Speaker sale got me crazed, thoughts on Sony Core downsize? - Page 6 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #151 of 282 Old 11-22-2017, 10:20 PM
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I also wonder if I should run 2 of the bookshelves as center, wired in series? Center channel is the most imp in HT and I have an extra speaker anyway. My speakers won't be here till Nov 29 though so its a long wait.
Use one only as a center
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post #152 of 282 Old 11-22-2017, 11:30 PM - Thread Starter
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Well, i've received them and hooked them up. I listened at some pretty quiet levels for a few minutes, maybe -40 on average due to noise considerations. I also listened exclusively to music rather than a movie. Both of those things are uncharacteristic of my application (I'm usually around -20 and -15; and I bought these for HT), so I don't want to draw too many conclusions. I anticipate to do much more testing in the coming days though.

My first impressions:

Build quality:
- The cabinet is a lot nicer then I thought it would be.. much more "solid" then I thought for something this cheap. It's nowhere near as heavy as the rp-160m's, and much much smaller in size.
- The woofers really are paper , very thin and fragile compared to the metallic woofers on the Klipsch. The tiniest poke will depress the woofer. I suspect this is one reason people report it can't do very well at loud volumes. I would keep the grill on the speaker.
- The binding posts remarkably look much higher quality then I expected too.
- Overall good signs physically

Sound:
Well, I do have some thoughts about sound. But listening at -40 won't be any worthwhile indication. I had a couple of sentences written here, but I removed them and think it's best if I wait to do some "real" testing.
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post #153 of 282 Old 11-23-2017, 11:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gygess View Post
Well, i've received them and hooked them up. I listened at some pretty quiet levels for a few minutes, maybe -40 on average due to noise considerations. I also listened exclusively to music rather than a movie. Both of those things are uncharacteristic of my application (I'm usually around -20 and -15; and I bought these for HT), so I don't want to draw too many conclusions. I anticipate to do much more testing in the coming days though.

My first impressions:

Build quality:
- The cabinet is a lot nicer then I thought it would be.. much more "solid" then I thought for something this cheap. It's nowhere near as heavy as the rp-160m's, and much much smaller in size.
- The woofers really are paper , very thin and fragile compared to the metallic woofers on the Klipsch. The tiniest poke will depress the woofer. I suspect this is one reason people report it can't do very well at loud volumes. I would keep the grill on the speaker.
- The binding posts remarkably look much higher quality then I expected too.
- Overall good signs physically

Sound:
Well, I do have some thoughts about sound. But listening at -40 won't be any worthwhile indication. I had a couple of sentences written here, but I removed them and think it's best if I wait to do some "real" testing.
Helpful...maybe:
• The SS-CS5 images better, i.e., presents a stronger, clearer soundstage, without the grills. I generally prefer to leave the grills on in a bright, lively listening room. (Yep, this is just my opinion.)
• The speaker terminals are plastic. The soft rubber caps (red and black) are easy to remove and accept [well, sort of] banana plugs. In contrast, Pioneer BS22's terminals are metal, no issues.
• The woofers are faintly blue-ish—"Mica Reinforced Cellular Fiber Woofers," according to the company.

Enjoy!
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post #154 of 282 Old 11-23-2017, 11:39 AM
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Helpful...maybe:
• The SS-CS5 images better, i.e., presents a stronger, clearer soundstage, without the grills. I generally prefer to leave the grills on in a bright, lively listening room. (Yep, this is just my opinion.)
• The speaker terminals are plastic. The soft rubber caps (red and black) are easy to remove and accept [well, sort of] banana plugs. In contrast, Pioneer BS22's terminals are metal, no issues.
• The woofers are faintly blue-ish—"Mica Reinforced Cellular Fiber Woofers," according to the company.
Yes the woofers are more than paper -- yes they have good imaging and soundstage presentation, and most speakers for music sound better with the grills removed -- as with most speakers from around $200 down, they are not made for extreme loudness -- the Sony started at $219 a pair and has a build quality higher than $100 -- my guess is that Sony needs to move some stock, and this is a good time to jump on them.

The Sony has and will make a lot of people happy.
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post #155 of 282 Old 11-23-2017, 10:09 PM - Thread Starter
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Okay, I've listened more and done a few tests. Look forward to just a brief and casual write up tomorrow afternoon, a mini face off (if you will) between the Cores and the RP160m/RP-250c
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post #156 of 282 Old 11-24-2017, 02:28 AM
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Fingers crossed, and I'm hoping for good news
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After some more testing I have decided to stick with the Cores. My simple advice is also that anyone considering speakers under $300 to buy these while you can at $75, since you can always return them. On the whole, what is to follow is not the most scientific nor the most comprehensive test; I wouldn’t take anything conclusively, and neither should you. In many ways, one may reasonably wonder if there is any competition at all: the Klipsch should (and does) win on almost all accounts. This brief write up may therefore seem unnecessary… well you can decide for yourself.

Build Quality:
The Klipsch wins here hands down. From all the way from the packaging to the cabinet to the grills, the Klipsch appears to be of much higher quality. The cabinet is much heavier then the Cores, the magnetic grills are easy to take one and off and they are without any worry of vibrations, the terminals are solid, and the woofers appear to be just as well built as they are sexy.

The Cores build quality are undeniably impressive for the price however, and as Ziegl mentioned, something like their build quality really should be compared at their original $200 price point. By all means, I think Sony has built a quality product, and they’ve historically (regardless of speakers) produced high quality products anyways. Like I said earlier, the woofers are very thin and soft, something I suspect limits it’s composure at the highest volumes.

