Anyone tried the B&W XT4 speakers?

Discussion in 'Home Cinema Speakers' started by drunk monk, Mar 11, 2006.

  1. drunk monk

    drunk monk
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    Would like to get a 5.1 surround system. Thinking of the XT4 for the front speakers and XTC for the centre speaker. Are they any good? Ideally would like to spend less but needs to be slimline with good sound and looks ( as a compromise with the missus- the sober nun:devil: ) Any other suggestions?
     
  2. Knyght_byte

    Knyght_byte
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    if slim and missus friendly is the main order of the day then they are very good....

    if listening to quality sounding music is the order of the day on top of movies, then in my opinion they are not worth half the money you pay for them.......if its solely movies you want them for they may be worthwhile if they keep 'er indoors happy....lol

    ok, thats a little brief...heh...to expand.............

    initially, at a background volume listening level they sound nice, providing you use suitable amplification (not to mean lots of power, but just well matched, too much power in fact was not a good idea on these, Chord top end and MF top end amps made them sound even worse somehow, presumably by providing too much power)......fairly typcial B&W mid-high end kind of sound, just from more slender cabinets, leaning more towards warm than bright, nice for a bit of jazz or lazy acoustic as i call it(stuff like Nizlopi or Jose Gonzalez, if i got the name right for the second one..lol)....possibly a little slow for dance based beats...nice for hiphop tho, lends a good rich sound to it........classical/heavy metal type stuff tho was a mixed bag depending on the piece....some sounded very nice, sound sounded mediocre....

    so overall they cope in general with a mix of music and can sound very nice with some stuff......but now turn the volume up to a reasonably decent listening level (ie on your own but not quite so loud as to annoy the neighbours).......things are fairly similar, still good with the Jazz and acoustics, classical gained a bit of separation from the increased volume, hiphop is nice and bouncy altho doesnt bite so well as you'd like......

    now turn it up to a good old loud level listening.......arghhhhh....yuk.....on any kind of music the sound thickened to the point where i figured someone had released treacle in to the drivers.......classical became ploddy and somehow lost the separation, jazz became mired in a consistent tone almost, hiphop stayed nice and bouncy but more akin to a spacehopper with a very tiny puncture......and dance felt more like ambient....lol

    for movies they are ok, most speakers tbh can do movies, altho these arent exactly the most exciting, edge of the seat sound......possibly better suited to the (general, before anyone calls me sexist..lol) female environment of romance films, comedies and dramas than the typical male haunts of action, war, Asia Extreme, obscure Polish life studies and Disney big budget cartoons.....

    in my opinion, if they sold for £800 and i had a WAF to consider, i might get them for movies sake.....but not for music....sorry, but my £800 GR10's wipe the floor with them and then some.....and certainly the MA GS20/60' or B&W 704/3's continue wiping the floor then throw the XT4's out in to the street like the discarded elongated, aluminium coke can wannabes that they are......

    equipment tested with them was Primare AV, Roksan Kandys, MF KW range, Chord (two different setups, sorry, cant remember models now, something like 3300 or 3600 or 2600 doh).....um, Arcam and something else that slips my mind now.....

    media was the usual suspects with films (SW2 and Gladiator) and various music ranging thru the styles mentioned........oh and this is on a couple of occasions, both when they had only had them in a few days and also when they'd been fully run in and used for a month quite heavily....

    looks (for me) 3/5 (if WAF involved) 5/5
    build 4/5
    movie sound (for me) 3/5 (if WAF involved) 4/5
    music sound (for me) 1/5

    so 11/20 if just me considering buying them
    or 14/20 if i had a WAF to consider

    so either 3/5 if rounding up or 4/5 if rounding up overall.....

    they lose 2 on looks for me as altho they are modern and shiny etc, its a little forced...
    they lose 1 on build because despite being heavy they are also tall for the footprint and tbh need to be secured to a larger base than the tripod feet they have....otherwise they are solid as hell....
    lose 2 on movie sound as i like things to have punch and zing and strident wooshes, with concrete breaking having a nice crisp sound.......these tend to provide those sounds in a more rich and warm way, which some people prefer, but not me...
    and they lose 4 on music sound because they are nothing like what i like......but also at loud volumes they really are quite dreadful in any regard.....

