So I got my SS8s (and HT2C) a week or so ago.
I posted a mini-review over on audiocircle, but wanted to add a few things here.
First off, I got this finish (pictures taken by Salk prior to shipping):
Here are some in-home pictures:
The ceiling mounted speakers in the last photo are Mirage OMD 5s used as surrounds/rears (there are 2 more not shown in the photo).
The subs (there is a 2nd one not shown in the pic) are Rythmik F15HPs
I am very happy with the finish on the Salks.
Installation of the plinth & spiked feet for the SS8s was painless.
For the HT2C, I got some vinyl bumpers and put 4 on the bottom, and it is sitting on my TV/HT shelving right under my TV (3rd picture above).
I'm running them with open backs for the time being.
I do have some absorption behind them, but haven't adjusted it yet to make sure its covering first reflection points.
I did play a LITTLE with the positioning and did some measurements (more on that below).
I'm powering them with a W4S MC3x500 (>1000W into 4 ohms per channel). This thing is a monster--after hours of operation, its cooler than my receiver, which is barely doing anything (preamp, and a bit of surround to the OMDs when we were watching TV).
Warm, but not hot. (The receiver, a Denon 4311CI, gets hot)
I did run Audyssey MultEQ XT32.
I'll get the HT2C out of the way: While doing some minor break-in last night I was running my fronts & center in multi-channel stereo. The center does subtract from the sound quality.
That said, it is still a great speaker. I can't fault it for not being able to keep up with the SS8s--I wouldn't expect it to.
My wife & I watched some TV on the system for a while, and I am very pleased with the center. Crisp and clear, great detail.
So, what about the SS8s?
- I forgot that I had set my receiver (used as a pre-amp) to custom settings in stereo mode (I haven't had any speakers for a while, as I blew one of my OMD 15s which I had been using, and waited it out while my SS8s were built).
It was set to treat the fronts as large (I have no idea why, I always ran the OMD 15s with my subs...)
I didn't really notice a difference (though it has been months since I heard my subs).
I only realized what was going on when I busted out REW and saw a very sharp falloff below 20hz (the subs generally are relatively flat in REW all the way down to 0 hz, though there are some dips between 8 & 14 hz depending on where I put the subs).
Before that falloff, they were as flat as my subs. (I have a room node around 22hz, which probably helped them stay in the game down to 20hz)
I hadn't been testing with seriously low bass though. I went back and did so--they did fine.
My conclusion? They have really good bass.
When I did a direct compare, there is a slight difference (crossing them at 60 or 80, not really when crossing at 40) in some material (with a slight preference to subs, but it wasn't a blind test, so that is suspect) , but I don't think I'd notice it without a direct comparison.
And though I did run Audyssey and it set trims for everything, there is likely a slight difference in the volume level.
On really low bass (e.g., LMFAO), the subs sounded better, but on most other material, I wouldn't be able to indicate whether it was the SS8s or the subs.
I didn't crank the volume to incredible levels, but at 80-90 db, i wasn't noticing any significant difference on most material.
- The detail of these speakers is crazy good. Vocals sound really good, though with a slight echoing quality (very slight), almost as if the recording was made in a large room. This was more noticeable with some songs than others.
This will likely clean up when I get my sound panels into the right positions. I may also play with the acoustic foam. I briefly tried completely blocking off the rear chamber, but preferred it open.
- They have good imaging as well.
- They really do fade into the background
- My neighbor (who is not an audio enthusiast per se, but has listened to a lot of different speakers) says they are the most musical speakers he has ever heard.
Prior to my getting these, he was telling me I should go for electrostatic speakers because they are so incredible on the high end. He thinks these are better now.
He always thought my bass was the best he had heard (the Rythmiks really are fantastic), and now he thinks my whole system matches that quality.
I agree.Edited by Morik - 1/4/13 at 2:03pm