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post #1 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 09:54 AM - Thread Starter
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I feel like I should preface this post with an apology. I'm a long time lurker, but just recently had a reason to sign up and post! I'm sure you all get 100 threads a week asking for recommendations...

I have done some research (on AVS and other places) however, not everybody has the same parameters (room size, budget, uses, etc)... so I'll give you my situation, and hopefully some of you will be kind enough to chime in!

I'm finishing my basement (no sheetrock up yet) and have budgeted $2,500 total (speakers, receiver, speaker wire, etc) for a surround sound system.

The full basement area is about 18' x 25'. I'm not putting up any walls, but about half of the room will be used for pool / ping pong, the other half is for entertainment.

Main use will be in this order:
Video Games - 45%
Watching Movies - 25%
Watching TV - 15%
Listening to Music - 15%

I'm pretty green to the AV world - mostly used to Home Theater in a Box set-ups.

Based SOLELY on a recommendation, my friend suggested the Definitive Technologies BP-8020ST System with a Pioneer Elite receiver if I could find a good deal on one.

I'm looking for help in how to best spend my $2,500. Don't want to pay for features / products that wouldn't be relevant for my situation.

What specs / features should I be most interested in...understanding its not all about watts.

Also - if anybody has any neat ideas about how to mount / place the speakers before I finish up the electrical / sheetrock in the basement, feel free to share!

Thanks in advance!

Mods - feel free to move this thread if I have placed it in the wrong section.
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post #2 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 10:04 AM
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At that price (and I am biased) I would go with a klipsch rf-82 ii for towers, rc-62 ii for center, and rs-52 for surrounds. Very full sound. But I would go listen to them somewhere first.

I have a denon 2113 receiver but I don't know much about them and can't help you much. I got mine for a very good deal. Then you could get a rythmik lv12r to finish out the system. Altogether, if you get the same prices I did, that will cost you about $2700. If that goes over too much, you could wait for the klipsch rw-12d to go on sale and that would knock $300 off the total. You could always pick up a second one later too.

- Klipsch RF-82 ii, RC-62 ii, RS-52 ii
- Klipsch RW-12D
- Sony HW50es
- Firehawk G3
- Denon 2113
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post #3 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 10:06 AM
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BTW many people will disagree with me. I would think most people here would tell you to go with the HSU value package because the subwoofer is awesome and they are probably right. I just know that for my use I wanted towers and I love the klipsch setup.

Others will recommend the ascend acoustics package.

$2500 is a good price point to get a really great setup. I would spend some time listening to some speakers to identify the sounds you like. Many people think klipsch are too sharp and lead to ear fatigue. However I love the clarity in the high end, especially for movies.

- Klipsch RF-82 ii, RC-62 ii, RS-52 ii
- Klipsch RW-12D
- Sony HW50es
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- Denon 2113
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post #4 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 10:07 AM
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Okay so if Video games and movies are your primary actions the two most important aspects are the subwoofer and the center channel. SVS, HSU, and Rhythmik are all ID subwoofer brands that give good bang for your buck.

Speaker wise is all up to you. You may like the bright and loud Klipsch speakers or you may like a more subdued sound from a soft dome.
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post #5 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 10:20 AM
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Since you mostly watch movies/tv and play games, you probably want something that is more forward sounding and plays loud. I would personally base the decision of your setup based on how good the center channel is. Ideally you want a center channel where the tweeter and mid are stacked vertically for better dispersion. Paradigm has slightly forward sound and also has a center with the aforementioned design, so would fit well here. Check out the Paradigm SE series.

Paradigm SE3 x2 ~$900
Paradigm SE center ~$400
Paradigm SE1 x2 $500
SVS SB1000 $450 b-stock
Denon 3311ci refurb from accessories4less $500

This is just one suggestion (and puts you over budget by $200) but you're getting a lot of sound for the money, and the sound is refined enough that you won't have upgraditis right away.

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post #6 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 10:38 AM - Thread Starter
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Wow...I appreciate the quick replies and suggestions!

I'm certainly not opposed to doing my own research...i just need to be pointed in the right direction.

Knowing that for my uses, the center channel and sub are pretty important is the type of info I'm looking for.

Obviously, I'd like to stay in or under budget, but if it makes alot of sense to spend the extra couple hundred dollars...I'm open to it.

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post #7 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 10:42 AM - Thread Starter
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My own tastes (esp for gaming) is clear, crisp, and loud.

With some heavy hitting base.

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post #8 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 10:46 AM
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The problem with klipsch is that you will hate or love then, if you are very sensitive to bright or in your face sound, you will get ear fatigue in seconds specially if you will be seating close to the speakers, you will be using only half of the room so I don't think klipsch is strictly necessary.

