Originally Posted by popalock
They are definitely already in another league...price league.
Even if 1 or 10 fellow AVS'ers tag along and end up giving you the validation needed to sway your opinion, you still would be missing approval from...your room.
I've been feeling a bit jaded over the past few months listening to a lot of different speakers all in different spaces. I just don't see how anyone can definitively say that speaker x is better than speaker y, especially when you bring said speaker in a different acoustical environment it changes EVERYTHING
So this repeat performance (in their space) sounds like it's going to be a lock. Even if you were to bring your 212's to compare them directly, it would be a totally different listening environment and will inevitably make your 212's sound different (better? / worse?) that what may be used to.
The M2's were designed to have one of the flattest FR curves most people have ever seen! How does that translate in the room you are demoing them in?
Sounds like you want to make a big money decision based on a (most likely) better optimized space for those particular speakers and some subjective opinions from other enthusiasts that you (and I myself) respect and trust. I mean, I understand if you want to make a buying decision on those points alone and would rather keep the demo casual, but man... Wouldn't you like to objectively see how the time and frequency domains are effecting your subjective impressions?
You should let your host know that you are (at least) bringing your Omnimic to run some sweeps and do some testing. Unless a $20K decision just isn't worth the hassle.
I'd just hate to see their decay measure similar to this:
Only to find that the M2's don't sound incredible in your room because your decay measures closer to this:
Those are extreme examples, but I'm sure you get my drift.
Would be cool if you could get detailed measurements at their shop, then take the time to try to replicate the FR and waterfall in your room...Maybe it could be an improvement or really close to what you were hearing with the M2's? In theory?
Just trying to keep part of your kids college fund intact.
Your points are very, very, very well taken and well written. I appreciate the response and it's intent immensely.
Prior to hearing the M2's I would have been "+10" about your post and the whole issue because, quite frankly, over the past couple of years of tracking down and listening to the top dog high output designs in the JTR/Seaton price range, I have not heard any design that was head and shoulders above any of the others. Different rooms definitely changed the character of speakers to a degree, but my overall impressions have always been consistent across very different rooms. The overall strength of a design has always shown through, even if it didn't have exactly the same sonic character from room to room. I've never thought my 212's sounded bad, nor have I ever heard them elevate their performance into another class altogether - in any room. In other words, although the 212 is a great speaker and I still love it regardless of some nits I have with it, I have never, in any room, thought to myself that it might actually be the "perfect" speaker, or thought that it ever truly realistically reproduced piano keystrokes, or had a special clarity, or that it exactly and realistically reproduced vocals so convincingly that the artist was in the room. Now I'm not beating on my 212's, because I didnt experience that with any of the others either. Seaton, JTR, Danley. I could be happy with any one of them. They're all great speakers and although different, similar in overall SQ IMO.
But the differences I heard with the M2 were not on the same level as say differences in the 212's from room to room, or the differences between the Seatons or the JTR's. It was more fundamental than that. Could it be I've simply never heard all the other speakers in the right room? Or properly setup? Could be I suppose. But I can tell you the room in which I listened to the M2's was not that room either.
Two walls were glass. There is a huge desk in the fashion of a control board in front of the speakers, and a computer monitor blocking part of the horn. No carpet - all hardwood floors. Yea, there were some 1st reflection and corner panels but no bass traps. This was NOT some high end optimized listening room at a boutique showroom. This was in a warehouse and was simply a windowed office cubicle that probably housed a secretary before they put the speakers in there. Seriously. One thing I'm not concerned about is whether I can match the acoustics of that space. If anything it was an acoustic disaster. When I walked into the room my first thought was I can't believe they're demoing speakers of this price range in a room like this!
So I know you're jaded, but have you considered the fact that it's possible out of all the speakers you've listened to that you simply haven't heard something like the M2? Just looking at the FR suggests there is definitely something different from the other speakers. And there's an entirely unique compression driver design from anything your ears have ever heard. After all, we've all been running in the same basic circle of speakers and designs. I'm comfortable in saying that I've likely heard 95%(or some high percentage) of all the speakers you've heard in the past couple of years. I will simply suggest that the M2 might just be different enough from those designs to explain what I heard as more than just being in a great room - which it clearly wasn't. Believe me, I am more than willing to accept the fact I could be deluding myself, but there is still the other side of the coin.
I'm no acoustic newbee, nor an expert, but I know enough to see that the room had enough disasters to make me cringe. But if that's the room I have to replicate it should be relatively easy. Rip my carpets up, place a big coffee table and large family photo frames in front of the horns, and a few 2" wall panels and I'm good to go
. But I have yet to put a speaker in my room that I thought sounded good in another room and then after placing in my room I felt like I just got stuck with a different speaker. Might need a little tuning or adjusting, but fundamentally the same speaker. So I'm not overly concerned here about that, but I also don't discount the possibility that it could happen.
No, I'm mostly worried that I succumbed to expectation bias or a placebo effect. Having only listened one time my mind is worried about these things. If anything I'll be able to improve the acoustics. One or two other people looking at me saying, "dude, you're not hearing things" would actually make me feel better. Not just the sales guy shaking his head affirmatively and saying, "yep, everyone's been saying that". If they don't hear what I'm hearing then I have to decide if it's just a preference thing or I'm doing the $10,000 speaker wire thing. Or the, "I just upgraded my 75 watt amp to 100 watts and they're like new speakers!" thing.
The measurement suggestion is great and I will definitely do that. I suppose if I bring them home and they sound like crap in my room I could finally give my wife that coffee table she's always wanted and let her decorate the space
Fact is I never thought I would consider a speaker in this price range and it's causing me to do more than my typical impulse buy. You're opening line suggests you're thinking these are simply overpriced retreads, and that is a healthy attitude. But my initial listening impressions have me going, "dude, I'm tellin' you, these might be different...."