Sound Quality:
Disclaimers: All db references are not with an SPL meter, they are simply what the receiver displayed. The individual channel level trim also varied a few db below 0 between different speakers. I listened at around -10db with all the EQ settings set to OFF with my Denon 1612. And I also listened at -20db with the standard Audyssey EQ enabled, Dynamic EQ off (Dynamic volume off) too. The -20 EQ was slightly louder sounding then the -10 "off". I’m not too concerned with the differences, and I won’t be getting into the finest details of describing the sound. I sat roughly 10 feet away. The center core was vertical- the RP-250c was horizontal. My past experience is not particularly “high end”: I have owned polk speakers, bose acoustimass speakers, some ancient Wharfedale 8” bookshelfs (valdus 300). Throughout this test, other than keeping in mind my past speakers, I primarily used a pair of Sony MDR-7506 to also compare (they are said to be very neutral headphones). On that note: both speakers, for the most part, provide faithful and enjoyable reproduction of the content I fed through. Also, for the most part, they were crossed over at 80hz to an Emotiva Basx 12- except for when I make any remarks about the bass, for that's when I turned it off specifically.

Music -
Moby - Extreme ways
Roy Hargrove Quintet - Strasbourg st denis
Soundgarden - Burden in my hand
Calvin Harris - Flashback
R.E.M - Losing my Religion
David Byrne and St Vincent - The Forest Awakes
Bjork - Venus as a boy

My general impressions:
-There are songs where the Rp-160m’s really make the music “come to life”, and I suspect it’s the slightly brighter tuning that accounts for this. For example, in the Moby, Soundgarden, and R.E.M, the electric guitars just seem just the ever so slightest bit more “electric” and alive. The crash and ride cymbals in Soundgarden were very clear and natural from both the Klipsch and the Cores. Both have good resolution in that regard.

- On the other hand, there are some songs that the Klipsch kind of seems lifeless too, or almost unenjoyable. Jazz music like Strasbourg st denis particularly sounded better with the Cores, at the most “crowded” moments, the Cores just maintained that bit of character whereas the RP-160m’s were almost too transparent and slightly harsh. Similar principle went for the Calvin Harris where the RP-160m was nice and loud and electric sounding (which was good), but it kind of got tiresome by the end of the song, whereas the Cores were consistent throughout.

- Finally, for Bjork’s song, I felt like the RP-160m’s didn’t particularly match the subtleness of the song, and some of the bell/jingle notes sounded more balanced on the Cores.

- As for bass, the RP-160m did a much better job with David Byrne w/ St Vincent. There’s a part in the song that gets pretty low, and it pretty much requires a subwoofer to get it right (so neither of the 2 speakers actually pulled it off), but the RP-160m just had a slight edge to the Cores. I suspect the 6.5” woofers account for this.

- The RP-160m also had a slight edge in the above song in terms of soundstage or overall largeness of sound. Both speakers did a good job of pulling off that “rising/flooding in the music” effect- again, there’s a part in the song towards the end that particularly shows this. But the RP-160m had the edge.

-------------------------------------------------------------------
Movies (my primary usage, and this is also where the RP-250c comes into play):
The Dark Knight
Cloud Atlas
Inception

Overall, the differences here were minute. A few key observations though

- The vocal clarity of the RP-250c may just be the slightest bit clearer in terms of sheer dialogue intelligibility. Cloud atlas is one of the best tests for this, as the voices can be very unclear at times, particularly in the post apocalyptic segments. But I believe this comes at a cost. See, one of my complaints with the RP-250c is how voices can border on tinny or boxed in, it’s hard to explain. The RP-250c also doesn’t dig anywhere as deep as a Core bookshelf. So in short: the Cores actually present a much more natural (deeper in tone, as well as just sense of “depth”) voice then the RP-250c- while still being plenty clear for dialogue intelligibility. I suspect the RP-450c is worth it over the RP-250c as it should solve this complaint.

- On the other hand, the RP-250c also just seems the ever so slightest bit “larger” in it’s output, and almost “taller”. I suspect this is because of perhaps a wider vertical dispersion from the horn giving a slightly larger sound. But I must stress that this is a super small difference, it took me a while to notice this.

- Other than that, the Klipsch probably had the edge in some of the most demanding scenes played at the highest of volumes. What comes to mind is the truck chase in the Dark Knight and mombasa in Inception, these are particularly “busy” scenes, and the Klipsch has all the dynamicness for them (and then some). This isn’t to say the Cores didn’t do well. In fact, I was amazed at how little difference I could tell, and they still sound amazing too. The Klipsch nonetheless take the cake, if I was forced to choose.

- Finally, as the center channel carries more than just dialogue (with music and effects also being fed through it), I just can’t help but think the Cores provide a more satisfying sound for all that other stuff then the RP-250c.

------------------------------------------------------------------
To sum up:
Despite the Klipsch setup probably being better in absolute terms: I am keeping the Cores, and selling the Klipsch. At $150 for a front 3, with a spare speaker too, that provide exactly what I need and get so close to the Klipsch, I just can’t see how it’s reasonable to return the Cores. In my eyes, this may be considered a “downgrade” but only in so far as returning a lamborghini aventador and getting a huracan would be a “downgrade”. Both are excellent, but when price is taken into account, there really is only one winner.. And dare I say it: no contest. Having said that, at the retail price of $150, to spend $300 on this front 3, hmm, I may have kept the Klipsch.. I’m not too sure. I must disclaim I probably don’t listen as loud as many of the folks on this forum do. If you are in a small room (which I was not), or if you plan on sitting within 10ft of the speakers, or if reference level is just obscenely loud to your ears (as it is with mine), I really can’t see why anybody would buy the Klipsch setup over the Cores. Even if I were to listen at very loud volumes a couple of times a year, I’m just not sure if the extra money is really worth it for that capability. I pretty much shrug my shoulders at this thought.. And I pretty much shrugged my shoulders at all of the small differences I found between the Cores and Klipsch; you really had to listen for them.

