• If you ever spot Spam (either in the forums, or received via forum direct message) please use the Report button at the bottom of each post to make sure a Moderator can handle it quickly. Thanks for your help in keeping things running smoothly!

Dynaudio - Focus 160 or Contour 1.4S LE?

Paulq

Well-known member
Dec 2, 2007
309
9
18,895
Seriously considering swapping out my Kudos Super 20's for something with a bit more bottom end and am demoing the Contour 1.4S LE tomorrow. They get great reviews but my first time around with Dynaudios.

The other option I have, but can't demo, is to take a second hand pair of Focus 160's but I have no idea how they compare to the Contours - has anyone heard them or both?

Just slightly nervous about leaving the Kudos behind for a speaker that costs less but it's all about the sound at the end of the day.
 

ChrisIRL

New member
Apr 12, 2014
36
0
0
I had the Focus 160 for a spell and they certainly had plenty of low end welly, nearing that of Sonus Faber Toy towers! Impressive for their size. Ultimately though I found it a touch too much and mids suffered a bit. Vocals in particular sounded a bit recessed. As always it'll come down to personal preferences and the rest of your system.
 

Paulq

Well-known member
Dec 2, 2007
309
9
18,895
ChrisIRL said:
I had the Focus 160 for a spell and they certainly had plenty of low end welly, nearing that of Sonus Faber Toy towers! Impressive for their size. Ultimately though I found it a touch too much and mids suffered a bit. Vocals in particular sounded a bit recessed. As always it'll come down to personal preferences and the rest of your system.
Thanks Chris that's a helpful and, if anything, my biggest hesitation. I love the detail in the Kudos and don't want to lose that as they are incredibly revealing - just a bit light on the bottom end.

I am trying the Contour 1.4S LE tomorrow - being further up the chain they may be better in the mids/treble than the focus. Would be interested to hear views if anyone has heard them.
 

NJB

New member
Nov 28, 2008
75
0
0
I have paired various speakers with my Naim 202/200 combination. The amplifier is, to my ears, naturally bright. It has detail etc, but paired with the wrong speakers makes it a very tiring set up. I have a pair of Focus 160s and they are absolutely fabulous. Dynaudio are well known for beautiful mid ranges, and my set up feels really well balanced now. I cannot comment on the Contours, but I seem to recall reading that the Focus 160s had excellent reviews and Dynaudio had some marketing issues because they were too close to Contours and were stealing customers from the Contours. I clearly cannot vouch for that, but I can say that in the right set up, the Focus 160s are going to make you smile, a lot. They have certainly killed my upgrade-itous for the last year.
 

Paulq

Well-known member
Dec 2, 2007
309
9
18,895
NJB said:
I have paired various speakers with my Naim 202/200 combination. The amplifier is, to my ears, naturally bright. It has detail etc, but paired with the wrong speakers makes it a very tiring set up. I have a pair of Focus 160s and they are absolutely fabulous. Dynaudio are well known for beautiful mid ranges, and my set up feels really well balanced now. I cannot comment on the Contours, but I seem to recall reading that the Focus 160s had excellent reviews and Dynaudio had some marketing issues because they were too close to Contours and were stealing customers from the Contours. I clearly cannot vouch for that, but I can say that in the right set up, the Focus 160s are going to make you smile, a lot. They have certainly killed my upgrade-itous for the last year.
Thanks NJB that's helpful. And in some ways makes it harder to decide as everything else I had read seemed to indicate that there was not only a significant difference between the two but also that the Dyns suffered from rather recessed mids and highs. One of the things I love about the Kudos is their level of detail - I am just trying to find a speaker that retains that but also adds in slightly more bottom end.

I have a set of the Contours in a box at home and will be trying them tomorrow. Assuming I like them I have a straight choice between buying a set of those at around £2600 or buying the Focus 160's blind at around £1600.

Speakers are a nightmare to get right.
 

ChrisIRL

New member
Apr 12, 2014
36
0
0
I would think £1600 for 2nd hand 160s is a bit overpriced. Certainly far more than I paid and subsequently sold them for. They're discontinued and were £1800 new. I'd try to haggle a better deal if you do go for them.
 

ChrisIRL

New member
Apr 12, 2014
36
0
0
A quick search shows a going rate of approx €1200. That's more in line with what I'd expect. There's a pair going in Holland with stands for €1150.
 

