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Small speakers required. Must be special.

AlmaataKZ

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Jan 7, 2009
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We are moving to a smaller flat and, for the second system, will have to get rid of the sub and swap the floorstanders for a set of bookshelves. the rest of the system is a Squeezebox touch (definately a keeper) and a Denon dm38 (may go if turning active speakers way).

I am looking for ideas on what speakers to get:

option one - passive

option two - active (with the Denon going to ebay)

In both options the speakers must be special i.e. have excellent sound and looks.

For passives currently considering:

Tannoy Autograph mini



Opera mini



Sonus faber toy



Kef xq20



ATC scm7 or 11 should be an obvious choice but I do not like their looks!

I have no idea about the actives.



I know of AVI ADMs, but what about others, oncluding pro active monitors? Do avi's have remote power on/off?

Any recommendations on both options? Budget 300-1500.
 

ID.

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Feb 22, 2010
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I'd have concerns about the Denon's abilities to do the speakers justice. I get the feeling that they'd want a bit more driving them.

That said, I haven't heard any of them. I've heard it with mentor menuets, and it sounded pretty good, but nowhere near what the Dali's sounded like even with the Marantz M-CR603. I know PMC DB1i sounded pretty poor on the end of an Onkyo A-S5VL and C-S5VL

Performancewise I'd think the AVIs would be superior.
 

Bodfish

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Jun 25, 2009
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Harbeth P3ESR should be on your list. Compact, easy to drive and wonderful sound.
 

AlmaataKZ

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Denon or actives are the only options. Agree that actives should perform better so very much interested in recommendations for more active monitors.
 

CnoEvil

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Aug 21, 2009
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Some nice speakers listed here, and I would add Spendor SA1.

I also agree that a good amp is a prerequisite.

The Kef XQs need very careful matching or they can sound too forward and bright - get it right and they will reward.

Cno
 

AlmaataKZ

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Jan 7, 2009
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CnoEvil said:
Some nice speakers listed here, and I would add Spendor SA1. I also agree that a good amp is a prerequisite. The Kef XQs need very careful matching or they can sound too forward and bright - get it right and they will reward. Cno
Thanks! The Spendors should be good but do not pass the (subjective) looks test - do not like white/coloured drivers.



Monitor audios and B&Ws went off the list for the same reason.
 

CnoEvil

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AlmaataKZ said:
Denon or actives are the only options. Agree that actives should perform better so very much interested in recommendations for more active monitors.
If that's the case, I think you should go active. If not out of budget - Dynaudio Focus 110A
 

CnoEvil

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AlmaataKZ said:
a candidate for active - Adam audio classic 3 active

no idea of price

Very interesting speaker....though does it meet your strict "woofer colour" criteria. ;)
 

AlmaataKZ

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no, it doesn't. I also do not like the tapered coners. they make the box look 'heavy/blunt'. but this speaker can be very good on sound... it probably does not have a remote like the ADMs...
 

chebby

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Jun 2, 2008
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For the same/similar money as the £1500 Harbeths (or £1300 SA1s) you could get the Spendor S3/5R² for £850 and have enough change for a step-up - from your DM38-DAB - to a Marantz M-CR603 (£450).

The S3/5R²s don't have the transparent/white cones of the SA1 and come in a range of (very nice) real wood veneers. (Cabinets made by Timberworx in Sheffield.)

They are a classic design that have evolved over 20+ years from the old BBC LS3/5A monitors and yet are an easy load at 8 ohms (6.2 ohms minimum) and 84db sensitivity.

They are also a sealed cabinet design (like the SA1s and Harbeth P3ESR) so will be flexible in room placement (even on shelves).

Not 'party' speakers, but very refined with excellent detail and imaging and enough bass for a room in a small flat as you described.

The S3/5R²s should make the most of at least another couple of system upgrades (assuming it's still in a small-medium room) and could become speakers for life. (Many Spendor owners are still happily using versions made 20 or 30 years ago.)
 

steve_1979

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Jul 14, 2010
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The Focal Solo 6 active monitors look very smart have had plenty of good reviews.

http://www.focalprofessional.com/en/sm6-line/solo6-be.php
 

WinterRacer

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Jan 14, 2009
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A vote here for the AVI ADM9.1s. They don't have remote power off, so may not meet all your requirements, but they do sound special (IMO)!

Connected to a Squeezebox Touch, they have replaced a ~ £8K passive system and I wouldn't consider going back to CD players and passive speakers now. From your system, I don't need to tell you the benefits of a good active system!
 

AlmaataKZ

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Jan 7, 2009
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chebby said:
For the same/similar money as the £1500 Harbeths (or £1300 SA1s) you could get the Spendor S3/5R² for £850 and have enough change for a step-up - from your DM38-DAB - to a Marantz M-CR603 (£450).

The S3/5R²s don't have the transparent/white cones of the SA1 and come in a range of (very nice) real wood veneers. (Cabinets made by Timberworx in Sheffield.)

They are a classic design that have evolved over 20+ years from the old BBC LS3/5A monitors and yet are an easy load at 8 ohms (6.2 ohms minimum) and 84db sensitivity.

They are also a sealed cabinet design (like the SA1s and Harbeth P3ESR) so will be flexible in room placement (even on shelves).

Not 'party' speakers, but very refined with excellent detail and imaging and enough bass for a room in a small flat as you described.

The S3/5R²s should make the most of at least another couple of system upgrades (assuming it's still in a small-medium room) and could become speakers for life. (Many Spendor owners are still happily using versions made 20 or 30 years ago.)
this spendor is good, too. thanks!

will the marantz play 24/96 alac?
 

TheHomeCinemaCentre

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Oct 1, 2008
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The Denon is not up to the job for these new speakers IMO. As much as they will all make a sound they are overkill for the system and you will not even start to unlock the potential from any of them. If the Denon must stay with passive speakers then Active is the route to go down. Even with a bog standard active you should get a better overall sound and for less money.

One thing I will recommend is a pair of PMC DB1i's ( passive ) but with the the PMC DS001. These small amps will attach to the back of the speaker in effect giving you a powered speaker. It will strecth your budget slightly but will be well worth it.
 

Craig M.

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Mar 20, 2008
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get the adm9s. a seriously neat solution and you might be suprised by the sound quality.
 

steve_1979

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Jul 14, 2010
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AlmaataKZ said:
these are interesting. cannot figure out if they have an active crossove ror not. the spec and the manual are silent on this.
I think the Focal Solo 6 have an active crossover. If you click on the 'Specifications' tab on the web page it says there's a 150W amplifier for the bass driver and a 100W amplifier for the tweeter.

http://www.focalprofessional.com/en/sm6-line/solo6-be.php
 

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