Focal - JM Lab Owner's Thread - Page 237 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #7081 of 7110 Old 01-13-2016, 05:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scottyman View Post
The 936 tweeter's are a bit harsh and unnatural/artificial sounding. Unpleasant sibilance. I even tried Dark side of the Moon SACD in Direct Mode and Stereo. Radio stations and all my other CD's so far sound the same. Would trying a different AVR matter? I really hate the thought of shipping these back, but I don't want to live with the harshness either.
need some decent amplification. if happy to keep the avr as a processor is adding a good power amp an option...not sure if the onkyo avr has pre outs.

the other thing is eq and setup. can we have some pics of how you have these setup in the room ? makes quite a difference. plus what eq / setup have you done on the onkyo.

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post #7082 of 7110 Old 01-13-2016, 09:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scottyman View Post
Musicdirect

CD's, all radio stations and SACD have harshness and sibilance whether in Pure Direct Mode or Stereo. Oddly,
in Transformers Age of Extinction I tried the Stereo Mix option from the BluRay and it sounds (Direct Mode) very good through the Aria's . Not bright at all and no sibilance. The only source that sounds decent so far.
I would not suspect the Onkyo. The usual Onkyo complaint is "dark".
I would not suspect the speaker unless it is faulty as others have speculated. I have heard the Aria and other Focal on many occasions. Lively and airy. Never bright or harsh. Rare complaints. Has to be something else in the chain.

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post #7083 of 7110 Old 01-13-2016, 09:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Contuzzi View Post
Aside from the fact that you're driving them with a $1,200 Onkyo 7 channel receiver -- make sure your room correction is turned off, tone controls are all flat, maybe even turn on pure direct mode or whatever Onkyo calls it.

The way you described the speakers is just totally not common, so something is definitely wrong.
I just realized this receiver has Accu Eq.. That is probably the problem. Get a newer Yamaha receiver.. I had the 2050 and it was great! You shouldn't have a problem with piercing highs. It is probably the receiver. I have an Onkyo 818 with Audyssey XT32 and it sound awesome!
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post #7084 of 7110 Old 01-13-2016, 09:51 PM
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Looking forward to joining the Focal family! Just ordered a pair of Aria 936's on sale after hearing them in store. Can't wait to set them up! I'm driving them with an Anthem MRX 510 so I hope it sounds as good as I expect them to.
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post #7085 of 7110 Old 01-13-2016, 10:07 PM
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I used to own an Integra, never found it bright or harsh, when it died and I got the Marantz I have now, I realized the Integra was leaner and more agressive sounding then the warmer fuller sounding Marantz. By that I mean I'd have to turn up the Marantz higher and things still sounded softer overall, however male voices and the center channel had more umph to it. But the high level dynamics of the Integra was missing. The onkyo in my bedroom seems to have similar sound to my older integra, but less power.

