Best LCR "bookshelf" sized speakers for under $5k? - AVS Forum
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Speakers > Best LCR "bookshelf" sized speakers for under $5k?
oapy123's Avatar oapy123 12:09 PM 01-17-2013
Looking for some bookshelf sized speakers for front left and front right, dimensions no larger than about 18" H x 14" W. Black or white color.


Also need a matching center channel
- can be a little larger than L/R
- Must be able to wall-mount the center channel somehow, or maybe put it on a discrete stand
- Depth not really a factor as it will be mounted inside of a custom bookshelf above a tv

All three will be powered by the receiver, which is TBD. However it will be high end and probably be capable of at least 100w per channel.

Ryder125's Avatar Ryder125 02:44 PM 01-17-2013
Ascend Sierra-1 NrT LCR and buy an Anthem MRX-700 for your avr and you'll have about a $1000 for a sub
commsysman's Avatar commsysman 02:53 PM 01-17-2013
If, as you say, it is to be mounted IN a bookshelf, that means that rear-ported speakers are out of the question.

You need front-ported ( or non-ported) speakers.

I suggest that you consider the Monitor Audio Silver RX-2** speakers, which are unusual in that they use an 8-inch main driver, which gives exceptional full-range performance for a speaker less than 15" tall; they are rated to go down to 40 Hz. Cost is around $900 per pair, and they ARE front-ported.

The matching Silver RX Center is $650. It sounds like your best mounting option is to cut a wood shelf to the size of the speaker base and mount it to the wall with metal L-brackets, which if attached under the shelf and behind the speaker will be invisible. Its sound quality is better than some receivers selling for twice as much.

The center speaker is unported, so it can be mounted very close to the wall.

My first choice for the receiver would be the Cambridge Audio 551R. It is the Rolls-Royce of receivers and only $1300. It has plenty of power to run those speakers (or almost any speakers, for that matter). I suggest that you read the article on it in Home Theater.

The second choice would be the Denon 3312.

** correction; the BX-2 is the front-ported speaker, not the RX-2; my mistake. It has a 6.5-inch main driver and is less expensive.
Ryder125's Avatar Ryder125 03:11 PM 01-17-2013
Denon with his price range? Anthem >>>> Denon

Denon is good if you want something cheap but if you can go around $1500-$2000 no way would I go with Denon.
commsysman's Avatar commsysman 03:13 PM 01-17-2013
Why would anyone want to take a speaker designed to be a rear-ported speaker, and then plug the ports. That sounds really stupid to me.

That is NOT going to allow the speaker to perform properly. You want a speaker DESIGNED as a front-ported speaker, not some mickey-mouse work-around to make a square peg fit in a round hole.

Also; anyone who wants to fill a sizeable room with sound needs the volume of sound that the 8-inch driver of the Monitor Audio RX-2 can deliver, AND you want front speakers that can go down to at least 50 Hz. System performance is very much impaired if the subwoofer is expected to be the only driver operating below 80 Hz. The sub should only be operating up to 40 or 50 Hz.

My apologies to the Ascend sales department and their reps, but facts are facts.
commsysman's Avatar commsysman 03:16 PM 01-17-2013
Well, the Anthem MRX 700 was tested by Home Theater and could only deliver 44 watts per channel with all channels driven. That is a $2000 receiver, and it cant equal the power output of a Denon costing one-third as much money in actual tests. That kind of performance is absolutely pathetic, and makes me wonder why ANYONE would consider an Anthem receiver. I wouldn't go near one with a 10-foot pole if they were giving them away!!!

Actual testing by impartial experts PROVES that Anthem receivers have very poor peformance compared to much less-expensive Denon receivers. Facts are facts!!!

Read the Home Theater reviews if you want the facts. They nail the phonies, like Anthem, to the wall...and pull down their pants.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryder125 View Post

Denon with his price range? Anthem >>>> Denon

Denon is good if you want something cheap but if you can go around $1500-$2000 no way would I go with Denon.

