Ok, so for the nth time, I am starting yet another vs thread here.
I am planning to setup (call it downgrade or upgrade) a music only 2.0 (possibly 2.1 later) system that will be powered by my desktop and an old marantz SR7000 receiver. I currently have the setup using Athena AS-F1 towers that sound great but they are not placed correctly and hence I don't get the proper stereo effect.
So my plan is to get rid of them and buy another pair of bookshelfs that would be somewhat easier to play with with respect to placement. Please note that I would like to stay with known commercial brands mostly because I will have an upgradacitus and it would be easier to off load them on craigslist as opposed to internet direct companies sell and are loved by people here.
Using the chart below, this is what I am looking for ... a speaker that excels at high and mid range (basically bright and forward).
Bright = emphasized highs
Warm = emphasized bass
Laid-back = dip in the midrange
Forward = emphasized midrange
Harsh = peakiness in the upper midrange and low highs
Dark = downward tilted frequency response
Airy = upward tilted highs
Here is what i am thinking.
- Polk Audio RTi A1 (cherry colored) - can be had for around $259 - $400. They are the most beautiful in this list.
- Definitive technology SM45/55 - The company makes awesome speakers and I have yet to come across a bad review about their service or the quality of their products.
- Klipsch RB 51 ii (horn tweeter, i know but I don't mind).
- Energy RC-10 (heard the tweeters in them is something to drool over). They can be head for around $300 and frys had them for $200 a while ago.
I already own (and have owned) a bunch of speakers:
My main living area has Definitive technology studio monitor 450 paired with sub800 and am completely satisfied with their sound. I also own a complete set of pro monitor 1000s that are paired with Klipsch RF-35s and klipsch RW-12D in my main dedicated hometheater in the basement. As mentioned earlier, I also have Athena technologies AS-F1 that I liked as well (a bit bright but my marantz does a good job of warming them a bit).
I also have a pair of JBLs S26 that turned out to be too big for bookshelfs and sound awful. I also used to own polk audio monitor 70s that I hated due to their harsh sound, which makes me a bit hesitant towards polk but they are two different lines altogether.
So what do you guys think? Be gentle on me ;-)
Thanks for you time & recommendations in advance!.
As far as I am concerned, the Klipsch speakers absolutely sound like crap.
Here are some quotes from a Home Theater review of the Klipsch Reference series speakers:
"edgy and unnatural"
"shrill yet murky"
"lacked refinement and speed".
In other words, they are the worst of the worst; they suck"!
I also dislike the sound of the Energy speakers; not nice.
You will probably think this is crazy, but the Dayton B652 speakers are cheap and amazingly good.
I bought a pair of them recently for my den, to use with my 60-inch Sony TV and a Cambridge Audio amplifier.
They replaced some Boston speakers that cost around $200 a number of years ago, and sound much better.
The price; $40 per pair from Parts Express. Amazing.
For $300-$400 you can do better, but they are pretty good speakers.
Thanks for the reply. RTI A3 is a bigger speaker than what I am looking for.
Looking at Dayton B652 reviews on amazon, it seems like the new batch is a lemon. Its not the same speaker anymore. But thanks for the suggestion.
The Cambridge Audio speakers are probably better-sounding than the ones you listed, and a LOT better than the Klipsch or Energy speakers.
Cambridge has some good smaller ones.
Then go with your original idea of RTiA1 speakers. Or get a deal on a discontinued RTi model:
And at this price, it will be difficult to find nicer looking speakers. You can search for reviews online, but to get you started:
Now, whether you will like them or not is hard to say. But if I were looking for a speaker for under $200, I would probably buy the RTi4 for $174.99 direct from Polk from their eBay store.
Jack D Ripper, had I saw your post earlier, I would have gone for rti4s. But thanks for the links. I can use them to recommend them to a friend who is also looking.
The sound is very clean neutral. Good for music. The low end is missing as expected but I have it now paired with Klipsch SW-310 (I know its an over kill for the setup and I will be moving it to my dedicated home theater soon).
I would definitely recommend it to someone looking for a quality speaker at an affordable price. Having said that, i still think that upper end is not as we defined as I would hope to. Maybe its my source (mp3s although I have tried few flacs as well) or my marantz receiver which is already known for its warm sound or its just me and that I like bright speakers.
Thanks guys for your valuable input. Now off to scatching some other itch ...
Anyone looking for a 2.0 solution and have some space, I would also recommend polk audio rti a3. They have come down in price significantly and you can have them for $279 on ebay.