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Johnseye

Reference 2 Channel Speaker Recommendations

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Johnseye   
I think you had said you were going to checkout VAndersteen, I assume you meant the Vandersteen Quattro CT. Well over $10k but the built in subs are fantastic and they absolutely don't need anything else. The logistics of how to hook them up to receive a .1 or .2 home theater sub feed tho might not be very clean.

I was considering the Treo CT's. The dealer said he didn't have the Quattro's in store. He went into a long explanation on the phone of how they would be connected with subs.

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GUTB   

Lol, I went to that dealer in Dallas that carried the ProAcs, and I listened to the D-30R ($7k I think). I recall them being immediately engaging, harmonically rich and casting a wide stage. They were connected to high end Simaudio integrated and what appeared to be some high end cabling. In terms of detail retrieval...can't say it really beat my Chane 1.4s. And the Chanes are a joke compared to my Utopias, HE-6 and TH-900.

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Computer Audiophile

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Johnseye   
Me too, I am using JBL Studio 230, what are you using?

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]33191[/ATTACH]

 

Reference LSR305 studio monitors. This is my work and game PC. I'll listen to music but my DAC isn't connected to it. I'll also record music with it which is what the JBL and Steinberg are for.

 

20170211_104642.jpg

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Johnseye   
I also just noticed the power amp. I would highly recommend you check out the Odyssey Audio line of amps if you are trying to stay at lowish pricepoint. The guy that runs the company, Klaus Bunge, builds amps to order. His Kismet line is no slouch and can hold its own in comparisons with no compromise equipment like the Pass Lab XA series. Just ignore the power specs, they have more than enough dynamic power for just about any speaker, including maggies.

 

His website is down, maybe it's just temporary.

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Johnseye   
I agree with this 100%. Emotiva should not be used on any speaker over $1500 imo

 

Dynaudio, Pmc, Focal, Vienna acoustics, Paradigm, Sonus Faber, Martin Logan would be my speaker suggestions but try borrowing better amps/sources from local dealers and see if you can get more out of your B&Ws.

 

 

No Emotiva fanboys here are there. I will say that I haven't tried any other amps with my B&Ws so it's probably worth a shot. Going into a store where they're using Halo monoblocks to power their speakers doesn't give my B&Ws a fair shot. Looks like that will be the first step. Then I'll look at different speakers. Part of my plan was to put my B&Ws in the family room and the new ones in the theater room.

Well... I think spending $1000 on an amp would achieve that goal...with the right amp. Specifically I mean a Sunfire 300 x 2 or any of the Carver A Series on the second hand market. Don't get me wrong, I could do it with a $10K amp too, I just would prefer to spend less. The AV 505 is on the floor on the left in the pic below.

 

OP, if your current or future speakers are bi-wireable score this amp and I promise they will stand up and salute, check this link:

Carver AV-705x Power Amp 5 Channel | eBay

I have the AV 505 driving my JBL's and was simply astounded by the difference over my previous amp, a Parasound Zamp which is excellent.

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]33192[/ATTACH]

 

It looks like the Carver is a 5 channel amp as well. I would there would be some benefit to running a pair of monoblocks for the front two, and I can use the Emotiva 5 channel for the surrounds and center. Although it might change the color of the center with the front two. I'm also wondering if tube amps might be the way to go.

 

You guys definitely have me thinking now. I'm still looking to improve my speakers but it sounds like there may be better improvement from the amps.

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No Emotiva fanboys here are there. I will say that I haven't tried any other amps with my B&Ws so it's probably worth a shot. Going into a store where they're using Halo monoblocks to power their speakers doesn't give my B&Ws a fair shot. Looks like that will be the first step. Then I'll look at different speakers. Part of my plan was to put my B&Ws in the family room and the new ones in the theater room.

 

Product Review - Carver Premiere AV-705x Five Channel Power Amplifier

It looks like the Carver is a 5 channel amp as well. I would there would be some benefit to running a pair of monoblocks for the front two, and I can use the Emotiva 5 channel for the surrounds and center. Although it might change the color of the center with the front two. I'm also wondering if tube amps might be the way to go.

 

You guys definitely have me thinking now. I'm still looking to improve my speakers but it sounds like there may be better improvement from the amps.

