Dali Mentor Menuet - Is This A High Quality Mini-Monitor?

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I will be auditioning these speakers tomorrow at a local dealer and hopefully I'll find them to be fairly good. I've owned and listened to many mini-monitors - PMC LB1 Sigs, Proac Tablette 50 Sigs, B&W N805, CDM 1SE, Totem Model 1, Sonus Faber Concerto, Harbeth P3ESR, Marten Duke and many more. Each and every of these monitors have their own tradeoffs, either a sound that's too lean, bright and analytical or a sound that's too warm and lacking in detail. Well, you get what I mean.. it's difficult to find a speaker that is musical and sounds balanced across the frequency spectrum since no speaker is perfect.

Having said that, after much survey I have narrowed down my choice to the Dali Mentor Menuet after reading some of the stellar reviews posted by those who have listened to them. Over here on Whathifi the Menuets seem to have received mixed receptions. I would like to know if this speaker is an excellent all-rounder that can be keepers of some sort. Can the Menuets keep up with the speed and transient attack in rock music? Does it possess ample detail in the mids and highs to reproduce the raw plucking of acoustic or electric guitars? Is the treble airy and detailed enough and yet does not sound too sharp or strident?

I understand that small mini-monitors with drivers smaller than 5" can't do much scale or bass. However, that wouldn't be an issue for me as I am looking for the clarity, airiness and imaging qualities that mini-monitors do so well. However, the bass must still be there, taut, tight and textured. It doesn't need to go deep or sound too punchy. As long as the bass lines are defined it should be fine for me.

Lastly, can I say that the Mentor Menuets are a class above the Monitor Audio RX1?

Any thoughts would be most appreciated.
 
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Anonymous

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Can't edit own thread here? Typo in the first line, "I'll find "them" not "they"
 

matthewpiano

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Nov 23, 2007
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The first question I would ask is, what is the rest of your system?

You've been through some cracking speakers there. I wonder if the other parts of your set-up are partly to blame.
 
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Anonymous

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This new mini-monitor will be set up in a secondary system to complement my Harbeth SHL5.

Amplification is Naim NAC202/NAP200/Dual Teddycap Mk3. Sources Krell KPS-30i, Rega P5. May consider getting another integrated amp if the need arises.
 

matthewpiano

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Nov 23, 2007
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I can't imagine that system being a problem!

I haven't heard the Mentor Menuets so I can't comment directly, but I have had experience of several Dali speakers and I would imagine the Menuets are well worth auditioning. Dali's drive units seem to be particularly good and cohesion and communication seem to be a consistent trait of their speakers.

Have you considered auditioning the KEF LS50?
 
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Anonymous

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Thanks for the thoughts.

The Harbeths are inherently warm and smooth sounding speakers and slightly rolled-off in the highs. The new standmount will need to be more open and transparent in the midrange with airier and detailed highs. The Proac Tablettes seem to have these traits but sound too lean in the mids to my ears, bordering on analytical rather than musical. Listening fatigue can be high in prolonged listening sessions. I've read about the Mentor Menuets being able to retain the musicality in the mids whilst having all the other hifi traits.

Haven't heard of the KEF LS50 and will check it out, though I am hoping that the Dali audition tomorrow will turn out fine. I usually don't expect any fireworks or a feeling of euphoria during demo sessions so I'm not sure on what to expect.

Cheers.
 

ID.

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Feb 22, 2010
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I think the Dali's are nicely balanced, but like all speakers, there is a tradeoff.

I thought they were lovely speakers and good value for money, but I ended up with a pair of PMC DB1i. From the sound of your comments, it looks like your issues are with the voicing of the individual brands/speakers rather than bass depth/quantity which is usually the main issue with small speakers, so hopefully you find a set with the right balance for your ears.
 

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