Best satellites set-help me decide

Discussion in 'Home Cinema Speakers' started by arielshiran, Feb 13, 2005.

  1. arielshiran

    arielshiran
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    Hi everybody,
    For over a month now I have been in the search after a 5.1 set of satellite speakers. I have listened to almost every set of speakers available (more than 25 sets...) but the decision is hard. The sets I am currently considering are:
    1) Anthony Gallo A'diva + a TR-2/MPS 150 subwoofer.
    2) M&K K5s, K7 as a center and a KX-10 subwoofer.
    3) Monitor Audio Radius 90s, 180 as a center and a 360/any other subwoofer.
    4) Mordaunt Short Genie.
    5) Mirage Omnisat.
    Other two good sets (maybe good choices in the past) were Kef's 2005.2 and JMLab Sib&Cub which I thought were good choices but now I think are not as good as the sets I mentioned (number 1-5).
    I have not listened yet to the new sets by Tannoy (Arena) and B&W (M-1).
    Assuming that all of these sets cost the same (or you have the money to buy each one of them), what set would you choose for a 25-30m^2 room to be used both for music (50% of the time) and movies (50% of the time)?
    Did you see any reviews on the Tannoy Arena/Anthony Gallo A'diva sets?
    Do you think it may be worth waiting with the purchase until a little more (new Titanium versions of Gallo's A'diva should appear soon, new Omnisat with metal finish cases should appear soon)? If not, what set will be your choice and why? Again, please don't take into consideration the prices of these sets and assume they all cost the same.
    Thanks,
    Ariel.
    :clap: :clap: :clap:
     
  2. arielshiran

    arielshiran
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    issue. I am sure many other users are facing such a dillema as well.
    Thanks,
    Ariel.
     
  3. arielshiran

    arielshiran
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  4. digisocialist

    digisocialist
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    Castle CC3 Compacts. I think you'd be mad not to include them.

    :)
     
  5. arielshiran

    arielshiran
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    as well. Please add them to the other sets and help me solve my dillemas. Please let me know the reasons for prefering one set over the others.
    Thanks.
     
  6. Joe Fernand

    Joe Fernand
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    arielshiran

    Tough call - lots of good products in your short list.

    You'll find plenty of M&K fans on the AV Forums - and even though the K Series are not on a par with the much more expensive loudspeaker systems M&K have made their reputation on they are still a very good option to consider.

    We supply a lot of the Anthony Gallo (AG) kit and I'd be tempted to suggest you consider specifying one x Due for Centre channel duties and depending on room size and budget a Velodyne sub (possibly with room EQ) to partner the AG satellites.

    You don't mention what your source, processing and amplification kit consists off - though I would say that no matter what your considering I'd put the M+K and Anthony Gallo kit a rung above the others in your short list as they have the ability to 'grow' with your system!

    If you plan to go above mid range with the electronics these two speaker set-ups hold there own with high quality source kit.

    If you want a slightly different sounding option to most in your short list then an Atlantic Technology Model 2200 system (possibly with the 4200 centre if budget allows) with soft dome tweeters makes for a very detailed and relaxing sound you don't achieve with an awful lot of sub/satt systems.

    See http://www.atlantictechnology.com/system_2200.htm

    Best regards

    Joe
     
  7. arielshiran

    arielshiran
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    the amplification would probably be Denon 2105/Marantz 5500/Onkyo 602 (I listened to the Yamaha 750 and the Onkyo 602 one vs. the other with the same configuration and the Yamaha started distorting the sound much earlier and sound quite bad compared to the Onkyo).
    Besides that, Joe, I understood from you that the M&K K5s and Gallo's A'divas are quite in the same level. What would you recommend out of these two? The Atlantic Technology speakers are too big for me, so they are not an option. Are the Gallos and M&Ks better than the Genie, Radius and Arena? If so, how come the Genies and not the Gallos/M&Ks got so many good reviews in many magazines? What is better to your opinion in those sets compared to the others?
    If anybody else has an opinion about this issue, I'll be glad to hear.
    Thanks.
     
  8. digisocialist

    digisocialist
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    How important is 5.1/6.1 to you in reality? It's very easy to get carried away with the latest trend, I did and thought I really needed a 5.1. sub/sat system, hence I went for the Castle Compacts. The reality for me however is that actually 5.1 is a nice to have and can be quite immersive for some movie moments... but the majority, in fact 95% of my systems use is 2channel stereo. I listen to music as soon as I wake up, before going to work, and as soon as I get home. I only watch a good movie on the big screen probably once/twice a week. I would be very mindful of your true listening habits. I suggested the Castles because they are a mid-range set which will serve surround duties well but are at a reasonable price point.

