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xnn3882's picture
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Spendor SA1 , Kef LS50 pr PMC Twenty 21?

Hi

I'm looking at some small bookshelf speakers to use in a small room with a subwoofer. They most be easy to integrate with the sub. 

Not superneutral and very reaveling. Not bight. I play modern music, pop, dance, rap etc. My amp is Cambridge 851A wich is very neutral. 

There are some interestering speakers I can get used.

Kef LS 50, Spendor SA-1 and PCM Twenty21. Whichj of this spekars would be best? The Spendors are at a very good price. PCM Twenty 21 is the most expensive. 

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RE: Spendor SA1 , Kef LS50 pr PMC Twenty 21?

I take it you will be doing a demo.

The SA1 is the least "forward". The other two are a lot more revealing and neutral.

FWIW I would put the SA1 with the CA, but you must try for yourself.

"We should no more let numbers define audio quality than we should let chemical analysis be the arbiter of fine wines."  Nelson Pass

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RE: Spendor SA1 , Kef LS50 pr PMC Twenty 21?

Well, you have started with a nice little selection. A good sealed sub will work well with any of them.

The fact that they're all good speakers means you don't have to buy on price - buying on price will usually end up in mistakes or costly mistakes. 

I'm not familiar with your amp, so I can only go by your description. The PMC's might seem a little bass light with a neutral amplifier, but the other two should be fine. Of course, adding a sub to the PMC's may make up for their lighter low end. 

All three speakers are quite different, so regardless of what's recommended, I'd listen to some if I were you, and make sure it is with the sub you're considering. A sealed sub will work best for music.

DavidF @FrankHarveyHiFi, Coventry.

"Long is the way, and hard, that out of hell leads up to light"

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RE: Spendor SA1 , Kef LS50 pr PMC Twenty 21?

I used to own the SA-1s. As you'd expect from Spendor, fantastic midrange but a bit lacking in the bottom end. Then again, the sub would take care of this, so I'd say they'd warrant a serious audition.

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RE: Spendor SA1 , Kef LS50 pr PMC Twenty 21?

I'm not able to audition the speakers. I have Definitive Technology Supercube II subwoofer. I'm downgrading. The floorstanders I have now are to revealing. Listning to music isnt fun anymore. They just play too clean. So I want a fun little bookshelf speakers. I have speaker stand which is 60cm heigh that I plan to use.

The Spendors sounds very interesting from what you describe. How is the treble? I want it airy, detailed, but not too bright. My Cambridge 851A may sound a little to bright on some speakers (Klipsch, Elac)

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RE: Spendor SA1 , Kef LS50 pr PMC Twenty 21?

I suppose it depends on your classification of "fun", but I'm not sure that's how you'd class the Spendor. Maybe add the PMC DB1i into the mix and see how you get on.

DavidF @FrankHarveyHiFi, Coventry.

"Long is the way, and hard, that out of hell leads up to light"

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RE: Spendor SA1 , Kef LS50 pr PMC Twenty 21?

xnn3882 wrote:

I'm not able to audition the speakers. I have Definitive Technology Supercube II subwoofer. I'm downgrading. The floorstanders I have now are to revealing. Listning to music isnt fun anymore. They just play too clean. So I want a fun little bookshelf speakers. I have speaker stand which is 60cm heigh that I plan to use.

The Spendors sounds very interesting from what you describe. How is the treble? I want it airy, detailed, but not too bright. My Cambridge 851A may sound a little to bright on some speakers (Klipsch, Elac)

If you really cannot demo, imo you should probably go for the Spendors (which are my favorite small speakers). I suspect the other 2 speakers may be too neutral for your taste (with your amp). The treble in the SA1s is detailed, wonderfully musical and natural, but a little dark / rolled off compared to the other two.....which is why I think it will be a good match with the CA.

The weak point is their bass, which is satisfactory in a small room, but with a good sub - this isn't an issue.

"We should no more let numbers define audio quality than we should let chemical analysis be the arbiter of fine wines."  Nelson Pass

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RE: Spendor SA1 , Kef LS50 pr PMC Twenty 21?

