• If you ever spot Spam (either in the forums, or received via forum direct message) please use the Report button at the bottom of each post to make sure a Moderator can handle it quickly. Thanks for your help in keeping things running smoothly!

what gives the biggest upgrade ?

Page 3 - Seeking answers? Join the What HiFi community: the world's leading independent guide to buying and owning hi-fi and home entertainment products.

davedotco

New member
Apr 24, 2013
20
0
0
I find this insistance that the room is to blame to be largely a nonsense.

Apart from a few 'odd' rooms most normal domestic setups are absolutely fine for hi-fi.

The problem is poor system building and lousy positioning and installation. Inadequate amplifiers driving inappropriate, nasty, out of control speakers poorly supported and badly placed is the major cause of disatisfaction in my experience.

These issues are so commonplace, you read about them on here everyday but nobody takes any notice when the correct advice is given. It appears that anybody can write in and comment on the mess that is most budget systems, say that it 'sounds great to them' and that is the end of it.
 
J

jcbrum

Guest
davedotco said:
The problem is poor system building and lousy positioning and installation. Inadequate amplifiers driving inappropriate, nasty, out of control speakers poorly supported and badly placed is the major cause of disatisfaction in my experience.
Hmmm. Modern digital sources feeding modern active loudspeakers do make it much easier to get it right. imo.

Legacy separates are full of problems and pitfalls.

What do you think of a B&W Zeppelin Air driven by Airplay from a mobile phone, though ?

JC
 

davedotco

New member
Apr 24, 2013
20
0
0
jcbrum said:
davedotco said:
The problem is poor system building and lousy positioning and installation. Inadequate amplifiers driving inappropriate, nasty, out of control speakers poorly supported and badly placed is the major cause of disatisfaction in my experience.
Hmmm. Modern digital sources feeding modern active loudspeakers do make it much easier to get it right. imo.

Legacy separates are full of problems and pitfalls.

What do you think of a B&W Zeppelin Air driven by Airplay from a mobile phone, though ?

JC
This is WHF though, 'legacy' passive systems are what it is all about.

I have never heard the B&W model you speak of but I do use something similar and cheaper myself.

My desktop system is being used as a main system due to my circumstances and comprises an iPad streaming Spotify premium via an AEX into a Fiio D3 dac which drives a pair of Studiospares/Seiwin SN4 active monitors.

Excluding the iPad, about £200 all up, including a refurb AEX and cables.
 
J

jcbrum

Guest
davedotco said:
This is WHF though, 'legacy' passive systems are what it is all about.
Hmmm, and double Hmmm, Is that so ! :O

And, is that what WHF should be 'all about' ?

:?

JC
 

matt49

New member
Apr 7, 2013
51
0
0
davedotco said:
This is WHF though, 'legacy' passive systems are what it is all about.
I think that's a half-truth. You might argue that active systems are under-represented in the magazine (though there have been reviews of active systems recently). But I should think that broadly speaking the editorial policy of the magazine is firstly to follow and secondarily to predict market trends. It seems to me that the main market trends are towards AV systems, PC-based systems, and mobile systems. And those are what dominate the magazine.

As a happy owner of active speakers (admittedly only diddy ones), I'd like to see more active systems reviewed in WHF, and I have a feeling that's going to happen.

But consider this: when companies like PMC and ATC present their models to WHF, which do you think they're likely to push harder, the actives or the passives? And why? I seriously doubt it's because they think WHF creates the market and they think WHF is biased towards passive systems. The truth, I suspect, is more complex.

But unlike some people (I don't mean you, Dave), I don't have a Manichean worldview.

:santa:

Matt
 

Native_bon

Well-known member
Nov 26, 2008
180
2
18,595
davedotco said:
I find this insistance that the room is to blame to be largely a nonsense.

Apart from a few 'odd' rooms most normal domestic setups are absolutely fine for hi-fi.

The problem is poor system building and lousy positioning and installation. Inadequate amplifiers driving inappropriate, nasty, out of control speakers poorly supported and badly placed is the major cause of disatisfaction in my experience.

These issues are so commonplace, you read about them on here everyday but nobody takes any notice when the correct advice is given. It appears that anybody can write in and comment on the mess that is most budget systems, say that it 'sounds great to them' and that is the end of it.
It seems you are MR know it all, really?.. Why do some speakers not work well in some rooms then..? Is that untrue as well?
 

wilro15

New member
Jan 19, 2012
74
1
0
Room acoustics ARE important, I can speak from personal experience. I recently had trouble with an echoey-reverby (sic) room that made listening to music uncomfortable. I fixed it with some rugs, furniture and custom acoustic art panels. It made a subtle but very worthwhile difference.

Considering some bass traps next year perhaps.
 

davedotco

New member
Apr 24, 2013
20
0
0
jcbrum said:
davedotco said:
This is WHF though, 'legacy' passive systems are what it is all about.
Hmmm, and double Hmmm, Is that so ! :O

And, is that what WHF should be 'all about' ?

:?

