Question Suggestions for an active speaker please.

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Gray

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PMC make magic speakers but they are fast becoming out of reach for the normal hifi enthusiast.
They truly are and that's a shame.
I was reading about the new Wharfedale range - the promising new cone material, bracing methods etc.......then noted that the range started at £200.
OK, Chinese made, you get what you pay for, we know all that.
But Wharfedale aren't rubbish and that's the sort of value that makes hi-fi accessible to many more people.
(They could surely clean up with a good, low priced active).
 
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atticus

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Nov 18, 2011
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AVi for me. The DM10’s with the Sub tick all my boxes. I have the DM5’s hooked up to the TV (you‘ll need a pre-amp). I’d love to tell you what the ADM40’s sound like with the upgraded tweeters but my father has had them on permanent loan for several years.

Keep your eyes peeled on ebay!
 
AVi for me. The DM10’s with the Sub tick all my boxes. I have the DM5’s hooked up to the TV (you‘ll need a pre-amp). I’d love to tell you what the ADM40’s sound like with the upgraded tweeters but my father has had them on permanent loan for several years.

Keep your eyes peeled on ebay!
there isn't much point in responding to a thread that is nearly a year old....
 

plastic penguin

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Apr 28, 2008
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there isn't much point in responding to a thread that is nearly a year old....
I'd forgotten all about this thread.

I've gone a bit cold on actives as my current passive set-up does so many things so well.

Every time I think of upgrades I keep coming back to Harbeth. They work beautifully with the Leema. Probably the C7 es-3 seem to be favourites at the moment, assuming I can get them to work in our room. I also wouldn't rule out the P3s with a sub, just to give me that extra dynamism that was missing when I had them on home demo.

Nothing has been ruled out, except for actives, but I keep thinking about the Harbeths.
 
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RoA

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Feb 11, 2021
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Ditto. I just sold both my active systems and returned to (Class A/B/G amplification) separates re-discovering enjoying music for other than technical excellence.

In all fairness, it could just be that I don't get on with class D in it's current state. They certainly have a 'footprint' regardless of what certain reviews say.
 

abacus

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Sep 24, 2008
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Most actives by their very nature are designed to produce the input signal as accurate as possible, unfortunately this means that if the recording is bad, it sounds bad, (This is why they are great with computers as there is plenty of free software out there to remaster the sound) whereas most passives are engineered to give a characteristic sound that they believe their customers will like. (This is because until you go high end compromises have to be made for a certain price point)

Regarding amplification, if run within their limits (Into a resistive load) there will be no difference in the sound (No matter what class of amplification is used (Early Class Ds where bad as with anything new, however they have been out that long there is no longer a difference) however when you connect a pair of speakers to the amp (Which are not just resistive) then how the amp reacts with the speaker determines its sound, (Unless you can afford to go high end when there are no compromises in the power supply and output stage so there will be no change in sound no matter what speaker you connect to it) this is why one amp night sound better then another with one set of speakers, but worse than the other amp with a different set of speakers.

Bill
 
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DougK

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Dec 8, 2013
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Every time I think of upgrades I keep coming back to Harbeth. They work beautifully with the Leema. Probably the C7 es-3 seem to be favourites at the moment, assuming I can get them to work in our room. I also wouldn't rule out the P3s with a sub, just to give me that extra dynamism that was missing when I had them on home demo.
The C7 does look interesting PP.

Maybe it's due to placement but my P3's definitely don't need a sub, I find the bass is just right for me. Gray has heard them too so he may be able to give a more objective opinion.
 

plastic penguin

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The C7 does look interesting PP.

Maybe it's due to placement but my P3's definitely don't need a sub, I find the bass is just right for me. Gray has heard them too so he may be able to give a more objective opinion.
Bear in mind, Doug, that is in direct comparison to the PMCs which has bigger drivers and cabinets. The P3s, without a sub just seemed to lack a little low end dynamics.
 

plastic penguin

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Ditto. I just sold both my active systems and returned to (Class A/B/G amplification) separates re-discovering enjoying music for other than technical excellence.

