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Advice for Long Term Plan

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
I've been using my pieced together Home Theater setup for quite a while now. I started building it 11 years ago with the purchase of a pair of Rocket RS750s which have served me very well over the years. This week I upgraded my Denon AVR-887 to a Denon AVR-1913. Running the Audyssey setup was a 'Wow!' experience but highlighted my Center Channel as a weak spot. This started the Techno-Lust induced thought process that maybe it was time to slowly upgrade my Speakers, this time with a plan rather than just purchasing random pieces as I went.

I auditioned some Center Channels yesterday and came home with a B&W HTM62. My local store allows me 30 days to try a product and return for exchange or full refund if I'm not happy. The home audition option is very nice. At this point I'm leaning towards returning the HTM62 for the HTM61 and then going with the rest of the B&W 600 high end series. (683s and 685s). Unless of course I'm steered in a different direction by comments here. I don't have a specific budget but the B&W 600 is in line with what I'm probably looking at - $2-3,000 for Fronts/Surround/Sub

For the Sub, I'm looking at the GoldenEar Forcefield 3 or 4, though my sales rep there had another Sub Line he wanted me to look at.

I posted a B&W specific thread in the B&W forum regarding building a complete speaker system with B&W speakers but thought I would come here for more general recommendations. With the ability to audition in the store and then the 30 day home trial, I'd like to stick with my local store, Listen Up.

I'm wanting to upgrade my Speaker set around the 1913 over the next 1 or 2 years to come up with a Speaker System that works well together. With my current room setup, I only run 5.1. I'd love some ideas/recommendations based on what Listen Up has to offer. Thank you in advance.

Current Setup:
Receiver: Denon AVR-1913
Fronts: Rocket RS:750

Center: B&W HTM62 (most likely getting replaced by the HTM61)
Surrounds: Infinite Beta 20
Sub: Sony SA-WM500
post #2 of 22
Your center channel and front left/right should timbre match in order to have the optimal front sound stage. Since you have bought the HTM62, that means running B&W speakers for your left and right.
post #3 of 22
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the reply cel. Matching speakers is definitely the way I want to go. Did you get a chance to browse the speaker options at [URL=http://Http://http://www.listenup.com]ListenUp[/URL]? I'm not married to B&W just yet, tho I did really enjoy the Center Channel offerings. Also, what order would you recommend replacing current components? I feel my Rockets can hold up well but maybe not now that it is 11 years later?

Other Brands they offer: PSB, Definitve Technology, Focal Chorus, Sonus Faber, GoldenEar
post #4 of 22
You should ignore us and go listen. Your ears are the best judge smile.gif They definitely have many good brands, and your individual listening preferences are what's important.

I would advise researching and asking questions in the AVS subwoofer forum before replacing your sub. Internet direct brands HSU Research, SVS Sound, Rythmik, Outlaw Audio, and Power Sound Audio provide much better performance values than what you can typically get from regular speaker brand subwoofers. If you hear a sub you like at that store, usually you can get something much better for the same money.
post #5 of 22
Thread Starter 
Thanks again Cel. Solid advice. So it sounds like I should replace fronts, then surrounds to match timbre and deal with the sub later? Humorously, I don't think Audyssey is even using my sub.. It has the Crossovers set to Full Band for all speakers.
post #6 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by andremal View Post

I auditioned...Unless of course I'm steered in a different direction by comments here...
For the Sub, I'm looking at the GoldenEar...

Trust your ears. Audition the speakers in your home and base your decision on that, not on comments...unless you care what people think about your system. biggrin.gif

Do you care if a speaker measures "accurately" or just care about how they actually sound? biggrin.gif

For subs, I would look at Rythmik, HSU, Power Sound, SVS, etc.

