Advice on speakers: B&W CM8 vs. Monitor Audio RX6 vs. PSB Image T6 - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 43 Old 12-18-2012, 05:08 PM - Thread Starter
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A week ago I bought a pair of B&W CM8 at Best Buy. They sounded great in the store paired with Marantz SR6007: very detailed at midrange, very tight bass, great highs.The problem is that they don't sound as nice with my Pioneer VSX-1020-K. Not even close! I figured I would probably need to replace my receiver too, but spending another $1200 is just too much for me now.

I found very good reviews for Monitor Audio RX-6 and PSB Image T6 but none of the local dealers carry them at this time so there's no way for me to audition them in a store- the only option is ordering online.

Can someone tell me if those two are comparable to B&W CM8 sound wise or should I just keep the B&W's until I can afford a better receiver?
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post #2 of 43 Old 12-18-2012, 09:44 PM
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While both the Monitor Audio RX-6 and PSB Image T6 are fantastic speakers I think you probably just need a decent subwoofer. The CM8s only go down to 69 Hz. Check out HSU Research, Rhythmik, and SVS for decent subwoofer options.

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post #3 of 43 Old 12-18-2012, 10:45 PM
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What makes you think the difference is because of the receiver you own?

The difference is far more likely due to your room, your speaker placement, and the room acoustics. Work on that before spending any $$ on a different receiver.

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post #4 of 43 Old 12-19-2012, 04:32 AM - Thread Starter
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I doubt it. I did run a MCACC (which by the way I find to be superior to Audyssey). Also I should say that at the Best Buy stores these speakers are usually located on a main floor, not even inside the room. I visited 4 Best buy stores and it’s the same in each one of them. They are all placed in an open space surrounded by different environment in different stores (shelves, boxes etc.) but sounding absolutely the same in each one of them.
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post #5 of 43 Old 12-19-2012, 07:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Edward V View Post

I doubt it. I did run a MCACC (which by the way I find to be superior to Audyssey).

And did the BB stores use Direct Mode and bypass all Room Correction?

I would turn MCACC off completely! Use Pure Direct Mode if 2.0 mode or Stereo mode if 2.1 mode, but bypass all room correction, all EQ/ DSP, THX, etc.
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post #6 of 43 Old 12-19-2012, 08:27 AM - Thread Starter
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I've tried that too. I played them in all the modes you’ve mentioned. As with all other speakers I owened I found that the best sound is produced when the Stereo mode is selected, no EQ, no corrections. Direct or Pure Direct modes never produced good sound on any of my speakers. 2.1 mode doesn’t sound good since my subwoofer ( Energy ESW-8) cannot produce the bass as tight and precise as CM8’s do. By the way BB has a 2.0 setup for these speakers and it never felt like lacking any bass. Their lower frequencies sound great. Tight and accurate. They won't shake your neighbor's walls but it's going to be enough for most listeners.
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post #7 of 43 Old 12-19-2012, 08:32 AM
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Originally Posted by Edward V View Post

I've tried that too. I played them in all the modes you’ve mentioned. As with all other speakers I owened I found that the best sound is produced when the Stereo mode is selected, no EQ, no corrections. Direct or Pure Direct modes never produced good sound on any of my speakers. 2.1 mode doesn’t sound good since my subwoofer ( Energy ESW-8) cannot produce the bass as tight and precise as CM8’s do. By the way BB has a 2.0 setup for these speakers and it never felt like lacking any bass. Their lower frequencies sound great. Tight and accurate. They won't shake your neighbor's walls but it's going to be enough for most listeners.

