Upgrade Downsizing Advice Please

AndrewFG

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Nov 2, 2008
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Hi,

I presently have two audio systems in my living room; one is an old stereo hifi set, and the other an a/v surround set. I think probably such a duplication is a waste of space, and so I am looking upgrade the a/v system to an audio quality level whereby I could eliminate the hifi set. And therefore I would welcome advice about how to proceed. The systems are as follows:

HiFi

Musical Fidelity P270-2 amp (about 20 y/o)

B&W 802 speakers (oiriginal type, also about 20 y/o)

Logitech / Squeezebox "Transporter" music streamer / dac; with all music (ALAC format) on PC hard disk
 

AndrewFG

New member
Nov 2, 2008
44
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Hi,

I presently have two audio systems in my living room; one is an old stereo hifi set, and the other an a/v surround set. I think probably such a duplication is a waste of space, and so I am looking upgrade the a/v system to an audio quality level whereby I could eliminate the hifi set. And therefore I would welcome advice about how to proceed. The systems are as follows:

HiFi: Musical Fidelity P270-2 amp (about 20 y/o); B&W 802 speakers (oiriginal type, also about 20 y/o); Logitech / Squeezebox "Transporter" music streamer / dac; music (ALAC format) on PC hard disk

A/V: Oppo BDP-83 Blu-Ray; Sony DA2400ES receiver; KEF KHT3005 series 2 5.1ch with subwoofer; (Sony 40" panel)

I am thinking that the KEFs are capable of rendering better sound than the Sony receiver can deliver. So my hypothesis is to upgrade the Sony. However I don't know if such a rig can get close to the 20 y/o P270 and B&W 802 combo ??

Any thoughts? Or suggestions?
 

Paul.

Well-known member
Nov 26, 2010
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18,970
Why not upgrade the AV amp to a 9.1 affair. This will allow you to biamp your 802 speakers then keep your existing KEF eggs and have a 7.1 setup. You would probably need a pretty special AV amp to do those speakers justice though! No idea how your speakers would sound together with the kefs though.

Do you have a budget in mind?
 

AndrewFG

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Nov 2, 2008
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Thanks for the idea. But my intention was to reduce the amount of equipment in the living room rather than increase it (!?). My hypothesis is that the B&W's and the P270 would go, and I would keep the KEFs and upgrade the receiver.
 

Paul.

Well-known member
Nov 26, 2010
745
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Oh you would have less boxes, just not less speakers :)

To be frank, I think the 3005 setup is going to be a little disappointing for music compared to what you are used to, no matter how good the AV amp. My Dad has the 3005 speakers and an Onkyo 808 AV amp, I have the much older Onkyo 805 with budget Monitor Audio Bronze floorstanders and my setup wipes the floor with his for music.

If you sell the Sony amp, the 802's, the Hifi amp, possible the Dac (you can hook the squeezbox directly up to the Dac in your Av amp) you could consider selling two of your eggs and replacing them with some small bookshelf speakers? This would reduce the size and boxcount significantly but still keep it musical?
 

AndrewFG

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Nov 2, 2008
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Hmmm. Interesting.

To be clear, I guess your suggestion is to replace the L/F and R/F eggs, but keep the C/F, L/B, R/B eggs and the sub?

Would this work? I wonder in particular about balancing and compatibility between the front three speakers.

Any suggestions on speakers that would merge in smoothly with the existing C/F, L/B, R/B eggs and the sub?
 

Paul.

Well-known member
Nov 26, 2010
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Yep, front left and right as bookshelves, then centre and surrounds as eggs.

I would assume you would need to stick to KEF speakers for your bookshelves, but I couldn't answer that I'm afraid. There was a few forum members using eggs as surrounds and full size speakers as fronts, it may be worth starting a new thread to grab their attention?
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
I would suggest keeping the front three speakers from the same range, it will give you a much better sound stage. If you like the KEF sound, I would suggest the R100 or R300 (dependant on budget) with the R200C. I've got this setup and they are excellent with music, especially if you could partner them with a better AVR.
 

