Home of the Squeezebox™ & Transporter® network music players.
Page 5 of 5 FirstFirst ... 345
Results 41 to 49 of 49
  1. #41
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Posts
    321

    Speaker brands, etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by Antoniop View Post
    Hi Dave,
    My first intention was to buy a pair of floor-standing, just because I thought it gives a better sound and I prefer the look of it, but then with your advice I'll try some stand-mount speakers, preferably from B&W, it seems to be your favourite brand in England, certainly for a good reason, while here Focal is very popular and Jean-Marie Reynaud is famous but also more elitist.
    Hi Antonio!

    I do like the B&W 800 series, but both Focal & Sonus Faber make excellent stand-mounts too.

    I must confess I've never heard of the Reynauds - are they utterly esoteric?

    I stand by my personal experience that stand-mount speaker usually produce the better sound stage in a small listening room: floor-standing speakers tend to work best in larger spaces, & often need to be spaced away from any adjacent walls to give their best sound, which again is not really practical in a modest-sized room...

    I hope that you find some speakers that suit the kind of music you prefer, & your own musical appreciation!

    Dave

    P.S. It is an irritation that the forum software does not let you know you've exceeded its maximum number of words for a post until you think that you've finished - it's happened to me a couple of times & it can be difficult to prune your outpouring without losing the flow. Oh well, very little IS perfect in this life!

  2. #42
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Paris, France
    Posts
    140
    Quote Originally Posted by drmatt View Post
    Just to keep everyone guessing, I would personally recommend floorstanding speakers for music and there's very little need for a subwoofer.. I do have B&W in mind however..


    Transcoded from Matt's brain by Tapatalk
    Hi Matt,
    Thanks for this second advice. I'll try both anyway.
    LMS 7.9.0
    on Linux Mageia 5 and RPI 3
    1 SB3, 2 radio, 1 touch
    Plugins : Trackstat, Smartmix, MusicIP, ...

  3. #43
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Paris, France
    Posts
    140
    Quote Originally Posted by Golden Earring View Post
    Hi Antonio!

    I do like the B&W 800 series, but both Focal & Sonus Faber make excellent stand-mounts too.

    I must confess I've never heard of the Reynauds - are they utterly esoteric?

    I stand by my personal experience that stand-mount speaker usually produce the better sound stage in a small listening room: floor-standing speakers tend to work best in larger spaces, & often need to be spaced away from any adjacent walls to give their best sound, which again is not really practical in a modest-sized room...

    I hope that you find some speakers that suit the kind of music you prefer, & your own musical appreciation!

    Dave

    P.S. It is an irritation that the forum software does not let you know you've exceeded its maximum number of words for a post until you think that you've finished - it's happened to me a couple of times & it can be difficult to prune your outpouring without losing the flow. Oh well, very little IS perfect in this life!

    Hi Dave,
    I've never heard of the Reynauds too, they 've an excellent reputation but there are not many in the auditoriums. Focal are quite easy to find, for the less expensive products.

    Choosing a pair of speakers will be a loooong process for me, I'm not easy to make up my mind !
    Thanks again for your help
    Antonio
    LMS 7.9.0
    on Linux Mageia 5 and RPI 3
    1 SB3, 2 radio, 1 touch
    Plugins : Trackstat, Smartmix, MusicIP, ...

  4. #44
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    942
    In truth whatever you choose your ears will adapt to it and unless it's chronically ill suited to your tastes it will be quite enjoyable.


    Transcoded from Matt's brain by Tapatalk
    --
    Hardware: 3x Touch, 1x Radio, 2x Receivers, 1 HP Microserver NAS with Debian+LMS 7.9.0
    Music: ~1300 CDs, as 450 GB of 16/44k FLACs. No less than 3x 24/44k albums..

  5. #45
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Posts
    321

    Choosing speakers

    Quote Originally Posted by Antoniop View Post
    Hi Dave,
    I've never heard of the Reynauds too, they 've an excellent reputation but there are not many in the auditoriums. Focal are quite easy to find, for the less expensive products.

    Choosing a pair of speakers will be a loooong process for me, I'm not easy to make up my mind !
    Thanks again for your help
    Antonio
    Hi Antonio!

