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tz250
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Speaker Recommendation Sought

Hello All,

I'm looking to upgrade my loudspeakers and my budget is $10k US. Would like to achieve this without having to upgrade my amplification. Looking for your thoughts and recommendations, any input is greatly appreciated in advance.

My current amplifier is an Audio Research VSi55 integrated tube amp and my current loudspeakers are a pair of Wilson Benesch Arc monitor speakers on stands.

My listening room is 20' wide by 30' deep with the speakers located on the 20' wide wall. The front of the speakers are 2'9" from the back wall. The left speaker is 6' away from its side wall and the right speaker is 7' from the right wall. My listening chair sweet spot is 11' away on axis.

My musical interest in order of preference is jazz, classical, orchestra, world music and classic rock/folk.

I'm open to all suggestions including panel speakers, horn or open baffle speakers.

Since we're in a pandemic, I'm hoping to secure listening time at various dealers and will bring my amp along for the tests. They all seem to be very accommodating and have offered to open early or close late to ensure I am the only customer in the store. Very much above and beyond.

The only speaker that I've read about so far that has perked my interest is the Focal Kanta No. 2. My only reservation here is that I'm not a fan of overly bright tweeters and I've read mixed reviews of this online.

Hoping I put this in the correct forum section, I am a long time Stereophile reader but a rookie at posting.

Many thanks again in advance.

Robert

Commish
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Too many choices

I'll be the first to tell you that there are too many choices out there for you to solicit recommendations, and you should only purchase what you personally like. Speakers are the most subjective choice in a system. Most people are chasing the holy grail in reproduced sound, but everyone is willing to make different sonic tradeoffs because it is impossible to attain perfection--you can only achieve what you love and makes music come alive for you.
Your VSi55 will drive many speakers that are reasonably efficient. Focal, B&W, Dynaudio, Sonus Faber, Spendor, Dali, Vandersteen, Harbeth, ProAc, Magnepan, PSB... the list goes on and on, and they are all different. You can get a feel by reading reviews, but they are written by individuals who are generally seasoned audiophiles who can write well. If you get together with friends to listen you will probably agree about a lot of things musically, but it does not mean that you all have the same tastes or make the same choices. You don't buy what they like, you choose what you like. The same is true for reviewers.
I was involved in retail audio for many years, and we carried different products for a reason.
One bit of advice is to try different impedance taps when you try different speakers; many times a 4-ohm speaker will sound better when using the 8-ohm tap: you won't know until you try it. Good luck, enjoy the chase. BTW, your Wilson Benesch Arc speakers are extremely good. Perhaps you should add a good subwoofer (or two), which will allow greater bass depth, dynamics and output.

tz250
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Thanks Commish for the

Thanks Commish for the excellent advice. I will visit the local dealers and listen to speakers in my price range.

My Wilson Benesch Arc speakers are rated at 6 ohms. I currently have them connected to the 4 ohm port on my amp, I'll try the 8 ohm ports and listen for a while to the difference.

About 6 years ago, I had added a Velodyne 19 inch servo controlled subwoofer to my mix and it greatly improved the bottom end. The biggest issue I have with the Arc's is that I have to move the speakers out another 2 feet and my listening chair in so that I'm much closer to the speakers in order to get that perfect sound (to me). I was hoping that a larger speaker would allow me to keep my listening chair where in normally resides (~11' feet back). The fairly large 20'x30' room is probably a contributor to this challenge.

You are right...the Arc's are sweet but seem to require too much shuffling of my room every time I listen to music.

BluesDog
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Michael Kelly's 7T

Have you listened to the Revel Performa3 F208? Might work for you and save some coin. You should also be able to hear the BE228 but the Beryllium tweeter may be more distinct then you like. I have heard the F208 and it sounded great. Although I have not heard Michael Kelly's 7T, I HAVE heard the 6T and it sounded very good. Made me want to hear the 7T. Kalman Rubinson wrote a very good review about the 7T. I think the 7T may end up being just the ticket for you.

BluesDog
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Aerial Acoustics 7T

That would be the Aerial Acoustics 7T

Old Audiophile
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Monkey Wrench

Let me throw a monkey wrench into this discussion to get the little grey cells churning even more.

Commish provides the best advice here. There is certainly no substitute for critical listening sessions under controlled conditions when it comes to evaluating audio toys, especially speakers. You have a relatively large listening room, which is nice, and it sounds like you have your speakers wisely placed. It also sounds as though you've already considered the possibility of replacing your amp. I'm guessing to achieve more dynamic sound? Splitting that budget of 10K provides many options in this regard, especially if that 10K gets spent in the same shop. That gives you significant bargaining power! With that kind of green, sticker prices do not apply! Your existing equipment and music preferences suggest, to me, that you tend to prefer a sound signature that's at least a little on the warm side. Keep in mind this can be achieved with good SS integrated amps these days. McIntosh, Simaudio Moon, Musical Fidelity are but a few that immediately come to mind. My listening room (living room) is basically the same size as yours, with 9' solid wood ceiling, exposed solid wood 6"X6" beams and 7" solid wood exterior walls. My musical tastes are, also, very similar to yours. A pair of Revel Performa3 F206 and 130 watts of McIntosh SS power rocks my world in that room. However, with your budget and your room placement options, a pair of the F208 would probably be a better option, with or without a sub. For that matter, a pair of the F206 with a sub would probably accomplish the same end. There are, of course, as Commish points out, many, many options with your budget. Only your ears will ultimately sort that out. It would seem you've peaked our interest. So, please report back after you've made your decision(s). Interested audiophiles would love to know. Good Luck! Stay Safe! Stay Healthy! And may music always be with you!

BluesDog
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Legacy Audio

The January 21, 2021 - 10:49pm (new)
The Legacy Signature and Focus SE certainly seem worth listening to. Have not heard them but would love to. All reviews point to robust capabilities. Steve Feinstein of Audioholics wrote a good article about the Signatures. He chose them as the last speakers he will ever buy.

tz250
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Commish Psychic?

I believe Commish to be psychic...

Cannot recall the last time I mucked with the back of my amp. Last night, per Commish's recommendation, I went to move my speaker cables from the 4 ohm tap to the 8 ohm tap. Was surprised to find them already in the 8 ohm tap. Moved them to the 4 ohm tap and the difference was immediate. Less bright top end and less forward overall. Much better sounding, I could not stop listening to music last night.

Prior to this latest discovery, had always plugged my speakers in the 4 ohm tap. I'm the only person who touches it so I can't blame anyone else.

Thanks for the recommendation Commish.

tz250
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Thanks For The Speakers Recommendations
BluesDog wrote:

The January 21, 2021 - 10:49pm (new)
The Legacy Signature and Focus SE certainly seem worth listening to. Have not heard them but would love to. All reviews point to robust capabilities. Steve Feinstein of Audioholics wrote a good article about the Signatures. He chose them as the last speakers he will ever buy.