Thanks for reading! My hope is that this can at least add a smudge to the melting pot of ideas.. I don’t want to assert any more authority on the subject then that. Hopefully my impressions can at least help a few people looking back on this thread.
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Last edited by gygess; 11-24-2017 at 03:14 PM.
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post #158 of 282 Old 11-24-2017, 01:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gygess View Post
After some more testing I have decided to stick with the Cores. My simple advice is also that anyone considering speakers under $300 to buy these while you can at $75, since you can always return them. On the whole, what is to follow is not the most scientific nor the most comprehensive test; I wouldn’t take anything conclusively, and neither should you. In many ways, one may reasonably wonder if there is any competition at all: the Klipsch should (and does) win on almost all accounts. This brief write up may therefore seem unnecessary… well you can decide for yourself.

Build Quality:
The Klipsch wins here hands down. From all the way from the packaging to the cabinet to the grills, the Klipsch appears to be of much higher quality. The cabinet is much heavier then the Cores, the magnetic grills are easy to take one and off and they are without any worry of vibrations, the terminals are solid, and the woofers appear to be just as well built as they are sexy.

The Cores build quality are undeniably impressive for the price however, and as Ziegl mentioned, something like their build quality really should be compared at their original $200 price point. By all means, I think Sony has built a quality product, and they’ve historically (regardless of speakers) produced high quality products anyways. Like I said earlier, the woofers are very thin and soft, something I suspect limits it’s composure at the highest volumes.

Sound Quality:
Disclaimers: All db references are not with an SPL meter, they are simply what the receiver displayed. The individual channel level trim also varied a few db below 0 between different speakers. I listened at around -10db with all the EQ settings set to OFF with my Denon 1612. And I also listened at -20db with the standard Audyssey EQ enabled, Dynamic EQ off (Dynamic volume off) too. The -20 EQ was slightly louder sounding then the -10 "off". I’m not too concerned with the differences, and I won’t be getting into the finest details of describing the sound. I sat roughly 10 feet away. The center core was vertical- the RP-250c was horizontal. My past experience is not particularly “high end”: I have owned polk speakers, bose acoustimass speakers, some ancient Wharfedale 8” bookshelfs (valdus 300). Throughout this test, other than keeping in mind my past speakers, I primarily used a pair of Sony MDR-7506 to also compare (they are said to be very neutral headphones).

Music -
Moby - Extreme ways
Roy Hargrove Quintet - Strasbourg st denis
Soundgarden - Burden in my hand
Calvin Harris - Flashback
R.E.M - Losing my Religion
David Byrne and St Vincent - The Forest Awakes
Bjork - Venus as a boy

My general impressions:
-There are songs where the Rp-160m’s really make the music “come to life”, and I suspect it’s the slightly brighter tuning that accounts for this. For example, in the Moby, Soundgarden, and R.E.M, the electric guitars just seem just the ever so slightest bit more “electric” and alive. The crash and ride cymbals in Soundgarden were very clear and natural from both the Klipsch and the Cores. Both have good resolution in that regard.

- On the other hand, there are some songs that the Klipsch kind of seems lifeless too, or almost unenjoyable. Jazz music like Strasbourg st denis particularly sounded better with the Cores, at the most “crowded” moments, the Cores just maintained that bit of character whereas the RP-160m’s were almost too transparent and slightly harsh. Similar principle went for the Calvin Harris where the RP-160m was nice and loud and electric sounding (which was good), but it kind of got tiresome by the end of the song, whereas the Cores were consistent throughout.

- Finally, for Bjork’s song, I felt like the RP-160m’s didn’t particularly match the subtleness of the song, and some of the bell/jingle notes sounded more balanced on the Cores.

- As for bass, the RP-160m did a much better job with David Byrne w/ St Vincent. There’s a part in the song that gets pretty low, and it pretty much requires a subwoofer to get it right (so neither of the 2 speakers actually pulled it off), but the RP-160m just had a slight edge to the Cores. I suspect the 6.5” woofers account for this.

- The RP-160m also had a slight edge in the above song in terms of soundstage or overall largeness of sound. Both speakers did a good job of pulling off that “rising/flooding in the music” effect- again, there’s a part in the song towards the end that particularly shows this.

-------------------------------------------------------------------
Movies (my primary usage, and this is also where the RP-250c comes into play):
The Dark Knight
Cloud Atlas
Inception

Overall, the differences here were minute. A few key observations though

- The vocal clarity of the RP-250c may just be the slightest bit clearer in terms of sheer dialogue intelligibility. Cloud atlas is one of the best tests for this, as the voices can be very unclear at times, particularly in the post apocalyptic segments. But I believe this comes at a cost. See, one of my complaints with the RP-250c is how voices can border on tinny or boxed in, it’s hard to explain. The RP-250c also doesn’t dig anywhere as deep as a Core bookshelf. So in short: the Cores actually present a much more natural (deeper in tone, as well as just sense of “depth”) voice then the RP-250c- while still being plenty clear for dialogue intelligibility. I suspect the RP-450c over the RP-250c as it should solve this complaint.

- On the other hand, the RP-250c also just seems the ever so slightest bit “larger” in it’s output, and almost “taller”. I suspect this is because of perhaps a wider vertical dispersion from the horn giving a slightly larger sound. But I must stress that this is a super small difference, it took me a while to notice this.

- Other than that, the Klipsch probably had the edge in some of the most demanding scenes played at the highest of volumes. What comes to mind is the truck chase in the Dark Knight and mombasa in Inception, these are particularly “busy” scenes, and the Klipsch has all the dynamicness for them (and then some). This isn’t to say the Cores didn’t do well. In fact, I was amazed at how little difference I could tell, and they still sound amazing too. The Klipsch nonetheless take the cake, if I was forced to choose.

- Finally, as the center channel carries more than just dialogue (with music and effects also being fed through it), I just can’t help but think the Cores provide a more satisfying sound for all that other stuff then the RP-250c.

