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Small vs Big Speakers for a 315 square feet living room, in an apartment?

spartacus71

Active member
Nov 27, 2020
5
2
25
Hi. So my dad is set out to buy new speakers. He's a "beginner audiophile" of sorts. He loves speakers, but doesn't know squat about them, and neither do I.

He has his eyes on Dali Oberon 5's. Since we're not exactly rich I'm trying to talk some sense into him and get him to buy Oberon 1's. My logic is since we're living in an apartment, and we can't turn it up to max volume, or half volume, really we can't play it loud at all, because of neighbors, so the quality difference between the small Oberon 1, and the big Oberon 5, is not noticeable at such low volume.

But like I said, I'm not an audiophile, I have zero knowledge about such things. I'm just going off of what sounds logical to me. So I'm asking the experts here, should we get the Oberon 5's? Or will the sound quality be the same in a living room that size and in an apartment with thin walls, so Oberon 1's will be the better choice?
 

nopiano

Well-known member
Feb 15, 2009
530
312
19,270
It’s a good question! Firstly, it’s a decent sized room, so floor standing speakers are feasible as long as you can fit them in a suitable spot - e.g. not shoved in the corners!
Secondly, the usual issue in an apartment is avoiding the bass disturbing neighbours. That may depend on whether you’re above ground floor, and on the construction and floor coverings.
Stand mount speakers don’t go as deep in the bass, but do need stands unless they’re designed for wall mounting. That’s adds to the cost.

Before we go further, the rest of the system might be relevant. And what speakers you currently use or have liked. Can you elaborate?
 
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millennia_one

Well-known member
Sep 1, 2014
559
245
11,270
Hi. So my dad is set out to buy new speakers. He's a "beginner audiophile" of sorts. He loves speakers, but doesn't know squat about them, and neither do I.

He has his eyes on Dali Oberon 5's. Since we're not exactly rich I'm trying to talk some sense into him and get him to buy Oberon 1's. My logic is since we're living in an apartment, and we can't turn it up to max volume, or half volume, really we can't play it loud at all, because of neighbors, so the quality difference between the small Oberon 1, and the big Oberon 5, is not noticeable at such low volume.

But like I said, I'm not an audiophile, I have zero knowledge about such things. I'm just going off of what sounds logical to me. So I'm asking the experts here, should we get the Oberon 5's? Or will the sound quality be the same in a living room that size and in an apartment with thin walls, so Oberon 1's will be the better choice?

Best advice i can give if you want to listen at low volumes is to get some really high efficiency speakers ie they wont need much of a turn on the volume knob before they start to work.

eg the klipsch rp 600/500/400m speakers there are 96/94db speakers. They are also a little lighter in the bass department and require boundaries to reenforce them a little more so should be good in an apartment setting.
 

newlash09

Well-known member
Aug 28, 2015
219
45
10,820
Hi. So my dad is set out to buy new speakers. He's a "beginner audiophile" of sorts. He loves speakers, but doesn't know squat about them, and neither do I.

He has his eyes on Dali Oberon 5's. Since we're not exactly rich I'm trying to talk some sense into him and get him to buy Oberon 1's. My logic is since we're living in an apartment, and we can't turn it up to max volume, or half volume, really we can't play it loud at all, because of neighbors, so the quality difference between the small Oberon 1, and the big Oberon 5, is not noticeable at such low volume.

But like I said, I'm not an audiophile, I have zero knowledge about such things. I'm just going off of what sounds logical to me. So I'm asking the experts here, should we get the Oberon 5's? Or will the sound quality be the same in a living room that size and in an apartment with thin walls, so Oberon 1's will be the better choice?
Hi :)

1. I would recommend floor standers as they have the same foot print as bookshelves, once we factor in the stands.

2. Floor standers are usually more efficient and easier to drive.

3. They have a larger scale for the same volume, so as with bookshelves we don't need very high volumes to fill the room.

4. They definitely do bass better, and main source of bass transmission to the neighbours is through the floor, provided the room has concrete walls. So placing a absorbent mat in the future under the speakers will reduce bass travel. So that need not be a consideration when deciding between floor standers and book shelves.

