Dali Zensor 7 - honest opinion

Discussion in 'Hi-Fi Stereo Speakers' started by Kulev, Jun 28, 2018.

  1. Kulev

    Kulev
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    Hello guys!

    As I'm planning to purchase a pair of Dali Zensor 7, please share with me your opinion about them. Are they really that bright and shrill as some of the members here describe them? Is the bass enough or is it on the thin side? Thanks.
     
  2. Jaded1

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    I listened to a set of these only yesterday. They certainly do not lack bass and I would not call them bright or shrill either. There's plenty of scale in there. My only complaint would be that the bass muddied the sounds a little but still there's plenty going on with these speakers.
     
  3. muljao

    muljao
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    Can I just ask if they are reported to be bright and shrill by people why are you even considering them. There probably twenty other options in price range that may get reviews that seem to fit more in with what you'd prefer. I'm not being smart, I am assuming you might be in a similar geographic location as myself and have to basically decipher as best you can the type of component something is without the ability to test too many options
     
  4. Paul7777x

    Paul7777x
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    I’ve heard the 5s. Nothing bright about them at all. Certainly not shrill!

    Also, I’m not sure where you may have read that as I’ve read an awful lot about the newer ranges of Dali speakers and I’ve not heard that mentioned even once about any of them...?
     
  5. larkone

    larkone
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    You will never know what a speaker truly sounds like until you get it into your room. What works in one room may not work in another.
     
  6. BlueWizard

    BlueWizard
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    A speaker can be on the Bright side without being shrill.

    Dali Zensor 7 playing Kenny G


    Listen to the crisp drum snaps.

    Dali Zensor 7 playing Peter White


    Good brightness comes in the form of crisp detailed sound.

    For contrast, here are the previous Dali IKON, which are now replaced by the Opticon, one line above the Zensor. If you have decent speakers, you should be able to hear a difference in the highest Treble because of the Super-Tweeter in the Ikon.

    Dali Ikon 6 mk2 playing Cheryl Wheeler


    Dali Ikon 6 MK2 playing Renaud Garcia


    As far as the potential for the speakers to sound muddy, that is going to be down to placement. If you have them in the corners or pushed back against the wall, you are not going to get crisp detail. The sound is going to be muddied and blurred. How muddied will depend on the exact placement in the room.

    Notice in all the videos, he has the speaker well away from any boundaries.

    The best thing you can do is go out and hear the speakers.

    Steve/bluewizard
     
  7. Kulev

    Kulev
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    Thanks for the answers guys. Just one more question that is torturing me. I had a chance to listen to the Zensor 3 and I found the highs a little too aggressive. Is that the case with Zensor 7? Will they become mellower after the burn-in period?
     
  8. larkone

    larkone
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    They both probably have the same tweeter. Were the zensor 3s you heard run in?
     
  9. Jaded1

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    The Zensor 7 will have similar qualities just on a bigger scale. Perhaps Dali's aren't for you and you need to look at something more warm and natural (although again Dali's aren't known for being bright)

    I think you'll find that other popular brands, such as Q acoustics, Monitor Audio even more bright than Dali.

    If you want bass or and more neutral sounding then my suggestion would be seek out some Wharfedale or Missions.
     
  10. BlueWizard

    BlueWizard
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    If you want a very smooth sweet speaker at a price similar to the Dali Zensor, at least look at the Wharfedale Diamond Series -

    Wharfedale Diamond 11.4 (2x150mm (6")) - £780/pr -


    Wharfedale Diamond 11.4 Walnut Pearl Floorstanding Speaker (Pair) - Floorstanding Speakers - AudioVisual Online

    Wharfedale Diamond 11.5 (2x200mm (8")) - £999/pr -

    Wharfedale Diamond 11.5 Blackwood Floorstanding Speaker (Pair) - Floorstanding Speakers - AudioVisual Online

    And if you can afford to go a bit more -

    Wharfedale REVA-4 (2x150mm) (6")) - £1295/pr -

    Wharfedale Reva 4 Gloss Black Floorstanding Speakers (Pair) - Floorstanding Speakers - AudioVisual Online

    Steve/bluewizard
     
  11. DrHarvey12

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    Hi @Kulev

    I've previously owned a complete set of Zensor's comprising Zensor 7 fronts and Zensor 1 rears. More recently I moved to Zensor 3 rears. And probably you can see from my sig that I have now gone to a Dali Opticon setup.

    In relation to your questions:

    Are they bright and shrill?

    I certainly wouldn't describe them as shrill...ever! I would put them slightly to the bright side of neutral. Partnering electronics is absolutely key. I found a Pioneer AVR to be too bright for me with the 7's. I would say I am more affected by listening fatigue due to brightness than most. I then moved to a high-end Yamaha receiver which was a big improvement. Yamaha's are typically considered very neutral. More recently I have transitioned to a 7.1.4 setup and required a receiver that would handle processing for such. I ended up getting a Denon X7200WA and that to me is a match made in heaven. Beautifully detailed highs without any of the listening fatigue. Everyone's tolerance and preferences will be different so YMMV.

