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post #121 of 6914 Old 10-12-2007, 06:07 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by drhack View Post

Great thread!

There seem to be a lot of meets for HT, but not for audio - interested in doing one. I am in Chicago area as well with Aerial 7bs if you want to audition. I would love to listen to treemed's Amati.

Wow, that would be really cool! Thanks! We'll have to get together sometime soon.

All right, this weekend begins the re-start of my "journey." If I have the time (sure hope I do) I will be heading out to 2 shops to audition Martin Logan, Monitor Audio, Sonus Faber, Vienna Acoustics, Linn and Vandersteen (the later just because I will use it as a reference to be sure I am still in love with their sound).

Thank you all so much for sharing your experiences and recommendations. And thank you to those that PM'ed me as well. Wish me luck folks!!

My journey to find the "perfect" speaker
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post #122 of 6914 Old 10-12-2007, 08:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Nuance View Post

Wow, that would be really cool! Thanks! We'll have to get together sometime soon.

All right, this weekend begins the re-start of my "journey." If I have the time (sure hope I do) I will be heading out to 2 shops to audition Martin Logan, Monitor Audio, Sonus Faber, Vienna Acoustics, Linn and Vandersteen (the later just because I will use it as a reference to be sure I am still in love with their sound).

Thank you all so much for sharing your experiences and recommendations. And thank you to those that PM'ed me as well. Wish me luck folks!!

No Aerial dealers nearby or are you going to wait for a GTG with the nearby owner?

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post #123 of 6914 Old 10-12-2007, 10:49 AM
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So, Brandon, have you established a price range yet?

John
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post #124 of 6914 Old 10-12-2007, 10:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Mudslide View Post

No Aerial dealers nearby or are you going to wait for a GTG with the nearby owner?

After hearing the Era Design D4's and D5's, and learning that their lineage is related to Aerial, I would definitely add Aerial to my/your list.

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post #125 of 6914 Old 10-12-2007, 03:41 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Mudslide View Post

No Aerial dealers nearby or are you going to wait for a GTG with the nearby owner?

There are no Aerial dealers, no. But I am certainly not going to let that stop me. I will definitely take drhack up on his offer as soon as my schedule (and his) allows. I am going to look to see where the closest Aerial dealer is to me.
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So, Brandon, have you established a price range yet?

Well...I guess I would like to stay in the $4000 ballpark for the fronts. If they captivate me, I will save the money. Of course, if I can find something that captivates for less money - even better (obviously)!
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After hearing the Era Design D4's and D5's, and learning that their lineage is related to Aerial, I would definitely add Aerial to my/your list.

Thank you, Curtis. I always value your opinion.

Well, today has been ruled out for auditioning because my wife ended up having to work late. So I am off to go hang out with my adorable little 18 month year old daughter. I'll update you all later this weekend (hopefully I get some face time with the previous brands mentioned).

Thanks all!

My journey to find the "perfect" speaker
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No matter what measurements tell us, a loudspeaker isn’t good until it
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post #126 of 6914 Old 10-12-2007, 03:43 PM
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Enjoy your weekend and have a blast auditioning!!

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they're not just for breakfast anymore.
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post #127 of 6914 Old 10-15-2007, 06:16 PM
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I can relate to the anal audiophile thing since I was about 17 I have always been enthralled with loudspeakers. I used to spend days and evenings visiting various stereo places racking up hours at each place auditioning speakers such as Klipsch (the real ones), Magnepans, Scotts, Utahs, B&W, Vandy's, Energys, Advents, Thiel etc. I ended up purchasing Utah, Scott, Klipsch Heresy and LaScalas, Energy, and currently own Linn Keiidh. I have to admit there are others I still want such as Maggies and Vandys and through all these years (I am 53 years old) I do not think you can say there is a perfect speaker. There are too many that sound so good and not just the real expensive ones. Also as one ages so does their hearing, I find I enjoy more quieter passages in music and look for subtleness that I never considered in my younger years. Also I have realized that the source has a lot more to do with a speakers performance than I would have recognized years ago. So I guess there are many ways one can go when pursuing the so called perfection they are looking for, just remember to enjoy the journey and stay excited about the possibilities.