    I don't blame you in the slightest for wanting to take your time over speaker selection.

    Have you got the rest of your system in place? The kind of speakers that will be likely to sound best in your room are almost certainly 2-way designs (whether full-range floor-standers, or stand-mounts which will inevitably be slightly lacking in the bottom octave of the bass register although with compensating advantages which I hope that I have already sufficiently explained in my previous posts), & an incidental bonus because of this is that they are likely to present a relatively well behaved impedance load on your power amplifier because they usually have fairly simple passive crossovers.

    It is the capacitors & inductors in the crossover network which create the reactive portion of the loudspeakers impedance (the drivers themselves present a purely resistive load). The impedance of any speaker system will vary with frequency & it is often possible to find a published graph of impedance vs. frequency (either by the speaker manufacturer themselves or in a decently conducted review of them). No loudspeaker has a flat impedance curve, but there should be no pronounced sharp peaks or troughs since the effect of these is likely to become audible, at least with some programme material. Smaller wobbles & gentle rises or falls are much less likely to cause the kind of effect on a music programme that your brain will not quickly learn to compensate for (the science of psycho-acoustics is not an area in which I can profess any real technical expertise - suffice to say that it's a complex subject & one in which our understanding remains less than total).

    From your power amplifier's viewpoint, as it attempts to deliver its power bandwidth (that's power vs frequency) linearly into the loudspeaker, it is the reactive element of impedance arising from the speaker's crossover network that is the part which might cause some problems for a lesser amplifier. But the truth is that most amplifiers currently available are actually pretty good designs (the cut-throat nature of the audio industry has seen to that) & certainly power amplifiers with solid-state (bipolar or field effect transistor) output stages should have no difficulty as long as the impedance doesn't fall too low - such amps can be switched on with no speakers connected at all, but will expire rapidly should you contrive to short circuit their output - so going below their recommended minimum impedance rating carries the risk of creating audible instability (although they are unlikely to actually blow up! ). Valve output stages are the opposite - they will survive a short circuit without any problem, but will start blowing their output valves quickly if they have no load at all. They also tend to require more careful speaker matching & may have different taps of an output transformer for speakers of various nominal impedances. Some people swear by valve power amplifiers, but they then seem to spend half their life subsequently "rolling" tubes & switching speakers in a never-ending quest for nirvana: the MOSFET's in my Pathos amp are just fine by me.

    The practical matters arising from these issues: 1. it is always a good idea to switch all your gear off (& then give the capacitors in the power supplies a couple of minutes to fully discharge) before adding or removing any cables; 2. if you are using a solid state amplifier it is worth putting insulating tape around any metal parts of the amplifier or speaker posts that are still exposed once the connections are made (to minimise the risk of an accidental short circuit) &, if you make up your own speaker cables (as I do from decent oxygen-free copper speaker wire) it is also a good idea to offset the cable lengths of the +ve & -ve wires at either end so that if either end of your cabling somehow becomes detached it is much less likely that the now exposed plugs or wires will come into contact with each other; & 3. if you are using a valve amplifier, rig up some form of cable clamping at either end to make damn sure that neither end of the speaker cable can come loose...

    You will obviously have to audition your speakers at a dealership with demonstration facilities. High-end dealers will usually offer to let you then have your choice of speaker for extended home trial on the basis that you can return them in exchange for a different set from their supported brands if you are not satisfied within that trial period. This is good dealership practice, but also great salesmanship because firstly they will expect to sell at full retail price & secondly your replacement speakers (if any) will also be supplied at full retail price! In other words, they are guaranteed a high-margin sale as soon as you sign up for this "service". Your replacement choice would be limited to the range of brands that they offer, so you have also already narrowed your options.

    My suggestion is that you draw up a "long list" based upon reputable reviews & peer reports, & then see which of these can be demoed by dealerships within your accessible range. Then book a short in-house demo with no commitment & take along some favourite CDs that you are familiar with for a listening session at no obligation. Even if you like the sound, tell the dealer that you need to hear other brands that he doesn't support, & don't let them pressure you into a deal. Add the speakers you like to your "short list". When you think that you've auditioned enough brands & have completed your shortlist, then seek out a dealer who supports as many of your chosen brands as possible, so that you are purchasing without overly limiting your options. There still remains the risk that you may tire of the sound of your full price speakers after your agreed trial period is over.

