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Discussion Starter #1
Hello Guys -

I'm ready to upgrade my bookshelfs in my current setup. I have read many bookshelf recommendations in various price ranges, but I want advise from the pro's. Music is my absolute main priority for my speakers (Grateful Dead, Electronic, etc.. mostly), but I do watch TV daily. The room it resides in is very small : ~ 15 ft x 8 ft.
My current setup consists of:

  • Harman / Kardon HK 3490 (120 watts x 2 channels) - HK -> optical cable -> soundcard -> PC.
  • Paradigm Studio Monitors - I wish I knew what year these were (all there is a serial #) - perhaps one of the original studio monitor??
  • Bose Model 141 - Compatible with receivers rated 10-80 watts per channel
Both of the Paradigm's tweeters are busted, but everything else is great with them. I contacted Paradigm on inquiring how much it would cost to fix ; I believe it was ~$375 for the two tweeters and having to ship them to Canada. They were practically given to me, and the Bose was passed down from my father.



My price range for new bookshelfs is between $400-$500 and auditioning speakers for me is nearly impossible.

My interests:

  • JBL Studio 530 : this is my top pick after all the researching I've done about it. Especially as it doesn't sound to skimp on the Bass. Only thing is I'm not the biggest fan of its aesthetics (very minor!)
  • JBL Pro LSR308 : Appears similar but more investigation is required.
  • Infinity R162/R152 :
  • EMP R5Bi : with a lower price tag and the high regard I've read about- seems like a solid to me.
  • Focal Chorus 706 V2 :
  • Paradigm Atom V7 - This caught my interest as its of smaller caliber and perhaps might be sensible.
If anyone could help guide me with my decision , I'd appreciate that much.. The small room definitely hinders things, which is why the smaller speakers crossed my mind. Even though I would rather get the larger speakers. I'm open to any suggestions pertaining to my whole set-up, if there's anything that I should be changing. I'd like to make the best out of what I can.


Thanks,
Gene
 

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I hear you about the looks of the JBL Studio 530, although I've heard it looks much better in person. These were the next on my list to audition, however, after hearing the R5Bi's I didn't feel I needed to go further. But I own a subwoofer, and the R5Bi's NEED a subwoofer to round out the lower end. Plus, they are still out of stock and it would be too expensive to ship to Canada (I assume) once their stock is replenished. The JBL, on the other hand, looks to have good bass response below 50 Hz and would be my choice on your list. If you decide to go with a smaller bookshelf, make sure you include the price for a sub.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the reply dsrussell,

I agree it would make the most sense as I don't plan on getting a subwoofer (atleast not anytime soon). My plan was to keep the Paradigms until I could afford new towers; not to ditch them and go for a smaller bookshelf with a sub. I guess really the only obstacle with the JBL 530s would be placing them properly, I'm uncertain putting them where my Bose currently reside will work. I'll get creative :). From what I understand from your post the Paradigm + JBL 530 will do just nicely. The HK 3490 would give enough power to them though, correct?

Thanks
 

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I think the JBL and Focal speakers are in a different class. I love my EMPtek speakers and they sound great, but a 225/pr speaker most often won't sound as good as a 600/pr speaker. If you are willing to spend 600, the choice should be obvious, especially as DS points out, the EMPs really need a good sub.
 

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The 3490 will power just fine IMO
 

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From that list I would go with the LSR308s, especially if you aren't going to be using a sub. The 308s will easily have the best bass performance in that list, no question. The FR of the 308s is VERY flat. It's not normally recommended in home audio because its large and doesn't have a high WAF (it was made for professional workplaces after all), but the performance will be very high with respect to your dollar.
 

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My price range for new bookshelfs is between $400-$500 and auditioning speakers for me is nearly impossible.

My interests:

  • JBL Studio 530 : this is my top pick after all the researching I've done about it. Especially as it doesn't sound to skimp on the Bass. Only thing is I'm not the biggest fan of its aesthetics (very minor!)

  • That is my choice - and they are really good sounding - with such good sound,
    they will not look that bad - and the cabinet is well built, so no real resonance
    issues with the sound.
    They have been preferred over more costly speakers.

    Now do not tell dsrussel - but a pair recently sold on Ebay for $310.:)
 

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^ You're bad, zeig ... really bad !! :D
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for the information guys - it looks like I am down to JBL 530 vs JBL LSR308. I think both appear to be solid choices. Shadyj's comment makes sense. Whatever I end up getting are going to be in use until I can afford towers (or if i change my mind a sub). I'm going to keep an eye out on deals for the 530s - as I'm not in a dire situation.

Thanks again guys!
 
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