------------------------------------------------------------------
To sum up:
Despite the Klipsch setup probably being better in absolute terms: I am keeping the Cores, and selling the Klipsch. At $150 for a front 3, with a spare speaker too, that provide exactly what I need and get so close to the Klipsch, I just can’t see how it’s reasonable to return the Cores. In my eyes, this may be considered a “downgrade” but only in so far as returning a lamborghini aventador and getting a huracan would be a “downgrade”. Both are excellent, but when price is taken into account, there really is only one winner.. And dare I say it: no contest. Having said that, at the retail price of $150, to spend $300 on this front 3, hmm, I may have kept the Klipsch.. I’m not too sure. I must disclaim I probably don’t listen as loud as many of the folks on this forum do. If you are in a small room (which I was not), or if you plan on sitting within 10ft of the speakers, or if reference level is just obscenely loud to your ears (as it is with mine), I really can’t see why anybody would buy the Klipsch setup over the Cores. Even if I were to listen at very loud volumes a couple of times a year, I’m just not sure if the extra money is really worth it for that capability. I pretty much shrug my shoulders at this thought.. And I pretty much shrugged my shoulders at all of the small differences I found between the Cores and Klipsch; you really had to listen for them.

Thanks for reading! My hope is that this can at least add a smudge to the melting pot of ideas.. I don’t want to assert any more authority on the subject then that. Hopefully my impressions can at least help a few people looking back on this thread.
that's a nice job .. very good review..thanks

YAMAHA TSR 5790.. front l/r emotiva b1's and /or kef q100's ..BIC v1220.....Emotiva basx10.... ascend cbm 170 center.. polk t15 rears..samsung 55" j620d
bedroom .. YAMAHA r-xv 383... front l/r.. wharfedale 10.1s... ascend cbm 170 center ... Emotiva basx8... samsung ku6300 50 in
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that's a nice job .. very good review..thanks
Thanks, took me a bit longer then I wanted, but it also carried with it a big decision rather than just being a casual hobbyist review
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Thanks, took me a bit longer then I wanted, but it also carried with it a big decision rather than just being a casual hobbyist review
They have surprised many people -- Sony put a lot of work in them

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post #161 of 282 Old 11-24-2017, 02:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gygess View Post
After some more testing I have decided to stick with the Cores. My simple advice is also that anyone considering speakers under $300 to buy these while you can at $75, since you can always return them. On the whole, what is to follow is not the most scientific nor the most comprehensive test; I wouldn’t take anything conclusively, and neither should you. In many ways, one may reasonably wonder if there is any competition at all: the Klipsch should (and does) win on almost all accounts. This brief write up may therefore seem unnecessary… well you can decide for yourself.

Build Quality:
The Klipsch wins here hands down. From all the way from the packaging to the cabinet to the grills, the Klipsch appears to be of much higher quality. The cabinet is much heavier then the Cores, the magnetic grills are easy to take one and off and they are without any worry of vibrations, the terminals are solid, and the woofers appear to be just as well built as they are sexy.

The Cores build quality are undeniably impressive for the price however, and as Ziegl mentioned, something like their build quality really should be compared at their original $200 price point. By all means, I think Sony has built a quality product, and they’ve historically (regardless of speakers) produced high quality products anyways. Like I said earlier, the woofers are very thin and soft, something I suspect limits it’s composure at the highest volumes.

Sound Quality:
Disclaimers: All db references are not with an SPL meter, they are simply what the receiver displayed. The individual channel level trim also varied a few db below 0 between different speakers. I listened at around -10db with all the EQ settings set to OFF with my Denon 1612. And I also listened at -20db with the standard Audyssey EQ enabled, Dynamic EQ off (Dynamic volume off) too. The -20 EQ was slightly louder sounding then the -10 "off". I’m not too concerned with the differences, and I won’t be getting into the finest details of describing the sound. I sat roughly 10 feet away. The center core was vertical- the RP-250c was horizontal. My past experience is not particularly “high end”: I have owned polk speakers, bose acoustimass speakers, some ancient Wharfedale 8” bookshelfs (valdus 300). Throughout this test, other than keeping in mind my past speakers, I primarily used a pair of Sony MDR-7506 to also compare (they are said to be very neutral headphones). On that note: both speakers, for the most part, provide faithful and enjoyable reproduction of the content I fed through. Also, for the most part, they were crossed over at 80hz to an Emotiva Basx 12- except for when I make any remarks about the bass, for that's when I turned it off specifically.

Music -
Moby - Extreme ways
Roy Hargrove Quintet - Strasbourg st denis
Soundgarden - Burden in my hand
Calvin Harris - Flashback
R.E.M - Losing my Religion
David Byrne and St Vincent - The Forest Awakes
Bjork - Venus as a boy

My general impressions:
-There are songs where the Rp-160m’s really make the music “come to life”, and I suspect it’s the slightly brighter tuning that accounts for this. For example, in the Moby, Soundgarden, and R.E.M, the electric guitars just seem just the ever so slightest bit more “electric” and alive. The crash and ride cymbals in Soundgarden were very clear and natural from both the Klipsch and the Cores. Both have good resolution in that regard.

- On the other hand, there are some songs that the Klipsch kind of seems lifeless too, or almost unenjoyable. Jazz music like Strasbourg st denis particularly sounded better with the Cores, at the most “crowded” moments, the Cores just maintained that bit of character whereas the RP-160m’s were almost too transparent and slightly harsh. Similar principle went for the Calvin Harris where the RP-160m was nice and loud and electric sounding (which was good), but it kind of got tiresome by the end of the song, whereas the Cores were consistent throughout.

- Finally, for Bjork’s song, I felt like the RP-160m’s didn’t particularly match the subtleness of the song, and some of the bell/jingle notes sounded more balanced on the Cores.

- As for bass, the RP-160m did a much better job with David Byrne w/ St Vincent. There’s a part in the song that gets pretty low, and it pretty much requires a subwoofer to get it right (so neither of the 2 speakers actually pulled it off), but the RP-160m just had a slight edge to the Cores. I suspect the 6.5” woofers account for this.