5. Floor standerd are more stable than bookshelves placed on stands.

All the best :)
 
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spartacus71

Active member
Nov 27, 2020
5
2
25
It’s a good question! Firstly, it’s a decent sized room, so floor standing speakers are feasible as long as you can fit them in a suitable spot - e.g. not shoved in the corners!
Secondly, the usual issue in an apartment is avoiding the bass disturbing neighbours. That may depend on whether you’re above ground floor, and on the construction and floor coverings.
Stand mount speakers don’t go as deep in the bass, but do need stands unless they’re designed for wall mounting. That’s adds to the cost.

Before we go further, the rest of the system might be relevant. And what speakers you currently use or have liked. Can you elaborate?
Thanks for the answer!

We running the speakers through Pioneer AV.Receiver VSX-924. The speakers are Wharfedale Diamond 9.5

We're on the third floor, with people below and above us.
 
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spartacus71

Active member
Nov 27, 2020
5
2
25
Hi :)

1. I would recommend floor standers as they have the same foot print as bookshelves, once we factor in the stands.

2. Floor standers are usually more efficient and easier to drive.

3. They have a larger scale for the same volume, so as with bookshelves we don't need very high volumes to fill the room.

4. They definitely do bass better, and main source of bass transmission to the neighbours is through the floor, provided the room has concrete walls. So placing a absorbent mat in the future under the speakers will reduce bass travel. So that need not be a consideration when deciding between floor standers and book shelves.

5. Floor standerd are more stable than bookshelves placed on stands.

All the best :)

Thanks you so much! We learned a lot in a short time.
 
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spartacus71

Active member
Nov 27, 2020
5
2
25
Best advice i can give if you want to listen at low volumes is to get some really high efficiency speakers ie they wont need much of a turn on the volume knob before they start to work.

eg the klipsch rp 600/500/400m speakers there are 96/94db speakers. They are also a little lighter in the bass department and require boundaries to reenforce them a little more so should be good in an apartment setting.

Thank you! Will definitely check those out!
 

newlash09

Well-known member
Aug 28, 2015
219
45
10,820
Thank you! Will definitely check those out!
Now that we know that you are using a pioneer AVR. I wouldnt recommend the klipsch speakers . Klipsch speakers though of high efficiency can easily be provoked into sounding bright. And the pioneer lsx51 that I've heard at my friends place, definitely sounded brighter to my ears, than my marantz AVR. So I suspect this pairing can end up sounding too bright.
 
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newlash09

Well-known member
Aug 28, 2015
219
45
10,820
By any chance spartacus, did your father have a listen to the oberion 5's and liked them.

However, if that hasn't been done, I would advise to also add the qacoustics concept 40's into the audtion list. When i was upgrading from qacoustics q7000i home theater package in 2013. I had auditioned the dali Zensor 7's vs the concept 40's, and preferred the concept 40's. They retailed for 1000 GBP, and i still considered them crazy good for the price. At the present pricing of 699 GBP they are crazy value i would say.

Another curved ball again :D

I see that the qacoustics q7000i 5.1 sat + sub package has been reduced to 599GBP on some sites. So if you are willing to look at a 5.1 surround system, then are crazy value again :D

I bought mine again at 1000 GBP, and still use them as my surround speakers. All the best :)
 
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millennia_one

Well-known member
Sep 1, 2014
559
245
11,270
Now that we know that you are using a pioneer AVR. I wouldnt recommend the klipsch speakers . Klipsch speakers though of high efficiency can easily be provoked into sounding bright. And the pioneer lsx51 that I've heard at my friends place, definitely sounded brighter to my ears, than my marantz AVR. So I suspect this pairing can end up sounding too bright.

shouldn't be problem with the EQ, it will EQ out any shrillness that there may be. In my experience of my 2021 its was an edge of seat listen but far from shrill, detailed yes but perhaps more than you like.

Id say give the klipsch a chance and certainly should be on the audition list at this price.
 

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