New house, new lounge, new HiFi

Davinostubob

Novice Member
Hello, I'm new here and would love some advice.

We recently moved house and gained a rather large lounge (7.3m x 4.3m) that we won't be putting a TV in.

I want to buy a dedicated HiFi that fits the room & my (I would say our...but won't) needs.

I'm willing to spend in the region of £4-6k

I've always been into HiFi but never owned anything of note besides my Campfire Audio Solaris 2020 IEMs.

I mainly stream music from Tidal but also have a large vinyl collection that I'd enjoy playing again.

I listen to lots of different music, but it's mainly electronica, ambient, rock/metal.

I love full bass (within reason) and don't mind v shaped sound.

I'm 'allowed' floor-standers & open minded about setup.

Item's I like the look of:

Naim Atom / Uniti Star all-in-one player

Dali Opticon 8 MK2

Dali Rubicon 6 C System with BluOS Module

Yamaha MusicCast VINYL 500

I've only done a little digging, so the items aren't cherry picked.

I'm not against a more traditional component setup, I just don't know where to start.

Many thanks,

David
 

Helix Hifi

Well-known Member
V shaped sound is usually B&W, not Dali. Dali are neutral speakers, but for some the treble is bright.

Naim I know nothing about, sadly. Just heard they are rhythmic, with dynamic, fun sound.
 

Helix Hifi

Well-known Member
I would check out Monitor Audio speakers in the same price class as the Opticon 8 MK2. They are great sounding speakers. The sound is different then Dali. Not as full sounding in the bass as Dali, but a lot more forward deep bass.
 

Helix Hifi

Well-known Member
If you are going to buy the Dali speakers then the Hegel H190 is killer system.

Then it depends on if you want room correction like Nad, Lyngdorf. Build in bass management, which could make things easier if you are going to add subwoofer. Also build in streaming.

Amplifiers with good build phone stage are usually Marantz, Rega. The Marantz Model 30.
 

Hear Here

Active Member
Naim Atom / Uniti Star all-in-one player

Dali Rubicon 6 C System with BluOS Module

I'd take a look at NAD and Bluesound all-in-ones. They include BluOS control software and (most) have phono input for your vinyl if you decide to include a turntable. Not sure what you mean by a speaker system with BluOS Module, but you don't need it with NAD or Bluesound. Good luck. Peter
 

TB Rich

Active Member
Assuming you don't want to get in to a separate pre/power/dac/streamer etc with vast numbers of boxes and cables (because then the list is endless!), something like:
  • KEF R7 - £2k on offer with 20% off for a trade in, but assume you could buy any cheap used speaker for a few pounds to qualify).
  • NAD M33 - £4k
  • Project Debut Carbon Evo - £500 (I'm not a vinyl guy mind but seems well reviewed).
-----
£6.5k
-----
Alternative speakers, KEF R3 (£1k on same offer) and 2 x SVS Micro 3000 (£2k)
Alternative amp, Lyngdorf TDAi-1120 (£2k), depending on streaming services you might want to add a Bluesound Node to that (£550).
-----

Definitely put the KEF on the audition list though, I personally found it the perfect balance between the various traits offered by various speakers, B&W not just bright but edgy/harsh, Monitor Audio pleasant but too recessed and laid back. Dali are good in my limited experience with them, more upfront like a B&W but without the harshness, I bet higher end models like those Rubicon-C's with the wireless BluOS module would be a very interesting proposition.
 

Hear Here

Active Member
I'd also suggest you look at good used units. I recently bought speakers that could have been priced at £6K for just £2.2K - a fantastic bargain. Likewise perhaps look for a used NAD M32. Recently superceded by the M33, it is still a fantastic all-in-one, but look for one with the BluOS module included.
 

musicphil

Active Member
A trip to your quality audio shop for some demo's on equipment that syncs together.

Then a home demo is a must.
Enjoy the experience and let your ears decide.
 

Yorkshire AV

Active Member
AVForums Sponsor
^^

Go and see your local HiFi dealer and maybe even travel out a little - we all do something a little different.

You'll quickly ascertain what you're into and what you're not!
You can then get to try say the DALI Sound Hub with some active speakers, vs the passive with an appropriate amp etc.

Vinyl - take some records with you and "assemble" the system with the dealer :)

You've got a healthy budget and there's some brilliant combinations out there.
 

Hear Here

Active Member
Go and see your local HiFi dealer and maybe even travel out a little - we all do something a little different.
If the dealer has demo units, he is very likely to offer them to you at a healthy discount. He doesn't like time wasters who ask for shop or home demos but have no intention of buying, at last from him, so asking to purchase his demo unit is often good with him. He enjoys a big markup anyway, so can afford to discount, particularly if it's his demo unit. I ask got 25% off a new item, sometimes sucessfully, but even 10-15% is likely good for him and you. If you don't ask, you don't get. Just ticking an item from a website to put it into your Basket is silly, unless it's Amazon!
 

dogfonos

Well-known Member
Picking up on Yorkshire AV's comment on active speakers, that's the way I'd go.

