Upgrading my system - 2.5k

Highflyerr

Novice Member
Hello everyone,

This is my current situation:
  • I have a set of BW XT8 speakers driven by a CA CXA80 amp with a BW AWS610 subwoofer in a 2.1 setup. Although we do watch TV with them, they're mainly used for music. I'm not interested in a surround system.
    • What I like about this current set-up
      • Higher frequencies sound amazing
      • Detailed and 'wide' sound on higher volumes, I can hear the different instruments quite well.
      • I don't know how to really explain this, but I like how the sound is 'divided' with the BW speakers: it seems like the voice of the singer is always on the top and the instruments support them instead of the voice getting 'lost' in dominating instruments. I hope this make sense ;-). I heard a KEF model once and there I had the feeling the the voice was more in the background and less 'crisp'.
    • What I don't like about this current set-up
      • A lot of the 'wow' factor (detailed & wide sound) is lost on normal listening volume.
      • The mids are inferior in quality with respect to the highs (or at least it sounds like that), the lows are okay but not amazing (of course each speaker only has 2x5" woofers). It's not too bad the lows are a little bit tempered at this moment as I do have neighbors, although there is some sound insulation.
  • Attached you can find the floor plan of the floor where the speakers are placed. The height is approximately 2,50m (8ft). We only have one carpet as there is floor heating, although I try to add some softer materials here and there. So acoustically it's not 100%. We're also renting it so I can't really make some drastic changes.
  • We are planning to buy our own house in 1,5-2 years
I bought everything second hand a couple of years ago as an entry step in HiFi equipment. Now I saved some money (± 2.5k euro) and am looking to upgrade. I'm looking for advice what to buy. As I do like the sound signature of the BW (I also have a pair of BW P7 headphones) and my girlfriend likes how the BW speakers look, I was looking more towards another pair of BWs. I was thinking of one of the following options:
  1. BW 705S2: to my feeling these ones are better for the current size of the room and require a little less power (i.e. better suited for my current amp).
  2. BW 703: might be a little bit too large for the current apartment and require more power (i.e. my amp will not get the most out of it atm), however it could be a better investment as we're moving in 1,5-2 years.
  3. Save a little bit more money and go for the 702S2 as I heard the jump from the 703 is quite big.
  4. Invest in a stereo power amp to pair with my CA CXA80 (it has all the connectivity I want) to get the most out of my XT8s and buy new speakers when we eventually move. Would for example a Rotel RB-1582 MKii (1.600 euro) or NADc298 (2.000 euro) give a substantial better sound? Is the NAD worth 400 euro more?
I would love to hear your opinion. I know I already narrowed down my choices to BW, but please feel free to suggest some other speakers or amps. I will look into and listen (if possible) to them. Don't care about the neighbors to much: good sound >>> neighbors. No I'm just kidding, the sounds insulation we have here is quite good, so it should not be a problem.

Thanks a lot in advance!
 

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password1

Distinguished Member
You haven't said what type of music you mainly listen to.

Can we assume floorstanders?

Prefer new?

No aesthetic preferences?
 

Highflyerr

Novice Member
You haven't said what type of music you mainly listen to.

Can we assume floorstanders?

Prefer new?

No aesthetic preferences?
Good points:
  • Music: mainly rock, folk, pop
  • Floorstanders are definitely an option. I was just not sure whether my current room is large enough for a pair of e.g. BW 703/702s2
  • I don't mind second hand speakers, I would just have to be lucky to find them. I do prefer modern speakers though, nothing too vintage
  • Aesthetics: I prefer regular black floorstanders that look modern. I don't like vintage looking speakers
 

password1

Distinguished Member
As always best to demo if you can.

Wharfesale evo 4.3 and 4.4, Mission zx3, zx4 and zx5, the new Dali opticon 6 and 8 mk2 are all modern and available in black.

IMG_20210515_144236.jpg
IMG_20210515_144208.jpg
IMG_20210515_144147.jpg
 

Highflyerr

Novice Member
Thank you for the recommendations!

The speakers from Mission are not available here, but I will definitely give the other ones a listen.

Will my CA CXA80 be able to drive these properly? And will my room be large enough for these to fully develop their sound?
 

password1

Distinguished Member
Your amp will be powerful enough. Every room is different do I'm not able to advise on your specific room, it's not just room size to consider.
 

alex30

Active Member
Good points:
  • Music: mainly rock, folk, pop
  • Floorstanders are definitely an option. I was just not sure whether my current room is large enough for a pair of e.g. BW 703/702s2
  • I don't mind second hand speakers, I would just have to be lucky to find them. I do prefer modern speakers though, nothing too vintage
  • Aesthetics: I prefer regular black floorstanders that look modern. I don't like vintage looking speakers
If you can have a look at the Revel Concerta2 F35 or, if you can fit them in, the F36.
Very easy to drive and with a very neutral tone. They represent fantastic value for money too.
They are available in gloss white or gloss black.

Revel really do know how to design a speaker and the Concerta2 range is their entry level that benefits from trickle down technology from the higher priced cousins. Don't be put off with these being entry level, they sound anything but entry level.
 

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