    Or you can take my preferred route & try to get one of your short list speakers in "as new" condition (with boxes!) s/hand for a substantial saving on the retail asking price. If you tire of these, you should be able to sell them without substantial loss once you have located a similar s/hand alternative from your original shortlist (this may require some patience, but it is a cardinal virtue, lol). And so on.

    I've had my B&W805S speakers for 8 years now & am very pleased with them (although I had been unimpressed by some of B&W's other speaker ranges in the past). I try not to change my gear unless there is a genuine advantage to be gained in terms of musicality: I'd really rather forget all about it & enjoy the music...

    Good luck whichever path you choose!

    Dave
    Last edited by Golden Earring; Yesterday at 02:57.

  6. #46
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    942
    Speaker drivers are incredibly reactive to input frequency and this is what dominates the varying impedance of most speaker cabinets. Physics dictates this. It's easy to push a cone that's oscillating at its resonant frequency and very hard to push it significantly faster than this. The crossover electronics should not be a major part of this phenomenon.

    Not that any of this matters to the end user.

    One factor not thus far discussed is that in small rooms sitting fairly close to speakers you can wind up in a near field monitor type scenario, whereby the sound coming to your ears is predominantly direct from the speakers rather than standing waves or reflected off other room surfaces. Add in large amount of typical living room furniture and that means you can quite successfully have large speakers in small rooms, as long as you sit in the right place.. this probably explains why I get away with a pair of 804s in a small room fed by a Naim amp.



    Transcoded from Matt's brain by Tapatalk
    --
    Hardware: 3x Touch, 1x Radio, 2x Receivers, 1 HP Microserver NAS with Debian+LMS 7.9.0
    Music: ~1300 CDs, as 450 GB of 16/44k FLACs. No less than 3x 24/44k albums..

  7. #47
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Posts
    321

    Miscellania...

    Quote Originally Posted by drmatt View Post
    Speaker drivers are incredibly reactive to input frequency and this is what dominates the varying impedance of most speaker cabinets. Physics dictates this. It's easy to push a cone that's oscillating at its resonant frequency and very hard to push it significantly faster than this. The crossover electronics should not be a major part of this phenomenon.

    Not that any of this matters to the end user.

    One factor not thus far discussed is that in small rooms sitting fairly close to speakers you can wind up in a near field monitor type scenario, whereby the sound coming to your ears is predominantly direct from the speakers rather than standing waves or reflected off other room surfaces. Add in large amount of typical living room furniture and that means you can quite successfully have large speakers in small rooms, as long as you sit in the right place.. this probably explains why I get away with a pair of 804s in a small room fed by a Naim amp.



    Transcoded from Matt's brain by Tapatalk
    Hi Doc!

    I must confess that I have been bamboozled into thinking that the mechanical impedance of the speaker cabinet was a separate phenomenon (& I thought, a mostly resistive effect causing dissipation of unusable power as heat energy in the voice coil that is mechanically prevented from moving by the inertia of the air within the speaker enclosure) from electrical impedance. Perhaps I have misunderstood this.

    Your 804's are really not that much bigger than my 805's, & are probably less affected by being placed close-ish to neighbouring walls than larger floor-standers, although there must be some bass reinforcement from this.

    Studio oriented near-field monitors are intended for close range listening for sure (primarily by ensuring that the drivers in them integrate well at a very short listening distance), but the mixing desk one is meant to be sitting at when using them (which they would be sitting right on top of) would not ideally itself be jammed up against a wall. I think that this is a separate issue from domestic listening room acoustics, with respect.

    I'm not meaning to be unnecessarily argumentative, just seeking clarity myself really. As long as you're getting a musical experience that suits you, that's fine really...

    Dave

  8. #48
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    942
    Hey, lots to talk about and learn, always. Me too, I wouldn't like to imply otherwise!

