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Floorstanders or monitors at $3-5k/pr - Page 2

post #31 of 104
It's a totally valid point. If you want to fill a large room with clean, undistorted reference level sound then you need a speaker that gets loud with little power. Less sensitive speakers will hit the limits of their excursion way before reaching reference at the LP. Then you're in the same boat. Major distortion.
post #32 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by flyng_fool View Post

It's a totally valid point. If you want to fill a large room with clean, undistorted reference level sound then you need a speaker that gets loud with little power. Less sensitive speakers will hit the limits of their excursion way before reaching reference at the LP. Then you're in the same boat. Major distortion.

Well remember, my initial argument had to do with sound quality. Under normal conditions, it applies just fine. The person I was responding too was not being specific about what size room he was referring too.

So yes, in a large room, high-sensitivity is the way to go. As far as average sized rooms go, it's fair game.

- Kh[a]os
post #33 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by Khaos View Post

We are in a thread where the OP is looking for speakers in the 3k-5k range. If the OP does not have a good amplifier, he should not be investing in speakers at this price point.

Disagree. A plain AVR is enough for high-sensitivity speakers if they don't have weird impedance. If you start the game with a 15 dB head start, then giving 5 away in amplification won't kill you.
post #34 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by Khaos View Post

Well remember, my initial argument had to do with sound quality. Under normal conditions, it applies just fine. The person I was responding too was not being specific about what size room he was referring too.

If that person was me, I only started this because of the implication that high-sensivity equaled to less-musical.
post #35 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by psgcdn View Post

Sorry, I looked up the plain Sierra.

Well, you implied it came at a cost of being less musical. I disagree. A lot. I spend hours listening to stereo music at low levels on my high sensitivity speakers.

If they make you happy that's all that matters.
post #36 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by Khaos View Post

Well remember, my initial argument had to do with sound quality. Under normal conditions, it applies just fine. The person I was responding too was not being specific about what size room he was referring too.

So yes, in a large room, high-sensitivity is the way to go. As far as average sized rooms go, it's fair game.

- Kh[a]os

I'll buy that.
post #37 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nuance View Post

Good point: what does he mean by "crank it?"

saeyedoc,

Will you be listening at 90+ dB and watching movies at reference levels? If so go with something high sensitivity. You'll lose musical performance going that route, but they'll play very loud without distortion.

Dynamic peaks in movies can be 25 to 30db, so you do not have to be at reference level, before distortion occurs if using a speaker that is 90db or less sensitivity. In a big room with a longer listening distance can make it even more of a problem.
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post #38 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by saeyedoc View Post

I'll get out my meter this weekend, I doubt I'm hitting any where near reference level.
I have my system calibrated with ARC, will typically be at -15 or so watching blu-rays, may get to -10 listening to music, unless the source is particularly low (like AI on my cable box).
I'm old and my ears can't take it too loud (not that old at 51).
I'm not looking for reference level ear-splitting sound.
I like it more like Mrs. Nuance, nice and smooth in the upper registers.
Looking for a more refined sound as opposed to a movie theater room shaking experience.
From the description of the speakers at your WI GTC, I'd most likely prefer the Soundscape 8, but that's a little out of my current budget range.
My curiosity is whether it would be better to get something like the Phil 2 or 3, Salk STSC, etc. or go with a stand-mounted monitor with better drivers, along the lines of the Soundscape M7, Vapor Cirrus, Selah Tempestra.
I'm hearing concerns in some other forums that they may not have big enough drivers to deal with my space.
May have to ease my wife into the idea of 3 Phil 3s with nice veneers, sounds like it may be the best bang for the buck.

That is the whole point. If it is reference level and ear splitting, then it is not clean. Clean reference levels peaks are not something that chases you out of the room. I wish more people got the opportunity to hear a good system that is capable of clean reference level sound. It is a real eye opener.

The sensitivity on your speakers is not very high. So I would expect the peaks to be soft clipping if turned up loud. This means the lower levels are increasing, but the peaks are not able to increase as you turn up the volume. When that happens, you just get more and more distortion and it just sounds loud.
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post #39 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by AV Science Sales 5 View Post


Dynamic peaks in movies can be 25 to 30db, so you do not have to be at reference level, before distortion occurs if using a speaker that is 90db or less sensitivity. In a big room with a longer listening distance can make it even more of a problem.

