I'm moving in the next few months. I will likely have a larger room – one of my requirements for my new place – so I can accommodate a larger speaker – might even need one.
If I were you I would wait until after you have moved.
I'm not getting new speakers until I've moved. I plan on having a home demo.
Quad 67, QUAD 44, Quad 303, Castle Richmond II
CA 751BD, Denon AVR-3801, Quad 21L2, Quad L2 Centre, Mission 78DS
Samsung LE32R87BD 32"
Whereabouts are you?
When the time comes I will ask the place where I demoed yesterday.
I always have bass problems will speakers! Every demo I have ever had, every speaker, amp, CD player I have ever owned, I have considered that the speakers have had bass issues. Part of the problem is me. Finding a speaker that limits this issue is a bonus.
Unless you are always listening in rubbish rooms, then I feel that your system building skills need some work.
I saw this thread earlier and thought the basic premiss was hopeless, interesting to see that your own listening seems to confirm my thoughts.
I find a lot of 'modern' systems have bass issues which I personally put down the current 'fashion' for good speakers with amplifiers that are wholly inadequate to get the best from them.
I know changing speakers makes a big difference, but in many cases these differences are simply 'presentational', more/less bass. brighter/darker treble etc etc. To make a real difference, to really enhance the capabilities of the system is much more difficult and it is necessary to use good amplification to do so, something that people seem increasingly reluctant to do these days.
To use a vintage amplifier of modest capabilities and expect it to drive demanding speakers such as the Spendors (or Harbeths, or PMCs) is going to be a fruitless task, if you want to hear why, just try any of the Spendors on the end of a more capable amplifier.
We do so many shows in a row,
And these towns all look the same,
We just pass the time in our hotel room
And wander 'round backstage,
Till the lights come up, and we hear that crowd,
And we remember why we came.
I agree with this
Perhaps upgrading to a quad 909 power amp or something similar would be wise before choosing different speakers .
Electrocompaniet EMC1UP Cd player , EC 4.7 pre , AW120 DMB power amp , PMC PB1i speakers . Isotek Titan / Nova , Nordost SPM speaker cable , Kimber KCAG balanced interconnects .
Linn LP12 Lingo , Ittok lv3 , Lyra Lydian , EAR834P .
"Everything should be as simple as possible, but no simpler." Albert Einstein .
OK not many Harbeth dealers around there the nearest is Repton in Derbyshire about 60 miles.
Some nice feedback, thanks.
My current listening room is an upstairs bedroom. The demo was also upstairs. So perhaps you are correct davedotco, my listening rooms are rubbish!
I see what you are saying about amps – a more powerful amp should control the speakers better.
60 miles is not far. What is the name of the Harbeth dealer?
Is it correct that Harbeth are slightly brighter than Spendor?
It is: Ian Harrison Hi-Fi
Harbeth brighter than Spendor maybe I have read that Spendors have a more rolled off treble but the Harbeth sound more natural but thats rather generalising as they have several different speakers. This thread maybe of interest: http://www.whathifi.com/forum/hi-fi/harbeth-p3esr-v-spendor-sa1v-proac-one
Yes an upstairs room may not be helping your bass problem.
Thinking more clearly today I had better clarify the bass issues I have had in the past.
All from memory. These are the main changes & issues in the past few years.
With Cyrus electronics:
Mission 782 floorstanders – boomy bass.
Von Schweikert vr1 standmount – too lean.
Spendor SA1 standmount – too lean.
With Quad amps, Cyrus CD player:
Mission 782 floorstanders – boomy bass.
Spendor SA1 – too lean until put nearer corners then boomy bass.
Change to CA 751BD as CD player:
Much leaner than Cyrus CD player.
Quad 21L2 – quite good actually thinking about it. Not too boomy but a bit lacking in the low end.
Castle Richmond II – quite good. Better when nearer corners. A bit lean.
Change to Quad 67 CD player:
Better overall than 751BD.
More and better controlled bass. Well controlled with Castle speakers.
Overall actually very happy with the Castle speakers. Want a bit more low end. They are also old.
Appologies if I was coming across as a negative and miserable *******, we all have our likes and dislikes but any kind of looseness or lack of control in the bass finds me reaching for the off button.
In my view, the primary function of the amplifier is to control the speaker, no point in asking an amplifier designed to drive simple speakers with benign characteristics to drive 'difficult' ones. It may appear to go loud enough without obvious distortion but when amplifiers are operated outside their 'comfort zone' all kinds of things can happen.
Boomy bass is one problem, as is the inability to produce any bass at all and even if these areas sound fine there are plenty of other issues, a lack of clarity in the midrange due to unobserved bass problems, a hardness in the mid and high range caused by the crossover etc etc, all problems that can be causes by inadequate amplification.
This is, in my view, made much worse by the modern trend towards buying better loudspeakers and cutting back on the amplifier.
With such a long list of things you've been unhappy with it's doubtful you will ever be happy. I actually have one of the speakers you list and I don't find them 'lean' at all.
Have you measured the frequency response of the room and looked into fixing the room acoustics? Boomy bass is not rocket science to fix.
Round Things > Boxes > Wires > Boxes > Walls/Ceiling/Acoustic Stuff > Ears > Brain
I'm not sure the OP has boomy bass as such, just bass that fails to deliver with some combos sounding too much and others a bit light. Unless the room is truly awful, the OP just needs to think through what he is trying to achieve and the best way of going about it.
Quite frankly, for a budget of about £3k there are tons of options that will sound better than any speaker you choose driven by your current power amp. I f you want to keep as much of your Quad gear as possible just replace your power amp with, say, the PMC monoblocks and choose pretty much any speaker you like in the £1500 range.
Of course at that point a better pre-amp becomes a viable option too, but i have a feeling I am taking you in a direction you might not want to go.
Been to some Hi-Fi show just recently and I audtioned to many expensive system with rediculous crazy prices. But the most I was masmerized with Magnepan 1.7 speakers. I think they have very good price in USA only 2000 USD. In Europe they are around 3000EUR. Speakers were hooked also to good amp Moodwright KWI 200. What stayed to remember is that there was only this organic and natural sound of music in the room. Other expensive systems did not manage to achieve this on that particular show.
I don't disagree but when you've gone through that much 'quality' equipment and didn't like any of it then maybe it's time to try something other than continual box swapping. My suggestion would be to try some rolled up duvets/piled cushions behind the speakers to see what that does to the boomy bass.
The 'current room' is detailed at 11x9 - from personal experience I would say it's all but impossible to get good bass in a room that size without putting some thought into the acoustics. His new bigger room should make things a lot better.
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