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post #271 of 324 Old 10-31-2019, 09:38 PM
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Originally Posted by echopraxia View Post
Also on the topic of evaluating differences between wide vs narrower dispersion, I think that will require separate blind listening tests on-axis and off-axis.
If you are listening in a room, the differences will be apparent on-axis as differences in "spaciousness" of the sound as one sound field will have more wall reflections than the other. You definitely want to do this blind so you don't go in with expectations.

I recommend setting them up in the fashion I did, or similar. You can then use the AVR > Speaker Setup > Levels to account for any sensitivity differences.

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post #272 of 324 Old 10-31-2019, 09:54 PM
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If you are listening in a room, the differences will be apparent on-axis as differences in "spaciousness" of the sound as one sound field will have more wall reflections than the other. You definitely want to do this blind so you don't go in with expectations.

I recommend setting them up in the fashion I did, or similar. You can then use the AVR > Speaker Setup > Levels to account for any sensitivity differences.
Speaker levels works fine, but any tips setting up two speakers playing mono signals? My AVR won’t let me select only a center channel without first enabling left and right.

And I understand that off axis reflections affect the sound at the primary listening position, but I was speaking more about the uniformity of the sound throughout the room in different listening positions. Anyway, I most likely won’t test it explicitly, not because I want to, but because it’s looking like a lot of work to do actual blind tests on two speakers let alone adding this variation in.

Ascend Sierra Towers (RAAL) + Ascend Horizon (RAAL) + 2x Rythmik F18 | Ascend Sierra 2EX + JL Audio E112
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post #273 of 324 Old 10-31-2019, 10:01 PM
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I connected one speaker to my front left, and one to surround left. I used foobar2000 on my laptop connected with HDMI as the source. I used the DSP setting to send the front audio to the rears. I set that to a hotkey that I could toggle on/off while playing music. I can give more details if you can't figure it out. It allowed me to do A/B testing with the gear I already had and without having to stop the music and change anything in the setup.

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post #274 of 324 Old 11-01-2019, 03:09 AM
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Follow-up note: I bought KEF R3’s, so I’ll be able to provide subjective comparison to the Ascend Sierra 2EX for those who are interested. I don’t want to post too soon until I’ve had enough time with them, but so far I’ll say that they’re both fantastic speakers, and each appear to be a bit better than the other in different ways.
This is also my impression after listening (and owning) some of the contenders mentioned here.

And it shouldn't be a surprise.

Speakers designed to meet similar goals, in this case the CEA 2034 'Harman' standard, should sound more alike than different if they get close to said standard.

That's the entire point of having a standard.

If they don't, either the standard isn't stringent enough, or they don't meet it.

If you don't like the sound of speakers that do hew closely to CEA 2034 that's fine. You can argue with the science, or simple choose to ignore it.

B&W deliberately design their speakers to ignore CEA2034 and many love them.

That's their choice.

Since I do believe the science, a more interesting question for me is that of value. If well-designed speakers sound very similar, what is the point of paying more for an equally well-designed speaker?

Maybe you'll get extra bass extension. But you you can get that better from good subs. Maybe you'll get lower distortion. But that's only audible at high volumes.

I've owned very expensive speakers in the past. But just like I questioned my ownership of very expensive amps after listening tests, I now wonder if it is worth it.

The point of diminishing returns seems lower than ever.

Something like the Kii or Dutch and Dutch may offer genuine improvement, but with DSP and room EQ even the humble LS50/R3/M106/2EX can get awfully close.
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post #275 of 324 Old 11-02-2019, 02:34 AM
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Posted my results here (KEF R3 vs Ascend Sierra 2-EX blind listening comparison): https://www.avsforum.com/forum/89-sp...l#post58765180

Anyone interested in the KEF R3 and its competitors, or the Ascend Sierra 2-EX and its competitors, should find this data valuable, I hope.

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post #276 of 324 Old 11-03-2019, 02:54 AM
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Originally Posted by echopraxia View Post
Posted my results here (KEF R3 vs Ascend Sierra 2-EX blind listening comparison):
Anyone interested in the KEF R3 and its competitors, or the Ascend Sierra 2-EX and its competitors, should find this data valuable, I hope.