AndrewFG

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Nov 2, 2008
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Hmmm. The conversation seems to be going in a different direction than I had expected. My hypothesis was to keep the KEF3005s and upgrade the Sony receiver in order to get the best possible sound from the KEFs (albeit not getting up to the 802's standard). But you guys seem to be proposing another hypothesis to keep the Sony and upgrade the KEFs. Does anyone have any suggestions on my hypothesis?
 

davejberry

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Mar 29, 2009
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have you tried your hifi speakers with the Sony in pure stereo mode, do they sound better, worse or just different to the older amp to your ears?

lose the DAC, put streamer straight into sony amp and have a listen, i bet this sounds better than music thru the KEFs
 

drichardb

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Dec 13, 2010
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+1 Keep the B&W's. I replaced my Logitech Z5500's front and center channels with B&W 600 series speakers and the improvement was vast. So I would expect dropping your 802's into the KEF system should shake things up a tad 8)

Personally I would LOVE to have a set of 802's (20yr old or brand new I wouldnt care) so I urge you not to cast them aside without giving them a chance in your home cinema setup.

As has already been suggested, ditch the 2 amps and replace with a nice beefy av receiver.
 

Chewy

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Feb 10, 2010
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drichardb said:
+1 Keep the B&W's. I replaced my Logitech Z5500's front and center channels with B&W 600 series speakers and the improvement was vast. So I would expect dropping your 802's into the KEF system should shake things up a tad 8)

Personally I would LOVE to have a set of 802's (20yr old or brand new I wouldnt care) so I urge you not to cast them aside without giving them a chance in your home cinema setup.

As has already been suggested, ditch the 2 amps and replace with a nice beefy av receiver.

+1 on that - keep the 802's if you can, going from those to the KEF's would be like trading in a Ferrari for a Ford Fiesta (no offence Fiesta owners out there - my wife has one!).

You would be better to try and find a centre channel speaker (of a simialr age) to match your 802's (HTM1 is it?), and then utilise some of your KEF's as surrounds, or indeed trade the KEF's in for some newer B & W surounds in the hope they have a voicing more similar to your 802's.

I would also be reluctant to lose the MF amp as a modern day reciever will beunlikely to be able to drive the 802's as well as it can - I would use the MF to continue to drive the FL and FR and let a home cinema reciever drive the other channels, though I appreciate that you are looking to reduce the number of boxes - it is an unfortunate fact that (generally) in hi-fi and home cinema, less is not more.

Failing that if you are determined to keep the KEF's and get rid of the (high quality) stereo set-up, then sell them along with your Sony reciever and you should have a very good wedge of cash to buy a decent reciever, Pioneer LX-85 and above?
 

AndrewFG

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Nov 2, 2008
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Paul Hobbs said:
Why not upgrade the AV amp to a 9.1 affair. This will allow you to biamp your 802 speakers then keep your existing KEF eggs and have a 7.1 setup.

A technical question: the KEF set has a powered sub-woofer too. Now if I would follow your advice, and use the 802's as fronts, then I assume they would be more than good enough to handle the bass. As you say, the 802's can be biamped, so my question is whether there are 9.1 receivers out there that can be programmed so that the 802's mid+top parts are fed from two amp circuits getting the L/F and R/F channels, and the two bass parts are fed from two amp circuits getting the common x.1 bass channel?
 

Chewy

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Feb 10, 2010
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AndrewFG said:
Paul Hobbs said:
Why not upgrade the AV amp to a 9.1 affair. This will allow you to biamp your 802 speakers then keep your existing KEF eggs and have a 7.1 setup.

A technical question: the KEF set has a powered sub-woofer too. Now if I would follow your advice, and use the 802's as fronts, then I assume they would be more than good enough to handle the bass. As you say, the 802's can be biamped, so my question is whether there are 9.1 receivers out there that can be programmed so that the 802's mid+top parts are fed from two amp circuits getting the L/F and R/F channels, and the two bass parts are fed from two amp circuits getting the common x.1 bass channel?

The 802's will be good enough to handle a decent amount of bass, but only down to an optimum cut-off frequency, I doubt they will comfortably go down to 20Hz, in which case any bass frequencies below the optimum cut-off freqnency should be sent to the sub along with the LFE channel (the .1), which should definately not be sent to your mains. Let the 802's shine with what they do best, the mid-range and high frequencies, and let the sub do what it is designed to do, and handle the lowest frequencies.
 

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