You won't go far wrong with a system based around the HEDD Type 20:


Eats a lot of your budget at about £3600/pair but that includes 900W/channel of quality amplification. And they're not floorstanders so allow around £100 -150 for decent stands. These actives will give plenty of volume and stunning bass depth and clarity in a 30sqm room - perfect for electronic music or any other genre, come to that.

The speakers are available in a white or black 'rubberized' finish and are now in Mk2 guise with a phase linearizer incorporated into the speaker, unlike the Mk1 model.

There are other excellent active alternatives in this price bracket from Dynaudio, Adam, Genelec, Neumann but I think these HEDDS are the stand-out model.

Note they certainly don't have the 1970's style "V" shaped frequency curve so if that's a preference, best look elsewhere.
 

Paul7777x

Distinguished Member
The first thing I’d do is ring Analogue Seduction and book a demo of these.

I doubt you’d need to look elsewhere.

Two of these.


This.


And two of these.


I think when you’ve heard a properly integrated, room corrected, full range system you’ll be hooked.

White and two blacks available.
 

Paul7777x

Distinguished Member
If you’re set on floorstanders then you could audition these with the Lyngdorf 1120.

Over budget but quite something else by all accounts.


 

gava

Active Member
The first thing I’d do is ring Analogue Seduction and book a demo of these.

I doubt you’d need to look elsewhere.

Two of these.


This.


And two of these.


I think when you’ve heard a properly integrated, room corrected, full range system you’ll be hooked.

White and two blacks available.

That seems like a very good idea. Probably impossible to beat.

Let's start from what I believe to be the 2021 state of play:
With a modicum of care DACs and Amps and CD players are essentially solved problems. Streamers are not solved in terms of feature set, but in terms of quality they are.

Assuming decent care and due diligence in selecting your source, the two things to focus on (which will account for almost all of the quality of the system) are speakers and DSP/Room correction.

In your price range there are two obvious candidates that take care of Streaming+DAC+Amp+DSP:
  • Lyngdorf TDAI1120
  • NAD C399 (newly announced but on paper superb and trusted brand)
Floorstander + sub options:
  • Lyngdorf TDAI1120
  • KEF LS50 Meta
  • 2x KEF KC62 subs

  • Lyngdorf TDAI1120
  • QAcoustics Concept 300
  • 2x BK P12-300SB-DF subs

  • Lyngdorf TDAI1120
  • DynAudio Special 40
  • 2x BK P12-300SB-DF subs

I do think best value is obtained with speakers + stereo subs, but if you really want floorstanders then there are options.

Floorstanding recommendation:
  • NAD C399 (for its extra power)
  • QAcoustics Concept 500 speakers or
  • KEF R11 speakers
Active Floorstanders
  • Buchard A700 + Hub
 

Yorkshire AV

Active Member
AVForums Sponsor
There are waaaaay more options than the above. You're literally consolidating the entire HiFi portfolio into 1 or 2 streaming amps. The TDAI1120 whilst a good amp and gets a lot of praise on AVF, has it's limitations too and there are many more products that deserve some recommendations.

There are amps out there such as:

Primare i35 Prisma, Primare i15 Primsa, Leema Acoustics Quasar, HiFi Rose RS201e, Roksan Attessa with BluOS, Quad Artera, audiolab 6000A Play, Marantz PM etc - all which do something a little different and all at different price points. The Leema would power the most commanding of speakers with absolute ease.

If you like the look of the DALI's - i.e. you're picking 3 way speakers here with ribbon tweeters, perhaps also look at the Monitor Audio Gold 200, the ELAC Solano floor standers or the ELAC VELA FS407.

Other actives speakers: System Audio Legend 40.2.

Given the need for a turntable - either get an integrated amp with a phono stage or get a dedicated phono stage into an analog amp. Integrated units are generally "ok" but there's little to no adjustability in them and as you grow with vinyl, having the ability to change the cartridge and modify the phono configuration becomes a little more important. Do consider the effective mass of the table too. You're able to explore more "in the groove" with better compliance with mass.

Turntables such as the Debut Carbon Evo are a good starting point and a strong seller with good recommendations. But if you're wanting to step it up, the X1 or X2 offer something very different both sonically and aesthetically. Then you have the "solid state" vs "tube" debate for your phono stage :)

Again - so many options out there but until you start and listen, it's hard to give you options as literally, it'd be the internet dumped into a thread :D

Things you should go and try and figure out:

  1. "All in one" vs components. You may like the functionality of BluOS (the Node streamer) but prefer the sound of the Primare amp.
  2. Sound: warm, netural, bright, forward, relaxed. What components then support your preference?
  3. Passive speakers vs Active
  4. Bookshelf vs Floor standing. If bookshelf, do you like the addition of subs or not?
  5. Furniture: is this going on a rack, a sideboard, something old or something new?

