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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hey folks. I've gotten several requests for information about the Chane (formerly "Arx") loudspeaker line, and specifically the project I was involved in, the A5 Towers. Chane is designed by Jon Lane over at Chane Music & Cinema and the forums are here.

This is the official AVS thread for all Chane loudspeakers (A1.4, A2.4, A5.4, L Series [L7, L6, et al], etc).

I was simply unaware that so many people who are active on Chane forums are also active here on AVS. I find this forum to be a powerful resource and effective online community.

So, anybody who has any questions, concerns, comments, reviews, observations, etc......put 'em here.

Also, so that there is no confusion, I do not work for Chane or Jon Lane. I have chosen to voluntarily collaborate with Jon and Chane on several different loudspeaker projects, but have received no compensation. So, any CS comments, reviews, questions, or concerns should be sent to [email protected].

Here is my Chane/Arx A5 announcement thread on AVS:

https://www.avsforum.com/t/1421120/new-arx-a5-towers


More observations and reviews by others:

https://www.avnirvana.com/threads/av-nirvana-speaker-evaluation-event-tower-speakers-1200-or-less-results.1640/#post-15058

http://www.hometheatershack.com/forums/home-audio-speakers/84858-official-1-000-speaker-evaluation-home-audition-event-results.html



See the Chane forum for A5.4 updates, as well as Chane L Series updates. Photos and media debut there first. Login required for pic/video access.


Chane A Series Webpage:

https://www.chanemusiccinema.com/a-series-speakers/


Lastly, Chane Music and Cinema is now on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/chanemusiccinema
 

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Cool! Glad to have an Arx owners thread now.


Next week sometime I will post my A5 review on here. Now I wait for Jon to give us some info on those A4 surrounds
 

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Thank you, Buford. I have the A1s, A2 and the A5s and they sound great. Very clear and transparent. Highly recommended.
 

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Here is a copy of my ARX A5 that I posted on The Audio Insider site:


I have not fully broken in my A5s, but I have some definite impressions already. They are quite slim at a only a little over 7” wide. My wife referred to them as “elegant” which is not often applied to ARX. Like the A1b, these are heavy and rock solid. These are nominally 6 ohm speakers, but I left my receiver’s setting at 8 ohms and had no problems, even at high volumes. These speakers have a high 91dB sensitivity and will not tax any reasonable modern receiver, at least not at normal volumes. I can’t speak for the amp requirements for Buford’s speaker torture tests.


The speakers are closer to the front wall than recommended; less than two feet to the front baffle, but that did not seem to hurt the bass in any way. All listening was with the ports open. The port plugs were missing, due to a shipping error.


My choice of source material could not be more different than Buford’s. First I listened to Beethoven's Ninth (Karajan, 1984). This contains double-bass solos, full orchestra, four solo voices and a large chorus. This is a real test for any speaker. I'm using 2-channel stereo mode with the A5s set to large and the center speaker off and no sub. The A5s have a great soundstage with amazing imaging. I could pinpoint each solo voice clearly. What distinguishes the A5 from other speakers I have heard is its clarity. Both solo voices and the chorus are amazingly clear and well-defined. There is not a hint of mushiness or vagueness in the orchestral parts.


My wife, Marguerite, commented that "it sounds like you are actually there," meaning the speakers disappear and you just hear the music. This is much more significant than you can imagine. My wife is an intensely visual person. She is an artist; she teaches ceramics at a city museum, but she is much less interested in sound. With our old HT setup she would listen to TV through the TV speakers and not bother to turn on the receiver (though that’s partially because of the quality of our old speakers). She thought the A1bs sounded pretty good and were clear, but the A5s really impressed her. The sound was absolutely transparent.


Buford said to get the woofer cones moving for break-in. I don’t have any bass-heavy music, but I remembered the creation scene in the movie Tree of Life had a lot of bass. It also has a single soprano voice singing some kind of hymn. With the other sound effects, this is a good test of the highs, the lows and the midrange. While my wife was out I cranked up the volume, put the Blu-Ray on repeat chapter and gave the A5s a workout.. Once again, the music and the sound effects were a model of clarity. You will not get fatigued listening to these speakers. Even with the volume too loud (for me), the A5s sounded effortless. There were no signs of strain or increased distortion. Yes, the cones were moving visibly.


