ATC SCM40 stumbles the SN2?

Innocent Bystander posted:

Oh dear, this has rather got out of hand. All that matters is whether people like the sound of music what they use. 

Analogmusic, interestingly a committed digitallistener, if I read this right you say Naim is best - but went for Dave (and Mojo). You rejected Dynaudio active speakers, and on that basis reject ATC actives? without having heard? And you say people should decide with their ears. Aren’t there some inconsistencies here...

No.

It is a valid question, I do own a turntable with a growing Vinyl collection which I do enjoy a lot.

Hope that answers your question.

I like way my music sounds with Naim, and I will not consider ATC actives, just because it's becoming flavour of the month. We've seen this before on the Naim forum with the Sarum wave of hyperbole, the Lavry ones, to a certain extent the Kudos ones and lets not forget tellurium. It's a wave of enthusiasm that seems to suggest you can improve on the Naim  intended performance for less money than Naim charge, but it doesn't work out like that to my ears.

One example of Naim performance is the Hi Cap. It seems like a simple enough device, but there is many tiny details such as matching of the regulators, wiring loom and positioning within the case that make the Naim product what it is, so actually, no, it's not that simple at all.

It's all fine, sources and speakers  may indeed change as indeed I need a much better turntable, and who knows what Rob Watts may invent in the future, and who knows what the ND555 sounds like, but my Naim amplifiers are staying put.

Until you hear one you just won't be able to understand what the fuss is all about, I'm afraid.

And why all this commotion about ATC? There's hundreds of speaker companies out there ....  and plenty of them available on second hand prices.

As I did indeed mention, Naim designed their preamps and power amps (including the interconnect that links them together) to work as one unit, so using a Naim preamp with another power amp or indeed an active speaker is not something that is acceptable to me for my system as I am not prepared to compromise the performance of my Naim amplifers - what I call the Naim intended performance.

Some people like aftermarket tweaks  but not for me.

 

analogmusic posted:
Innocent Bystander posted:

 

Analogmusic, interestingly a committed digitallistener, if I read this right you say Naim is best - but went for Dave (and Mojo). You rejected Dynaudio active speakers, and on that basis reject ATC actives? without having heard? And you say people should decide with their ears. Aren’t there some inconsistencies here...

No.

It is a valid question, I do own a turntable with a growing Vinyl collection which I do enjoy a lot.

Hope that answers your question. Yes, with regard to your moniker - but other inconsistencies remain.

I like way my music sounds with Naim, and I will not consider ATC actives, just because it's becoming flavour of the month. No problem, but similarly other people may consider them We've seen this before on the Naim forum with the Sarum wave of hyperbole, the Lavry ones, to a certain extent the Kudos ones and lets not forget tellurium. It's a wave of enthusiasm that seems to suggest you can improve on the Naim  intended performance for less money than Naim charge, but it doesn't work out like that to my ears. Erm Vertere cables instead of Superlumina?

 

It's all fine, sources and speakers  may indeed change as indeed I need a much better turntable, and who knows what Rob Watts may invent in the future, and who knows what the ND555 sounds like, but my Naim amplifiers are staying put. But a Naim DAC didn’t - presumably because you heard something that to you was indeed better than Naim’s design, despite Naim’s Intended Performance. Why is that not conceivable with an amp? (Is this not an inconsistency?)

Until you hear one you just won't be able to understand what the fuss is all about, I'm afraid. Indeed - so I don’t knock them, though I do ask about them, and as I have said before, I hope to hear one day. And until you heard a Chord DAC you didn’t know what all the fuss was about. And until you hear an ATC active speaker you won’t know what all the fuss is with them (and nor do/will I).

And why all this commotion about ATC? Maybe, just maybe, because they’re good? I personally have only heard ATC’s legendary dome midrange - and that was enough to buy a pair at the best part of £500 each to build into something myself. Meanwhile other people question similarly about Chord, when you leap in and cite Rob Watts’ latest musings (not an inconcistency here?)

As I did indeed mention, Naim designed their preamps and power amps (including the interconnect that links them together) to work as one unit, so using a Naim preamp with another power amp or indeed an active speaker is not something that is acceptable to me for my system as I am not prepared to compromise the performance of my Naim amplifers - what I call the Naim intended performance. How do you know it is compromised if you haven’t heard?

