The most beautifulest speakers I ever saw!!! - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 39 Old 11-13-2009, 07:26 PM - Thread Starter
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Well, my NHT XdS just came through.

I bought them as a project as I wanted to learn a bit more about the use of digital crossovers and custom speaker designs.
I had seen pictures on the web, but I never really cared for the look of the speakers (don't know why).

Needless to say, it is a shame that no one really took a good picture of this piece of art that these speakers are... yes, piece of ART.
In fact, there is no picture that could do justice to these speakers.... they are stunning in person but shy from the camera (little tease they are ).

I have not listened to them yet as I am waiting for some more stuff; however, how these speakers sound is irrelevant at this point.
I think I have a crush.

Here they are, standing gorgeously in my 2.0 music listening room.










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post #2 of 39 Old 11-13-2009, 07:27 PM - Thread Starter
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post #3 of 39 Old 11-13-2009, 07:27 PM - Thread Starter
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post #4 of 39 Old 11-13-2009, 07:30 PM
 
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Wow, it's a jungle in there!
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post #5 of 39 Old 11-13-2009, 07:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by floridapoolboy View Post

Wow, it's a jungle in there!

I plan on adding more plants.
If I had my way, I would have a room that looked like the rain forest.
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post #6 of 39 Old 11-13-2009, 07:41 PM
 
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Plants are cool, they act as sound diffusers! Nice speakers, nice family. Enjoy!
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post #7 of 39 Old 11-13-2009, 07:42 PM
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They look sexy for sure.
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post #8 of 39 Old 11-13-2009, 07:44 PM
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Those stands are some of the beautifulest I've seen too - what are they? Looking forward to finding out if the NHT's sound as good as they look!

Ron
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post #9 of 39 Old 11-13-2009, 07:51 PM
 
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Those "Special Dark" Xds sure are pretty. I never cared for the stock colors, they seemed over the top to me. Hope they work for you!
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post #10 of 39 Old 11-13-2009, 08:00 PM
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Very Nice. Congrats!

Chris
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post #11 of 39 Old 11-13-2009, 08:16 PM
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Did you get the sub with them as well as the DEQX unit?

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post #12 of 39 Old 11-13-2009, 08:29 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RonaldoCombs View Post

Those stands are some of the beautifulest I've seen too - what are they? Looking forward to finding out if the NHT's sound as good as they look!

Ron

The stands are also NHT (matching stands).

I am dying to hear them.
I have the digital crossover and amp, but I am waiting on some cables (XLR cables).

Quote:
Originally Posted by floridapoolboy View Post

Those "Special Dark" Xds sure are pretty. I never cared for the stock colors, they seemed over the top to me. Hope they work for you!

I never cared for the stock color either.
However, I am rethinking that too.
I mean, even the special dark did not floor me when I saw them on the web.
They are a thing to be seen in person.
The color shift and glow cannot be captured in camera.

Compare my pics to this:


The attention to details on these speakers is extremely high.
Even the included speaker cables are well built and plenty long (25 feet each, I think).
The back of the stands has special hooks to hold the cables nice and neat too.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cschang View Post

Did you get the sub with them as well as the DEQX unit?

No.
I have 2 of the NHT power 2 amps and the Behringer DCX 2496.
I am currently building a custom set of mid-bass boxes and a custom set of subwoofers.
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post #13 of 39 Old 11-14-2009, 09:43 AM
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Very nice.
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post #14 of 39 Old 11-14-2009, 09:57 AM
 
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There is something very wrong here. This thread should be labled "the worlds smallest home theater". What you need to do is listen to speakers not look at them, and you needa bigger TV which will make the little speakers look even smaller. Just having fun, enjoy
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post #15 of 39 Old 11-14-2009, 11:02 AM
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Very nice...nothing like first love ehhh??? I hope they sound just as good.

Jose.
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post #16 of 39 Old 11-14-2009, 12:09 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by googlegod View Post

There is something very wrong here. This thread should be labled "the worlds smallest home theater". What you need to do is listen to speakers not look at them, and you needa bigger TV which will make the little speakers look even smaller. Just having fun, enjoy

Err... it is not a TV.
I use that screen with my MCE media extender to play music.
Yes, I could watch TV on it, but I really don't.
The setup is 100% pure music (including some music videos).