    Will they get less bright?

    It was quite a while ago that I first had the 7's. I do recall enjoying their performance more as time went on. Whether that was a break-in period or whether it took me a little longer for me to adjust to their performance I can't really tell.

    Are Zensor 3's going to be less bright than the 7's?

    I would think they would be identical. As others have pointed out a Zensor 3 is basically a Zensor 7 with a smaller cabinet and one less bass driver. The soft dome tweeter and I would imagine the partnering electronics will be identical. The 3's never sounded overly bright to me but then I never ran them at the front and so didn't really do any critical listening to them in that regard. Again, I think this may come back to partnering electronics. Maybe ask to listen to the 3's again on a Marantz / Denon amp?? I assume they will have similar warmth to their receiver line however that is conjecture on my part - I don't know anything about hi-fi electronics.


    As others have pointed out there is a LOT of choice when it comes to speakers at this price point. Listen to a few things and go with what sounds best to you based on your partnering equipment. I personally fell in love with the Dali's when on my first trip to RS I came across the Ikon 6's. I couldn't in any way afford anything like them at that point and so bought some Eltax Hollywood 5.1 HTIB kind of setup. It wasn't very good! I never got over the Dali's though so getting the Zensor 7's was my first step on the road and I absolutely loved them. I wouldn't have said they were lacking in bass by any stretch but neither were they boomy sounding. Highs were rendered much more cleanly than my previous Mission 7 speakers and the instrument separation was decent. I never got to the Ikons as they were fazed out before I really was in a position to ever afford them. Having the Opticon's is like the spiritual successor though and I truly love them. I may be disposed to love them more than a critic would because of that first experience listening to them all those years ago. But they make me happy and that is what is important to me. They sound terrific as well even if I have had to be a little more careful with partnering electronics.

    I guess my point is go with whatever speakers puts a smile on your face and makes you happy. Whether getting the best sounding speakers is the only key driver or whether looks / brand may also be a factor. Whichever you like the best!
     
  12. scol78

    scol78
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    I have recently sold my Dali 7's.I found them very bassey in a 14 x 14 room, wooden floors.
    Good speakers but too big for my room.I now run PMC twenty 23s with a Cambridge 851A and N
     
  13. Kulev

    Kulev
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    Hello guys,

    Wanted to update that I have bought a pair of Dali Zensor 7 and think they're fantastic! At the moment I can only listen to them on low to medium sound levels as the highs are very intrusive. Should I expect the tweeter to become smoother after a couple of weeks? My amp is Pioneer A-30-K.
     
  14. Hixs

    Hixs
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    Could be your source material, amp or even your room acoustics. It could even be that the volume is just too high. I like to turn the volume up occasionally (up to around -10db) and that works for some artists/tracks but sounds dreadful on others.
     
  15. Paul7777x

    Paul7777x
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    Your amp is under powered for the 7s. That won’t be helping.

    Also Dali strongly recommend that their speakers are not toed in so if you have them like that then alter their position to fire straight out.

    And have you made sure you have the speakers wired in phase? That is, the positive output form the amp (red) to the positive (red) input on the speakers?

    It’s easy to make a mistake.
     
  16. DrHarvey12

    DrHarvey12
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    This is really important and would be my main guess as to the possible issue.

    This is usually more of an issue for Dali systems using the hybrid tweeter module whereby the ribbon tweeter exhibits very strong horizontal dispersion and so not toeing in is even more important.

    I ran my 7's with no toe-in and can't remember the highs being too bad once I had swapped to the Yamaha and then later on the Dali. I did see you are using a Pioneer stereo amp and as I think I mentioned earlier I had to change out the Pioneer I had as I found it too fatiguing.

    You may find that the tweeter becomes a little less harsh, whether that is mechanical break-in or listener break-in (ie: you will get used to it)! I doubt it will substantially change though, at least I don't remember mine massively changing. Swapping the receiver did immediately improve things in my case.
     
  17. toon10

    toon10
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    I auditioned the Dali 7's with my Yamaha amp. I was very impressed with the sound. I wouldn't say they lack punch. I went for the Monitor Audio silver 6's in the end as I found they had a tad more mid range and top end clarity but it was a close run thing and I couldn't argue if someone chose the Dali's over the MA's. Personal preference but definitely worth an audition.
     
  18. Smoking Joe

    Smoking Joe
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    I bought the Zensor 5 late last year, and I would never say that they are bright! So I would only imagine the 7s to be even better.
    But one think that I will say is when I got them home I was shock at how bad they sounded! Thinny, lacking bass and sounding like tin cans.
    I was shocked! WTF?!?!
    The manual like all speakers say that they should be broken in for approx. 100 hours. But none of my speakers in the past really needed this.
    But these Dalis did! After a few weeks they started to sound better and better and now sound lovely. So I always wonder in shops if you are listening to ones pulled straight out of the storeroom or ones that are fully broken in? If the 5s that I auditioned sounded as bad as my new ones I would have laughed and walked away.
     

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