Some people like aftermarket tweaks  but not for me. Erm, you’ve played with cables? Different DACs? They’re as much aftermarket tweaks as trying different amps, whether or not built into speakers. 

 

Please see comments in red above. 

BTW, I am not advocating ATC amps over Naim, just the reasonableness of people being interested in trying them, though I do advocate active bi-/tri-amping, based on everything I understand about amps driving speaker drive units, supplemented by personal experience (and active speakers are the ultimate implication, removing speaker cables from the equation) - though I understand that Dynaudio, whose speakers I gather you believe are the bees knees, apparently didn’t do a good job of it to your ears.

analogmusic posted:

Naim do not advocate bi or tri amping in a passive system.

Please take the time to listen to an all Naim system. 

 

If you mean passive bi-amping, I don’t see the point, and your comment is disingenuous as that is wholly irrelevant to the active ARC consideration. 

Otherwise, I had the strange impression that Naim made the SBL and SL2 with removable crossovers, and something called a Snaxo, which I can only assume were designed to make active systems. If they didn’t think there was benefit, why would they do that?

 

The key here in the Naim method is that the crossover and amplifier are mechanically decoupled from the speaker

the snaxo crossover benefits from a very high quality power supply and does not share it with the amplifier (as is the case with ATC)

but the speaker cable is still there. 

Muttonjef posted:
analogmusic posted:

 

There's no company like Naim that have made a beginning to end system, from the source, amplifiers, crossovers, speakers, and cables.

 

Errrrr........Linn to name one! 

So when are you trading down to an nDAC from your DAVE? 

Audionote UK make beautiful sounding complete systems with incredible instrumental timbre and soundstage placement.The Prat is there when it should be and not the least fatiguing to listen to......all made in the UK - easily on par with Naim in their no compromise design philosophy.

 

analogmusic posted:

 

The key here in the Naim method is that the crossover and amplifier are mechanically decoupled from the speaker

the snaxo crossover benefits from a very high quality power supply and does not share it with the amplifier (as is the case with ATC)

but the speaker cable is still there. 

Now you’re arguing that a reason for not having active speakers as opposed to an active system is a) Naim power amps’ susceptibility to transmitted vibration and b) the desirability of having a speaker cable. 

Yes, that is my understanding with Naim’s current amp architecture - and would be relevant if the subject was ultimate performance, comparing active triamping against active speakers, but it isn’t: what you have been objecting to is a particular non-Naim active speaker implementation (that you heven’t heard), against various other speakers driven passively by various Naim amps, when the contribution of the passive crossover is also a factor.

 

And for clarity, in my previous post ‘ARC’ clearly was supposed to read ATC, and my statement that I couldn’t see the point, was referring to passive bi-/tri-amping, not to listening to an all-Naim system.

analogmusic posted:

You’re a bit lazy

no amount of discussion is a substitute for listening to a Naim system 

You don't have a Naim "system" analogmusic, so that's a bizarre comment to make.

To use a word you aimed at my system in an earlier post, you have a mongrel system. Which I would wager 99% the vast majority of us have.

No you don’t have a mongrel system

the mongrel systems are those which interfere between the Naim preamp and Naim power amp or the Naim supplied cable used to link them. These are all designed to work as one unit. 

It’s very simple : naim preamps cannot really drive long lengths of cable needed for active speakers unless modified by some method but I don’t know what that is...

hope that clarifies ?

 

 

 

analogmusic posted:

No you don’t have a mongrel system

the mongrel systems are those which interfere between the Naim preamp and Naim power amp or the Naim supplied cable used to link them. These are all designed to work as one unit. 

It’s very simple : naim preamps cannot really drive long lengths of cable needed for active speakers unless modified by some method but I don’t know what that is...

hope that clarifies ?

 

 

 

Silly me..................I've just realised you edited the post where you referred to my system as "mongrel".

Guys .... as I stated earlier and for reasons best known to himself, Analog continues to enjoy winding people up.

The reason? I’ve absolutely no idea, but I wouldn’t waste your breath.