CEA Standard 2 Meters SPL @ 32/40/50/63 Hz:

$1,200 B&W ASW-610XP: 96.1/101.5/105.9/108.9
$700 Emotiva X-Ref 12: 99.1/103.5/107.6/108.5
$1,600 Klipsch SW-311: 102.6/105.3/108.6/111.4
$769 SVS PB12-NSD: 105.9/106.5/107.3/108.0
$300 BIC PL-200:102.5/107.7/110.4/108.1(HSU STF-2 clone)
$4,000 Velodyne DD15+: 102.0/109.0/109.0/112.0
$900 Aperion Bravus II 12D: 105.3/109.8/112.6/112.2
$879 Velodyne EQ-MAX15: 104.2/110.0/114.2/114.8
$1,200 RBH SX-12: 108/111.1/113.7/112.7
$650 Outlaw LFM-1EX: 110.7/112.3/113.7/113.8
$800 Power Sound XV15: 109.6/113.7/116.6/114.7
$1,200 SVS PB12+: 111.5/114.3/115.3/115.3
$800 Epik Empire: 109.7/113.2/116.4/119.2
$1,700 Funk FW12X: 112.4/114.0/113.9/113.1
$9,000 Paradigm Sig Sub2: 109.9/113.2/116.9/120.2
$2,200 JL Audio F112: 112.4/116.2/113.3/117.6
$900 Hsu VTF-15H: 113.0/115.7/115.7/115.6
$5,000 Velodyne DD18+: 113.0/115.8/116.8/115.3
$2,000 SVS PB13 Ultra: 115.5/117.5/117.8/116.6
$1,100 Chase HT VS18.1: 116.0/118.1/117.8/117.2
$1,200 Rythmik FV15HP: 117.0/119.5/119.1/118.8
post #7 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by andremal View Post


Other Brands they offer: Focal Chorus...

Like the $800/pr (MSRP $1800) Focal 814v?

http://www.accessories4less.com/index.php?page=search&search_query=Focal&x=0&y=0

Audition them and see how you like them.
post #8 of 22
Thread Starter 
Hey AcuDef. I am purely interested in how they sound to my ears. I wouldn't begin to understand measurements. smile.gif For instance I see that is a list of subs but I have no clue what all of the numbers mean (except price).
post #9 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by andremal View Post

Hey AcuDef. I am purely interested in how they sound to my ears. I wouldn't begin to understand measurements. smile.gif For instance I see that is a list of subs but I have no clue what all of the numbers mean (except price).

If you purely care only in how they sound and not how well they measure, then trust no one but yourself. wink.gif

How the speakers sound in your own house is the most important.

For subs, those numbers are output levels (how loud they can play @ 2 meters away within distortion limits). The higher the numbers, the better. For example, the $1200 Rythmik is equivocally better than all those subwoofers. The $300 BIC PL-200 (actually $287 delivered) is equivocally better than the $1200 B&W, $700 Emotiva, $1600 Klipsch, $769 SVS, and almost as good as the $4000 Velodyne DD15+. The HSU VTF-15 is a great sub that is equivocally as good as the $9000 Paradigm Sub2.
Edited by AcuDefTechGuy - 4/6/13 at 10:13am
post #10 of 22
Thread Starter 
I just got back from 2 hours in the Audition Room at Listen Up. I took a stack of CDs varying from Santana Live to Trance and a few things in between. I spent most of my time switching back and forth between the B&W 683s and the PSB Image T6s. All I can say is wow, what a difference in sound. For a good amount of the music, the sound of the PSB won out, but on a few songs the B&W really shined. They did not have the matching Image B6 or C5 speakers for me to audition if I wanted to go with PSB. Also, the B&Ws were fresh out of the box and not broken in. So I ended up coming back home with my HTM62 for now. They are going to break in the 683s this week and get the B6 and C5 in. I'll go back later this week to hear everything. I also want to hear some Movies over them as well when I return.

In the end, I'm no closer to a final decision other than believing I am down to 2 final candidates.