Interesting indeed ... but remind me on the situation when i bought Dyns special 40. Yes, better resolution, better separation, better soundstage, faster bass but now i am selling them and listening to KEF R3 even they are half of the price of the Dyns. I enjoyed them more than a year but at the end they are too smooth and overwhelming with information in the top end and especially when you listen them on moderate levels that is just too much - there are very very fine and impressive sounds coming from these speakers but somehow i couldn't get the music as whole. If you turn the volume up things changes to some degree, but in my case i listen 95% on pretty low levels. And in general like i said, they are just too smooth - i found i was missing the aggression in many cases. Its not harshness what i am talking ... its the attack of the notes.
The problem in such choices is that actually when i bought them i was impressed exactly from those smoothness and silky sound. Unfortunately its unrealistic.


The KEF on the other hand deliver music as whole without trying to get every fine detail and this on any volume level.
Found very interesting to read this impression "The violins sound sharper, stronger, harsher. On the other speaker they were smoother but I don't think they're supposed to sound like that." here ... i auditioned some speakers in the 2-5K € Range and KEF represent string and brass instruments best. You really have this feeling of something scratching on a string or get realistic volume of a trumpet sound. On the Special 40 they sounded unrealistic smooth and thin.
Some here price the good bass response of the KEFs. Hmm ... not so sure about this. Yes, there is a good extension on the bottom end, but is not especially fast and detailed. This mean - actually in normal listening you wouldn't miss something there. Bass is enough to deliver the expiriance of the music as whole. But if you know what to look for in drums you will miss some of that information in R3s.



About harshness or so ... Sometimes this has to do something with the amp. In my case is a Hegel amp and Hegel and KEF have partnership, and hegel amps are voiced with KEF speakers. Hegel is pretty neutral i think.
Next - metaldome tweeters are not like softdome. They sound just different. And ribbons also ...
And i also use DSP and must say that in terms harshness there is in my opinion misinterpretation of the frequency response curves here in this tread. Those curves dont tell you much about that. I can tune the curve with the DSP how i like it ... get it perfectly flat if i want. Still, the KEFs sound more aggressive then the Dyns even the Dyns have more presentation and detail on the top end. But like i said - for me this is a good thing and i wouldn't call it harshness. Its more about the dynamic of the notes in the top end.

Ok, at the end i am not saying R3 are perfect ... and actually i am still in the searching of something better in terms of resolution (a little bit more at least), and better bass in terms of speed. Next is to audition the elac adantes. From the reviews it seems they are a step in this direction although bass is again not so well treated ... but is interesting if is better than the R3. If they got the resolution of the Dyns without the overwhelming effect and the bass is at least a little bit better could be my next speaker.
It is very interesting how different the crossovers of the R3 and adante are. 400Hz, 2.9kHz on kef vs 200Hz / 2,000 Hz on elac. So on elac you almost cant locate the bass as a separate driver and fast the whole vocal spectrum is on one driver. Theoretically a good thing. The KEFs have actually some kind of problem with fmale vocals. Cant say what exactly is it, but they just don't sound so realistic, that trick you to imagine the singer in front of you. Or at least my brain want
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post #277 of 324 Old 11-03-2019, 09:06 AM
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Ok, at the end i am not saying R3 are perfect ... and actually i am still in the searching of something better in terms of resolution (a little bit more at least), and better bass in terms of speed. Next is to audition the elac adantes. From the reviews it seems they are a step in this direction although bass is again not so well treated ... but is interesting if is better than the R3. If they got the resolution of the Dyns without the overwhelming effect and the bass is at least a little bit better could be my next speaker.
He wasn't saying the R3 were bad by any means so don't let that stop you from enjoying them. I just wanted to comment about looking for speakers with better "speed" in the bass, this is completely room related and in order to have the best bass you can get you'll need to measure around your listening position and correct any peaks you have. I'm not sure if you're using subs but if not adding a couple subs and properly integrating them with your mains is going to have the biggest impact on your sound quality and will give you the "fast" bass you seek.
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post #278 of 324 Old 11-03-2019, 09:15 AM
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He wasn't saying the R3 were bad by any means so don't let that stop you from enjoying them. I just wanted to comment about looking for speakers with better "speed" in the bass, this is completely room related and in order to have the best bass you can get you'll need to measure around your listening position and correct any peaks you have. I'm not sure if you're using subs but if not adding a couple subs and properly integrating them with your mains is going to have the biggest impact on your sound quality and will give you the "fast" bass you seek.
Of course the room is a huge factor. But there are two separate systems here, and bass quality is indeed different on different speakers. The impression of fast, tight, accurate bass on some speakers and slow, bloaty bass on others is real.
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post #279 of 324 Old 11-03-2019, 09:23 AM
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Of course the room is a huge factor. But there are two separate systems here, and bass quality is indeed different on different speakers. The impression of fast, tight, accurate bass on some speakers and slow, bloaty bass on others is real.
Yes but that is entirely based on how they interact with the room, generally bass heavy speakers like the R3 or towers are going to sound boomy and tubby if not corrected. I still have a measurement of when I had the LSIM 703 in my room and there is a huge spike at 58Hz that is about 10 db more than my typical smaller bookshelves with 5" drivers and without EQ they did sound "slow" and tubby but take that peak out and they were fast and tight again. I can make my system slow and tubby or fast and tight by doing nothing more than turning on and off the EQ to my subs.
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post #280 of 324 Old 11-03-2019, 10:11 AM
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Yes but that is entirely based on how they interact with the room, generally bass heavy speakers like the R3 or towers are going to sound boomy and tubby if not corrected. I still have a measurement of when I had the LSIM 703 in my room and there is a huge spike at 58Hz that is about 10 db more than my typical smaller bookshelves with 5" drivers and without EQ they did sound "slow" and tubby but take that peak out and they were fast and tight again. I can make my system slow and tubby or fast and tight by doing nothing more than turning on and off the EQ to my subs.
It's more than just the room

