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B&W Owner's Thread - Page 50

post #1471 of 17786
Quote:
Originally Posted by Reid_T View Post

If he also told you that you need $1000 (or more) in speaker cables, run away...

Rotel is very good stuff. But keep in mind that Rotel and B&W are the same company - part of "B&W group", along with Classe. So its no wonder all the B&W dealers always carry both. If you suspect that you're being oversold, that feeling is probably not without some merit.

FYI, I have 703's and the Denon 4806 avr. (And cheap speaker cable). The combination sounds amazing. My dealer was willing to demo the combination at the store - if I were you, I'd get him to demonstrate the "lack of quality" he's describing. Don't be shy about getting him to do a little work (like, carry an avr across the store). Of course they often prefer not to, but if you're serious about spending serious money with them, they should be willing to earn it.

I liked the Rotel, but the Denon sounded identical to me, and had a lot more capabililties that I wanted.

Bottom line: if you can't tell a difference, there isn't one. At least for you. If that means you can buy cheaper equiptment, you win!

-Reid


i agree. it seems like you are being oversold here.

if there is no difference to you then just go cheaper until you hear a difference. the cheaper you can go the better for you.
post #1472 of 17786
B&W Group owns Bowers & Wilkins Loudspeakers, Classe Audio, i-command, and Rotel Electronics. They all merged together so that they could focus on what they do best (and only that) in an effort to ensure financial success. In North America, Equity International is their subsidary who distributes all of these brands and takes care of all things related to such distribution.

So, while they are part of the same "group" they are given independence to ensure their own "quality" while developing a nice synergy between the groups. (They aren't the same company, but they are part of the one company).

This business model is similar to that of Duracell,Braun,Oral-b,Gillette all under Proctor and Gamble, but they each do their own work as if they were separate companies, but their products are always sold together.

Just figured I'd nit-pick a little bit on technicalities :P

Cheers!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Reid_T View Post


Rotel is very good stuff. But keep in mind that Rotel and B&W are the same company - part of "B&W group", along with Classe. So its no wonder all the B&W dealers always carry both. If you suspect that you're being oversold, that feeling is probably not without some merit.

-Reid
post #1473 of 17786
Thread Starter 
Rotel is privately and distictly owned, but the B&W group, of which they are a part, is a a developed business relationship ith shared interests and some shared resources and personell.
post #1474 of 17786
Quote:
Originally Posted by LTCJack View Post

This is comforting. I was told by a B&W dealer this weekend that none of the midrange avr's (denon, onkyo, yamaha) will drive the CM1's. I was actually going back and forth between Denon 3808ci and Onkyo tx-sr705. I was told that I will get only sound, but not quality, with these receivers. I was told I needed to get the Rotel 1065/1075 pre/pro.

This stuff is getting very confusing. Am I being oversold. I care just as much about video as I do audio, and the Denon/Onkyo AVR's seem to have better video capabilities. The B&W dealer says it is all marketing hogwash, and none of the features are valuable. He said HDMI 1:3 is worthless.

Hi LTC:

I went thru the same hand wringing about powering B&W speakers (mine are 703s) with a decent AVR. I bought the Onkyo 804 and it sounded great. But I kept reading and wringing my hands about not getting the most out of the speakers so I ALSO bought the 5x200w Rotel amp - - and the sound is really no better (to my ears). The heft and size of the amp is impressive looking sitting in the rack, but the sound is unchanged (which is still great sound). I don't have it turned up to reference level - - maybe that's where I might get some benefit from the Rotel.

I am using cheap Monster Cable (20 years old from my college setup). I do have a higher end sub (a Velodyne) that really fills in the sound.

Good luck.
post #1475 of 17786
I currently have a 2.0 setup with an HK AVR 235 and B&W 602S3 speakers. I want to add a center channel but the LCR600 is discontinued. Should I look to purchase a used one on Audiogon (I don't like buying used equipment) or is there a center channel speaker currently offered by B&W that will match my 602S3 fronts?

Also I am thinking of adding an amp to my reciever at the same time. Would I see any real bennifits from a Rotel RMB-1075 (120watts/channel X5) versus my reciever (50W/channel X 5 and 65W/channel in stereo)? I feel like my reciever is having difficulty running the speakers at the volume levels that I like, and adding an additional speaker would really strain the system.

If the RMB-1075 isn't enough I can hold out longer for an RMB-1090. Are there any other brands that offer similar performance in the price range of $800 to $1300 that I should consider?

