have to hear 30 different brands or you'll miss the "only one" right for you...
     
  6. WayneO

    WayneO Supporting Actor

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    You can also call around to shops and see what's available in your area, that alone can cut your list down. For that money you can get a nice set of Paradigms.
     
  7. ChrisWiggles

    ChrisWiggles Producer

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    I myself, HATE shopping, but I LOVE shopping for audio gear. It's great fun. I would love to go back and shop for a zillion different speakers. I don't see why it's that unmanageable if you're got the time...
     
  8. John Robert

    John Robert Stunt Coordinator

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    I agree, but isn't there more enjoyment in listening to your own setup than "visiting" a bunch of different speakers at a dealer???
     
  9. george king

    george king Supporting Actor

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    John,

    Yes, but half the fun is getting there.

    Brad,

    Here is what you might do, and this would get you a fair way. Go listen to

    Paradigm
    Kef
    Def Tech
    Infinity
    Rockets (check out audioenvy.com to find someone in your area with those speakers)

    If you want to go a differnt route call Danny at GR Research (www.gr-research.com) and ask him if he knows of anyone with the new AV-3s in the area and audition those.

    In addition Axiom and Ascend offer 30 day money back return policy so you could try them.
     
  10. Michael R Price

    Michael R Price Screenwriter

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    You know, there are a few important questions you can ask that can really narrow down your search. Try these:

    What kind of music do you listen to?
    And how loud do you want to listen to it?
     
  11. BradD

    BradD Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks for the replies.

    What kind of music do I listen to?
    honestly, rock, metal, alternative, country, hip-hop, R&B

    and how loud?
    Well in my car all the way to 11, one louder[​IMG]
    but at home I don't plan on having any "club parties", so maybe soft to moderately loud.
     
  12. Michael R Price

    Michael R Price Screenwriter

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    Brad, do you intend to purchase a subwoofer and use an active crossover?
     
  13. BradD

    BradD Stunt Coordinator

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    I will purchase a sub at a later date. The Denon 3803 should have an active x-over.
     
  14. Bry_DD

    Bry_DD Second Unit

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    I have the Denon 3801 and purchase the Axiom M60 with matching center VP150 and I'm very happy with movie and dvd-a. very crisp and detailed. good luck on your search.
     
  15. Alan Pummill

    Alan Pummill Screenwriter

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    Bry_DD,

    I am getting ready to upgrade, Tell me, are the Axioms overly bright at the top end. I am upgrading from Monitor 7's because I have grown tired of the shrill highs.

    Sorry for interupting this thread!!
     
  16. Michael R Price

    Michael R Price Screenwriter

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    If you don't have a sub to start out with, I would suggest getting some relatively large speakers. Unless you can live without bass.
     
  17. Anthony Chiu

    Anthony Chiu Agent

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    I just picked up the Axiom master system. The system includes (2) M3's, 1 VP100 center, 2 Qs4 surrounds, and I went with the EP175 Sub (even though many suggested the HSU sub). I have them in a carpeted basement 14x16 room. After having these speakers for a mere 4 days, all I can say is WOW!
    Don't make yourself crazy. There are no "this one is better than that one - speaker".
    As far as being "bright", the room acoustics play a major role. My HT room is very subdued, and the Axioms sound very natural.

    You can pretty much spend 1K on ANY system, then close your eyes, and enjoy whatever purchase you decide on. They ALL sound great for that price.
    Just make sure they're big enough for the room.

    Have fun
     
  18. John S

    John S Producer

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    Without a sub, get at least Bookshelf speakers with an 8" Woof or larger.
     

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