Not all bass from speakers sounds the same. And you just provided ample evidence - many ported speakers with a hump in their output sound a bit flabby. That hump would be there in an anechoic chamber.
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post #281 of 324 Old 11-03-2019, 10:25 AM
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It's more than just the room

Not all bass from speakers sounds the same. And you just provided ample evidence - many ported speakers with a hump in their output sound a bit flabby. That hump would be there in an anechoic chamber.
CHeck the LSIM 703 measurements on Soundstage, they are rolling off quite a bit by 60Hz but they still have a lot more output than my LS50's at that range. It's really no different than the myth that sealed subwoofers are "faster" than ported, it's all about output. I just prefer to have that output and EQ the peaks to gain free efficiency from the system. I know this isn't really the thread for this but there are free Harman whitepapers on this subject from Floyd Toole that talks about this. https://www.harman.com/innovation-category/whitepapers

Part 3: Getting the bass right has a lot of good info. He talks about Fast and Slow woofers and that the frequency response is responsible for all of these "bass quality" type descriptors we like to use for different speakers and subwoofers.
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post #282 of 324 Old 11-03-2019, 10:33 AM
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I'm not talking "fast" or "slow" woofers. There is no such actual property. You move a transducer faster and you create a higher frequency wave. There are benefits to stiff, light cones, but it has nothing to do with speed of movement.

I'm talking about our perception of the sound - and an uneven response can sound flabby and slow to our ears.

I had my Mackie MR624s up on my Buchardt S400 stands last night. They are different sounding in the bass region and it is the different output shape of the ported speaker vs passive radiator causing that difference. Nearfield measurements confirmed that.

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post #283 of 324 Old 11-03-2019, 10:44 AM
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I'm talking about our perception of the sound - and an uneven response can sound flabby and slow to our ears.

I had my Mackie MR624s up on my Buchardt S400 stands last night. They are different sounding in the bass region and it is the different output shape of the ported speaker vs passive radiator causing that difference. Nearfield measurements confirmed that.
Ok we're basically in agreement then, that's exactly what Toole says, that the differences are due to the frequency response. I thought you were saying something else, my bad.
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post #284 of 324 Old 11-04-2019, 12:19 AM
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Room is always a factor, sure. But in my case since i have the miniDSP SHD Studio as a streamer not really a problem anymore (is especially good in correcting bass problems).
And at the end i compare the Dyns with the KEFs in the same room. The Dyns draw your attention with certain bass notes. They just make you notice them, and say "wow, that one was nice". The KEFs, like i said - you dont miss bass, but there is also nothing special there.
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post #285 of 324 Old 11-04-2019, 01:04 AM
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CHeck the LSIM 703 measurements on Soundstage, they are rolling off quite a bit by 60Hz but they still have a lot more output than my LS50's at that range. It's really no different than the myth that sealed subwoofers are "faster" than ported, it's all about output. I just prefer to have that output and EQ the peaks to gain free efficiency from the system. I know this isn't really the thread for this but there are free Harman whitepapers on this subject from Floyd Toole that talks about this. https://www.harman.com/innovation-category/whitepapers

Part 3: Getting the bass right has a lot of good info. He talks about Fast and Slow woofers and that the frequency response is responsible for all of these "bass quality" type descriptors we like to use for different speakers and subwoofers.
In general I agree that people have misconstrued the basic frequency response of sealed vs ported for magically quick or slow woofers.

