Ok, so I finally get to do some critical listening tonight. I'm going to post my thoughts as I go.
I decided to test them side by side with the sierras 1s as a reference although I have heard the Sierra 2s but it has been a while so I don't want to discuss them.
I did level match and the speakers were set up very similarly with sierras having a slight toe in and a little further apart. From my lsitening I don't think the BMRs need any toe in and can be a little closer together because of better dispersion. Also I listened in the sweet spot for now and did not move around the room, but I'll get to that eventually. But I can tell you already there is no comparison there, the BMRs are far superior. I can walk out of my living room around the corner and up the stairs and the sound quality is still very clear without losing much volume. I'll come back to that at a later date.
So I started off with my speaker testing list which I always run through with every speaker I buy. First song was Ray Charles "Georgia on my mind".
The BMRs really stood out by producing a more natural sound. I call it depth, while the sierras 1s seem slightly forward. The Sierra vocals are more pushed toward at you, while the BMRs sound like your listening to someone set back on the stage. Also the BMRs feel more realistic because of the wider soundstage. With the sierras 1s the vocals would have a nice dispersion through the center of the soundstage between the speakers, but not so much outside of that. You could clearly place the speakers when hearing background instruments specifically. The BMRs didn't have the issues with the soundstage extending out where I was having a very difficult time placing the speaker location at all. The bass was definitely better on the BMRs with very tight controlled sections when needed. The sierras did a nice job on the bass, but wasn't as tight in a few sections.
Next Steve ray Vaughen "little wing". The soundstage was definitely improved for the Sierras on the this song. However, again the BMRs had more depth and soundstage make the sound much more natural. There were also a few sections where Vaughen does some really fast guitar segments. The BMRs, I was able to hear each note without getting somewhat muddled like the Sierra 1s. Lastly the drum kicks were much more pronounced and tight on the BMRs, which makes sense given the larger driver and bigger cabinet. Although the BMRs were clearly better I always enjoyed the sierras 1s with the song particularly. The BMRs just took it to the next level.
Next up Al Green, "simply beautiful". The song is more like he is sitting right of front of you so soundstage isn't so much of an issue here. Again the BMRs were more natural due to the sound depth, the sierras were more in your face, not as smooth either for the vocals for Al. The bass was also more pronounced and felt with the BMRs. I could actually felt the bass sitting there listening to the song about 9ft away. It wasnt in the floor feeling, it's was kind of strange. I may have to come back to that because I haven't had that happen that I can remember.
Now D'angelo Cruisin'. For the song the lyrics are more recessed making the sierras 1s improved here. However there a lot punchy bass notes close together in the song. The Sierras struggled with note seperation and were slightly muddled. The BMRs were much better here with emphasis while remaining tight. Again it seems to me like the BMRs the bass sound is more in the air while the Sierra 1s more in the ground feeling. Not sure if I'm explaining that exactly right.
Next Norah Jones "in the morning". I have always found that if the speaker is bright at all her voice tends to show it. The BMRs handled the song wonderfully, with a very natural sound without any forwardness or brightness. This was actually my favorite song on my list to demo on the BMRs. I have yet to hear that song sound that good and I have heard it on speakers much more expensive. The RAAL really shines.
Miles Davis "flamenco sketches". There was actually some background noise in the recording I hadn't previously heard before. The BMRs clearly captured this. The horns really shined on with the RAAL. The piano sounded accurate and natural. The sierras were more forward causing some slight fatigue to me through the heavy horn sections.
Lastly for tonight Rick Ross "Aston Martin music"
Well this one I am not so sure. I always thought the bass hit harder on this song than the BMRs really managed. Not sure if it was sub 30s notes the BMRs are missing. There were definitely some tight notes, but it seems like something was missing. I'll have to come back to this later.
That's it for tonight. I will say I can't imagine any other speaker that can compete with these at this price given the high quality cabinets from Jim and the sound from Dennis. These are really beautiful and excellent sounding speakers at a very modest 1600 dollar price point. I've always enjoyed the Acend speakers that I have heard and they really started me on the journey, but for the price the Sierra 2s, the direct competition in my mind, don't stand a chance given getting Jims cabnets, the higher volume and lower bass capabilities of the BMRs, and the wider dispersion using the BMR midrange. They have certainly exceeded my expectations and they were pretty high to begin with.
Note though they are huge when compared to most bookshelfs, much more like a mini tower. However to me, I really like the size as the stand out more which I enjoy. Especially when the finish is so amazing.
Here are a few pics of the BMRs and sierras side by side. You can see what I mean about the size.
Last edited by jimrowe0; 05-02-2016 at 06:59 PM.