Originally Posted by mcreyn
As you said, your concern is loud undistorted sound. In that case, Just find some horn speakers and get a $400 receiver. You will have the spls, reasonable accuracy, and objective qualities you seek.
For some of us, audio involves more than obtaining 115 dbs at our listening position. Even many of the users here acknowledge that the reference level for films is far too loud for them and they listen at 8-15 dbs below reference.
There is far more to audio reproduction than spl and frequency response. Phase response, on and off axis distribution, cabinet resonance, and a plethora of things we still do not understand affect how speakers sound.
Buying audio components by specs alone is like buying a car based on specs alone; it gives you an idea of the product, but really does give you the subjective feel.
If you truely know the ins/outs of speaker design then measurements and accurate specs do allow for some of the best HT designs period. There isnt much that isnt known in the world of speaker design. We can measure far more then we can ever hear and I have never heard a good sound speaker that measured poorly. Quality measurements have to exist for a speaker to sound great (bad measurements = zero probability of quality sound, quality measurements = high probability of quality sound)
Im not talking about low cost speakers here either. My drivers cost more alone then what most of the popular speakers cost and if I had to purchase my speaker designs as a comercial choice it would cost a lot more then Vandersteen.
Im not into the flawed idea of subjectivity. I can buy a car online without hesitation if the looks, history, specs, price meet my requirements. I have rented probably 400 cars in my life so I already know how most drive anyways.
Yes the user has a big room; mine is bigger. Despite that, the little maggie mg12s and velodyne hgs10 are plenty for me. No, I don't listen to classical, mostly rock, but find 105 db peaks quite loud. Similarly in my old house, my living room system in a 7000 cu ft room did just fine with a pair of vandersteen 1cs. Bottom line, not all are looking for 115db peaks. Heck the guys with quads are happy if they can get 98 dbs out of them. N
If your room is bigger then his (His is HUGE) then its a simple fact that any movie you are listening too will have distorted sound during peaks. This happens in movies more then anyone thinks (very few people understand this or have enough training to hear it). You listen to Rock too (so do I). You are missing out on having clean dynamics. This has nothing to do with listening loud either.
Have you ever put speakers in your room that have very clean peaks?? Maggies are the worst distortion speakers I have heard, they have very limited dynamic peak potential and I have heard many, many designs. I will say that for listening under 10 feet and at normal levels the Maggies are pretty damn cool but this is HT and that room is huge. You need better speakers to do HT correctly. The science dictates that, no subjectivity in the world can bypass simple numbers.
bottom line if people want no distortion when they listen to anything they need to do all the scientific calculations. Its not that hard at all. Ignoring them just seems silly to me.