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Speakers upgrade - no longer needed, thanks

insider9

Well-known member
Sep 20, 2016
854
399
5,270
Hi, I'm looking for some advice, please. As always, not the shortest of posts. I'd very much rather to give all the info needed. Current setup in my signature.

Budget circa £600 (either new or used) would stretch for the right speakers. Standmounts are preferred due to small listening room. Small floorstanders could also do the trick. Can give them up to 70cm breathing space at the back but not much to the sides.

Last 3 standmount speakers in use (from current) and what I liked and disliked about them:

Monitor Audio RX2 / Pros: Neutral, good scale and dynamics, decent detail, natural size of soundstage, go deep for a standmount / Cons: Lack attack, poor tweeter integration, slow especially in bass

Roksan K2 TR5 / Pros: Fast, agile, precise, superb detail in upper midrange and treble, emotional delivery of vocals, great sounding horns, engaing soundstage, seemless driver integration, punchy bass / Cons: Not neutral (vocals and solo instruments too forward), midrange slightly compressed with not enough detail, wish bass could go lower

EB Acoustics EB2 / Pros: Neutral, transparent, very detailed across the board, natural bass / Cons: Lacked engagement (not exactly sure why, perhaps a mixture of some lack of attack and soundstage that felt on the smaller side), too polite sounding, too honest

I'm listening to just about any type of music that uses real instruments, so not much electronics. Particularly enjoy jazz, folk, country, rock and metal. With every week appreciate classical more.

What's important from my next speakers? In fairness most of what's in pros of Roksans that I adored even with all their flaws. Not sure if what I want to achieve is possible without ribbon tweeters. Quad S-2 are a possibility but spoken to Fanthorpes and they don't have a pair for a demo... Apparently Quad wants the 'S' range demoed with S-1 and S-4. Not sure what to make of that.

I know on a used market £600 can get a great pair of speakers so would be looking a few steps up. Without possibility to demo it makes it hard though.

I've seen some Apogee ribbon hybrids that intrest me but never heard them and not sure about potential risks of buying 20 year old speakers. Out of others GX range from Monitor Audio would considered but feel that they'd be lacking attack also. Noticed this is a rather MA thing (only ever heard bronze, silvers and old golds). PMC interest me with their transmission line but not heard and worried that the tweeter may not be what I'm after. Also looked at Dali Ikon 2 that may give me what I want...

Any help very much appreciated, so thank you in advance :)
 

nopiano

Well-known member
Feb 15, 2009
611
380
19,270
It's almost impossible to advise given what you've disliked! As you observe, there are many very fine used speakers at that price, but as to whether they'd be remotely to your taste is very hard to say.

However, I'd have to suggest you hear some KEF LS50, widely sold new, and often on eBay hardly used or ex demo. Ditto Harbeths, much harder to find, even new, but extremely neutral and not demanding to drive. The smallest one are almost tiny. Look at the website, and their forum, for some insights.

ATC, ProAc and PMC are all semi-studio, in that their roots are in that area, and each has some great models in the range. Older ones are quite often available and would be lowish risk to buy unheard, due to steady demand. Some used emporia let you demo, but obviously tend to cost a bit more than a private sale with no come back

I'd suggest you worry less about ribbons. And Apogees will quite possibly destroy your amp, so give them a miss ( shocking impedance curve). If you must have a ribbon, every Elac ribbon I've heard sounded great, and they did a lovely tall column model a few years ago, reviewed in Gramophone mag. Something like model 247.

Hope that helps a bit!
 

Al ears

Moderator
insider9 said:
Hi, I'm looking for some advice, please. As always, not the shortest of posts. I'd very much rather to give all the info needed. Current setup in my signature.

Budget circa £600 (either new or used) would stretch for the right speakers. Standmounts are preferred due to small listening room. Small floorstanders could also do the trick. Can give them up to 70cm breathing space at the back but not much to the sides.

