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Axiom vs DefTech XTR-40 vs XTR-50 or XTR-60

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
I was originally going to try to go with in-wall speakers because I need a very minimal, unobtrusive, slim profile speaker for my front LCRs...

After more investigation, I have too many studs in this particular area of wall, leaving only about 4.5" between them.

This is enough room for Axiom in-wall/on-wall hybrids to fit into the spot, and stick out about 3.5", but they will also look very nice with their cherry finish in my room (we are trying to avoid the shiny high-tech, modern look like the DefTechs have)

However, I've heard some less-than-stellar reviews of the sound quality from the Axioms, so I'm also considering on-wall narrow profile Mythos XTR series.

Anybody have any opinions? And, if so, I have some more DT questions:

1) Is the poor low-end response (92 Hz on the XTR-50) anything to be concerned about? Yes, I will be using a decent subwoofer (leaning toward SVS or Hsu)

2) Does anybody have any comparison information between XTR 40, 50, and 60 models? Right now I can get the 40s for about $370 each, the 50s for about $510 each, and the 60s for $700 each. At those prices, I'm hesitant to go all the way up to the 60s, but also not sure if the 40s are going to be too low-end/

I mean, the bass response is certainly significantly different on the 60s from the 40s...

40 = 100 Hz
50 = 92 Hz
60 = 70 Hz


Are there other significant differences other than that? I was originally leaning toward the 50s, but now it's almost seeming like it would be better to save money and get the 40s, or go all out step on up to the 60s (after all, I saved $1500 by buying a PC instead of a Mac Pro, built to spec using the same components as the Mac... so I suppose that saved money could go into this if I really need it to)


PS. I have a Denon 1612 that I just purchased as receiver, not sure if that makes any difference
post #2 of 13
You could also do something like this that has more bass:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Definitive-Technology-Mythos-Nine-L-C-R-Speaker-BBVENB-/180772780409?pt=Speakers_Subwoofers&hash=item2a16e5b979
post #3 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:

Yeah, the problem is that I specifically need either in-wall or very slim profile due to my room setup -- it might seem strange, but one of the speakers will be mounted directly below a cushion bench which people can sit on, so I need it to not stick out too far and get in the way of their legs. Most on-walls (like this one) are over 4" deep. If I were going to go that route, there's a good chance I'd get the Emp Tek ones...

but I think I'm really going to have to go with the DefTech XTR series, I'm just wondering if it's worth ponying up twice as much money ($700 a pop) for the XTR-60s to get down to 70 Hz lower end. Still not good, but the alternative is I have to find a sub-woofer that can handle the higher lows well in the 100 Hz range. The Hsu STF/VTF ones I am looking at only have a crossover up to 90. The Outlaws and SVS have higher freq range for crossover, but I'm trying to find SPL and response curves to get more information...

I'm also concerned about that 100 Hz range sounding weird if it comes from a sub in the corner of the room rather than a more directional source (I know lower freqs won't matter, but in the 90 Hz range? I don't know)
post #4 of 13
Thread Starter 
but the bottom line is I can save $1000+ by getting the XTR-40s instead of XTR-60s, so I could get a much better subwoofer and still save money, or I could get a less dynamic sub and put the money into the LCRs...
post #5 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by guru20 View Post

Yeah, the problem is that I specifically need either in-wall or very slim profile due to my room setup -- it might seem strange, but one of the speakers will be mounted directly below a cushion bench which people can sit on, so I need it to not stick out too far and get in the way of their legs. Most on-walls (like this one) are over 4" deep. If I were going to go that route, there's a good chance I'd get the Emp Tek ones...
but I think I'm really going to have to go with the DefTech XTR series, I'm just wondering if it's worth ponying up twice as much money ($700 a pop) for the XTR-60s to get down to 70 Hz lower end. Still not good, but the alternative is I have to find a sub-woofer that can handle the higher lows well in the 100 Hz range. The Hsu STF/VTF ones I am looking at only have a crossover up to 90. The Outlaws and SVS have higher freq range for crossover, but I'm trying to find SPL and response curves to get more information...
I'm also concerned about that 100 Hz range sounding weird if it comes from a sub in the corner of the room rather than a more directional source (I know lower freqs won't matter, but in the 90 Hz range? I don't know)

80hz and below and it should be very hard to localize. 90hz? Probably hard to localize the sound, but it might bother some people. 100hz? Indeed, you may have localized sound.