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post #128 of 6914 Old 10-15-2007, 09:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Erniek View Post

I can relate to the anal audiophile thing since I was about 17 I have always been enthralled with loudspeakers. I used to spend days and evenings visiting various stereo places racking up hours at each place auditioning speakers such as Klipsch (the real ones), Magnepans, Scotts, Utahs, B&W, Vandy's, Energys, Advents, Thiel etc. I ended up purchasing Utah, Scott, Klipsch Heresy and LaScalas, Energy, and currently own Linn Keiidh. I have to admit there are others I still want such as Maggies and Vandys and through all these years (I am 53 years old) I do not think you can say there is a perfect speaker. There are too many that sound so good and not just the real expensive ones. Also as one ages so does their hearing, I find I enjoy more quieter passages in music and look for subtleness that I never considered in my younger years. Also I have realized that the source has a lot more to do with a speakers performance than I would have recognized years ago. So I guess there are many ways one can go when pursuing the so called perfection they are looking for, just remember to enjoy the journey and stay excited about the possibilities.

Ernie

Ernie - Well said. I too got the audiophile bug in my teens, though only over the past 10 years have I had the income to actively pursue putting a high-quality system together. I started searching for the "perfect speaker" about four years ago, going through many different makes and models along the way. I owned some for as little as a few months, but about two years ago I found some that seemed to get the most right in the areas of sound quality that were important to me at the time. Now, current day I find that my values have changed so I started the search again. I recently picked some speakers that I think I'll be happy with for a while, but you mentioned an area that I haven't had much luck in, and that is the "source". (Assuming that you mean front-end gear and not the recording.) I certainly understand and have experienced the importance of a great recording, but I have limted experience and equally limted success with front-end gear. The couple of times I made the plunge and bought relatively expensive and well-regarded seperates, I came away feeling that there was no perceptible gain in sound quality over my existing AVR. Now granted, I have the top of the line Denon AVR, but I was surprised that spending three times as much on seperates resulted in so little change. What sort of experience can you share with me in this area. What am I missing?
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post #129 of 6914 Old 10-15-2007, 09:52 PM
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Ernie - Well said. I too got the audiophile bug in my teens, though only over the past 10 years have I had the income to actively pursue putting a high-quality system together. I started searching for the "perfect speaker" about four years ago, going through many different makes and models along the way. I owned some for as little as a few months, but about two years ago I found some that seemed to get the most right in the areas of sound quality that were important to me at the time. Now, current day I find that my values have changed so I started the search again. I recently picked some speakers that I think I'll be happy with for a while, but you mentioned an area that I haven't had much luck in, and that is the "source". (Assuming that you mean front-end gear and not the recording.) I certainly understand and have experienced the importance of a great recording, but I have limted experience and equally limted success with front-end gear. The couple of times I made the plunge and bought relatively expensive and well-regarded seperates, I came away feeling that there was no perceptible gain in sound quality over my existing AVR. Now granted, I have the top of the line Denon AVR, but I was surprised that spending three times as much on seperates resulted in so little change. What sort of experience can you share with me in this area. What am I missing?

I've gotta agree with you, Sponge. I've run lots of gear on the front end. As long as there is sufficient power to handle the dynamic transients...they've all performed the same for me. Watts are watts. Digital signals are pretty much just digital signals. (Tubes and DACs might be a little different story.) But modern SS receivers and amps are pretty much auditory-level distortion-free.

(Well, I hope that doesn't get me in trouble with the Golden Ear crowd or with ThoseWhoLikeToArgue, lol. Let's keep this quiet little thread to ourselves, heh heh.)

Brandon...how went this weekend's auditioning? Did you get to listen to anything?

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post #130 of 6914 Old 10-15-2007, 10:18 PM
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I've gotta agree with you, Sponge. I've run lots of gear on the front end. As long as there is sufficient power to handle the dynamic transients...they've all performed the same for me. Watts are watts. Digital signals are pretty much just digital signals. (Tubes and DACs might be a little different story.) But modern SS receivers and amps are pretty much auditory-level distortion-free.

(Well, I hope that doesn't get me in trouble with the Golden Ear crowd or with ThoseWhoLikeToArgue, lol. Let's keep this quiet little thread to ourselves, heh heh.)

Brad...how went this weekend's auditioning? Did you get to listen to anything?

Mudslide -

Thanks for sharing your experience. Logically thinking, there is no reason why amps should sound different as long as they have flat FR (they all appear to), less than 1% THD (they all do), a low noise floor (many do), and they are not being overdriven. And as I stated in my response to Ernie, my practical experience with different amps has also shown this to be true. Now some may say that I went into my auditions expecting not to hear a difference, and that bias colored my perception. However, I can honestly say that I expected just the opposite. I expected to hear an improvement, I wanted to hear an improvement. Surely the 3X difference in price had to be justified. I listened intently, hoping that a new amp would get me that much closer to that illusion of reality we audiophiles seek, but it just didn't happen.

