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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So i've been looking for a pair of fronts, and a new center to upgrade from my Polk R50's and Onkyo center.


I love my polks...for the $50/ea i paid...they sound absolutely fantastic! However...I'm looking for some fuller sound, and I absolutely need a new center...it's very muddy. Unfortunately...I can find no good audio listening shops in my area (northern VA) I looked up myer emco..they have B&W and Klipsch...I've never been a klipsch fan, they are too bright for my ears. THough last night I listened to the RF-82's and admittedly they do sound pretty good, just not perfect to my ears. I also listened to the RF-52's...way too bright, and the B&W 683's...which sounded good, but not good enough to justify their price IMO.


I've been happy with polk, but have never had the opportunity to hear their higher end RTi series speakers. The infinity primus seem to be a good bang for your buck...


here's my issue...Without being able to hear basically any of the speakers I want...or think I want...how do I choose? I can afford ~$1000-1500 for LCR's i figure I"ll move my R50's to the rear for now, and I've got a Dayton 10" sub, which for the money does a damn good job IMO. All being run off an Onkyo 503...old but functional and works fine. Will be upgrading this at some point. The room is a family room with hardwood floors, a fireplace, and two skylights. pretty good sized room not the best for acoustics...but it works. In the next year or three i'll be finishing the basement and building a dedicated theater room. I do about 20% music, 20% tv/video games, and 60% movies on this system.


Here is what i've been considering..but most i have no way of hearing because there are no dealers in a 200 mile radius...


Polk Rti series...something like the RTi10's or the RTi A7 / CSi A6 (~$1300)

--never heard these...but love polk, and the color would match my R50's

Infinity Primus 362's w/ C350 center ($500ish total!...)

--never heard...but wow they are cheap and people seem to rave about them on here. I liked infinity's beta line, and these are supposed to be newer with similar specs.

Klipsch RF-82's with RC-64 center (~$1600)

--Expensive....but sounded quite good. i listened with the RC-62 center...since I have no WAF to deal with, I'm perfectly happy having the bigger 64 center instead
My biggest issue with Klipsch is they are just very bright. I've heard them on various amps, and it's just how they are...


Other?? What else should i consider...I hate having to fly blind on this.


Thanks!
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mellman /forum/post/17000821


Unfortunately...I can find no good audio listening shops in my area (northern VA) I looked up myer emco..they have B&W and Klipsch

Wow, and I thought Denver had a lack of audio stores compared to larger market DC. I haven't spent significant time doing speaker auditions since I bought my first pair in '85 in the DC 'burbs. There was Myer Emco, and a couple of shops slightly less high end (Audio Buys - don't know if they're still around), but above Circuit City and the other big boxes. I don't know if it's the Internet, but here the only higher end shop here is Listen Up and I was disappointed that they only have B&W, NHT, Definitive Technology, and Klipsch. B&W 685 is what I am considering. They only had 1 NHT3 - no idea where the other speaker of the pair was, and not a comparable DT or Klipsch bookshelf to A/B with. So I was forced to compare to lesser NHT and Klipsch, and the only DT available was a surround speaker. Whatever happened to Boston Accoustics, Polk, and Infinity? And their subwoofer switchboard was not working, so I could only listen to the 1 set hooked up in each room. Seems like every shop that I've gone to has sub problems - the BB also didn't have theirs hooked up so I could only listen to 1 of their selection. I don't see how stores can operate like this when subs are probably one of the biggest sellers in this day and age of home theater. I tried to go to the other BB near me hoping they had a different selection, but they didn't even have a listening room! WTF??? BB and Ultimate Electronics (formerly Soundtrack, which I considered a store between super high end and the big boxes) only carries Definitive Technology, Klipsch, and Bose. Lots of people on this forum like to recommend Internet-only speakers, but I'd never buy something without hearing it.
 

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You list Richmond in your profile and I know for a fact we have at least 3 great shops/people here where you can listen to Vandersteen, Dynaudio, Dali, ATC, Gamut, Usher, Revel, Martin Logan, Monitor, Quad, ERA, Epos... to name just a few.