There are, however, theoretical, measurable and potentially audible differences between ported and sealed, especially when interacting with a sub.

Generally speaking, of course, ported speakers will go lower (F3-wise) than sealed ones, then drop off at twice the rate. They can also show some nasty noises below the port frequency.

If the port is tuned low enough and you are crossing to a sub this isn't a problem.

But if the port is tuned high, and you are crossing to a sub, it can be.

This is the issue with the LS50. It has a natural roll-off below 200Hz, then a boost from the port, then it plummets at 24db/Octave from just above 80Hz down.

If you try to cross it to a sub at 80Hz, you get a hole in the response.

If you raise the crossover point, you can localise the sub.

You can EQ to be flat (like the LS50W) but if you do that and play loud, the port (excuse the language) farts).

This is why the R3 is a better speaker, even when crossed to a sub, is a better speaker.

But, depending on your processor, even the R3 is better crossed to a sub with the ports plugged.

Most processors apply a simple 12db crossover, assuming the speaker has a theoretical (sealed) matching 12dB roll-off to give a 24dB Linkwitz-Riley 4th order crossover to match the 24dB sub low pass.

Clever ones like Anthem through their ARC EQ actually measure the roll-off and adjust the crossover slope to match.

But they are the only ones (to my knowledge that do).

If you have enough amp power and excursion and DSP, you can EQ a sealed box to match the extension of ported one and still have the roll-off needed.

It's all trade-offs.
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post #286 of 324 Old 11-09-2019, 09:52 AM
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Aria looks like it has way too much bass energy from 300hz down, and I haven't seen a tweeter break up at 20KHz for a while now. I'd probably lean towards the Special 40, although I've seen them go for less than 2k used, more like 1700-1800. See if you can negotiate a bit further.
Where did get the Aria 926 curves? I have found a number of pairs of those speakers for under $2000, especially ones that have the seemingly out of favor walnut veneer finish. If the bass rise is because of the speaker's resonance frequency, then that could be an issue for me. That's why I'm avoiding the Martin Logan 60XT after having read Brent Butterworth's 2015 review. I would be looking for the impedance and phase curves as well as FR.

I can't hear above 14kHz, and would welcome a tweeter that breaks up at 20 kHz. There's little or no content in most music in that range that I would likely find objectionable even if somebody presented to me a tweeter that has lousy looking curves above 10 kHz. I could look at their data sheets for hours they are available in Madisound.
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post #287 of 324 Old 11-09-2019, 11:18 AM
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Revel M126Be. I think they might be close to the 3k cutoff with a good deal from a dealer.


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post #288 of 324 Old 11-09-2019, 11:55 AM
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And in general like i said, they are just too smooth - i found i was missing the aggression in many cases. Its not harshness what i am talking ... its the attack of the notes.
The problem in such choices is that actually when i bought them i was impressed exactly from those smoothness and silky sound. Unfortunately its unrealistic.

The KEF on the other hand deliver music as whole without trying to get every fine detail and this on any volume level.
Found very interesting to read this impression "The violins sound sharper, stronger, harsher. On the other speaker they were smoother but I don't think they're supposed to sound like that." here ... i auditioned some speakers in the 2-5K € Range and KEF represent string and brass instruments best. You really have this feeling of something scratching on a string or get realistic volume of a trumpet sound. On the Special 40 they sounded unrealistic smooth and thin.
Some here price the good bass response of the KEFs. Hmm ... not so sure about this. Yes, there is a good extension on the bottom end, but is not especially fast and detailed. This mean - actually in normal listening you wouldn't miss something there. Bass is enough to deliver the expiriance of the music as whole. But if you know what to look for in drums you will miss some of that information in R3s.
Super review. Would you say that the "smooth" character of the Special Forty, where you feel can't hear all of the texture in stringed instruments, would extend to most all Dynaudio speakers that sell for under $5000? If so, I should probably avoid the Excite X38's I had found second hand, even though they are available at a good price, with a beautiful finish. I would likely end up selling them within two months.

The most detail I've ever heard in stringed instruments, was using Focal Clear headphones. I know that I probably have to go to their Electra or Sopra lines to hear anything like that, but would probably look at used Arias (only if well priced since they've been out for a while).