Darn, and I was so sure I was right. biggrin.gif

Well, Best Buy is great with returns. Try out that same Marantz AVR from Best Buy and see if your speakers sound just as good.
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post #8 of 43 Old 12-19-2012, 08:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Edward V View Post

I've tried that too. I played them in all the modes you’ve mentioned. As with all other speakers I owened I found that the best sound is produced when the Stereo mode is selected, no EQ, no corrections. Direct or Pure Direct modes never produced good sound on any of my speakers. 2.1 mode doesn’t sound good since my subwoofer ( Energy ESW-8) cannot produce the bass as tight and precise as CM8’s do. By the way BB has a 2.0 setup for these speakers and it never felt like lacking any bass. Their lower frequencies sound great. Tight and accurate. They won't shake your neighbor's walls but it's going to be enough for most listeners.

it would be tough to say what youre hearing. perhaps it could be that the speakers need a litle bit of time to break-in. you could put up room treatments which can be inexpensive and that could help to reduce room reflections and help things sound clearer and more detailed. It might be speakers placement. and then in the end, maybe you prefer the way the marantz sounded over the Pioneer with those speakers.

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post #9 of 43 Old 12-19-2012, 12:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Edward V View Post

A week ago I bought a pair of B&W CM8 at Best Buy. They sounded great in the store paired with Marantz SR6007: very detailed at midrange, very tight bass, great highs.The problem is that they don't sound as nice with my Pioneer VSX-1020-K. Not even close! I figured I would probably need to replace my receiver too, but spending another $1200 is just too much for me now.
I found very good reviews for Monitor Audio RX-6 and PSB Image T6 but none of the local dealers carry them at this time so there's no way for me to audition them in a store- the only option is ordering online.
Can someone tell me if those two are comparable to B&W CM8 sound wise or should I just keep the B&W's until I can afford a better receiver?

Yes, as postrokfan said, the CM8s only go down to 69Hz, which makes me suspicious of how Best Buy had them set up for audition. Are you absolutely sure they did not have a sub also working there? I don't think you can expect a whole lot of bass in most rooms from any of the three models you mentioned.

You said they didn't sound good in your room. What aspects of the sound did you feel were lacking? Bass, mids, treble? If the problem was in higher frequencies, could be room reflections, etc. If lack of bass is the culprit, probably a subwoofer is the only solution, unless you go with much larger towers.

Now, if you do want to try a much more powerful receiver, now is the time to pounce on this deal on the Onkyo TX-NR809, which is a 40 pound beast and sounds fabulous to me, and also WAY below the $1200 price you mentioned about a new receiver:

http://www.amazon.com/Onkyo-TX-NR809-Certified-7-2-Channel-Receiver/dp/B00505F01E/ref=sr_1_11?s=aht&ie=UTF8&qid=1355947756&sr=1-11

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post #10 of 43 Old 12-19-2012, 02:29 PM - Thread Starter
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They were not connected to any sub in any of the stores.
Now what bothers me is not an amount of bass but lack of details at mids (the strongest point of B&W's according to all reviews I found and according to what I've auditioned at the Best Buy). The mids are not detailed enough and not strong enough allowing the bass to overpower them.
As for the receiver: Onkyo is a nice receiver but measuring almost 8" high is unfortunately too tall to fit my cabinet (6.5"). In the past I've tried Yamaha RX-V667 and Denon AVR-1912 but didn't like any of them. Marantz gets great reviews everywhere so I figured I'll give it a try especially after auditioning them with the CM8's.
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post #11 of 43 Old 12-19-2012, 02:33 PM
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is this for movies and music or are you just listening to music?

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post #12 of 43 Old 12-19-2012, 02:43 PM
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Since the manufacturer says the CM8 are 3db down at 69 Hz, they are basically saying that they have NO BASS AT ALL. They are good speakers; no need to replace them. Just get a REAL subwoofer instead of the little thing you have now, and your problem will be solved.

Your subwoofer is not large enough, nor does it have enough power to properly complement those speakers; that is your problem. It is totally inadequate.

You need a subwoofer that has a MINIMUM of a 12-inch driver and 300 watts of RMS power (not peak).

I suggest the Klipsch RW12D, which is available for around $400.

