The gear I'm using with these:55" LG 55LH90 TV
Pioneer VSX-919AH receiver
BIC DV62CLRS speakers (24" speaker stands R/L, 10" stand center)
Optimus LX5-II surround speakers with dipole tweeter
Cambridge Soundworks PSW1 subwoofer
Magnavox blu-ray player
I ran my initial setup using Pioneer's MCACC auto-calibration. I then tested the calibration and how well it matched up the front channels to my rear speakers. The MCACC, while having done a "decent" job, really didn't match the sound up. I tested this by connecting a 2-channel music input to the analog 5.1 inputs on the back of the receiver and setting it to play the external analog inputs.
I set the analog cables to play the left-front and the right/rear speakers only in stereo from the CD player. The fronts and rears definitely didn't sound like a matched pair.
So, I went into the calibration menu and manually adjusted the EQ by hand, having to painstakingly go into and out of the menu to listen to my results one speaker at a time. First I set the rears to sound good on the music CD. Then I did the front-right/left DV62CLR's. Then I kept switching back and forth between the rear and front left channels until they both sounded virtually identical. Then I mirrored the results with the speakers on the other side.
Finally, I plugged in the right-front and left-rear speakers and played 2-channel music and EUREKA! They sounded like a virtually matched pair in stereo music. I swapped each channel on the front and matched it to each rear speaker and it was like listening to matched pairs all around.
Having FINALLY calibrated all the speakers over a 4-hour period, I popped in a test movie. Casino Royale.
I evaluated the speakers with both music and with one movie so far.
My opinion? They sound really, really "soft". I don't mean they are low-volume/low-efficiency. I mean they sound very smooth and I had to boost 1KHz - 2.5KHz range heavily in my tuning to get the sound somewhere near normal. I think the issue could be that the woofer's xover is at 3.5KHz and that means the tweeter isn't playing much below 3KHz. I bet the off-axis response from 1.5KHz to 2.8KHz on a graph would look pretty bad if the drastic EQ boost is any indication here. I bet a small soft dome midrange could have been added to this speaker to handle 1.5KHz to 3.5KHz. This would have likely make a nice 3-way system.
The tweeter sounds exceptionally airy and there is an almost etched detail around everything in the mix. With these speakers, if you want to focus on any particular sound in the mix, you should be able to hear it. In fact "audible depth of mix" is one of my major examination inquiries when listening to a speaker. This speaker gives a 10 out of 10 in that category. In reference to this speaker's "sound", in order to get my rear speakers to sound "matched", I had to set the EQ to +3db @ 8KHz and +6.5db at 16KHz. This is of course AFTER I already set the DV62CLRS to a -2.5db @ 8KHz and -4.5db @ 16KHz so that they would sound balanced on the music in my room.
So, it's not a stretch to label the DV62CLRS as a "bright" speaker. That may explain their rather "airy" sound. However, it's a very "smooth" brightness to the tweeter, which is probably why nobody complains about them being harsh.
The imaging of the speaker is a bit odd. I ran through the standard 2-channel phase test and everything sounded like it should however, the "out of phase" ("lost in the room" part of the 2-channel test on Joe Kane's HDTV calibration blu ray) gave a kind of strange sound for it's "out of phase" test. The sound while "out of phase" wasn't "full" but rather "transparent/empty" and not in a positive way like the classic positive audiophile terminology. The "phantom center" produced in 2-channel mode was very good. It produced a solid monaural sound right in the middle of the speakers.
When the phase test was conducted with all my speakers from front to back, it was perfect imaging all around. Where the Joe Kane DVD indicated the sound should "seem" to eminate from, is exactly where I heard it. This is AFTER my intense calibration, so I must have really hit the nail on the head with my manual adjustments. I didn't mess up either phase or the balance of the sound between channels. In fact, they matched better after my calibration than speakers I've previously heard (from other systems at the store and in other houses) which are supposed to be a matching set and cost thousands of bucks. Granted these speakers all have polypropylene material on the cones and tweets, so it follows they had a chance from the get-go to matchup in character after some EQ work.
The Pioneer MCACC's EQ is amazing and if I can match up these "polypropylene" speakers to each other, then it's a probability other people can do something similar with this receiver. It's one powerful tool and does a great job of calibrating a speaker system. The manual controls make it so you can really fine tune things for YOUR ears and your own tastes. I'm absolutely sure the MCACC "auto tune" is good but it doesn't match speakers up very well. I was able to manually tune in a matching EQ curve.
Music sounds great. Particularly classical. The mix is smooth and I can hear all the instruments but something seems "dead". Something is missing that gives perfect speaker sound it's defining character. These speakers sound like, cotton candy. Fluff supreme. Overly smooth with nicely detailed highs. The dynamics are merely average. I think they may need more watts on them than what the VSX-919AH put on them.
I can tell you for certain these speakers are easy on the ears. Very easy to listen to and non-fatiguing. They lack "shout". What I mean by that is when a singer "belts" a loud dynamic passage they seem to not get loud enough. I will double check my receiver settings tonight to verify no dynamic range settings were accidentally on. So, if there is such a thing as "too sweet" (highs) and "too soft" (mids), these speakers seem to be that way when the highs are toned down to a more balanced sound. Remember, this is even AFTER I bumped DOWN the highs and balanced the sound, they are STILL sweet and soft.
This is a great speaker for softening up hard sounding vinyl records or helping out poor recordings but it doesn't seem to expose bad recordings and lacks some dynamic range. It's a nice speaker and I'm still evaluating them and they may need break-in time from what I've read, but so far they seem to be showing what I expected they may sound like.
I was originally concerned about the resonant cabinets but they don't have any resonance I can hear so far with music playback despite failing the knock test.