As for crossover, you should be using the bassmanagment configuration in your receiver. You should have no problem sending 100hz to the HSU subs. You can always call them to confirm.

Tough call. If you buy the XTR 50's and split the difference, what will your budget be for a sub?

Another option? If you buy the XTR 40's and buy something like this that you can place closer to your seating position along with a larger dedicated sub:
http://www.hsuresearch.com/products/mbm-12mk2.html

This is a mid-bass module that, if placed closer to the seating position, might be just right for bass in the 50-100hz range.

Then you buy another sub that can dig deeper for the sub 50hz bass (does not have to be HSU, but I cannot recommend them enough).

Although something like this would be very tempting for the price:
http://www.powersoundaudio.com/products/xv15

This is a new company, but the founders came from SVS, and one of the them was one of the original founding members there. If you got the mid-bass module from HSU and one of these subs, you would be bass heaven for less than $1300.

To stay closer to $1000 you could get the mid bass module from HSU and an VTF-2 MK4.
post #6 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ack_bk View Post

80hz and below and it should be very hard to localize. 90hz? Probably hard to localize the sound, but it might bother some people. 100hz? Indeed, you may have localized sound.
As for crossover, you should be using the bassmanagment configuration in your receiver. You should have no problem sending 100hz to the HSU subs. You can always call them to confirm.
Tough call. If you buy the XTR 50's and split the difference, what will your budget be for a sub?
Another option? If you buy the XTR 40's and buy something like this that you can place closer to your seating position along with a larger dedicated sub:
http://www.hsuresearch.com/products/mbm-12mk2.html
This is a mid-bass module that, if placed closer to the seating position, might be just right for bass in the 50-100hz range.
Then you buy another sub that can dig deeper for the sub 50hz bass (does not have to be HSU, but I cannot recommend them enough).
Although something like this would be very tempting for the price:
http://www.powersoundaudio.com/products/xv15
This is a new company, but the founders came from SVS, and one of the them was one of the original founding members there. If you got the mid-bass module from HSU and one of these subs, you would be bass heaven for less than $1300.
To stay closer to $1000 you could get the mid bass module from HSU and an VTF-2 MK4.

Good point. I did briefly consider something like that 2-sub setup with one dedicated for mid-lows.

I mean, I'm actually leaning away from the XTR-50s because they just don't seem to offer much to justify a 40% higher pricetag. They are still only 2-ways, bass still only goes down to 92 Hz (only 8 Hz higher than the 40s); so at this point I am going to go big or go home. The big debate now comes in at: do I shell out the extra $1000 for the XTR-60s? Or do I take that money and invest it in better sub (or 2 subs instead of 1)?

Been wracking my brain trying to figure it out. If the XTR-60s were about $100 cheaper apiece, it would be a no-brainer.

Meanwhile, I also keep seeing recent posts referencing great sales and deals on all these subs, but apparently I have missed them all. The shipping costs from many of the internet-order sub makers really boosts the prices up.

If I go with XTR-60s, I will need to get a sub under $700 (preferably around $600-$650 inclusive of shipping is what I'm looking at). Also, debating between power vs. compact size. I was going to place the sub under an end-table, but if I get a bigger one (the only 12" one I can find that fits is SB12-NSD), then maybe I will just use the sub as the end table, or maybe right next to it...

Lots of decisions. Any thoughts about whether ported vs. sealed would be preferable for my scenario? Would sealed help with the higher frequencies, or does it matter?


