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post #1 of 82 Old 11-05-2011, 07:09 AM - Thread Starter
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I am going to buy new speakers as soon as I can make a decision. Budget is up to 5k for 5.1 system. May just buy two floorstanders and a matching center for now and use my old speakers for surrounds. 50-50 HT-Music.

I have a Denon 3312 and an Emotiva XPA-5 already. Love them both. Also have two Polk 505 subs (I know there are better subs out there but they aren't bad and I plan on upgrading them later, after getting new speakers). Room is 17 by 17 by 8 with one end mostly open to adjoining room.

After much research, I am primarily looking at:

1. Salk SongTowers and SongCenter (stellar reviews for music, HT not sure, beautiful cabinets)

2. Mythos ST and CS8080HD (owners seem to love them, dynamic, decent looking)

3. KEF Q900 and center (great reviews, not great looking)

4. Polk LsiM 707 or 705 (Look good, not a lot of info as they are really just now hitting the streets)

Are my impressions of these speakers accurate?
At this range I know there are many choices. Opinions and advice welcome and appreciated. Looking forward to becoming an audiophile, I want killer sound for The Beatles, The Doors, Stones, Buffett...not to mention my BluRays.

JTR Noesis 228 (LCR)
Polk Audio LSiM 703 (Surrounds)
Seaton SubMersive HP Plus and Minus (Subs)
Denon 3312 (Receiver)
Sherbourn PA 7-350 (Amp)
Oppo BDP-103 (BluRay Player)
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post #2 of 82 Old 11-05-2011, 07:16 AM
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With a 5K budget you could get a complete 5.1 system. Keep shopping. Have you considered Paradigm?

Jeff
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post #3 of 82 Old 11-05-2011, 07:24 AM
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I would get either the Salk or KEF.

Dennis Murphy designed the crossover for Salk and he now has his own company - Philharmonic Audio.

The Philharmonic 1s are $1.6K/pr, PH2 are $2K, & PH3 are $3K.

http://philharmonicaudio.com/

I think DefTech sounds good too, but DefTech is not about accuracy like the Philharmonic, Salk, KEF, Revel, etc.

Why, you could get all five Philharmonic 1 speakers for $4,000.

Then add two Rythmik FV12 subs for $500 each.

http://www.rythmikaudio.com/FV12.html

Totally forget about Polk. Not in same league.
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post #4 of 82 Old 11-05-2011, 07:30 AM
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post #5 of 82 Old 11-05-2011, 08:14 AM
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Has anyone done an A/B comparison of the Philharmonic with Aerial Acoustics? I am curious how either of the Philharmonic's stack up against the Aerial CC5 for center channel performance.

David Lynch Current Equipment: Marantz AV8801, Proceed HPA3, Parasound HCA-1206, Aerial Acoustics LR5's (LCR), Aerial Acoustics LR3's (sides), RBH in-walls (rears), Seaton Submersive, Marantz VP15s1, 106" Carada BW screen, Oppo BDP-103.
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post #6 of 82 Old 11-05-2011, 08:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AcuDefTechGuy View Post

I would get either the Salk or KEF.

Dennis Murphy designed the crossover for Salk and he now has his own company - Philharmonic Audio.

The Philharmonic 1s are $1.6K/pr, PH2 are $2K, & PH3 are $3K.

http://philharmonicaudio.com/

I think DefTech sounds good too, but DefTech is not about accuracy like the Philharmonic, Salk, KEF, Revel, etc.

Why, you could get all five Philharmonic 1 speakers for $4,000.

Then add two Rythmik FV12 subs for $500 each.

http://www.rythmikaudio.com/FV12.html

Totally forget about Polk. Not in same league.

Too bad I just found this thread today, but at least I have 30 days to return the speakers I bought last night.

The ones I bought are Bowers & Wilkins CM9GB for $2,000/pair. I didn't listen to anything else besides Definitive Technology BP8040-ST's.

I bought the B&W because they were discounted so much. Did I make the right decision?

On a different note, I've never had nice/expensive speakers before. Lately I've used monoprice 12 gauge speaker wire.

Now that I have what I think are good speakers, I'd like to know if anyone has experience with hearing an improvement when switching from a monoprice or similar wire to a more expensive wire.

Thanks in advance for your help!

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Front Speakers - B&W CM9, Center - B&W CMC2, Surrounds - B&W CM5
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post #7 of 82 Old 11-05-2011, 08:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sweetmeat View Post

Now that I have what I think are good speakers, I'd like to know if anyone has experience with hearing an improvement when switching from a monoprice or similar wire to a more expensive wire.