    so to summarise, good speakers for the right person, but definitely a speaker thats only going to appeal to certain rather strict criteria (mainly WAF..lol)......so to you they may actually prove suitable.......me personally? i'd never spend that much money on them (my points rating btw is based on their value at the £1,700 price......however even if they were halved to the similar price as my GR10's i still wouldnt buy them as their sound isnt what i like, they only score fairly high due to looks and build....)

    anyhow, do go listen to them, my review might be offputting but thats my own opinion of them (ok, and most of the staff in the shop who rarely demo them now, only when the buyer mentions the missus has the final say..lol)......

    if you'd like some nice looking speakers that may appeal to the missus, Monitor Audio's GS20's in piano black lacquer, oh wow, they really do mean piano black lacquer, i havnt seen a speaker as sumptuous looking as these.....with the nice dulled silver drivers its a gorgeous contrast......and soundwise they kick bottom! altho you do need a nice bit of amplification....they are not slimline tho, they are a normal floorstander size (not massive tho)...and of course the black finish helps make them more slender....

    i dont know personally any other speakers similar in size/looks to the XT4's so you might wanna wait till someone else comes on........only other ones i know are the Monitor audio Radius 270's.....effectively 2 price classes down from the XT4's, however tbh not far removed in quality of sound...lol

    oh btw, one last thing, you might want to check out the smaller XT's in the range, i havnt heard those so they might be better value/sound......i'm only going on the XT4's....

    hope this is helpful...if you managed to read it all...heh, i get carried away sometimes
     
  3. NapoleonGuitarSolo

    NapoleonGuitarSolo
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    Hmmm, I listened to the XT2's today. Not a proper audition, just took them to a quite part of Seven Oaks S&V in Wolverhampton.

    I was hoping that these babies would be my saviour but you've got me worried now.

    I did audition M&K Xenon LCR35's with SS25's at the side and I think a VX850 sub.

    These sounded pretty good with movies. I thought the LCR35's sounded okay with music but perhaps a little lifeless and I don't think the sub was particularly musical.

    So I was planning to go back and audition the XT2's properly. They look nice and I hoped would sound fairly good. Reckon 2 of these plus the XTC will pull the wall down mind.

    The price for a 5.1 setup with the PV1 is £2896. I plan to audition the mission elegante e80's at Creative audio in Shrewsbury. That would save me about £800.

    Anybody got any views on these?

    I'm kind of downgrading. My current front consists of Ruark Talisman floor standers. I don't really have room for these and need something smaller to hang on the wall. However , I'm used to these very decent speakers so something like the MT30 package is not going to cut the mustard.
     
  4. klacey

    klacey
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    I have a 5.1 setup in the xt series and i couldnt be more happy with them.
     
  5. Booger

    Booger
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    To the Dude who wants to downgrade, DON'T DO IT !!!!

    you will be sorry, becuase with sound quality you can't go back....

    I gave up (at the girlfriends insistance) a perfectly good Mission Cinema 7 series to get a Cabasse (CrapAss) XI series which look nice, but sound terrible.

    NowI have got rid of the girlfriend and looking for some new speakers :thumbsup:

    Does anyone know if the XT4's are Bi Ampable ?
     
  6. RustyZip

    RustyZip
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    :rotfl: Lol - i know what you mean...
    With me it was Marriage Vs HiFi...
    Well Im here aint I !!!! :smashin:

    Women are the musical equivalent of Amstrad.... :D :devil:

    Anyway, more seriously, i dont think they are bi-wireable, take a look at the diagram on page 2 of the user manual on this webpage:-

    http://www.bwspeakers.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/products.models/label/Model XT4

    Cheers..
    RustyZip
     
  7. Knyght_byte

    Knyght_byte
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    this was covered in another thread, but peeps dont search before they post quite often...heh
     

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