It's looking more and more like I might shell out the extra $$ for the XTR-60s, and skimp on the sub instead (by skimp, I don't mean go cheap, but I'm talking series like PB12, SB12, LFM-1, or maybe VTF-2.) I did just check out the Power Sound Audio line, particularly this xv15 one...
Edited by guru20 - 7/18/12 at 7:56pm
post #7 of 13
Thread Starter 
I do wonder one thing... how does it work to set up a mid- and sub dual woofer system? I only have one sub out from receiver... would it go into one sub which would filter out some frequencies before being daisy-chained to the other? I'm confused by how that would work...
post #8 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by guru20 View Post

Good point. I did briefly consider something like that 2-sub setup with one dedicated for mid-lows.
I mean, I'm actually leaning away from the XTR-50s because they just don't seem to offer much to justify a 40% higher pricetag. They are still only 2-ways, bass still only goes down to 92 Hz (only 8 Hz higher than the 40s); so at this point I am going to go big or go home. The big debate now comes in at: do I shell out the extra $1000 for the XTR-60s? Or do I take that money and invest it in better sub (or 2 subs instead of 1)?
Been wracking my brain trying to figure it out. If the XTR-60s were about $100 cheaper apiece, it would be a no-brainer.
Meanwhile, I also keep seeing recent posts referencing great sales and deals on all these subs, but apparently I have missed them all. The shipping costs from many of the internet-order sub makers really boosts the prices up.
If I go with XTR-60s, I will need to get a sub under $700 (preferably around $600-$650 inclusive of shipping is what I'm looking at). Also, debating between power vs. compact size. I was going to place the sub under an end-table, but if I get a bigger one (the only 12" one I can find that fits is SB12-NSD), then maybe I will just use the sub as the end table, or maybe right next to it...
Lots of decisions. Any thoughts about whether ported vs. sealed would be preferable for my scenario? Would sealed help with the higher frequencies, or does it matter?
It's looking more and more like I might shell out the extra $$ for the XTR-60s, and skimp on the sub instead (by skimp, I don't mean go cheap, but I'm talking series like PB12, SB12, LFM-1, or maybe VTF-2.) I did just check out the Power Sound Audio line, particularly this xv15 one...

I would be leaning towards the XTR60's myself. I realize they cost more, but they should be better for your space and will be better long-term. You can always add a second subwoofer down the road, changing out your speakers will be much more difficult.

Sealed vs ported? I found this link to be very helpful:
http://forum.blu-ray.com/showthread.php?t=43669


It is timeless debate. Truth is, there are positives and negatives with both ported and sealed. I am a fan of the Hsu subs as they give you the option to go ported or sealed and lots of tuning options in between. Best of both worlds. Personally, I prefer a ported sub, but that is just preference.

However, using a porrted subwoofer as an end table is not a bad idea. Usually closer placement gives you excellent bass response. Especially mid bass where you really feel it.

SVS is an excellent company and the SB12 is a fine subwoofer. Really cannnot go wrong with Hsu, or SVS. That said, would you have the option of adding a second SB12 down the road? If not, if you get one shot with a subwoofer, I am inclined to say go with a larger ported sub...

What is your room size again? Is it open to other rooms, or sealed?
post #9 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by guru20 View Post

I do wonder one thing... how does it work to set up a mid- and sub dual woofer system? I only have one sub out from receiver... would it go into one sub which would filter out some frequencies before being daisy-chained to the other? I'm confused by how that would work...

There are several methods, but the easiest would be to use a Y splitter off your receiver. One output on the receiver, and the Y splitter allows you to have two cables going out to the mid-bass and main subs. You configure the mid bass module to handle bass in the 50+ hz range and then it passes the bass below 50hz to your other sub. HSU would easily walk you through setup and configuration on the phone or via the forum here or at Hsu.
post #10 of 13
Thread Starter 
Okay, thanks for all the tips and ideas.