I continued my testing with The Stones, Santana, Eric Clapton, U2, Stan Getz, Brubeck, Tchaikovsky and Bach. It became very clear that the limiting factor is the source material, not the speakers. U2 was vague. Getz was mixed. Listening to Brubeck’s “Blue Rondo A La Turk” recorded in 1959 my wife said, “it’s like there’s a piano in the room.” The clarity was amazing. They really cleaned up the original source material. On the other hand, the Leningrad Philharmonic playing Tchaikovsky sounded compressed and rather vague, even though it is a digital recording. I blame the engineers, not the speakers. With the A5s, you will really find out how good your source material is. You may be disappointed in some material that sounded good with lesser speakers.


I did not do any critical listening to movies. In stereo mode I did find dialog from TV and movies clearer than with my center speaker on. If it’s just you at the LP, the A5s handle the center channel fine. I did not test it off-axis, where I would expect a center channel speaker to be better. I’ll leave it to others to review the A5s with other types of music and movies.


Listening to the A1bs as mains before the A5s arrived, I wondered if I had made a mistake spending so much more to get the A5s. The A1bs played loud enough for me and had no obvious flaws. I have nothing bad to say about the A1bs and I can’t quantitatively explain the difference in sound. However, the A1bs sound like good speakers and the A5s sound like there are no speakers, just the music (with good source material). I guess the dedicated midrange help put it over the edge. This makes the A5s an incredible value. I thought it would take at least the Salk SoundScapes to achieve this level of transparency. I admit that this is an exaggeration for anyone with a better ear than mine.


With apologies to Monty Python, there is one word to describe the A5 speakers: clarity. And transparency. Two words: clarity and transparency. And effortlessness. Three words: clarity, transparency and effortlessness. And value. Four words: clarity, transparency, effortlessness and value. Nobody expects a speaker this good at its price.
 

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This is a copy of my review of the ARX A1b on The Audio Insider site. I wrote this before I hooked up the A5s.


My initial impressions of the A1b delivery and set-up is posted at http://www.theaudioinsider.com/forum/showthread.php?1656-They-re-Here !!! I hooked them up as mains and played a variety of music, except heavy metal and hip hop. I ran YPAO (Yamaha’s Audessy) and they specified that these speakers were 5.5dB less sensitive than my old towers. I had guessed 3dB. They do need more power from my receiver, but nothing any modern receiver can’t handle. They have a rated sensitivity of 85 dB.


At first they sounded good but a little “small” or “tight.” You knew you were listening to speakers. As they broke in, the sound became smoother and more expansive. I don’t know if they are fully broken in yet, but I think I can write a review now. The first improvement I noticed from my old tower speakers was the improved soundstage. For the first time I became aware of a 3-D soundstage as well as left-to-right imaging. Everything sounded very precise. Nothing sounded muddy or mushy.


The thing that impressed me the most was the clarity across the spectrum. Everything was clean, clear and balanced. No shrill highs; no midbass boom. This is a very neutral speaker. I was expecting to hear a big difference with the planar tweeter, although I didn’t know what that really meant. Instead, I just heard the music. The tweeter does its job without shouting “Here I am.” This is as it should be. I hate shrill “forward” highs.


I’ve been listening in stereo 2.0 mode with the speakers set to “large” to maximize their use for break-in. Listening to TV, the phantom center is very clear and rock solid. I think voices are clearer with the A1bs than with my old center. I plan to use one A1b as a center with the A5s until the A2b arrives.


I don’t play music fillings-loosening loud, but these little speakers easily fill my 12x20x8 room with one end open to the kitchen and a hall. The A1b is so good I’ve actually been wondering if I made a mistake buying the A5s since these seem to be doing the job. Of course I haven’t used them with movies yet. I’m sure I’ll know why I got the A5s when I hook them up and start listening to them


Overall, this speaker belies its size and its price. And my wife likes the way it looks.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Barnacle,


Thank you for contributing.
 

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Here's my review (taken from the TAI forum)


---


My A5s arrived today. Here are my initial listening impressions:


The first time I hooked them up, they sounded like brand new A1s. The planar tweeter was sounding good but the bass was not yet "full" and they need some break-in time. So left them on and went out for a couple of hours to do some chores.