Thanks in advance for your help!

Please don't waste your money. As long as it's not corroded, regular 12 gauge wire is plenty good.
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post #8 of 82 Old 11-05-2011, 10:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sweetmeat View Post

Too bad I just found this thread today, but at least I have 30 days to return the speakers I bought last night.

The ones I bought are Bowers & Wilkins CM9GB for $2,000/pair. I didn't listen to anything else besides Definitive Technology BP8040-ST's.

I bought the B&W because they were discounted so much. Did I make the right decision?

On a different note, I've never had nice/expensive speakers before. Lately I've used monoprice 12 gauge speaker wire.

Now that I have what I think are good speakers, I'd like to know if anyone has experience with hearing an improvement when switching from a monoprice or similar wire to a more expensive wire.

Thanks in advance for your help!

You really need to listen to as many different brands of speakers as possible.

Personally I no longer have the patience for speakers that don't measure accurately on-axis and off-axis - like B&W, Wilson Audio, Klipsch, DefTech.

Even the $25K B&W don't have a decent on-axis & off-axis FR.

Recently I emailed B&W and asked them why their $25,000 800 D can't even have a decent horizontal off-axis frequency response. I even posted the link to the Stereophile review's plots.

B&W replied and said that it looked pretty good to them!

They must be on crack because even the Infinity P362 has a much better on-axis and off-axis response than their $25,000 speakers.

Accurate speakers are like Revel, JBL, Infinity, KEF, Salk, Philharmonic, Pioneer, Focal, Thiel, PSB, Paradigm.

Monoprice wires are perfectly fine.
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post #9 of 82 Old 11-05-2011, 12:43 PM
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JTR Triple 8, three across the front places you at $3,300, buy a Seaton SubMersive, now you're at $5,300 and you'll enter the world of properly scaled dynamics for both music and HT.

The Salks are truly superb, however primarily for music. I'd not rely on them for HT. Once one encounters dynamic contrasts, and transients that aren't blunted or muted from typical hifi speakers, their reference for what's possible realistically changes.

Good luck.

btw, JTR's Captivator is quite the product as well. Mated with an EP4000, it's quite the combo.

Have fun

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post #10 of 82 Old 11-05-2011, 04:08 PM - Thread Starter
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Those Triple 8's recommend 1200 watts? I have 350 at 4 ohms with my Emotiva.

What is realistically needed to drive them properly?

And would the Triple 8's be great at music also? I am a 50-50 Music-HT guy.

Thanks

JTR Noesis 228 (LCR)
Polk Audio LSiM 703 (Surrounds)
Seaton SubMersive HP Plus and Minus (Subs)
Denon 3312 (Receiver)
Sherbourn PA 7-350 (Amp)
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post #11 of 82 Old 11-05-2011, 04:15 PM - Thread Starter
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The Philharmonic 1's are very interesting, but no seems to have heard them yet. Everything I have read about Dennis Murphy is certainly positive.

The Seaton SubMersive is a beast! I like it.

JTR Noesis 228 (LCR)
Polk Audio LSiM 703 (Surrounds)
Seaton SubMersive HP Plus and Minus (Subs)
Denon 3312 (Receiver)
Sherbourn PA 7-350 (Amp)
Oppo BDP-103 (BluRay Player)
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post #12 of 82 Old 11-05-2011, 04:21 PM
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Talk to AVS Science about Triad speakers... and look in the Triad thread. They're excellent and are dynamic for movie soundtracks, though still accurate.

I have Paradigm Studio's and really like them.

Listen up, studios! Just say "NO" to DNR and EE!!
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post #13 of 82 Old 11-05-2011, 04:24 PM
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id suggest you check out the gallo stradas. you could get 5 of the stradas for an incredible, perfectly matched system. dealers should be able to offer you some discount on the msrp of $1k per speaker. no particular suggestions on the sub as the usual suspects come into play (velodyne, paradigm, b&w, rel etc.).
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post #14 of 82 Old 11-05-2011, 04:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FOH View Post

JTR Triple 8, three across the front places you at $3,300, buy a Seaton SubMersive, now you're at $5,300 and you'll enter the world of properly scaled dynamics for both music and HT.

The Salks are truly superb, however primarily for music. I'd not rely on them for HT. Once one encounters dynamic contrasts, and transients that aren't blunted or muted from typical hifi speakers, their reference for what's possible realistically changes.

