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AV8/P7 Speakers advice

Discussion in 'Arcam Owners' Forum' started by John Howard, May 17, 2005.

  1. John Howard

    John Howard
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    Hi, I am about to purchase an Arcam AV8/P7/DV29 combo and just wanted to know which speakers should I get. My room is 5 by 5 meters, at the moment I am planing to get one of these 5.1 setups:

    B&W 804S fronts
    B&W 805S rears
    B&W HTM4S
    ASW855

    OR

    KEF 203 fronts
    KEF 201 rears
    KEF 202C
    PSW4000

    OR

    Any other suggestions? Cost is not an issue.


    Also for the cables I am planing to get them either from chord or audio quest (haven't decided which models yet).

    Opinions & suggestions please, specially John Dawson.

    Many Thanks for your help :smashin:
     
  2. NicolasB

    NicolasB
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    If cost is not an issue, then why not go for 802S/HTM2S speakers? :devil:
     
  3. John Howard

    John Howard
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    Hi NicolasB, well I think the 802S/HTM2S are too big and powerful for my room :D
     
  4. Shaka

    Shaka
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    How about M&K S-150 front left/right/center, SS1-50 or Column Surround rears & MX 350 THX. I think apart from the Column Surrounds, the rest are THX Ultra certified. They sound phenomenal with movies and music.
     
  5. John Howard

    John Howard
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    Shakai:
    Thanks for the input,don't get me wrong my priority is performance and not size. I don't mind getting 803 or KEF Reference 205 If I am going to notice some difference in the volume levels that I am going to use in my room (please correct me if I am wrong so I don't regret it). I don't think the M&K can match the 203 or the 804.
     
  6. Shaka

    Shaka
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    Hi John,
    Have you heard the M&K S-150's ? They can go extremely LOUD despite their size. I can't remember of the top my head but I think they're rated at around 200W. There are a few variations of these: on-wall; in-wall, stand mounted and active version.
    I suggest you audition them and not just dismiss them based on their size. You'll be extremely surprised at the level of detail and dynamics these speakers can produce.
    Here's a review of the active version at Home Theater Magazine website.
    I had a demo of these a couple of weeks ago and was totally blown away by their performance. That was in a demo room roughly 6m x 9m and they could've gone a lot louder that what I had them at (pretty loud :D )
     
  7. flamingoboo

    flamingoboo
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    Hi John,

    I have an AV8, P7 and DV29, as well as three p1's. I am running some ATC scm35's, I thought that the p7 alone biamping the fronts would be enogh, but I was very wrong, requiring the p1 monoblocks. I would try to listen to as many speakers as possible if I were you. My favourite speakers are PMC 0B1's, absolutly fantastic, I was going to buy these myself, but the ATC's came up second hand for a very good price so I couldnt refuse. I did demo the old B&W 803's and 802's but for my ears need more than two channels of a P7 for sure. I also found the treble to be a little too prominent for my ears. Have you thought about wilson benech's?

    This is all very personal stuff, so just have a good listen.
     
  8. John Howard

    John Howard
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    Shaka:

    I'll give them a try.Were you referring to the S-150PK THX ULTRA in your demo?

    Hi flamingoboo,

    The sensitivity of the 0b1's according to their site is 87db and the Impedance is 6 ohms nominal, so do you think that they will be clear at low volume levels as the Kef 203 or the 804's?
    As for wilson benech to tell you the truth it's my first time hearing about this brand.Which range do you recommend ,the CURVE range?
     
  9. Shaka

    Shaka
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    John, in the demo I heard the S-150 THX Ultra which are the non-active versions. They were hooked upto to some Meridian kit. I found some reviews for them last week but can't remember where they are now. I'll try and find them again for you. Suffice to say, they received top rating.


    I found a review for the S-150's (non active versions):
    S-150 review
     
  10. VoltronUS

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    John,

    If you are looking for more choices, then I would suggest checking out the Gallo Reference3s. I have an AV8, DV29 and McCormack amps. The Ref3s are truly amazing but will not overwhelm your room. I was very close to buying 804s and other B&W speakers for center and rear, but the soundstage the Ref3s produce blew me away. The 804s have a great sound and are very precise but ultimately I found the sound to be too pinpoint-accurate and less engaging. I am using Gallo Dues for the center and back channels although the Reference Center is supposed to be coming out soon.

    One other consideration is the Gallo sub amp, which powers a second set of voice coils on the Ref3s and brings them down to 22Hz. The idea is to avoid the need for a separate subwoofer, and the hassles of trying to match them to the fronts, especially for music. I am looking forward to trying out the sub amp, which I hear is now shipping.

    Best of luck.

    V
     
  11. robfitzp

    robfitzp
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    John

    I would wholeheartedly recommend Wilson Benesch. I replaced a pair of N804 and a HTM1 with a pair of Curves, a centre and a pair of Arcs at the back and IMHO (and in my room) they are in a different league as far as clarity and control goes. They are also an easy load - 4ohm minimum - so the P7 would be fine. I have an AV8 and DV27A and briefly had a P7 so I know that the combination works well.