After coming back, I was surprised that they are already sounding a lot better. I mean, it took about a week or more for me to break in my A1s and A2. Right off the bat I noticed the increased clarity. These were not just A1s that played louder. The highs seemed a bit more pronounced and the midrange was amazing. It seemed that there was more spacing between instruments and the vocals. Not sure if this is the treble adjustment and improved midrange resolution that Jon and Buford talked about in their prior posts (nonetheless, thank you).


I was surprised to hear sounds coming from the A5s that I did not hear before on the current track that was playing (LMFAO). I was like, "was that there before?", and I had to rewind the track... I was waiting until the full break in to play my wife's favorite tunes but I had to check. I played the live performances from Daryl Hall's website and was amazed at the increased clarity. My wife stopped by to listen. I switched from stereo to 5.0 and could not tell the difference between the whole Arx system (with the A2 and A1s fully broken in) and just the A5s. I asked my wife to close her eyes and see if she can hear any difference (she sings in a band). I was pleasantly surprised when she said I prefer the prior one (just the A5s)--they're clearer and louder. I used to do this with the A1s and she always preferred the A2 with the A1s playing vs. just the A1s. She then said that she liked the A5s the best and gave a compliment "it's better than your prior [HTIB ribbon] speakers" (she always compares those to the A1s and prefers them). She then asked about the price and I told her about the value of the first group buy, which made her happy.


We then had to stop and just listen to our favorite songs (and enjoy the music). Amazing! I'll probably sound like Buford in his initial impressions of the A5 prototypes but the sound really seems to envelop you. I did not notice how loud the A5s were playing (I was using my normal 50% volume), when my wife told me she could not hear me because it seems that she's surrounded by sound in 3D. The A5s do sound a lot bigger than their physical size. The attributes Buford mentioned in his initial impression of the prototypes that convinced me to avail of the group buy are true!


Thank you Buford for "pestering" Jon to create the A5s and of course, thank you Jon for such a wonderful product. I really enjoyed my A1s and A2 and thought that they could not be outdone by the A5s.


Clarity, transparency, efficiency and value (I agree to what Bill said). Great job folks! Call me impressed.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by D'Argo  /t/1429229/the-official-arx-owners-thread-a1-a1b-a2-a2b-a3-a5-etc#post_22460122


Clarity, transparency, efficiency and value (I agree to what Bill said). Great job folks! Call me impressed.

Actually I said "clarity, transparency, effortlessness and value" but efficiency is good too.



It's amazing how all the A5 reviews describe them so consistently. The virtues of the A5 are so obvious that they jump out at you no matter how trained, or untrained your ear is.


D'Argo, did you break in your A5s "until the sound runs clear?" Sorry, I couldn't resist.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by BarnacleBill  /t/1429229/the-official-arx-owners-thread-a1-a1b-a2-a2b-a3-a5-etc#post_22465287


It's amazing how all the A5 reviews describe them so consistently. The virtues of the A5 are so obvious that they jump out at you no matter how trained, or untrained your ear is.

Its amazing what Jon has been able to accomplish with the A5s, especially at the price he's offering for them. IMO anyone looking for a pair of towers under $1000 should look no further. Shoppers looking for towers over a grand and close to $2k should have the Arx A5 on their short list for sure.


I have to say that purchasing the A5s has probably been one of the best audio decisions i've every made by far. So far none of the Arx models have disappointed me in any way. I feel they (A1, A2s and A5s) compete with much more expensive speakers and offer better quality components and build quality than some speakers costing double the price maybe even more so.


I can't wait to see what Jon is able to do with the possible Arx A4 surround model and Arx Asub 10".
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by gtpsuper24  /t/1429229/the-official-arx-owners-thread-a1-a1b-a2-a2b-a3-a5-etc#post_22465906


I feel they (A1, A2s and A5s) compete with much more expensive speakers and offer better quality components and build quality than some speakers costing double the price maybe even more so.

You would be even more amazed if you heard the A1b. It's a small 2-way and it sounds like a smaller version of the A5. Yes, the A5 is deeper, louder and has a slightly smoother mid-range, but the A1b really matches it sonically. They make great front speakers for a small room and/or small budget.
 