Have added the Reval, Acoustics Aerial and Legacy Focus SE to my wish list to demo.

Soundstage and imaging (when recorded for such) are extremely high on my priority list, my Wilson Benesch Arc speakers do this superbly.

If given the chance to demo these speakers, I'm curious to see how they compare in these regards.

Had watched a few YouTube videos on the Focus SE, they look like the could throw conventional wisdom to the air! Wouldn't mind rocking out with them for a while.

tz250
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Like Your Thinking
Old Audiophile wrote:

Let me throw a monkey wrench into this discussion to get the little grey cells churning even more.

Commish provides the best advice here. There is certainly no substitute for critical listening sessions under controlled conditions when it comes to evaluating audio toys, especially speakers. You have a relatively large listening room, which is nice, and it sounds like you have your speakers wisely placed. It also sounds as though you've already considered the possibility of replacing your amp. I'm guessing to achieve more dynamic sound? Splitting that budget of 10K provides many options in this regard, especially if that 10K gets spent in the same shop. That gives you significant bargaining power! With that kind of green, sticker prices do not apply! Your existing equipment and music preferences suggest, to me, that you tend to prefer a sound signature that's at least a little on the warm side. Keep in mind this can be achieved with good SS integrated amps these days. McIntosh, Simaudio Moon, Musical Fidelity are but a few that immediately come to mind. My listening room (living room) is basically the same size as yours, with 9' solid wood ceiling, exposed solid wood 6"X6" beams and 7" solid wood exterior walls. My musical tastes are, also, very similar to yours. A pair of Revel Performa3 F206 and 130 watts of McIntosh SS power rocks my world in that room. However, with your budget and your room placement options, a pair of the F208 would probably be a better option, with or without a sub. For that matter, a pair of the F206 with a sub would probably accomplish the same end. There are, of course, as Commish points out, many, many options with your budget. Only your ears will ultimately sort that out. It would seem you've peaked our interest. So, please report back after you've made your decision(s). Interested audiophiles would love to know. Good Luck! Stay Safe! Stay Healthy! And may music always be with you!

I must admit, I hadn't thought of dividing the funds between a new SS amp and speakers but I like the idea.

With COVID being so rampant here, I will have to postpone my demo tests if I still want to see my granddaughter regularly (so the wife says).

I will in fact keep this thread posted on anything new I listen to, good or bad.

Thank you and stay safe as well!

Old Audiophile
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Take Heart, TZ!

According to what I read & watch on the news, it looks like us geezers will probably be getting our vaccinations sometime next month. As such, by March, we should be better protected against this damn plague. So, looks like you'll be back in the saddle again soon, with regard to scheduling critical listening sessions. In that spirit, I offer this for what it's worth, although my guess is you are probably already aware of this.

If you do ultimately decide to split your budget between a new SS integrated and speakers, be aware that some SS integrated amps with power supplies that don't double from 8 to 4 ohms will likely not do as well with less than 8 ohm nominal load speakers. Here's an example of what I mean: I did some serious seat time with a pair of Aerial Acoustics 6T that I absolutely adored! I was certain my ears had finally found that elusive "WOW" moment they had been searching for, within my budget reach, of course. I was ready to hand over my plastic and say load 'em in the car but, then, since this shop had a MAC MA5200 taken in trade, I asked the sales person to hook that up to hear what would happen. I'd initially been listening to the 6T with a McIntosh MC275. Can't remember the preamp but guessing it was the MAC C22. With that combo, those 6T were nothing short of sublime, pure audio nirvana, especially with the kind of music you like! With the MAC MA5200, however, the 6T still sounded amazing but it was immediately clear these 4 ohm gems liked more current. Even so, these babies were so nice that they remained my top choice for quite a while until I heard the Revel F206. I'd be quite curious to hear the 6T with a Simaudio Moon Neo 340 IX or a Musical Fidelity M6si. For that matter, I'd be curious to hear how the Aerial Acoustics 7T would sound with your amp, which is where BluesDog is coming from, I think.

tz250
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Taking Heart
Old Audiophile wrote:

According to what I read & watch on the news, it looks like us geezers will probably be getting our vaccinations sometime next month. As such, by March, we should be better protected against this damn plague. So, looks like you'll be back in the saddle again soon, with regard to scheduling critical listening sessions. In that spirit, I offer this for what it's worth, although my guess is you are probably already aware of this.

If you do ultimately decide to split your budget between a new SS integrated and speakers, be aware that some SS integrated amps with power supplies that don't double from 8 to 4 ohms will likely not do as well with less than 8 ohm nominal load speakers. Here's an example of what I mean: I did some serious seat time with a pair of Aerial Acoustics 6T that I absolutely adored! I was certain my ears had finally found that elusive "WOW" moment they had been searching for, within my budget reach, of course. I was ready to hand over my plastic and say load 'em in the car but, then, since this shop had a MAC MA5200 taken in trade, I asked the sales person to hook that up to hear what would happen. I'd initially been listening to the 6T with a McIntosh MC275. Can't remember the preamp but guessing it was the MAC C22. With that combo, those 6T were nothing short of sublime, pure audio nirvana, especially with the kind of music you like! With the MAC MA5200, however, the 6T still sounded amazing but it was immediately clear these 4 ohm gems liked more current. Even so, these babies were so nice that they remained my top choice for quite a while until I heard the Revel F206. I'd be quite curious to hear the 6T with a Simaudio Moon Neo 340 IX or a Musical Fidelity M6si. For that matter, I'd be curious to hear how the Aerial Acoustics 7T would sound with your amp, which is where BluesDog is coming from, I think.

The damn plague is right.

Our state is telling us that they hope to complete our age group before spring...hopefully sooner.

Thanks for the heads-up on the amp concern with the 6T. My first choice is to try and find a pair of speakers that work well with my Audio Research amp. I know that it only takes part of the credit but my system produces scary good soundstaging and the imaging is nearly holographic.

The nice thing is that I have time to do more research before I can safely go out and demo my new list of potential speakers and see what surprises each dealer may have.

BluesDog
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Establishing A Baseline

You might want to start with the Revel Performa3 F208 as your baseliene. If you audition that speaker you might also want to audition the Performa BE228 for comparison. This will give you an informed position regarding a Beryllium tweeter. It's one thing to read all the articles that we all read. It is a whole other thing when you can say "I have heard." It's the equivalent of saying "I have seen the elephant."

tz250
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Re: Establishing A Baseline
BluesDog wrote:

You might want to start with the Revel Performa3 F208 as your baseliene. If you audition that speaker you might also want to audition the Performa BE228 for comparison. This will give you an informed position regarding a Beryllium tweeter. It's one thing to read all the articles that we all read. It is a whole other thing when you can say "I have heard." It's the equivalent of saying "I have seen the elephant."