I have a separate HT room with an HD projector.
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post #17 of 39 Old 11-14-2009, 12:32 PM
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That last pic is adorable.

What are you using for subs, now, specbx?

"All men are frauds. The only difference between them is that some admit it. I myself deny it."
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post #18 of 39 Old 11-14-2009, 12:38 PM
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Is that just Canare 4S11 that they came with?

"All men are frauds. The only difference between them is that some admit it. I myself deny it."
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post #19 of 39 Old 11-14-2009, 03:08 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sivadselim View Post

That last pic is adorable.

What are you using for subs, now, specbx?

Thanks.
It is hard to get a good size perspective on the speakers.
So, I had my daughter model them.

As far as the subs, I am building them now.
I had ordered a Klipsch RT-10D, but I returned it.
So now, I am building a set of mid-bass and a set of subs as I want something more musical for this setup.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sivadselim View Post

Is that just Canare 4S11 that they came with?

No, they are Supra RONDO-4x2.5 (http://www.madisound.com/catalog/pro...oducts_id=1250).
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post #20 of 39 Old 11-18-2009, 08:30 AM - Thread Starter
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Still waiting on some XLR to RCA cables to demo these speakers.
The first ones I had ordered were a bust.
See this post: http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...5#post17556645

On the other hand, I have ordered another set of the XdS just in case I want to go multi-channel later.

I want to check how a XdS acts as a center before ordering one more for a 5.X setup.
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post #21 of 39 Old 11-26-2009, 07:49 AM - Thread Starter
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This is not a full review of the XdS, but some early comments/impressions of my setup.

My setup:
- NHT XdS satellites (4 of them but using just 2 for now)
- Behringer DCX2496 digital crossover and equalizer
- Linksys DMA2100 (MCE extender)
- Yamaha v663 (temporary)
- Polk Audio RTi10* (temporary)

*The RTi10 are from my existing setup.
They served double duty in this test:
1. as full range speakers to compare the XdS against
2. as mid-bass for the XdS (frequencies below 151hz since my custom mid-bass modules are not ready yet)

Amplification:
I wish I could have used my two NHT Power 2 amps (200w/ch), but an integrated amp works best for this setup (volume control reasons).
I should have a new integrated amp (7ch and 110w/ch) in next week.

I knew when buying the XdS that they lacked in the mid-bass.
This was confirmed during my auditioning.
As stated, I am building my own custom mid-bass to make up for this deficiency.
However, those mid-bass modules are not yet ready.
So, I used the RTi10 as mid-bass to the XdS.
Before anyone looks down upon this, note that it worked wonderfully after adjusting for time delay and placement.

The configuration:
  • Digital out from the DMA2100 into the DCX2496
  • Analog out from DCX2496 into the Y-663 (multi-channel in)
  • The crossover (Linkwitz-Riley) points were at 151hz and 2.35khz with a 48dB slope on both LP and HP.
  • The front channels on the Y-663 amplified frequencies from 151hz and below, the surround channels-> frequencies up to 2.35khz, and the SB channels-> 2.35khz and up.

Adjustments:
I tried moving the lower crossover point from 151hz to 200hz, but the sound became lifeless.
Moving the lower crossover point to 110hz made the speakers lose their clarity, and they turned muddy.
Setting it at 151hz was just right.
Similarly, a crossover slope less than 48dB had an immediate discernible negative effect on sound clarity.
In all, when the speakers are crossed at the right points with a steep enough slope, they behave remarkably well.

Listening:
I first listened to the XdS by themselves (without using the RTi10 as mid-bass).
Vocal tracks sounded as transparent as a speaker can get (at least I think).
Without using fancy adjectives, we will just call this: clarity.
I define clarity as undistorted and well articulated sound.
This clarity was maintained even at high volume levels.
In comparison, I could detect some distortions with the RTi10 in the higher ranges at times but never with the XdS.