I actually just pulled a trigger on a purchase... and it wasn't the DefTechs after all. I decided to go with KEF's t-series (t301 LCR), similar to the XTRs but seem to be a better bang for the buck (getting them for about $350 each, including shipping) and they got a better review at TechRadar, especially regarding their mids and highs (rated down to 80 Hz in the freq response, for what it's worth. I know that doesn't say a whole lot, but I also know DefTech tend to really stretch the limits when reporting responses, so if I can get this rated at 80-30k Hz at half the price of the DTs rated 70-30k, sounds good to me... )

So I saved $1000 there, going to think about subs now. I'm probably going to go with a single subwoofer, the Hsu VTF-3 Mk4 is looking/sounding good to me at the moment, just mostly based around my budget and room layout (size of room, btw, is 22 x 13, home theater takes up one half of it, and it also has openings to a hallway and kitchen, but those are at the opposite corner of the room. This is not an ideal HT room here...), and the configuration of the ports and side-firing on that model
post #11 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by guru20 View Post

Okay, thanks for all the tips and ideas.
I actually just pulled a trigger on a purchase... and it wasn't the DefTechs after all. I decided to go with KEF's t-series (t301 LCR), similar to the XTRs but seem to be a better bang for the buck (getting them for about $350 each, including shipping) and they got a better review at TechRadar, especially regarding their mids and highs (rated down to 80 Hz in the freq response, for what it's worth. I know that doesn't say a whole lot, but I also know DefTech tend to really stretch the limits when reporting responses, so if I can get this rated at 80-30k Hz at half the price of the DTs rated 70-30k, sounds good to me... )
So I saved $1000 there, going to think about subs now. I'm probably going to go with a single subwoofer, the Hsu VTF-3 Mk4 is looking/sounding good to me at the moment, just mostly based around my budget and room layout (size of room, btw, is 22 x 13, home theater takes up one half of it, and it also has openings to a hallway and kitchen, but those are at the opposite corner of the room. This is not an ideal HT room here...), and the configuration of the ports and side-firing on that model

Deftech does tend to exaggerate useable extension in their specs for their speakers and subs, but they are hadly the only ones smile.gif

At the end of the day, you were going to have tradeoffs, and I really like Kef products. I have not heard the speakers you purchased but reviews tend to be favorable. That said, I don't think you should expect useable extension below 120-130hz:
http://www.hometheater.com/content/kef-t305-speaker-system-ht-labs-measures

So get a good subwoofer and plan on crossing over over 100hz and look into placing close to the speakers for localization issues, or perhaps looking into a midbass module.

For the money, it seems you got a good speaker and try not to focus too much on specs until you get it hooked up and listen to it.
post #12 of 13
Thread Starter 
Great resource, thanks. I keep looking for these response curves and can never find them when I do searches, why is it so hard to find actual useful metrics like this??

Looks like it may be usable down to 100, but I will try to set the crossover at 120 and see if that works well. Looks like these are not too bad (considering the size and price and all things considered) from about 150-15k (which is still way higher than I'd like, but my house leaves me no choice)

Looks like they do have a little better low-end extension than the XTR-50, anyway (and at a much lower price point), although that dip at 2k is strange.
Edited by guru20 - 7/19/12 at 9:21am
post #13 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by guru20 View Post

Okay, thanks for all the tips and ideas.
I actually just pulled a trigger on a purchase... and it wasn't the DefTechs after all. I decided to go with KEF's t-series (t301 LCR), similar to the XTRs but seem to be a better bang for the buck (getting them for about $350 each, including shipping) and they got a better review at TechRadar, especially regarding their mids and highs (rated down to 80 Hz in the freq response, for what it's worth. I know that doesn't say a whole lot, but I also know DefTech tend to really stretch the limits when reporting responses, so if I can get this rated at 80-30k Hz at half the price of the DTs rated 70-30k, sounds good to me... )
So I saved $1000 there, going to think about subs now. I'm probably going to go with a single subwoofer, the Hsu VTF-3 Mk4 is looking/sounding good to me at the moment, just mostly based around my budget and room layout (size of room, btw, is 22 x 13, home theater takes up one half of it, and it also has openings to a hallway and kitchen, but those are at the opposite corner of the room. This is not an ideal HT room here...), and the configuration of the ports and side-firing on that model

Hi, I am also debating between the XTR series and Kef T series. I haven't had a chance to listen to them yet, how do you like yours? Also, where did you find them for $350 a piece? Thanks!
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