Last 3 standmount speakers in use (from current) and what I liked and disliked about them:

Monitor Audio RX2 / Pros: Neutral, good scale and dynamics, decent detail, natural size of soundstage, go deep for a standmount / Cons: Lack attack, poor tweeter integration, slow especially in bass

Roksan K2 TR5 / Pros: Fast, agile, precise, superb detail in upper midrange and treble, emotional delivery of vocals, great sounding horns, engaing soundstage, seemless driver integration, punchy bass / Cons: Not neutral (vocals and solo instruments too forward), midrange slightly compressed with not enough detail, wish bass could go lower

EB Acoustics EB2 / Pros: Neutral, transparent, very detailed across the board, natural bass / Cons: Lacked engagement (not exactly sure why, perhaps a mixture of some lack of attack and soundstage that felt on the smaller side), too polite sounding, too honest

I'm listening to just about any type of music that uses real instruments, so not much electronics. Particularly enjoy jazz, folk, country, rock and metal. With every week appreciate classical more.

What's important from my next speakers? In fairness most of what's in pros of Roksans that I adored even with all their flaws. Not sure if what I want to achieve is possible without ribbon tweeters. Quad S-2 are a possibility but spoken to Fanthorpes and they don't have a pair for a demo... Apparently Quad wants the 'S' range demoed with S-1 and S-4. Not sure what to make of that.

I know on a used market £600 can get a great pair of speakers so would be looking a few steps up. Without possibility to demo it makes it hard though.

I've seen some Apogee ribbon hybrids that intrest me but never heard them and not sure about potential risks of buying 20 year old speakers. Out of others GX range from Monitor Audio would considered but feel that they'd be lacking attack also. Noticed this is a rather MA thing (only ever heard bronze, silvers and old golds). PMC interest me with their transmission line but not heard and worried that the tweeter may not be what I'm after. Also looked at Dali Ikon 2 that may give me what I want...

Any help very much appreciated, so thank you in advance :)
Do you still have my email address? If so please contact me as I seem to have lost yours. May be able to help with speakers.
 

MajorFubar

New member
Mar 3, 2010
690
3
0
At times I think you're searching for the impossible. Partly because I don't think you truly know what you're really searching for. But compared to some other people who expect the answer to be handed to them on a plate, you've proved that you're very willing to get off your backside and go listen to some speakers, and that's 3/4s of the battle. You're a sound 100% top bloke and while I can't help you, I hope you find what you're searching for.
 

insider9

Well-known member
Sep 20, 2016
854
399
5,270
nopiano said:
It's almost impossible to advise given what you've disliked! As you observe, there are many very fine used speakers at that price, but as to whether they'd be remotely to your taste is very hard to say.

However, I'd have to suggest you hear some KEF LS50, widely sold new, and often on eBay hardly used or ex demo. Ditto Harbeths, much harder to find, even new, but extremely neutral and not demanding to drive. The smallest one are almost tiny. Look at the website, and their forum, for some insights.

ATC, ProAc and PMC are all semi-studio, in that their roots are in that area, and each has some great models in the range. Older ones are quite often available and would be lowish risk to buy unheard, due to steady demand. Some used emporia let you demo, but obviously tend to cost a bit more than a private sale with no come back

I'd suggest you worry less about ribbons. And Apogees will quite possibly destroy your amp, so give them a miss ( shocking impedance curve). If you must have a ribbon, every Elac ribbon I've heard sounded great, and they did a lovely tall column model a few years ago, reviewed in Gramophone mag. Something like model 247.

Hope that helps a bit!
I appreciate that, Nopiano. I'm sure many who read my OP laughed quite hard. I belive that the best way to learn is to admit ignorance :) It's all a learning curve and a steep one. Anyway, Apogees are off the list.