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post #9 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 10:58 AM
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Here is a package that will give you killer bass and some great speakers: Hsu Hybrid 15. That sub is a monster. Get the 5.1 package of that and add a Denon AVR-X2000, and you are under-budget. If you need to mount the speakers, the best affordable speaker mount by far are these Videosecu side-clamping mounts. Also, don't go buying expensive monster speaker cable, just get your speaker cable and HDMI cable from monoprice. That will all give you a killer system right at your budget.
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post #10 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 01:15 PM - Thread Starter
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What about the DefTech system that was suggested to me?

Actually, I found the BP-8040ST system (2 ea. BP-8040ST, 1 each CS-8040HD and 2 each SR-8040BP) for around $2,100 on designeraudiovideo.com.

Any experience with these speakers (or with this online retailer)?

How would this system compare to those previously mentioned? Also - how do the integrated subs compare to stand-alone?
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post #11 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 01:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Menasor View Post

Since you mostly watch movies/tv and play games, you probably want something that is more forward sounding and plays loud. I would personally base the decision of your setup based on how good the center channel is. Ideally you want a center channel where the tweeter and mid are stacked vertically for better dispersion. Paradigm has slightly forward sound and also has a center with the aforementioned design, so would fit well here. Check out the Paradigm SE series.

Paradigm SE3 x2 ~$900
Paradigm SE center ~$400
Paradigm SE1 x2 $500
SVS SB1000 $450 b-stock
Denon 3311ci refurb from accessories4less $500

This is just one suggestion (and puts you over budget by $200) but you're getting a lot of sound for the money, and the sound is refined enough that you won't have upgraditis right away.

I wouldn't recommend accessories4less.

They forced me to pay shipping back on a defective item. Total BS.

- Klipsch RF-82 ii, RC-62 ii, RS-52 ii
- Klipsch RW-12D
- Sony HW50es
- Firehawk G3
- Denon 2113
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post #12 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 01:34 PM
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Originally Posted by losservatore View Post

The problem with klipsch is that you will hate or love then, if you are very sensitive to bright or in your face sound, you will get ear fatigue in seconds specially if you will be seating close to the speakers, you will be using only half of the room so I don't think klipsch is strictly necessary.

The newer klipsch speakers aren't nearly as harsh as the old ones. And also, this has to be the most overblown worry ever.

It's not like the speakers are shrill or something. They sound fantastic, though they are more forward than other brands. Its what attracted me to them. The center channel is incredible and just having the front 3 up without putting up the surrounds it fills up my whole space (2700 cu ft).

I know that some people prefer a softer sound, but it's not like your ears will start bleeding as soon as you start listening.
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- Klipsch RF-82 ii, RC-62 ii, RS-52 ii
- Klipsch RW-12D
- Sony HW50es
- Firehawk G3
- Denon 2113
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post #13 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 02:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TJames03 View Post

What about the DefTech system that was suggested to me?

Actually, I found the BP-8040ST system (2 ea. BP-8040ST, 1 each CS-8040HD and 2 each SR-8040BP) for around $2,100 on designeraudiovideo.com.

Any experience with these speakers (or with this online retailer)?

How would this system compare to those previously mentioned? Also - how do the integrated subs compare to stand-alone?

Integrated subs are generally a lot worse. Those towers are basically bookshelf speakers stacked on top of some so-so subwoofers. They probably don't sound awful, but they are no substitute for a serious subwoofer. One reason for this is placement. The best place in a room for bass to eminate in a sound system is often not also the best place for mids and treble. By freeing up the sub you can get a far more optimal bass response. Also, do to the size constriction of being integrated into a tower speaker, the subs just don't have much output or extension capability. By giving the drivers their own optimized cabinet, you give them an ideal 'workspace' and so gain better sound quality, higher output, and deeper bass extension.
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post #14 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 02:44 PM
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I'd break up so that you spend at least $1000 (+- a couple of hundred) on the sub(s), $1000 on the speakers and $500 or less on the AVR.

Klipsch RF-62II, RC-500, RS-400, SVS PC12+,
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post #15 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 02:54 PM
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The best thing that you can do is verify manufacturer specs. If you look up reviews for products you will see that many stats are optimistic at best. Most comonly overstated stats are sensitivity and bass extension. The frequency response that is listed can be very optimistic because it is not always measured at 1 watt or the other extreme is not listing a variance (ie. +/-3db).

