Which component to update next?

njprrogers

Well-known member
Aug 12, 2015
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So I have a system for the last year or so in my living room which has been fun to listen to.

I have a Roksan Kandy K2 integrated amplifier + Kef LS50. I have a Marantz NA6005 Streamer and a Wharfdale SW150 sub woofer that is over 10 years old.

I'm thinking it might be fun to try something new ... But what should I upgrade? The sub woofer seems out of step with the rest of the system in terms of quality, I have mainly had it off for the last year as it sounds good on some tracks and bad on others. I'd look at something from BK electronics maybe based on forum hype here and elsewhere. In terms of BK, can someone recommend a sub for this setup for someone who is more concerned with music than AV?

The other option would upgrading the amp to something like a CXA81 and take advantage of it's onboard DAC as the streamer is a budget one.

Finally, the speakers which I have been enjoying - I could get the Metas although I am skeptical as to whether my ears will hear the difference.
 
So I have a system for the last year or so in my living room which has been fun to listen to.

I have a Roksan Kandy K2 integrated amplifier + Kef LS50. I have a Marantz NA6005 Streamer and a Wharfdale SW150 sub woofer that is over 10 years old.

I'm thinking it might be fun to try something new ... But what should I upgrade? The sub woofer seems out of step with the rest of the system in terms of quality, I have mainly had it off for the last year as it sounds good on some tracks and bad on others. I'd look at something from BK electronics maybe based on forum hype here and elsewhere. In terms of BK, can someone recommend a sub for this setup for someone who is more concerned with music than AV?

The other option would upgrading the amp to something like a CXA81 and take advantage of it's onboard DAC as the streamer is a budget one.

Finally, the speakers which I have been enjoying - I could get the Metas although I am skeptical as to whether my ears will hear the difference.
Personally I think the speakers should be the last things you change.
The sub, as you say could be improved. I would also look at the smaller REL subs.
The amp is the last thing I would change, if you find DAC in streamer lacking simply buy an external DAC.
 

MeanandGreen

Well-known member
Dec 26, 2012
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I would suggest if the subwoofer is hit and miss with it’s performance there’s a good chance it may not be integrated as well as it could be, either in it‘s placement or settings. I’d double check you can’t tweak it further before deciding to swap it out.

As for swapping electronics for the sake of swapping, that’s just going to be a waste of money IMO. DACs are audibly transparent from incredibly low price points these days, your amplifier isn’t poor either and you’re happy with your speakers so why change?
 
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plastic penguin

Well-known member
If the sub is hit and miss there's plenty to choose from. But you'll need to get one compatible with the LS50s.

Or, this goes against the grain, swap the LS 50s for good quality, compact floorstanders, such as Totems.
 

njprrogers

Well-known member
Aug 12, 2015
51
11
18,545
Personally I think the speakers should be the last things you change.
The sub, as you say could be improved. I would also look at the smaller REL subs.
The amp is the last thing I would change, if you find DAC in streamer lacking simply buy an external DAC.
Great advice as ever from everyone.

I was leaning towards experimenting with subs as well. I sat down and had a great listening session last night... I do love the sound I get from the K2/LS50 combo. It's nice to hear you guys affirming how good the K2 is...

I would like a little bit of bass extension... I don't need to rock the house down and I am not obsessed with getting the lowest frequency possible. I would prioritise control and responsiveness over that. I'd probably spend 5-600 euros to get that.

What are your thoughts on subs that meet that criteria?
 
Great advice as ever from everyone.

I was leaning towards experimenting with subs as well. I sat down and had a great listening session last night... I do love the sound I get from the K2/LS50 combo. It's nice to hear you guys affirming how good the K2 is...

I would like a little bit of bass extension... I don't need to rock the house down and I am not obsessed with getting the lowest frequency possible. I would prioritise control and responsiveness over that. I'd probably spend 5-600 euros to get that.

What are your thoughts on subs that meet that criteria?
I would say BK Electronics P12-300SB-PR, the SVS SB-1000 or the REL T5x if you can get it for your budget, the older REL T5i may be available cheaper.
 
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njprrogers

Well-known member
Aug 12, 2015
51
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There are some good recommendations there. I am leaning towards the Rel T5X.

However, does anyone have any experience of the Fyne Audio F3-12 or the Q Acoustics QB12? There are a couple of really good deals for those from Richer Sounds in Ireland. If someone had heard them and thought them comparable, I would probably try to save the $$$.
 

njprrogers

Well-known member
Aug 12, 2015
51
11
18,545
Actually, the Fyne Audio is ported and I'd prefer sealed... So anyone heard the QB12?

(Worth asking although I would generally prefer to buy from the sub experts like Rel / BK / SVS)
 

SteveR750

Well-known member
Mar 11, 2005
694
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Before you do anything, have you tried a simple sweep test of the room? That will give you a much clearer subjective idea 9f how your speakers are interacting with your room. You could also install an SPL measurement app on your phone, iPhone is particularly good for this and get a semi quantitative idea of what's going on. The sw150 only has 2 phase settings, so it's sensitive to position. I've got one, it's set to the lowest crossover frequency and about 1/3 vol as my speakers and room have a big resonance at around 45Hz.
 

AJM1981

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Mar 26, 2021
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The SW-150 was on my list for a long time since it is kind of versatile with its extension dial and goes pretty low for a sub that price. I was about to add it to my second setup and the wood veneer finish variation was also a huge plus. On paper to some extent comparable with my current B&W sub. Unfortunately I could not get one to the Netherlands for a reasonable price and / or given a reasonable risk. Also thinking about that when it had to been damaged on arrival or needed service, my 100% personal risk meant I would be screwed and needed to invest a lot to get it back to the UK with all these EU-UK limitations. UK people were luckier here :)

I am heavily biased.. but keep the SW-150 ;)
 
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