    Yes, the driver plus its cabinet defines the resonance properties of the transducer and that defines the observed impedance much more than the crossover electronics does, I believe. If you have scope to test it, replace the speaker drivers with an 8 ohm resistor and look at the flatness of the impedance profile! I'm no expert, but you can't dismiss the physical resonance of the speaker cone.

    But.. the 804s are much larger.. the 805s have a single combined bass/mid driver while the 804s each have a pair of 6" woofers for bass alone and a separate 6" FST midrange, both in separate compartments within the body of the speaker. The bass section has a front firing bass port, which does certainly make the speaker less badly behaved in the corner of a room though. The 804 is the same diameter as the 805 though, so the midrange cabinet is broadly similar, though in the 804 it doesn't have to handle anything below 200hz..

    I have found that standmount speakers are more "resonant" in the deep bass to compensate for their lack of physical volume, which can produce a pleasing simulation of bass but is likely less accurate. I've usually found floorstanders actually have tighter but better extended bass response, even if there's no more sheer dBs on offer.

    I've also found that b&w midrange drivers open up a lot when they don't have to handle deep bass or if you bung up the bass port to provide a little more damping. I believe that's the same advantage the 804 has over the 805. You are no doubt getting the same effect by using subwoofers....!

    Cheers!

    Transcoded from Matt's brain by Tapatalk
    Last edited by drmatt; Today at 07:26.
    --
    Hardware: 3x Touch, 1x Radio, 2x Receivers, 1 HP Microserver NAS with Debian+LMS 7.9.0
    Music: ~1300 CDs, as 450 GB of 16/44k FLACs. No less than 3x 24/44k albums..

  9. #49
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Paris, France
    Posts
    140
    Quote Originally Posted by drmatt View Post
    Hey, lots to talk about and learn, always. Me too, I'm not implying otherwise!

    Yes, the driver plus its cabinet defines the resonance properties of the transducer and that defines the observed impedance much more than the crossover electronics does, I believe. If you have scope to test it, replace the speaker drivers with an 8 ohm resistor and look at the flatness of the impedance profile! I'm no expert, but you can't dismiss the physical resonance of the speaker cone.

    But.. the 804s are much larger.. the 805s have a single combined bass/mid driver while the 804s each have a pair of 6" woofers for bass alone and a separate 6" FST midrange, both in separate compartments within the body of the speaker. The bass section has a front firing bass port, which does certainly make the speaker less badly behaved in the corner of a room though. The 804 is the same diameter as the 805 though, so the midrange cabinet is broadly similar, though in the 804 it doesn't have to handle anything below 200hz..

    I have found that standmount speakers are more "resonant" in the deep bass to compensate for their lack of physical volume, which can produce a pleasing simulation of bass but is likely less accurate. I've usually found floorstanders actually have tighter but better extended bass response, even if there's no more sheer dBs on offer.

    I've also found that b&w midrange drivers open up a lot when they don't have to handle deep bass or if you bung up the bass port to provide a little more damping. I believe that's the same advantage the 804 has over the 805. You are no doubt getting the same effect by using subwoofers....!

    Transcoded from Matt's brain by Tapatalk
    Hi all, your discussion is bit too technical for me, but what I take notice from your excellent remarks is that the room size and characteristics have their importance, because showrooms are usually larger than my room and they can give a false impression at listening, so I shouldn't choose speakers too powerful. So sometimes the best is not the better (hum, is it correct english ?).
    On the other side, if I spend a lot of money (from my point of view, 2KÇ is a lot of money) on these speakers, I wouldn't like to have to change them if I move to a larger house, or I move them to a larger room. Everything is a compromise, as usual.
    As for the amp, I don't think I will have a valve amp, they're too pricey. I would be very happy with something like the Rega Elex-R, which has very good reviews. Is it powerful enough ?
    Since I already have a DAC (the transporter), that will be all my hifi investment for now.
    Cheers
    Antonio
    LMS 7.9.0
    on Linux Mageia 5 and RPI 3
    1 SB3, 2 radio, 1 touch
    Plugins : Trackstat, Smartmix, MusicIP, ...

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •