Originally Posted by Jedirun
I guess it is time to post my initial impressions of the Triple 8's.
First some background information on the room:
I have 3 Triple 8's placed vertically below my front projector screen. I moved the coaxial to the to the top position. (It was not too hard. It just required a couple of Allen wrenches.) They fit perfectly below the screen in front of my 26" tall acoustic panels. This places the center of the coaxial approximately 27" off of the floor due to the cement riser built into the floor at the front of the room, and approximately 5 below the bottom of the picture. My ear height is approximately 30" off the ground when fully reclined so this is not too bad.
I have 9 acoustic panels in my 1700 cubic foot room. Two 2" thick, Five 4" thick and two 6" thick.
Each Triple 8" is being powered by a single channel of an Audiosource Amp 300. I am using an Onkyo TX-NR905 as a preamp and I ran Audyssey prior to my listening tests. The Audiosource amps are rated at 150 watts RMS at 8 ohms and 235 watts RMS at 4 ohms so there is not a whole lot of difference between them and a reasonably high end receiver.
I am using my old left and right (DIY Vifa MTM's Vifa XT25 Dual, Concentric Dome Ring Radiator tweeter and two Vifa PL18 7" woofers with an 8" rear mounted Seas passive radiator) for side surrounds and my old side surrounds (Madisound Vifa Studio kit speakers, Same tweeter with a Vifa PL14 5.5" woofer with a 6" rear mounted Seas passive radiator) for rear surrounds. My old center was also a Vifa Studio.
I am using a NHT1259 based sub in a sealed 3 cubic foot, diy box with a 250 watt amplifier.
My own background:
I have used lower end home theater speakers in the past (top of the line Cambridge Soundworks), and since the current upgrade is from DIY speakers, I can not say that I am by any means an expert in high end sound, but I have been an enthusiast for a while.
Now my impressions of the Speakers:
I think the speakers look awesome. I ordered them with Speakon connections and steel grills to protect them from my 21 month old daughter. I really like the look of the steel grills. I think I like it even better than the look of the fabric grills. of course my speakers are in the garage, I have different tastes than most, and I have been ogling RMK!'s system on the forums for months. By the way, wiring up 4 by 12 gauge wire into the Speakon connectors, was not nearly as bad as I thought it would be.
Calibration and Sound:
My old left and right were calibrated at +6. These are to my ears, very good sounding speakers. They sounded considerably better than my Madisound Vifa Studio Kit speakers. Two of Triple 8's were calibrated at -12 and one was calibrated at -11.5 by Audyssey. I was worried that they may need to be adjusted even lower, because -12 is the lower limit for Audyssey. However, I double checked the measurements with a tripod mounted Radioshack SPL meter and the levels were spot on. That 18 db change in sensitivity has got to be a big deal, my receiver and then later, my amps were probably struggling to provide the SPL I was asking for with these speakers.
Everyone knows that these speakers can go loud. So I thought I would focus on their ability to play the tiny details with the volume down.
So far, the Triple 8's have sounded fantastic with everything I have thrown at them. The biggest thing I have noticed is that I can hear the quietest detail in a movie and can hear every word that is spoken without having to crank the volume up, but when I do crank it up it stays just as crystal clear. The ability of these speakers to reproduce dialog is amazing.
With respect to music, they have sounded great with everything from Classical to heavy metal.
Someone asked a question about whether there would be a hiss from the speakers. I have not noticed any hiss whatsoever.
My wife and I went into one of the higher end local home theater stores a couple of days ago while waiting to meet some friends for dinner and heard a demonstration of some Paradigm speakers with the gunfight scene from Open Range. They sounded very good. My wife really like the fact that you could hear the dialog without having to constantly adjust the volume of the system. Her biggest complaint with our old speaker setup was that in order for the dialog to be understandable, I would turn the volume too loud and when the action scene hit, it would be too loud for her. To my ears, my current system puts the Paradigm one to shame. We rented Open Range yesterday and will hopefully get a chance to compare the scene today using the Triple 8's. It will be nice to see what my wife thinks of the comparison, since it takes a big difference before she will acknowledge an improvement in sound quality.
I will post some pictures soon.