PMC Fact 12 Signature vs IB2 SE

Magic77

Member
Nov 28, 2022
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Hello,
I'm considering an upgrade path for my speakers to one of the PMC Fact 12 Signature or PMC IB2 SE and was looking for some advice on the difference between the two so I can help plan what I might want to demo first. Please keep the discussion to the two speakers mentioned - I'm not interested in changing brands.

I'm currently running a pair of PMC OB1 where I really enjoy the overall presentation and sound (including a nice solid bass and detailed but not in your face treble) but find them slightly lacking in mid range detail, particularly on piano etc. I've previously had a pair of Fact 3s which did have more detail but I found they ran over into being a bit strident / harsh especially when pushed and obviously lacked bass compared to the OB1. I've also listened to a pair of PMC 26 before which seemed very similar to the fact 3 in terms of running over to being strident / harsh and lacking bass weight. I've also heard the Fact Fenestria which were brilliant but are beyond both my budget and space...

Amplification is an Accuphase E-800 (50W (8Ohm)/100W (4 Ohm) in Class A with the ability to stretch to 100W (8 Ohm)/200W (4 Ohm) in Class AB). Some examples of the types of music I typically listen to would be Dire Straits / David Bowie / Supertramp / Deep Purple / Rainbow. Source is mainly vinyl with some streaming through Qobuz.

Reading around online the general consensus seems to be the Fact 12 is a better speaker than the IB2 SE (faster, more detailed), however I'm being driven away from the Fact 12 by my previous dislike to the Fact 3 and its potential for a more strident high end. It also looks like the Fact 12 has less bass than the IB2 SE, however I am struggling to quantify how much less is less and how this would compare to the OB1 or Fenestria?

So basically I think my main question (from people who have heard them) is twofold - how does the bass compare between the Fact 12 and IB2 and will I find the bass of the Fact 12 lacking compared to the OB1 (or for that matter find the IB2 overwhelming)? And does the Fact 12 share the somewhat strident presentation of the Fact 3 or is this tamed as per the Fenestria? All things being equal the Fact 12 is a more domestically friendly design, but there is no point in this if it doesn't deliver the goods.

And finally it looks like the IB2 is significantly easier to drive (lower impedance and higher sensitivity) than the Fact 12. I'm slightly worried that I would not have enough amp for the Fact 12s so wanted to get opinions on this as well? I have seen the E-800 do a good job of driving the Fenestrias but on paper the Fact 12s appear to need more drive than the Fenestrias.
 

Deliriumbassist

Well-known member
Apr 27, 2011
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Lower impedance is a harder load for an amplifier, not easier. However, PMC don't seem to publish minimum impedance (impedance changes based on frequency).

Although saying that, your E-800 has sufficient current to double wattage when impedance halves, so I wouldn't be particularly concerned on either speaker in terms of drive.
 
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Magic77

Member
Nov 28, 2022
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0
20
Lower impedance is a harder load for an amplifier, not easier. However, PMC don't seem to publish minimum impedance (impedance changes based on frequency).

Although saying that, your E-800 has sufficient current to double wattage when impedance halves, so I wouldn't be particularly concerned on either speaker in terms of drive.
Thanks, I understand that conventionally lower impedance is harder to drive although Accuphase quote linear power progression even into 2 ohm loads (200W class A at 2 ohms) so I am not too concerned about the impedance of the IB2 SE - maybe I misstated this part of the question. I was more concerned whether 50W was enough to drive the Fact 12? I was not concerned about this for the IB2 since its lower impedance means the amp delivers twice the power and it is more sensitive. Obviously there is the extra class AB power reserve which means it won't immediately clip if there are peaks above 50W but I would obviously prefer to keep within the class A region.

I'm assuming from the lack of other feedback that no-one is able to offer any comments on the relative sound of the two speakers or their relative sound within the PMC lineup?
 

twinkletoes

Well-known member
Nov 16, 2021
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970
For this sort of money I think this sort of question is best answered by a dealer that knows them through and through.

Having said this i did have some pmc 2023s on extended loan for while ( nothing like the fact facts) and found that my 70 watt naim 200dr barely enough to breath life into them and found they needed to be played loud which plays to there heritage in all honesty as studio speakers. Once the wick was tunered up they where nice but they certainly didn’t/wouldn’t sit in and around a class A stage for very long and the amp ran hot with these.

Take that for what it’s worth, I can’t comment on performance between the speakers mentioned

I have now gone the other way, high efficiency speakers and low power class A amps, maybe just maybe if you like the class A sound more maybe think about tannoy or klipsch heritage and legacy lines, heard they partner well with your amp, Tannoy are very plump sounding with a huge dose of clarity and air.
 

nopiano

Well-known member
Welcome to the forum.

I've not heard either of the PMCs you mention, but I had a very enjoyable afternoon listening to pre-Signature Fact .8 a few years ago, connected to about ten grands worth of Naim CD and amplifiers. The newest ones are shockingly priced, imo, especially in comparison to the likes of ATC and ProAc.

If you can get to hear ATCs, please make the effort. For less than the passive Signatures you can get superb Active ATCs which will out-perform them in my book. (I almost wrote something hyperbolic about blowing them away, but you get my point?)

Something like these are under £8000 a pair. https://atc.audio/hi-fi/loudspeakers/entry-series/scm40a/
 

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