Add that to your present speakers and you will be a happy listener (but dump the Pioneer receiver; get an Onkyo or Cambridge Audio receiver).

The Onkyo TX-SR313 is less than 6 inches tall and will work well with your setup. You can get it for around $200 at Amazon. it should sound better than the Pioneer receiver (the Class D amplifiers in the Pioneer receivers are particularly nasty-sounding IMO).
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post #13 of 43 Old 12-19-2012, 02:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Edward V View Post

They were not connected to any sub in any of the stores.
Now what bothers me is not an amount of bass but lack of details at mids (the strongest point of B&W's according to all reviews I found and according to what I've auditioned at the Best Buy). The mids are not detailed enough and not strong enough allowing the bass to overpower them.
As for the receiver: Onkyo is a nice receiver but measuring almost 8" high is unfortunately too tall to fit my cabinet (6.5"). In the past I've tried Yamaha RX-V667 and Denon AVR-1912 but didn't like any of them. Marantz gets great reviews everywhere so I figured I'll give it a try especially after auditioning them with the CM8's.

CM8 need a serious receiver. That Onkyo is LARGE for a reason. If you cabinet is too small, get a new one. Or better, put receiver outside of it, if you do not want fry it in a year or two.
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post #14 of 43 Old 12-19-2012, 02:47 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Edward V View Post

I doubt it. I did run a MCACC (which by the way I find to be superior to Audyssey). Also I should say that at the Best Buy stores these speakers are usually located on a main floor, not even inside the room. I visited 4 Best buy stores and it’s the same in each one of them. They are all placed in an open space surrounded by different environment in different stores (shelves, boxes etc.) but sounding absolutely the same in each one of them.

That's funny since MCACC doesn't eq a sub..

Quote:
Originally Posted by Edward V View Post

I've tried that too. I played them in all the modes you’ve mentioned. As with all other speakers I owened I found that the best sound is produced when the Stereo mode is selected, no EQ, no corrections. Direct or Pure Direct modes never produced good sound on any of my speakers. 2.1 mode doesn’t sound good since my subwoofer ( Energy ESW-8) cannot produce the bass as tight and precise as CM8’s do. By the way BB has a 2.0 setup for these speakers and it never felt like lacking any bass. Their lower frequencies sound great. Tight and accurate. They won't shake your neighbor's walls but it's going to be enough for most listeners.

Your joking.. So your 8" energy sub isn't working then. I just listened to the CM8's and they barely have any bass. Its nice and tight that can't go down beyond 70 HZ.. You really can't make some people up. rolleyes.gif
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post #15 of 43 Old 12-19-2012, 03:01 PM
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I found that my Denon 3312ci sounds wayyyyyy better than my previous Onkyo TX-NR609. Night and day.
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post #16 of 43 Old 12-19-2012, 03:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Edward V View Post

They were not connected to any sub in any of the stores.
Now what bothers me is not an amount of bass but lack of details at mids (the strongest point of B&W's according to all reviews I found and according to what I've auditioned at the Best Buy). The mids are not detailed enough and not strong enough allowing the bass to overpower them.
As for the receiver: Onkyo is a nice receiver but measuring almost 8" high is unfortunately too tall to fit my cabinet (6.5"). In the past I've tried Yamaha RX-V667 and Denon AVR-1912 but didn't like any of them. Marantz gets great reviews everywhere so I figured I'll give it a try especially after auditioning them with the CM8's.

The "detail" you may perceive in the mid range is a function of the tweeter. I don't really understand how they could sound so dramatically worse at home. I could see how they could sound a bit less detailed if you have a very "dead" room, but not a huge difference. Since there is the possibility, however remote, that the tweeters on your new CM8s could be defective, have you actually checked them to make sure they are working?