I'll continue to keep an open mind on the subject, and I'll continue to experiment, but I have to say that it has been rather disappointing. This hobby would be more fun if better sound were attained through more than the speakers, the room and the recording.
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post #131 of 6914 Old 10-16-2007, 08:47 AM
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Mudslide -
This hobby would be more fun if better sound were attained through more than the speakers, the room and the recording.

Well...there could be a lovely nekkid lady appear whenever the receiver gets "turned on". I think THAT would improve the sound for me AND justify the 3X price point.

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post #132 of 6914 Old 10-16-2007, 10:02 AM
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Thanks man. I have already added Revel to my list. I have heard their older F30's and loved them. It's too bad they replaced them with the F32 which has smaller drivers. Nonetheless, I will be taking a trip south to listen to some more Revel's again.

Just to chime in quickly, don't let the smaller drivers on the F32's turn you off. The F30's had impressively deep and clean bass, but the F32's are still pretty damn respectable. My experience has been that they can get down into the mid 20Hz range before they really start rolling off. They unquestionably have more bass control and extension than the F12's that I had previously and they have 2x 8" drivers.

Edit: Also, just FYI, the F32's are not particularly efficient (I think ~86db)...so dunno how much that's going to matter to you.


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post #133 of 6914 Old 10-16-2007, 10:56 AM
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Well...there could be a lovely nekkid lady appear whenever the receiver gets "turned on". I think THAT would improve the sound for me AND justify the 3X price point.

Yeah, that amp would be a keeper, even at 3X the price!
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post #134 of 6914 Old 10-16-2007, 05:24 PM
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What happened to Nuance? - was expecting to hear some auditioning experiences.

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post #135 of 6914 Old 10-16-2007, 05:45 PM
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I have seen the light!
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post #136 of 6914 Old 10-16-2007, 06:10 PM
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I have seen the light!

????
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post #137 of 6914 Old 10-16-2007, 06:19 PM
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What happened to Nuance? - was expecting to hear some auditioning experiences.

My thoughts exactly! I just read this thread because I'm undertaking the same quest and am anxiously waiting some more info.
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post #138 of 6914 Old 10-16-2007, 08:39 PM
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My thoughts exactly! I just read this thread because I'm undertaking the same quest and am anxiously waiting some more info.

I'm very concerned for Brandon. He has closed his contact link. He was needlessly abused in another thread and maybe just gave up on all of us. I'd hate to think that happened. But a number of AVS members have a way of discouraging participation.

I hope all is okay with him and he will come back to us. We're not all on the evil Dark Side............

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post #139 of 6914 Old 10-16-2007, 09:01 PM
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Ernie - Well said. I too got the audiophile bug in my teens, though only over the past 10 years have I had the income to actively pursue putting a high-quality system together. I started searching for the "perfect speaker" about four years ago, going through many different makes and models along the way. I owned some for as little as a few months, but about two years ago I found some that seemed to get the most right in the areas of sound quality that were important to me at the time. Now, current day I find that my values have changed so I started the search again. I recently picked some speakers that I think I'll be happy with for a while, but you mentioned an area that I haven't had much luck in, and that is the "source". (Assuming that you mean front-end gear and not the recording.) I certainly understand and have experienced the importance of a great recording, but I have limted experience and equally limted success with front-end gear. The couple of times I made the plunge and bought relatively expensive and well-regarded seperates, I came away feeling that there was no perceptible gain in sound quality over my existing AVR. Now granted, I have the top of the line Denon AVR, but I was surprised that spending three times as much on seperates resulted in so little change. What sort of experience can you share with me in this area. What am I missing?

What volume do you listen at?

For oncert-level listening you should have several hundred pounds of speakers and amps in the front of your room. If your not trying to replicate a performance, then yea ... the Denon may be fine.
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post #140 of 6914 Old 10-16-2007, 09:55 PM
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So, I'm finally back from Rocky Mountain Audio Fest in Colorado and there were so many things going on there that I need a few days just to settle my impressions, not to say go through hundreds of brochures and notes I took. Maybe I need to augment my profession and add audio journalism, as it seems I was more active than some journalists there.