Currently I listen to 60% Movies and 40% 2-channel Music.

Thanks.
post #1476 of 17786
Quote:
Originally Posted by Reid_T View Post

If he also told you that you need $1000 (or more) in speaker cables, run away...

Rotel is very good stuff. But keep in mind that Rotel and B&W are the same company - part of "B&W group", along with Classe. So its no wonder all the B&W dealers always carry both. If you suspect that you're being oversold, that feeling is probably not without some merit.

-Reid

My B&W dealer actually doesnt carry Rotel, they can take them in on custom order if you want, but they dont have it as a normal brand. That said, i got a Rotel RB-1080 to drive my 703s on top of my Yamaha RX-V2600. What is good with getting a good amp for the fronts is not only to ensure they have enough power, but leaving more power for the rest of the speakers too. Center, Surrounds, Back Surrounds. And the higher the series, the larger and more alike a normal front speaker the center will probably be.
post #1477 of 17786
Quote:
Originally Posted by LTCJack View Post

This is comforting. I was told by a B&W dealer this weekend that none of the midrange avr's (denon, onkyo, yamaha) will drive the CM1's. I was actually going back and forth between Denon 3808ci and Onkyo tx-sr705. I was told that I will get only sound, but not quality, with these receivers. I was told I needed to get the Rotel 1065/1075 pre/pro.

This stuff is getting very confusing. Am I being oversold. I care just as much about video as I do audio, and the Denon/Onkyo AVR's seem to have better video capabilities. The B&W dealer says it is all marketing hogwash, and none of the features are valuable. He said HDMI 1:3 is worthless.

Both B&W dealers I spoke to about the CM1s were concerned about using a "low-end" receiver which in the end sounded like anything you might find at a typical big box store.

After playing around with things in their demo room and trying out different equipment I'd say they're right, but it was barely noticeable to my ear. Now I was upgrading my receiver anyway so I just spent a few dollars more and got a Yamaha 1700 (which they both thought would do fine, even though one of them didn't sell the unit).
post #1478 of 17786
I have a B&W driver question for the experts. I apologize in advance since this has probably been covered over and over again, but with 50 pages of B&W discussion it's hard to find :-)

I have an older set of N803's that I got new about 3 years ago, before the model line split into "S" and "D" models.

I was smart enough to buy the matching center right away (got the HTM1), but I waited on the rears, and now I'm confused as to what my best option is for 4 rears (7.1 channels).

I suppose my ideal option would be to buy used and try to find 4 SCM-1's in the right color, but that seems difficult (none on ebay, craigslist, audiogon, etc.)

The next choice is to buy new. The SCMS with the non-diamond tweeter is probably fine, but expensive (and no dipole option...)

Here's the question: How do the drivers in the current DS7 (or even the DS3) compare to the drivers in my 3 year old N803's? Are the tweeters the same? What about the midranges? Are there some slightly older models of the 700 or 600 series that will match better (and hopefully be easier to find used)?

I will use mostly for home theater, with the occasional multi-channel audio recording.

I suppose a side question is whether current 7.1 AC-3 or DTS movie recordings work better with dipole or monopole rears. It's been a few years since I was in the market, and now that I'm building a dedicated theater I need to start asking these questions!

Thanks a lot for any advice,
--Carey
post #1479 of 17786
Quote:
Originally Posted by LTCJack View Post

This is comforting. I was told by a B&W dealer this weekend that none of the midrange avr's (denon, onkyo, yamaha) will drive the CM1's. I was actually going back and forth between Denon 3808ci and Onkyo tx-sr705. I was told that I will get only sound, but not quality, with these receivers. I was told I needed to get the Rotel 1065/1075 pre/pro.

This stuff is getting very confusing. Am I being oversold. I care just as much about video as I do audio, and the Denon/Onkyo AVR's seem to have better video capabilities. The B&W dealer says it is all marketing hogwash, and none of the features are valuable. He said HDMI 1:3 is worthless.

Take some grains of salt with that advice. It's completely ridiculous that video capabilies are marketing and you *need* to get Rotel to drive the CM1's. To me, video is VERY important.