- The RP-160m also had a slight edge in the above song in terms of soundstage or overall largeness of sound. Both speakers did a good job of pulling off that “rising/flooding in the music” effect- again, there’s a part in the song towards the end that particularly shows this. But the RP-160m had the edge.

-------------------------------------------------------------------
Movies (my primary usage, and this is also where the RP-250c comes into play):
The Dark Knight
Cloud Atlas
Inception

Overall, the differences here were minute. A few key observations though

- The vocal clarity of the RP-250c may just be the slightest bit clearer in terms of sheer dialogue intelligibility. Cloud atlas is one of the best tests for this, as the voices can be very unclear at times, particularly in the post apocalyptic segments. But I believe this comes at a cost. See, one of my complaints with the RP-250c is how voices can border on tinny or boxed in, it’s hard to explain. The RP-250c also doesn’t dig anywhere as deep as a Core bookshelf. So in short: the Cores actually present a much more natural (deeper in tone, as well as just sense of “depth”) voice then the RP-250c- while still being plenty clear for dialogue intelligibility. I suspect the RP-450c over the RP-250c as it should solve this complaint.

- On the other hand, the RP-250c also just seems the ever so slightest bit “larger” in it’s output, and almost “taller”. I suspect this is because of perhaps a wider vertical dispersion from the horn giving a slightly larger sound. But I must stress that this is a super small difference, it took me a while to notice this.

- Other than that, the Klipsch probably had the edge in some of the most demanding scenes played at the highest of volumes. What comes to mind is the truck chase in the Dark Knight and mombasa in Inception, these are particularly “busy” scenes, and the Klipsch has all the dynamicness for them (and then some). This isn’t to say the Cores didn’t do well. In fact, I was amazed at how little difference I could tell, and they still sound amazing too. The Klipsch nonetheless take the cake, if I was forced to choose.

- Finally, as the center channel carries more than just dialogue (with music and effects also being fed through it), I just can’t help but think the Cores provide a more satisfying sound for all that other stuff then the RP-250c.

------------------------------------------------------------------
To sum up:
Despite the Klipsch setup probably being better in absolute terms: I am keeping the Cores, and selling the Klipsch. At $150 for a front 3, with a spare speaker too, that provide exactly what I need and get so close to the Klipsch, I just can’t see how it’s reasonable to return the Cores. In my eyes, this may be considered a “downgrade” but only in so far as returning a lamborghini aventador and getting a huracan would be a “downgrade”. Both are excellent, but when price is taken into account, there really is only one winner.. And dare I say it: no contest. Having said that, at the retail price of $150, to spend $300 on this front 3, hmm, I may have kept the Klipsch.. I’m not too sure. I must disclaim I probably don’t listen as loud as many of the folks on this forum do. If you are in a small room (which I was not), or if you plan on sitting within 10ft of the speakers, or if reference level is just obscenely loud to your ears (as it is with mine), I really can’t see why anybody would buy the Klipsch setup over the Cores. Even if I were to listen at very loud volumes a couple of times a year, I’m just not sure if the extra money is really worth it for that capability. I pretty much shrug my shoulders at this thought.. And I pretty much shrugged my shoulders at all of the small differences I found between the Cores and Klipsch; you really had to listen for them.

Thanks for reading! My hope is that this can at least add a smudge to the melting pot of ideas.. I don’t want to assert any more authority on the subject then that. Hopefully my impressions can at least help a few people looking back on this thread.
Thanks for taking the time and your excellent review. I still find it a little hard to believe that these speakers (even at the original price point) are comparable to the RP-160M, and which means they are better than the R-15M. $75/pair vs $500/pair is a total no-brainer. The Klipsch have also been compared to the JBL 230, another highly regarded speaker, whose efficiency is lower, so the loudness differences wouldn't come into play.

I am going to get my speakers next week and will try to do a review as well.
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post #162 of 282 Old 11-24-2017, 02:58 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for taking the time and your excellent review. I still find it a little hard to believe that these speakers (even at the original price point) are comparable to the RP-160M, and which means they are better than the R-15M. $75/pair vs $500/pair is a total no-brainer. The Klipsch have also been compared to the JBL 230, another highly regarded speaker, whose efficiency is lower, so the loudness differences wouldn't come into play.

I am going to get my speakers next week and will try to do a review as well.
Perhaps I should have made it more clear: they may be able to compare to the RP-160m, as in get close- but the RP-160m is still better. Also, I got my RP-160m's for $330 as they were pretty much an open-box unit (like-new) on amazon. That's pretty much how I value it too, as I think the $500 retail price is just flat out ridiculous.

The JBL 230 is also highly regarded, but according to one of the shootouts I read here on the forums it was said to be pretty much only good for movies and they're super bassy, whereas for music they had a slightly tiring and unsophisticated sound to them.

On a final note: the fact that I didnt find a wide margin between the RP-160m and the Cores was likely at the volumes I was listening at. They still clearly sounded different, and unique in their own ways. But when it came to negative/positive differences, that's where it becomes harder to outright favor/discount one over the other.

Also, keep in mind what going for the Klipsch means in terms of center channel. IMO the only one that is worth it appears to be the 450c- which is at least $400. Really in two different leagues. I preferred the vertical Core to the horizontal RP-250c.
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See, one of my complaints with the RP-250c is how voices can border on tinny or boxed in, it’s hard to explain. The RP-250c also doesn’t dig anywhere as deep as a Core bookshelf. So in short: the Cores actually present a much more natural (deeper in tone, as well as just sense of “depth”) voice then the RP-250c- while still being plenty clear for dialogue intelligibility. I suspect the RP-450c over the RP-250c as it should solve this complaint.

- On the other hand, the RP-250c also just seems the ever so slightest bit “larger” in it’s output, and almost “taller”. I suspect this is because of perhaps a wider vertical dispersion from the horn giving a slightly larger sound. But I must stress that this is a super small difference, it took me a while to notice this.

...

And I pretty much shrugged my shoulders at all of the small differences I found between the Cores and Klipsch; you really had to listen for them.