Per Google Map, there's a Revel dealer that is only 18.7 miles from where I live. I can easily start there and begin my demo with the F208 and then the F228Be.

I have a notebook for recording listening impressions of specific tracks from my current system and will record notes for all demos I attend. My notebook has all the usual audiophile categories and I include a subjective write-up at the end. I did this before I purchased my current set-up because there's no way I can rely on my memory alone.

I'm extremely curious to hear the Beryllium tweeter and hear how it sounds to me.

This is an extremely fun undertaking, makes you feel like a kid again.

klosterman
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No love for Tannoy?

Please don't buy anything without auditioning Tannoy. So easy on the ears, and so so good with jazz. Oh my laws yes.

tz250
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Re: No Love For Tannoy?
klosterman wrote:

Please don't buy anything without auditioning Tannoy. So easy on the ears, and so so good with jazz. Oh my laws yes.

I've read about Tannoy's but have never goten a chance to demo. Beautiful cabinetry, very classic look. Do you own a pair and if yes, which model?

BluesDog
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More "Usual Suspects"

There is also the Focal Kanta No 2 and the B & W 803 D2 and 802 D3. I'm not sure how much venturing forth you want to do in the time of Covid, but these are other choices. Start with the Revels and take time to assess.

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Hope your search is going

Hope your search is going well. From my perspective I would not split the budget and go solid state. The Audio Research has a great sound that sounds completely in the vein of what you want. Also the quality of the sound in a $10K speaker is leagues above a $5K speaker. The real trick is to find the speaker technology and house sound you like. I like many of the same kinds of music. Audio Research is frequently paired with Sonus Faber. I would recommend the Olympica 3... you could get used in your budget, or stretch a bit for the new Nova. I have had season tickets 7th row center to the symphony for ten years and it was that experience that moved me first to Sonus Faber and then step wise up the line. If you decide you want more power you can upgrade with AUdio Research and be assured you are going to be compatible. Planar speakers can be finicky and horns are also not main stream. I owned planar for decades and finally realized although they have some unique characteristics there are more benefits to traditional, really well made full spectrum coned speakers.

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Just To Be Clear

When I put forth the idea of splitting the budget and mentioned SS amps I certainly did not mean to imply or push SS over tubes or hybrid. There are certainly some good choices in all of those design types. In fact, tubes and hybrid would likely be more on the warmer side than a good many SS choices. As you are no doubt probably already aware, paring amplification and speakers (as is the case for many components) is like a marriage. Some go well with one another and some are not the best match. Critical listening under controlled conditions (i.e. with componentry as similar to yours as possible, in listening rooms as similar to yours, as possible) will help you determine what the marriage made in heaven sounds like. Good Luck!

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Legacy Audio Signatures?

I wonder if TZ250 ever got around to auditioning any Revels? I would be remiss in not mentioning the Legacy Signatures. They have a lot of what exists in the Legacy Focus SE. And of all the speakers he has heard and could choose, Steve Feinstein of Audioholics chose the Signatures as “the last speakers he will ever own.” His wife not only liked the sound and looks of them, she urged Steve to move them from their lair into the family room! I wonder if anyone has heard BOTH the Aerial Acoustics 7T and the Legacy Audio Signatures and how they compare?

tz250
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Emerging From The Abyss
BluesDog wrote:

I wonder if TZ250 ever got around to auditioning any Revels? I would be remiss in not mentioning the Legacy Signatures. They have a lot of what exists in the Legacy Focus SE. And of all the speakers he has heard and could choose, Steve Feinstein of Audioholics chose the Signatures as “the last speakers he will ever own.” His wife not only liked the sound and looks of them, she urged Steve to move them from their lair into the family room! I wonder if anyone has heard BOTH the Aerial Acoustics 7T and the Legacy Audio Signatures and how they compare?

Hi BluesDog - it is now 2 weeks since my second vaccine so I'm free and clear to go out and demo speakers. Found a dealer that is about an hour away that has the Revel F228Be for me to demo. They have a 70 watt tube amp that they can connect to the F228Be which is close to my AudioResearch VSi55. Their policy states that you cannot bring your amp in to test speakers, I fully understand that. The one and only Legacy Audio dealer in town sold off all of his demo equipment (due to COVID) and the next closest dealer is in Los Angeles (I'm 60 miles SE of Phoenix). I have a son who lives in LA and I will be visiting them in early June. While I'm there, will see if I can demo the Signature and Focus. The Focus XD has me excited due to the fact that it's semi-active and my VSi55 can easily drive the mid-range and tweeters.

Question, is the Revel made in China? This is a very hard answer to find on the internet.

Kal Rubinson
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tz250][quote=BluesDog wrote:
tz250][quote=BluesDog wrote:

Question, is the Revel made in China? This is a very hard answer to find on the internet.

At the time of our review, no.
https://www.stereophile.com/content/revel-performa-f228be-loudspeaker-specifications

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Back in the hunt!

TZ, I see you are back in the hunt. That's great! On your trek out to Tinseltown, see if you can talk your son into accompanying you on some of your critical listening sessions. Might be a fun outing. Besides, it's always fun to have another set of ears in the listening room with you, especially younger ones that likely haven't yet succumbed to Presbycusis (natural & gradual age-related high-frequency hearing loss affecting a third of us). Regardless, it's always fun to have a partner in crime, no matter the age, just to compare notes with. Sometimes, they pick up on things you might miss & vice versa. Makes for fun conversation, either way.

Now that it seems clear you are sticking with your AR amp and initial budget, I thought I'd second Bluesdog's suggestion of the Aerial Acoustics 7T. Can't say I'm familiar with your amp or that I've heard the 7T. However, as I mentioned in a previous post, I have done serious seat-time with the 6T, paired with a very nice MAC tube amp and that was sheer audio nirvana to my ears. Having done a review of the 7T, Mr. Rubinson would definitely be the authority on this potential match. Both the 7T and 6T are relatively sensitive 4 Ohm nominal load speakers that I'm confident would be outstanding with the proper amp.

Kal Rubinson
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Old Audiophile wrote:
Old Audiophile wrote:

Can't say I'm familiar with your amp or that I've heard the 7T..................... Having done a review of the 7T, Mr. Rubinson would definitely be the authority on this potential match.

While I have reviewed the 7T (and others mentioned before), I have never used any of them with a tube amp.

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Welcome Back To Your Speaker Quest!