But since some were awaiting my report on Podium Sound speakers I'll report on that first. Of course there were many reasons to attend the show this year, but this new company was one of those that got my serious attention because of a few reports I read in the last few months. I promised very honest, non-biased report and that's what you will get.

I'm posting this report on another speaker thread as well, and there was at least one person on that thread (incidentally a dealer of another speaker brand; how interesting ) who really wanted to hear that they are not as good as I expected. To his credit I'll say, and as an opening remark, no, they are not perfect speakers. It would be nice if someone came with a fairy tale kind of miracle and delivered speakers for $10k that would beat many megabucks lines. If I understood correctly they currently have three models, two smaller ones are $6k and $7$ and the larger one is over $10k but I don't know if exact price is set yet (my guess is around $12-14k. They are similar in midrange and treble performance; the difference being that the larger one produces better bass. I have heard in one of the rooms $250,000 Marten speakers and they are the best speakers I've ever heard in my life! Hey, they are $250 grand, with pure diamond tweeter and diamond midranges, just the drivers cost more than the whole Podium speaker.

So, they are great speakers and for $6-12k they offer incredibly good performance. There is a "but" here though. They sound so DIFFERENT than any other speaker ever made that it's impossible to say if you would like them or not. Now I completely understand a struggle for words that some journalists have expressed in their reviews.

I hope you won't mind if I divert for a moment to the latest review snippets before I continue with my impressions. This is educational, so it will be helpful to understand better the nature of this beast:

The vibrating element of the Podium 1 is a single panel. The vibrating element is very similar in many ways to the soundboard of a piano or the body of a stringed instrument (violin, guitar...).

There is another aspect to the music that Podium Sound panels make that is unique. They do not cut off at high frequencies as almost any other speaker does. When first encountered, they seem to sound sharp and bright. After just a few minutes, this impression disappears and a sensation of naturalness and realness takes over.

We learned that there is an adaptation curve for these speakers as well. When you arrive from a coned loudspeaker, you must get used to the diffuseness.

Next we learned that the Podium Sound Model 1 is an instrument and not a speaker per se.

Is this a speaker for all purposes? Definitely not. The speaker has a strong mind of its own. It is an absolute killer with classical music. The ability these speakers have to convey the emotion of the music is unique. Probably due to its diffuseness of sound, the sense of listening to a mechanical speaker is completely transcended. You listen, feel and breathe music and you're part of it. The same goes for jazz where big band arrangements are produced with such involvement and small trio settings are playing just for you. Voices too are a strong point of these bending-wave transformers. Single voices like the mother of Roberto Fonseca in "Misa Popular" on Zamazu are so realistic just as are the male voices of the Hilliard Ensemble on Jan Garbarek's Officium. These are all genres where acoustic instruments are involved. When switching to rock, blues or electric jazz, the Podium Sounds hold to their character. When the recording has embedded emotion, it will be released into the listening room. If the recording lacks this ingredient, the reproduction is not worth listening to. A maker or breaker of loudspeakers is Pat Metheny's "The Roots of Coincidence" from Imaginary Day. The only genres not suited for these loudspeakers are those that are based on electronic bass. Techno, house, rap and that kind of music should be played back over different loudspeakers.

While comparing speakers, did we like the Podium Sounds more than for instance the Quad ESL 2905? It's hard to compare apples and pears. With the ESL and the Model One being in the same price league, we personally would opt for the Podium Model One.

It must be clear that we are very charmed with this loudspeaker. We fear that when the Japanese audio lovers get word of these creations, Shelley Katz has to expand his production capacity. Is the Model 1 the perfect loudspeaker? No, it is not but it has so many strong points that the few weaker points like the way the extreme highs are dealt with are no objection to the possibilities the speaker shows when it comes to revealing the inner core of the music played - the emotion.

Was I charmed with these speakers? Yes and no. My ambivalence was present throughout the show (I went to their room a few times for fairly good listening time). There were moments where I thought I buy the concept and this is IT, I want them! But I would frequently go to other rooms and dynamic speakers would speak to me in a different way, the way I'm more used to all these years. They DEFFINITELY have adaptation curve. I wouldn't be surprised if staying just with them for a few days would change my perspective.

The speakers certainly have charms in a sense of not having traditional point source character. You can walk anywhere in the room, and the sound is practically the same. For that reason, even that they say they would be great for classical, voices and acoustic in general, I think they would be great for home theater! There are no other speakers on the market that can make such a uniquely diffuse sound. Watching movie, I think it can make a great enveloping sound that most videophiles would kill to have.