With no EQ, the speakers are very neutral with a slight edge (55/45) on being bright (mostly from the mid-bass deficiency and the tweeters being right at ear level).
This is fairly good, as one can easily EQ to taste.

Integration:
As mentioned, I integrated the XdS with the RTi10 to see how they would sound in a full range setup (albeit an unconventional one).
I was shocked at how well the integration went since the configuration was a bit frankenstein'ish.
Not only that, it proved quite flexible as far as placement to achieve the most favorable bass output and mid-range imagery.
I have heard of people saying that the full tower design was a thing of a compromise at time.
I have to say that I now agree.
I had initially thought I would have localization issues by not having everything as a vertical array and crossing as high as 151hz.
No such thing!
Everything blended in, and I was not able to localize the bass.
This is encouraging since I am building the mid-bass as independent modules (2x 7 inch woofers in each module).
Doing an A/B test between the integrated XdS + RTi10 vs the RTi10 full range was surprisingly easy with my configuration (single remote click).

What I still don't like:
Crossing the XdS at 151hz means that it is still handling a good part of the mid-bass.
As such, the mid-bass weakness is not perfectly addressed.
Relaxing the slope on the HP of the lower crossover point leads to some harmonics (mostly off-axis dispersion) and localization issues (I am going to retry and play with placement).

Frankly, I think to cross higher than 151hz, I would have to mount everything in a vertical array, which is something I don't want to do.
Otherwise, off-axis dispersion issues are going to be even more pronounced.

Anyway, these are again some quick comments/impressions.
I will play with the setup some more and report back.
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post #22 of 39 Old 11-26-2009, 11:56 AM - Thread Starter
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Here are the pics as the setup currently stands.




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post #23 of 39 Old 11-26-2009, 10:49 PM
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What EQ points have you added to the DCX2496 to adjust for the drivers response in the XdS cabinets?

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post #24 of 39 Old 11-27-2009, 10:12 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Hidley View Post

What EQ points have you added to the DCX2496 to adjust for the drivers response in the XdS cabinets?

None yet as I have not taken any measurement.
I am waiting on a number of things (mid-bass, mic, amp) before starting to take measurements and EQ'ing.
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post #25 of 39 Old 11-27-2009, 11:03 AM
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Sorry man, these are the most beautiful speakers in the world...

http://www.wilsonaudio.com/product_i..._loc_large.jpg

Not that yours aren't cute little boogers!

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post #26 of 39 Old 11-27-2009, 11:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flyng_fool View Post

Sorry man, these are the most beautiful speakers in the world...

http://www.wilsonaudio.com/product_i..._loc_large.jpg

Not that yours aren't cute little boogers!

Beauty is in the eye of the beer holder: I really don't like the looks of Wilsons (though I'm sure I'd love their sound). The home they are set up in is pretty gorgeous though!
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post #27 of 39 Old 11-27-2009, 12:09 PM
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the Wilsons look like ass

xd's in special dark with matching stands are sweet, there should be more rounded corners in the speaker world

too bad NHT never hired anyone with some business education higher than high school
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post #28 of 39 Old 11-27-2009, 12:21 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flyng_fool View Post

Sorry man, these are the most beautiful speakers in the world...

http://www.wilsonaudio.com/product_i..._loc_large.jpg

Not that yours aren't cute little boogers!

Well, they are cute, honest, and do not attempt to overtake your whole space.

I like everything Wilson makes, but the MAXX and Alexandria are a little over the top for me.

Now, if you had said something like the Sonus Faber Cremona Auditor or Magico Mini II... well, then I would ask you to leave my thread alone.
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post #29 of 39 Old 11-27-2009, 02:29 PM
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...indeed very nice
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post #30 of 39 Old 11-27-2009, 07:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spectrumbx View Post

Well, they are cute, honest, and do not attempt to overtake your whole space.

I like everything Wilson makes, but the MAXX and Alexandria are a little over the top for me.

Now, if you had said something like the Sonus Faber Cremona Auditor or Magico Mini II... well, then I would ask you to leave my thread alone.

Yup, those are mighty purdy!

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