25 to 30dB? What movies and music has peaks that large? I am just curious.
post #40 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by Khaos View Post

It should be obvious I was talking under situations where both speakers would have an adequate amount of power. Obviously if the amp isn't pumping out enough juice, then the comparison would be invalid. My argument was that "sound quality" is not affected by sensitivity. If you want to say that not having enough power = worse sound quality, then we are now blaming the amplifier, not the speaker. This also agrees with my point that high-sensitivity works in coherence with high spl. A Hi-Fidelity speaker with low sensitivity will most probably have no issue's with music at regular-higher listening volumes provided the amp provides enough clean wattage because most "peaks" where high-sensitivity shines are involved in an HT application.



I was proving that high-sensitivity != better sound quality, given the proper pre-requisites. This quote is in direct agreement with my claim. As long as the amplifier has the power, this should apply all the way up to until you breach the threshold of pain, at which point it will no longer matter how much louder the "other" speaker can get without distorting.

We are in a thread where the OP is looking for speakers in the 3k-5k range. If the OP does not have a good amplifier, he should not be investing in speakers at this price point.

I will say, you are in fact right. If the amp cannot supply the power to the less efficient, then the more efficient will sound better. Nevertheless, this is no longer a fair comparison.

OP's Amp Ratings:
220 watts RMS x 5, 20 Hz - 20 kHz,
8 Ω, all channels driven;
300 watts RMS x 5, 20 Hz - 20 kHz,
4 Ω, all channels driven

His subwoofer is handling the lower frequencies (where the excess power actually comes into play). With this in mind, it's safe to say he has more than enough power.


My argument is valid.

- Kh[a]os

Distance has to be factored in. OPer has a large room. What happens when that sound has to travel around 18'? Your 220 watts just shrank to nothing and we are not talking about peaks anywhere near reference at the listening position if the sensitivity is 86db.
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post #41 of 104
http://myhometheater.homestead.com/splcalculator.html

The T900's I suggested with a 88db, 4ohm sensitivity, at a listening distance of about 12ft will be able to peak at 104.5db's. For HT, if the speakers are dialog matched at 85db's, that leaves 20db's for peaks.

The Triple 12HT will have 32db for peaks.

So it simply comes down to this, if you want HT, go high-sensitivity like the JTR. If you want it geared towards music, then either will work (as music does not have 20db peaks).

I am a bit naive when it comes to using that calculator, so I if I am interpreting it wrong please point that out. Otherwise I'll never know xD.

- Kh[a]os
post #42 of 104
Reference level is defined as listening at sustained 85dB's with peaks up to 105dB at the speakers, 115 to the subwoofers or 118 to the subs if you use a crossover (most people do). So, I ask again, where do these 25-30dB swings come in? Which movies and music CD's have that large a change in dynamic range?

Not everyone listens at reference levels by the way. If you consistently do...well, better get your hearing checked.
post #43 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nuance View Post

Reference level is defined as listening at sustained 85dB's with peaks up to 105dB at the speakers, 115 to the subwoofers or 118 to the subs if you use a crossover (most people do). So, I ask again, where do these 25-30dB swings come in? Which movies and music CD's have that large a change in dynamic range?

Not everyone listens at reference levels by the way. If you consistently do...well, better get your hearing checked.

I should have said movies on some systems can have have 25 to 30 db peaks. The spec is 20db peaks, but from what I have read over the years short peaks of 3db to 5db over the limit are often times allowed. I do not know the peaks for movies, but having read that 3db to 5db over the limit has been allowed would get us to 25db peaks. Combine that with people running their subs 3db to 6db hot and you are there. I run my subs 3db hot in my system. Music, I would not know. Not a music guy, but I have always read that you find a lot more dynamics in HT recordings compared to most music recordings. Though I know that there are huge dynamics in some orchestral pieces.
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post #44 of 104
Thread Starter 
Had my wife look at pictures of some of the contenders last night. She hated the look of the Phils . I think it will have to be a black finish, she wants something that will blend in. I think a stand mounted monitor like the Tempestra or Cirrus in black may cause the least grief. No way she would go for large HT type speakers like the Catalysts.
post #45 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by Khaos View Post

http://myhometheater.homestead.com/splcalculator.html

The T900's I suggested with a 88db, 4ohm sensitivity, at a listening distance of about 12ft will be able to peak at 104.5db's. For HT, if the speakers are dialog matched at 85db's, that leaves 20db's for peaks.