There were two things that were working against my unconditional acceptance.

1) One is the fact that they had no acoustical treatments whatsoever. Just about every other room had moderate to heavy acoustical treatment. Those that had, sounded in general much better than rooms without treatment. Hotel rooms are notorious for bad sound. I feel if Podium had at least some treatment, they would sound better and tame some of the higher frequencies.

2) They used solid state electronics from Behold. Personally, I'm not impressed with solid state amplifications in general. I'm a tube guy. And then, I don't remember ever hearing Behold electronics that impressed me. The sound was a bit bright on the top end of the spectrum, and I'm VERY sensitive to this region. The room without treatments will make that region particularly vulnerable, so those two combinations are deadly in my book.

So to summarize this, I liked the way they presented diffuse soundstage. I liked the way how they sounded seamless from top to bottom. I didn't like slight brightness on top.
Could I live with them? I honestly don't know. I will most likely get a pair soon and audition them in my house with my electronics.

If anyone wishes to hear them, let me know, I'll try to arrange for listening session.
They are certainly very unusual, one of a kind speaker with great qualities. I'm very curious how they are going to sound in my room with my system. Maybe my objections will disappear. We'll see
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post #141 of 6914 Old 10-16-2007, 09:57 PM
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What volume do you listen at?

For oncert-level listening you should have several hundred pounds of speakers and amps in the front of your room. If your not trying to replicate a performance, then yea ... the Denon may be fine.

My max volume is right around 95-100dB, but more typically 85-90dB but I wasn't able to push these levels any higher with a more powerful amp. The sound still became agressive and uncomfortable.
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post #142 of 6914 Old 10-17-2007, 04:40 AM
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Originally Posted by Mudslide View Post

I'm very concerned for Brandon. He has closed his contact link. He was needlessly abused in another thread and maybe just gave up on all of us. I'd hate to think that happened. But a number of AVS members have a way of discouraging participation.

I hope all is okay with him and he will come back to us. We're not all on the evil Dark Side............

He was banned until today according to a post he made on AV123. Something about calling other members dumb too many times. I'm sure he'll be back.

http://av123forum.com/showpost.php?p...7&postcount=79

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post #143 of 6914 Old 10-17-2007, 05:49 AM
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My max volume is right around 95-100dB, but more typically 85-90dB but I wasn't able to push these levels any higher with a more powerful amp. The sound still became agressive and uncomfortable.

with leaps in dynamic range being such as they are, you still need a lot of power at those levels.

another piece of marketing material, brought to you buy your "friend" in cyber-space.
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post #144 of 6914 Old 10-17-2007, 06:22 AM
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So, I'm finally back from Rocky Mountain Audio Fest in Colorado and there were so many things going on there that I need a few days just to settle my impressions, not to say go through hundreds of brochures and notes I took. Maybe I need to augment my profession and add audio journalism, as it seems I was more active than some journalists there.

But since some were awaiting my report on Podium Sound speakers I'll report on that first. Of course there were many reasons to attend the show this year, but this new company was one of those that got my serious attention because of a few reports I read in the last few months. I promised very honest, non-biased report and that's what you will get.

I'm posting this report on another speaker thread as well, and there was at least one person on that thread (incidentally a dealer of another speaker brand; how interesting ) who really wanted to hear that they are not as good as I expected. To his credit I'll say, and as an opening remark, no, they are not perfect speakers. It would be nice if someone came with a fairy tale kind of miracle and delivered speakers for $10k that would beat many megabucks lines. If I understood correctly they currently have three models, two smaller ones are $6k and $7$ and the larger one is over $10k but I don't know if exact price is set yet (my guess is around $12-14k. They are similar in midrange and treble performance; the difference being that the larger one produces better bass. I have heard in one of the rooms $250,000 Marten speakers and they are the best speakers I've ever heard in my life! Hey, they are $250 grand, with pure diamond tweeter and diamond midranges, just the drivers cost more than the whole Podium speaker.

So, they are great speakers and for $6-12k they offer incredibly good performance. There is a "but" here though. They sound so DIFFERENT than any other speaker ever made that it's impossible to say if you would like them or not. Now I completely understand a struggle for words that some journalists have expressed in their reviews.