Chill out and enjoy your music in your system ... which sounds awesome to you 😄

 

Wise words indeed Mr Frog.

I have a few days off work and i'm currently listening to "Claire Teal - A Tribute to Ella Fitzgerald"  accompanied by a large mug of tea and bacon sarnie. 

It sounds fabulous on my mongrel system with compromised active ATC speakers!

 
 
analogmusic posted:

You’re a bit lazy

no amount of discussion is a substitute for listening to a Naim system 

why don’t you visit a Naim dealer and hear what it’s all about ?

Assuming that was aimed at me, I’m unclear where you perceive laziness comes into it, though I am by nature a lazy person? However, in response: i) if it didn’t cost me a few £hundred quite apart from precious time I would be inclined to - as it is it likely will wait until after I retire and move home, and ii) why don’t you listen to active ATC40s and hear what it is all about?

Well, everyone is entitled to their opinion as to what sounds best to them.  There's a good deal of passion shown here, but let's keep it respectful please, and  I'm not entirely sure whether there's any point in further argument.

If you like what active ATC speakers do then there's nothing wrong that.  ATC are an excellent company (let's not forget that Naim chose them to supply the bass driver for the DBL) and I've heard their speakers on a few occasions sounding most impressive. 

And if you prefer active Naim (and I will be probably the last person to argue with you if you do), then that's fine too.  They each take very different approaches to activation, perhaps because one needs to be robust and convenient enough for a professional environment, whereas the other doesn't.  But I would imagine they are ultimately each trying to achieve much the same thing.

analogmusic posted:

 

It’s very simple : naim preamps cannot really drive long lengths of cable needed for active speakers unless modified by some method but I don’t know what that is... 

At last you have found what may be a valid point, though presumably the maximum length before noticeable degradation will in practice depend on the electrical characteristics of the cable, and of course there is the question as to whether the merits of the active speakers outweigh the demerits of the longer cable (which can only be determined by listening). Meanwhile from the system pics thread it seems far from uncommon for people to have the electronics midway bewteen the speakers, and not far from them...

Innocent Bystander posted:
analogmusic posted:

I’m on the search for those elusive SL2

with the aspiration for a Naim active system.... 

They crop up sufficiently regularly, though I don’t know how many potential buyers descend on each one. Most recent I’ve seen were advertised in March, possibly refreashed on 10th May though that is unclear. Still showing for sale (€3,500), but of course that doesn’t mean they are actually still available. From Italy (but if I was desperate enough for something I wouldn’t let the location stop me - I have sat on ferries for 7 hours and driven 700 miles to look at speakers, and bought an amp from Canada).

And they are indeed still available, so your search could be over...

analogmusic posted:

No you don’t have a mongrel system

the mongrel systems are those which interfere between the Naim preamp and Naim power amp or the Naim supplied cable used to link them. These are all designed to work as one unit. 

It’s very simple : naim preamps cannot really drive long lengths of cable needed for active speakers unless modified by some method but I don’t know what that is...

hope that clarifies ?

 

 

 

i don’t like personally the atc speakers, active or passive. But a lot of members like them, with a naim preamp for example, and it seems to work well. A member here went from active naim with a nac 552 and 3 nap 500 to a nac552 with active atc100. For him, this last combo is a real upgrade.  Long cable from the naim pre to the active atc seems to work very well for him.

Alonso posted:
Musicraft (Derby) posted:

Or the NAD C325BEE 50w/ch discontinued at £270. No issues over eleven years with 40's MK1 and 40's MK2's

 

From the NAP200 and SU2 ‘struggling’ with the SCM40 to NAD’s C325BEE and NAP100 having no issues with it

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yes, used sensibly then no issues using a C325BEE and a NAP100   and yes a Supernait 2 is significantly better, a NAP250DR offers another significant jump and so on  

Btw, we've also got clients who are happily using Solo Mini's with 40's

Musicraft (Derby) posted:

Yes, used sensibly then no issues using a C325BEE and a NAP100   and yes a Supernait 2 is significantly better, a NAP250DR offers another significant jump and so on  

Btw, we've also got clients who are happily using Solo Mini's with 40's

How refreshing! - A post that is not feeding the trolls!