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post #7086 of 7110 Old 01-13-2016, 10:34 PM
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I had an integra 7.2 a long time ago.. It was really nice. I think Integra and Onkyo sound the same. Never owned a Marantz.. Congrats on the Aria 936's.. Beautiful speakers. Love the gloss black and leather.
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post #7087 of 7110 Old 01-19-2016, 11:44 PM
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Hey guys hope someone here can help me. I currently have the chorus 814v(which is just the 716v in piano black) I am looking to upgrade
I am trying to decide between the Focal Aria 936 and the Sonus Faber Venere 3.0.
Has anyone heard both that can compare them. How about their build quality and if they are upgrades to what I have.
There are no local focal dealers around me so I have no way to hear the Aria. I tested the sonus faber, and while they do sound a little laid back I still thought they sounded great.
I am powering my current set up with a Carver M500T Amplifier with the MKII upgrade. So I have about 400wpc to work with if needed.
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post #7088 of 7110 Old 01-20-2016, 11:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shortyg83 View Post
Hey guys hope someone here can help me. I currently have the chorus 814v(which is just the 716v in piano black) I am looking to upgrade
I am trying to decide between the Focal Aria 936 and the Sonus Faber Venere 3.0.
Has anyone heard both that can compare them. How about their build quality and if they are upgrades to what I have.
There are no local focal dealers around me so I have no way to hear the Aria. I tested the sonus faber, and while they do sound a little laid back I still thought they sounded great.
I am powering my current set up with a Carver M500T Amplifier with the MKII upgrade. So I have about 400wpc to work with if needed.
I have heard the Aria 936's in store and they blew me away. Amazing clarity, solid bass performance, this speaker has the ability to recreate a very realistic soundstage. I didn't find the speaker overly warm or bright. They were somewhat neutral but in a great way. I tested these alongside the Magnepan 1.7, 3.7 and BW CM series and I thought the Aria's definitely came out on top. Having said that, they are my preference. I really do not think you can go wrong with them. They look really sexy too I haven't heard the Sonus' though.
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post #7089 of 7110 Old 01-20-2016, 05:39 PM
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Originally Posted by freesole View Post
I have heard the Aria 936's in store and they blew me away. Amazing clarity, solid bass performance, this speaker has the ability to recreate a very realistic soundstage. I didn't find the speaker overly warm or bright. They were somewhat neutral but in a great way. I tested these alongside the Magnepan 1.7, 3.7 and BW CM series and I thought the Aria's definitely came out on top. Having said that, they are my preference. I really do not think you can go wrong with them. They look really sexy too I haven't heard the Sonus' though.
The inverted tweeter of the Focal is lively and airy without being harsh. The speaker is well balanced.
The Sonus is going to have better build and as commented on before, a more laid back sound but still quite detailed. It would be a hard choice to make for sure. A choice that should be driven by the goals and preference of the listener.

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post #7090 of 7110 Old 01-20-2016, 08:02 PM
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Originally Posted by tritiumglo View Post
The inverted tweeter of the Focal is lively and airy without being harsh. The speaker is well balanced.
The Sonus is going to have better build and as commented on before, a more laid back sound but still quite detailed. It would be a hard choice to make for sure. A choice that should be driven by the goals and preference of the listener.
It is a hard choice. The thing is my goal includes about a 50/50 use of music and movies. I do like music on the sonus, but have not been able to hear them in a home theater set up. Are they going to be lively and detailed enough for the sound in say action movies?
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post #7091 of 7110 Old 01-20-2016, 08:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shortyg83 View Post
It is a hard choice. The thing is my goal includes about a 50/50 use of music and movies. I do like music on the sonus, but have not been able to hear them in a home theater set up. Are they going to be lively and detailed enough for the sound in say action movies?
What makes a speaker better for HT.....? Dynamics? That would translate into a preference for higher efficiency. Focal is 2.5 db more efficient than Sonus.

For HT, I would have to lean towards Focal. The open and airy inverted tweeter is great for HT. I would speculate that the metal dome would have less break up during explosions and action scenes than the one used in the Sonus. Thats just my opinion. There are so many good choices today. Focal, Goldenear, PSB, Monitor, Dynaudio, Sonus, and others. Its hard to pick one over the other. For value, Goldenear/PSB rule. They do very well in both music and HT.

I cannot find fault sonically with my Goldenear Aon3s for HT or music. They are excellent. My PSB Stratus also excel at both music and HT. The current T3 does as well.

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Last edited by tritiumglo; 01-20-2016 at 08:24 PM.
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post #7092 of 7110 Old 01-21-2016, 03:31 PM
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Just got the Focal Aria 936's delivered today, set them up and am now taking a listen. Wow. First impressions are that they are so much more lively than my Epos Epic 5's. They are also a lot larger. But they seem to bring the music to life in a way that the Epos could not. Should be noted that I loved my Epos speakers and thought they sounded great but these are on another level altogether. Fantastic speakers!
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post #7093 of 7110 Old 01-21-2016, 07:13 PM
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post #7094 of 7110 Old 01-21-2016, 07:48 PM
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Hi Everyone,

Long time lurker, first time poster.

Firstly, this is my current system:

Marantz SR7008 AVR
Focal 836vw Mains
Focal Dome Surrounds
Sunfire HRS12 Sub

It sounds great, particularly for music. This system is in my living room, which means whenever I am watching TV, Movies, gaming etc I am using the above as opposed to TV speakers.

Whilst everything sounds great, I have been longing for a better centre for some time. Dialogue is a little lacking, particularly in movies, and this annoys the better half.

Seems like a simple solution - buy a matching centre (CC800vw) and all should be well. Except that the cc800vw is no longer made and I cannot find it anywhere (I live in Australia...)