One thing of note is the price difference between the two. The PSB Line is notably cheaper than the B&W.
post #11 of 22
Thread Starter 
2 hours later and the PSBs are on my mind. Based on the Floor Speaker Auditioning, I believe they are the front runners at this point and the cheaper price is very attractive. I did get to audition the B&W 685 Bookshelf speakers which were superb. I'm looking forward to being able to hear the rest of PSBs offerings in the Image class later this week.
post #12 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by AcuDefTechGuy View Post

For subs, those numbers are output levels (how loud they can play @ 2 meters away within distortion limits). The higher the numbers, the better. For example, the $1200 Rythmik is equivocally better than all those subwoofers. The $300 BIC PL-200 (actually $287 delivered) is equivocally better than the $1200 B&W, $700 Emotiva, $1600 Klipsch, $769 SVS, and almost as good as the $4000 Velodyne DD15+. The HSU VTF-15 is a great sub that is equivocally as good as the $9000 Paradigm Sub2.

Well, I think you meant to say "unequivocally" better, or did you? Your list is based on max SPL, and it does not provide information about SQ. For instance, just because a sub has more max SPL doesn't mean that it has better transient response. As long as it has enough max SPL for the room, I'd take the Rythmik F12 over the HSU VTF-15H, and the VTF-15H definitely has more max output.

And this is why Josh Ricci's measurements at data-base.com include more information than just CEA 2010 output.
post #13 of 22
Just found these measurements of the ForceField 3 subwoofer. While Golden Ears lists ' 18 Hz - 250 Hz" as the frequency response, the measured response -3db at 34hz. Unless you absolutely have to have such a small compact sub as one of the Golden Ears, you'll do better going with a 12" sub from one of the ID vendors previously listed. I'd recommend looking into the SVS PB12-NSD. Here's a review: http://www.audioholics.com/reviews/speakers/subwoofers/pb12-nsd
post #14 of 22
Thread Starter 
Thanks Cel. I'm thinking I might be able to convince the Wife to let me get the entire PSB set, Image T6, B6 and C5. The sub will have to wait for a few months. I will definitely look at that one.
post #15 of 22
Thread Starter 
That sub looks great!
post #16 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by andremal View Post

That sub looks great!

Definitely smile.gif

If you have questions about it, ask in the SVS owners thread in the subwoofer forum. They'll be very helpful, and sometimes SVS even joins in with answers.
post #17 of 22
Thread Starter 
I'm looking forward to addressing a new Sub in the (hopefully) not so distant future. My current sub is so weak Audyssey Setup put the crossover for all of my speakers on Full Range. The sub got benched!
post #18 of 22
Receivers typically do that anyway. Doesn't matter how good the sub is. Towers are almost always set to full and you have to override it. It's just the receiver saying it would be acceptable to run them without a sub. But it doesn't mean it wouldn't be better with.
post #19 of 22
Thread Starter 
Ah, thank you. I've had the 1913 less than a week and haven't gone completely through the manual yet. I was concerned with over-riding the Audyssey settings. I just changed the Bass setting from LFE to LFE+Main, which kicked the Sub in. I will have to continue to play around with it. I've got PSB on the brain..
post #20 of 22
post #21 of 22
Thread Starter 
Yes thank you. I have it bookmarked but like my 1913 pdf manual, have only skimmed it.
post #22 of 22
Thread Starter 
I just got off the phone with ListenUp. They would have to order the Image C5 and B6s for me to audition which they really don't want to do in case I don't go with PSB. He also pointed out that if I preferred one Floor Standing Speaker over the other then I would probably prefer the rest of the set over the other brand as they have the same timbre. I would agree with the statement. With that in mind, I have decided to go with the PSB Image series. I will be returning the B&W HTM62 for the Image C5 and then getting the Image T6s. I still have some work to do with my Wife to convince her to let me get the B6s now, as well as waiting for our Tax Returns to hit the bank. Good to have a decision made though.
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