Going from Axiom to EMP? - AVS Forum
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Old 03-30-2014, 10:46 PM - Thread Starter
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Currently my 5.1 HT setup consist of the older Axiom M22ti with Infinity Primus C25 center, and Flunace XLBP-DW Bipolar surround running off of Denon E300 receiver. For low end I'm covered with my old SVS PSB12-ISD. I'm itching to upgrade the entire speaker system, thought about going Axiom line again, either M60 or M80 for the front, VP160 center, and QS8 surround but from what I read Axiom is not the only best bang for the buck company out there like it used to anymore. From what I read for the money it is hard to beat EMP, ARX and HTD, but I've never heard of these brands before, and curious if these are in the same league as those White Van speakers being sold in the back valley?

I'll be using it 80% for HT and 20% for music, I can get the entire setup with EMP E55Ti for the front, E56ci center channel and E55Wi Surround for about $1500, cost equivalent to one pair of Axiom M80...sounds too good to be true? LOL The EMP in Red burl looks more attractive than the boxy looking Axiom, ARX or HTD though. They would become part of the family room furniture so its a plus to have something decent looking. Another reason why i lean toward EMP appear to have a better center channel to match the tower? Am in on the right track to go with EMP or is Axiom the safer bet?
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Old 03-31-2014, 05:29 AM
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Originally Posted by ben805 View Post

Currently my 5.1 HT setup consist of the older Axiom M22ti with Infinity Primus C25 center, and Flunace XLBP-DW Bipolar surround running off of Denon E300 receiver. For low end I'm covered with my old SVS PSB12-ISD. I'm itching to upgrade the entire speaker system, thought about going Axiom line again, either M60 or M80 for the front, VP160 center, and QS8 surround but from what I read Axiom is not the only best bang for the buck company out there like it used to anymore. From what I read for the money it is hard to beat EMP, ARX and HTD, but I've never heard of these brands before, and curious if these are in the same league as those White Van speakers being sold in the back valley?

I'll be using it 80% for HT and 20% for music, I can get the entire setup with EMP E55Ti for the front, E56ci center channel and E55Wi Surround for about $1500, cost equivalent to one pair of Axiom M80...sounds too good to be true? LOL The EMP in Red burl looks more attractive than the boxy looking Axiom, ARX or HTD though. They would become part of the family room furniture so its a plus to have something decent looking. Another reason why i lean toward EMP appear to have a better center channel to match the tower? Am in on the right track to go with EMP or is Axiom the safer bet?

EMP, HTD, and Arx are far from white van speakers. RBH Sound is the parent company of EMP, and a lot of their R&D has trickled down. I think compared to the newer Axioms, the two brands are pretty similar. I have read Axiom tends to be a little brighter, but they make good speakers. For the money, the EMPs are hard to beat, I think you would be very happy with them.

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Old 03-31-2014, 05:39 AM
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Originally Posted by ben805 View Post

Currently my 5.1 HT setup consist of the older Axiom M22ti with Infinity Primus C25 center, and Flunace XLBP-DW Bipolar surround running off of Denon E300 receiver. For low end I'm covered with my old SVS PSB12-ISD. I'm itching to upgrade the entire speaker system, thought about going Axiom line again, either M60 or M80 for the front, VP160 center, and QS8 surround but from what I read Axiom is not the only best bang for the buck company out there like it used to anymore. From what I read for the money it is hard to beat EMP, ARX and HTD, but I've never heard of these brands before, and curious if these are in the same league as those White Van speakers being sold in the back valley?

I'll be using it 80% for HT and 20% for music, I can get the entire setup with EMP E55Ti for the front, E56ci center channel and E55Wi Surround for about $1500, cost equivalent to one pair of Axiom M80...sounds too good to be true? LOL The EMP in Red burl looks more attractive than the boxy looking Axiom, ARX or HTD though. They would become part of the family room furniture so its a plus to have something decent looking. Another reason why i lean toward EMP appear to have a better center channel to match the tower? Am in on the right track to go with EMP or is Axiom the safer bet?

EMP is a unit of RBH. The reason they are so inexpensive is 1. Chinese manufacture and 2. manufacturer direct pricing. There are no dealers and no dealer markup. I have an EMP system myself and it is incredible for the price not only in terms of sound but in terms of fit and finish. Since you are mostly HT I would suggest using the Impressions bookshelves instead of the towers. Your subwoofer will handle the bass just fine. That will save you even more. My system has the towers, though, and I can assure you they sound as good as anything under $2000 per pair.
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Old 03-31-2014, 06:31 PM
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I owned Axiom M22 V2s, Axiom VP150 V2 and two pair of Axiom M2 V2 and sold them all for my current Arx setup and i'm completely satisfied. IMO Axiom isn't even in the same league at Arx for quality and sound.