Good luck.

btw, JTR's Captivator is quite the product as well. Mated with an EP4000, it's quite the combo.

Have fun


+1 for JTR's or The Seaton Sparks. If the $5000 is truly for the front 3 I would probably go the Seaton Sparks or JTR route. Your posts conflict a bit. First one says $5000 for 5.1. Then you say you may just get front 3 and use old speakers for surrounds and also plan to upgrade subs later. So if you plan on spending lots of money on subs later I'd recommend JTR or Seaton. If your sub budget is going to be reduced because you spent so much on speakers, I think that changes the route you should go a lot. A good sub is a game changer.

Panasonic P60ST50-Yamaha RX-V467 receiver-Sony PS3-Velodyne SMS-1-Canton 430 mains, 455 center and 402 surrounds-Rythmik FV15HP subwoofer- Pro-ject Debut III turntable- I also have a pair of Mark K's DIY design, the ER18DXT's
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My humble entertainment room

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post #15 of 82 Old 11-05-2011, 04:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rangers View Post

Those Triple 8's recommend 1200 watts? I have 350 at 4 ohms with my Emotiva.

What is realistically needed to drive them properly?

And would the Triple 8's be great at music also? I am a 50-50 Music-HT guy.

Thanks

Speakers for music, may not be best for HT, however good HT speakers are good for both music and HT. Now, how much power? You could have a tremendous time with a modest receiver. The aspect about high sensitivity loudspeakers is their modest power requirements. Just because it is robust enough to handle 1200 watts, doesn't mean they need it. That's 130db,...have you ever heard 130db?

You could drive them with a Behringer A500, EP2000, EP4000 etc.., you'd be fine with nearly any amplifier with those speakers,...that's the beauty.

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(3)Seaton Cat12C up front, (4)QSC K8 sides/rears
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post #16 of 82 Old 11-05-2011, 04:47 PM - Thread Starter
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I am just looking to buy speakers right now, up to 5k. Now, after I get the speakers I might get the sub fever, I'll worry about that then.

JTR Noesis 228 (LCR)
Polk Audio LSiM 703 (Surrounds)
Seaton SubMersive HP Plus and Minus (Subs)
Denon 3312 (Receiver)
Sherbourn PA 7-350 (Amp)
Oppo BDP-103 (BluRay Player)
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post #17 of 82 Old 11-05-2011, 04:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rangers View Post

I am just looking to buy speakers right now, up to 5k. Now, after I get the speakers I might get the sub fever, I'll worry about that then.

Yes, but clarify how many. Again your posts are conflicting. Is it truly $5000 for just the front 3 or do you want 5 of them? This makes a big difference in what route you should take. Maybe I'm the only one who is confused, if so, I'm sorry.

Panasonic P60ST50-Yamaha RX-V467 receiver-Sony PS3-Velodyne SMS-1-Canton 430 mains, 455 center and 402 surrounds-Rythmik FV15HP subwoofer- Pro-ject Debut III turntable- I also have a pair of Mark K's DIY design, the ER18DXT's
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post #18 of 82 Old 11-05-2011, 06:49 PM - Thread Starter
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benclement11, if I find a front 3 that I really want and they cost 5k I will buy them. If however, I decide on a front 3 that costs less than 5k and I still have enough money left over to get the matching surrounds I will do so.

JTR Noesis 228 (LCR)
Polk Audio LSiM 703 (Surrounds)
Seaton SubMersive HP Plus and Minus (Subs)
Denon 3312 (Receiver)
Sherbourn PA 7-350 (Amp)
Oppo BDP-103 (BluRay Player)
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post #19 of 82 Old 11-05-2011, 07:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rangers View Post

benclement11, if I find a front 3 that I really want and they cost 5k I will buy them. If however, I decide on a front 3 that costs less than 5k and I still have enough money left over to get the matching surrounds I will do so.

Fair enough. But, there is a huge difference between spending $5k on the front 3 and 5K on all 5. And since you were asking for advice I thought I'd point that out. But, since you seem to have it all figured out, we should be done here. Good luck.

Panasonic P60ST50-Yamaha RX-V467 receiver-Sony PS3-Velodyne SMS-1-Canton 430 mains, 455 center and 402 surrounds-Rythmik FV15HP subwoofer- Pro-ject Debut III turntable- I also have a pair of Mark K's DIY design, the ER18DXT's
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My humble entertainment room

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post #20 of 82 Old 11-07-2011, 08:53 AM
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You're nuts not to consider Paradigm.
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post #21 of 82 Old 11-07-2011, 10:08 AM - Thread Starter
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Okay, which Paradigm?