In all fairness, it could just be that I don't get on with class D in it's current state. They certainly have a 'footprint' regardless of what certain reviews say.
Hi DM

I haven't heard any actives, so I could be wrong. But from what I've read on forums and mags they do major in detail. That's not really what I'm after. I don't want to hear beads of sweat hitting the mic, rather have a system that's more organic/natural and very musical. Can't be doing with sitting constantly analyzing every darn track. If I am wrong about actives not being organic enough I apologise to any owners.
 
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skinnypuppy71

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Aug 10, 2021
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Love my pmc twenty 21's and I believe the rrp when I purchased my high gloss black pair was £1475....I think the gloss finish had a £100 premium over the standard wood finishes....so £1375 rrp originally.
....and I was never really impressed by the first iteration of the kef ls50 's or the avi dm10's..for that matter . I think you will have to climb a bit further up the active speakers ladder to match a good amp/pmc combo. Something from the two two range or atc scm19 actives would be where I'd start...if or when I decide to travel this road.
 
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RoA

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Feb 11, 2021
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Hi DM

I haven't heard any actives, so I could be wrong. But from what I've read on forums and mags they do major in detail. That's not really what I'm after. I don't want to hear beads of sweat hitting the mic, rather have a system that's more organic/natural and very musical. Can't be doing with sitting constantly analyzing every darn track. If I am wrong about actives not being organic enough I apologise to any owners.
I can't speak for every active system but the two I owned were excellent in different ways. But, as you say, they certainly favored 'technical excellence' over musicality, at least in certain aspects.

Returning to (non Class D) passive systems brought 'musicality' back to listening.
 
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Gray

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Maybe it's due to placement but my P3's definitely don't need a sub, I find the bass is just right for me. Gray has heard them too so he may be able to give a more objective opinion.
The wall mount may well have an influence Doug, but I can confirm that your P3s seemed no more in need of a sub than my own PMC 20.21 (though that may not be the best comparison for you PP, as the 20 was your least favourite PMC range if I recall correctly).

I think a relevant point is that I listened to Doug's speakers at what I describe as a realistic volume level (and by that I don't mean excessively loud).
But I do remember you mentioning on the Wam, that at one point during your tests, you had to raise your voice to converse with Lady Penguin. That surprised me.
You see, there's just no way that conversation would be possible in the same room as music at my normal listening level.
I could be wrong, but I think the difference in (usual) listening levels, may go some way to explaining why you think the P3s need a sub, whereas Doug and I don't.
Of course, smaller speakers will always have bass limitations. There's no doubt that a sub would (partially) act like an amp's loudness contour to help low level listening on most small speakers.

I do appreciate the benefit of bass (in my work, I've heard bass bin stacks that make domestic subs sound like transistor radios).
But my neighbours would be sure that my small speakers don't need a sub ;).
 
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plastic penguin

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The wall mount may well have an influence Doug, but I can confirm that your P3s seemed no more in need of a sub than my own PMC 20.21 (though that may not be the best comparison for you PP, as the 20 was your least favourite PMC range if I recall correctly).

I think a relevant point is that I listened to Doug's speakers at what I describe as a realistic volume level (and by that I don't mean excessively loud).
But I do remember you mentioning on the Wam, that at one point during your tests, you had to raise your voice to converse with Lady Penguin. That surprised me.
You see, there's just no way that conversation would be possible in the same room as music at my normal listening level.
I could be wrong, but I think the difference in (usual) listening levels, may go some way to explaining why you think the P3s need a sub, whereas Doug and I don't.
Of course, smaller speakers will always have bass limitations. There's no doubt that a sub would (partially) act like an amp's loudness contour to help low level listening on most small speakers.

I do appreciate the benefit of bass (in my work, I've heard bass bin stacks that make domestic subs sound like transistor radios).
But my neighbours would be sure that my small speakers don't need a sub ;).
I've never demoed any of the PMC Twenty with my kit. I have heard the 23s on two separate occasions, once powered by a Rega Elicit-R and once with a Yamaha receiver. They sounded fine but I had nothing to directly compare to them with as all my stuff was indoors.

As regards about Mrs. P having to raise her voice, think you are talking about the Wharfedale 80th Anniversary Dentons I purchased from the Wam. She and my daughter thought, on some genres, especially with female voices, sounded slightly shrill. I actually posted the review on here around the same time.

Found.

The Harbeth P3s were nicely composed across all frequencies.
 
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