I pulled the drivers from a Axiom M22 and compared it to the Arx A1 bookshelf driver. Both are listed as 5.25" woofers. Axiom is on the left and Arx on the right. The Axiom is also quite a bit more.

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Old 03-31-2014, 06:36 PM
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Where ARX cut costs in the exterior and finish of the speaker, they put that money towards the hardware and quality of the inner components. And that's all that really matters in a dark theater. cool.gif

Unless you have a strong need for high WAF, ARX is an amazing choice for performance to the dollar.
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Old 03-31-2014, 09:19 PM
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Well HTS (Home Theater Shack) has done extensive reviews on both ARX & Axiom brands in recent speaker reviews. The same members who raved about the ARXs over there also spoke very highly of the Axiom in a recent speaker review. Most speakers IMO are lateral changes within certain price points...it really becomes a point to diminishing and what you're willing to pay to achieve your goals.

For the record I owned Axiom 5.1 system and they compared favorably to other speakers I have listened to within their price points...Fwiw...I did not not love them but certainly not bad like some people make them out to be...just not to my tastes....speakers after all are highly subjective and one should always do the necessary means to audition them in their homes...that's what I did.

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Old 03-31-2014, 09:27 PM
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Ben:

The V2s mentioned above are slightly newer that your old 'tis' but both iterations are long obsolete & are hardly comparable to today's product. The V4s are now shipping along with HP (High Power) drivers that are also available.

Axiom chooses to do much of their building over here, hence they have lost price advantage to many other brands that have exported virtually all of their manufacturing processes & jobs overseas. I have 3 separate V3 systems (my new QS8s are V4) that all perform exceedingly well & are certainly competitive in their class. To see what the V4s are all about, check out the M100 review along with some other excellent brands here:

http://www.hometheatershack.com/forums/home-audio-speakers/73340-official-3-000-speaker-evaluation-home-audition-event.html

Also at HTS, Arx did well in a previous review there as well.

Your speaker candidates are all solid choices that will most likely perform 'similarly good'. What others like sound-wise is largely irrelevant. In the end it is up to the customer to choose what sounds best to him at the price that he wants to pay.

BTW, interesting to see the ubiquitous 'drivers' pic again as it has been several months since it was last trotted out for the umpteenth time...

TAM
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Old 04-01-2014, 07:37 AM
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TAM do you do anything on AVS, Audioholics and HTS but shill Axiom products? I see you were accused of having an agenda over at HTS as well.

Funny I wouldn't call the V2 long obsolete and not comparable, seems some on the Axiom forum think they are "similarly good".

I also think its great that HTS has a discussion about $3000 towers and the $798 Arx A5 is mentioned multiple times. Guess the Arx A5 and Axiom M100 is "similarly good" so why paid $2000 more for the Axiom? The Arx did so well that the Hometheater Shack owner purchased a pair for himself. Don't think the Axiom is being purchased.

The HP woofers are not standard and are not available in the bookshelf models and it drives the price much much higher in the models that do offer that. Arx on the other hand has a XBL2/ Splitgap HIGH POWERED woofer in the $300 bookshelf and every model as standard.

The Arx A5 and M60 are both similar performing tower speakers both are 3 ways with similar size. BUT to get HP woofers Axiom charges $740 for two pair of 6.5" woofers the price of pretty much a pair of Arx A5s. That by the way come standard with pretty sweet HP drivers. So the Axiom M60 and Arx A5 are similarly good why would anyone pay $1000 more for Axiom?

And TAM if all these speakers are "similarly good" why does it matter where they are built? Just buy the cheapest.
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Old 04-01-2014, 08:05 AM
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I don't know if going to Arx or EMP Tek from Axiom is a big upgrade, but one thing is for sure, you need to get a matching front stage speaker set. From what measurements I have seen of Axiom speakers, I wouldn't be surprised if Arx, EMP, or Ascends were an audible improvement, but I can't believe that improvement would be gigantic. If it were me, I would upgrade to such an extant that the improvement is immediately and unquestionably noticeable. I would save up and skip all these mid fi towers and take the system to the next level, I would go for Pi, JTR, upper end JBL LSR, Seaton, etc. If you don't need huge dynamics, I would be looking at Philharmonics, Salks, Ascend Sierra 2s, and speakers along those lines. You might also look at the some of the better studio monitors, Mackie HR series, Adam AX series, and Emotiva Stealths look pretty good too. I think any of those would knock your current setup out of the park and also any of the replacement systems you are thinking about. Yeah they cost 3X as much, but at least you will never be left wondering or feel the upgrade itch after that.
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Old 04-01-2014, 11:20 AM
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GTP:

Unfortunately, here we go again.