I don't have sufficient funds (getting married in a few months) to sell everything and rebuild. This leaves me with a few different options:

1. Buy the Aria Centre and hope that the tonal match is close enough
2. Sell the fronts and surrounds and use that cash to supplement the purchase of a different set of mains and centre
3. Sell the fronts and surrounds and use that cash to supplement the purchase of much better quality fronts, with a view to purchase a matching centre later this year.

I'm looking for people's opinions on whether the Aria centre would be a good match and whether matching the fronts and centre is as important as I currently believe it is.

I'm also looking for opinions as to what a significant step up from my Focals would be - again living in Aus my options aren't the greatest but the following have really peaked my interest:

- B&W CM10S2
- B&W 803 Diamond
- Focal Electra 1028be
- Triangle Signature Delta
- Triangle Signature Alpha

All of the above have a matching centre, which I would be able to purchase later this year when funds are a bit better. If I was to go the route of selling my fronts and surrounds and only getting mains, I would be looking at the 803 diamonds, Electra or Signature Delta (maybe Alpha if its worth the extra)

Thanks in advance for any feedback and opinions.
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post #7095 of 7110 Old 01-21-2016, 07:48 PM
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Hi Everyone,

Long time lurker, first time poster.

Firstly, this is my current system:

Marantz SR7008 AVR
Focal 836vw Mains
Focal Dome Surrounds
Sunfire HRS12 Sub

It sounds great, particularly for music. This system is in my living room, which means whenever I am watching TV, Movies, gaming etc I am using the above as opposed to TV speakers.

Whilst everything sounds great, I have been longing for a better centre for some time. Dialogue is a little lacking, particularly in movies, and this annoys the better half.

Seems like a simple solution - buy a matching centre (CC800vw) and all should be well. Except that the cc800vw is no longer made and I cannot find it anywhere (I live in Australia...)

I don't have sufficient funds (getting married in a few months) to sell everything and rebuild. This leaves me with a few different options:

1. Buy the Aria Centre and hope that the tonal match is close enough
2. Sell the fronts and surrounds and use that cash to supplement the purchase of a different set of mains and centre
3. Sell the fronts and surrounds and use that cash to supplement the purchase of much better quality fronts, with a view to purchase a matching centre later this year.

I'm looking for people's opinions on whether the Aria centre would be a good match and whether matching the fronts and centre is as important as I currently believe it is.

I'm also looking for opinions as to what a significant step up from my Focals would be - again living in Aus my options aren't the greatest but the following have really peaked my interest:

- B&W CM10S2
- B&W 803 Diamond
- Focal Electra 1028be
- Triangle Signature Delta
- Triangle Signature Alpha

All of the above have a matching centre, which I would be able to purchase later this year when funds are a bit better. If I was to go the route of selling my fronts and surrounds and only getting mains, I would be looking at the 803 diamonds, Electra or Signature Delta (maybe Alpha if its worth the extra)

Thanks in advance for any feedback and opinions.
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post #7096 of 7110 Old 01-23-2016, 06:37 PM
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Originally Posted by doomigee View Post
I'm looking for people's opinions on whether the Aria centre would be a good match and whether matching the fronts and centre is as important as I currently believe it is.
The Aria center is pretty outstanding for only $900. I'd get that, and try to sell your fronts eventually to be replaced with Arias. The Aria line is pretty new so it's a good time to invest in it without worrying about not being able to find replacement parts etc if ever necessary.
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post #7097 of 7110 Old 01-27-2016, 03:09 PM
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Are they discontinuing the Aria series?
It seems that a lot of places are out of stock, or selling off remaining stock. Most dealers can no longer order the 948 or the 936.
I am worried about buying because the speaker seems to recent to have these issues if there wasn't a problem with them. I wonder if the flax cone has longevity issues.
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post #7098 of 7110 Old 01-27-2016, 03:12 PM
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Originally Posted by shortyg83 View Post
Are they discontinuing the Aria series?
It seems that a lot of places are out of stock, or selling off remaining stock. Most dealers can no longer order the 948 or the 936.
I am worried about buying because the speaker seems to recent to have these issues if there wasn't a problem with them. I wonder if the flax cone has longevity issues.
No. The old walnut finish was discontinued, so Music Direct bought them all out at a discount. Places like Spirit Sound or whatever also had a bunch left that they were selling open boxed. Have you talked to legit non discount dealers that said they can't get the 936 and 948?
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post #7099 of 7110 Unread 01-28-2016, 11:10 AM
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I'm hoping a few of you could give me your personal thoughts regarding Paradigm vs Focal "sound" signatures. I'm about to pull the trigger on the Paradigm 85F series, but a friend recommended I listed to the Focal Aria 936 series before making my decision. Both are considered their mid-tier offerings, and the price points are similar. (Although Paradigm is currently offering a $1300 center for free with the purchase of two towers)