I would say the CM1's are a power hungry speaker and that the better the receiver, the better the sound, but I don't agree that you need to get a high end receiver to get good sound. As long as the receiver is working well within its comfort zone, it should sound quite good. The question is whether the 705 is good enough for your situation. I'd say the 705 would work well in a medium sized room driving the CM1's. A medium sized room meaning less than 20x15. That's just an educated guess based my experience with receivers of this price category and power rating. I own a set of CM1s and they are definitely inefficient, but even on my Yamaha V2500, I find the sound extremely clean and accurate. I had NAD 770 receiver before which would have been considered far superior to the Yamaha, but in reality, there isn't a lot of difference between the NAD and my Yamaha. I'd say the NAD (which cost twice as much to buy) is about 5% better sounding if I were pressed and I would not bet any real money that I could reliably tell the difference in blind tests. I really like my old NAD but I bought the Yamaha because I needed its switching features, and I don't regret what would have been considered a "downgrade" in audio quality

The best thing for you to do is to buy try it for yourself. Often, retailers do have a return policy so you should take advantage of it. Try the 705 in your own home. I'd say the 705 is the absolute minimum receiver that would do the CM1's any justice. The 805 would be the sweet spot IMO.

Before I moved the CMs into my main room, I had my CM1's connected to a $250 Pioneer receiver. It didn't sound as good as my Yamaha, but again the differences were subtle, and it definitely sounded a bit strained when I ran it at above normal listening volume, but it still managed to sound decent when I turned it down a bit.
post #1480 of 17786
Quote:
Originally Posted by cbibbs View Post

Both B&W dealers I spoke to about the CM1s were concerned about using a "low-end" receiver which in the end sounded like anything you might find at a typical big box store.

After playing around with things in their demo room and trying out different equipment I'd say they're right, but it was barely noticeable to my ear. Now I was upgrading my receiver anyway so I just spent a few dollars more and got a Yamaha 1700 (which they both thought would do fine, even though one of them didn't sell the unit).


The CM1 just has low sensitivity, so you would need 4x the power to drive it to similar dB levels as a standard 89dB speaker.
post #1481 of 17786
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jake Sm View Post

I'm not shopping with your wallet, so that's hard to say, but imo, there's a verybig differance in performance.

I know...

So, what would be the BIGGEST difference between M1 and XT2? Bass (obviously), mid range, high notes... overall sound quality... musicallity? Minding that both will be hooked up to a subwoofer.

Thnx
post #1482 of 17786
Quote:
Originally Posted by warpdrive View Post

Take some grains of salt with that advice. It's completely ridiculous that video capabilies are marketing and you *need* to get Rotel to drive the CM1's. To me, video is VERY important.

I would say the CM1's are a power hungry speaker and that the better the receiver, the better the sound, but I don't agree that you need to get a high end receiver to get good sound. As long as the receiver is working well within its comfort zone, it should sound quite good. The question is whether the 705 is good enough for your situation. I'd say the 705 would work well in a medium sized room driving the CM1's. A medium sized room meaning less than 20x15. That's just an educated guess based my experience with receivers of this price category and power rating. I own a set of CM1s and they are definitely inefficient, but even on my Yamaha V2500, I find the sound extremely clean and accurate. I had NAD 770 receiver before which would have been considered far superior to the Yamaha, but in reality, there isn't a lot of difference between the NAD and my Yamaha. I'd say the NAD (which cost twice as much to buy) is about 5% better sounding if I were pressed and I would not bet any real money that I could reliably tell the difference in blind tests. I really like my old NAD but I bought the Yamaha because I needed its switching features, and I don't regret what would have been considered a "downgrade" in audio quality

The best thing for you to do is to buy try it for yourself. Often, retailers do have a return policy so you should take advantage of it. Try the 705 in your own home. I'd say the 705 is the absolute minimum receiver that would do the CM1's any justice. The 805 would be the sweet spot IMO.

Before I moved the CMs into my main room, I had my CM1's connected to a $250 Pioneer receiver. It didn't sound as good as my Yamaha, but again the differences were subtle, and it definitely sounded a bit strained when I ran it at above normal listening volume, but it still managed to sound decent when I turned it down a bit.


I think I am going to get the Denon 3808ci instead of the onkyo 705. I should be able to fit it in the cabinet because the denon is 16.9", and the cabinet can be 20". , and I think the CM1's will sound better with the denon than with the onkyo.
My room is 12X20
post #1483 of 17786
Quote:
Originally Posted by LTCJack View Post

I think I am going to get the Denon 3808ci instead of the onkyo 705.


GOOD choice! And no, I'm not a "fan-boy". I am getting a HK receiver + external video scaler.

