Originally Posted by Bond 007
Either one will handle more power than your AVR can put out if youre listening in a 5 channel mode. Lots of people use an external amp with them if you want ear bleeding sound levels. Id bet that Newc33 is using one. Your room is so small though that you would have to really want outrageous levels to need an external amp. But keep in mind its just as easy to damage speakers by clipping your amp as it is by giving them too much power.
Both speakers have very good sound quality. If youre looking for the loudest speaker with the best value I would get the 340. If youre really looking for the best sound quality then get the S1.
I'm definitely learning towards the Sierra 1s for Ascend. I was reading in the Sierra thread and discovered the RAAL upgrade that's available. I love that concept as it will probably be used down the road. And right now I have no idea how loud I'll be able to push them stock but there is that 30 day demo to try them out and find out. SQ definitely reigns supreme over SPL so I'll give the 340's a pass I think.
The more I read about these the closer they sound in the reviews as a close comparison to SVS' Ultra bookshelfs which are slightly more expensive. Other factors to consider would be the Sierra 1 center vs the SVS Ultra center too as I'm going for a complete package with the SVS being about $300 more for the center channel.
Regarding the surrounds for Ascend and SVS both, I feel I'd be getting a different brand as SVS surrounds are a crazy $1200 but wall mountable and the Ascend 170's need too much room away from the wall due to the rear port :/.
Lastly, and I don't know how much of a difference this will make, but my sub will be an SVS PC12-Plus so it may integrate with the Ultras slightly better. The only critique I read on the Sierra1 was a slight lack of midrange but great bass. Of course, with a sub, the bass is null regardless of speaker.
I know I still have time to make a decision but these two are the highest contenders right now. When the time comes, and if the funds allow, I may just have to get both and sample them side by side
And then there is the Sierra 2 to think about as well
. The more I read about Ascend, the more respect I have for them as a company in general...same reasons I'm a fan of SVS. Going to be a tough one.