Would it be a wiser decision to keep Monitor Audios for a while? I don't dislike them, only had them 2 days. They're just much different to Roksans. Not really suited to heavier climates but do other things quite well. I actually listen to two albums since writing the OP and disagree with my initial assesment of slow bass. It's deeper than I'm used to, well controlled but not slow.
 

seemorebtts

Well-known member
Feb 2, 2013
66
0
18,540
Your speakers are pretty good.i think you might have to up your budget to beat them.i would recommend the dynaudio's emit but I don't think it's what your after.have you seen the audiovector ar 1.mite be worth a look at £600 very small tho.i would go for the ATC 11 £1200 these might live up to your expectations.
 

insider9

Well-known member
Sep 20, 2016
854
399
5,270
MajorFubar said:
At times I think you're searching for the impossible. Partly because I don't think you truly know what you're really searching for. But compared to some other people who expect the answer to be handed to them on a plate, you've proved that you're very willing to get off your backside and go listen to some speakers, and that's 3/4s of the battle. You're a sound 100% top bloke and while I can't help you, I hope you find what you're searching for.
Have you been speaking to my wife? :) You're absolutely right. I know some of it but not sure if it makes sense overall. Way too inexperienced. After all, if I already heard what I was after wouldn't it be already top of my list. Thanks for kind and wise words!
 

insider9

Well-known member
Sep 20, 2016
854
399
5,270
seemorebtts said:
Your speakers are pretty good.i think you might have to up your budget to beat them.i would recommend the dynaudio's emit but I don't think it's what your after.have you seen the audiovector ar 1.mite be worth a look at £600 very small tho.i would go for the ATC 11 £1200 these might live up to your expectations.
ATC SCM7 would be as far I'd be willing to stretch the budget if going new. I'm sure second hadn 11's can be had for about £800 but that's the very top of my budget at the minute. Thanks for suggesting Audiovector, never heard of them.
 

MajorFubar

New member
Mar 3, 2010
690
3
0
insider9 said:
Have you been speaking to my wife? :) You're absolutely right. I know some of it but not sure if it makes sense overall. Way too inexperienced. After all, if I already heard what I was after wouldn't it be already top of my list. Thanks for kind and wise words!
If I could at all dare to be just a little critical, I of course have no idea how long you generally keep your hifi components, but certainly starting with my EB2s, I don't think you give yourself nearly half enough time to appreciate the qualities your new speakers are bringing to the table before you decide you don't like them. The negative aspects you are quick to latch on to are a result of you being overwhelmed by how different new speakers sound compared to the speakers you are acclimatised to, the Roksan K2s. For the first few months of owning the EB2s I was very much on a voyage of discovery, I still am with the AVIs, but you don't give new speakers time to leave the dock.

Doesn't stop me from genuinely wshing you the best of luck in finding the sound you want, but I think it could a be a longish haul.
 

insider9

Well-known member
Sep 20, 2016
854
399
5,270
MajorFubar said:
insider9 said:
Have you been speaking to my wife? :) You're absolutely right. I know some of it but not sure if it makes sense overall. Way too inexperienced. After all, if I already heard what I was after wouldn't it be already top of my list. Thanks for kind and wise words!
If I could at all dare to be just a little critical, I of course have no idea how long you generally keep your hifi components, but certainly starting with my EB2s, I don't think you give yourself nearly half enough time to appreciate the qualities your new speakers are bringing to the table before you decide you don't like them. The negative aspects you are quick to latch on to are a result of you being overwhelmed by how different new speakers sound compared to the speakers you are acclimatised to, the Roksan K2s. For the first few months of owning the EB2s I was very much on a voyage of discovery, I still am with the AVIs, but you don't give new speakers time to leave the dock.

Doesn't stop me from genuinely wshing you the best of luck in finding the sound you want, but I think it could a be a longish haul.
You're right again, Major. I appreciate your honesty and agree with everything you said. It's what Nopiano picked up on also. I do genuinely appreciate the advice.