Unfortunately, after searching today I discovered there are no local retailers in my area that have them set up in their showrooms. The speakers I choose would be used for 90% home theater and HTPC gaming, and 10% music. They would be powered by a Denon x4200 receiver.

From what I have read, it seems like Focal, Sonus Faber, etc, seem to be favored for music, whereas Paradigm gets the nod for home theater, as they are slightly more "forward".

Thank you.
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post #7100 of 7110 Unread 01-28-2016, 07:50 PM
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Originally Posted by LuminousWarrior View Post
I'm hoping a few of you could give me your personal thoughts regarding Paradigm vs Focal "sound" signatures. I'm about to pull the trigger on the Paradigm 85F series, but a friend recommended I listed to the Focal Aria 936 series before making my decision. Both are considered their mid-tier offerings, and the price points are similar. (Although Paradigm is currently offering a $1300 center for free with the purchase of two towers)

Unfortunately, after searching today I discovered there are no local retailers in my area that have them set up in their showrooms. The speakers I choose would be used for 90% home theater and HTPC gaming, and 10% music. They would be powered by a Denon x4200 receiver.

From what I have read, it seems like Focal, Sonus Faber, etc, seem to be favored for music, whereas Paradigm gets the nod for home theater, as they are slightly more "forward".

Thank you.
The paradigm deal you mentioned is amazing. That's a pretty smokin' deal. The paradigms have a good amount more bass and can play a little louder. They don't have the soundstage the focals do or the musicality. To put it simply, yes the focals would be better for music, but if you ask me, a speaker that is ideal for music is almost always ideal for home theater incidentally -- as long as it can play loud enough.

You can't go wrong with either honestly. Both are great for the money.
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post #7101 of 7110 Unread 01-30-2016, 10:35 PM
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I am still trying to decide between the aria 936 and the sonus faber vener 3.0.
Still haven't found someplace to hear the focal in person yet.
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post #7102 of 7110 Unread 01-31-2016, 07:24 AM
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I am still trying to decide between the aria 936 and the sonus faber vener 3.0.
Still haven't found someplace to hear the focal in person yet.
What state are you in?
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post #7103 of 7110 Unread 01-31-2016, 05:57 PM
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Hello all!

I'm wondering what I could expect from a more powerful receiver, if anything.

I have a strange condo living room setup.... Ceiling is open to a loft and behind the couch is an open stairway upstairs. The actual "living room" space is approx 8ft x 11ft with a wall to the right and open space to the left.

My initial goal was just to have better sound than I was getting from my soundbar (mission accomplished) but am wondering if I would benefit from more power.

I currently have a 3.1 setup.... Dome L/R, Sib XL center and Cub3 sub.

Using a Marantz NR1403, rated at 50w

The volume level I can go up to is beyond what is needed for the small space.... I'm wondering if more power would result in higher sound quality.

Thanks!!

Dave
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Originally Posted by DVotta View Post
Hello all!

I'm wondering what I could expect from a more powerful receiver, if anything.

I have a strange condo living room setup.... Ceiling is open to a loft and behind the couch is an open stairway upstairs. The actual "living room" space is approx 8ft x 11ft with a wall to the right and open space to the left.

My initial goal was just to have better sound than I was getting from my soundbar (mission accomplished) but am wondering if I would benefit from more power.

I currently have a 3.1 setup.... Dome L/R, Sib XL center and Cub3 sub.

Using a Marantz NR1403, rated at 50w

The volume level I can go up to is beyond what is needed for the small space.... I'm wondering if more power would result in higher sound quality.

Thanks!!