I thought about the Onkyo 875 w/ Reon.
post #1484 of 17786
Quote:
Originally Posted by LTCJack View Post

I think the CM1's will sound better with the denon than with the onkyo.
My room is 12X20

I have had Denon and Onkyo amps before and I would not make any such conclusions that one brand is better than the other sonically. But you should definitely be fine with the Denon. It should be well built and sound very good with the CM
post #1485 of 17786
Quote:
Originally Posted by warpdrive View Post

I have had Denon and Onkyo amps before and I would not make any such conclusions that one brand is better than the other sonically. But you should definitely be fine with the Denon. It should be well built and sound very good with the CM

I will get the denon due to size constraints. the onkyo 875 is a touch big, and the 3808 is better than the 705....i think.....
post #1486 of 17786
Quote:
Originally Posted by LTCJack View Post

I will get the denon due to size constraints. the onkyo 875 is a touch big, and the 3808 is better than the 705....i think.....

Yeah, the 875 is a monster. It barely fit into my rack and weights a ton.

Let us know what you think of the 3808 paired with the CM's.
post #1487 of 17786
Quote:
Originally Posted by warpdrive View Post

Yeah, the 875 is a monster. It barely fit into my rack and weights a ton.

Let us know what you think of the 3808 paired with the CM's.

If I were to buy an amplifier to help the denon 3808ci to drive the cm1's 5.1 system what amp would you recommend from rotel?
post #1488 of 17786
Quote:
Originally Posted by LTCJack View Post

If I were to buy an amplifier to help the denon 3808ci to drive the cm1's 5.1 system what amp would you recommend from rotel?

If your room is roughly 17x12x9, the RB-1070 would work fine. If you have any doubts, the RB-1080 would be your choice.
post #1489 of 17786
Quote:
Originally Posted by LTCJack View Post

If I were to buy an amplifier to help the denon 3808ci to drive the cm1's 5.1 system what amp would you recommend from rotel?

For 5 channel, you should look at the RB-1075 (120W) and the RB-1095(200W). There is also the ICEPower 1077, which is a 7 channel 100W, but I dont have the experience with the new ICEPower stuff to recommend it.
post #1490 of 17786
Quote:
Originally Posted by LTCJack View Post

If I were to buy an amplifier to help the denon 3808ci to drive the cm1's 5.1 system what amp would you recommend from rotel?

Are you still constrained about the size? The RMB1075 would be a great amp to bring the best out of your CMs and any other speaker you might consider in the future for your size room
post #1491 of 17786
Both the rmb 1075 and the rmb 1077 should fit in my cabinet. Now, if I have a 5.1 system in one room, plus 2 ceiling speakers above the bar in another room, does that mean that I need the rmb 1077 because it drives 7 channels?
post #1492 of 17786
Quote:
Originally Posted by LTCJack View Post

Both the rmb 1075 and the rmb 1077 should fit in my cabinet. Now, if I have a 5.1 system in one room, plus 2 ceiling speakers above the bar in another room, does that mean that I need the rmb 1077 because it drives 7 channels?

Not necessarily, if your receiver has a powered zone 2, you can use it's amps to power the other speakers. In fact, I only use an external amp for my front 3 and use the receiver to power everything else.
post #1493 of 17786
Thread Starter 
post #1494 of 17786
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jake Sm View Post

685 award from EISA

these new (600 Series) line definitely have a lot of great B&W technology for the price, too bad they are wrapped in vinyl (although I guess that helps with the lower cost).
post #1495 of 17786
Thread Starter 
Quote:


these new (600 Series) line definitely have a lot of great B&W technology for the price, too bad they are wrapped in vinyl (although I guess that helps with the lower cost).

Yeah, but there are a lot of other speakers that are also and some people would rather see the real wood go before any other comprimise was made. I like the Revel Concertas too.
post #1496 of 17786
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jake Sm View Post

Yeah, but there are a lot of other speakers that are also and some people would rather see the real wood go before any other comprimise was made. I like the Revel Concertas too.

I'm hoping B&W [really] does expand their CM-Series line. The new 600-Series line is very complete, while the CM-Series is, essentially, limited to one (or two) set-up possibilities- ie. either using CM1's (for front and/or rears), CM-Center, with a sub. Or CM7 (fronts), CM-Center, CM1 or CM7 (rears), combined with a sub.

I would like to see a new full 3-way CM-Series center, or "LCR". Also would like to see a CM bi-pole rear model added to complete the line.