As much as people like to move away from large boxes for subwoofers they have he hardest job and the larger the subwoofer he easier its job becomes which leads to it being able to do more. In other terms larger subs can usually handle more power and play louder, play lower frequencies with more authority all while reducing the various types of distortion.
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post #16 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 02:56 PM
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Originally Posted by baloo_btru View Post

I wouldn't recommend accessories4less.

They forced me to pay shipping back on a defective item. Total BS.

Wow really? That sucks. I've purchased from there before as well as a few friends of mine without issue. I guess it's ok until something goes wrong

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post #17 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 03:01 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by shadyJ View Post

Integrated subs are generally a lot worse. Those towers are basically bookshelf speakers stacked on top of some so-so subwoofers. They probably don't sound awful, but they are no substitute for a serious subwoofer. One reason for this is placement. The best place in a room for bass to eminate in a sound system is often not also the best place for mids and treble. By freeing up the sub you can get a far more optimal bass response. Also, do to the size constriction of being integrated into a tower speaker, the subs just don't have much output or extension capability. By giving the drivers their own optimized cabinet, you give them an ideal 'workspace' and so gain better sound quality, higher output, and deeper bass extension.

Yea - that is kinda what I was assuming... until I was reading the reviews over on the deftech owners thread. Seems like a lot of happy people with the 8060 fronts.

What you say about placement though makes a lot of sense.
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post #18 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 03:08 PM
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Originally Posted by TVMAN1991 View Post

Okay so if Video games and movies are your primary actions the two most important aspects are the subwoofer and the center channel. SVS, HSU, and Rhythmik are all ID subwoofer brands that give good bang for your buck.

Speaker wise is all up to you. You may like the bright and loud Klipsch speakers or you may like a more subdued sound from a soft dome.

I think that surround sound is just as important as the center. For example....Playing call of duty, you can hear what direction people are shooting at you from.

I do agree not to cheap out on the sub. ID companies are great to go with and if you are good at carpentry you could diy a sub that will blow ID companies out the water.


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post #19 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 05:06 PM
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I'm not sure why folks have a bias against Klipsch. I respect the opinions of folks who don't like Klipsch though, but if they listened to a properly set up RF-7 or RF-83 reference system, they might be very surprised smile.gif

I actually measured my Klipsch speakers and the response looked pretty flat (I didn't have any room treatments up either). All I hear when I listen to my Klispch speakers is crystal clear and very accurate sound. Drums actually sound like drums. Vocals sound great too. I definitely wouldn't buy the el cheapo Klispch speakers (or any of the speakers) at Best Buy. The RF-82's are much nicer and sound great for the money (especially if you find them at a half off sale or used).

Even better, buy the RF-83's used from craigslist. You can periodically pick up a used set for $900-$1000, and they are made in Hope, Arkansas (unlike the RF-82's). If you ever need to resale a used set of RF-83's, you won't lose any money either. You can also find RF-82's used on craigslist, and if you buy right, you might make money if you ever sell them! RF-7's are another good option, along with the RC-64 center and RS-62 side speakers. I've had my RF-83's for five years now and still love them. In fact, I've never heard of a dissatisfied RF-83 owner on the forums, but I don't read here much anymore.

Paradigm is nice too, but I wouldn't pay their outrageous fixed dealer pricing. I say buy higher end used Klipsch speakers (not the crap at BB), or maybe Paradigm if they are 1/3 of original retail. Google on how to setup a craigslist alerts too, so you don't miss out on any steals...

Whatever sub you buy, try to buy two. There will be a huge difference! Buying used will also help you stretch your sub budget, but obviously requires that you have cash in hand. I bought a used second Klispch RT-12d sub from ebay and I couldn't believe how much it improved the room's nodes. Sure the sub had a few scratches, but it improved my system's sound so much that I didn't care. The response actually flattened out a lot (with no DSP) and this was verified using RoomEQ and a calibrated USB mic.

For the AVR, I'd start with an Onkyo TX-NR905, assuming you don't want 3D (HDMI 1.4). These can be had on the cheap, but are made in Japan and have HDMI 1.3. The thing weighs over 50 lbs too, so if you can pick up a used one for $500, I think you'll be getting a great deal. The TX-NR906 is another model to look for when shopping for used gear. I think it has a newer version of Audyssey which may be worth an extra $100.

Definitely, I wouldn't buy any new high-end gear unless you have money to burn. I mean, look at what some of the used AVR/preamp's sell for on ebay, versus what they original sold for?!? Unless you need 9.2, 11.2 or 3D video, there's no reason not to buy used. You can always purchase a square trade warranty if you're super worried about buying used. You'll end up with a system that would cost $6000+ new, but you'll only pay $2500 for it.
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post #20 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 05:12 PM
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I think Klipsch sound good. I don't know why people don't like them either??
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post #21 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 05:19 PM
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Originally Posted by etc6849 View Post

I'm not sure why folks have a bias against Klipsch.