I've been trying to reconcile these positions since you made the original post and reflecting upon it, I think the problem is what is that we define as 'sensibly' or 'having no problems with' - We all seem to understand 'no problems with / sensibly' differently - If one were to connect a 5i to a pair of SCM40 or even a pair of SCM150 nothing would "happen", they would still make music, it would still sound ok, there would still be 'no issues' . I guess the engine/chassis analogy helps here - Sure, a 3-cyl Normally aspirated 998cc fitted to an AM DB11 chassis will still take you to London and back at 70mph, it will get there with 'no issues' - the question is simply how much of the potential are we wasting by fitting such small engine to it? How much of the experience are we missing for not matching the engine performance to what the chassis can take... same with the SCM19/40/50 and the NAP100 and Naits and 5is I guess. 

Solo Mini/40's. Clients are fully aware that 40's will benefit from superior amplification. However for reasons such as space, budget, etc. they had to compromise. They like what they hear knowing that the door is open to upgrade. Clients have used the pairing for eight years

Btw, in 2010 a client bought 40's. demoed to him with amps such as a NAP250. Upgraded his amp in 2016 with one at over £3k. For six years he used 40's with an 80's 50w Philips Midi system

Musicraft (Derby) posted:

Solo Mini/40's. Clients are fully aware that 40's will benefit from superior amplification. However for reasons such as space, budget, etc. they had to compromise. They like what they hear knowing that the door is open to upgrade. Clients have used the pairing for eight years

Btw, in 2010 a client bought 40's. demoed to him with amps such as a NAP250. Upgraded his amp in 2016 with one at over £3k. For six years he used 40's with an 80's 50w Philips Midi system

Actually... you've hit the nail on the head. 'Space, budget, etc' - there are a few things that influence our purchase decision making outside the realm of what is purely sound quality /HiFi.... - I know it sounds obvious to you but it's something that puzzled me but yeah, you're right -

Sorry, I have not contributed much with this reply beyond a sense of realisation that everything is a compromise. 

I lived happy for years with a pair of Motive 3 and a 5si then at the shop they decide to hook an identical pair to a Krell Evolution 402e a customer had brought in... just for the giggles. it just blew my socks off and my jaw hit the ground .... ignorance is bliss they say... - I never knew what I was missing (although the Nait 5i / Motive 3 is a sensible match) How many of those customers with SCM40 hooked to smaller amps are happy because they don't know what they're missing (the ones who have not demoed their SCM40/50 with bigger amps before buying the smaller ones of course)

Below is an interesting article I found on Enjoy the Music. It's well worth a read in the context of the previous debate.

Active Versus Passive Loudspeakers

The performance benefits of active over passive loudspeakers is substantial. Even a system, which incorporates the best available stand-alone power amplifier, will never achieve the performance of a similar active system. Yet active loudspeakers are slow to be accepted for home use, when they are the only choice of the professionals who master your DVDs and CDs.


This is a strange anomaly that doesn't exist in other significant consumer markets. Take the motor industry for example. When buying a car, would you buy the chassis from Ford and the engine from General Motors. Of course not, the engine would have to be unnecessarily modified and overbuilt to be able to drive the many different transmission loads imposed upon it. Yet this is the accepted thinking in the market for residential hi-fi and home theatre installations, where the use of separately sourced amplifiers and loudspeakers, and the extra cost and inefficiency this entails, is not only tolerated, it is recommended! 

Why is it then that the obvious merits of Active loudspeakers long accepted as standard in the professional arena have been slow to be accepted for home use? 

Many Hi-Fi dealers pledge to sell customers the 'best system for their money', and yet they sell separates, when one of the many advantages of self powered active loudspeakers, is a considerable economy in cost, for any given performance level.

Why is this? The common complaint is one of inflexibility. Generally, you cannot upgrade an active speaker with new amplifiers, which limits consumer choice. This is a myth that relies more on the commercial sensibilities of dealers and their suppliers (the separates manufacturers) than on anything else. It is simply the fact that an active loudspeaker is an optimized coupling between amplifier and loudspeaker driver, and is the best solution, and an upgrade in the longer term is unlikely to be necessary. Thus an active system will always provide a superior result than its separate counterparts. Dollar for Dollar, in performance and value for money, there is no contest.