I hope you won't mind if I divert for a moment to the latest review snippets before I continue with my impressions. This is educational, so it will be helpful to understand better the nature of this beast:

The vibrating element of the Podium 1 is a single panel. The vibrating element is very similar in many ways to the soundboard of a piano or the body of a stringed instrument (violin, guitar...).

There is another aspect to the music that Podium Sound panels make that is unique. They do not cut off at high frequencies as almost any other speaker does. When first encountered, they seem to sound sharp and bright. After just a few minutes, this impression disappears and a sensation of naturalness and realness takes over.

We learned that there is an adaptation curve for these speakers as well. When you arrive from a coned loudspeaker, you must get used to the diffuseness.

Next we learned that the Podium Sound Model 1 is an instrument and not a speaker per se.

Is this a speaker for all purposes? Definitely not. The speaker has a strong mind of its own. It is an absolute killer with classical music. The ability these speakers have to convey the emotion of the music is unique. Probably due to its diffuseness of sound, the sense of listening to a mechanical speaker is completely transcended. You listen, feel and breathe music and you're part of it. The same goes for jazz where big band arrangements are produced with such involvement and small trio settings are playing just for you. Voices too are a strong point of these bending-wave transformers. Single voices like the mother of Roberto Fonseca in "Misa Popular" on Zamazu are so realistic just as are the male voices of the Hilliard Ensemble on Jan Garbarek's Officium. These are all genres where acoustic instruments are involved. When switching to rock, blues or electric jazz, the Podium Sounds hold to their character. When the recording has embedded emotion, it will be released into the listening room. If the recording lacks this ingredient, the reproduction is not worth listening to. A maker or breaker of loudspeakers is Pat Metheny's "The Roots of Coincidence" from Imaginary Day. The only genres not suited for these loudspeakers are those that are based on electronic bass. Techno, house, rap and that kind of music should be played back over different loudspeakers.

While comparing speakers, did we like the Podium Sounds more than for instance the Quad ESL 2905? It's hard to compare apples and pears. With the ESL and the Model One being in the same price league, we personally would opt for the Podium Model One.

It must be clear that we are very charmed with this loudspeaker. We fear that when the Japanese audio lovers get word of these creations, Shelley Katz has to expand his production capacity. Is the Model 1 the perfect loudspeaker? No, it is not but it has so many strong points that the few weaker points like the way the extreme highs are dealt with are no objection to the possibilities the speaker shows when it comes to revealing the inner core of the music played - the emotion.

Was I charmed with these speakers? Yes and no. My ambivalence was present throughout the show (I went to their room a few times for fairly good listening time). There were moments where I thought I buy the concept and this is IT, I want them! But I would frequently go to other rooms and dynamic speakers would speak to me in a different way, the way I'm more used to all these years. They DEFFINITELY have adaptation curve. I wouldn't be surprised if staying just with them for a few days would change my perspective.

The speakers certainly have charms in a sense of not having traditional point source character. You can walk anywhere in the room, and the sound is practically the same. For that reason, even that they say they would be great for classical, voices and acoustic in general, I think they would be great for home theater! There are no other speakers on the market that can make such a uniquely diffuse sound. Watching movie, I think it can make a great enveloping sound that most videophiles would kill to have.

There were two things that were working against my unconditional acceptance.

1) One is the fact that they had no acoustical treatments whatsoever. Just about every other room had moderate to heavy acoustical treatment. Those that had, sounded in general much better than rooms without treatment. Hotel rooms are notorious for bad sound. I feel if Podium had at least some treatment, they would sound better and tame some of the higher frequencies.

2) They used solid state electronics from Behold. Personally, I'm not impressed with solid state amplifications in general. I'm a tube guy. And then, I don't remember ever hearing Behold electronics that impressed me. The sound was a bit bright on the top end of the spectrum, and I'm VERY sensitive to this region. The room without treatments will make that region particularly vulnerable, so those two combinations are deadly in my book.

So to summarize this, I liked the way they presented diffuse soundstage. I liked the way how they sounded seamless from top to bottom. I didn't like slight brightness on top.
Could I live with them? I honestly don't know. I will most likely get a pair soon and audition them in my house with my electronics.

If anyone wishes to hear them, let me know, I'll try to arrange for listening session.
They are certainly very unusual, one of a kind speaker with great qualities. I'm very curious how they are going to sound in my room with my system. Maybe my objections will disappear. We'll see

Thanks for the preliminary report. I just checked the dimensions of these Podiums and they are too wide for my HT.