The Triple 12HT will have 32db for peaks.

So it simply comes down to this, if you want HT, go high-sensitivity like the JTR. If you want it geared towards music, then either will work (as music does not have 20db peaks).

I am a bit naive when it comes to using that calculator, so I if I am interpreting it wrong please point that out. Otherwise I'll never know xD.

- Kh[a]os

Note that it took 1,500 watts for the 84db sensitivity speaker to get to 104.5db at 12' listening distance. Also note that the calculator does not take power compression into account. Power compression starts at around 1/8 to 1/10 the wattage rating of the speaker and can rob 3db to 9db from a speaker, maybe more. Even if we are only talking 3db for power compression, that takes the 1,500 watts to 3,000 watts for the 84db speaker to hit reference. HT dynamics are very demanding.
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post #46 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by AV Science Sales 5 View Post

I should have said movies on some systems can have have 25 to 30 db peaks. The spec is 20db peaks, but from what I have read over the years short peaks of 3db to 5db over the limit are often times allowed. I do not know the peaks for movies, but having read that 3db to 5db over the limit has been allowed would get us to 25db peaks. Combine that with people running their subs 3db to 6db hot and you are there. I run my subs 3db hot in my system. Music, I would not know. Not a music guy, but I have always read that you find a lot more dynamics in HT recordings compared to most music recordings. Though I know that there are huge dynamics in some orchestral pieces.

Running subwoofers hot doesn't change how dynamic the peaks are. They'll either range from 1-20 (or 25, as you claim), or they won't; AVR levels won't change that. I've never seen any musical piece have 30dB peaks, as you claim, nor movies.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AV Science Sales 5 View Post

Note that it took 1,500 watts for the 84db sensitivity speaker to get to 104.5db at 12' listening distance. Also note that the calculator does not take power compression into account. Power compression starts at around 1/8 to 1/10 the wattage rating of the speaker and can rob 3db to 9db from a speaker, maybe more. Even if we are only talking 3db for power compression, that takes the 1,500 watts to 3,000 watts for the 84db speaker to hit reference. HT dynamics are very demanding.

Does the calculator take into account room gain? How about impedance? Edit: nevermind, I found the link above. See my post below.
post #47 of 104
I'm old like you, 52. We have similar tastes in music. There are a lot of good suggestions here, looks like mostly internet direct companies. I recently picked up some dynaudio contour 1.8's (used) and think they are fantastic. Golden ear triton 2's are at the low end of your price range, I'd give them a listen as well.
post #48 of 104
I used the calculator at the link provided above, AV Science, and my numbers don't jive with yours. To reach 105dB with 84dB sensitive speaker at a listening distance of 12 feet it took 264 watts, which is a LOT different than your claimed 1500. I used the option "near a wall (within 2-4 feet) because most people will have their speakers near a wall. If I change it to "away from walls" it takes 526 watts to each 105dB from 12 feet; again, much different than your numbers. We listen to speakers in pairs, so are you doing it with one speaker or two?
post #49 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by Khaos View Post

The T900's I suggested with an 88db, 4ohm sensitivity

I used his amplifier's claim of 300w at 4ohms. Not quite sure where you saw 1500w and for that matter where you got an 84db sensitivity from.

I used away from walls when I posted those numbers. For near a wall, peaks reached 107.5db.

EDIT: As Nuance pointed out, if you use 1 speaker, then your numbers add up. Innocent mistake xP.

- Kh[a]os


Quote:
Originally Posted by AV Science Sales 5 View Post

Note that it took 1,500 watts for the 84db sensitivity speaker to get to 104.5db at 12' listening distance. Also note that the calculator does not take power compression into account. Power compression starts at around 1/8 to 1/10 the wattage rating of the speaker and can rob 3db to 9db from a speaker, maybe more. Even if we are only talking 3db for power compression, that takes the 1,500 watts to 3,000 watts for the 84db speaker to hit reference. HT dynamics are very demanding.
post #50 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by Khaos View Post

I used his amplifier's claim of 300w at 4ohms. Not quite sure where you saw 1500w and for that matter where you got an 84db sensitivity from.