The thing about the carver amp is the ability to steer power where it is needed and when it is needed. These amps were based on the Carver Lightstar amp using trickle down tech. OP if you can pick up that amp on Ebay for under $600 you might save $$$ on a need for a further upgrade. If you don't like it you can just flip it the same way you bought it.

 

Because of the power steering you can biamp your front two speakers and use the fifth channel for the center without any worries.. Check out the review.

Product Review - Carver Premiere AV-705x Five Channel Power Amplifier

Edited by witchdoctor

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when was the Carver made?

 

curious if it has any of the power supply smarts he put into his Sunfire amps

 

I think they made it until 2000, yes it has the same power supply smarts as the sunfire, this is one of the Carver A series. See Robert Greene's comments where he lists these amps among the 10 most significant of all time

 

The Ten Most Significant Amplifiers of All Time | The Absolute Sound

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Johnseye   
I agree with this 100%. Emotiva should not be used on any speaker over $1500 imo

 

Dynaudio, Pmc, Focal, Vienna acoustics, Paradigm, Sonus Faber, Martin Logan would be my speaker suggestions but try borrowing better amps/sources from local dealers and see if you can get more out of your B&Ws.

 

Well... I think spending $1000 on an amp would achieve that goal...with the right amp. Specifically I mean a Sunfire 300 x 2 or any of the Carver A Series on the second hand market. Don't get me wrong, I could do it with a $10K amp too, I just would prefer to spend less. The AV 505 is on the floor on the left in the pic below.

 

OP, if your current or future speakers are bi-wireable score this amp and I promise they will stand up and salute, check this link:

Carver AV-705x Power Amp 5 Channel | eBay

I have the AV 505 driving my JBL's and was simply astounded by the difference over my previous amp, a Parasound Zamp which is excellent.

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]33192[/ATTACH]

 

Looks like it is back up again.

Yup, thanks. I'll be driving through Indy this week so will have to swing by there.

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Johnseye   
I think they made it until 2000, yes it has the same power supply smarts as the sunfire, this is one of the Carver A series. See Robert Greene's comments where he lists these amps among the 10 most significant of all time

 

The Ten Most Significant Amplifiers of All Time | The Absolute Sound

 

It's shown up on ebay for around $200-300 recently. No balanced inputs limit its appeal to me. What in your opinion makes this a better amp than the Emotiva?

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It's shown up on ebay for around $200-300 recently. No balanced inputs limit its appeal to me. What in your opinion makes this a better amp than the Emotiva?

 

I'll speak to what I think makes this am unique in general, whichever amp you compare it with. The Magnified Current Technology can provide either twice the continuous voltage or twice the continuous current needed by the loudspeaker load at any given time. To my ear this makes the dynamics seem limitless particularly on complex music. It made my Parasound amp sound like the dynamics were compressed on this type of music. There is a big difference between just being loud and really having unlimited peaks. I think this is what the makes magnified current technology so good. Having everything on one PCB board without point to point wires also makes for a straight signal path.

 

The RCA connections are nice,each one has it's own gain knob above it so you can dial in the gain if you were using speakers of different sensitivity. For THX standards you leave all knobs all the way up, which is how I use mine. I don't think you'll miss XLR's and don't let the low price fool you. How do you think this line got on REG's best of list? If you can grab one at $200 to $300 that would be excellent.

av705pcb.jpg

Edited by witchdoctor

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Johnseye   
Have you looked into

Legacy Audio handbuilt in USA the studio HD monitors and the newer higher priced bookshelf monitor also both well below you 10k ceiling

Yes! They're on my list too.

 

Today I auditioned the Revel F208, Sony SS-NA2ES, and PSB Imagine T3's. This was through a Rogue Audio ST100 tube amp. The Revels sounded a lot like my B&Ws. The Sony's had great high end and decent mid but the lows were lacking. The PSBs sound very good. Well rounded, good bass. They're tri wired which is interesting. I thought they were the closest thing to the Paradigm Persons's I've heard but not as clear. After that I had to go back and listen to the Peraonas again. This was using the Parasound A21. They still sounded just as I described before.

