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Monitor Audio BR/BX2 or RX1?

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by Danrv, Aug 9, 2010.

  1. Danrv

    Danrv Member

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    Hi
    I'm considering upgrading my Sony SS-86E speakers for a pair of
    Monitor Audio's or similar,budget up to £400.

    System:
    Cambridge Audio 640C V2 CD player
    Rotel RA-01 amp
    Sony SS-86E speakers
    Atacama Nexus 6 speaker stands
    Good quality cables
    Most music styles
    Room is 12ft x 12ft

    I have a local Richer sounds who stock Mordaunt Short,Wharfedale,Tannoy
    but I've read some rave reviews of the MA Bronze and Silver series which
    Richer don't stock.
    I'm thinking of the Monitor Audio BR2 or BX2 which has a front mounted port,
    more suitable for corner positioning although I have my current speakers 20 inches from the back wall.
    I could stretch to the RX1 but this has a rear port and I'm unsure how this
    would fair with corner positioning.Are these too good for the Rotel?
    I'm pleased with the CD,amp and the Sony's come to that but think prehaps a speaker upgrade is in order.
    Any help appreciated.
    Dan
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2010
  2. PSM1

    PSM1 Well-Known Member

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    If you are looking at the MA speakers I would also include the Focal 705/706 on you demo list. When I compared the focal 700 series to the BR range a few years ago the focals were better to my ears. If you could afford more then going up to the 800 series would be even better.
  3. Danrv

    Danrv Member

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    Thanks
    Not sure where I can hear the Focals locally (Cambridge,UK).
    I'm limited to Richer Sounds and Sevenoaks.
    I've never actually auditioned any hi-fi before buying and have used WHF
    reviews and ratings and Google.
    Would make the effort though if spending £400 on a pair.
  4. BlueWizard

    BlueWizard Well-Known Member

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    There is an element of cost that you are ignoring here.

    BR2 = £165
    BX2 = £225
    RX1 = £400

    I've you've got £400 - spend it. All indications are the RX is well above the BR/BX.

    The BR however is a very good deal, typically selling for about £200.

    If you are looking for the best bargain you can get, then that would be the BR.

    However, if you are looking for the best speakers you can get, budget considered, then that would be the RX.

    Based on everything I've heard. The RX aren't just slightly better, they are very noticeably better than the BR/BX.

    For anyone looking at Monitor Audio, RX are in the sweet spot. A very good speaker, well above the BR/BX, but not as outragiously expensive as the Monitor Audio Gold or Platinum.

    In my opinion, if you can afford the RX, then you need to get them. If you can't afford them, then we move on to other options.

    In a similar price range, the B&W 685 (£370/pr) are worth a look. Indications are that these speakers have more noticeable bass; typically descibed as warmer. But, reports indicate that the RX are a real improvement over the RS, and are generally considered a very well balanced speaker.

    Personally, I'd scrape up £100 more and consider the RX2, but then I'm always scheming ways to get bigger speakers.

    The suggested Focal 700 series speakers (I've only heard the 800 series), I would except to be crystal clear. But the rated bass response on those is nothing impressive. If droning bass weight is what you are looking for, these are not the speakers for you.

    However, if clarity is the key, then certainly they are worth a look. I would personally rate them higher for Jazz and Classical, or more acoustical Rock/Pop. Basically any music that is not totally built around heavy bass lines.

    The suggested Focal 706V would be about £350 with a rated response of 55hz to 28kHz, which is not far off as bookshelf speakers go.

    Just a few thoughts.

    Steve/bluewizard
  5. Danrv

    Danrv Member

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    Thanks,very helpful.
    Popped into a local dealer that I'd overlooked today and they had
    the whole range of MA speakers plus B&W 685's,Wharfedale diamonds,Quads and Dynaudio.
    Firstly heard some modern rock on the demo Monitor Audio RX1's and straight away could hear the difference in quality compared to my Sonys.
    Not surprising given that they're four times the price.
    The chap kindly hooked them up to a Rotel RA-04SE which is similar
    to my amp.

    Sound was tight with big bass but not at all boomy and top was
    well controlled without any harshness.Can imagine these would
    go loud and maintain the sound quality.Very impressed.
    Also heard some mellow stuff and they sound smooth.

    Swapped to the Monitor Audio BX2's with the same track and noticed
    they were a little brighter but they were brand new and not yet run in.
    Also the tweeters were slighter higher due to the taller cabinet.
    Would've been nice to hear a run in pair of BX2's but they'd only
    arrived two days earlier.

    I think I'm leaning towards the RX1's as a result of being immediately
    impressed.
    Just hope they're not a bit overkill for my 12' x 12' bedroom.
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2010
  6. Danrv

    Danrv Member

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    Ok,got the RX1's in Rosenut and they look real nice with good build quality.
    As I heard from the demo in the shop the bass is big for a small speaker even
    straight out the box.
    Had them running for around 3 hours and have experimented with positioning.
    Not sure how much the sound will change as they're are run in but positioned
    a good 20" from the back wall and 12" in from the side,the bass is a little too overpowering.
    What is remarkable is how much the bass is reduced by using the bungs supplied
    which enables the speakers to be positioned much closer to the wall
    or corner.
    Monitor Audio recommend experimenting as much as you can with speaker positioning before using the bungs but I think I'm gonna have to use them.
    I did think about front (BX2) or rear port as the speakers do have to go in a corner but there's plenty of space round them.
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2010
  7. Danrv

    Danrv Member

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    They are overkill for my bedroom! Too much bass :( Have sold them and have now bought a pair of Dali Lektor 2's. Well pleased with them :thumbsup:
  8. BlueWizard

    BlueWizard Well-Known Member

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    Can you give us your opinion of the Dali Lektor 2's?

