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Discussion Starter #261
Here's something sorta interesting.

Here are measurements of C1s with sub in my room using Dirac Live:


And here are the Atoms:


Everything under 1kHz is the room. They both have a similar dip in the 2-4kHz with a little bump up in the middle of the dip. Maybe that's the room, who knows. But the main difference is the bump at 15kHz on the Atoms. Is that the HD "sparkle"? I think so. I made correct curves both full range (that remove that bump) and a correction curve that only goes to 600Hz, leaving the hump. When i switch back and forth, i lose or gain the sparkle. So i guess that is it! Interesting. So based on this, the C1s are indeed flatter and the Atoms cheat a little up top.
 

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Here's something sorta interesting.

Here are measurements of C1s with sub in my room using Dirac Live:


And here are the Atoms:


Everything under 1kHz is the room. They both have a similar dip in the 2-4kHz with a little bump up in the middle of the dip. Maybe that's the room, who knows. But the main difference is the bump at 15kHz on the Atoms. Is that the HD "sparkle"? I think so. I made correct curves both full range (that remove that bump) and a correction curve that only goes to 600Hz, leaving the hump. When i switch back and forth, i lose or gain the sparkle. So i guess that is it! Interesting. So based on this, the C1s are indeed flatter and the Atoms cheat a little up top.
I didn't realize you were a teenager. I'm slightly older than that, and I probably couldn't hear any difference. 15 kHz is awfully high to impart a bright signature to a speaker. Most dome tweeters have a peak in that area, but it usually doesn't bother people. On the other hand, I don't know how to interpret Dirac Live plots. My experience is based on 1 - 2 meter anechoic measurements.
 

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I'm sure Dennis is complimenting you on your hearing range, and not insinuating that you are a youngster... lol
 
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Discussion Starter #264
Ha, yeh i thought about that topic while i was typing that last night. I'm 39 and according to an online hearing test i can hear up to 16kHz. but yeh, that bump is prob too high to hear. Maybe its more the relative bump compared to the uncorrected dip below it. The difference is very clear though, I bet i could A/B test it 100%. I should compare correction up to 10KHz with full correction to limit the comparison to only that bump's range.
 

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Discussion Starter #266
Q150s are out. They're an acceptable choice at $300, but they're too muffled and laid back for me. I wouldn't recommend them at their MSRP of $600.

The Atoms could be keepers as the best all rounder. Great detail and accuracy, flat response, full sound. I paid $240 for them, a very good value. They could run standalone.

C1s could be keepers for clarity, transparency, imaging, and overall voicing. Their heft and build quality is also very good. But they do sound small. If a sub is in the budget, these in a 2.1 system would be a good way to go. I would prob do just this if I wasn't so curious about the C3...

The C1 is great and the C3 is supposedly very great. The measurements and reviews are excellent. Couldn't help myself when i saw them on sale so i pulled the trigger. Kinda violates this shootout's budget, but it will be an interesting data point. What can spending twice as much get you?
 

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What can spending twice as much get you?
Depends on the tier, I guess. Usually it's better drivers/crossover components, and nicer cabinets.

Sad to see the Q150s get the boot. FWIW they're perpetually on sale anyway, so I don't think anyone would have to pay the full $600 MSRP.
 

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Q150s are out. They're an acceptable choice at $300, but they're too muffled and laid back for me. I wouldn't recommend them at their MSRP of $600.

The Atoms could be keepers as the best all rounder. Great detail and accuracy, flat response, full sound. I paid $240 for them, a very good value. They could run standalone.
Been following this thread since almost the beginning and I have to say I'm a bit surprised by this. I recall you said once that the Atoms could be fatiguing on a long listening session. Would be curious to hear your thoughts now with regard to that.

Also, I'm most likely getting the Q150s based on your many descriptions of them, I feel they fit into my musical preferences and the type of music I'll be listening to. Plus I will not have a sub for a while and these feel like the best fit for that situation.

And I agree about your price comment. I'll be getting them refurbished.


Tim
 

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Discussion Starter #269 (Edited)
Been following this thread since almost the beginning and I have to say I'm a bit surprised by this. I recall you said once that the Atoms could be fatiguing on a long listening session. Would be curious to hear your thoughts now with regard to that.

Also, I'm most likely getting the Q150s based on your many descriptions of them, I feel they fit into my musical preferences and the type of music I'll be listening to. Plus I will not have a sub for a while and these feel like the best fit for that situation.

Tim

When I first started listening to the Atoms i was afraid the "sparkle" might wear on me with time, but fortunately that never happened. I've had 'em on my desk here since last Thursday morning and i listen to music almost constantly here since i'm working from home, etc. They gave a "hifi" experience that i decided is what i wanted. I like turning on the music and being wow'ed a bit at what i can hear and "see".

The Q150s are nice. I'd certainly give 'em a shot. Unfortunately it seems they're back to $600 at Crutchfield, but i'd highly recommend buying from there when they drop again. They've been a breeze to return speakers to. $10 3 day shipping, and they approved and refunded my on the 4th day. I'm learning the hard way with the Ascends which i bought direct. I paid $36 to ship them to me and i got a return quote today of $92! (anyone in the Boston area want some Ascend CBM-170s? :p)
 

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Want another speaker

Elac has some Uni-Fi UB5 open box for $350/pair. Could be an interesting last minute addition....