Paulq

Well-known member
Dec 2, 2007
309
9
18,895
I think you are right Chris there are a few available at around the price you suggested. My dilemma is whether or not to buy blind at that price as I have never ever done that before. It all hangs on the assumptions that (a ) I like the Contours when I get them hooked up later and then (b) whether, as some suggest, the Focus are as near as a gnat's nodger to the Contours.

I may, of course, not like them and thus the search continues. *biggrin*
 

Craig M.

New member
Mar 20, 2008
127
0
0
Not quite what you're after but I had Focus 110 followed by Contour 1.4s, and the Contours were much better. The Contours were better balanced and much more detailed, the 110s were soft and slow in comparison. Both needed quite a bit of room around them, I had about about a metre behind them. Partnering kit was a Caspian cdp and Primare i30 amp.
 

Paulq

Well-known member
Dec 2, 2007
309
9
18,895
Thanks for the input, help and recommendations guys - really appreciate it.

Update: I have had the Contours on for a few hours now and have to say I am a bit disappointed with them. I can completely understand why people like them and that Dynaudios appear to have a cult following. I guess I have just been completely spoiled by the detail in the Kudos and, again, these just didn't get near to that for me. Indeed the only speaker I have heard (that may have to be an option) got close was the ProAc D20r.

Must admit to be slightly gutted as I had very high hopes. Onwards....
 

NJB

New member
Nov 28, 2008
75
0
0
I find that new speakers are really challenging in the early days. I have heard some that gave that instant wow factor, but some of these soon start to grate because you really need a lot of positives from a speaker and that one wow moment soon fades. It is also obvious that your room, the speaker stands, the placement etc are all going to accentuate some frequencies or suck others out. I would not give up on the contours yet. They will take time to open up, and your ears will take time to adjust to the different presentation. A wise friend once said that speakers are always different but that does not make them worse, it just takes a few hours for your ears to tune in to the best bits.
 

Paulq

Well-known member
Dec 2, 2007
309
9
18,895
I agree but have found over the years that I just instinctively know what I like and what won't work for me. I'll give the ProAcs a try and if that doesn't work then I'll probably just stick with the Kudos.
 

Rimse

New member
Dec 14, 2012
18
0
0
there is no comparison between them focus and contour. S1.4LE is better speaker ,using mundorf capasitors in crossover.These speakers can be compared only to confidence c1 platinum or signature c1,because share similar sound.But these speakers need top amplifiers and a bit volume up :)p

I know where you can get new s1.4LE for 1800euros:)
 

Superaintit

New member
Feb 8, 2009
100
0
0
May I suggest PMC?
Detailed, natural and powerful bottom end is how I would describe them.

A second option:
As you have the very neutral hypex amp from IQ, would you consider a speaker from IQ speakers?

EDIT: considering the price of your current speakers and the ones I had my eye on (the 26 at an eye watering 5700) I would try Iq's speakers first. The rest is probably more a side grade than an upgrade.
 

Paulq

Well-known member
Dec 2, 2007
309
9
18,895
Superaintit said:
May I suggest PMC? Detailed, natural and powerful bottom end is how I would describe them.

A second option: As you have the very neutral hypex amp from IQ, would you consider a speaker from IQ speakers?

EDIT: considering the price of your current speakers and the ones I had my eye on (the 26 at an eye watering 5700) I would try Iq's speakers first. The rest is probably more a side grade than an upgrade.
Thanks for the suggestion - much appreciated. When I bought the Kudos originally I had a number of speakers on demo and one of which was the PMC Twenty 23. I had read so much about them and was looking forward to hearing them but, on doing so, was again just of the opinion that they were 'not for me'. As I mentioned earlier the only other speakers that I felt got anywhere near the Kudos were the ProAcs - they were excellent.

To be honest I've pretty much decided to stick with what I have in the Kudos unless a further listen to the ProAcs in a couple of weeks sways me that way. The Super 20 really is an exceptional speaker, probably the best I have heard. Over the weekend I have been experimenting with very subtle changes to their positioning and also with the Linn Space Optimisation software. I was sceptical about that but I have to say I do think it's actually made a difference - not seismic - but definitely an improvement.

Sometimes it takes a bit of curiosity to make you realise that what youhave already is worth sticking hold of.

I'll just put the money towards an LP12 next year *dance4*
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY

TRENDING THREADS

Latest posts