    Oddly, as bass obsessed as most speaker buyers are, there have been several who said the bass of the RX1 was too intense for them. And much like you, have sold them for more bass-modest speakers.

    But I have to wonder if this is more to do with the personal style of music and listening, or if the speaker really does have exaggerated bass. Most reviews indicate is does have solid bass capability, but none that I have read indicated that the bass is well out or proportion to the rest of the frequency range.

    In fact, one review (AVGuide.com) said -

    "Look further if: you require full and/or deep bass.

    Still, I'd like to know how the Dali Lektors are working out. I've been told they are very clear detailed speakers.

    Steve/bluewizard
  9. Danrv

    Danrv Member

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    Yes,you're right. I don't think that the RX1 has exaggerated bass but it did have in my room.
    When I heard them in the demo room they were placed in the middle of the room and the bass was deep but tight. I couldn't home demo so took a chance.

    I was surprised at the AVguide.com review saying "Look further if: you require full and/or deep bass".
    I listen to a wide variety of music and this maybe didn't help as I found the bass on the RX1's ok with certain music.
    The Lektors sound great although the finish isn't quite as good as the
    MA RX1's. I chose the Lektor 2's on the strength of the reviews and posts from owners.

    The speaker has a very good midrange which is important for vocals.
    Bass is certainly sufficient and I think it's helped by the corner positioning.Nice treble and never harsh.
    I need to experiment with regards to the stereo image.The vocal was more central with the RX1's. The speakers are on sand filled Atacama Nexus 6 stands with Atacama's own gel pads.
    They've only had a few hours use so I expect the sound to gradually improve.

    Dan

    Cambridge Audio 640C
    Rotel RA-01
    Dali Lektor 2
    Atacama Nexus 6 stands
    QED Qunex 1 interconnect
    QED XT Silver Anniversary spkr cable
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2010
  10. ranakirti

    ranakirti Member

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    danrv,

    thanks fro sharing your journey and experiences,... this has me worried though... as i'm planning a 5.1 setup based on a rx1. i'm having second thoughts now.... ;-(
  11. Danrv

    Danrv Member

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    If it's the RX1 5.1 speaker package I reckon that would be awesome for movies. If you use the RX1 standalone for 2 channel they need plenty of room round them otherwise the bass will be too much.
    Other than that,it's an excellent speaker with a smooth,tight sound.
    In my situation I was getting a 'boundary effect' from the walls due to the speakers having to be near the room corners hence I've opted now for the front ported Dali's.
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2010
  12. Abogere

    Abogere Member

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    I own the Monitor audio RS1 and im a fan, i love them, i have CA 640A oppo dv-980H feeding to CA dacmagic its great setup for a little bit above budget setup.
  13. ranakirti

    ranakirti Member

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    danrv,

    the speakers will be kept close to the wall where the projector screen falls...

    so are you saying that if the keep the rx1 in a 5.1 setup and i'm watching movies the bass wont be boomy. however when i switch to stereo listening then the rx1 will behave boomy.

    i cant move around the speakers all the time for 5.1 listening and 2 channel stereo listening....

    this is confusing.....
  14. Danrv

    Danrv Member

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    Sorry,I was thinking active sub with a crossover where the RX1 would only handle mid & treble frequencies.
    This is more movie territory. I'm not sure whether the RX1's would be operating full range on a 5.1 soundtrack.
    Prehaps someone else can help here.
    If you have a home cinema amp there would be more EQ flexibility than
    with a stereo hifi amp.
  15. ranakirti

    ranakirti Member

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    Will the RX1 behave differently during Stereo Playback ( Boomy ) & differently during Movie Playback ( Non Boomy )....?!?

    Can the more knowledgeable & expert members comment on this....??
  16. Passingbat

    Passingbat Active Member

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    If you're using stereo in a pure direct mode, you'll just be using the front speakers and no sub.

    In a movie, you'll be using the sub for frequencies below the crossover. Matbe your sub isn't boomy and the RX1 at low frequencies are.

    Have you followed the placement and use of port bungs instructions in the manual for the RX1s?
  17. ranakirti

    ranakirti Member

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    no no... i havent bought it as yet...

    i'm considering a rx1 5.1 package....

    but i read the rx1 is boomy.... so i'm confused.... is the rx1 boomy in stereo use only or will it behave boomy in 5.1 mode also...?!?
  18. Melosoares

    Melosoares Member

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    RX1 are great speakers, but can be a little boomy if not placed properly...

    They must be placed on good rigid stands and 55/60 cm minimum from the back wall

    If you can not place them at this distance from the back wall, then is better to choose front ported speakers like MA BX2...

    They are very good speakers, but need some care in their placement :smashin:
    • Thanks Thanks x 1

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