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post #17 of 43 Old 12-19-2012, 05:03 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by commsysman View Post

Since the manufacturer says the CM8 are 3db down at 69 Hz, they are basically saying that they have NO BASS AT ALL. They are good speakers; no need to replace them. Just get a REAL subwoofer instead of the little thing you have now, and your problem will be solved.
Your subwoofer is not large enough, nor does it have enough power to properly complement those speakers; that is your problem. It is totally inadequate.
You need a subwoofer that has a MINIMUM of a 12-inch driver and 300 watts of RMS power (not peak).
I suggest the Klipsch RW12D, which is available for around $400.
Add that to your present speakers and you will be a happy listener (but dump the Pioneer receiver; get an Onkyo or Cambridge Audio receiver).
The Onkyo TX-SR313 is less than 6 inches tall and will work well with your setup. You can get it for around $200 at Amazon. it should sound better than the Pioneer receiver (the Class D amplifiers in the Pioneer receivers are particularly nasty-sounding IMO).

There's no way to fit that huge box in my living room so it has to be small. And frankly this "little thing" shakes my neighbor's wall like a "big guy". I never had problem with the amount of bass it produces. The problem is it's not as tight and fast as CM8's. Besides, I'm not a Klipsch fan. Their bass is too muddy and heavy for me.
As for the receiver: I tried the Onkyo TX-SR309 (basically the same model, just the older one) and I absolutely hated it. It's weak, it has terrible hiss and it fails to drive 5.1 channels adequately.
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post #18 of 43 Old 12-19-2012, 05:16 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Goat1 View Post

That's funny since MCACC doesn't eq a sub.. It does
Your joking.. So your 8" energy sub isn't working then. I just listened to the CM8's and they barely have any bass. Its nice and tight that can't go down beyond 70 HZ.. "Tight" doesn't mean low. "Precise" doesn't mean low. "Fast" and Dynamic" doesn't mean low. Not every speaker rated down to 20Hz can reproduce high quality bass. MOST of the low-end speakers that rated down to 20Hz will never be able to actually go that low and even if they will it will sound terrible. You really can't make some people up. rolleyes.gif
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post #19 of 43 Old 12-19-2012, 05:17 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by mtrot View Post

The "detail" you may perceive in the mid range is a function of the tweeter. I don't really understand how they could sound so dramatically worse at home. I could see how they could sound a bit less detailed if you have a very "dead" room, but not a huge difference. Since there is the possibility, however remote, that the tweeters on your new CM8s could be defective, have you actually checked them to make sure they are working?
The tweeters are fine and highs are amazing.
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post #20 of 43 Old 12-19-2012, 05:29 PM
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MCACC does not EQ your subwoofer. Even "Advanced MCACC," found in Elite receivers, does not EQ your sub. My main AVR used to be an Elite 21TXH with adv. MCACC. Once I switched to an AVR with Audyssey MultEQ XT, my sub integrated with my mains much better, and audyssey did a great job correcting for different seating positions where bass sounded too boomy.

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post #21 of 43 Old 12-19-2012, 08:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Edward V View Post

I've tried that too. I played them in all the modes you’ve mentioned. As with all other speakers I owened I found that the best sound is produced when the Stereo mode is selected, no EQ, no corrections. Direct or Pure Direct modes never produced good sound on any of my speakers. 2.1 mode doesn’t sound good since my subwoofer ( Energy ESW-8) cannot produce the bass as tight and precise as CM8’s do. By the way BB has a 2.0 setup for these speakers and it never felt like lacking any bass. Their lower frequencies sound great. Tight and accurate. They won't shake your neighbor's walls but it's going to be enough for most listeners.

The Energy ESW-8, as you know, isn't the best subwoofer in the world but it should be adequate depending on the size of your listening space. Even this sub should produce the lower frequencies better than the CM8s. I don't doubt the CM8s are better with mid-bass which is what I think you're hearing. There's no reason your speakers shouldn't sound as you expect if the crossover is set to 80 Hz, with the lower frequencies sent to the subwoofer. With this setup, your receiver doesn't have to work as hard. There actually has been some good advice in this thread but you seem set on getting a better receiver.