I think it's because (w/ the exception of the Klipsch THX Ultra2 system) most of the Klipsch speakers measure like +/-4db to +/-5dB Frequency Response. B&W also get plenty of bashing for the same reasons, except they have backing from some big studios like Abbey Road and Skywalker Ranch, etc.

I think if all Klipsch speakers measure +/-1dB from 100Hz-10kHz w/ smooth off-axis like the KL650-THX, we would not see so much stereotypic bashing of Klipsch. biggrin.gif
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post #22 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 05:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TJames03 View Post

What about the DefTech system that was suggested to me?

Actually, I found the BP-8040ST system (2 ea. BP-8040ST, 1 each CS-8040HD and 2 each SR-8040BP) for around $2,100 on designeraudiovideo.com.

Any experience with these speakers (or with this online retailer)?

How would this system compare to those previously mentioned? Also - how do the integrated subs compare to stand-alone?

I used to own the $5500 flagship DefTech BP7000SC. And although I enjoyed them a lot, I thought high quality Sats + Subs performed at least as well or better for less money.

I agree w/ Shady that the DefTech tower, like any other tower, is basically a Sat atop Sub, except all the drivers are placed in the same body. And when those built-in subwoofers shake your walls, they also shake the heck out of the tower cabinet. biggrin.gif

My KEF Sats sit on stands atop my RBH Subs. When my subs rattle the walls and shake me like rag doll eek.gif, I don't even feel any vibrations on my KEF Sats. Of course, this also depends on the quality of the speaker stands, anti-vibration feet, and subs. biggrin.gif
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post #23 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 05:58 PM
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Here is one more suggestion:

Ascend 340's for LCR and 170's for surrounds.

http://www.ascendacoustics.com/pages/purchase/advisor.mv#bottom

Power Sound sub of your choice, XV15 or XS15:

http://www.powersoundaudio.com/collections/power-x

Here is a review of the XV15:


http://www.audioholics.com/subwoofer-reviews/xv-15-subwoofer

Denon AVR-X100:

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_033AVX1000/Denon-AVR-X1000.html
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post #24 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 06:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AcuDefTechGuy View Post

I used to own the $5500 flagship DefTech BP7000SC. And although I enjoyed them a lot, I thought high quality Sats + Subs performed at least as well or better for less money.

I agree w/ Shady that the DefTech tower, like any other tower, is basically a Sat atop Sub, except all the drivers are placed in the same body. And when those built-in subwoofers shake your walls, they also shake the heck out of the tower cabinet. biggrin.gif

My KEF Sats sit on stands atop my RBH Subs. When my subs rattle the walls and shake me like rag doll eek.gif, I don't even feel any vibrations on my KEF Sats. Of course, this also depends on the quality of the speaker stands, anti-vibration feet, and subs. biggrin.gif
I own the deftech 8060-st's and when cranked the enclosures don't vibrate...smile.gif...in my opinion you get more accurate sound with the deftech towers....all you need to worry about is the sub gain to match your sub tastes...smile.gif...Acudeftechguy...have you owned the 8060 or 8080 deftech's?

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post #25 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 07:34 PM
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Originally Posted by baloo_btru View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by losservatore View Post

The problem with klipsch is that you will hate or love then, if you are very sensitive to bright or in your face sound, you will get ear fatigue in seconds specially if you will be seating close to the speakers, you will be using only half of the room so I don't think klipsch is strictly necessary.

The newer klipsch speakers aren't nearly as harsh as the old ones. And also, this has to be the most overblown worry ever.

It's not like the speakers are shrill or something. They sound fantastic, though they are more forward than other brands. Its what attracted me to them. The center channel is incredible and just having the front 3 up without putting up the surrounds it fills up my whole space (2700 cu ft).

I know that some people prefer a softer sound, but it's not like your ears will start bleeding as soon as you start listening.


Im not saying that klipsch is a bad speaker, the problem is for people that have a very sensitive ears or have tinnitus.Klipsch are going to be too bright for then,they wont make their ears bleed but they will get a bad night with the ringing on their ears.


OP If you don't have any of this problems then don't worry.

