Speaker upgrade - Allaes with NDS/555DR/300DR/252 and Supercap DR

Esthetics matter but that doesn’t say much, would eclipse TT712s pass that test? They certainly qualify on midrange but the looks wouldn’t suit everyone.

Quad electrostatics? 

A safe bet esthetically might be SL2s or, if you can find a passive pair, NBLs but bear in mind the only parts left are tweeters.

Semi-omnies from Shahinian and Larsen? (I haven’t heard the latter but the reviews are interesting)

m.paul taylor posted:

Any ideas on a shopping list at about £5k - looking for mid range clarity. Aesthetics, matter, too. Room about 22 by about 14

 

  • paul

Hi Paul,

As well as the obvious. There are a few Kudos C30's out there for silly money. All the qualities you want and more. Just get them set up correctly and/or by someone who knows how to (1 cm here and there makes a difference) and the time to do it. Can be 3/4 hours followed by tweaking for a few days afterwards.

Sound great with Naim kit too.

Kind Regards

RR

m.paul taylor posted:

Any ideas on a shopping list at about £5k - looking for mid range clarity. Aesthetics, matter, too. Room about 22 by about 14

 

  • paul

Hi Paul,

Forgot to add at the time I went from CDS3/XPS/Aro LP12/252/300/Rosewood Alleas to C30's. Very pleased with the C30's but the difference was not massive. Your system is already incredibly good. Alleas are a real Naim bargain in my view.

Kind Regards

 

RR

Speakers are such  an individual thing with room matching I would recommend employing a good dealer and doing some home demos. 

The usual suspects from PMC, Neat, Focal, Kudos etc are worth exploring. 

A little bit over budget but I heard the Focal Kanta at Basically Sound on Saturday on the end of a Nova - sounded really impressive. The looks might not be for everyone (yellow and blue ones look like they could be transformers! ) but in the flesh their retro look was kind of cool. 

Finally, are your electronics your end point? I say that as I swapped my 252 Supercap dr for a 552 and am now questioning if I should change / upgrade my PMC fact 8’s - need to let my 552 burn in beforehand deciding. 

Take your time and don’t get caught up in buying blind.

Gary

Hungryhalibut posted:

I’m sure RR loves the C30s, and they may sound great, but I’m not sure how they meet the OP’s specification of something aesthetically pleasing. 

Hi,

 

Really? Had more than 30 speakers over the years and my good wife finds these the most aesthetically pleasing of them all.

Tall, slim, marvellous oak finish and I do have some full length grills with them too.

IMHO C20's are far worse looking and we won't go there wrt SL2's etc since you will probably be as biased as I am.

Kind Regards

 

RR

 

In the old days of HiFi ( amp, record player) there was a rule 50% to spend on loudspeakers.

When i look at many system here, the stuff except of the LS is in the range of a small car, but the LS, small and cheap, i dont understand, its a waste of sound quality.

Imho LS gives you the biggest boost forward in terms of sound.

So i would  spent a little more, to get a balanced system.

I would recommend the Dali Epicon 6, they are not so well known ( i think in GB) but in Germany they are on top of al lists, they sound and look brilliant.

( There is no home advantage, because they are Danish😏)

 

themrock posted:

In the old days of HiFi ( amp, record player) there was a rule 50% to spend on loudspeakers...

Which "old days" were those?  

In my old days, the wisdom was to spend pretty much everything you had on the source (usually a Linn Sondek, if you could stretch that far) and then beg borrow or steal to get something like a NAD integrated amp and a couple of tin cans on strings for speakers (Oh OK, Maxims or Diamonds then...).

It’s the perennial problem of the OP wanting to put them close to a wall hence the recommendation of older Naim ‘speakers. Lots of interest on the Forum for SL2s at the moment too. I am not so sure about Jon’s assertion that modern designs are much better given my limited exposure to ‘speakers in the last few years. Certainly boundary designs which seem rare as hens teeth.

Separate Box Loudspeakers anyone?

Stu

Richard Dane posted:
themrock posted:

In the old days of HiFi ( amp, record player) there was a rule 50% to spend on loudspeakers...

Which "old days" were those?  

In my old days, the wisdom was to spend pretty much everything you had on the source (usually a Linn Sondek, if you could stretch that far) and then beg borrow or steal to get something like a NAD integrated amp and a couple of tin cans on strings for speakers (Oh OK, Maxims or Diamonds then...).

The Wisdom in some quarters not everywhere

Richard Dane posted:
themrock posted:

In the old days of HiFi ( amp, record player) there was a rule 50% to spend on loudspeakers...

Which "old days" were those?  

In my old days, the wisdom was to spend pretty much everything you had on the source (usually a Linn Sondek, if you could stretch that far) and then beg borrow or steal to get something like a NAD integrated amp and a couple of tin cans on strings for speakers (Oh OK, Maxims or Diamonds then...).

The 80s.

But in my opinion, a medicore scource with a top Loudspeaker sounds better than a top scource with a medicore Loudspeaker.

 

For superb midrange ia’m surprised no-one has mentioned ATCyet, especially SCM40 or higher with their wonderful midrange unit. Aesthetically the 40 tower might be the best. 