The new 600-series features two floorstanding models, two center models, two bookshelf models, one bi-pole rear model, and three subwoofers.
post #1497 of 17786
Thread Starter 
Quote:


I would like to see a new full 3-way CM-Series center, or "LCR". Also would like to see a CM bi-pole rear model added to complete the line.

I'd suspect you'll get your wish and one more (larger) bookshelf speaker too, as well as at least one more floorstanding (maybe two) , but not until '08...they're just begining to get the 68 series up to speed.

The CM1 was part response to compaints of a gap the CM2's used to fill, part an experiment of how to do a baby 805 and part goof/luck, I suspect...the making of a full line out of it is simply a tribute to it's success and the feeling that they could come up with a better sounding less expensive replacement line for the 700's that were getting a bit long in the tooth.
I am also guessing they are going to be taking a hard look at how QC, COSTS, AND OTHER ISSUES PAN OUT WITH USING THE ROTEL FACILITY.
post #1498 of 17786
I impulsively bought a second HTM to go side by side with an existing HTM to go under a 123" screen to improve the soundstage. Im using 802's as the L-R speakers. Now Im reading that this is a bad idea. Anybody having success B&W speakers in a dual center speaker configuration?
Thanks.
Tim
post #1499 of 17786
Quote:
Originally Posted by timatraw View Post

I impulsively bought a second HTM to go side by side with an existing HTM to go under a 123" screen to improve the soundstage. Im using 802's as the L-R speakers. Now Im reading that this is a bad idea. Anybody having success B&W speakers in a dual center speaker configuration?
Thanks.
Tim

This is problematic if you are sending the same signal to both HTMs. The problem is that if you have the same sound coming from two sources, and those two sources are separated by more than 1/2 the wavelength of that sound, you will get lobbing effects.
post #1500 of 17786
I know there has been some discussion of the differences between these two models which seems to lean toward the conclusion that the two are so similar as to render the price difference questionable. I did an A/B on them in the local dealer this morning and came away a bit confused by it all, to be honest. The system was all Classe (the amps were large 400w monos, with Transparent cable). I had previously heard and loved the 802D and briefly heard the 800D in a different room that same day, concluding they sounded pretty much the same. Today, with both in the same room and connected to the same gear I put them through a range of music from solo cello, solo voice, voice and chamber orchestra, quartet, jazz and hard rock. I thought the 800D were clearly better but it's not easy to put my finger on why -- it's not that they had more bass or 'went lower' but they did seem to resolve detail better, to soundstage more clearly (the stage on the Verdi piece was outlined to the point that the differences between the singers voices sounded real and measurable in physical space!) and just to provide a little more air between instruments. I wondered if the dealer was messing with the volume but he wasn't, all he did was switch speaker cables back and forth for me. Not sure if there is a sensitivity difference between the two that might effect the perception of detail but there was no track on which I felt the 800D were not just that bit better.

I suppose my confusion comes from not really understanding WHY this is so if, as seems to be argued, these two models are really very similar except for the woofer size. The dealer claimed the mid and tweeters are identical yet it was often in the mids that I thought the differences lay. I actually hate this result because I was really close to pulling the trigger on the 802D and if they had sounded as close to the 800D as I hoped then it would be a case of finding a 'bargain' (as much as any $12k speaker can be so described) but I am left with the horrible feeling that even if I did buy them, I'd spend the next few years wishing I had found the extra cash for the 800D...and of course, if I can find that much cash should I now be looking at others in the 18-20k range....Arg.....This is to be the last pair of speakers (maybe) for me, at least for a decade anyhow and I want to be happy with my purchase.

I wonder if it is possible that the relative positions of the speakers caused some of the differences I perceived. The 800Ds were set up in the outer position, the others inside them which may have constrained the soundstaging of the 802Ds but as you appreciate from the size of these speakers, shifting them around the auditioning space was not on the dealer's agenda. Of course, I might be trying to just find a way of convincing myself that there is no real difference between these two....my head tells me they may spec very closely but my ears and heart tell me the 800D's are better.......and to add to the confusion I just think the 802D looks better (I really don't like that silver plinth on the 800D). I don't really have a question here, it's more a case of sharing my pain but if anyone else has done a recent comparison under similar circumstances, I'd love to hear from them. Or, if anyone can explain why there is almost 100lbs difference between the weight of an 800D and 802D, then please let me know -- the dealer couldn't explain this and suggested it's the plinth.
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