As mentioned - a trip out to a hifi shop will help you navigate the above quite quickly. HiFi is incredibly subjective - every customer that walks through the door hears different things in the same equipment.
 

musicphil

Active Member
It is funny when someone asks a question regarding new piece of equipment and the Lyndorf constantly gets thrown at them.😂
It is a decent amp but it's designed for room issues and brings with it other issues.
There are so many better amps out there.
But the OP really needs to listen to various pieces of equipment and what sounds good to them, as Yorkshire AV quite rightly says hifi is subjective.
Listening time with various pieces of equipment is all that is needed so the OP can reach a balanced system that so that each piece of equipment is in sync with each other.
 
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Paul7777x

Distinguished Member
It is funny when someone asks a question regarding new piece of equipment and the Lyndorf constantly gets thrown at them.😂
It is a decent amp but it's designed for a room issues and brings with it other issues.
There are so many better amps out there.
But the OP really needs to listen to various pieces of equipment and what sounds good to them, as Yorkshire AV quite rightly says hifi is subjective.
Listening time with various pieces of equipment is all that is needed so the OP can reach a balanced system that so that each piece of equipment is in sync with each other.

Some people will always prefer square wheels.
 

DT79

Distinguished Member
It is funny when someone asks a question regarding new piece of equipment and the Lyndorf constantly gets thrown at them.😂
It is a decent amp but it's designed for a room issues and brings with it other issues.
There are so many better amps out there.
But the OP really needs to listen to various pieces of equipment and what sounds good to them, as Yorkshire AV quite rightly says hifi is subjective.
Listening time with various pieces of equipment is all that is needed so the OP can reach a balanced system that so that each piece of equipment is in sync with each other.
I don’t think anyone would argue against any prospective buyer home demoing a number of different products to see what suits them best, but I think Lyngdorf gets mentioned a lot these days because quite a few people on here have a Lyngdorf and they seem to have a very high conversion rate of home demos to sales from what I can gather from reading threads here (for which there is probably a very good and very simple reason…) and it’s probably creating a bit of a snowball effect on recommendations.

It’s a little misleading to say that Lyngdorf amps ‘are designed for room issues’ - they’re an amp with a room correction system built in (because to a greater or lesser extent every room does have issues). You don’t have to use Room Perfect, although everyone tries it and then does.

What ‘issues’ do you think they have?
 

dogfonos

Well-known Member
When someone posts on a forum requesting ideas for a new music playback system, as Davinostubob has (though I note he hasn't explicitly asked for suggestions, that's surely the implication), interested forum members reply with suggestions they believe to be a good option/solution for the OP's requirements.

Should an individual responder believe one particular piece of gear could be the solution, it would be remiss of them not to mention it, wouldn't it? It doesn't matter how many times a person suggests the same item if they consider that item to be a good solution. If others don't agree, then it's up to them to suggest alternatives.
 

Davinostubob

Novice Member
Oh wow, so much advice & suggestions!

I wasn’t getting any notifications & presumed no one had replied.

I don’t have time at the minute to look into these suggestions, but will.

Attached is a photo of the room (with 2 year old!)

Speaker placement is going to be tricky as we’re having a low unit / corner fire added on the far wall & large corner sofa in the middle of the room. Would wall mounted speakers each side of the large window be a huge compromise?

I had been thinking the speakers (be it floor, wall, or bookshelf) would be at the far end of the room…but the main seats on the sofa face towards the window.

All decisions have to be filtered through a busy family living room!

Thanks guys, appreciate it.
 

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dogfonos

Well-known Member
Would wall mounted speakers each side of the large window be a huge compromise?

I doubt it. There are a few wall-mounted (and in-wall) speakers on the market these days and their acoustic behaviour is designed for such positioning. May I refer you to post#12?

a rather large lounge (7.3m x 4.3m)

Quite often, in a large room such as yours, it's best to position speakers along the longest wall so that they "fire" across the width of the room rather than down their length. The issue you may have is that the window is wide and may space the two speakers further apart than is ideal. It is said that speakers usually sound best when they form, approximately, an equilateral triangle with the listening position. TBH, there are too many variables at play for this to be a hard-and-fast rule (room acoustics, speakers' sonic characteristics, personal preferences etc) but it's a useful starting point:

Arguably, in-wall and wall-mounted speakers will often have a more predictable in-room sound quality than free-standing speakers because the boundary conditions are a given (unless mounted very close to a side wall).
 

Call me Candy

Well-known Member
That's a healthy budget.
You can defiantly try out some decent kit.
One piece of advice that I have heard quite a bit is to spend a greater part of your budget on speakers.
That sort of money will allow you to reach out for some impressive brands like ATC, PMC & Spendor amongst others. Enjoy the process & trust your own ears.
Look forward to hearing about your hi fi adventure!!!
 

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