The Cambridge 551R is the best-sounding by far. HomeTheater says so, and I say so
cschang's Avatar cschang 03:45 PM 01-17-2013
Quote:
Originally Posted by commsysman View Post

Why would anyone want to take a speaker designed to be a rear-ported speaker, and then plug the ports. That sounds really stupid to me.

That is NOT going to allow the speaker to perform properly. You want a speaker DESIGNED as a front-ported speaker!!

Also; anyone who wants to fill a sizeable room with sound needs the volume of sound that the 8-inch driver of the Monitor Audio RX-2 can deliver, AND you want front speakers that can go down to at least 50 Hz. System performance is very much impaired if the subwoofer is expected to be the only driver operating below 80 Hz. The sub should only be operating up to 40 or 50 Hz.

My apologies to the Ascend sales department and their reps, but facts are facts.
You should read what the Q-Plugs do.

They do not fully block the port. Plug "B" changes the diameter and output of the port...it does not plug it.

Plug "A" essentially changes the cabinet into an aperiodic enclosure.
commsysman's Avatar commsysman 03:50 PM 01-17-2013
And how does this make this speaker better for a recessed shelf than a front-ported speaker?

Answer: IT DOES NOT!!!

You are trying to minimize a problem; best to get a speaker that does not have a problem that needs fixing.
Ryder125's Avatar Ryder125 03:51 PM 01-17-2013
You know home theater .com rated the anthem 700 as their top pick avr?.... I've yet to read a review that was bad on it.
commsysman's Avatar commsysman 03:54 PM 01-17-2013
44 watts per channel from a $2000 receiver??

I guess YOU can ignore that FACT since you are obviously a big Anthem fan (and no doubt an owner); no one else is going to.

Facts are facts, no matter how much you try to squirm around them.

If you want to read a superlative review, READ the statements Home Theater made about the Cambridge 551R.:

" A true music lover's receiver "

" If you want a closer relationship with music and movies...this AVR will take you to the heights "

It kind of sounds like they don't just like it...they love it!



Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryder125 View Post

You know home theater .com rated the anthem 700 as their top pick avr?.... I've yet to read a review that was bad on it.

Find some statements they made about the Anthem that compare to the ones above....
Ryder125's Avatar Ryder125 04:00 PM 01-17-2013
countryman don't you own a audio store or have their best interest in one? I thought I remember you getting called out for it as you only recommend their products.

As for the Sierras having a hard time close to the wall, right now I have my Sierra-1 center close to the wall and in a in closed space and it doesn't seem to have any problems.

I'm in the market for a new avr and the anthem is the best I heard and it doesn't seem short on power at all.
Ryder125's Avatar Ryder125 04:01 PM 01-17-2013
I don't own an Anthem... Yet but I haven't heard anything better than it and its 90wats per 5 channels
madhuski's Avatar madhuski 04:05 PM 01-17-2013
1) the hometheatermag measurements of the mrx 700 are known to be flawed. Don't you think it's odd it measures considerably less than their entry level mrx 300?

2) sound and vision measures the mrx 700 at 71 watts with all channels driven.

3) the Cambridge, while probably a find receiver, only measures 61 watts with all 7 channels driven

4) I myself am a pioneer elite fan. In the end, their all probably fine receivers
cschang's Avatar cschang 04:08 PM 01-17-2013
Quote:
Originally Posted by commsysman View Post

And how does this make this speaker better for a recessed shelf than a front-ported speaker?

Answer: IT DOES NOT!!!

You are trying to minimize a problem; best to get a speaker that does not have a problem that needs fixing.
Do you know how an aperiodic enclosure works? In that example, a front ported speaker is no better or worse.
commsysman's Avatar commsysman 04:09 PM 01-17-2013
I am a retired college professor, and have NEVER had any commercial relationship with ANY store of ANY kind. Any suggestion to the contrary is totally false and has no basis in fact. The whole thing is also rather ludicrous. Does anyone seriously think that an on-line retailer is going to pay someone to say something good about them here? I have never heard of such a thing existing. It is fantastic to suggest such a thing.

