Replacement for Audio Note AN-Ks: B&W 684 ?


Standard Member
My Audio Notes have just been re-foamed and I'm finding them tiresome. They are just too bright - too much mid to high frequency stuff. I've even turned them upside-down and stuck cloth over the tweeters and while that does tame them quite a bit there's still an overall emphasis on the midrange. The woofer foam had holes in, and I thought re-foaming might cure them, but it's actually made matters worse.

I have tried a pair of homemade Saburos, single-driver horns based on the Fostex FE126. These have a beautifully natural and detailed low to mid range but the Fostex units have nasty peaks in the upper treble which I can't live with. They'll be going on ebay soon.

So what should I get to replace them? I use a small JLH Class A amplifier so I don't need anything that's difficult to drive. But I don't want sensitivity for its own sake. I want a speaker primarily for its sonic benefits - natural sound on classical & vocals, lots of accurate detail, and an uncoloured response with smooth treble. Could do with a little more bass than the Audio Notes. I've thought about the B&W 684. The price is right for me, at GBP 700 new, but is it in the right league?
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Mike Hughes

Active Member
What does "just" mean? Should you not allow for some time to allow any change to bed in? Equally I can't associate your description of that sound with Audio Note. Have you spoken to them about what you're experiencing? That would be my first stop every time.

simon ess

Well-known Member
Have to agree with Mike.

I've never heard Audio Note speakers but everything I've read about them suggests they are superb.

Don't people, very rich people, tend to run Kondo amps with AN?

Ed Selley

AVF Reviewer
Were the drivers supplied by Audio Note? My K's were re-drivered last year using a fresh pair of AN components and they sound pretty much identical to how they did before.


Standard Member
That's all very well, but I still don't have an answer to my question. Are B&W 684s (or for that matter the earlier 603 S2s which are now a good price second-hand) in the same league as my Audio Note AN-Ks?


Standard Member
Thank you for that. I'll give them some more running in. They do seem to be improving. I suspect their bass-shyness may be due to room size & orientation. They are stood fairly close to the shortest wall of a room 3.5m x 7m.

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