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Best quality bookshelf speakers for under £1000

Napier

Standard Member
HI All,

I am looking for the best quality speakers for under £1000.

There is no better place than to come to you guys (and girls) :)

They need to be lovely to look at as they will be on show. I have been looking at the KEF LS50 loudspeaker, however the reviews are not outstanding.

Maybe I should look at another brand? I could stretch to £1500 for the right pair. These would be powered by a Denon AVRX2300W (pending purchase).

Any feedback much appreciated!!!

Dave
 

Ugg10

Distinguished Member
Your system will be badly matched imo. The Denon is a £350 amp with 7 channels. So average around £50 per channel being generous. spending ten times the amp price (2 channel) on speakers will not get the best of them, a £200 pair of speakers would give a more balanced system. The old addage, rubbish in rubbish out does work with hifi.

You do not say what your source is (cd, vinyl, streaming) and why you want a stereo pair of speakers for a surround sound av amp. Any more info would be useful. If you have a budget of £1500 (plus the original denon £350) for speakers and stereo amp I would look to spend around 60% on the speakers and 40% on the amp leaving a bit for decent speaker cable and interconnectors.

Something like the Cambridge audio cxa80 and focal 916 plus cables may fit the bill.

Also a bit of info on room size, type of speaker preference (bookshelf, stand or floor) and music taste will help us all give a clearer answer.

Sorry, a bit negative I've but hope it helps.
 

BlueWizard

Distinguished Member
... I am looking for the best quality speakers for under £1000. ...

... I have been looking at the KEF LS50 loudspeaker...

Maybe I should look at another brand? I could stretch to £1500 for the right pair.

These would be powered by a Denon AVRX2300W (pending purchase).

You are looking for Stereo Speakers, but why are you using an AV Receiver? I'm mean if that is what you want - fine - AVR's are rich in features. But most would recommend a Stereo Amp for Stereo listening.

You haven't really describe the full use of the system, and whether you intend full Surround Sound or just 2-channel or 2.1 channel.

The KEF LS50 are very good speakers, but they are what they are and are not what they are not. They should be exceptionally clear, but I would not expect rattle the windows bass.

So -

Give us the Dimension of the room the system will be in?

Is this a closed room or an open floorplan?

Are their any aspect of the room that might effect the placement of speakers? (typically a fireplace or Patio doors)

Stereo or Surround Sound?

Overall Budget for both Amp and Speakers?

Steve/bluewizard
 

davidf

Well-known Member
What area or areas are these speakers needing to excel in? A speaker under £1,000 can't be a master of all trades, and you're better off choosing one that suits your amplifier and your room.

With regards to the LS50s, I'm not aware of any reviews that are any less than very good at the bare minimum, so not sure which reviews you've seen. The LS50s are excellent speakers, but are critical of the accompanying amplification, so to get the best out of these, I'd usually be recommending a separate power amplifier with enough juice to supply 5 or 7 at the same time.

On that note, there are no £1,500 speakers that you should be considering with the 2300. Once you get to four figures, most speakers are far more demanding on the amplifier. If you end up with a speaker that the Denon can't properly drive and control, you'll be wanting to upgrade once the novelty of new speakers has worn off. I've seen it numerous times on these forums.

Usually, with receivers of £500 to less, I'd usually be recommending sub/sat packages like the KEF E305 or SVS Prime Satellite pack, as these are generally quite an easy load. For larger speakers, you need to avoid 4ohm speakers. I'd be looking at the Amphion Helium range of speakers, which are a nice easy load, and due to their waveguide and other aspects, work very well in a wide range of rooms, particularly rooms with bare walls or floors that are quite reflective - the Amphions reduce high frequency interaction with the room they're in. And quite noticeably so. You won't find too many dealers for these, but there's a good reason for that.

If you're looking at KEFs, I'd recommend the Q150 or Q350. Whilst these aren't quite as good as LS50s, they do still retain the general benefits of KEF speakers, but are a far easier load on the amplifier.
 

Southern soul

Active Member
Not sure the passive LS50's would be the best choice especially with your amp, as you say you can go to £1500 what about selling your amp and all other clutter and get the LS50 Wireless speakers?
If i were starting afresh this is what i would opt for.

Just a thought....
 

Cold blooded

Active Member
I can't recall a bad review of the ls50..... Very happy with mine but then I have them driven by a parasound Halo amp.... PLENTY of controlled power on hand.... They obviously have their limitations..... But the excellent imaging and their open midrange still astounds... BUT you'll get the best from them with better amplification
 

Napier

Standard Member
Thank you so much everyone for your replies!

To clarify, the room is long, its the width of my house (4 bed) - a new extension. I am struggling with how to apply decent sound in the room, it will be a mix of music and movies, all streamed from Synology NAS or Iphone. I see the Denons amps do streaming.

The Kef LS50 wireless would be amazing, however they are in excess of 2k at the moment, and I believe would still need an amp.

Also positioning is worrying me, if I have the speakers in the ceiling corners either side of the TV (far wall) then will music "fill" the room properly.

I think you can see I am a bit muddled :)
 

Hixs

Distinguished Member
Speakers don't go in ceiling corners unless it's a pub...

Actual dimensions are needed. Saying it's a 4 bed house doesn't work. I've seen new build 4 bed detached houses that would fit in the square footage of my upcoming open plan kitchen/diner.
 

DECKARD71

Active Member
Focal Aria 906 are very good and very good looking too
 

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