Wilson Audio Alexandria X-2 Series II Review - A Little Different Review - Page 4 - AVS Forum
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post #91 of 109 Old 07-06-2009, 10:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thirdeye11 View Post

You know it sucks if the time someone needs to get out and retire is RIGHT NOW, but for those who can wait a year or two the market will recover.

I knew a Cisco employee who was about to retire in a month but the dotcom bubble burst. He said he was going to wait until it goes up to 80 again. I thought that really messed up someone's life. What happens if he has to wait 2-3 more years. Instead of enjoying his retirement...
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post #92 of 109 Old 07-07-2009, 06:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Veda View Post

I knew a Cisco employee who was about to retire in a month but the dotcom bubble burst. He said he was going to wait until it goes up to 80 again. I thought that really messed up someone's life. What happens if he has to wait 2-3 more years. Instead of enjoying his retirement...

Throughout the history of the market, with the exception of the Great Depression it has recovered in an average of 10 months. I don't see this one being much different (perhaps we'll see 12-14 months before we get back to where the dow was). Either way yes it sucks to lose a year or two of retirement, but that's just life. I hope it doesn't happen to me one day, but I have a long way to go yet.
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post #93 of 109 Old 08-04-2009, 04:27 PM - Thread Starter
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I am interviewing the Meridian 808.2 CD player in a few days. It will reside here for a few days I assume, at least. My electronics are OLD. What will this single new piece of equipment do for me?

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post #94 of 109 Old 08-04-2009, 09:40 PM
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aehaas, there is no way for us to tell you other than for you to listen to it yourself. We can say that newer DAC's have better SN ratio etc etc... but that would mean nothing since your room, system, and ears are different than others. I would say this though, specifically for CD players and DAC's, price has nothing to do with the sound quality.
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post #95 of 109 Old 08-18-2009, 05:05 PM - Thread Starter
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The audition is over. Thanks to George at AVS South in Tampa. He provided me with the Meridian to use and get a feeling for this past week.

This was my evaluation to George Liu:

"I played a bunch more cd's newer and older. What is very interesting is that there is no rhyme or reason. Some of any age sound a little better and others a lot better. One 1982 disc, Hayden Symphony no. 94, was just OK in the old cd player. I bought a recent recording that was rated 10/10 that sounds very very good. But the older one blew me away in the Meridian, WOW, I was shocked. I am thinking I may like it better than the newer one (recording) !"

I can tell you the Levinson equipment is almost as good however in 98 percent of the cd's. The build construction of the Levinson is also superior to anything else I have come in contact with. But it is clear that if you have the means an upgrade in cd players is due for.

I am testing the PS Audio next, the dac and transport. I will let you know how they compare. Lastly I want to try the new Ayre 5-xe MP. One of these three will win a position in my room.

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post #96 of 109 Old 08-18-2009, 08:23 PM
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those old cd's from the 80s probably sound a lot better than what they are putting out today because of all the compression they are using these days

check out this video

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Gmex_4hreQ

All this noise about noise.
♪♫♪♫♪♫♪♫♪♫♪♫♪♫♪♫♪♫♪♫♪♫♪♫
Finding the acoustic sweet spot.
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post #97 of 109 Old 08-19-2009, 05:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aehaas View Post

The Infinity IRS Betas were hybrids, ribbons for the mids and uppers and 8 cone woofers for the bass. They were very very good but did not go loud at all and strained when opera divas hit the high notes. Also, percussion instruments did not go well if turned up at all.

Before that I had B&W 801 s and those were great stuff as well.

I found no weakness in the Wilsons. One thing is because they matched my room well out of the box (crates). Even better is that they can be tuned any number of ways by varying the resistors in the back.

A big mistake may be that many listen to them with the grill covers on. They are dead compared to the sound with all the covers removed, including the one on the upper back side.

When you turn them up loud as I do some times, you can do so without straining them to levels you can only imagine with other high end speakers. This was important to me, as well as the ability to play at very low levels as my queen uses.

Ways to save money, do your own yard work. I am the mechanic, plumber, painter, pool man and yes, the yard boy:

First off, congrats for all of your success, moneywise soundwise careerwise.
It would be strange if some others like us who do not have the means to earn that kind of money, no matter how hard we would choose to work day and night, never got envious of those sfutt you've been able to have in your possession.

The matter gets even worse if I was to reveal to you that I'm actually a physician myself. A surgeon. With something like US $100,000 in student loan so that I could manage my studies.
The only problem is that I live in and was educated not in US but in Sweden.
As a surgeon, my salary is today, in US dollars, something like US $65000. So probably 1/10 of what you would make. And stuff are essentially more expensive and the living standards are way under what you're used to.

So I'm not a fan of saying "you can get whatever you want as long as you work hard to get it". That is a cliché. In addition, you must be lucky enough to be at the right place doing the hard work. No matter how hard I work I could never even get close to the same kind of standard in life. And moving abroad is even harder since I would have to start my education essentially all over again...

But, still, I'm really happy that you can afford your lifestyle. It's the openness and these kind of threads started by yourself which makes it interesting and worthwhild being here, reading about good stuff, learn about other people's experiences and learn even more about the same hobby we all share here.

So, with all honesty, I do hope that you enjoy your new gear a lot. Please keep us updated with more details in the future.

Thank you!
Sincerely,
/B.
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post #98 of 109 Old 01-24-2010, 08:48 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wgriel View Post

Well, from what I gather the OP is NOT into home theater (or surround) just into 2 channel music. If that's the case, upgrading the display is probably not a priority, and subs may not be all that important either. I imaging the X-2's can deliver a pretty satisfying music experience on their own!