JC
I have no real insight into WHF business model though it is pretty clear that they aim at a fairly broard, largely budget market.
 

davedotco

New member
Apr 24, 2013
20
0
0
matt49 said:
davedotco said:
This is WHF though, 'legacy' passive systems are what it is all about.
I think that's a half-truth. You might argue that active systems are under-represented in the magazine (though there have been reviews of active systems recently). But I should think that broadly speaking the editorial policy of the magazine is firstly to follow and secondarily to predict market trends. It seems to me that the main market trends are towards AV systems, PC-based systems, and mobile systems. And those are what dominate the magazine.

As a happy owner of active speakers (admittedly only diddy ones), I'd like to see more active systems reviewed in WHF, and I have a feeling that's going to happen.

But consider this: when companies like PMC and ATC present their models to WHF, which do you think they're likely to push harder, the actives or the passives? And why? I seriously doubt it's because they think WHF creates the market and they think WHF is biased towards passive systems. The truth, I suspect, is more complex.

But unlike some people (I don't mean you, Dave), I don't have a Manichean worldview.

:santa:

Matt
Thank goodness for that, I do not even know what "manichean" means........ :?
 

davedotco

New member
Apr 24, 2013
20
0
0
@ native, Robin and wilro.

As I said I think the room issue is over hyped. Sure there are some truly horrific rooms but in my experience they are pretty rare, the modern style for hard floors and wall etc, doesnt help but as wilro pointed out this can usually be sorted with normal furnishings. If you prefer to keep your living space ultra minimalist then you might have problems, though I consider this a lifestyle issue rather than I hi-fi one.

That said I re-iterate what I said above, most systems sound poor because they are the poorly chosen and badly set up.

Inapropriate speakers are one of the worst problems, the fashion for cheap floorstanders does not help one bit and the fact that they are rarely allowed enough space 'to breath' just makes things worse. Overdriving the room at the bass end is very common, might sound impressive initially but the boom and rattle just becomes tedious.

I have usually found it possible to get almost any speaker to work in any room, as long as we are talking normal sized speakers in normal sized rooms that is, but you may not be able to live with the setup and positioning that makes them work.

The use of inadequate amplifiers is widespread too, just because the play at a reasonable volume without obvious distortion does not make them good, there really is more to it than that.
 

hoopsontoast

New member
Oct 1, 2011
12
0
0
Ignoring JC trying to get his xmas bonus, I would say its speakers that would give the biggest change, pound for pound, and in my experience that is not always 'More Money = Better'.

There are loads of bargains out there, especially speakers that a lot of people discount that they have predjudice over.

Having had quite a few different systems :rofl: that there are no absolutes.

CD/Digital sources are so good these days I dont see a reason to spend on that area, IME and IMO. Vinyl side, then yes, that has tangible changes as you upgrade.

Amps, it comes down to speaker matching. And again, not always the most expensive, or powerfull is best.

For example, I have had some Klipsch Heresey IIs, with a 2w SET (the type they are designed for) and they did not stay long, really not great, then I have had some large speakers (KEF 104/2) with a variety of amps and sounded just about the same with a small 8w EL84 amp as it did with a big Sony 770ES battleship. Neither of those speakers really worked in my room that well, no matter what the amp was like.

Then there have been some OB speakers including some Magnepans, and they were spot on really, hard to fault in the grand scheme of things other than they would have liked a bigger room I think.

Its all about matching the speakers to the room, then the amp to work best with those speakers.

Having gone from an active 3-way horn hybrid to some small passive floorstanders, I can certainly say that technical performance also does not guarantee musical enjoyment. That has been my experience with every system as well, some of the more technically perfect speakers or amps dont always sound the best to me.

I cant think of a single component that I have had that I would recommend without getting to have that person hear it, for example my favourite amp I have heard and also owned is the Decware Zen but I cant think I would recommend it to someone unless they were looking to design a system around it.

So if you can ignore the silly Active/Passive willy waving, Really the best advice I can give is try stuff, in your room for yourself.
 

CnoEvil

New member
Aug 21, 2009
556
8
0
lindsayt said:
No the result would not be highly subjective. Every listener with a non-vested interest would agree on which was the better sounding system and why.

The differences would not be subtle.
Surely, subjective is exactly what that would be.......ie. it comes down to personal opinion.

lindsayt said:
I made it more as an empirical statement than a sweeping statement. However there is a chance that my empirical statement would need ammending in the light of new empirical data. Data which I would be happy for you or anyone else reading this to provide. If they can. Data in the form of a new system that can outperform a collection of classic equipment from the state of the art manufacturers from the 1950's to 1980's - all of whom were large to huge companies and corporates. Concentrating in audio equipment at a period when the market was much larger than it is today.
For your statement to hold water, you would need to have listened to (and directly compared) all the very best of what's available (worldwide) today, with that of yesteryear. Since this is impossible, neither you, nor I can state with any certainty, what the outcome would be. There is also the fact that the makeup of the jury, would greatly effect the outcome.

Based on what I know, I would be looking at a top level Audio Note system, or some big Pathos Monos with top of the range SFs.

Anyway, since it is unlikely ever to happen, it is no more than an unprovable, hypothetical conundrum.

Season's Greetings, my friend

:cheers:

Cno
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY

TRENDING THREADS

Latest posts