I've heard KEF R3's at Best Buy. Those had sounded good with hard rock music, but I would still go with floorstanding speakers having bigger drivers to properly reproduce bass guitars and drums most of the time. Martin Logan's 35XTi is looking like a bargain in comparison but that one might have flaws of its own.

I use a warm sounding Quad power amplifier, so I don't want to use excessively warm speakers with it. Could change amps to suit, I suppose.
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post #289 of 324 Old 11-09-2019, 12:34 PM
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Interesting indeed ... but remind me on the situation when i bought Dyns special 40. Yes, better resolution, better separation, better soundstage, faster bass but now i am selling them and listening to KEF R3 even they are half of the price of the Dyns. I enjoyed them more than a year but at the end they are too smooth and overwhelming with information in the top end and especially when you listen them on moderate levels that is just too much - there are very very fine and impressive sounds coming from these speakers but somehow i couldn't get the music as whole. If you turn the volume up things changes to some degree, but in my case i listen 95% on pretty low levels. And in general like i said, they are just too smooth - i found i was missing the aggression in many cases. Its not harshness what i am talking ... its the attack of the notes.
The problem in such choices is that actually when i bought them i was impressed exactly from those smoothness and silky sound. Unfortunately its unrealistic.


The KEF on the other hand deliver music as whole without trying to get every fine detail and this on any volume level.
Found very interesting to read this impression "The violins sound sharper, stronger, harsher. On the other speaker they were smoother but I don't think they're supposed to sound like that." here ... i auditioned some speakers in the 2-5K € Range and KEF represent string and brass instruments best. You really have this feeling of something scratching on a string or get realistic volume of a trumpet sound. On the Special 40 they sounded unrealistic smooth and thin.
Some here price the good bass response of the KEFs. Hmm ... not so sure about this. Yes, there is a good extension on the bottom end, but is not especially fast and detailed. This mean - actually in normal listening you wouldn't miss something there. Bass is enough to deliver the expiriance of the music as whole. But if you know what to look for in drums you will miss some of that information in R3s.



About harshness or so ... Sometimes this has to do something with the amp. In my case is a Hegel amp and Hegel and KEF have partnership, and hegel amps are voiced with KEF speakers. Hegel is pretty neutral i think.
Next - metaldome tweeters are not like softdome. They sound just different. And ribbons also ...
And i also use DSP and must say that in terms harshness there is in my opinion misinterpretation of the frequency response curves here in this tread. Those curves dont tell you much about that. I can tune the curve with the DSP how i like it ... get it perfectly flat if i want. Still, the KEFs sound more aggressive then the Dyns even the Dyns have more presentation and detail on the top end. But like i said - for me this is a good thing and i wouldn't call it harshness. Its more about the dynamic of the notes in the top end.

Ok, at the end i am not saying R3 are perfect ... and actually i am still in the searching of something better in terms of resolution (a little bit more at least), and better bass in terms of speed. Next is to audition the elac adantes. From the reviews it seems they are a step in this direction although bass is again not so well treated ... but is interesting if is better than the R3. If they got the resolution of the Dyns without the overwhelming effect and the bass is at least a little bit better could be my next speaker.
It is very interesting how different the crossovers of the R3 and adante are. 400Hz, 2.9kHz on kef vs 200Hz / 2,000 Hz on elac. So on elac you almost cant locate the bass as a separate driver and fast the whole vocal spectrum is on one driver. Theoretically a good thing. The KEFs have actually some kind of problem with fmale vocals. Cant say what exactly is it, but they just don't sound so realistic, that trick you to imagine the singer in front of you. Or at least my brain want
Enjoyed reading this post.

So far, what else do you have in-house to compare the Adante's to?

It sounds like you own the Special 40s but auditioned the Kefs?

Interested in hearing about your experience with the Adante's.

-Rob

<div class="post-sig post-sig-limit shazam usersig-click"><div class="reparse-sig-lineheight"><span>Only time will tell what the future holds...so until then JAM LIKE THERES NO TOMORROW!</span><br><span>-Rob</span><br><br><a href="https://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=684744">My Natalie P project</a></div></div>

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post #290 of 324 Old 11-15-2019, 01:52 AM
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Enjoyed reading this post.
So far, what else do you have in-house to compare the Adante's to?
It sounds like you own the Special 40s but auditioned the Kefs?
Interested in hearing about your experience with the Adante's.
-Rob