All of my employment has been with aerospace electronics companies and colleges and universities. I have been retired for nine years.

A couple of people repeatedly accused me of favoring a company 2000 miles from here that I bought some gear from. I didn't know that it was a crime to mention that a company dealt with me fairly, but I guess that was their claim. Actually, I personally think their motives were contrived and malicious, but let's not go there. That was a long time ago and not worth revisiting.

I see other people making similar statements about company A or B, so I don't know why mine were different, but in any case I haven't mentioned that company in over a year, either directly or indirectly.. I wanted to make sure that kind of stupidity was stopped in its tracks.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryder125 View Post

countryman don't you own a audio store or have their best interest in one? I thought I remember you getting called out for it as you only recommend their products.

As for the Sierras having a hard time close to the wall, right now I have my Sierra-1 center close to the wall and in a in closed space and it doesn't seem to have any problems.

I'm in the market for a new avr and the anthem is the best I heard and it doesn't seem short on power at all.

gtpsuper24's Avatar gtpsuper24 04:12 PM 01-17-2013
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryder125 View Post

countryman don't you own a audio store or have their best interest in one? I thought I remember you getting called out for it as you only recommend their products.

As for the Sierras having a hard time close to the wall, right now I have my Sierra-1 center close to the wall and in a in closed space and it doesn't seem to have any problems.

I'm in the market for a new avr and the anthem is the best I heard and it doesn't seem short on power at all.

That was Audio Advisor. He use to (well still does) have copy paste answers ready and do the exact same in every thread he responses too.

Something like (Cambridge Audio is the best receiver out there PERIOD, Hometheater Mag said so) Copy Paste Copy Paste Copy Paste, word for word. He also was called about by Dave from Ascend for lying about Ascend speakers because he just can't get over the fact theres other speakers out there besides MA, Gallo and KEF. So he makes up lies and BS to try and get the OP or Poster to go with his prefered speakers over everything else.

He calls out other peoples opinions (whos are based in reality and the MODERN world) as NUTS or CRAZY NON SENSE.

Just pretend he isn't even here.
gtpsuper24's Avatar gtpsuper24 04:15 PM 01-17-2013
Quote:
Originally Posted by cschang View Post

Do you know how an aperiodic enclosure works? In that example, a front ported speaker is no better or worse.

He also doesn't understand that just because its front ported doesn't mean it will work in a bookshelf enclosure. Has no idea about Boundry issues with some speakers, or that you can plug the port on a speaker to allow a more gradual roll off of the lower freqs and some claim it improves the midrange resolution as well as cut down on excessive excursion.
cschang's Avatar cschang 04:20 PM 01-17-2013
Quote:
Originally Posted by gtpsuper24 View Post

Has no idea about Boundry issues with some speakers, or that you can plug the port on a speaker to allow a more gradual roll off of the lower freqs and some claim it improves the midrange resolution as well as cut down on excessive excursion.
Well...plugging a port does allow for gradual rolloff, but at the expense of extension.

Also, just plugging a port can cause problems. Here is DaveF from Ascend's explanation:

"Simply plugging the port of a properly designed ported loudspeaker is generally a bad idea. A woofer that is designed for a ported enclosure will act differently when installed in a sealed enclosure. The compliance of the woofer is not designed to see the internal pressures created by a sealed enclosure and the speaker then becomes overdamped, subjecting the woofer to greater excursions (often exceeding its mechanical limits) and pre-mature bass roll-off. You can also end up with a higher than normal impedance peak at system resonance."
commsysman's Avatar commsysman 04:31 PM 01-17-2013
I rest my case.

I couldn't have said it better, and it comes dirctly from Ascend themselves...ROFL....ROFL!!!!