Nice review there.

A bit surprised though at the RP-250c vs Core thing though. That is where I expected the Klipsch to beat the Cores handily.

The things I noticed with the Core as a center (vertically) ... soundstage was fine, but not exactly super wide or a huge sound. I just chalked that up to the single driver.

The center I compared it against was an ancient Boston VR 10. My one complaint about the Cores is very different than your conclusion... I found the Core voices leaning a bit bright to my ears. Not bad, and very subjective as to what is preferred, just that voices seemed a tad higher than they should be.

Yet to you, your Klipsch sort of had that problem, or was more 'tinny', however we want to describe it. I found the Core bookshelf to have decent bass, yet it didn't really do the 'deep male voice' thing. More like 'boom boom boom' with music, while voicing was still a bit off/bright.

But that's probably just me, or my ears are just used to how the Boston handles voices.

The 'shrug your shoulders' thing wasn't that different than my reaction too, for HT use, anyway. For music I may think otherwise, but for HT... I can see why someone would just go with Cores over more expensive options. It's sort of the diminishing returns situation... more expensive speakers may be better, but spending 2-3x the price doesn't result in 2-3x improvement.
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Nice review there.

A bit surprised though at the RP-250c vs Core thing though. That is where I expected the Klipsch to beat the Cores handily.

The things I noticed with the Core as a center (vertically) ... soundstage was fine, but not exactly super wide or a huge sound. I just chalked that up to the single driver.

The center I compared it against was an ancient Boston VR 10. My one complaint about the Cores is very different than your conclusion... I found the Core voices leaning a bit bright to my ears. Not bad, and very subjective as to what is preferred, just that voices seemed a tad higher than they should be.

Yet to you, your Klipsch sort of had that problem, or was more 'tinny', however we want to describe it. I found the Core bookshelf to have decent bass, yet it didn't really do the 'deep male voice' thing. More like 'boom boom boom' with music, while voicing was still a bit off/bright.

But that's probably just me, or my ears are just used to how the Boston handles voices.

The 'shrug your shoulders' thing wasn't that different than my reaction too, for HT use, anyway. For music I may think otherwise, but for HT... I can see why someone would just go with Cores over more expensive options. It's sort of the diminishing returns situation... more expensive speakers may be better, but spending 2-3x the price doesn't result in 2-3x improvement.
That's super interesting! I can say despite the RP-160m's still being better than the Cores in absolute terms, that I did actually prefer the vertical Core to the horizontal RP-250c. I just thought the RP-250c was exactly how you described the Cores- too bright, with voices sounding a little higher then they should be, and kind of lacklustre "deep male voice" thing. Coming from 2.0 stereo Wharfedale Valdus bookshelfs, with 8" woofers that can probably do 60hz fine, I could notice how much less "depth" the RP-250c had.

At the volumes I listened at, the Cores provided that more "complete" sound, with enough brightness and detail for clear dialogue and yet enough bass to add depth to all of the other effects and music playing through.

If I had to guess, perhaps at much higher volumes the Cores may not have won against the RP-250c, as clarity could break up, or the "depth" could vanish.. i'm not sure, just a shot in the dark
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That's super interesting! I can say despite the RP-160m's still being better than the Cores in absolute terms, that I did actually prefer the vertical Core to the horizontal RP-250c. I just thought the RP-250c was exactly how you described the Cores- too bright, with voices sounding a little higher then they should be, and kind of lacklustre "deep male voice" thing. Coming from 2.0 stereo Wharfedale Valdus bookshelfs, with 8" woofers that can probably do 60hz fine, I could notice how much less "depth" the RP-250c had.
It's probably just a subjective/relative thing. For instance, if I compared the Cores vs PC2000, I'd probably say the same as you, the Cores had more realistic voices/went deeper and so on. But that'd primarily be just because the PC2000 sounds treble-boosted to me. Our difference of opinion may not even be a difference... it could just be that the Klipsch is in fact rather bright.

And it's not like my Boston goes super deep or anything either... the Cores actually have more bass. Just that the way it handles voices is different. Maybe it's a tweeter thing or the fact the Boston is a 3-way... although it's a weird 3-way w/ one passive driver.

I will say that the Cores handle voice clarity fine though. No knock there, dialogue was easy to understand.
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It's probably just a subjective/relative thing. For instance, if I compared the Cores vs PC2000, I'd probably say the same as you, the Cores had more realistic voices/went deeper and so on. But that'd primarily be just because the PC2000 sounds treble-boosted to me. Our difference of opinion may not even be a difference... it could just be that the Klipsch is in fact rather bright.

And it's not like my Boston goes super deep or anything either... the Cores actually have more bass. Just that the way it handles voices is different. Maybe it's a tweeter thing or the fact the Boston is a 3-way... although it's a weird 3-way w/ one passive driver.

I will say that the Cores handle voice clarity fine though. No knock there, dialogue was easy to understand.
Perhaps it was just a brightness thing, and yeah our difference of opinion may not really be a difference .. Either way, I value the different thoughts on this thread as a whole thus far.

To me the Cores were just that bit more natural then the rp-250c, but I wouldn't be surprised if someone thought the exact opposite either
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Nice review there.

A bit surprised though at the RP-250c vs Core thing though. That is where I expected the Klipsch to beat the Cores handily.

The things I noticed with the Core as a center (vertically) ... soundstage was fine, but not exactly super wide or a huge sound. I just chalked that up to the single driver.

The center I compared it against was an ancient Boston VR 10. My one complaint about the Cores is very different than your conclusion... I found the Core voices leaning a bit bright to my ears. Not bad, and very subjective as to what is preferred, just that voices seemed a tad higher than they should be.

Yet to you, your Klipsch sort of had that problem, or was more 'tinny', however we want to describe it. I found the Core bookshelf to have decent bass, yet it didn't really do the 'deep male voice' thing. More like 'boom boom boom' with music, while voicing was still a bit off/bright.