I owned Special 40s and R3 and sold the Special 40s ... tried to explain why, even when Special 40s actually the better speaker is. In short - because of few specifics that after all doesn't suit my taste. On the other hand R3 are not the end of the game for me. Still want more resolution but with overall tonality of the R3s . Therefore i wanted to check the Adante's and the audition was very interesting indeed. Now i must wait for a wile to take them at home and make the real comparison with the R3s. But even i heard the Adante's in different room can say they are far more refined and the more resolving then the R3s. Seemed to be a touch more laid back in the mids (missed some dynamic and aggression there) but that i want to compare in the same room. For now it looks like the Adante's will be my next speakers. Only time will say if they stay for more than an a year in my system.
In any speaker of this price range is something interesting (and no one is perfect!). But my experience so far is, that only after few months or even a year i am over this initial excitement. And perhaps exactly because no one is perfect its somewhere part of this hobby to change equipment and always test and enjoy something different.
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post #291 of 324 Old 11-15-2019, 02:01 AM
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Would you say that the "smooth" character of the Special Forty, where you feel can't hear all of the texture in stringed instruments, would extend to most all Dynaudio speakers that sell for under $5000?
Cant say from my experience but asked Dynaudio lovers the same question and they said yes. But there is also a other point to mention. I heard the S40 with the hegel amp. For few days a auditioned them with there new owner with NAIT XS ? (dont know the version) and with that amp they sounded a little bit more rough and the strings was then more realistic. Still not to the level of the KEFs but just to say, that the amp is also a pretty important part regarding this topic.
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post #292 of 324 Old 11-15-2019, 06:11 AM
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In any speaker of this price range is something interesting (and no one is perfect!). But my experience so far is, that only after few months or even a year i am over this initial excitement. And perhaps exactly because no one is perfect its somewhere part of this hobby to change equipment and always test and enjoy something different.
This is the definition of "UPGRADEITIS"
After 30 years of suffering with the afliction (very common here at AVS)
I found the cure with a guy who's namesake is a vaccine:

Jim Salk

Life is short. Cut to the chase. Have Jim custom build you speakers using world class components.
Almost every other item in our HT has been through multiple upgrade cycles. Yet our Salk MTMs still anchor the front soundfield.

Jim's speakers are works of art that "WORK"

My $.02
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post #293 of 324 Old 11-16-2019, 06:56 PM
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No amp (no matter how good) can make a regular LS50 sound the same as the wireless one. The wireless LS50 is not just an LS50 with a different amp; they’re effectively a whole new speaker, with fundamentally different crossover design (integrated bi amp and digital crossover) with additional DSP improvements that do things that cannot feasibly/affordably be done in pure analog circuits.

Also, people often vastly overestimate the sound quality impact of extremely expensive amplifiers for passive speakers, when in fact beyond a certain point (say, $500 for an AVR or amplifier) you get *extremely* diminishing returns — so much so that I doubt more than a fraction of a percent of the population could tell any difference in a double blind test.
We actually agree on a lot more than we give ourselves credit for lol. I recently brought home a pair of the wireless LS50 to compare with my passives and I was surprised at how similar they sounded with the PEQ filters I've been using. I posted these in the LS50 thread but figured it was relevant here as well:



These are with neutral settings so not much bass boost but you can see the bass is slightly boosted from 55-80Hz, the slightly lower response up to 300 is because they were in the near wall mode. The other difference is in the highs, the wireless corrects the 2k and 5k region, very similar to what I've done with my own PEQ if you compare the measurements. So like another poster said, the LS50 with subs would be tough to beat for the price, especially if you can measure and EQ the highs to smooth them out, otherwise the wireless version already takes care of that for you.
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post #294 of 324 Old 11-16-2019, 10:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Exocer View Post
Enjoyed reading this post.
So far, what else do you have in-house to compare the Adante's to?
It sounds like you own the Special 40s but auditioned the Kefs?
Interested in hearing about your experience with the Adante's.
-Rob