 

The Professional Approach
The demands of the recording industry were for highly accurate, ruggedly built speakers, capable of reproducing the dynamics and subtleties of the original performance, and frequently capable of being used on location as well as in the studio. 

The only solution to meet this need was to design and build the amplifiers and drive units as a single close matching entity in one enclosure. Hence, Active loudspeakers are today used by virtually every recording company, every major recording studio, and every major film studio.

What then are the main advantages of Active loudspeakers and 
disadvantages of Separates? 
Economics

Firstly, it costs a lot less to design and build high quality amplifiers and drive units in a single enclosure than it does to build similar quality separates. Equal or better performance at lower cost is a good starting point. The advent of DVD and Home Theatre has done much to take the 'black art' out of sound reproduction in the home. Gone are the wooden blocks, and green inks but crazily priced loudspeaker cables are still prevalent. Active loudspeakers only need a low cost, good quality microphone cable, to transmit the high impedance output from today's surround processors. Another major cost saving.

 

Crossovers: Electronic Vs. Passive
A major source of difficulty in designing a Passive loudspeaker system lies less in selecting the drive units or enclosure, but in designing and building the passive crossover. This device with its large capacitors and resistors receives the low impedance, full frequency output from the amplifier, and divides it between the two, three or more drive units. It is hardly surprising when taking a look at the size and complexity of these non-powered components that the passive crossover can absorb up to 20% of the amplifier's power output. And that's not the only problem! 

The magnitude of the frequency response of both active and passive loudspeakers can be controlled, with good design, to be within 1dB of one another. However, the phase component of the frequency response will always be better in an active system. The active filters produce better filter roll-off characteristics at crossover. Combine this with the inclusion of a variable all-pass filter at each crossover point to correct the phase response of the drive units through the crossover regions and the result is a loudspeaker with much better group delay characteristics. The benefit to the listener will be improved polar response and therefore radiated power response. Such an active loudspeaker will have a large stable sound field with stable imaging and source location. Very difficult and costly to achieve with a passive loudspeaker system.

A passive crossover will only operate correctly into the load impedance of a particular loudspeaker drive unit. However, the impedance of a loudspeaker drive unit will change with the amount of power input. This is because loudspeakers are very inefficient and most of the input power is dissipated as heat in the voice coil. As a result the temperature of the voice coil will rise and because copper has a positive temperature coefficient of resistance the impedance of the loudspeaker drive unit will rise. The result will be frequency response errors as the filters move from their designed response with increased input power. This effect does not occur in active loudspeakers where the filter response is maintained independent of input power to the loudspeaker.

 

Active Vs. Passive Amplifiers
The Separates amplifier manufacturer, has no idea what is going to be hung on the end of his product. Hence the need (as would be the case in the car analogy), to massively over-build to ensure that the amplifier will sound good with almost any speaker impedance and cable. It is not surprising that the massive amplifiers that typify the high end today are both costly and power consuming. 

These problems of efficiency, size and cost are much reduced in the case of amplifiers designed for Active loudspeakers. Here the designer has the luxury of designing an amplifier pack containing separate mono amplifiers that only have to power one drive unit, whose every performance characteristic, bandwidth, frequency range, power handling, and shortcomings, are known to the designer. 

Because the amplifiers in an active loudspeaker system are only required to operate over reduced frequency bands the intermodulation distortion products present in a passive system will be dramatically reduced, by typically 20dB, in an active system.

For a given amount of amplifier power, an active loudspeaker can be expected to produce approximately 6dB more level (twice as much) than the equivalent passive system. Furthermore, power for each drive unit may be more optimally specified in an active system. A tweeter, for example, requires much less power than a woofer to produce a balanced system performance.