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Ralf11   

my Sunfire has balanced inputs - Carver was one of the first people to create a power supply that could track the demand needed by the amp - "down-tracking convertor" or some such

 

I cannot say that this design is better than, as good as, or not as good as modern class D amps, or class G or H amps

 

not sure what the Emotiva does - they have a rep. for good sound and low reliability

 

Benchmark has an amp out now with new technology to reduce cross-over distortion

 

always try to buy from a place you can return the amp to when considering a SQ upgrade

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Johnseye   

After doing some power research I decided to buy the Benchmark AHB2. They have a 30 day audition period so little risk involved. I think it's the best way to determine if I can hear a difference between another amp and my Emotiva. The Benchmark was made with digital music in mind. It's supposed to be incredibly revealing with the lowest noise and distortion levels out there at this price point. My second option was, and still may be the Parasound A21.

 

That Carver amp was sold for under $300. I was very tempted, especially at that price point. I'll probably never know how good it is, but I suspect the Benchmark will be amazing, if it matters at all.

 

Back on to the speaker side of the coin. I gave the Legacy Focus SE driven by a Raven tube amp a listen over the weekend. I like this speaker a lot. A full, well balanced sound. Very good high end through an excellent low end. These have become my second choice pushing the PSB T3's down a notch. The only reason why they aren't #1 right now is that they're a little slower than the Paradigm Personas. The Personas are such fast and clear speakers. My problem is I can't find a dealer with the 3F's. I was able to listen to the 5F's but the 3 is one less woofer. Tomorrow I'll be auditioning the Vandersteen Treo CTs.

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nihilist   
my Sunfire has balanced inputs - Carver was one of the first people to create a power supply that could track the demand needed by the amp - "down-tracking convertor" or some such

 

I cannot say that this design is better than, as good as, or not as good as modern class D amps, or class G or H amps

 

not sure what the Emotiva does - they have a rep. for good sound and low reliability

 

Benchmark has an amp out now with new technology to reduce cross-over distortion

 

always try to buy from a place you can return the amp to when considering a SQ upgrade

 

I'm considering the 5f persona's. What was your impressions?

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Computer Audiophile

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Johnseye   
I'm considering the 5f persona's. What was your impressions?

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Computer Audiophile

 

The best speakers I've heard so far from what I've listened to. Speakers opinions are very subjective. The more I listen to different models the more I notice each one sounds different, and each person has a little bit of a different opinion. Some opinions have similarities, just as some speakers may have the same sound signature, but one person may like a clean sound with a lot of high end, another better low end response. So take opinions with a grain of salt and listen to em for yourself. That said, you should definitely listen to them, and bring some music you know well with you.

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Johnseye   

I drove through Indianapolis today and stopped by Tone Audio run by Mark Maryanovsky. A real stand up guy and great to talk with. He's a cellist in the Indianapolis orchestra and has started his store 30 years ago. He carries Vandersteen and Dali which led me there. I auditioned the Vandersteen Treo CT and Dali Rubicon 6. The Rubicon 8's would have been a better comparison but he didn't have them in the store. Both speakers were run with Ampzilla 2000 monoblocks.

 

I thought the Vandersteen's had a great, embracing, warm sound. A full tonal quality with low bass and decent highs. Mark compared listening to these as if you were sitting out in the seats in front of the orchestra. This was in contrast to the Dali's which were much more detailed but lacked the deeper lows of the Treo CT's. I think the Rubicon 8s with an additional driver would have compared better in the low end, but the Treo's have a bass port on the bottom which really fill the room. He compared listening to the Rubicons to sitting amongst the musicians in the orchestra, where you can pick out the individual instruments.

 

So depending on what your thing is, being in the crowd or with the musicians these are good choices for speakers. However, I didn't think the Vandersteen's were as good as the Legacy Focus SE's, noting there is about a $2k difference. I also didn't think the Rubicon 6's were as good as the Parasound 5F's, noting there's an $11k difference there and that's not really fair. However, I suspect that the Rubicon 8's and the Parasound 3F's would be closer in competition with a $2k difference. I can only guess without hearing them side by side, but think the Parasound are closer to what I'm looking for with slightly better accuracy, clarity and definition.

 

I still have the Focal Sopra to listen to, but as of now it's between Paradigm and Legacy. My Benchmark amp arrives on Thursday. I'm very curious whether I'll be able to hear the difference between it and the Emotiva. Someone said I wouldn't because the speakers I'm listening with aren't sensitive enough. How sensitive do they need to be? Only one way to find out for sure.

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