Of the speakers mentioned earlier, which ones are the most forgiving in terms of wall placement? I can only put them a maximum of 2' from the back wall and even that is pushing it as I've got two kids running around in the basement and the farther out the speaker is from the wall the more chance for an accident. Right now, I've got Mirage Omni 60's mounted on the wall with the Omni CC and it's time for an upgrade. I am happy with the Mirage OM-R2's that I'm using for surround. Any other suggestions are certainly welcome.
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post #145 of 6914 Old 10-17-2007, 08:11 AM
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Thanks for the great review, Treemed67. There is much food for thought there.

EDIT: I had a similar reaction the first time I heard Martin Logans. I decided against the sharpness of clarity in their case. But the sound is compelling. Would you suggest that a panel loudspeaker shares the 'wall of sound' attributes you described with the Podiums?

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post #146 of 6914 Old 10-17-2007, 08:19 AM
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Originally Posted by tonygeno View Post

He was banned until today according to a post he made on AV123. Something about calling other members dumb too many times. I'm sure he'll be back.

http://av123forum.com/showpost.php?p...7&postcount=79

Thanks for the heads-up.

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post #147 of 6914 Old 10-17-2007, 10:10 AM
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I had a similar reaction the first time I heard Martin Logans. I decided against the sharpness of clarity in their case. But the sound is compelling. Would you suggest that a panel loudspeaker shares the 'wall of sound' attributes you described with the Podiums?

There is nothing you heard before that can compare to these speakers, for better or worse. I've heard Martin Logans many times before and never liked their sound. It's anemic to me. I'm still puzzled why people like those speakers. Yes, you get certain qualities that are attractive, as you get in all flat speakers regardless of technology, but larger Magnepans, Quads and Sound Lab sound to me much better than Martin Logans. With Podium there is no wall of sound, although you still hear where the sound is coming from, it doesn't have specificity of dynamic speakers or even other panel speakers. Yet, you still get soundstage and are aware where the instruments are. I know it sounds contradictory, but it is. In real life though, that's what you get. Podiums are in some way closer to real life music than any other speakers, yet I find myself craving for that artificial presentation of soundstage we get from established technologies.
Those are the reasons why I will most likely give them a chance to have them in my room.
I'm quite convinced that these would be perfect HT speakers, and possibly for classical and jazz music.

Ideally, it would be great to have these speakers in the same room with the same acoustical treatment, with something like Magnepan, and compare.
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post #148 of 6914 Old 10-17-2007, 10:40 AM
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Originally Posted by treemed67 View Post

There is nothing you heard before that can compare to these speakers, for better or worse. I've heard Martin Logans many times before and never liked their sound. It's anemic to me. I'm still puzzled why people like those speakers. Yes, you get certain qualities that are attractive, as you get in all flat speakers regardless of technology, but larger Magnepans, Quads and Sound Lab sound to me much better than Martin Logans. With Podium there is no wall of sound, although you still hear where the sound is coming from, it doesn't have specificity of dynamic speakers or even other panel speakers. Yet, you still get soundstage and are aware where the instruments are. I know it sounds contradictory, but it is. In real life though, that's what you get. Podiums are in some way closer to real life music than any other speakers, yet I find myself craving for that artificial presentation of soundstage we get from established technologies.
Those are the reasons why I will most likely give them a chance to have them in my room.
I'm quite convinced that these would be perfect HT speakers, and possibly for classical and jazz music.

Ideally, it would be great to have these speakers in the same room with the same acoustical treatment, with something like Magnepan, and compare.


I for one hope you get a set of these babies for your own edification...but please share with us the intimate comparisons with your current setup.

BTW, I don't like ML's. They bother my ears after a couple of minutes. The edge is too sharp. The only Maggies I ever heard were early models and were plain awful...and then there was my ex...named Maggie...UGHHHHHHH! I can't hear the name without tensing up...just a little, lol.

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post #149 of 6914 Old 10-17-2007, 10:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Mudslide View Post

I for one hope you get a set of these babies for your own edification...but please share with us the intimate comparisons with your current setup.

BTW, I don't like ML's. They bother my ears after a couple of minutes. The edge is too sharp. The only Maggies I ever heard were early models and were plain awful...and then there was my ex...named Maggie...UGHHHHHHH! I can't hear the name without tensing up...just a little, lol.