Pick a brand you like, go to the company website, and then do a dealer search. The act of looking for and then listening to speakers is an eye opening experience. You will discover tons of brands you never would have considered or even heard of as there are many speakers out there that don't spend 1/100th the marketing dollars of Polk, Klipsch, Paradigm, etc. Nothing against those brands or their loyal fans, I myself am a big Klipsch fan.


Never buy speakers site unseen when you live so close to literally dozens of dealers. You won't know what you are missing until you take the plunge and you will be much happier in the long run. Actually, scratch that. You will be much happier immediately.
 

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You've gotta be kidding me. In NOVA alone, a quick Google search brought up no less than EIGHT companies specializing in Audio and HT. I'll bet if I did a DC search, I'd find at least that many more. I'm not sure how close all of these are to you, but DC is what.... an hour away? You've got WAY more places to audition stuff than most folks have. I mean, you may have to drive a bit or spend a little time, but your opportunities to audition gear are quite good.

http://www.scottys-av.com/
http://www.executive411.com/
http://www.imsva.com/?gclid=CNDH8_6IppwCFYZM5QodYzSvkw
http://www.intellihouse.net/home-theater-virginia.html
http://www.audiobuysinc.com/
http://www.xtendav.com/dc/index.php
http://www.techrowe.com/
http://frontroweti.com/
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by cmarkmyers /forum/post/17004689


Never buy speakers site unseen when you live so close to literally dozens of dealers.

I just couldn't imagine buying speakers site unheard. Would you buy a car without test driving it or at least having owned/driven the same brand?


I think the OP is currently in the DC area, probably one of the top 5 markets considering both disposable income and residential space for audio/HT in addition to population. There must be other quality shops than Myer Emco.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mellman /forum/post/17000821


So i've been looking for a pair of fronts, and a new center to upgrade from my Polk R50's and Onkyo center.


I love my polks...for the $50/ea i paid...they sound absolutely fantastic! However...I'm looking for some fuller sound, and I absolutely need a new center...it's very muddy. Unfortunately...I can find no good audio listening shops in my area (northern VA) I looked up myer emco..they have B&W and Klipsch...I've never been a klipsch fan, they are too bright for my ears. THough last night I listened to the RF-82's and admittedly they do sound pretty good, just not perfect to my ears. I also listened to the RF-52's...way too bright, and the B&W 683's...which sounded good, but not good enough to justify their price IMO.


I've been happy with polk, but have never had the opportunity to hear their higher end RTi series speakers. The infinity primus seem to be a good bang for your buck...


here's my issue...Without being able to hear basically any of the speakers I want...or think I want...how do I choose? I can afford ~$1000-1500 for LCR's i figure I"ll move my R50's to the rear for now, and I've got a Dayton 10" sub, which for the money does a damn good job IMO. All being run off an Onkyo 503...old but functional and works fine. Will be upgrading this at some point. The room is a family room with hardwood floors, a fireplace, and two skylights. pretty good sized room not the best for acoustics...but it works. In the next year or three i'll be finishing the basement and building a dedicated theater room. I do about 20% music, 20% tv/video games, and 60% movies on this system.


Here is what i've been considering..but most i have no way of hearing because there are no dealers in a 200 mile radius...


Polk Rti series...something like the RTi10's or the RTi A7 / CSi A6 (~$1300)

--never heard these...but love polk, and the color would match my R50's

Infinity Primus 362's w/ C350 center ($500ish total!...)

--never heard...but wow they are cheap and people seem to rave about them on here. I liked infinity's beta line, and these are supposed to be newer with similar specs.

Klipsch RF-82's with RC-64 center (~$1600)

--Expensive....but sounded quite good. i listened with the RC-62 center...since I have no WAF to deal with, I'm perfectly happy having the bigger 64 center instead
My biggest issue with Klipsch is they are just very bright. I've heard them on various amps, and it's just how they are...


Other?? What else should i consider...I hate having to fly blind on this.


Thanks!