Glad to see your patience and discipline are about to pay off. There is a sometimes hilarious article about the Legacy Signature that Steve Feinstein wrote about for Audioholics. He caused quite a seismic disturbance in The Force. He wrote an even funnier but informative article about what he needed to do about a bass problem in a ginormous room when his wife encouraged him to move it out of “the basement” to the family living room. I kid you not.

In reviewing the Revel Performa F228Be it may be a useful comparison to also try to hear the Performa3 F208 as a basline comparison. If nothing else you will be able to appreciate the differences between a regular tweeter and Beryllium.

The F208 may surprise you. Specs don’t always mean everything. Sometime ago I accompanied a friend to hear the F206 and a PSB Imagine T2. We wre both certain that the PSB would easily carry the day but we found out different. The F206 had more meaningful bass then it’s specs would seen possible. The treble and midrange were superb and the off axis performance was very impressive. My friend badly WANTED to like the PSB but I demurred. I felt the treble and midrange were just better in the F206 and the bass was somewhat lower but muddier in the PSB. As a byproduct of my friend’s speaker quest I got to hear the F208 for awhile and haven’t been right since. My friend bought the F206 in walnut and has been ahaapy camper since. But if we had gone purely on specs, on paper the PSB wins. Something seems a little off on Revels f206 (in a good way) Their published specs on the F206 say it will play down to 33hz –10db. What sounds like is 33 hz at –3 or –6 db.

ANYWAY. We are all happy and excited to hear about your vision/speaker quest so, good hunting to you.

tz250
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Thank you Kal
Kal Rubinson][quote=tz250 wrote:
BluesDog wrote:

Question, is the Revel made in China? This is a very hard answer to find on the internet.

At the time of our review, no.
https://www.stereophile.com/content/revel-performa-f228be-loudspeaker-specifications

I've recently read way too many articles on why it's so difficult to determine where a loudspeaker is manufactured and from where the components are sourced. Seems like speakers have become like cars, they're often a global collaboration.

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Back In The Day, It Was So Much Easier
Old Audiophile wrote:

TZ, I see you are back in the hunt. That's great! On your trek out to Tinseltown, see if you can talk your son into accompanying you on some of your critical listening sessions. Might be a fun outing. Besides, it's always fun to have another set of ears in the listening room with you, especially younger ones that likely haven't yet succumbed to Presbycusis (natural & gradual age-related high-frequency hearing loss affecting a third of us). Regardless, it's always fun to have a partner in crime, no matter the age, just to compare notes with. Sometimes, they pick up on things you might miss & vice versa. Makes for fun conversation, either way.

Now that it seems clear you are sticking with your AR amp and initial budget, I thought I'd second Bluesdog's suggestion of the Aerial Acoustics 7T. Can't say I'm familiar with your amp or that I've heard the 7T. However, as I mentioned in a previous post, I have done serious seat-time with the 6T, paired with a very nice MAC tube amp and that was sheer audio nirvana to my ears. Having done a review of the 7T, Mr. Rubinson would definitely be the authority on this potential match. Both the 7T and 6T are relatively sensitive 4 Ohm nominal load speakers that I'm confident would be outstanding with the proper amp.

Hello Old Audiophile - great minds think alike. My son is a music lover and will be joining me at the demo. I've also convinced his father-in-law to join us. He's an M.D. who mainly listens to classical music and for the last few years, is learning how to play classical guitar. He does not have a decent stereo at home and I'm hoping that by joining us, he could at least become aware of hi-end audio.

When I lived in NYC (born & raised), there were so many hi-end audio dealers and it was easy to find someone who had the equipment you were looking to demo. No that I'm in a rural/remote area, these options are far fewer. Of the speakers I'd like to demo (Revel, Aerial Acoustics, Focal, Dali, Legacy Audio), I've only been successful in locating a Revel dealer who actually has a full line for me to demo. I can now see why some people will purchase equipment solely based on reviews. I personally cannot do that, even if the dealer or manufacturer offer some type of return policy. As much as I'd love to hear the 6T and 7T, I cannot locate a dealer that has any (not even in L.A.).

In the mean time, I'm still enjoying life with my Wilson Benesch Arc's. I have a portable camping chair that I position in my sweet spot and pull the speakers out from the front wall. At that point, I am immersed into the soundstage and imaging and it's hard to imagine life being any better.

My quest is to find a speaker as good or better that will achieve the same from my normal listening position in my new 20'x30'x9' room.

tz250
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Re: "Welcome Back To Your Speaker Quest!"

Hi BluesDog - I've abandoned all interest in the Legacy Audio Focus SE or XD. Seems like they require ~3' distance from the front wall and my room cannot accommodate that. I will consider listening to the Signature SE while I'm in L.A. next month.

I'm always suspicious of speakers that can play beyond their expected physical ability but I never argue with my ears. I just have to make sure that what I'm hearing right then will still be as good 1-2 hours later.

Incredibly excited that there's a Revel dealer in town, will definitely work my way up to the F228Be, take notes and then share my thoughts.

Old Audiophile
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I'm so Excited!

As the Pointer Sisters would say: "I'm so excited" for you, TZ! I can feel your excitement and anticipation. The Aerial Acoustics are made or assembled in Eastern Massachusetts. You owe it to yourself and your ears to go have a listen if there is a venue anywhere close to you. IMHO, they are definitely worth a road trip. They are, indeed, that nice! If you decide to do this, I would encourage you to take notes, be very cognizant of the equipment used for the audition (which you should dictate, as much as possible) and the acoustic characteristics of the listening room because you're right. When auditioning great equipment under controlled conditions your ears do tend to like the last thing you hear. Good luck, brother! Please let us know what you finally decide on.

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$10,000 Speaker Impressions

Goes without saying that you will be using as close to your current AR amp as you can. Maybe your family buying stuff might leverage a better deal? Good call to drop speakers that can’t play well fairly close to the front wall. A lot of speaker makers in this price range seem to anticipate buyers with larger rooms and plenty of space. I try to pay very close attention to what reviewers say the distance is from the front of the speaker to the rear wall and the sidewalls. Some reviewers have speakers at least 6 feet into a room. This tells you nothing about how such a speaker will behave to boundary gain closer to the front wall. It is also harder to gauge bass capability.

Some speaker makers try hard to make sure rear ports work well with fairly close proximity to a rear wall but some don’t. For this reason I tend to prefer speakers with front ports to alleviate this concern. This is another area in which the Revels are helpful.

The Legacy Audio Signature SE might still be worth your while as it has no rear ports and seems to tolerate being fairly close to a front wall. 10 inch woofers will address stout but well controlled bass.

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A Few More Thoughts

TZ, my suspicion is you may already be wise to this but I thought I'd pass this along because I think it's important.