I owned Special 40s and R3 and sold the Special 40s [IMG class=inlineimg]/forum/images/smilies/rolleyes.gif[/IMG] ... tried to explain why, even when Special 40s actually the better speaker is. In short - because of few specifics that after all doesn't suit my taste. On the other hand R3 are not the end of the game for me. Still want more resolution but with overall tonality of the R3s . Therefore i wanted to check the Adante's and the audition was very interesting indeed. Now i must wait for a wile to take them at home and make the real comparison with the R3s. But even i heard the Adante's in different room can say they are far more refined and the more resolving then the R3s. Seemed to be a touch more laid back in the mids (missed some dynamic and aggression there) but that i want to compare in the same room. For now it looks like the Adante's will be my next speakers. Only time will say if they stay for more than an a year in my system.
In any speaker of this price range is something interesting (and no one is perfect!). But my experience so far is, that only after few months or even a year i am over this initial excitement. And perhaps exactly because no one is perfect its somewhere part of this hobby to change equipment and always test and enjoy something different.
All Dynaudio speakers have a smooth top-end with good detail. People say all amps sound the same, but I prefer the Dynaudio speakers with Naim amps. I’ve only used Integrateds and currently have a Uniti Star with some Contour 20s. This setup isn’t as lively as my previous (Dynaudio Focus 260s) which I felt gave more of the “live presentation” feeling. This being a slightly more forward upper-mid/lower treble sound. However with the Contours I feel as if I’m hearing more of the way a recording was recorded, live or studio. Also where the 260s gave me a wall of music, I feel the 20s can give me the same wall of music or I can decide to listen in an analytical fashion, and instruments can be very easily delineated, I can just enjoy the music or I can revel in its its good or bad qualities. With Naim amps I have felt they can control the bass better then I’ve heard with Primare, Bel Canto, Rogue, Musical Fidelity, NAD, Marantz, Integra. My favorite amps have been Naim, Octave and Simaudio. With Naim the XS has always been a warm sound with a mid-bass bump sound, where I find the SN/Uniti products a bit more neutral in presentation and have great top-end dynamics. I find that Dynaudio tends to reveal what’s up the chain driving them. For instance the Focus 160s were a bit bright to me and the XS was a good match, however when I got the 260s I felt the added woofer warmed up the sound and the XS was moved and I went to the Uniti products. With the contours I’m thinking SuperNait 3 and an ND5XS2 is where I want to rest.

Blah blah blah..... with that all said I don’t believe any speaker is perfect and I don’t expect anyone to absolutely love what I love. I like that you’re looking into many options, and finding your own perfect speaker. Also consider Focal I like what they do, a little more top-end dynamics but not blatantly in your face either. I wasn’t a fan of Revel or Vienna Acoustics, I did like TAD/Pioneer, KEF Reference 3, Raidho/Scansonic, Dali.
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post #295 of 324 Old 11-17-2019, 08:41 AM
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Originally Posted by dan3952 View Post
Super review. Would you say that the "smooth" character of the Special Forty, where you feel can't hear all of the texture in stringed instruments, would extend to most all Dynaudio speakers that sell for under $5000? If so, I should probably avoid the Excite X38's I had found second hand, even though they are available at a good price, with a beautiful finish. I would likely end up selling them within two months.

The most detail I've ever heard in stringed instruments, was using Focal Clear headphones. I know that I probably have to go to their Electra or Sopra lines to hear anything like that, but would probably look at used Arias (only if well priced since they've been out for a while).

I've heard KEF R3's at Best Buy. Those had sounded good with hard rock music, but I would still go with floorstanding speakers having bigger drivers to properly reproduce bass guitars and drums most of the time. Martin Logan's 35XTi is looking like a bargain in comparison but that one might have flaws of its own.

I use a warm sounding Quad power amplifier, so I don't want to use excessively warm speakers with it. Could change amps to suit, I suppose.
stringed instruments sound very detailed on amt tweeters , i think by extension of this knowledge that would also apply (more so) to raal ribbons , if i was you i might look to the ascend sierra's or salk bmr's....

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
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post #296 of 324 Old 11-18-2019, 01:23 PM
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stringed instruments sound very detailed on amt tweeters , i think by extension of this knowledge that would also apply (more so) to raal ribbons , if i was you i might look to the ascend sierra's or salk bmr's....
Sadly the only option with a ribbon here is audio vector in the price range over 4k$ ... at the moment not in my budget.