Have you thought about looking into the Infinity Beta Line? They use higher quality drivers and better cabinets than the Primus and usually be had for just as cheap since their discontinued.


The Primus 252 and the Beta 20 were two speakers we had at my house for a blind A/B test some time ago and the Beta 20 came out on top in every comparison.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by HDTimeShifter /forum/post/17004894


I just couldn't imagine buying speakers site unheard. Would you buy a car without test driving it or at least having owned/driven the same brand?

To be fair I don't think anyone ever suggest that. Thats why all the internet companies offer a free 30 day in home trial. That way you can audition them, and IMO, an in-home audition is 10x more valuable then a store audition.
 

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Aperion, Axiom, Ascend Acoustics, and SVS all have 30 day trials, AV123 does as well I think. Those would be a good place to start, just buy a pair of bookshelfs from each one and compared them side by side in your room and return what you don't like and finish off the rest of the system with the chosen brand.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by quadriverfalls /forum/post/17004873


You've gotta be kidding me. In NOVA alone, a quick Google search brought up no less than EIGHT companies specializing in Audio and HT. I'll bet if I did a DC search, I'd find at least that many more. I'm not sure how close all of these are to you, but DC is what.... an hour away? You've got WAY more places to audition stuff than most folks have. I mean, you may have to drive a bit or spend a little time, but your opportunities to audition gear are quite good.

http://www.scottys-av.com/
http://www.executive411.com/
http://www.imsva.com/?gclid=CNDH8_6IppwCFYZM5QodYzSvkw
http://www.intellihouse.net/home-theater-virginia.html
http://www.audiobuysinc.com/
http://www.xtendav.com/dc/index.php
http://www.techrowe.com/
http://frontroweti.com/


Thanks for the links. I've actually been to one or two oft hose places years ago...unfortunately several of them have since closed, or are a good 3-4 hours away from me.


However still none of these places carry the Infinity or Polk lines. Yes I realize there are far better brands out there than these, but I doubt I can afford them!


I wish i was in Richmond still...it was quite nice having several shops close by! I'll have to check some of these links out and see if the shops are still around and what they carry...


Quote:
Originally Posted by gtpsuper24 /forum/post/17005090


Aperion, Axiom, Ascend Acoustics, and SVS all have 30 day trials, AV123 does as well I think. Those would be a good place to start, just buy a pair of bookshelfs from each one and compared them side by side in your room and return what you don't like and finish off the rest of the system with the chosen brand.

Wow sweet thanks! I'll have to check them out...I would MUCH prefer to do an in home trial than listen on a different amp in a totally different room/setup
THANKS!
 

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Quote:
Thanks for the links. I've actually been to one or two oft hose places years ago...unfortunately several of them have since closed, or are a good 3-4 hours away from me.

Well, all I did was Googled Home Audio and Video NoVa. So, I don't know how big Virginia is, but 3-4 hours you could probably drive across the entire state of Virginia. As for some of them being closed, all of the links are active web sites so I doubt they would be closed and leave up their sites.... or maybe they could. I'm in no position to know.


But at the very least, I'd grab a Yellow pages and start doing some looking.... Home Theater, Home Audio, Home Integration, Home Audio & Video, Used Audio & Video etc. With your proximity to DC.... I'll bet you've got TONS of places to audition gear. Plus, I'll bet MANY in this economy would be more than happy to let you pay a deposit and audition stuff in your home for a period of time. That's what you do with the ID brands.... Pay in full up front, then get a refund if you return. Any re-stock charges you might incur from a local B&M for returning would be comparable to any return shipping charges from an ID brand.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by HDTimeShifter /forum/post/17004894


I just couldn't imagine buying speakers site unheard. Would you buy a car without test driving it or at least having owned/driven the same brand?


I think the OP is currently in the DC area, probably one of the top 5 markets considering both disposable income and residential space for audio/HT in addition to population. There must be other quality shops than Myer Emco.

I've bought both speakers and automobiles without throwing a saddle on them. If you know what you're looking for......
 
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