Need some exciting sounding speakers....


New member
Aug 10, 2019
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About 6 years ago I bought an Arcam Alpha 9 amp and and Alpha 8se when they were on special (being replaced by the diva series). I've been using them with an old pair of floorstanders ever since, never gettting round to buying speakers. The problem : I feel, even through my terrible old floorstanders, that the arcam electronics sound very boring and lack dynamics and punch - a generally too refined and dull sound (I remember my old denon receiver sounding much more exciting).

Is it possible to make up for this with a good pair of standmounts?

The room is about 4 x 4 metres, the music. I listen to is mostly badly recorded punk/rock such as The Misfits, Danzig, some other things like Tim Buckley, some soul and jazz.

I've listened to a few so far but the problem is that it's so limited here in New Zealand its impossible to compare anything within the same store :

Dynaudio 42 : These sounding awful and flat with the arcam electronics used in the store, no offence to anyone who owns them

Polk Lsi 7 : Not bad, but a a bit slow and with a 'sheen' to the treble that didn't do it for me.

B&W 601s3 : listened to in a department store with an Onkyo receiver, and a multi disc player. Sounded better than anything else I'd heard, but I'm not sure what they'd be like with the arcams...

Monitor Audio BR5 : havn't heard these yet but I'm not too keen on floorstanders. The problem is the BR2's aren't imported in this country, so even If I like these, importing the BR2's would mean that I'd practically bought a pair of speakers without hearing them.

Mission 781's: can be gotten into a store (on request). Years ago I heard the mission 780's, they had a great midrange, but I'm not sure they'd have the upbeat sound I'm looking for.

That's it. That's all that's available here for my price range.

Does anyone have any suggestions? Would the B&W's be a good match? If I were to trade in my amp what would be a good choice?

Thanks to anyone who replies.


Andrew Everard

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May 30, 2007
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IMHO I think you're on the money with your diagnosis of the problem, and it's not the speakers! If the Arcams sounded dull with the Dynaudios I think you've answered your own question - you can put life back into a system with speakers if it's lacking from the player and amp. All the speakers can do is further modify the signal coming from upstream by introducing colorations of their own.

FWIW, I'd suggest the B&Ws would be the best bet with your current set-up, but you might want to consider a new amp and a new player as well. WHFSV has tests and of course the 2007 Awards upcoming which should give you a steer.


...even the cd player? Thank's for the reply, although that's not what I wanted to hear as I have a budget that covers speakers, stands and cables. If I were to trade in the Arcams I could probably only afford the Rotel A0-03 and a budget equivalent player. I guess those might still be an improvement...