Question Recommend for speakers with forward sound signature for dialog/singing.

Tension255

Standard Member
Hi guys,
Kindly asking for help with a speakers for living room (~ 30 m2), which previously utilised an Audiolab M-dac and a pair of Yamaha HS8s (yes, the 8 inch white monitors....). The bass of HS8s is so strong for us that they were barely used. Ideally a pre/amp +white passive speakers or white active speakers, so we can still use the M-Dac. with a forward vocal signature (6-7 inches).

The new speakers (6 - 7 inch passive or active ones) are mainly for the TV (optical directly) or analog from m-dac. We would prefer some speakers with a forward sound signature for dialog/voice/singers/TV shows, plus a deep but not huge bass. We have been trying KEF ls50ws (from a friend) for a couple of days and found the voice is not that forward compared to the HS8 and bass is just fine. The issue with ls50w is that we need to turn the volume up a bit to hear the voice, which normally comes with unwanted louder bass.

No amplifier yet, we choose the speakers first and then go for the amp. Budget will be as less as possible < 2000 Euros. Thinking about Dynaudio x18+ Hegel h95, Xeo 20 (seems also has a laidback sound) or Dali Oberon 3 (no clue) or something from B&W..... Keening to hear some suggestions based on our listening experience with the HS8 and KEF ls50. Store-visiting is blocked by my wife ......

Thanks a lot guys.

T.


--------------updating after audition -----------------

After trying most of the speakers recommended below, we finally picked up a pair of KEF R3 owing to its better balance between music, vocal and bass (very subjective and only applicable to our ears). Now digging into the integrated amps, trying to pick up either Yamaha RN803 orArcam R250.
 
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Nico72

Active Member
In my experience, Monitor Audio RS1 were more forward compared to other speakers (in the sense that they project voice closer to the listener) and they had generous bass for the size. The modern day equivalent would be the Silver 100.
It almost sound as if you need some form of EQ in your chain, or at least tone controls.
some Marantz amplifiers come with separate tone controls for bass, mid and treble.
 

Ugg10

Distinguished Member
Couple of suggestions - did you try the HS7, my son has these and they have much less bass than my Mackie HR824 and will provide the upfront nature that the HS8 give you without so much bass. Plus did you reduced the bass on the HS8 using the room level switch on the back setting it to -4dB, pulling them a little off the wall may also help? Finally, as you still have the HS8 try the -4dB, pull them awy from the wall and put a pair or two of rolled up sock in the rear port. If this keeps the mids you like and reduced the bass you can then get some proper foam plugs or just sit back and enjoy. An hour of your time experimenting has got to be worth it.

You can also play around with the -2/0/+2db treble switch to see if this improves things, the +2db setting should make them even more forward sounding.

Another similar active that should provide good clear mids is the new Tannoy Gold 7 with its concentric/coaxial speakers.
 
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Tension255

Standard Member
In my experience, Monitor Audio RS1 were more forward compared to other speakers (in the sense that they project voice closer to the listener) and they had generous bass for the size. The modern day equivalent would be the Silver 100.
It almost sound as if you need some form of EQ in your chain, or at least tone controls.
some Marantz amplifiers come with separate tone controls for bass, mid and treble.
Awesome! Thanks A LOT for pointing the Monitor Audio RS1 out. I am a bit worried about the bass as they are 8 inches. I see no 6-7 inches from Monitor Audio. May I ask for some suggestions on 6-7 inch ones?
 
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Tension255

Standard Member
Couple of suggestions - did you try the HS7, my son has these and they have much less bass than my Mackie HR824 and will provide the upfront nature that the HS8 give you without so much bass. Plus did you reduced the bass on the HS8 using the room level switch on the back setting it to -4dB, pulling them a little off the wall may also help? Finally, as you still have the HS8 try the -4dB, pull them awy from the wall and put a pair or two of rolled up sock in the rear port. If this keeps the mids you like and reduced the bass you can then get some proper foam plugs or just sit back and enjoy. An hour of your time experimenting has got to be worth it.

You can also play around with the -2/0/+2db treble switch to see if this improves things, the +2db setting should make them even more forward sounding.

Another similar active that should provide good clear mids is the new Tannoy Gold 7 with its concentric/coaxial speakers.
Thanks for helping out! I have sold the HS8 and do not have a chance to try the settings any more...... Indeed, HS7 seems to be a wise/reasonable choice. Only that we have been seeing the HS appearance for several years and we may need something well - look different if possible sound better , ---- that's how I persuaded my wife and got the money !!!!! ;-)
 

Tension255

Standard Member
Besides the Monitor Audio S100, would there be any other cheaper choices allowing me to save some POCKET MONEY ?
 

Nico72

Active Member
Awesome! Thanks A LOT for pointing the Monitor Audio RS1 out. I have been looking at them but have no clue if they are forward of laidback. Now I think they could be very good candidates. BTW: Shall Marantz AMP drive them well?
If you want to try passive speakers, Marantz and Monitor Audio should be a good match.
Depending on budget, the PMA 8005 (which has tone controls for bass, mid and treble) paired with Silver 50 or Silver 100 should sound good.
How close to the rear wall will you place the speakers and what size is you room? Rear-ported speakers like some air around them.
 

Nico72

Active Member
Besides the Monitor Audio S100, would there be any other cheaper choices allowing me to save some POCKET MONEY ?
A second hand pair of RS1 or RX1 for £200-300. Also you need to save some budget for some solid stands.
 