As you prepare for serious critical listening auditions, you'll very likely be in listening rooms very different than yours, both dimensionally and acoustically. In scheduling auditions, you should specifically describe the equipment you have & intend to use, your listening room (including acoustic properties), speaker placement limitations (space between front baffles & wall behind; space between speakers; corner placement issues, if any; etc. + amount & nature of space behind the sweet spot - important in the case of AMT tweeters - maybe Beryllium, too?) and request or, rather, dictate to the audio shops involved that you want them to replicate your listening room circumstances and use equipment as similar to yours as possible. Impress upon them an appreciation for not wasting your time. Few things irritate me more than going through this with audio shops and arriving for an audition(s) only to see they have set up an amplifier or other demonstration components that are much higher quality than what I have at home. You'll be spending lots of dough. You have every right to dictate, as opposed to politely requesting. In this interest, I have taken to perusing any given shop's products and actually specifying or discussing with them what components I want them to use for auditions. Bring music or have the shops play music you are very familiar with; music that spans the audio frequency range from top to bottom, including male and female voice performances, so you can challenge or test the speakers' abilities. Speakers you'll be auditioning will likely not be on spikes but this is understandable, given audition circumstances. If anything, lack of spikes might make some speakers sound less tight, less accurate, more boommie or more muddy in the bass. You'll have to extrapolate what that might mean in your home. Virtually everyone's home listening room's acoustic properties are different. The only way you'll know what speakers will sound like in your home is to hear them at home. Any reputable audio shop will have, at least, a 30 to 60 day return policy, hopefully without restocking fee or anything like that. You'll likely have to pay for return shipping, however. This poses an interesting dilemma vis-a-vis any purchase far of field, so to speak. Moral of the story: unbox the new babies carefully and keep the boxes until completely satisfied, just in case. Also, new speakers will need break-in time before sounding their best. You should ask and do some research on this, as this relates to the return policy. My new Revel were purported to require 100 to 120 hours break-in time. I found 90 hours about did it. However, all thoughts of the possibility of taking them back vanished after about 30 to 40 hours. Specifications, especially for speakers, are generally not very helpful. I was very surprised when I auditioned my Revel; even more surprised that they actually sound better under my roof than they did at the audio shop! I'm fortunate my listening room is acoustically blessed. Trust your ears! They know everything you need to know!

Finally, I'll leave you with a little piece of advice I got from Mr. Kalman Rubinson, which I think is very wise. During auditions, it's comparatively more important to listen for what a speaker may be doing wrong, as opposed to what it's doing right because wrong will always be wrong. He also said something about the "right", in some cases, being tantamount to a one night stand, which brought the point home. Sound advice! Pun fully intended! I have to credit Mr. Rubinson for knowing his stuff because, in large measure, he actually predicted which speakers my ears would tell me to bring home. This reminds me! One of the speakers he thought I'd like was Monitor Audio. He was right! First British speakers I've heard that don't sound like British speakers. Maybe another speaker you might want to work into your audition list.

Good Luck! Let us know what you come home with.

P.S. Auditioned the Focal Aria 926 and 936. Liked them both but the 936 was better, of course. With your budget, the Kanta line is probably where you want to spend your time. If you're interested, there's a YouTube video of World Wide Stereo's factory tour of Focal.

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Bring A Tape Measure

As much as you can try and replicate home conditions, your mileage may vary except for the distance to the front wall as measured by the front of your speakers to your back wall. Try to set up auditioned speakers the same way. Try to think about the effects of boundary gain (good or bad) and exactly HOW a speaker pressurizes a room. I stand by front ported (or no ports) speakers having more boundary flexibility with the front wall then rear ported, bass reflex speakers.

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BluesDog wrote:
BluesDog wrote:

I stand by front ported (or no ports) speakers having more boundary flexibility with the front wall then rear ported, bass reflex speakers.

I appreciate the growing choice of bottom-porting.

tz250
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Every Journey Begins With A First Step

And gentlemen, today, I took that first step.

So, my current list of speakers (this is a live list) that I hope to demo include The Revel PerformaBe and Performa3 line, Legacy Audio Signature SE, Aerial Acoustics 7T, Focal Kanta 2 and the Dali Epicon 8. I'm also willing to listen to other speakers that were traded in to dealers. Well, the dealer of whom had originally sold me my latest amp & speakers called and said he had taken in a pair of Golden Ear Triton Reference speakers and asked if I'd like a listen. My Saturday plans got quickly rearranged and I was able to go today (CD's, notebook, tape measure in hand).

The dealership is tiny, their one and only listening room is 14'x15'x9'. The Triton's were pushed out from the front wall ~4' and my listening couch was ~5' from the speakers. No way for me to simulate my 20'x30"x9' listening room. But, I made the best of it and spent 2 hours doing some critical listening.

I started by listening to a track by Holly Cole called "One Trick Pony". It has a bit of everything to evaluate, low bass frequency, high frequency clicks, female voice, etc... I started with this track because it was the last thing I had heard on my home system last, so the experience was still fresh in my memory. A list of the artists and tracks I played:

Holly Cole - "One Trick Pony", "Romantically Helpless"
Dire Straits - "Why Worry", "Ride Across The River", "Brothers In Arms"
Pat Metheny - "When We Were Free"
John Patitucci - "Messaien's Gumbo"
John Cocuzzi - Benny's Bugle
John Previti - "My Rosetta"

My notes show tight, clean bass that didn't seem to go too low. Good tonality, good mid-range, good dynamics. Soundstage was a decent size and imaging was very good. The AMT tweeter produced good highs, nothing was every bright. Off axis horizontally made me lose the soundstage completely. Off axis vertically produced little change. My final note states that this is an excellent speaker for its price but not as good as my current gear.

Spent a good deal of time speaking to the owner of the shop about Sandy Gross and how many well respected professionals in the audiophile community praise both Sandy and the Triton Reference.

The last time I critically listened to audio equipment was back in 2007 so today was a blast. Look forward to my next outing!

Additional Note Added 09-MAY-2021 - When I listened to Pat Metheny's "When We Were Free", I was extremely surprised that the opening bass lines played very low (in volume, not frequency) on the Tritons as compared to my system (even with my sub turned off). BTW, love this album and Antonio Sanchez just about stole the show. John Cocuzzi's "Benny's Bugle" really tests the high frequencies with vibes and a clarinet, the AMT tweeter definitely plays on the softer/warmer side as compared to my ARCs. John Previti's "My Rosetta" also starts with bass lines and although the bass wasn't deep, it was definitely fast and tight.

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VERY COOL!