JTR Noesis 228 (LCR)
Polk Audio LSiM 703 (Surrounds)
Seaton SubMersive HP Plus and Minus (Subs)
Denon 3312 (Receiver)
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post #22 of 82 Old 11-07-2011, 10:38 AM
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Monitor Series or Studio Series, depending on your overal budget, room space, etc.

I went with the Studio 100s, CC 690 center, Studio 20s and monitor 7 atoms HSU Sub to round it off.

I listened to the monitors and they sound very very good. So much, i added them to the rear instead of a pair of studio 10s. They blend well with the studio line.

For most, i think the Studio 100s and gigantic 690 center is overkill for most people. I like to listen to my theater content and music at ludicrous sound levels, so it works awesome for me. Studio 100s and a 690 would easily run you $5000, so stepping down to studio 60s floors with studio 20s / 10s along with a nice sub $1000 sub would net you the performance you are after.

you could audition the following:

Studio 60 floors with a 590 center
Studio 20 or 10s for front or rear (depends on 5.1 or 7.1)

Monitor 7s at a much lower price point than the studio line are another good option.

But for 5K, you could do a nice system with studio 60s and 20s
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post #23 of 82 Old 11-07-2011, 11:45 AM
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I agree with FOH's assessment, and he helped lead me to the JTR brand at the time I was choosing speakers. Several months later and I'm thrilled with them. My usage is mostly for HT, but I also sit for the occasional listening session comprised of rock, jazz, and some classical music. I don't have audiophile ears, but musical presentation is great to me and better than all else I've owned or currently own. This includes some Triad Bronze LCR speakers, but the comparison isn't fair since my HT room is acoustically treated, while the Triads reside in a less favorable space.

I drive my JTR speakers (3x Triple 8 front ported, 4x Single 8) with an Anthem MRX 500. At reference I drove the receiver into thermal protect during one battle scene in one of the Lord of the Rings films, but otherwise it is adequate amplification for this setup. I'm sure the XPA-5 would be more than up to task unless you listen above reference. I also have 2 Submersives in a pretty sealed theater room. The audio experience is vastly better than most cineplexes, to the point I just wait for action movies to come out on disc. Even Pride and Prejudice was pleasurable to watch with my wife She focused on the sappy stuff, while I sat in amazement articulately hearing every word of dialogue against the complex background of ambience, set to a great soundtrack with lots of classical music to set the mood. Any good loudspeaker should be able to accomplish this in a well treated room, but very few can present the big-boy dynamics effortlessly as well.
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post #24 of 82 Old 11-07-2011, 12:18 PM
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Ok you are shopping for nice speakers. Yea it is fun!

Have you looked into the realm of Acoustical treatments? Killing First reflection points and good bass management/eq will do good things for your overall audio sound quality.

Have Fun!
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post #25 of 82 Old 11-07-2011, 12:39 PM
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I second the Paradigm Studio's. That's what I have. Great speakers.

Listen up, studios! Just say "NO" to DNR and EE!!
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post #26 of 82 Old 11-07-2011, 02:17 PM
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$5K for front 3 try the Revel Performa F52 L/R and the C52 center. For all 5, step down to the F32 L/R and C32 center so you can get the matching surrounds. They aren't terribly efficient, but if you're not 20' from them they will do well for HT. I used to think I was 70/30 HT/Music until I purchased the F52. Now the numbers have been reversed in the very least.

Although they are great (for me) for HT at reference, music is where they truly shine. I have never heard a truly efficient speaker like Klipsch or Triads so I have no idea what they are like. Everyone I know who has heard them say the same thing. How they never liked the music I played, but they are quite enjoyable when played through the Revels and how they make listening to music more of a thing to do then just having it play in the background.
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post #27 of 82 Old 11-07-2011, 03:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdlynch View Post

Has anyone done an A/B comparison of the Philharmonic with Aerial Acoustics? I am curious how either of the Philharmonic's stack up against the Aerial CC5 for center channel performance.

The Aerial's generally have a laid back quality to them, while Dennis' Phil's will be extremely neutral, much like Salk speakers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sweetmeat View Post

Too bad I just found this thread today, but at least I have 30 days to return the speakers I bought last night.

The ones I bought are Bowers & Wilkins CM9GB for $2,000/pair. I didn't listen to anything else besides Definitive Technology BP8040-ST's.

I bought the B&W because they were discounted so much. Did I make the right decision?