A power amplifier designed specifically for the limited frequency range of an individual drive unit gains further benefits in efficiency, due to the fact that the wider the amplifier bandwidth, the less efficient it is. A well designed two or three way mono active power amp, for a given input and power rating, will always be capable of safely reaching higher peak SPL levels with less distortion than the equivalent single wide band power amp. This additional safety margin is now essential for coping with the wider dynamic range of DVD-Audio, SACD, DTS and Dolby Digital film soundtracks. In an active system the absence of both passive crossovers and long cable runs, together with a known amplifier damping factor, prevents the modification of the loudspeaker drive unit "Q" ensuring better controlled low frequency performance.

Companies such as ATC who design and build both amplifiers and drive units are able to achieve even closer system matching. An Active amplifier usually comprises two or three dedicated mono amplifiers on a plain chassis which is then bolted onto the rear of the loudspeaker enclosure. Thus, there is no need for the customer to pay for the elaborate aesthetics, heavy metal styling currently fashionable in stand-alone amplifiers, which does nothing to enhance performance.

 

The Future
With high bit rate multi-channel music now a reality, and DVD players like Pioneer's excellent Elite 57AI capable of playing both multi-channel SACD and DVD-Audio music, the Home Entertainment user of today has available sound quality sources never previously available in the home. Whilst there is much debate about the lack of digital interconnects affecting the quality of 5.1 SACD and DVD-Audio, the fact remains that the loudspeaker is still the weakest link in the reproduction chain. It surely makes good sense to install the most efficient transducer available, and that is the well designed and built self-powered Active loudspeaker. 

Those wishing to upgrade to multi-channel and home cinema or install a completely new system, owe it to themselves to seek out and listen to a good Active system, before making their purchase decision. Beware of dealers and installers who only advocate five or more stacked, costly separate power amps, and the expensive cables that connect them. 

Hopefully, the success of Active subs will perhaps lead the way to a greater acceptance of full frequency Active loudspeakers.

There are, of course, a number of well built passive monitors that give their owners a great deal of pleasure, perhaps where high SPLs and wide ranging dynamics are not required or practical. However, where the wide dynamics of DVD-Audio, SACD and film soundtracks can be replayed at realistic levels, the active loudspeaker comes into its own. After all, the SACD and DVD-Audio, DVD and CD you are listening to, were almost certainly monitored on them.

 

Jesus Analog you could copy and paste your posts from the old Hugo debate days. Does it matter a toss what label is on something, surely all that matters is getting the music to sound how you like it.

you talk about Naim as some sort of religion, they are just a manufacturer. You speak as though just cause Naim made speakers they will suite you, your room, your system. They may do, but then another speaker may also, and another speaker may sound more to your liking.

i hope when you have a full Naim system you arnt dissapointed.

If i can also add, you mention Naim SL2 speakers. Were these designed with the current DR'd amplifiers in mind. I don't know but i doubt it, so why would you believe these would provide any benefit over any other speaker manufacturers offerings.

oh because it has a badge that begins with N and ends in M on it.

i would like to know if you have heard said speakers in your system at home for a period of time. Or do we all know the answer to that one.

Muttonjef posted:

Below is an interesting article I found on Enjoy the Music. It's well worth a read in the context of the previous debate.

Active Versus Passive Loudspeakers

The performance benefits of active over passive loudspeakers is substantial. Even a system, which incorporates the best available stand-alone power amplifier, will never achieve the performance of a similar active system. Yet active loudspeakers are slow to be accepted for home use, when they are the only choice of the professionals who master your DVDs and CDs.


This is a strange anomaly that doesn't exist in other significant consumer markets. Take the motor industry for example. When buying a car, would you buy the chassis from Ford and the engine from General Motors. Of course not, the engine would have to be unnecessarily modified and overbuilt to be able to drive the many different transmission loads imposed upon it. Yet this is the accepted thinking in the market for residential hi-fi and home theatre installations, where the use of separately sourced amplifiers and loudspeakers, and the extra cost and inefficiency this entails, is not only tolerated, it is recommended! 

Why is it then that the obvious merits of Active loudspeakers long accepted as standard in the professional arena have been slow to be accepted for home use? 

Many Hi-Fi dealers pledge to sell customers the 'best system for their money', and yet they sell separates, when one of the many advantages of self powered active loudspeakers, is a considerable economy in cost, for any given performance level.