Sounds like fun, TZ, despite the limited listening room. Four foot placement from the wall seems odd for those speakers, in my view. I think 2 or 3 would have been plenty (wall to baffle). Can't say I've heard the GE Triton Reference but I did serious seat-time with the Triton Two+, powered by a Simaudio Moon NEO 340 IX, in a much larger listening room with its own drawbacks (e.g. WAY too chock full of other equipment). The Triton Two+ were the speakers I'd hoped to come home with because of their slender dimensions, relative to a right channel corner placement issue I have to deal with in my listening room (30' X 14'). Unfortunately, the ones I heard only had about 20 hours play on them. Regardless, I liked what I heard very much but thought they needed more break-in time. I A/B'd them with a pair of Martin Logan Motion 60XTi with about 40 hours play (also probably not enough) that sounded a bit better to my ears. Couldn't find another dealer within reasonable proximity who had a fully broken-in pair. So, after the many months of research and seat-time that I had devoted to my quest, I elected to wrap things up by extrapolating what the Two+ might sound like fully broken-in and asked myself 2 theoretical questions. Any chance they could sound as good as the Revel Performa3 F206 that were tops on my list? I thought that was a definite possibility. Any chance they might sound better? I could imagine different but not better. My impression of these not fully broken in Two+ was that they reproduced the musical instruments, including male & female vocals, very accurately up and down the frequency range but there was just something missing that I call "fill". I don't think "fill" is in the audiophile lexicon. Best I can describe this is: kind of a synergy or melding of all the good things a speaker can do. It was like the Two+ were doing everything right but somehow weren't putting it all together; like a barkeeper being just a tad stingy pouring a nice single malt. I'd love to hear a pair of these sufficiently broken-in and properly set up in a good listening room to see if this "fill" would be there. Something to keep in mind with these speakers is the need for outlets to plug those powered subwoofers into. I was prepared to plug them into separate outlets on separate surge protectors, rather than adding them to my power line conditioner.

Keep us posted, kiddo! I'm enjoying this quest vicariously. It's like a great page-turner! Good luck!

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The Train Leaves The Station!

I’m reminded of the part in the Flashdance movie when she asks: How did you do it? And the answer was “I just took a deep breath. And jumped.”

Nice start to your journey, TZ! Your choice of Holly Cole reminds me of the very good recommendation to check out Holly Cole’s “Temptation” CD by Thomas J. Norton. . Unearthly penetration and clarity. It is like you are right there in a small club with haunting acoustics. . I’ll take some time to check out your other music.

Did you listen to the Triton Reference with and without a sub? Do you use a sub at home (what type?) for music or just movies? If you like your speakers locked at 3 feet from the front wall (as opposed to the 4 feet you mentioned) to the baffles, a shop will move their speakers where you want. A foot may not seem like much but can make a deceptive amount of difference, especially with bass. I saw the Focal Kanta 2 on your list. If you get a chance (even though out of your budget) you might want to take a listen to the Focal Sopra No 2. It is very well reviewed and could afford you some bragging rights to have heard it. They DO kind of look like robots and I’m not so sure many women would love them but Focal put a unique approach into making

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Test Music

Got WAY too much time on my hands now that I'm retired! Thought I'd add this grist to the mill just for fun.

One of the records I used for years at critical listening auditions was "Tubular Bells" by Mike Oldfield but only when I was comfortable with the quality of the turntable & cartridge employed. The instruments used on that album are enough to give most speakers fits and break into a cold sweat! Glokenspiel, various Organs, all sorts of percussion instruments, Flageolet, Tubular Bells, etc. make most speakers run for cover. Most shops I'd walk into with that album would not allow me to command the volume for auditions. Wise move! Shop owners and/or knowledgeable salespeople usually insisted upon standing guard at the amplification source. Guess they wanted to protect their speaker drivers.

tz250
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Re: VERY COOL!
Old Audiophile wrote:

Sounds like fun, TZ, despite the limited listening room. Four foot placement from the wall seems odd for those speakers, in my view. I think 2 or 3 would have been plenty (wall to baffle). Can't say I've heard the GE Triton Reference but I did serious seat-time with the Triton Two+, powered by a Simaudio Moon NEO 340 IX, in a much larger listening room with its own drawbacks (e.g. WAY too chock full of other equipment). The Triton Two+ were the speakers I'd hoped to come home with because of their slender dimensions, relative to a right channel corner placement issue I have to deal with in my listening room (30' X 14'). Unfortunately, the ones I heard only had about 20 hours play on them. Regardless, I liked what I heard very much but thought they needed more break-in time. I A/B'd them with a pair of Martin Logan Motion 60XTi with about 40 hours play (also probably not enough) that sounded a bit better to my ears. Couldn't find another dealer within reasonable proximity who had a fully broken-in pair. So, after the many months of research and seat-time that I had devoted to my quest, I elected to wrap things up by extrapolating what the Two+ might sound like fully broken-in and asked myself 2 theoretical questions. Any chance they could sound as good as the Revel Performa3 F206 that were tops on my list? I thought that was a definite possibility. Any chance they might sound better? I could imagine different but not better. My impression of these not fully broken in Two+ was that they reproduced the musical instruments, including male & female vocals, very accurately up and down the frequency range but there was just something missing that I call "fill". I don't think "fill" is in the audiophile lexicon. Best I can describe this is: kind of a synergy or melding of all the good things a speaker can do. It was like the Two+ were doing everything right but somehow weren't putting it all together; like a barkeeper being just a tad stingy pouring a nice single malt. I'd love to hear a pair of these sufficiently broken-in and properly set up in a good listening room to see if this "fill" would be there. Something to keep in mind with these speakers is the need for outlets to plug those powered subwoofers into. I was prepared to plug them into separate outlets on separate surge protectors, rather than adding them to my power line conditioner.

Keep us posted, kiddo! I'm enjoying this quest vicariously. It's like a great page-turner! Good luck!

Your summary and analogy " It was like the Two+ were doing everything right but somehow weren't putting it all together; like a barkeeper being just a tad stingy pouring a nice single malt." exactly describes my experience with the GE Triton Reference.

The store's one and only demo room was extremely cluttered with "stuff" behind the speakers on the front wall. The owner was such a nice guy and I didn't want to ask him to move his "stuff" to accommodate me. Even though the room size and speaker positioning wasn't optimal, I heard enough of the Tritons to form a pretty good opinion for myself.

tz250
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Re: The Train Leaves The Station!
BluesDog wrote:

I’m reminded of the part in the Flashdance movie when she asks: How did you do it? And the answer was “I just took a deep breath. And jumped.”

Nice start to your journey, TZ! Your choice of Holly Cole reminds me of the very good recommendation to check out Holly Cole’s “Temptation” CD by Thomas J. Norton. . Unearthly penetration and clarity. It is like you are right there in a small club with haunting acoustics. . I’ll take some time to check out your other music.

