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how do you decide?

6 replies [Last post]
alializadeh's picture
Joined: 9 Oct 2011
Posts: 86


i'm looking for a long time now, to upgrade my system. but there are so many variables that making a decision is going to take ages. not that i'm in hurry or something, but how do you bring clarity into your knowledge and choices?

for eample: i decided to go for kef for my pm6004, but wich serie should i pick? iq? R?q?

or should i ggo for bx2's because they are recommended strongly?

or dali zensor's? or wharfedale 10.1 or 2?

i'm cluwless, pls help

plastic penguin's picture
Joined: 28 Apr 2008
Posts: 15588
RE: how do you decide?

There's no single definitive answer. It really boils down to the sound that's best for your ears, musical taste and room acoustics. Hi-fi isn't an exact science, hence why no two replies are (generally) the same. There's no right or wrong answer or solution; the only one who can decide is you.

Choosing the right kit can take time, but auditioning is essential IMO, and don't buy based on reviews or any individuals experiences. We can only advise on various pieces of kit.

Worth mentioning that it can depend on what amp and sources you currently have or plan to buy and fitting the amp to your needs. For example if you only have a PC or Mac then perhaps active speakers could be an option. Or if you like to stick to more traditional set-up but don't want the hassle of finding the perfect matches, then maybe all-in-one, such as Arcam Mini Solo or Marantz 603 or Naim Uniti could be the perfect fit for you.

I'm presuming you already have an amp, the short-list looks good, set yourself a ceiling budget and see where the journey takes you. Enjoy the ride.  Smile


Amp: Leema Pulse; Source: Naim CD5i-2, Denon 260MKII, Pro-ject XP I; Speakers: PMC TB2i


Formerly known as plastic penguin

Al ears's picture
Joined: 23 Nov 2008
Posts: 2438
RE: how do you decide?

+1 for everything plasticpenguin has said. That's it in in a nutshell.

Audition as much kit as you can within your budget and always bear in mind you are probably never going to be 100% satisfied with your lot.

If everyone was that satisfied there would be no need for this forum! Smile


Origin Live Aurora Gold+Illustrious Mk2 arm+Zyx R100-02/Stello CDT200+Stello DA220 dac/Tom Evans Groove Anniversary phono amp/Tom Evans Vibe preamp/Linear A power amp/Acoustic Zen Adagios/Chord cables/Oppo 105EU.

BigH's picture
Joined: 29 Dec 2012
Posts: 3300
RE: how do you decide?

The only way is to go and hear different speakers, don't read too much into reviews many will have been tested on far different systems than yours. About half of the highly rated speakers I did not like. The 2 most complaints about speakers seem to be brightness/harshness and bass (lacking or boomy), make sure you test for these aspects, drum cymbals are a good test for harshness and whether the tweeters can handle it. Bass is often a matter of taste. Some speakers may sound impressive initially but can you live with them? The KEF R100s are good but £600.

Covenanter's picture
Joined: 20 Jul 2012
Posts: 970
RE: how do you decide?

You simply have to listen to them (or as many as you can manage).  People on here can give you their opinions but these are subjective and will generally be shaped by the type of music they listen to.


PS I have KefQ500s with the Marantz having rejected MAs and Dali Zensors by audition.

steve_1979's picture
Joined: 14 Jul 2010
Posts: 3569
RE: how do you decide?

Listen to some HiFi systems and buy the ones you like. Simples.  Smile


Also try some active speakers at pro audio shops as well as passive speakers in HiFi shops.


PC > AVI Neutron Five 2.1

Sony NWZ-A847 64GB Walkman > Westone UM3x

MakkaPakka's picture
Joined: 25 May 2013
Posts: 506
RE: how do you decide?

Spend lots of time reading about blind tests.

Decide it doesn't matter.

Buy product based on price and features.



That was how I decided on amy and CD player - I already had some speakers I got second hand which had good reviews.


I'm not going to say it was the right or wrong way to do things but I haven't regretted it.