No, as I've stated many time before, I just provide a counter point to your unending juvenile brand bashing & only when necessary. Unlike so many here who push their favourites in thread after thread, I don't even join threads where Axiom is not mentioned. So a shill I'm not - I just detest brand bashing. The 'agenda' guy at HTS has mentioned his experience in Montreal elsewhere since 2012 where he supposedly talked to the CEO & his wife at the trade show. Seems that the CEO wasn't even there - so draw your own conclusions

The V2 is long obsolete but obviously it is still useful for you to use in your outdated arguments.

People generally purchase larger towers at a higher price point mostly for greater bass extension (31 Hz vs 45 Hz), higher power handling, more output, perhaps more refined sound & visual impact in the room. Personally I go with bookshelfs & subs in a more minimalist approach.

The OP didn't mention bookshelf models as he alluded to towers where HP drivers are available.

Not all people are terminally frugal & in this sometimes bizarre pastime, are willing to pay whatever it takes to get what they want or can afford.

And oh, I & many others care where they are built....

TAM
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Old 04-01-2014, 06:07 PM
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Originally Posted by FMW View Post

EMP is a unit of RBH. The reason they are so inexpensive is 1. Chinese manufacture and 2. manufacturer direct pricing. There are no dealers and no dealer markup. I have an EMP system myself and it is incredible for the price not only in terms of sound but in terms of fit and finish. Since you are mostly HT I would suggest using the Impressions bookshelves instead of the towers. Your subwoofer will handle the bass just fine. That will save you even more. My system has the towers, though, and I can assure you they sound as good as anything under $2000 per pair.

I am looking at a set of EMP speakers for movie watching. Why do you recommend bookshelves over towers for this?
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Old 04-01-2014, 07:19 PM
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I am looking at a set of EMP speakers for movie watching. Why do you recommend bookshelves over towers for this?
Usually bookshelves get recommended because for HT you should have a sub. The sub negates the additional bass advantage of the towers. Usually for the same price of the tower you can also get a higher line bookshelf speaker.
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Old 04-01-2014, 08:48 PM
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Originally Posted by MarsianMan View Post

Usually bookshelves get recommended because for HT you should have a sub. The sub negates the additional bass advantage of the towers. Usually for the same price of the tower you can also get a higher line bookshelf speaker.

How does bookshelf compare to towers for output?
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Old 04-02-2014, 01:35 AM
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newto:

I have a couple of bigger bookshelves (Axiom M22V3s) that sit directly on top of their own Velodyne 10" sub to the L & R of the screen. While this is a modest HT system when compared to many out there, I can assure you that there is no trouble with clean output in my medium sized room. I rarely listen to movies at anything over -10 Db on my Denon AVR because it becomes just too loud for comfort. For music concert DVD/Blu Rays, -20 to -15 Db is plenty to peak out around 90 Db at my listening area. Certainly loud enough for me.

What is more important now is to have a larger & more capable CC speaker than in the past. The prevailing wisdom now is that sound tracks are mostly mixed to send 70 to 80% of the front sound stage to the CC with the L & R kind of idling most of the time. Because of this fact, I recently upgraded from a smaller VP100 speaker (WTW type) to a VP160 that is quite a monster of a CC speaker. Audyssey heard my previous CC speaker at 80 or 90 Hz but my new one at 40 Hz so there is much more lower end response, similar to the L & R 40 Hz response. I manually set both the CC and L & R Xovers to 60 Hz & it works just fine.

Hope this helps...

TAM
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Old 04-02-2014, 07:23 AM
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Originally Posted by ex-labdriver View Post

GTP:

Unfortunately, here we go again.

No, as I've stated many time before, I just provide a counter point to your unending juvenile brand bashing & only when necessary. Unlike so many here who push their favourites in thread after thread , I don't even join threads where Axiom is not mentioned. So a shill I'm not - I just detest brand bashing. The 'agenda' guy at HTS has mentioned his experience in Montreal elsewhere since 2012 where he supposedly talked to the CEO & his wife at the trade show. Seems that the CEO wasn't even there - so draw your own conclusions

The V2 is long obsolete but obviously it is still useful for you to use in your outdated arguments.

People generally purchase larger towers at a higher price point mostly for greater bass extension (31 Hz vs 45 Hz), higher power handling, more output, perhaps more refined sound & visual impact in the room. Personally I go with bookshelfs & subs in a more minimalist approach.

The OP didn't mention bookshelf models as he alluded to towers where HP drivers are available.

Not all people are terminally frugal & in this sometimes bizarre pastime, are willing to pay whatever it takes to get what they want or can afford.

And oh, I & many others care where they are built....