I used away from walls when I posted those numbers. For near a wall, peaks reached 107.5db.

EDIT: As Nuance pointed out, if you use 1 speaker, then your numbers add up. Innocent mistake xP.

- Kh[a]os



Edit: nevermind...the calculator clearly states an "8 ohm speaker," so this is based on 8 ohms. Now we know.
post #51 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nuance View Post

The calculator doesn't specify ohms, though, does it? Or maybe it doesn't matter. I assumed 8 ohms, but perhaps not. If it is 4 ohms then a less powerful amp than we've stated is needed, as amplifiers make less power into 8 ohms. 300 watts into 4 ohms would be something like 150-200 into 8. My post's #'s above was assuming 8 ohm impedance/power ratings. So an amp with 332 watts (I assume into 8 ohms) will hit 105dB with an 88dB sensitive pair of speakers at 12 feet away with no room playing a role in the factor. If you count room gain (2-4 feet from the speaker), it'll only take 167 watts (8 ohms??) to hit 105dB.

EDIT: Just saw your edit, the information below is probably rendered invalid then, although, doesn't ohms just affect the amount of wattage? Wouldn't this calculator still work as long as you provide the 4ohm wattage as opposed to the 8ohm wattage?

To fix my numbers:

The T900, with an 88db, 4ohm sensitivity, powered by 300 watts, can reach a peak of 104.5db away from a wall, and 107.5 near a wall. Assuming you are near a wall, this leaves 22.5db for peaks.

The JTR Triple 12HT at 101db, 4ohm sensitivity, powered by 300 watts, can reach a peak of 117.5db away from a wall, and 120.5 near a wall. Assuming you are near a wall, this leaves 35.5db for peaks.

The JTR Triple 8HT will be -3db.

If 12HT had a sensitivity of 8ohms, the peaks at 220w would be 119.2, just about -1db.

- Kh[a]os
post #52 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nuance View Post

I used the calculator at the link provided above, AV Science, and my numbers don't jive with yours. To reach 105dB with 84dB sensitive speaker at a listening distance of 12 feet it took 264 watts, which is a LOT different than your claimed 1500. I used the option "near a wall (within 2-4 feet) because most people will have their speakers near a wall. If I change it to "away from walls" it takes 526 watts to each 105dB from 12 feet; again, much different than your numbers. We listen to speakers in pairs, so are you doing it with one speaker or two?

Since we are talking about doing reference levels (105db) that is based on a single speaker. I used away from walls. That gives you 1,500 watts. As I said it is not easy to do reference levels, especially if trying to do them cleanly, allowing for compression and headroom. I thought all the 2-channel guys that use their systems for 2-channel and HT spaced their speakers out from the walls?

Added
My mistake. I don't know where I got 84. I guess I saw the 4 ohm after words and that stuck in my mind. For an 88db speaker for reference levels, away from walls the wattage comes to a little over 600. Not acounting for power compression or headroom.
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post #53 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by AV Science Sales 5 View Post

Since we are talking about doing reference levels (105db) that is based on a single speaker. I used away from walls. That gives you 1,500 watts. As I said it is not easy to do reference levels, especially if trying to do them cleanly, allowing for compression and headroom. I thought all the 2-channel guys that use their systems for 2-channel and HT spaced their speakers out from the walls?

Added
My mistake. I don't know where I got 84. I guess I saw the 4 ohm after words and that stuck in my mind. For an 88db speaker for reference levels, away from walls the wattage comes to a little over 600. Not acounting for power compression or headroom.

We listen in stereo, so you need to do it with 2 speakers in the calculator. That comes out to 332 watts.

Not everyone can move their speakers away from the walls more than 4 feet; these are mostly livings rooms, after all. Not everyone has the luxury of a dedicated HT in their house, either. For those folks it only take 167 watts to reach 105dB at 12 feet away with 88dB sensitive speakers.
post #54 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nuance View Post

Nope - we listen in stereo, so you need to do it with 2 speakers in the calculator.