Tension255

Standard Member
If you want to try passive speakers, Marantz and Monitor Audio should be a good match.
Depending on budget, the PMA 8005 (which has tone controls for bass, mid and treble) paired with Silver 50 or Silver 100 should sound good.
How close to the rear wall will you place the speakers and what size is you room? Rear-ported speakers like some air around them.
Maybe Silver 50 is better for us considering the bass generated. Our living room is about 30-40 m2. The back of the speakers can have 30 cm distance from wall, hope they can breath well....
 

TommyDog

Active Member
Look for some PMC 20/22 or 20/21.... They will give you what you want 👍. There are some deals to be had on those at the moment. Have a look at Fanthorpes website 😉
 

Ugg10

Distinguished Member
As per post by @TommyDog -

The amp (says it is an VA receiver but it is a stereo receiver with HDMi inputs) which includes room correction (Dirac) to tame any unwanted room reflections would go well with the PMC's -

 

gibbsy

Moderator
The KEF R3s would be a better allrounder than the LS50s.
 

Nico72

Active Member
Agreed on the SR250. These were £2500 when they came out so it is a serious saving. I just bought a second hand AVR 390 to try dirac myself. I believe Dirac can help you raise the mid frequency if that is what you want, though it may be more involved than turning a knob.
 

Ugg10

Distinguished Member
These guys may ship these newer range PMC tewnt5.21 as it is a shop. The older Twenty.21 tend to go for around £750 on the second hand market.

 

Tension255

Standard Member
Look for some PMC 20/22 or 20/21.... They will give you what you want 👍. There are some deals to be had on those at the moment. Have a look at Fanthorpes website 😉
Ha, thanks we are specifically looking for some white ones. Sorry for forgetting mentioning that. Not for me, but for my boss.
 

Tension255

Standard Member
As per post by @TommyDog -

The amp (says it is an VA receiver but it is a stereo receiver with HDMi inputs) which includes room correction (Dirac) to tame any unwanted room reflections would go well with the PMC's -


Would this drive the Silver 50s? We look for some white speakers actually. We like the appearance of ls50w, but not the sound ...... the vocal is not so clear to our ears.

It would be ideal if we can still use the M-dac . maybe a pre/amp + speakers set would get along well with my old fellow. I am constantly updating my post to be accurate about what we need. Sorry for being picky. ... ;-)
 

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Ugg10

Distinguished Member
If you only want to use the MDac I.e. only have digital sources then you can just add a power amp and use the MDac variable output as you do with you hs8’s.

The audiolab m-PWR is an obvious choice as it matches the MDac Plus they are cheap second hand (around £250) so if your speaker choice has two sets of terminals you could get two and biamp.


From there I would look at the Nord hypex amps, the nc252 stereo amp in the small case would drive pretty much any speaker, runs cool (class d) and will be very clear sound. Just remember to add 20% tax to the prices but they are a direct seller so offer great value.

 

Ugg10

Distinguished Member
Doing a bit of a scout around, this may fit the Bill -

Continue using your MDac as a preamp.

Add the Nord mp252 stereo amp at £479+vat at 20% = £575

Then how about some Sonus Faber Venere 1.5 WHITE speakers, £999 with stands from a U.K. dealer, worth asking if they ship or if you don’t need the stand they may do a deal. Sonus Faber are known for their clear, life like mid range and with the clean dac and Hypex power this should be ultra clear. Plus these do not seem to be too fussy about placement. If you can find a Venere 2.0 then expect to pay a similar price without stands c.1000euro but may be worth it. Keep an eye out on hifishark, marktplaats or eBay. And did I mention they are Sonus Faber!


Review - Sonus Faber Venere 1.5 loudspeaker Page 2

Edit - two pairs of Venere 2.0 sold on Markplaats for 925 and 875ero in the last month.
 
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Tension255

Standard Member
Thank you guys! I noticed that the Sonus faber venus 1.5 really are at good price in Europe these days.
As an additional info. We got a pair of Dynaudio xeo 20 for home demo. I found that the sound of the xeo20 is closer to what we are looking for -- enhanced human vocal, --- more clearer than the KEF ls50w. However, the vocal is just a bit much enhanced that the music feels a bit dark, and my wife said the xeo20s are so close to our TV speakers.... while her comment on the KEF is "excited but annoying", which somehow I have to agree with.

With Xeo20, we can barely feel the emotion in the music rather than the human vocal emotion alone. We think the ideal ones for us might be something in-between the ls50w and the xeo20, for a bit better balance of music and vocal (sounds like a pair of monitors). I am not sure but maybe we finally arrive at a pair of LYD 7 + m-dac or a pair of Sonus faber venus 1.5 - also because of the girly white.
 
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Tension255

Standard Member
Doing a bit of a scout around, this may fit the Bill -

Continue using your MDac as a preamp.

Add the Nord mp252 stereo amp at £479+vat at 20% = £575

Then how about some Sonus Faber Venere 1.5 WHITE speakers, £999 with stands from a U.K. dealer, worth asking if they ship or if you don’t need the stand they may do a deal. Sonus Faber are known for their clear, life like mid range and with the clean dac and Hypex power this should be ultra clear. Plus these do not seem to be too fussy about placement. If you can find a Venere 2.0 then expect to pay a similar price without stands c.1000euro but may be worth it. Keep an eye out on hifishark, marktplaats or eBay. And did I mention they are Sonus Faber!


Review - Sonus Faber Venere 1.5 loudspeaker Page 2

Edit - two pairs of Venere 2.0 sold on Markplaats for 925 and 875ero in the last month.

Marktplaats is really doable for me, ;-) Awesome!
 

Tension255

Standard Member
The KEF R3s would be a better allrounder than the LS50s.
Yes, after trying most of the speakers mentioned above, we ordered a pair of KEF R3s. Now I am choosing between YAMAHA RN803 and Arcam R250. Arcam SA30 might be the one for next step (more power + better dac).
 
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