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No amp (no matter how good) can make a regular LS50 sound the same as the wireless one. The wireless LS50 is not just an LS50 with a different amp; they’re effectively a whole new speaker, with fundamentally different crossover design (integrated bi amp and digital crossover) with additional DSP improvements that do things that cannot feasibly/affordably be done in pure analog circuits.
Also, people often vastly overestimate the sound quality impact of extremely expensive amplifiers for passive speakers, when in fact beyond a certain point (say, $500 for an AVR or amplifier) you get *extremely* diminishing returns — so much so that I doubt more than a fraction of a percent of the population could tell any difference in a double blind test.
I almost guarantee you will not notice a sound quality difference between a good $500 AVR and a $5000 audiophile amplifier, in a blind test played through the same passive speakers (of course, you will perceive a difference via placebo if you are looking for there to be a difference), because the reality is both perform far beyond the level of human perception in most cases. The only exception is perhaps when massive power output and SPL is concerned.
Don’t underestimate the power of placebo as well, so don’t post about what your ears tell you unless you’ve confirmed it’s just your ears via double blind testing.
Even if you want to argue for the value of high end electronics, it’s universally accepted that speakers get you vastly more value per dollar than any other upgrades (electronics, etc.) So always, always, always spend your upgrade on the best speakers (and subwoofer) you can possibly afford. Only then after you’ve bought the best speakers and sub you can get should you consider electronics upgrades.
have to disagree pretty much everything ...
I heard in the last week hegel H160 (mine), naim nait XS3 and ATC ... all >2K amps and they sound different. Not the overall tonality. The difference in this price range is micro dynamic, fullness, richness, space ... and to take again the special 40, they sound indeed very different with naim and with my hegel. Or go back to my LS50s on the arcam compared to the hegel. Much fuller sound and more dynamic with the hegel. So, amp matters


And about the passive LS50s with a good amp ... they also sound better as the active ones. But the point is, to get there you pay >2x the price of the speaker for the amp. If i count the dac then its more than 3x. So the active ones are defiantly the better economical and versatile solution. But with that amp/dac I got more fine details than with the active ones ...
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post #297 of 324 Old 11-18-2019, 01:37 PM
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I'm not talking "fast" or "slow" woofers. There is no such actual property. You move a transducer faster and you create a higher frequency wave. There are benefits to stiff, light cones, but it has nothing to do with speed of movement.

I'm talking about our perception of the sound - and an uneven response can sound flabby and slow to our ears.

I had my Mackie MR624s up on my Buchardt S400 stands last night. They are different sounding in the bass region and it is the different output shape of the ported speaker vs passive radiator causing that difference. Nearfield measurements confirmed that.

+1 put me down for this too. I'm amazed at how many others on here *insist* that their is no sound-quality difference between different subwoofer's playing the same tone in the same position within the same room. I saw a improvement moving to a sealed servo sub over a ported non-servo just within the last few months.


Same room. Same AVR/room correction. Same cross-over point into the same speakers. Same location (was a "good" position in terms of a little room gain/boundary without deep-in-a-corner boomy, whether it was an old sub or a new one). Listen to the same song(s) = listening to the same tones... the sealed servo stops "ringing" quicker, especially when configured for "high damping".
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post #298 of 324 Old 11-18-2019, 03:36 PM
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+1 put me down for this too. I'm amazed at how many others on here *insist* that their is no sound-quality difference between different subwoofer's playing the same tone in the same position within the same room. I saw a improvement moving to a sealed servo sub over a ported non-servo just within the last few months.


Same room. Same AVR/room correction. Same cross-over point into the same speakers. Same location (was a "good" position in terms of a little room gain/boundary without deep-in-a-corner boomy, whether it was an old sub or a new one). Listen to the same song(s) = listening to the same tones... the sealed servo stops "ringing" quicker, especially when configured for "high damping".
No one to my knowledge said different subwoofers won't sound different. What Dr. Toole and others have said is that the frequency response is all that matters in regards to the bass, if you hear "ringing' it will show as a peak in your in-room response. If you EQ 2 subs to measure identically at your listening position, they will sound the same. Also, placing a sub in a corner is one of the best locations because after you EQ out the peak that results, you've gained free efficiency in that range.
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post #299 of 324 Old 11-18-2019, 04:11 PM
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No one to my knowledge said different subwoofers won't sound different. What Dr. Toole and others have said is that the frequency response is all that matters in regards to the bass, if you hear "ringing' it will show as a peak in your in-room response. If you EQ 2 subs to measure identically at your listening position, they will sound the same. Also, placing a sub in a corner is one of the best locations because after you EQ out the peak that results, you've gained free efficiency in that range.
He also has stated he prefers sealed sub if I'm not mistaken.
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post #300 of 324 Old 11-18-2019, 04:39 PM
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The price points on the Kef Q150, Elac Debut 2.0 B6.2, and Chane 1.5 are all similar ~$300-350. My intended placement is fairly close a wall so I'm favoring the front ported Elacs, but I wanted to get this group's perspective given price parity. What would you recommend? Thanks
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