Did you listen to the Triton Reference with and without a sub? Do you use a sub at home (what type?) for music or just movies? If you like your speakers locked at 3 feet from the front wall (as opposed to the 4 feet you mentioned) to the baffles, a shop will move their speakers where you want. A foot may not seem like much but can make a deceptive amount of difference, especially with bass. I saw the Focal Kanta 2 on your list. If you get a chance (even though out of your budget) you might want to take a listen to the Focal Sopra No 2. It is very well reviewed and could afford you some bragging rights to have heard it. They DO kind of look like robots and I’m not so sure many women would love them but Focal put a unique approach into making

Holly Cole's "Temptation" CD is great, I especially enjoy "Train Song" and a very interesting spin on Springsteen's number "Jersey Girl".

The Triton Reference did not have a sub attached to it and left me feeling like I wished it had played lower.

I do have an excellent sub at home, it's the Velodyne DD 18. Although quite large, this sub integrates with my Wilson Benesch ARC's superbly. The sub disappears in its position and the low frequencies remain exactly positioned in the soundstage, right where the sound engineer intended. The Velodyne comes with a microphone and software that allows you to tune it to your room and listening position. I cannot say enough good things about this sub and my entire system. If it wasn't for having to break out my portable camping chair to hear it exactly how I want it, I wouldn't be thinking of replacing the ARC's.

Also, without realizing it, I believe I've become a fan of hearing the fullness of low frequency sound. My old system, B&W speakers with a Yamaha amp, did not play as low as my current setup. I've probably become accustomed to hearing low, fast, tight bass.

My system at home is strictly for 2-channel music enjoyment. I'm not much of an A/V person and the sub is strictly used for music.

tz250
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Re: Test Music
Old Audiophile wrote:

Got WAY too much time on my hands now that I'm retired! Thought I'd add this grist to the mill just for fun.

One of the records I used for years at critical listening auditions was "Tubular Bells" by Mike Oldfield but only when I was comfortable with the quality of the turntable & cartridge employed. The instruments used on that album are enough to give most speakers fits and break into a cold sweat! Glokenspiel, various Organs, all sorts of percussion instruments, Flageolet, Tubular Bells, etc. make most speakers run for cover. Most shops I'd walk into with that album would not allow me to command the volume for auditions. Wise move! Shop owners and/or knowledgeable salespeople usually insisted upon standing guard at the amplification source. Guess they wanted to protect their speaker drivers.

As a teenager, I had my upper bedroom wall lined with album covers from an Album Cover Art book that was given to me and this album cover was up there. I haven't listened to this album since the 70's, listening to it now and never realized its sonic qualities until now.

I have to admit, I enjoyed reviewing my CD and album collection and determine which I would bring, which tracks I would listen to and why those tracks. Some of the tracks I chose don't necessarily play perfectly on my system and was curious to hear how they sound on other speakers.

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If it Helps?

The last few times I went shopping for audio toys I brought CDs with me. Turntables were scarce in shops several years ago and most who had them had low-end models I would never trust my vinyl with. In my most recent expedition (last spring & summer) most shops had a decent CD player that could be used for auditions. One shop owner handed me an IPAD and used a Bluesound Node 2i, instead of a CD player or transport. My first experience with this technology. Pretty nifty & convenient! I'd gone there to hear the PSB Imagine T2 which, unfortunately, sold out before my appointment. So, I spent about 3 to 3.5 hours listening to a pair of Martin Logan Motion 60 XTi, KEF, Spendor and Totum speakers.

The method to my madness is to bring about 7 or 8 CD albums with yellow stickies on each jewel case, identifying which tracks I want to hear. Rarely do I listen to an entire track. Rather, I listen to snippets of tracks that give speakers a workout (e.g. drums-especially brushes on drums; triangle; piano; cymbals-especially brushes on cymbals; horns-especially Tuba; pipe organ; etc.). My test kit usually includes instrumental works, male & female vocals, rock, jazz (new & old), acoustic stuff and a classical piece. I especially like using "Hiroshima" nowadays. Most of it is well recorded & engineered but I make a point of bringing one or two things I like that isn't, in order to hear how speakers handle that. The best speakers are revealing and some are merciless, in this respect. In a couple shops, an owner and a salesperson asked what was playing when I was listening to "Back On The Case" by Acoustic Alchemy. A young salesperson (probably late 20s, early 30s) was impressed enough with the music and the recording quality (Digital Master) that he asked to snap a photo of the jewel case with his cell phone so he could buy it later.

Don't know if this is how you go about this but thought it might be helpful.

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Re: If it Helps?
Old Audiophile wrote:

The last few times I went shopping for audio toys I brought CDs with me. Turntables were scarce in shops several years ago and most who had them had low-end models I would never trust my vinyl with. In my most recent expedition (last spring & summer) most shops had a decent CD player that could be used for auditions. One shop owner handed me an IPAD and used a Bluesound Node 2i, instead of a CD player or transport. My first experience with this technology. Pretty nifty & convenient! I'd gone there to hear the PSB Imagine T2 which, unfortunately, sold out before my appointment. So, I spent about 3 to 3.5 hours listening to a pair of Martin Logan Motion 60 XTi, KEF, Spendor and Totum speakers.

The method to my madness is to bring about 7 or 8 CD albums with yellow stickies on each jewel case, identifying which tracks I want to hear. Rarely do I listen to an entire track. Rather, I listen to snippets of tracks that give speakers a workout (e.g. drums-especially brushes on drums; triangle; piano; cymbals-especially brushes on cymbals; horns-especially Tuba; pipe organ; etc.). My test kit usually includes instrumental works, male & female vocals, rock, jazz (new & old), acoustic stuff and a classical piece. I especially like using "Hiroshima" nowadays. Most of it is well recorded & engineered but I make a point of bringing one or two things I like that isn't, in order to hear how speakers handle that. The best speakers are revealing and some are merciless, in this respect. In a couple shops, an owner and a salesperson asked what was playing when I was listening to "Back On The Case" by Acoustic Alchemy. A young salesperson (probably late 20s, early 30s) was impressed enough with the music and the recording quality (Digital Master) that he asked to snap a photo of the jewel case with his cell phone so he could buy it later.

Don't know if this is how you go about this but thought it might be helpful.

We both seem to possess a detailed oriented approach to evaluating stereo equipment. I pretty much do as you describe. Not only are certain tracks selected, but certain sections of that track are only played. I also play them multiple times at different volume levels to assess low level listening and high volume dynamics. I had forgotten to bring my "Circle of Drums" CD (Cheskey) which really tests the lower frequencies and a woofer's ability to provide slam and no bloat.

Last night, I listened to "Back On The Case", beautiful music and thanks for sharing.

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Holy Brontosaurus, Batman!

That is one serious quality mother sub ya got there, TZ. The fact that it is musical AND an 18 incher is no small feat. No mere WMD for movies.