But that's probably just me, or my ears are just used to how the Boston handles voices.

The 'shrug your shoulders' thing wasn't that different than my reaction too, for HT use, anyway. For music I may think otherwise, but for HT... I can see why someone would just go with Cores over more expensive options. It's sort of the diminishing returns situation... more expensive speakers may be better, but spending 2-3x the price doesn't result in 2-3x improvement
.


Similar comparison pending here. Incoming core bookshelves will still be less than half the price, but closer at $73 vs. $168 for RB-68's, of the older line. Will make it harder to deny any amount I like the klipsch better, if it goes that direction. From my time with the core towers, I feel like the bs versions are going to be equally good, and without the little hump of the towers at whatever frequency that annoyed me, so who knows.
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Went to BestBuy today to buy a 2nd Chromecast ($19 sale) and I noticed they had a little demo station setup with Klipch, Sony and Polk, both tower and bookshelves. Sony had CS3, CS5, Klipsch had R-15M, R-26F, R-28F, forgot the Polk model number, with their corresponding center and subs. They had a center console where you could pick a number of movies/music and switch - quite a nice setup. While this is clearly not the ideal environment to demo, it does give a nice way to compare.

Spent about 20min going back and forth, and its very hard to say that the Klipsch is better. I suspect the amps hooked up to these had different volumes because the loudness difference wasn't matching their efficiencies.
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Went to BestBuy today to buy a 2nd Chromecast ($19 sale) and I noticed they had a little demo station setup with Klipch, Sony and Polk, both tower and bookshelves. Sony had CS3, CS5, Klipsch had R-15M, R-26F, R-28F, forgot the Polk model number, with their corresponding center and subs. They had a center console where you could pick a number of movies/music and switch - quite a nice setup. While this is clearly not the ideal environment to demo, it does give a nice way to compare.

Spent about 20min going back and forth, and its very hard to say that the Klipsch is better. I suspect the amps hooked up to these had different volumes because the loudness difference wasn't matching their efficiencies.
Interesting, but keep in mind the R-15m, R-26F and 28F are a tier below the RP series. I would wager the Cores being better then the lower R series, as I've heard some pretty poor things about them. When I heard the R-26F in BB all I heard was a bassy and bright concoction of sounds like a super deep V shaped EQ, but maybe they weren't set up right.

As for the amps, maybe they had separate amps at different volumes, but it could be that they had a single amp with a switch box hooked up to the console. Klipsch exaggerates a few of their specs, including sensitivity.
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Interesting, but keep in mind the R-15m, R-26F and 28F are a tier below the RP series. I would wager the Cores being better then the lower R series, as I've heard some pretty poor things about them. When I heard the R-26F in BB all I heard was a bassy and bright concoction of sounds like a super deep V shaped EQ, but maybe they weren't set up right.

As for the amps, maybe they had separate amps at different volumes, but it could be that they had a single amp with a switch box hooked up to the console. Klipsch exaggerates a few of their specs, including sensitivity.
Right. They carry the RP-160M but none hooked up for display. Also the R-15M is $500/pair, the RP I thin is $550, I asked the sales guy why anyone would bother with the R-15 and he sorta agreed.

In any case, if multiple people think the RP and the Sony are close enough, that makes me feel much better. Often you hear about some new great product on audio forums and are left wondering if its the real deal.

Where did you first hear about the Sony's. I searched and found a big thread over on audioholics, it seems @zieglj01 was the one who discovered them there?
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Went to BestBuy today to buy a 2nd Chromecast ($19 sale) and I noticed they had a little demo station setup with Klipch, Sony and Polk, both tower and bookshelves. Sony had CS3, CS5, Klipsch had R-15M, R-26F, R-28F, forgot the Polk model number, with their corresponding center and subs. .
I think the Polks were T-15s. My BB had a working setup like that a while ago, it was kind of neat. But the centers weren't hooked up. Last time I checked, the system was up video-wise, but played no music ... we were all just standing around fiddling with knobs trying to get it to work. When it did work, I preferred the Cores over the Klipsch and Polk.

My other BB has the same setup, but with wires just dangling loosely all over the place.

I guess upkeep of their demo stations isn't high on their agenda.
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Right. They carry the RP-160M but none hooked up for display. Also the R-15M is $500/pair, the RP I thin is $550, I asked the sales guy why anyone would bother with the R-15 and he sorta agreed.

In any case, if multiple people think the RP and the Sony are close enough, that makes me feel much better. Often you hear about some new great product on audio forums and are left wondering if its the real deal.

Where did you first hear about the Sony's. I searched and found a big thread over on audioholics, it seems @zieglj01 was the one who discovered them there?
I thought it was another user on that forum who first reviewed them, I forget the name, but I remember the little thumbnail profile picture of "archer". Zeigl has a lot of respect for him too.

I think for HT application, I won't miss the RP's. Again, i'm not listening at "theater" levels of volume, but maybe a bit below it. Again, it was a shrug of the shoulders for me, rather than being like "woah look at all these differences". I.e. The differences are there, the value I placed on them was little.

I will reaffirm, the Klipsch setup is essentially $1000 for a front 3, if you upgrade to the RP-450c (which I think people should). It's really $150 vs. $1000. This may really swing people to just start out with the Cores, since they could be happy with that $150. But the $1000 definitely gets you better, no doubt, it's just about if you need it. In that regard, I think the Klipsch are pretty overpriced. I think the $330 I got my RP-160m's sound more appropriate, especially given the Chane's and (now) Kefs are in that region, as well as others from Emotiva, and JBL etc. I paid $180 for the RP-250c, and I probably can't imagine it should be priced anywhere more than $200. So there seems to be a little price exaggeration for both the center and the bookshelf I had. I will say one thing, the extra cost is probably for the looks- cause they are truly sexy. A real piece of decor in the room. I guess that comes at a cost.
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I think the Polks were T-15s. My BB had a working setup like that a while ago, it was kind of neat. But the centers weren't hooked up. Last time I checked, the system was up video-wise, but played no music ... we were all just standing around fiddling with knobs trying to get it to work. When it did work, I preferred the Cores over the Klipsch and Polk.