TAM

The OP is wanting opinions on going from Axiom (which I too have experience with) to some other brands (which I too have experience with). You only agenda is to search out Axiom related threads and add only positive comments for hits on google and else where. You are a shill when the only thing you do is Axiom only threads, to counter someones opinion. You are also just as guilty as pushing your favorites in everything you post in. You can't go one post without mentioning your 3 Axiom setups.

This isn't the Axiom forum this is a open forum where everyone's opinion is heard.

What is obsolete about the V2's compared to the current models? Can you tell use in detail?

The Axiom forum is full of terminally frugal posters. All I read over the years is how Axiom is such a great value compared to the over priced B&M brands and they including Alan Loft bashed the premium store brands like B&W and Paradigm. The most common thing i've read over there is how the Paradigm Studios are just so over priced compared to your dear Axioms.

So in that same way why is it someone is bizarre and frugal for wanting cheaper "similarly good" speakers compared to Axiom? You are also terminally frugal as you posted before you WILL NOT purchase brands from the US cause of customs and cross boarder shipping. Axiom speakers are all a PREMIUM compared to brands we get in the US.

The Op is obviously not interested in where the speaker was built, since he mentioned EMP and Arx. It also don't make them any less for being built overseas. And Axiom isn't better because they are made in Canada.
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Old 04-02-2014, 07:56 AM
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I cannot add to this Axiom/Arx distaction to the thread, but I do own EMPtek towers. Vewry good speaker for the money. Really neutral speakers, maybe just abit hot in the midrange. not bright at all, in fact some like to boost the high end abit by EQ.

However, as others have suggested, I am not sure how much of an upgrade, if any, you will get going from the Axiom speakers you own to EMP impression. You will benefit from having a timbre- matched front stage!

Set up #1: EMP e5ti, e5Ci, and SLS Q line Audio surrounds, EMP 10i10i sub
Set up #2: Def Tech SM450, CLR2002, SLS Qline surrounds and Klipsch 12wD sub
Set up #3: JBL130, JBL120C and Klipsch synergy sub
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Old 04-02-2014, 08:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tlee82 View Post

How does bookshelf compare to towers for output?
That depends on the specific specs of the speakers being compared. You can find towers that have higher output than some bookshelves, you can find bookshelves that have higher output than some towers. However, in a well designed system using subs the mains don't have low frequency capacity than goes significantly lower than the actual crossover frequency, because all you get is a larger, more expensive speaker that doesn't work any better.
This picture shows such a system:

The 'bookshelves' are hung to the left and right, the subs are stacked on the ground.
It may be a smidge larger than yours, but the physics of how it works is the same. Note the lack of floorstanders. rolleyes.gif

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Old 04-02-2014, 10:02 AM
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ben:

Hopefully you have enough info now to narrow down your choices & then go for one. After that there is the 'fun' of setting them up, calibrating, tweaking & then enjoy.

Good luck in your quest - may it be short & successful....

TAM
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Old 04-02-2014, 11:46 AM
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Originally Posted by gtpsuper24 View Post

I owned Axiom M22 V2s, Axiom VP150 V2 and two pair of Axiom M2 V2 and sold them all for my current Arx setup and i'm completely satisfied. IMO Axiom isn't even in the same league at Arx for quality and sound.

I pulled the drivers from a Axiom M22 and compared it to the Arx A1 bookshelf driver. Both are listed as 5.25" woofers. Axiom is on the left and Arx on the right. The Axiom is also quite a bit more.



If I show you an apple and tell you that its an orange would you believe me. Speakers are measured by their outside diameter, always have been always will. Just a marketing ploy an unsavory manufacturer might use to discount the competition and give them bragging rights. The M100 received excellent feedback at HTS recently and they share the same drivers, cabinet construction and design philosophy as other axiom products which could be considered as similar sound and quality. It is true Axiom is not the value they one were, but that does not make them an inferior speaker. The world is ever changing and companies must adapt or die, which is passed on to the consumer. I actually considered ARX if for nothing else but a test and compare but with the exchange and shipping and duty they are not a value to the Canadian customer. I own axioms , are they extrodinary , no ... do they get the job done yes and they are pretty darn good for the money I paid. I don't have the scratch for a a tower speaker I would consider an upgrade from my axioms. If I owned ARX's I would probably endorse them if I was equally impressed, but I would not do so at the expense of another company. I think if the OP can afford return shipping he should try all the speakers he listed and see which one suits his listening preference in his house . I truly believe there are many many great brands of speakers available to the mass's , something for everyone and hopefully we all can find that one speaker that works for us at our
own personal price point. I read in other forums of guys sending back Salk song towers and the likes because they just didn't do it for them. I say to each his own. As a side note , Axiom is now on V4 and has made a lot of changes, more bracing, different crossovers upgraded tweeters so I don't think V2 comparisons are relevant to this discussion

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