Personally I’d only consider secondhand or at least ex-dem, because you get more for your money...  that opens the door to higher ATCs, and a number of PMCs - (But not PMC I’d otherwise suggest.)

 

themrock posted:
Richard Dane posted:
themrock posted:

In the old days of HiFi ( amp, record player) there was a rule 50% to spend on loudspeakers...

Which "old days" were those?  

In my old days, the wisdom was to spend pretty much everything you had on the source (usually a Linn Sondek, if you could stretch that far) and then beg borrow or steal to get something like a NAD integrated amp and a couple of tin cans on strings for speakers (Oh OK, Maxims or Diamonds then...).

The 80s.

But in my opinion, a medicore scource with a top Loudspeaker sounds better than a top scource with a medicore Loudspeaker.

 

You are not alone!

Innocent Bystander posted:
themrock posted:
Richard Dane posted:
themrock posted:

In the old days of HiFi ( amp, record player) there was a rule 50% to spend on loudspeakers...

Which "old days" were those?  

In my old days, the wisdom was to spend pretty much everything you had on the source (usually a Linn Sondek, if you could stretch that far) and then beg borrow or steal to get something like a NAD integrated amp and a couple of tin cans on strings for speakers (Oh OK, Maxims or Diamonds then...).

The 80s.

But in my opinion, a medicore scource with a top Loudspeaker sounds better than a top scource with a medicore Loudspeaker.

 

You are not alone!

Not alone but not in the majority I would suggest.

nigelb posted:
Innocent Bystander posted:
themrock posted:
Richard Dane posted:
themrock posted:

In the old days of HiFi ( amp, record player) there was a rule 50% to spend on loudspeakers...

Which "old days" were those?  

In my old days, the wisdom was to spend pretty much everything you had on the source (usually a Linn Sondek, if you could stretch that far) and then beg borrow or steal to get something like a NAD integrated amp and a couple of tin cans on strings for speakers (Oh OK, Maxims or Diamonds then...).

The 80s.

But in my opinion, a medicore scource with a top Loudspeaker sounds better than a top scource with a medicore Loudspeaker.

 

You are not alone!

Not alone but not in the majority I would suggest.

On this forum certainly that appears to be the case. But I've heard systems akin to Richard's description above (except the tin cans did have drivers in them!), and to me it was like playing a cheap transistor radio - better than no music, but nothing satisfying about it - whereas I've heard systems with lesser front ends and better speakers that have been highly enjoyable to me.

It of course depends on what in the music most triggers one's responses - however I am not suggesting extremes, like a crystal cartridge in a BSR turntable from a Dansette type 60's record player feeding a pair of PMC BB5XBD speakers, and the amp must be capable of at least reasonable control of the speakers.

Richard Dane posted:
In my old days, the wisdom was to spend pretty much everything you had on the source (usually a Linn Sondek, if you could stretch that far) and then beg borrow or steal to get something like a NAD integrated amp and a couple of tin cans on strings for speakers (Oh OK, Maxims or Diamonds then...).

I'm almost certain my Sept 1979 issue of Hi-Fi Answers that advocates the same agreeable philosophy still languishes in my parents' attic   :-)

....

...Where's the OP?

Richard Dane posted:
themrock posted:

In the old days of HiFi ( amp, record player) there was a rule 50% to spend on loudspeakers...

Which "old days" were those? 

The mid-1970s, IIRC.

I do have a recollection of reading in one of the hi-fi comics from that time advice to the effect that, because the sound emerges from the speakers, the speakers are the most important component in a hi-fi system, should be chosen first, and should consume most of the available budget. The amp needed only low distortion and enough watts to drive the speakers, the turntable needed only speed accuracy and low rumble, wow, and flutter, the tonearm needed to be low mass, and the cartridge needed to have a high compliance and be able track band C HFS75 at 1 g or less.

I also have a recollection that the purveyors of this advice were mystified by the discovery that swapping a direct-drive turntable for a belt-drive turntable could radically affect the sound emerging from the speakers.

And while we're on this walk down Memory Lane: Anyone remember the "musicality" debate from around the same time?

Funny, I learnt about the significance of speakers from experience, and nothing I have read of heard since has convinced me otherwise. Interestingly my experience was in the mid 70s: I did a major audition of a dozen or so speakers in a price bracket equivalent to about £2.5-£3k today, all well renowned models. Given the fairly elevated level (and IIRC there were very few speakers available at the time costing even as much as double that), I was actually shocked to hear how very different they all sounded, more than half sounding so awful to me that I rejected them after the first track.

That brought home to me how far from perfection even relatively expensive speakers were, with far greater difference than between any other component - and with such an influence over the character of the sound that getting speakers one likes the sound of is crucially important to building a system one likes.

Innocent Bystander posted:

Funny, I learnt about the significance of speakers from experience, and nothing I have read of heard since has convinced me otherwise.

Funny, I learnt about the relative insignificance of the speakers compared to upstream components from experience and nothing I have read or heard since has convinced me otherwise.

TL;DR: YMMV.

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