My other BB has the same setup, but with wires just dangling loosely all over the place.

I guess upkeep of their demo stations isn't high on their agenda.
i was in BB last night(BF)...they had all the audio disabled i asked someone that worked there if he could check for sony core open box availability and price he pointed me towards the computer section open box cage and basically ran the other direction... not 1 other person in the store ever asked me if i needed help .. and i was there an hour....it wasn't even very busy..not the best BF shopping trip

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i was in BB last night(BF)...they had all the audio disabled i asked someone that worked there if he could check for sony core open box availability and price he pointed me towards the computer section open box cage and basically ran the other direction... not 1 other person in the store ever asked me if i needed help .. and i was there an hour....it wasn't even very busy..not the best BF shopping trip

BB salespeople are weird. I've found that when you need one, they are nowhere to be found. Or they huddle in the corner of the store, while you stand there waiting for them. Not that it necessarily matters that much, as half the time when I've gotten a salesperson they tend to be mostly useless anyway.

Although if you walk into the Magnolia section during holidays or busy hrs, expect to get mobbed. I think I had three salespeople circle me like vultures last time I walked in.
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BB salespeople are weird. I've found that when you need one, they are nowhere to be found. Or they huddle in the corner of the store, while you stand there waiting for them. Not that it necessarily matters that much, as half the time when I've gotten a salesperson they tend to be mostly useless anyway.

Although if you walk into the Magnolia section during holidays or busy hrs, expect to get mobbed. I think I had three salespeople circle me like vultures last time I walked in.
i think maybe they were "mailing it in" by the time i got there..funny that on BF i couldn't find anybody to grab a box of speakers from the back room or even quote a price...i am glad i wasn't in need of speakers

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i was in BB last night(BF)...they had all the audio disabled i asked someone that worked there if he could check for sony core open box availability and price he pointed me towards the computer section open box cage and basically ran the other direction... not 1 other person in the store ever asked me if i needed help .. and i was there an hour....it wasn't even very busy..not the best BF shopping trip
Open box cores are, I believe, just $5 cheaper at $70 .. hardly worth it
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Open box cores are, I believe, just $5 cheaper at $70 .. hardly worth it
to paraphrase Geddy Lee...hey $5 is $5...i probably would have paid full boat but i had to ask.... like i said i am sure glad i didn't need speakers i would have gotten grumpy... they probably did me a favor... i'll save up for q350's or AA's

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to paraphrase Geddy Lee...hey $5 is $5...i probably would have paid full boat but i had to ask.... like i said i am sure glad i didn't need speakers i would have gotten grumpy... they probably did me a favor... i'll save up for q350's or AA's
I'm not even sure it's $5... on ebay via BB I am seeing 70.99 refurb.

I was sort of curious of your opinions on them. I'd say still pick up a set at $75 while you can. If you dislike them, so be it, return... no money lost.

You can of course save up for the Q350s or AAs, but only one way to find out if it was worth it... try the cheapos first. It's possible they make better centers than your current centers as well (think you are using 2020s?)
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post #179 of 282 Old 11-25-2017, 01:53 PM
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I'm not even sure it's $5... on ebay via BB I am seeing 70.99 refurb.

I was sort of curious of your opinions on them. I'd say still pick up a set at $75 while you can. If you dislike them, so be it, return... no money lost.

You can of course save up for the Q350s or AAs, but only one way to find out if it was worth it... try the cheapos first. It's possible they make better centers than your current centers as well (think you are using 2020s?)
yes i am using the 2020's... i kinda like em...i still may pick up the cores.. i have a buddy that just bought the cores.. maybe we could swap for a couple of weeks..

YAMAHA TSR 5790.. front l/r emotiva b1's and /or kef q100's ..BIC v1220.....Emotiva basx10.... ascend cbm 170 center.. polk t15 rears..samsung 55" j620d
bedroom .. YAMAHA r-xv 383... front l/r.. wharfedale 10.1s... ascend cbm 170 center ... Emotiva basx8... samsung ku6300 50 in
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post #180 of 282 Old 11-25-2017, 02:56 PM
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I thought it was another user on that forum who first reviewed them, I forget the name, but I remember the little thumbnail profile picture of "archer". Zeigl has a lot of respect for him too.

I think for HT application, I won't miss the RP's. Again, i'm not listening at "theater" levels of volume, but maybe a bit below it. Again, it was a shrug of the shoulders for me, rather than being like "woah look at all these differences". I.e. The differences are there, the value I placed on them was little.

I will reaffirm, the Klipsch setup is essentially $1000 for a front 3, if you upgrade to the RP-450c (which I think people should). It's really $150 vs. $1000. This may really swing people to just start out with the Cores, since they could be happy with that $150. But the $1000 definitely gets you better, no doubt, it's just about if you need it. In that regard, I think the Klipsch are pretty overpriced. I think the $330 I got my RP-160m's sound more appropriate, especially given the Chane's and (now) Kefs are in that region, as well as others from Emotiva, and JBL etc. I paid $180 for the RP-250c, and I probably can't imagine it should be priced anywhere more than $200. So there seems to be a little price exaggeration for both the center and the bookshelf I had. I will say one thing, the extra cost is probably for the looks- cause they are truly sexy. A real piece of decor in the room. I guess that comes at a cost.
$75 (or $150 at full price) vs $1000 is a huge difference, and at the $1k mark there's a huge range of choice. I used to think that Klipsch were a great choice given their name recognition, and I was probably swayed by all the talk of high efficiency and the typical Klipsch 'bright' sound. As for looks, I'm willing to bet most people don't take the grills off, which makes them all look equal.
Looks don't even factor into the equation for me, and to prove it this is what I'm using right now -



Hard to get uglier
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