    I would be very tempted to spend some decent money on a pair of fronts, whether they're M&K's, AG's, B&W's, MA's... and throttle spending on your centre and rear channels (there will be many that disagree). I'm on the fence with sub's.. I think a decent sub can make a big difference to some listening modes.

    IMHO I now think spending £800 on the centre, rear & sub capabilities and only £350 on my 2 channel may have been a big mistake... though I have not yet received my centre, rears & sub as I'm waiting for Castle to finish making the cabinets! So, I may be won over yet, but my current thing is for 2 ch and I wish that's where my money had gone.
     
  9. arielshiran

    arielshiran
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    what you mean but to my needs a set of 5 satellites and a sub is enough and well suits my needs as well as the environment it will be located in and the physical space available.
    I'll be happy to hear what you think is the best of the sets I mentioned and why and your opinions about Mirage Omnisats as well (as these are different kind of speakers than all of the others).
    Thanks.
     
  10. Joe Fernand

    Joe Fernand
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    arielshiran

    The AG and M&K systems sound (to me) more 'complete' than the majority of 'built to a price point' systems - the AG in particular (from my experience) are capable of very high quality sound without sounding as if they are trying to hard.

    The near lack of cabinet in the AG A'Diva makes them audibly nearly invisible - you never 'hear' any cabinet resonance; its as close to a 'panel' sound as you get without going for Magnepan or Electrostatics.

    Add in a Due for centre channel duties and you'll be amazed at the results you achieve with the CDT HF unit.

    I also enjoy the Due's ability to operate as a high quality HiFi loudspeaker - with a decent sub underpinning them (in medium to large rooms) you can achieve very decent Stereo sound.

    Keep in mind the AG were not conceived as Home Theatre 'Satellite' speakers rather they are the product of the designers vision for a perfect HiFi speaker.

    I'll find some A' Diva reviews and get back to you - I guess the Micro's are the bigger 'news' for HT magazines as they are so small and the A'Diva's tend to get overlooked.

    Best regards

    Joe

    PS Digisocilasit - never listen to a pair of AG Reference3 :)
     
  11. arielshiran

    arielshiran
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    Two comments:
    1) The Adiva sounds much better than the micro (in my opinion) and this is the reason I didn't mention the micro as an option.
    2) How does the Adiva (which I understand are better in your opinion than the M&K K5s-Am I wrong?) perform compared to a set of Mirage Omnisat speakers? Which one is better in your opinion? The omnisat set got many recommendations all over the world (mainly UK, north america and germany) and are an interesting option as well I think.
    Let me know what you think about them.
    Thanks.
     
  12. Sulis

    Sulis
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    I'm interested in Joe's comments about the Gallos needing the A'Dué speaker for the centre. When I auditioned the Gallos the centre was definitely a weakness - dialogue was not nailed down. The Gallo sub also felt weak - a bit spongy - so a better sub sounds about right, too. I may give them another look...

    AFAIK, the Adiva uses the same driver as the Micra, just with a slightly bigger enclosure - so I wouldn't expect that much difference...
     
  13. arielshiran

    arielshiran
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    I am interested to know what sub was connected to the Adivas you heard (was it a TR-1/TR-2/MPS-150). I felt the same when the TR-1 was connected and the room wasn't so small. Regarding the difference between the micros and the Adivas, the Adivas are defined by Gallo as a set of speakers which can work without a subwoofer at all as opposed to the micros and to my opinion sound much bigger and with much better sub performance. I was impressed by the Adivas and didn't like the micros at all. Weren't you?
     
  14. Joe Fernand

    Joe Fernand
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    Hello all

    The Micro and A'Diva definitely have a 'family' sound and you can mix and match them - though the A'Diva is a more open sound than the Micro's.

    Using either model as a Centre Channel takes a bit of work - and best not to rely on any 'Auto Calibration' in your AV Receiver or set your Processor to an even gain across the Front three speakers; the Micro and A'Diva demand that you give them a bit more power when on duty as your Centre channel.

    The Due is an excellent centre - the CDT HF driver is brilliant at vocal reproduction and you get good coverage over a wide area not just a one (or two) seat 'sweet spot'.

    The AG TR1 is (for me) a cheap and cheerful sub - its good value at its SRP but not as clean as the Micro or A'Diva if your being subjective or want to push your system.

    The AG MPS150 in small to medium size rooms is pretty good for the money - though we often specify a more expensive SPL II from Velodyne to partner AG kit.

    I haven't used a TR2 as yet so cant say what its like.

    Best regards

    Joe
     
  15. arielshiran

    arielshiran
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    experience with Mirage Omnisat speakers and can compare them to the Gallos and M&Ks? Please tell us if you have demoed/used them.
    Thanks.
     