This PROVES that the best choice is either a front-ported or properly-designed sealed enclosure, like I said in my first post here. It is so obvious that ANY speaker designer will confirm it; as the gentleman has done here. The fact that anyone would argue against it amazes me.

All else is "sound and fury, signifying NOTHING..."


Quote:
Originally Posted by cschang View Post

Well...plugging a port does allow for gradual rolloff, but at the expense of extension.

Also, just plugging a port can cause problems. Here is DaveF from Ascend's explanation:

"Simply plugging the port of a properly designed ported loudspeaker is generally a bad idea. A woofer that is designed for a ported enclosure will act differently when installed in a sealed enclosure. The compliance of the woofer is not designed to see the internal pressures created by a sealed enclosure and the speaker then becomes overdamped, subjecting the woofer to greater excursions (often exceeding its mechanical limits) and pre-mature bass roll-off. You can also end up with a higher than normal impedance peak at system resonance."

beaveav's Avatar beaveav 04:55 PM 01-17-2013
Quote:
Originally Posted by commsysman View Post


I suggest that you consider the Monitor Audio Silver RX-2 speakers, which are unusual in that they use an 8-inch main driver, which gives exceptional full-range performance for a speaker less than 15" tall; they are rated to go down to 40 Hz. Cost is around $900 per pair, and they ARE front-ported.
....

Hey professor, you sure about the RX2 speakers being front ported??

Perhaps you're confusing them with the BX series.
beaveav's Avatar beaveav 04:58 PM 01-17-2013
From wikipedia:
"In the United States and Canada the title of professor is granted to most scholars with Doctorate degrees (typically Ph.D.s) who teach in two- and four-year colleges and universities, and is used in the titles assistant professor and associate professor, which are not considered professor-level positions elsewhere, as well as for full professors."

commsysman, where did you get your PhD?

I have had co-workers who taught electronics classes at a local community college. They did not refer to themselves as "professors." rolleyes.gif
commsysman's Avatar commsysman 05:00 PM 01-17-2013
You are absolutely right, beav.

I confused the two. I thought it was the other way round.

The BX-2 is the front-ported model and the RX-2 is a rear-ported bass-reflex.

I somehow reversed them in my memory bank; mea culpa.
commsysman's Avatar commsysman 05:13 PM 01-17-2013
At my college, which is a community college, the college adopted the following official titles in 1992:

PROFESSOR; for all tenured faculty with a Master's degree or higher and 8 years of tenure or more. The college conferred the title of Professor on me on this basis. No one asked me if I deserved it or wanted it; it was done by the Board of Trustees, and the college printed my business cards accordingly. It was my official title, and that was that.

Assistant Professor; for tenured faculty with less seniority or standing.

Lecturer; other full-time or part-time faculty (non-tenured),

_______________________________________________________________________________________________
Every college or university has the power to confer titles as they see fit; there are no universal standards, as you seem to infer. Wikipedia is often imprecise or wrong in such matters (and in any case, they are making very general statements).

In some universities I have attended or been affiliated with, the decision to grant a full professorship was not always dependent on a doctorate; in some disciplines or departments it was pretty much required, but not in others. A committee usually decided on each faculty member on his or her individual merit, and many factors were considered.

I have no PhD; only a Master's degree and other post-graduate work. I do not normally use the title "professor", or any other title, but my TITLE was Professor at the college. Titles of all sorts do not concern me much but that IS how I was officially designated and called at the college, so it is quite appropriate that I refer to myself in that manner should I wish to (and sometimes you may even get better service on cruises...lol).

Quote:
Originally Posted by beaveav View Post

From wikipedia:
"In the United States and Canada the title of professor is granted to most scholars with Doctorate degrees (typically Ph.D.s) who teach in two- and four-year colleges and universities, and is used in the titles assistant professor and associate professor, which are not considered professor-level positions elsewhere, as well as for full professors."

commsysman, where did you get your PhD?