Tim
 

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Discussion Starter #271
Elac has some Uni-Fi UB5 open box for $350/pair. Could be an interesting last minute addition....


Tim

Dang... i almost pulled the trigger, except I checked the return policy and i'd be on the hook for shipping to me and back to them. And they're in CA just like Ascend. That's a plenty fair policy, but i can't keep paying for return shipping. I don't think these can hang with the C3s from what i gather so prob not worth the gamble.
 

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so .. what's the latest on the c3's ? ...edit : i'm very interested in how much better the c3's are when both are using a sub...
 

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Discussion Starter #273
so .. what's the latest on the c3's ? ...edit : i'm very interested in how much better the c3's are when both are using a sub...

They're lost in UPS purgatory. Should have arrived Wednesday, but were delayed, then delayed again, then i held for pickup, went to pickup and they couldn't find the box. Now i have to wait till Monday to try and pick them up again. Two other packages are also lost there somewhere. I saw they have a big expansion dock thing out in the parking lot full of boxes and they were overflowing and spilling out onto the parking lot. Obviously circumstances are unusual and this is a first world problem. But man, what a **** show over there.


I need to submit the return request for the Q150s and Paradigms today so i hope the C3s come in time for me to compare them all.
 

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They're lost in UPS purgatory. Should have arrived Wednesday, but were delayed, then delayed again, then i held for pickup, went to pickup and they couldn't find the box. Now i have to wait till Monday to try and pick them up again. Two other packages are also lost there somewhere. I saw they have a big expansion dock thing out in the parking lot full of boxes and they were overflowing and spilling out onto the parking lot. Obviously circumstances are unusual and this is a first world problem. But man, what a **** show over there.
Dang, that sounds just like Fed Ex!
 

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They're lost in UPS purgatory. Should have arrived Wednesday, but were delayed, then delayed again, then i held for pickup, went to pickup and they couldn't find the box. Now i have to wait till Monday to try and pick them up again. Two other packages are also lost there somewhere. I saw they have a big expansion dock thing out in the parking lot full of boxes and they were overflowing and spilling out onto the parking lot. Obviously circumstances are unusual and this is a first world problem. But man, what a **** show over there.


I need to submit the return request for the Q150s and Paradigms today so i hope the C3s come in time for me to compare them all.
well that sux.. let's hope for a better end than beginning ...i'm really interested in how they compare...
 

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To the O.P. - It looks like I'm too late to throw anything else in (and that's ok), but I have oft-expressed my affinity on these boards for pair of Emp Tek r5Bi's that I bought for under-your-budget, back when RBH was selling under that internet-direct label. I believe they still sell r5Bi's, now under the RBH brand, and I believe the price has risen a bit since I bought, to the point where we need the "ish" part of your "$300-ish" in order to apply, but I think they might fit the description of what you described as "desirable" to you with your analogy of speakers as Salt...
Is the current version still warm in the midrange or have they balanced them out?
 

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Is the current version still warm in the midrange or have they balanced them out?
I have not heard the current version, and can't comment. I reached out to RBH and asked how the new version(s) (different material options on the woofer cone, now, I believe) might pair with my old(er) Emp Tek r5Bi and they told me they should all pair well and timber match, FWIW. I almost went that direction rather than building out the new Ascend system that I ultimately went with. I still thoroughly enjoy an occasional *listen* on the Emp Tek's.
 
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I guess there is the enhanced version that should have extended treble. I don't like bright speakers, but I do prefer a little more extension than the E5Bi had.
 

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I still thoroughly enjoy an occasional *listen* on the Emp Tek's.
Lucky you...I sometimes miss the original R5Bi I used to have. They had the smoothness and ease of my Wharfedales, but their soundstage was in a whole other league.
 

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Discussion Starter #280
Finally! got the C3s today. I have a few hours on the now and yep. These are good. They're pretty big, about an inch taller and half an inch wider than the PSBs, but not quite as deep. They also weigh a ton and feel twice as heavy as the PSBs or KEFs. They're definitely a sturdier build, but they also have 6.5" woofers instead of 5.25"s like the other two. Piano black finish is really nice and it has quality binding posts. The drivers are fairly ugly though. Not the best grill-off lookers.

I'll hold off on more detail until i listen to them some more and do a few comparisons, but so far they sound great. They're clear and transparent just like the C1s, but are closer to full range and have a lot more impact. They really make it seem like music is coming out of thin air with no tonal character.

I'm also picking up lots of new details in music that i know very well. Tame Impala - Let it Happen, heard a new texture that sounds like vocoded vocal "ahs", panning panning back and forth and in circles. Ive heard this song tons of times and never picked that out before. Sufjan Stevens - All Delighted People, i've listened to this hundred of times and never before heard the backup vocals so distintly. I can here the individual people and this pulsing up beat "oooh" kinda thing. I've never noticed that before! And also on one of the speaker test songs that i've fully worn out by now, Steely Dan's Aja, i picked out a high pitched bell or triangle sound in the left speaker i never noticed before.

I'm impressed! but i also haven't done a proper listen and A/B in over a week so lets see how that goes.
 
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