If you will be using a subwoofer, then I would recommend the ATC SCM7. Sound perfect for your needs/room size.

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RE: Spendor SA1 , Kef LS50 pr PMC Twenty 21?

I'm affraid the Spendors will be a little boring to my taste. Kef LS50 has gotten very good reviews and seems to impress alot of people. I can't say I've seen any negative response on this speaker. I was also told by someone who was able to audition this speaker that it's neutral but leans a litte towards the warm side. He was convinced that speakers would be a very good match with my cambridge. 

The best would probaly be System Audio Mantra 60, which I had before and is the best speaker I have ever heard. It was so clear, fatastic midrange, fantastic treble so airy detailed, yet very fun speaker. Never become boring. However it''s a little too big for my room, and the bass got boomy and not enough dept placed close to backwall. System Audio does not have a smaller spekaer that would suit my taste. But I am tempted to buy the new System Audio Mantra 50, place a sock in the rear port and use it with the subwoofer. 

 

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RE: Spendor SA1 , Kef LS50 pr PMC Twenty 21?

Only you really know your taste.....there is no doubt that the Kefs have a livelier presentation (though you will also find very few bad reviews of the SA1).

I would say that the R Series are a little on the warm side of neutral and the LS50 is pretty neutral, which is why a couple of people on here preferred R100 / R300.

I think the LS50 is a better choice than the PMC (though the older PMCs might work).

"We should no more let numbers define audio quality than we should let chemical analysis be the arbiter of fine wines."  Nelson Pass

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RE: Spendor SA1 , Kef LS50 pr PMC Twenty 21?

Spendor SA1 boring,

your havind a giraffe .........................

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RE: Spendor SA1 , Kef LS50 pr PMC Twenty 21?

The SA1's are hardly boring - that's just lumping all Spendor speakers into one pigeon hole. While Spendor are generally more laid back than some, the range/ranges do vary, and will be dependent upon the system used. Although, I wouldn't class them as a "fun" speaker either.

DavidF @FrankHarveyHiFi, Coventry.

"Long is the way, and hard, that out of hell leads up to light"

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RE: Spendor SA1 , Kef LS50 pr PMC Twenty 21?

FrankHarveyHiFi wrote:

The SA1's are hardly boring - that's just lumping all Spendor speakers into one pigeon hole. While Spendor are generally more laid back than some, the range/ranges do vary, and will be dependent upon the system used. Although, I wouldn't class them as a "fun" speaker either.

This is probably fair, but....if a "fun" speaker takes the fun out of listening (for whatever reason), the term becomes irrelevant. 

I think we are both trying to get this point across...........we can't make the decision for the OP.

"We should no more let numbers define audio quality than we should let chemical analysis be the arbiter of fine wines."  Nelson Pass

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RE: Spendor SA1 , Kef LS50 pr PMC Twenty 21?

I was just passed an older edition of Hifi News featuring a speaker test for standmounts between £750 to £2495. Models were from Cabasse, ATC, PSB, Dynaudio and Mordaunt Shorts Performance Series.

Best on grounds of 'alround ability' was the Dynaudio Focus 160 followed closely by PSB's Synchrony 2B. Perhaps worth checking out. Test system amp were some higher end Naims as usual and a modified Arcam Rdac. Perhaps not directly comparable with your Cambridge but maybe worth checking out.

To give some sort of comparison, I found Dynaudio's active 110 quite a 'fun' speaker to listen to. 'Bouncier' than AVI's ADM's next to them if not as revealing or controlled. - Lower treble is something I found less than perfect with them but on the whole ... nice.

regards

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RE: Spendor SA1 , Kef LS50 pr PMC Twenty 21?

What about the JBL Studio 530? Looks interesting. Good price. It gets 5 star in What Hi-Fi review and descibre it as a fun speaker. Could this be something for me? A did not like the looks from the pictures, but I can live with that. I think. Maybe it looks better in real.

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