Looks like I'll keep MA for the time being, unless Al Ears has a surprise in stock :)

Thank you!!!
 

DougK

Well-known member
Dec 8, 2013
1,012
652
20,070
I went through quite a few MA's: BX2, BX5 and finally RX2. The RX2's stayed until I heard PMC DB1's at which point the RX2's were kindly shown the door. My audition was simple, RX2 vs DB1 connected to A/B speaker outputs on my amp, but I forgot which way round I had connected them. I played with them for about an hour, switching between outputs until I thought I had found the winner... the RX2's were keepers... that was until I walked across the room to discover that it was actually the DB1's playing. End of story and end of search *smile*
 

insider9

Well-known member
Sep 20, 2016
854
399
5,270
DougK said:
I went through quite a few MA's: BX2, BX5 and finally RX2. The RX2's stayed until I heard PMC DB1's at which point the RX2's were kindly shown the door. My audition was simple, RX2 vs DB1 connected to A/B speaker outputs on my amp, but I forgot which way round I had connected them. I played with them for about an hour, switching between outputs until I thought I had found the winner... the RX2's were keepers... that was until I walked across the room to discover that it was actually the DB1's playing. End of story and end of search *smile*
I also had BX5 and quite enjoyed them. Glad you found what you're looking for.
 

MajorFubar

New member
Mar 3, 2010
690
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0
If you ever find yourself round here again you know you're very welcome to pop round and have a listen to the AVis, with and without sub, and judge whether this is an avenue you might want to venture down as an alternative to a conventional set-up. I don't believe they are the New Messiah or The One True Way, but they are very very good, and they could be exactly what you're wanting. But, I wager they will definitely sound different to what you're currently used to.
 

insider9

Well-known member
Sep 20, 2016
854
399
5,270
MajorFubar said:
If you ever find yourself round here again you know you're very welcome to pop round and have a listen to the AVis, with and without sub, and judge whether this is an avenue you might want to venture down as an alternative to a conventional set-up. I don't believe they are the New Messiah or The One True Way, but they are very very good, and they could be exactly what you're wanting. But, I wager they will definitely sound different to what you're currently used to.
That's very kind, thank you, Major. I'm sure I'd confuse myself even more, right now. At least my amp is the one thing I wouldn't dream of replacing.

Likewise if you're driving down M1 feel free to pop in even if just for a cuppa.
 
Nov 22, 2014
26
0
0
Look i don’t know you at all, but just from reading this thread alone i can see what ever speaker you have, you would sooner or later find something to dislike about them, instead of reminding yourself about the things you do like about them, the trouble is, and same can be said for lots of things, is once that honeymoon period is over, the sparkle has gone, but the truth is it’s all in your head, you brain has just got used to it being the norm, and does not get quite excited by it anymore, so people tend to think i need new again, its a vicious circle, and expensive if you let it get the better of you. Go get yourself the best pair of speakers that a £100 can buy, set them up and listen to them for a week, in the same way as you did when you got your latest speakers, playing you favourite tunes for hours on end, first you will be impressed by good they sound for the money, and be totally blown away, but after a week you brain will have adjusted to the sound, and then switch your speakers again, then you will appreciate them all over again ;)
 

seemorebtts

Well-known member
Feb 2, 2013
66
0
18,540
Simon Cunvin said:
Look i don’t know you at all, but just from reading this thread alone i can see what ever speaker you have, you would sooner or later find something to dislike about them, instead of reminding yourself about the things you do like about them, the trouble is, and same can be said for lots of things, is once that honeymoon period is over, the sparkle has gone, but the truth is it’s all in your head, you brain has just got used to it being the norm, and does not get quite excited by it anymore, so people tend to think i need new again, its a vicious circle, and expensive if you let it get the better of you.
 