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I haven't had a chance to listen to the A1b's yet. I do have the older A1s from about a year ago and they made me sell off my Axiom speakers. They replaced the Axiom M22 as mains. Then ordered an A2 center last year to replace the VP150 Axiom CC and then went with A2 mains and moved the A1s for surrounds, replaced the Axiom M2s back there, then jumped on the A5s a few weeks ago. Debating if I have any more room for more Arx speakers



I could squeeze a pair of A1bs for rear surrounds but the A2s have such a huge soundstage for surrounds that I don't think the A1bs would make much difference.
 

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What would the port plug do to the sound of these speakers?


I'm looking at purchasing a set soon.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by FlipCpt45  /t/1429229/the-official-arx-owners-thread-a1-a1b-a2-a2b-a3-a5-etc#post_22520916


What would the port plug do to the sound of these speakers?

I'm looking at purchasing a set soon.

I've not noticed any difference in sound from open ports to plugged ports, other than sealing the ports limits bass output. I think unless the back of the speaker is close to a wall then I would leave the ports open. I've tried to find a difference but didn't hear anything. I used A1s, A2 LCRs, and A5 towers. I really think the ports are used for placement issues more than improving the sound quality.
 

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I am looking to upgrade my bedroom 2.1 setup, from my old Infinities to likely a bookshelf. Has anyone who owns the A1b heard the HTD Level 3 bookshelf speakers, or perhaps the HSU HB-1 Mk. 2? I am sort of in that $300-400 range for a pair of bookshelves to go with my BIC F-12.

On an additional note, what kind of improvements in sound could I expect to see from using the Arx A2b as mains (rotated)?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by FlipCpt45  /t/1429229/the-official-arx-owners-thread-a1-a1b-a2-a2b-a3-a5-etc#post_22520916


What would the port plug do to the sound of these speakers?

I'm looking at purchasing a set soon.

GTP pretty much hit the nail on the head. The Arx speakers are all pretty well damped (they don't ring or hang), so the port plugs really just alter the bass rolloff below about 90-100hz. The rolloff begins at a higher frequency with the plugs in place.


For the A5's, which are critically damped designs....the plug are basically superfluous. They're included, but they are certainly not needed. There is no bass bloat at all.


As GTP said, unless you have your Arx speakers hugging a back wall, the plugs will likely not be necessary.
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Transmaniacon  /t/1429229/the-official-arx-owners-thread-a1-a1b-a2-a2b-a3-a5-etc#post_22521426


I am looking to upgrade my bedroom 2.1 setup, from my old Infinities to likely a bookshelf. Has anyone who owns the A1b heard the HTD Level 3 bookshelf speakers, or perhaps the HSU HB-1 Mk. 2? I am sort of in that $300-400 range for a pair of bookshelves to go with my BIC F-12.

On an additional note, what kind of improvements in sound could I expect to see from using the Arx A2b as mains (rotated)?

I haven't heard the A1b's yet. I have the slightly smaller discontinued A1s which were replaced by the A1bs. Haven't heard the HTDs, but I did hear the HSUs and ended up with the Arx's. The A2b would offer a huge soundstage and have much better bass and more effieciency.
 

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I thought perhaps I might add my 02 on the A5's...


I was at that GTG this past weekend in PA. The main demo room/torture chamber
was in the basement, while the A5's were upstairs. Because of that I didn't have sufficient time with them to get a full understanding of their character, but I did at least hear them long enough to get familiar with the sound signature.


To me they sounded fairly neutral, warm even. I detected no harshness, sibilance or exaggerated highs. The room was pretty big, so I didn't really expect them to be overly bright anyway. Even though the placement was less than ideal I still think the sound stage was quite wide, especially in the midrange. They aren't afraid of volume either; we had them cranked up rather high, yet they didn't seem to lose their composure. They simply got louder, without losing refinement.
 

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Would the A5s be too much for a small bedroom around 1000cuF?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by FlipCpt45  /t/1429229/the-official-arx-owners-thread-a1-a1b-a2-a2b-a3-a5-etc#post_22527149


Would the A5s be too much for a small bedroom around 1000cuF?

No the A5s won't be too much for a bedroom or small living room. As long as you can get them setup correctly. Not pushed into corners or up against walls and not near field setup. You should be fine IMO. I've had towers before in a small room with success but there wasn't much else in there. If your room is filled up with not much space then I think your better off with bookshelfs.
 
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