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post #26 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 08:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bladerunner6 View Post

Here is one more suggestion:

Ascend 340's for LCR and 170's for surrounds.

http://www.ascendacoustics.com/pages/purchase/advisor.mv#bottom

Power Sound sub of your choice, XV15 or XS15:

http://www.powersoundaudio.com/collections/power-x

Here is a review of the XV15:


http://www.audioholics.com/subwoofer-reviews/xv-15-subwoofer

Denon AVR-X100:

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_033AVX1000/Denon-AVR-X1000.html

I was going to suggest something very similar, only maybe instead of the XV15, dual SVS PB-100s. http://www.svsound.com/subwoofers/ported-box/pb-1000#.UhwXSxukqBo The XV15 will have more output, but dual subs can give you better bass distribution throughout a room. That might be nice for when you are running music and playing pool or ping pong.

Your questions are answered:
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post #27 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 08:24 PM
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Can you provide a link that actually measures this for Klipsch speakers such as the RF-83, RF-7, RF-83, etc...? Next compare it with speakers in the same price range you are recommending. I think all the Klispch speakers recommended were well within 3dB, but that's according to the specs. Here was the only measurements I found for the RF-83 and they were averaged over +/-15 degrees, in a quasi-anechoic chamber: http://www.hometheater.com/content/klipsch-reference-rf-83-speaker-system-ht-labs-measures

I have a hard time seeing any "brightness" (looks flat at higher frequencies to me), and while there is a small dip at 1kHz (presumably from the crossover?), I don't see this +/-5dB at all!?! Again, keep in mind the plot is an average of several +/-15 degree off axis measurements.

Not saying you are wrong, but I would like to see objective tests. I agree there is a change in off axis response and horn loading may affect this, but any speaker's response changes off axis. I do tilt my RF-83's in a little, so I doubt this off axis response is an issue with my normal sized room. After all, who doesn't tilt their speakers slightly toward the center?

Further, no one needs a +/-1dB flat speaker, that's impossible in a home environment?!? The room will affect the response no matter what you do, so unless you listen in an anechoic chamber with your head in an exact position and do not move your head at all, I call BS on the +/-1dB claim. That's not to say anyone in blind testing could detect a +/-4dB difference versus a +/-1dB difference; they obviously couldn't.

For fun, I found these Deftech speakers (bp-8080st) measured here that retail for $1499 each:
http://www.hometheater.com/content/definitive-technology-bp-8080st-speaker-system-ht-labs-measures

They actually retail for more than the original MSRP of the RF-83's. Look at the response plots and compare, which speakers would you really want?!? Of course the Deftech's are only 66 pounds and that's with a built in amp versus the 100lbs of the RF-83's.
Quote:
Originally Posted by AcuDefTechGuy View Post

I think it's because (w/ the exception of the Klipsch THX Ultra2 system) most of the Klipsch speakers measure like +/-4db to +/-5dB Frequency Response. B&W also get plenty of bashing for the same reasons, except they have backing from some big studios like Abbey Road and Skywalker Ranch, etc.

I think if all Klipsch speakers measure +/-1dB from 100Hz-10kHz w/ smooth off-axis like the KL650-THX, we would not see so much stereotypic bashing of Klipsch. biggrin.gif


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post #28 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 09:00 PM
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I am going to flat out say Klipsch is a bad speaker. They are bright, harsh, completely lacking musicality, even the new ones. Even if you like them, and some people obviously do, many people who visit probably won't. A good speaker should not be so polarizing, period. I apologize this may flame the thread.

As for your budget, I recommend getting a good two channel setup and adding the subs, center and surrounds when you get a couple extra bucks. Get a $500 dollar receiver and find a pair of lightly cared for tower speakers for $2k from Audiogon (ensure a highly rated seller) with good bass and wide dispersion and make yourself some blue jeans cables.

This will sound way better than splitting your budget over 5 speakers and subs. I don't recommend speaker brands (There are many great midfi speakers), only you can pick your speakers. Go listen, then listen some more. Take your same favorite CDs to every store, and then finally try in your home with a return policy or buy lightly used.

And...only then, if you love Klipsch or any other brand speaker, ignore everyone's recommendations, including mine, and buy them. Good luck and enjoy the process.
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post #29 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 09:17 PM
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And my ears actually do bleed when I listen to Klipsch speakers. Not bad, just a trickle...
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post #30 of 75 Old 08-26-2013, 11:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by losservatore View Post

Im not saying that klipsch is a bad speaker, the problem is for people that have a very sensitive ears or have tinnitus.Klipsch are going to be too bright for then,they wont make their ears bleed but they will get a bad night with the ringing on their ears.


OP If you don't have any of this problems then don't worry.


If you bought a sub and it had to much bass what would you do? You would turn it down right. I would rather have a bright speaker that i can tame down with a little eq in the avr than a speaker that isn't bright enough and cant be turned up because it cant reach those levels. Basically like the sub example imo having to much is an easy fix but not enough and your looking for new speakers, biggrin.gif


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