I asked Charles Hansen if the upcoming DX-5 player can be made to incorporate the LFE of video discs into my 2 channel system. He added a switch on the unit to enable just that to be an on - off option.

Once I get this unit I will further the review. I replaced the Threshold amps with Ayre MX-Rs and the Mark Levinson preamp with the Ayre KX-R.

To please the boss I made some cosmetic changes to the room and the speakers, pictures forthcoming...

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post #99 of 109 Old 01-24-2010, 09:56 AM
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Great set-up aehaas! Just curious what other speakers you auditioned before settling on the Alexandrias and why you chose them over the others?

I've demoed them as well and think they are the most impressive speakers that I've heard along with the MBL 101Es, which are totally different, but equally impressive to me in their own way.
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post #100 of 109 Old 01-24-2010, 10:54 AM - Thread Starter
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There was no sudden purchase of the speakers. I kept up, auditioned many at shows and dealerships and in homes. This was a constant, ongoing process.

Key features that I was looking for included:
-Ability to play at high volumes without distortion.
-Ability to play at low volumes (the wife's listening pref - and she is a critical listener.
-No distortion during a soprano's highest and loudest of notes (limiting capabilities in many speakers). Hitting bells and other effects in some operas are also very limiting.
-Good, tight, voluminous, low frequency bass. Bass is often lacking in classic pieces so you want to be able to reproduce every bit of what is there.
-The ability to tune the speakers to the listener, position, and room. The possibilities are infinite with these speakers and adjustment in time domain, frequency response volumes and direction are possible.
-Efficiency should be good but not an absolute requirement. The Wilson's are almost as efficient as horns.
-I always use a few of my own opera testing CD's. I have not auditioned a speaker that could handle all that I threw at it until now. I destroyed several drivers (names of the speakers withheld). While auditioning I was told many times not to turn up the volume any more as damage could result. The most damaging is always the human voice during a loud shrieking opera passage. A large choral section can be damaging - even though the overall volume of the music is relatively low.
-Finally imaging should be very good, it must be one of those at the top level.

Admittedly I did not seek out speakers to audition if reviewers stated there was a deficiency in areas I deemed were important.


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post #101 of 109 Old 01-24-2010, 11:19 AM
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Great, but what are the other speakers you listened to? And don't worry, we won't assume they are the ones that you blew the drivers!
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post #102 of 109 Old 01-24-2010, 11:59 AM - Thread Starter
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Second from the top was actually the Wilson MAXX. I felt it was just a tad short of my requirements in several categories.

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post #103 of 109 Old 01-24-2010, 07:40 PM
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Yes, I've heard the MAXX 3 as well and while they are probably superior to 95% of the speakers out there, they do not reach the level of the Alexandria X-2s, as expected as those are the top Wilsons!

Did you get an opportunity to also audition any speakers from say Wisdom, Magico, Goldmund, Kharma, JM Labs, Marten, Von Schweikert, Rockport, Avalon, or MBL, for example?

I'm just interested as you are one of the few posters here that actually bought the X-2s, so I think how you came to that decision probably holds more water to me than say a reviewer that didn't have to actually make the financial commitment.
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post #104 of 109 Old 01-25-2010, 03:59 PM
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Wow @ OP. Congrats.
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post #105 of 109 Old 01-25-2010, 06:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KyaDawn View Post

I'm just interested as you are one of the few posters here that actually bought the X-2s, so I think how you came to that decision probably holds more water to me than say a reviewer that didn't have to actually make the financial commitment.

I like this.
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post #106 of 109 Old 01-27-2010, 03:24 PM - Thread Starter
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Forgive my delays but I am really busy at this time. I did listen to ML and Avalon speakers in the not too distant past but do not remember the specifics. The most recent one other than the other Wilson was the Quad with subwoofers. Like all panel speakers there is a different sound to them. They work well but then fail with higher level transients.

I really found that the original IRS Betas I just sold for the Wilsons were hard to beat. I had them modified several times over the years - any time I listened to something that sounded as good. I always wanted to stay at the top.

It was only because the Infinity woofer cone surounds failed that forced my hand to buy something else now. I sold the old IRS system for 2,500 broken!

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post #107 of 109 Old 01-27-2010, 07:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aehaas View Post

Forgive my delays but I am really busy at this time. I did listen to ML and Avalon speakers in the not too distant past but do not remember the specifics. The most recent one other than the other Wilson was the Quad with subwoofers. Like all panel speakers there is a different sound to them. They work well but then fail with higher level transients.

I really found that the original IRS Betas I just sold for the Wilsons were hard to beat. I had them modified several times over the years - any time I listened to something that sounded as good. I always wanted to stay at the top.

Good stuff, well it's great that you found the speakers you were looking, congrats again on a really amazing set-up!

Quote:
Originally Posted by aehaas View Post

It was only because the Infinity woofer cone surounds failed that forced my hand to buy something else now. I sold the old IRS system for 2,500 broken!

Wow! In that case, keep me in mind if you ever want to sell your X-2s!
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post #108 of 109 Old 06-24-2010, 08:06 PM - Thread Starter
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Final room, full Ayre electronics. Stay posted for the updated review of what you see here:



Note: One thing that pleased the wife was to paint all the silver screws on the speaker drivers with flat black enamel.

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post #109 of 109 Old 07-05-2010, 07:16 PM
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beautiful system, beautiful cars ! congrats & more power!
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