You know it's funny, because you are the first I have heard share my experience that there is a physical discomfort when listening to ML's. I actually owned a pair of the medium sized ML "Aeon's" a few years back. I bought them because in a short auditions they sounded good to me, and I thought they looked really cool. However, after owning them for a few months, I noticed that they really bothered my ears after even just a few minutes of listening. For me it wasn't a tonal balance issue though. Sure they would sound agressive in the treble if pushed, but the discomfort I felt was regardless of volume. This may sound strange, but it felt like they were causing pressure on my eardrums, much like when your ears become pressurized during a airplane flight. But man were they "transparent" on vocal tracks and small jazz ensembles.
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post #150 of 6914 Old 10-17-2007, 11:38 AM
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you mentioned an area that I haven't had much luck in, and that is the "source". (Assuming that you mean front)
...I have limted experience and equally limted success with front-end gear.

What have you tried so far, and what's your budget? And do you want strictly HT or two channel setup?
I find sometimes surprisingly little gain or difference between many components I tried, and I tried many. THERE ARE still components that will impress you and some that will blow your mind away. It's just that true jewels are so rare and not always correlated with the price that it's hard to find them.
It took my a looooong journey to settle on my current amp (Art Audio Adagio), and SACD/CD player (Audio Aero Prestige SACD). No preamp in my system as Prestige SACD has built in good tube preamp, so I go directly to amp. After so many hits and misses and subtle improvements, this combination is so clearly better than anything else I tried; I think even tone deaf person would recognize it.

Another case in point about differences and price points, just this weekend at RMAF in Colorado, there was a guy with a new company who is modifying CD players for about $2k. He was showcasing fairly inexpensive Denon universal player, which he modified and he was comparing it to EMM Labs $10k player and to Esoteric $14k model. He was using exactly the same cable and same CD, amplification, speakers; player alone was a variable.

I guess he was trying to point out how good his modification is, but I think poor guy, he must have very bad hearing. His modified Denon was so aweful in sound, grainy, closed in, brittle, I could hardly wait for for even a minute to pass. Then he switched to EMM Labs, and suddenly as all the heavens broke lose. I've never heard in my life clearer, more relaxed digital sound, well digital or analog. It was as if someone swithced to the best mastered virgin vinyl on $100k analog system. But it was just Ed Meitner SACD/CD. I was impressed!
Now the funny thing is next room was Esoteric Audio room and he invited one of the top gun guys from that company to listen to this presentation. So it was three of us sitting quietly, doors closed, totally focused moment.
It was obvious that this Esoteric guy heard all the differences as he was quiet, especially when he switched from EMM Labs to $14k Esoteric.

I fully expected that Esoteric being more expensive, plus this is their top model gear, would sound even better, or at least not worse than EMM.
I couldn't be more surprised when Esoteric was woefully behind. It was not nearly as bad as practically unlistenable Denon, but it was so much behind EMM that I was startled! It was as if someone put a blanket or pillow on both speakers, I was agape, I couldn't believe the difference in sound can be so great between two source components. We went back and forth for the good 15 minutes, between vocal, saxophone, band, and each time there was startling clarity coming out of EMM. Saxophone on Esoteric sounded muted, muffled; on EMM it was crystal clear, with all the rich timbre you expect from live instrument. This was the clearest presentation ever between two source components and truly shocking; probably qualifies for the greatest surprise at this show, or any show I attended.

Now, I clearly have no vested interest to praise EMM. I've never heard before neither EMM nor Esoteric in a controlled environment. Also my Audio Aero is so good sounding, by far the best I've ever heard in my room, that I'm curious now how it would fare compared directly to EMM Labs.

But the point is hifisponge, that the source components do sound different, don't give up, although I agree you have to dig a lot to sift through all "me to" products to find the right one. If you heard my system, I'm pretty confident you would be impressed. I know because it took me a lot of patience, money and time to come to this. Believe me, I understand your "pain." I've been through that. And still, I'm not done yet. I'm looking for beter cables, my acoustics in this house are FAR from perfect. But I can't change it in my current situation. I need a new turntable as well.

As much as this show presentation impressed me, I'm shocked how many components are out there that are very expensive and totally mediocre sounding. This hobby seems to attract enthusiasts, but also people who are trying to make a buck and think it's enough to slap $10k price so people will take you seriously. I've seen a great share of those very mediocre components and makes me sick how expensive they are with no benefits whatsoever in sound quality.
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