  16. Drew.Ri

    Drew.Ri
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    I listened to the Adivas a couple days ago and I agree that they sounded great. Unfortunately they were paired with a miserable sub, so that detracted from the experience.

    I have not listened to the Omnisat's, but I have listened to the nanosat's(same technology, just smaller and does play as deep, only down to 110Hz) a couple of times. When they were playing with a decent sub I really liked the sound from the Nanosat's. They create a big sound stage, so as I moved around the room I never felt like a left the sweet spot.

    In my opinion the Adivas (with the Due center) provided a slightly cleaner sound and more accurate sound imaging (for home theater). I did not listen to music on either system as I had limited time on my lunch break to pop in the store.

    Since the Omnisat works on a different technology, I suggest you listen to them yourself. I have seen many people state that they either love the sound or hate it, not much in the middle. For me, the Nanosat seems like a better deal because getting the Adiva's with the Due center and decent sub is way out of my price range.

    Also, I have heard a lot of people comparing the Orbs (www.orbaudio.com) to the Gallo's. Unfortunately I have not been able to listen to the Orbs, but my understanding from trolling through thousands of posts on many forums, is that they are very similar in sound to the Gallos, with a much better sub, for less money.

    right now I am looking hard at the Orbs, as well as the Nanosat's and Adiva's or micros. I haven't had much luck finding anyone who had actually listened to the Orbs as well as some of the other systems to compare them, but it migth be worth a look.

    Anyway, that my two cents worth, let us know what you decide and please pass along any other info you find on any of the speakers mentioned in the thread.
     
  17. arielshiran

    arielshiran
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    The issue is like this: I am about to move to a new appartment and since I do not consider myself as an audiophile, I decided to listen to good satellites sets and see if they sound good to me as their size is very good for my living room. The first sets which impressed me were KEF 2005.2 and JMLab Sib&Cub. Then I started to read reviews and pay attention to more and more sonic details. I listened to all of the sets with the same CD and the same tracks and as time passed, I understood that these two sets are good but there are better choices like: MA Radius, MS Genie, M&K K5s and Gallo A'diva. I haven't had the opportunity to listen to the omnipolar speakers by Mirage as there is no Mirage distributor near me (and there is also no Energy distributor near me). I liked all of them (the problem is I haven't had the opportunity to listen to any of these last 4 sets next to another as each one is sold by a different distributor) but realized that the Radius 360 and TR-1 subwoofers (as opposed to the M&K K10/KX10 and MS Genie Subwoofer) were too weak and therefore thought of combining the speakers with a REL/Velodyne subwoofer to solve the problem. I am sure that when the speakers will be at my living room, each of these sets will sound good but now I want to make sure I do the best choice and get the best value for my money. Where I live the Genie is the most expensive set but not in a big margin from the others (the Radius is the cheapest set and the M&K and Gallos are in the middle). Good reviews can be found on each of the sets. Therefore, I am confused and need your help. I can order the omnisats at a close price as well and there are also the new Tannoy Arenas and B&W M-1s around as well as the orbs I didn't know about. Gallo will soon have new Titanium versions of the Adivas (which probably will cost 10% more) and this makes me wonder if I should wait till their arrival. I understood from many threads here that no one doesn't love the Adivas but their problem is the value for money. If the prices are as I stated and I can afford any of these sets (or the new ones and the orbs) what should I choose? The receiver which will push the speakers will be (I guess) one of Denon 2105/Onkyo 602/Marantz 5500 and maybe Yamaha 1500 (as the 750 sounds much worse than the others in high volumes and distorts the sound).
    Please advice and let me know what you think will be the best buy considering the same (more or less) prices.
    Thanks a lot.
     
  18. Joe Fernand

    Joe Fernand
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    arielsharan

    Source > Processing > Amplification > Loudspeakers - that's my preferred system hierarchy.

    There are many ways you could go - as you've found out and I guess you have to decide is this a 'one off' purchase or will you upgrade the system over time.

    Sticking with AG/Velodyne for a moment I'd be sorely tempted to suggest you go back and listen to 1 x Due, 4 x Micro, 1 x SPL II sub and a Denon AVR-3805 - the AVR-2105 wouldn't do it for me with the more expensive loudspeaker line-ups your considering.

    Best regards

    Joe
     
  19. arielshiran

    arielshiran
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    The SPL II sub is too expensive for me and so is the 3805. I want a receiver which would cost to me about 450 pounds and a sub which cost like the CHT-R series by Velodyne or REL's Q150. I guess I can afford the receivers I mentioned or older higher models like: Marantz 7400/Yamaha 1400/Denon 2803 all of which lack the new PL IIX feature (which I don't know if is so important). What would you recommend in this prices?
     

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