Dave
Sorry, forgot to mention.... Domes are rated 25w-100w and the Sib XL is 15w-150w
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post #7105 of 7110 Unread 01-31-2016, 07:13 PM
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What state are you in?
Pennsylvania.
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post #7106 of 7110 Unread Yesterday, 02:13 PM
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Ok well I ended up getting the Focal Aria 936.
Had a little question/idea. I was thinking about replacing the Aluminum speaker plinth with a walnut wood block. Would there be any downside to doing this? I know there wouldn't be an upside, it would be for looks only.
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post #7107 of 7110 Unread Yesterday, 10:26 PM
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Ok well I ended up getting the Focal Aria 936.
Had a little question/idea. I was thinking about replacing the Aluminum speaker plinth with a walnut wood block. Would there be any downside to doing this? I know there wouldn't be an upside, it would be for looks only.
There is a bottom port that is designed to breathe. Unless of course you're crossing over into a sub which you'd want to plug the ports anyway.
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post #7108 of 7110 Unread Yesterday, 11:55 PM
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There is a bottom port that is designed to breathe. Unless of course you're crossing over into a sub which you'd want to plug the ports anyway.
Changing the plinth would not block the bottom port. The speaker would still have to small legs separating the speaker and the plinth. I don't believe they are one piece.
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post #7109 of 7110 Unread Today, 09:59 AM
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Hi everyone,

This is my first post here and am glad to know you guys. I'm currently looking for my first 2.1 system and would like to ask for you guys' thoughts/opinions/advice.

I'm currently considering the following loudspeakers:
  • Focal Electra 1028 be
  • Focal Electra 1038 be
  • Focal Sopra no. 2
  • PMC Twenty 24
  • PMC Twenty 26
  • PMC Fact 8

I mainly listen to classical (violin, piano, orchestra) and vocals (females and males)...occasionally other genres.

I have auditioned Focal Electra 1028, Sopra 2 and 1 and PMC 23 (not 24) driven by two monoblocs of Devialet 800. Although I do not know whether the Devialets were set to match with the Focals, I've found all the Focal more musical with a larger soundstage and better instrument separations and dynamic than the PMC while the PMC sounds cleaner, more precise with imaging and likely true to recordings. Between the 1028 and Sopra 2, I've found the Sopra 2 to have less harsh treble and to be better overall.

i) I wonder how you guys think of these Focal and PMC speakers given the music genres I listen to?
ii) What do you think is an appropriate room size that I should consider moving from the 1028 to 1038? Regardless of room size, do you find a noticeable improvement in sound quality when compare the 1028 vs 1038?
iii) For those who have listened to both the Electra and Sopra, do you find it worthwhile to upgrade?
iv) Do you think that the Devialet 200 would be a good match for either the Electra or Sopra? What other all in one options would you consider?
v) Would you pick any PMC speakers over the Electra or Sopra and why?

Thanks so much guys! It's a long post for the first post and I do appreciate your time and help!
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post #7110 of 7110 Unread Today, 03:27 PM
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I dont have any experience with PMC sadly.

I have however owned the Sopra no 2's for 6 months now, and im always thinking about upgrading/downgrading most of my rig.
...Except my Sopras.
I still find them fantastic and enjoy them for several hours each day.

My current rig is a Arc ref 5 SE, an ATI 6003 and a Lumin T1.
Fantastic imaging, 3d soundstage and a perfect combo between musicality and huge detailed sound.

Sometimes I play around and hook them up to my Anthem AVR for fun without anything else. Still sounds fantastic.

I also own the 1008 BE's for surround, and sometimes hook them up as my main speakers with a very good sub for some monitor/sub music fun.
It sounds very good, but the Sopras is in another league with a much bigger soundstage.
The comparison would be that the 1008's sound great but compared to the Sopras they sound like a "speaker".
The Sopras disappears completely into my room.

I can highly recommend these speakers and find them a relative bargain compared to what I have listened to in the same price range.

I have found them to need a bit of careful placement to shine the most, which took me alot of time, but my room is not optimal even though its treated with basstraps etc.

I would not use Devialet to power them, as they dont really need a whole lot of power, but would rather invest in good room treatment and something a bit cheaper.
Im using ATI amps for a great bang for the buck and sound.

Good luck.
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