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post #22 of 43 Old 12-19-2012, 09:16 PM
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For what it's worth my CM5s sounded kind of rough for the first couple weeks. I'd wait another week or two, let them break in and do some tweaking before you do anything drastic.
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post #23 of 43 Old 12-20-2012, 09:54 AM
 
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I think Edward might be beginning his quest into audio. If he doesn't know what the difference is between audyssey and MCACC is that tells a lot. Edward,go buy yourself an Onkyo 818 like mine,Run Audyssey XT32 and tell me how that works out. XT32 will integrate your speakers together like butter! And yes,he is hearing the mids,I've listened to the CM8's several times and they have little bass. With a sub it blended great and sounded really nice..
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post #24 of 43 Old 12-20-2012, 10:58 AM
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Any pics of the room? What's the size? How close are they to the wall? Are you sure you don't have some sort of "bass/treble" setting off of 0? Pure Direct/Direct or whatever Pio calls it should sound the best and send the most power to them if I remember correctly. It shuts down everything but those channels (video, etc).

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post #25 of 43 Old 12-20-2012, 02:08 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Goat1 View Post

I think Edward might be beginning his quest into audio. If he doesn't know what the difference is between audyssey and MCACC is that tells a lot. I am a beginner but your condescending attitude won’t help me in my quest.

Edward,go buy yourself an Onkyo 818 like mine,Run Audyssey XT32 and tell me how that works out.You go buy yourself a textbook of reading comprehension-that my help you to address the real topic of this discussion as it appears in a title instead of mocking people.
XT32 will integrate your speakers together like butter! And yes,he is hearing the mids,I've listened to the CM8's several times and they have little bass. With a sub it blended great and sounded really nice..
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post #26 of 43 Old 12-20-2012, 02:14 PM - Thread Starter
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I appreciate everyone's input , but can someone address the topic of this discussion? Is there someone who can share his/her experience from listening to those speakers and compare between them?
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post #27 of 43 Old 12-20-2012, 02:14 PM - Thread Starter
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I appreciate everyone's input , but can someone address the topic of this discussion? Is there someone who can share his/her experience from listening to those speakers and compare between them?
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Originally Posted by Edward V View Post

I doubt it. I did run a MCACC (which by the way I find to be superior to Audyssey). Also I should say that at the Best Buy stores these speakers are usually located on a main floor, not even inside the room. I visited 4 Best buy stores and it’s the same in each one of them. They are all placed in an open space surrounded by different environment in different stores (shelves, boxes etc.) but sounding absolutely the same in each one of them.

How do you know this? Also,your hearing tight mids,those little 5" woofers aren't going to pound out any meaningful bass. The CM8's really need a sub to fill in the lower end. The Aperion Grand Verus's pound with tons of bass,but I still cross them over at about 80hz and use my sub,it just sounds a lot more natural and you can't locate the bass. Sounds way cleaner..
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post #29 of 43 Old 12-20-2012, 03:56 PM
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Hey Edward - what's your budget? Are you definitely set on those brands or are you open to other suggestions?

Check out my WAF approved living room theater

http://www.avsforum.com/t/1526916/my...-1-living-room
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post #30 of 43 Old 12-20-2012, 04:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Edward V View Post

I doubt it. I did run a MCACC (which by the way I find to be superior to Audyssey). Also I should say that at the Best Buy stores these speakers are usually located on a main floor, not even inside the room. I visited 4 Best buy stores and it’s the same in each one of them. They are all placed in an open space surrounded by different environment in different stores (shelves, boxes etc.) but sounding absolutely the same in each one of them.

Your response suggests that it is possibly an issue with room acoustics.

Having speakers placed in an open space surrounded by shelves and boxes is actually a superior room configuration to what most of us have at home.

Is one of your speakers closer to the side wall than the other?
How much space is there between the rear of the speaker and the wall?
What's the length of the room the speaker is firing into?
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