Originally Posted by Vikram Iyengar
The speakers sound hissy in general and suppress the midrange. It's not a constant shhh component that is added to the music. The music itself sounds hissy on the s15.
What are snare drums and high hats? Something like cymbals? When I play better studio recordings, it does improve but still a little hissy. As Pase22 said, s15 may just not suit me. The Signature set continues to be great for HT (but I'm also fine using TV speakers for HT).
But you're using live recordings to judge your speakers... and using source material that isn't the best (not the streaming service, the actual recording). Also, what settings do you currently have set with the streaming software you use? If you're hearing a constant hiss, then that could be your app's settings (too much treble or something).
I have never seen anyone describe the S15s as being hissy (not even the pretty fair review here: https://www.avsforum.com/forum/89-sp...-speakers.html
The snare is the main drum in a drum kit. There's a bunch of little "wires" on the bottom side of the drum that create a "rattling" sound, which you tend to hear, say, during a drum roll. The high hat is like a cymbal - it's pretty much the other main component in a drum kit. There's a pedal that open/closes it, and it makes a TSSS sound, which can be long or short-sounding depending on whether the high hat is open or closed.
It's difficult to pinpoint the issue because: 1. It could be your space 2. You're perhaps not using the best source material 3. Your streaming app EQ settings might be to blame (possibly even the EQ settings on your AVR?) 4. You're possibly conflating naturally-occurring sounds from the instruments with sibilance/hissing 5. You're comparing the S15s with $9 headphones/factory radio/sound inside your car, and are just used to speakers/components that lack the clarity that the S15s are producing by comparison.
Ultimately, if you're not happy with the S15s, get rid of them. Truly. Sell them, and replace them with something else - the KEF Q150s might be more to your liking or even the Wharfedale Diamond 10.2s or Elac Debut 6.2s or Polk LSiM 703s. It's honestly a bit of an exercise in futility to try to shoehorn the S15s into something you're happy with when you have all of these concerns.