On a different note, I've never had nice/expensive speakers before. Lately I've used monoprice 12 gauge speaker wire.

Now that I have what I think are good speakers, I'd like to know if anyone has experience with hearing an improvement when switching from a monoprice or similar wire to a more expensive wire.

Thanks in advance for your help!

The Phil's and Salk's will destroy the B&W's, but that's just my opinion.


Quote:
Originally Posted by FOH View Post

JTR Triple 8, three across the front places you at $3,300, buy a Seaton SubMersive, now you're at $5,300 and you'll enter the world of properly scaled dynamics for both music and HT.

The Salks are truly superb, however primarily for music. I'd not rely on them for HT. Once one encounters dynamic contrasts, and transients that aren't blunted or muted from typical hifi speakers, their reference for what's possible realistically changes.

Good luck.

btw, JTR's Captivator is quite the product as well. Mated with an EP4000, it's quite the combo.

Have fun

Yup yup - the Salk's will be great for music; better than the JTR's IMO. For HT, the JTR's will be better. It really depends on what you're wanting to achieve. At 50/50 I'd still recommend the Salk's unless the room is huge or you like to watch movies at reference level.


Quote:
Originally Posted by FOH View Post

Speakers for music, may not be best for HT, however good HT speakers are good for both music and HT.

I completely disagree, but we've been down this road before. Your statement is an opinion sir, and one I've found to be the complete opposite of my findings. Opinions are opinions, not facts. I've never heard a speaker designed for primarily HT best a speaker for music that is geared toward music (Salk, Revel, Dynaudio, Vandersteen, etc). Dynamics is important for HT, but that is just one small factor that goes into the design of a great speaker. All speakers have trade-offs (yes, ALL of them), and you simply need to find which you're willing to live with.

I see a lot of people pushing the Submersive, and while it's a good commercial subwoofer, it doesn't touch a custom built box with a single LMS5400; measurements are proof, and in my opinion it sounds much better too.

So, if you want loud and impact, go with JTR and dual LMS5400's. If you want draw dropping musical reproduction and watch movies at a reasonable level, go with Salk, Revel, Dynaudio, Evolution Acoustics, Acoustic Zen, etc, and still choose the dual LMS5400's. Either combo will be amazing, but neither combo will be the absolute best scenario for both movies and music; I doubt any single choice would be. Although, I've been told by a few AVS regulars that Geddes stuff is incredible for both; I've just never heard them so I cannot vouch for that. Still, I'd recommend taking a look at them.


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post #28 of 82 Old 11-07-2011, 03:24 PM
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Originally Posted by kmannth View Post

Ok you are shopping for nice speakers. Yea it is fun!

Have you looked into the realm of Acoustical treatments? Killing First reflection points and good bass management/eq will do good things for your overall audio sound quality.

Have Fun!

This is fantastic advice - please don't ignore it!


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post #29 of 82 Old 11-07-2011, 03:38 PM
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Room is 17 by 17 by 8

2312 cubic feet. You'll want 2 good subwoofers and your speaker choices are wide open. The only way to know is to audition. That's the unforuntate reality. Only 'you' will know what speakers drop your jaw with realism when you hear them. I've had really good listening experiences with speakers that are expensive and heard equally good quality with cheaper ones at times too. So, in my auditioning I've found price is not a guide for speakers meant for your room size. I've only found a major quality difference when it comes to speakers meant for much, much larger rooms that need high efficiency. THAT is where price seems to really separate decent from great. For a 2,300 cuft room there are a BUNCH or fantastic sounding speakers for FAR less than $5k if you keep auditioning.

Also, if you're gonna spend that much change on speakers, I recommend you take a set of speakers that are cheapies and then start testing out room treatments to improve the sound quality. If you can treat a room well enough to make a cheap set of speakers sound "good", then your room is ready to make an awesome set sound jaw dropping.
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post #30 of 82 Old 11-07-2011, 06:52 PM - Thread Starter
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Lots of good advice and opinions here, much appreciated. I am digesting it all...man, I had forgotten about room treatments, jeeeez..

I found a Paradigm dealer here, I'll check them out. The Salks and JTR's are definitely being considered. I really do like music and HT equally, I believe that is why I have been having such a hard (but really fun) time deciding.

JTR Noesis 228 (LCR)
Polk Audio LSiM 703 (Surrounds)
Seaton SubMersive HP Plus and Minus (Subs)
Denon 3312 (Receiver)
Sherbourn PA 7-350 (Amp)
Oppo BDP-103 (BluRay Player)
Sharp 80" 3D
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