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Inherited AE209 Floorstanders - where do I go from here?

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suzy33's picture
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cheer Hi, I'm a complete Hi-Fi novice who has just inherited Accoustic Energy AE209 Speakers. There was also a bundle of mismatched and very old separates which I have given away. I want to start afresh with the speakers but don't want to have a stack of separates. I would like maybe 2 or 3 (amp, cd player, tuner) but the question is where do I start? I was intending to buy good quality 2nd hand off ebay but the choice is overwhelming! I had been looking at Cambridge, NAD, Denon, Arcam because they are the names I know. Above all, I would like good quality music so clarity and detail is most important factor. Wide range of music collection (but not rock) - mainly classical, folk and contemporary. Maybe something good for cello as daughter is learning the instrument. Should I go for a simple matching combo or should I go for the amp first and build from there: I was attracted to the Cyrus as it is small in size and silver in colour but of course the sound quality is more important. Any advice would be appreciated but I am NOT technical. I had in mind something like the Cambridge 640/650 but was also looking at Arcam 750. I also liked the look of Arcam solo but would it do justice to the AE209s? Thanks guys.

BigH's picture
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RE: Inherited AE209 Floorstanders - where do I go from here?

What is your budget. I don't know those speakers. Some of the all-in-one systems are pretty good. Cyrus some people love and some don't, its a bit like marmite, for your music Arcam or Creek maybe better. Only way to tell is to go and hear them. Do you have any hifi dealers near you?

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RE: Inherited AE209 Floorstanders - where do I go from here?

Have emailed James at Acoustic Energy to see if he can give any guidance.

My vote would be for finding an amp that's suitable and getting the matching CD player because it looks nice Smile

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RE: Inherited AE209 Floorstanders - where do I go from here?

i had a pair of these that I sold to a friend about 10 yrs ago he still has them as well as the Musical Fidelity amp that went with them and the combo still sounds very good, so if you can get a decent MF amp the speakers will appreciate it Smile

 

Tommo

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RE: Inherited AE209 Floorstanders - where do I go from here?

Hi Suzy,

Glad to hear you've gotten hold of some AE speakers! The 209's aren't as well known as some of our models but they were one of our engineer's favourites. They're basically a metal-coned version of the Award-winning 109's but didn't quite achieve the same level of praise due to their more analytical nature (a byproduct of aluminium cones rather that "softer" sounding paper ones). This shouldn't be a huge problem and actually the trend in loudspeaker voicing has probably gone more in that direction over time anyway.

They should do a great job with your musical tastes and dig up all the detail you'll ever want to hear, the metal cones are great at picking out the leading edge and tone of string instruments and the 209's go very deep in the bass so Cello should be no problem for them!

 

With that said I think there are a couple of things you should look for in a matching amp:

1. Power. The 209's definitely thrive with more of it. Ideally you should go for an amp with as large a power supply as you can find (wattage ratings don't always tell the whole story but current delivery isn't always mentioned in specs unfortunately!).

2. Warmth. To counter any of that analytical side an amp with a smoother, warmer tonal balance is preferable. I've found Cyrus doesn't usually go so well with our speakers but many of our older models were designed on Arcam due to shared distribution in the past so they are probably a good place to start. 

 

Something like an Arcam Alpha 10 or A85 should do a decent job and there are probably quite a few on Ebay for reasonable money. If you want to go new then it would definitely be worth visiting a dealer or two and trying out a shortlist of amps in your price range, it's a pain to lug speakers around but if you're making a big investment it's worth it - some dealers will even loan you gear to try at home which is the best option if you can get it! With the second-hand market especially the choices are endless and if you get the chance it's always better to hear the product before buying with Hi-Fi as mistakes can get expensive.

Feel free to ask any questions and if I can answer them I will.

 

Cheers,

 

Jim.

 

*Edit - Thanks for the heads-up John! Smile

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RE: Inherited AE209 Floorstanders - where do I go from here?

Depending on budget it may be worth considering a mid priced Reciever/AV amp - cuts down on box numbers with built in reciever and will have more than enough power to control those speakers - something like a Yamaha 673 ( prices will soon start to plummet on them ) may be ideal for you and will out perform any of the midis or budget amps you may consider.

With built in DACS they're future proof'ed and ready to use with Ipads. phones and pc's and if you ever decide to expand and go surround sound, its ready.

suzy33's picture
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RE: Inherited AE209 Floorstanders - where do I go from here?

Thanks BigH, my budget is pretty tight which is why I'm looking at 2nd hand, maybe something like £600 to start off with. Your advice on the Arcam though ties in with what AEJim has to say about the speakers being developed with Arcam so think I'll narrow down my search on that. Cheers  Smile

suzy33's picture
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RE: Inherited AE209 Floorstanders - where do I go from here?

Wow! Thanks John. It's not what you know,.................. I never thought when joining I would actually get access to the real experts so thanks for putting me in touch with Jim. I like the advice of a nice looking twin combo which won't be too dominant in my living room.  hello or goodbye

suzy33's picture
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RE: Inherited AE209 Floorstanders - where do I go from here?

Thanks Tommo, I did wonder how long they would be good for so glad to hear yours are still going strong. John has put me in touch with Jim from AE who has given a very comprehensive and helpful reply so I'm now going to focus on Arcam. Thanks for the advice.  beauty, eh

suzy33's picture
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RE: Inherited AE209 Floorstanders - where do I go from here?

That's great advice Jim. Also, I think this forum is great. I never thought I would get put in touch with an actual real expert so thanks to John too! I'll take on board your comment re Cyrus and will focus on Arcam in view of what you said about your speakers being developed on Arcam. This also ties in with what BigH had to say about Arcam suiting my musical tastes so thanks guys! Also, it was pleasing to hear that Tommo had these speakers before passing on to a friend and they are still going strong. This ties in with a recent visit I made to a well known high street retailer and one of the guys who worked there had the same speakers as me and said he would never replace them and also that his expert colleagues were extremely impressed. He also told me they would last for ever. So well done to AE! I may well take you up on your offer for further advice Jim. Much as I would like, buying new is not an option for me, this would be too much of an indulgence with having the kids to feed and clothe and keep entertained! There is an Alpha 10 and an A85 on ebay, both around the £300 mark so will go from there. I will be needing advice on cables and interconnect etc at some point so will come back.  cheer

BigH's picture
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RE: Inherited AE209 Floorstanders - where do I go from here?

Not sure the difference between the Arcam 9 and 10, I know the 9s go for about £200 on ebay, some have been refurbished which is worth having. The Arcam had a great rep. I assume the 10 is similar but maybe more power?

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RE: Inherited AE209 Floorstanders - where do I go from here?

If your budget is £600 then an Arcam A85 like this:

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Arcam-A85-Integrated-Amplifier-/321149072277?p...

and something like a CD73:

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Arcam-CD73-CD-Player-/161051693354?pt=UK_Audio...

(but not THAT one, it's for spares or repail!  If you're patient you should be able to get one (or similar) for £100 - certainly no more than £150), would make a very nice system indeed.

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