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OCLV5500's picture
Last seen: 3 years 4 months ago
Joined: Sep 26 2009 - 12:36pm
Help: Bookshelf speakers for low volume listening??

I could use some help.

I'm looking for a pair of bookshelf speakers for a home office setup. The room is 12'X11' with 8' ceilings.
I'm planning on using a vintage ReVox A-78 integrated amplifier (out being restored now) that my Dad has owned since the early 1970's for power with a Mac mini front end...possibly running into something like the Schiit Bitfrost. I listen to al kinds of music, but not often to heavy rock. I would like the speakers to be neutral to warm sounding and sound amazing at lower volume levels. This is not a setup that I will often enjoy from the ideal stereo imaging position. However, I'd like to be able to listen for extended periods of time without feeling like I want to turn it off or that I need to keep turning it up to hear the details and enjoy the music. Budget-wise, I'd like to be at $1000 or less, but would go up to about $1500 for the right setup.

I was thinking about the Totem Rainmakers, but I'm worked the ReVox may not power then sufficiently as I've read they are very power hungry. I've also read they tend to come alive at higher volume levels.

I don't have room for floor standers. The speakers will need to sit on a credenza-like piece of furniture.

Hoping you guys have some good options that I should be looking at???

Catch22's picture
Last seen: 1 month 1 week ago
Joined: Nov 21 2010 - 1:58pm
Totem can be a bit revealing and not what I would call warm.

Robert Reina has been on a roll reviewing standmount speakers lately. You might want to read some of his reviews and his comparisons to other speakers. Here's a paragraph of his review of the Epos Elan 10:

"In the Elan 10, the Epos design team has designed a stunning and virtually flawless loudspeaker. On a number of levels it exceeded the performance of its predecessor, the M5i, and overall, it has impressed me more than any other Epos model I've heard in my house. I've now reviewed several dozen bookshelf speakers, and can think of none that offers more sound quality per dollar than the Elan 10."

And here's a link to Stereophile's latest reviews of standmount speakers.

bierfeldt's picture
Last seen: 1 hour 20 min ago
Joined: Oct 26 2007 - 2:30pm
Checkout the Peachtree D5

They are a darn nice speaker and sound really good at lower volumes. The D5 is a bit bigger than the D4 and will go down to 50hz. A lot of clarity and a big soundstage for a little speaker. They are $999 a pair. You could check out the Revel Performa 3 M105. They are $1500 but amazingly good speakers. I power mine with a 50w Rega Brio R and love them.

This is a little bit of a longshot but check and see if any local Dynaudio dealers have the Excite X-12's. They were discontinued and if they have them in stock you might be able to get a deal on them. The x-14's are the current speaker and would be prices between the Peachtree's and the Revels.

Good luck.

commsysman's picture
Last seen: 1 day 16 hours ago
Joined: Apr 4 2006 - 11:33am

I suggest that you get some sealed (non-ported) speakers for that type of listening. Most speakers are ported, and the ports make positioning fairly critical. This could be a problem in your situation.

The NHT Classic Model 2 is an excellent speaker that I would recommend.

wkhanna's picture
Last seen: 1 year 5 months ago
Joined: Jul 13 2007 - 1:46pm

If your looking for 'non-fatiguing' you may want to consider auditioning some Harbeth's.


Bill - on the Hill
Practicing Curmudgeon & Audio Snob
- just an “ON” switch, Please –

BRuggles's picture
Last seen: 1 year 11 months ago
Joined: May 8 2013 - 6:44pm
What about KEF LS50s?

The KEF LS50s are on the upper end of your budget, but surely making Recommended Components Class A list should count for justification... It would be nice to get 'me all, though, wouldn't it?

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