    Try and get a demo!

    Shaka

    Can you post your impressions of the Trivista 21 using the DV27A as a transport? Considering one of these or a Chord Dac64.

    Cheers
    Rob
     
  12. flamingoboo

    flamingoboo
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    Heres a silly question?

    What type of sound do you like john, and what reference points do you have in terms of other systems you have listened to?

    I have a very personal taste in "sound" myself and much prefer subtlty and layering to out and out shock and awe, I like a system that I can listen to for 10hours without fatigue. Others prefer a much more exciting and up front sound.

    Decide on what type of sound you like and it will be much easier to recommend speakers. Speakers are voiced much more distinctly to each other compared to electronics, so this is very important.

    Also how loud do you want to, or will you be running your system.

    Would you consider speakers that would sing better with more amplification.

    ?You also state that cost is not an issue? Can we start recommending speaker packages that cost around 80,000 pounds, or do you have a notional budget.

    I hope I havent confused you further.
    Bhusan.
     
  13. scott brown

    scott brown
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  14. John Howard

    John Howard
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    Shaka:
    Thanks I enjoyed the review, but I think the 203's & 804's are superior, what do you think?

    VoltronUS:
    Thanks for the input, the Ref3s look very promising but I don't like their design. So you prefer the Ref3s over the 804's, what about the KEF 203? Do you think the 203's are pinpoint-accurate too?

    Robfitzp:
    Why did you replace the 804's? it's seems from the posts that the 804's are not that good. The Curves and Arcs look sweet specially in black and silver. What do you think of the new A.C.T. and what about the KEF's?
    I'll try to get a demo of the curves and arcs.

    Flamingoboo:
    Well, I am not an audiophile and this my first real system(I used to upgrade my sony's all-in-one-theater-systems to the latest models till I got sick of them :rotfl: ). So I am gonna say I like very natural and clear sound. Also I like a system that I can listen to for 10hours without fatigue :D. Humm about loudness, I can't go for high volume levels cause of the kids adjacent room, so I would like to get a very clear sound at mid volume levels if that's possible.
    80,000 pounds :eek:, I would say 20,000 pounds at most for 5 speakers + subwoofer.Thanks Flamingoboo for taking the time to help.

    scott brown:
    Which speakers do you recommend to go with my setup?
    I am thinking of pair VR-2+ LCR-15+ pair of VR-1+ VR-S/1


    Nobody here have any AV8/P7 hooked up to the KEF's? And If you where to choose between the KEF's and the B&W's, which one will you choose and why?

    -John
     
  15. robfitzp

    robfitzp
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    John

    The 804 just never engaged me - sounded great on the end of a Krell fpb300 / wadia setup but not much cop in my room.

    Acts are lovely but IMHO would be wasted on the end of the AV8 etc - the electronics are just not good enough to warrant them.

    Not a fan of the Kefs myself, more on the way they look than the way they sound though as I have never bothered demoing them.

    Cheers
    Rob
     
  16. General Skanky

    General Skanky
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    Just seen this second thread.

    Seeing as your budget is quite accommodating, I'd definately suggest listening to 4 x ATC Active 20s + centre. No question. Subs can be of the lines of Velodyne,SVS and B&W top dogs. That will be a stunning system.

    The ATC 20s are amongst the best speakers in the world. You'll not need the Arcam power amp at all, but you'll gain in so many ways.
     
  17. scott brown

    scott brown
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    >>Which speakers do you recommend to go with my setup?
    I am thinking of pair VR-2+ LCR-15+ pair of VR-1+ VR-S/1 <<


    if you don't mind spending the cash, the VR4JR are really some incredible speakers. i own some vr-2s, but i'm semi considering moving to the vr4jrs. If i move into a bigger place, i think i'll do that for sure

    i auditioned all kinds of speakers (paradigms, totem, aerial acoustis, and especially b&ws) yet the von schweikerts really amazed me. i've got the vr2s as my fronts and an old pair of tannoys for rears. the vr1s would serve as great rears.

    check them out if you can. the low end is to die for on their full range speakers
     
  18. sticker

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    John,
    My pennysworth having the Kef setup that you're looking at.

    I demo'd the usual suspects, Kef, B&W, pmc, WB etc. For me the Kef's won out on every aspect but to be honest you wouldn't be wanting in any of the speakers that have been suggested to you.
    One word of caution I would add, is that the 203's sound better in a bigger room as I have found out since moving. If you can try out a set at home as you accoustics of your room may not suit them. What I also found is that whilst easy to drive they thrive on power and when I added the 2nd P7 and tri-amped the front soundstage, the improvement was substantial. It may be that the 203's are better on the end of a Krell or such like. Don't forget if you're looking at the B&W's to try the 805 sigs which are very good, in my view a lot better than the Kef 201's. Try also the PMC OB1 and Wilson Curves which Rob has suggested.

    One smal point IMHO is that the sub you've suggested is in a lot lower league than the speakers that you have in mind, you might want to aim a bit higher

    Regards
    John
     

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