Not if talking reference as I was. Also the speaker is a 4 ohm speaker. The specs do not list the way that the sensitivity was measured. It could be:

88db 1 watt/1 meter in a chamber
88 db 1 watt/1 meter in room (aprox. = to 85db 1 watt/ 1 meter in chamber)
88db 2.83 volts/ 1 meter in room (aprox = to 82db 1 watt 1 meter in chamber)

There are even more games that are played when listening sensitivity. Often times when nothing is specified, I find that the measurement for speakers that are not 8 ohm will use 2.83 volts and possibly be taken in room. An 88db 1 watt/ 1 meter (4 ohm) measured in a chamber is equal to 80db to 82db speaker measured in room using 2.83 volts rather than 1watt. Just not enough info to know.

Looking at that calculator, it appears that in room sensitivity is used.
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post #55 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by AV Science Sales 5 View Post

Not if talking reference as I was.

How do you figure? Do you mean there is a difference between music and movies, as in, the channels are independent when watching movies? I guess that begs the question: are movies mixed to hit 105dB per channel, or combined? I would guess the latter. Even so, no on listens to music in mono, so it would only apply for movies, and only if watched at reference level. The calculator also may not take into account whether the speakers are being run full range or crossed over. Also, most speakers in dedicated theaters are within 4 feet of a boundary, so the needed wattage would be 333 watts for each individual speaker. If you sum the fronts (which movies may or may not do - I don't know), then it's 167 watts.

I think we can agree there are other factors involved that may be being overlooked, but in the end it depends on the intended use. I never have, nor will I ever watch movies at reference levels. I value my hearing.
post #56 of 104
I just noticed this on the SPL calculator website:

4. The number of speakers in the system. For stereo, use 2. For multichannel systems, try using 3 (for left, center, and right). This calculation assumes that the speakers are each driven by the same power, have similar efficencies, and are equidistant from the listening position.

So does "multichannel" systems include Home Theater? I think it does, but I could be incorrect.

I also noticed this on the website as well:

If you do not have a subwoofer, or full range speakers with good bass extension close to the walls or corners; you will get a more accurate number by leaving the default.

Based on the way that is phrased, one should select the option that assumes the speakers (or subwoofer) are within 4 feet of a boundary (which is likely anyway in a theater system found in someone's home; it doesn't apply to everyone, though, of course). Subs are almost always placed near a boundary.
post #57 of 104
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nuance View Post

I think we can agree there are other factors involved that may be being overlooked, but in the end it depends on the intended use. I never have, nor will I ever watch movies at reference levels. I value my hearing.

Yeah neither do I. I guess I shouldn't have typed "I like to crank it" in my OP.
Let's try to get the discussion back to high-resolution, low-distortion speakers that will sound good at low to moderate volumes and have some degree of WAF in this non-dedicated, general family room.
post #58 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by saeyedoc View Post

Yeah neither do I. I guess I shouldn't have typed "I like to crank it" in my OP.
Let's try to get the discussion back to high-resolution, low-distortion speakers that will sound good at low to moderate volumes and have some degree of WAF in this non-dedicated, general family room.

If I was you I'd go Salk HT2-TL's and call it a day. Those speakers really sing, and everyone loved them at our SE Wisconsin GTG this past weekend. I've not heard a better speaker under $8,000, but YMMV.
post #59 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nuance View Post

If I was you I'd go Salk HT2-TL's and call it a day. Those speakers really sing, and everyone loved them at our SE Wisconsin GTG this past weekend. I've not heard a better speaker under $8,000, but YMMV.

I'm going to have to second Nuance's suggestion.

If you wanted to go for something cheaper though(I never heard the HT2's so I can't compare sound quality), I'd still recommend the T900F's.

- Kh[a]os.
post #60 of 104
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nuance View Post

If I was you I'd go Salk HT2-TL's and call it a day. Those speakers really sing, and everyone loved them at our SE Wisconsin GTG this past weekend. I've not heard a better speaker under $8,000, but YMMV.

I'll have to work on her to get her to like the shape and look of them.
I think I'll have an easier time with some black, stand-mounted monitors that are less imposing than the HT2s or my Vandys.
She's been a trooper putting up with the Vandys for 25 years now, I guess I'll cut her some slack, as long as they sound good.
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