Thanks for your Speaker Test music selections. Below are a few I put together that probe what a speaker can do (and maybe what it cannot. Somre out of usual Audiophile jazz but plenty of instruments performing well. Back On The Case is definitely great, I agree.

Jesse Cook- Double Dutch. Spanish guitar, steel drums and violin. If a speaker has bass limits this will find it.

Ginetta’s Vendetta- All Choke And No Slide. Sax, trumpet, piano and stand up bass takes turns showing what they can do. The key to A happy band.

Chris Botti- A Thousand Kisses Deep. Great trumpet and piano.

Alumbrar- Vekhavara & Simone Detailed guitar work

Keiko Matsui- Dream Seeker. Good Piano work.

Chris Botti- My Funny Valentine. From Ramsey Lewis’s Legends Of Jazz. A Must Own Collection.

Cannonball Adderly- The Work Song. A Virtuoso at work.

Essence Allstars- Cubano Chant

Joe Bonamassa- Boogie With Stu. Also features Reese Winans on piano. Formerly played for Stevie Ray Vaughn.

Stan Getz Meets Chet Baker- Jordu. What a pair at work.

Bru’s Boogie. Great separation of instruments by Dave Brubeck.

Andrea Bocelli- Time To Say Goodbye. A great way to test outstanding female (Sarah Brightman) with male (Bocelli) voices on a apair of speakers.

Gabriel Mark Hasalbach- Trumpet and Piano having fun

The Shadows- Apache. Hard to get smoother then Hank Marvin on guitar.

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Re: Holy Brontosaurus, Batman!
BluesDog wrote:

That is one serious quality mother sub ya got there, TZ. The fact that it is musical AND an 18 incher is no small feat. No mere WMD for movies.

Thanks for your Speaker Test music selections. Below are a few I put together that probe what a speaker can do (and maybe what it cannot. Somre out of usual Audiophile jazz but plenty of instruments performing well. Back On The Case is definitely great, I agree.

Jesse Cook- Double Dutch. Spanish guitar, steel drums and violin. If a speaker has bass limits this will find it.

Ginetta’s Vendetta- All Choke And No Slide. Sax, trumpet, piano and stand up bass takes turns showing what they can do. The key to A happy band.

Chris Botti- A Thousand Kisses Deep. Great trumpet and piano.

Alumbrar- Vekhavara & Simone Detailed guitar work

Keiko Matsui- Dream Seeker. Good Piano work.

Chris Botti- My Funny Valentine. From Ramsey Lewis’s Legends Of Jazz. A Must Own Collection.

Cannonball Adderly- The Work Song. A Virtuoso at work.

Essence Allstars- Cubano Chant

Joe Bonamassa- Boogie With Stu. Also features Reese Winans on piano. Formerly played for Stevie Ray Vaughn.

Stan Getz Meets Chet Baker- Jordu. What a pair at work.

Bru’s Boogie. Great separation of instruments by Dave Brubeck.

Andrea Bocelli- Time To Say Goodbye. A great way to test outstanding female (Sarah Brightman) with male (Bocelli) voices on a apair of speakers.

Gabriel Mark Hasalbach- Trumpet and Piano having fun

The Shadows- Apache. Hard to get smoother then Hank Marvin on guitar.

LOL

Yes, the DD-18 is a behemoth but it truly does disappear. Back in 2004, Larry Greenhill reviewed the DD-18 and the article can be found here: https://www.stereophile.com/subwoofers/604velodyne/index.html.

Thanks for sharing this list BluesDog. There were quite a few artists that I wasn't familiar with (Vehkavaara & Simone, Essence All-stars, Ginsetta's Vendetta and Jesse Cook). I have now added them to my streaming device...thank you.

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Update

Between work, house projects and running around with grandkids, there's not a lot of free time lately. But, I do have a June 2nd appointment with a Legacy Audio dealer in L.A. I'll demo the Focus SE, Focus XD and the Signature SE while I'm there, will let you know my thoughts on each.

Another speaker that has perked my interest is the Alta Audio Alec. I called and spoke to Alta Audio's founder/owner, Michael Levy. We discussed my room dimensions, amplification, musical preference and I listed what I believe is important to me in a speaker.

Have read enough reviews and seen enough YouTube videos to understand that people are very impressed with the Alec speaker. It checks off all the right boxes for me (tonality, frequency range, size & throw, etc...).

The problem I have is that Alta Audio is a small company and there is no dealer support, thus no demos out there. I'm the type of person that dislikes testimonial ads and basically that's all I have to go by with the Alec. Mr. Levy does offer a return policy and that makes the offer more possible.

Hope everyone is well, talk soon.

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The Iconic Maxel Poster Revisited

The Alec Altair looks like an interesting speaker. Definitely needs a strong (current) amp. Can’t help but think that a Legacy Audio speaker plus your take no prisoners sub can generate some serious audiophile wind. You’ll have to have the wife take a Maxel style poster style picture including a martini in hand.

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Too Much Bottom

There's no way I would use both the Velodyne DD-18 and any Legacy speaker together. The only time I would still use the sub is for speakers rated at ~30 Hz or so at the bottom.

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Understood TZ

Understood TZ. Should have been more clear about this as an image. In actuality not only is it ill advised but is very likely to completely rend the space/time continuum. I hope you have an enjoyable and fruitful journey in Legacy Audio country this week.

BluesDog
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Joined: Mar 17 2020 - 6:59am
Hi TZ. Hope all is well.

We have been wondering how your speaker quest has progressed? Is there any recon to report?

tz250
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Joined: Nov 24 2007 - 5:46am
Re: Hi TZ. Hope all is well.

Hi BluesDog - unfortunately, I had to cancel my appointment with James at Legacy Audio earlier this month. I will be back in L.A. in either July or August for my grandson's baptism and hope to find time to visit them then.

In the mean time, I'm still researching speakers (I do this even when I'm not in the market) and would like to demo some open baffle speakers. The idea of not having to manage cabinet resonance (like planar and electrostatic) has me curious on how they sound.

I'm also considering the used market place and scan Audiogon and US Audio Mart periodically.

On US Audio Mart, there was a fellow who was selling a pair of Legacy Audio Whisper speakers for ~$10k. He's located not too far from where my oldest son lives in Temecula, CA and may get a chance to visit him on my next trip. The Whispers are a semi-active open baffle speaker and the reviews look very favorable.

Still enjoying my current gear, got some down time yesterday for Father's Day and listened to Gary Burton's "New Vibe Man In Town" album in its entirety. This was Burton's first album as a band leader and it's mostly straight-ahead jazz, beautiful music.

All is good here, thanks for checking!

Catch22
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Joined: Nov 21 2010 - 1:58pm
I wonder how our old pal, Dup, is doing these days?

I'll never be able to hear the word Legacy without thinking of him.

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