I have had co-workers who taught electronics classes at a local community college. They did not refer to themselves as "professors." rolleyes.gif

Bytehoven's Avatar Bytehoven 05:23 PM 01-17-2013
I just built a new 16' x 24' video production stage/theater fitted with (7) JBL Control 5 monitors powered by a Yamaha 2020 and a BIC PL-200 sub.

The JBL Control 5 monitors are an older, front ported design with a very flat, Yamaha NS-10M type response, which has proved perfect for my studio use. All of the enclosures are located near a barrier, so porting was real concern as far as any unwanted bass reinforcement. Frankly, I had no option but to find a front ported or non-ported speaker solution and this JBL setup is proving to be every bit as good as the more expensive Blue Sky alternative I almost bought instead.

I am crossing over at the 80hz Dolby spec and the JBL are very flat down to about 50hz and roll off toward 20hz. The enclosures measure 15"x10"x10" and I was able to use/adapt some old Paradigm speaker mounts to hang these babies.

Blocking ports is not an option unless the enclosure is designed for defeating the ports.

I would recommend these JBLs to anyone who needs a passive, front ported design enclosure.

http://www.jblpro.com/catalog/general/ProductFamily.aspx?FId=67&MId=5


cschang's Avatar cschang 05:44 PM 01-17-2013
Quote:
Originally Posted by commsysman View Post

I rest my case.

I couldn't have said it better, and it comes dirctly from Ascend themselves...ROFL....ROFL!!!!

This PROVES that the best choice is either a front-ported or properly-designed sealed enclosure, like I said in my first post here. It is so obvious that ANY speaker designer will confirm it; as the gentleman has done here. The fact that anyone would argue against it amazes me.

All else is "sound and fury, signifying NOTHING..."
Like I said...the Ascend solution is not plugging the port...it is an aperiodic enclosure.

More from DaveF from Ascend: "The solution was to transform the Sierra-1 into an aperiodic enclosure, an enclosure that allows a specific amount of pressure to be released through the cabinet. This allows precise control of woofer damping resulting in improved bass response compared to simply sealing the port while also lowering the high impedance peak."
jbrown15's Avatar jbrown15 05:52 PM 01-17-2013
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryder125 View Post

You know home theater .com rated the anthem 700 as their top pick avr?.... I've yet to read a review that was bad on it.

Maybe you should go over to the MRX official thread and read threw the entire thing. There's plenty of examples of guys having known issues with their MRX receivers. I was all set on getting one earlier this year. Now I won't go near one.
commsysman's Avatar commsysman 06:00 PM 01-17-2013
When someone embraces a religion, you can't dissuade them with facts, no matter how many you have or how persuasive they are to most people.

To an Anthem fan, there is simply nothing better, and that is that. I might want to feel that way too, if I had paid $2000 for a receiver and the facts were saying its quality and design were highly suspect. But maybe they cry when they are alone...lol.

It appears that not all owners are fans.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jbrown15 View Post

Maybe you should go over to the MRX official thread and read threw the entire thing. There's plenty of examples of guys having known issues with their MRX receivers. I was all set on getting one earlier this year. Now I won't go near one.

commsysman's Avatar commsysman 06:11 PM 01-17-2013
Maybe you should check out the thread where the Anthem OWNERS tell about all of their problems; THAT will burn your ears...lol


Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryder125 View Post

You know home theater .com rated the anthem 700 as their top pick avr?.... I've yet to read a review that was bad on it.

Ryder125's Avatar Ryder125 06:23 PM 01-17-2013
Anthem had a filmware update that fixed these issues. Anyways most avr seem to have problems, Anthem seemed to fixed it now. The Anthem I was playing around wasn't having any issues.
Ryder125's Avatar Ryder125 06:25 PM 01-17-2013
Commysman you burn my ears enough, I don't need more of it, but I bet if your business sold anthem you'd be singing a different tune wink.gif
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