Go get yourself the best pair of speakers that a £100 can buy, set them up and listen to them for a week, in the same way as you did when you got your latest speakers, playing you favourite tunes for hours on end, first you will be impressed by good they sound for the money, and be totally blown away, but after a week you brain will have adjusted to the sound, and then switch your speakers again, then you will appreciate them all over again ;)
 

 
I pick holes in my stereo all the time it's just something I live with.its like an affliction.my be I need to see a doctor. :-(
 

insider9

Well-known member
Sep 20, 2016
854
399
5,270
Thank you All! Your comments are fair and I appreciate them.

Sometimes what you already know doesn't sink in until you hear it from others. At the same time, it might just be that the next pair is perfect ;)

One last attempt and I'm done either way. But more on that in a bit.
 

drummerman

New member
Jan 18, 2008
540
1
0
I am going to confuse you more but I have a feeling that a pair of Regas could give you what you're looking for.
 

insider9

Well-known member
Sep 20, 2016
854
399
5,270
drummerman said:
I am going to confuse you more but I have a feeling that a pair of Regas could give you what you're looking for.
Floorstanders? They'd not have much room to breathe on the sides. I've not heard anything of note about Rega standmounts.
 

drummerman

New member
Jan 18, 2008
540
1
0
insider9 said:
drummerman said:
I am going to confuse you more but I have a feeling that a pair of Regas could give you what you're looking for.
Floorstanders? They'd not have much room to breathe on the sides. I've not heard anything of note about Rega standmounts.
Well, you could well be missing out then :)
 

insider9

Well-known member
Sep 20, 2016
854
399
5,270
drummerman said:
insider9 said:
drummerman said:
I am going to confuse you more but I have a feeling that a pair of Regas could give you what you're looking for.
Floorstanders? They'd not have much room to breathe on the sides. I've not heard anything of note about Rega standmounts.
Well, you could well be missing out then :)
Hehe :)

You must take sugar with your tea as you're an expert at stirring ;)
 

drummerman

New member
Jan 18, 2008
540
1
0
insider9 said:
drummerman said:
insider9 said:
drummerman said:
I am going to confuse you more but I have a feeling that a pair of Regas could give you what you're looking for.
Floorstanders? They'd not have much room to breathe on the sides. I've not heard anything of note about Rega standmounts.
Well, you could well be missing out then :)
Hehe :)

You must take sugar with your tea as you're an expert at stirring ;)
:)

I've used their speakers on many occasions in the past. Whilst having no experience with the latest examples they are music makers foremost and hifi speakers thereafter.

I won't bore you with subjective small talk but again I have a feeling you are doing yourself a disservice by dismissing them.

Chebby owned a pair of original R3's, he may chime in.

As a side note, the R/S/X 3's can be positioned so that the woofer is facing in or outwards. - Front ported too.

I also think the new RX1 looks very smart if it has to be standmount.

Have fun and I hope you find something you can life with for some time.
 

insider9

Well-known member
Sep 20, 2016
854
399
5,270
drummerman said:
insider9 said:
drummerman said:
insider9 said:
drummerman said:
I am going to confuse you more but I have a feeling that a pair of Regas could give you what you're looking for.
Floorstanders? They'd not have much room to breathe on the sides. I've not heard anything of note about Rega standmounts.
Well, you could well be missing out then :)
Hehe :)

You must take sugar with your tea as you're an expert at stirring ;)
:)

I've used their speakers on many occasions in the past. Whilst having no experience with the latest examples they are music makers foremost and hifi speakers thereafter.

I won't bore you with subjective small talk but again I have a feeling you are doing yourself a disservice by dismissing them.

Chebby owned a pair of original R3's, he may chime in.

As a side note, the R/S/X 3's can be positioned so that the woofer is facing in or outwards. - Front ported too.

I also think the new RX1 looks very smart if it has to be standmount.

Have fun and I hope you find something you can life with for some time.
I'll be looking our for a pair. Don't mind getting them just to even try as long as the price is right. Thanks again
 

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