Why is this? The common complaint is one of inflexibility. Generally, you cannot upgrade an active speaker with new amplifiers, which limits consumer choice. This is a myth that relies more on the commercial sensibilities of dealers and their suppliers (the separates manufacturers) than on anything else. It is simply the fact that an active loudspeaker is an optimized coupling between amplifier and loudspeaker driver, and is the best solution, and an upgrade in the longer term is unlikely to be necessary. Thus an active system will always provide a superior result than its separate counterparts. Dollar for Dollar, in performance and value for money, there is no contest.

 

Ive removed most of quote for space.

i think this ignores one important aspect. What if you dislike the sound of the active amplifiers, but like the speakers.

Foxman50 posted:
Muttonjef posted:

Below is an interesting article I found on Enjoy the Music. It's well worth a read in the context of the previous debate.

Active Versus Passive Loudspeakers

The performance benefits of active over passive loudspeakers is substantial. Even a system, which incorporates the best available stand-alone power amplifier, will never achieve the performance of a similar active system. Yet active loudspeakers are slow to be accepted for home use, when they are the only choice of the professionals who master your DVDs and CDs.


This is a strange anomaly that doesn't exist in other significant consumer markets. Take the motor industry for example. When buying a car, would you buy the chassis from Ford and the engine from General Motors. Of course not, the engine would have to be unnecessarily modified and overbuilt to be able to drive the many different transmission loads imposed upon it. Yet this is the accepted thinking in the market for residential hi-fi and home theatre installations, where the use of separately sourced amplifiers and loudspeakers, and the extra cost and inefficiency this entails, is not only tolerated, it is recommended! 

Why is it then that the obvious merits of Active loudspeakers long accepted as standard in the professional arena have been slow to be accepted for home use? 

Many Hi-Fi dealers pledge to sell customers the 'best system for their money', and yet they sell separates, when one of the many advantages of self powered active loudspeakers, is a considerable economy in cost, for any given performance level.

Why is this? The common complaint is one of inflexibility. Generally, you cannot upgrade an active speaker with new amplifiers, which limits consumer choice. This is a myth that relies more on the commercial sensibilities of dealers and their suppliers (the separates manufacturers) than on anything else. It is simply the fact that an active loudspeaker is an optimized coupling between amplifier and loudspeaker driver, and is the best solution, and an upgrade in the longer term is unlikely to be necessary. Thus an active system will always provide a superior result than its separate counterparts. Dollar for Dollar, in performance and value for money, there is no contest.

 

Ive removed most of quote for space.

i think this ignores one important aspect. What if you dislike the sound of the active amplifiers, but like the speakers.

That's a very valid point.

Before I moved to the active 40's, I had the passive version with a 250DR. This combination sounded excellent in my view. However, for me, the active 40's were a significant step up which is clearly personal choice.

Clearly the choice of amp with the passives will have a significant impact as will personal preference. And for you the passives with a Vitus amp surpass the actives. I can't comment as I've not heard the combination which intrigues me.

 

Foxman50 posted:

If i can also add, you mention Naim SL2 speakers. Were these designed with the current DR'd amplifiers in mind. I don't know but i doubt it, so why would you believe these would provide any benefit over any other speaker manufacturers offerings.

oh because it has a badge that begins with N and ends in M on it.

i would like to know if you have heard said speakers in your system at home for a period of time. Or do we all know the answer to that one.

It’s very true that the SL2s were produced long before DR amplifiers or power supplies. But they do work very well together, as they do with SL speaker cables, which again were not around when the speakers were in production. The SL2 is the best speaker I’ve heard in my room, but I wouldn’t for one second say that others might not be better. That would be silly. 

Halloween Man posted:

I would trade the lot in for 40 actives and 272. You might find you have change left over.

Just started reading this post (5 pages still to go) & came accross this on page 1...

Just had to say Halloween Man has absolutely nailed it...   active ATCs and a 272 - Halloween Man knows what he's talking about 

 

I shall now read the next 5 pages, expecting to find many others saying the same, so apologies in advance for repitition.

pete T15 posted:

Look really smart in Satin Black ! Excuse the mess as we’re in the midst of unpacking and rearranging after building works . The ATCs arrived earlier than expected but I’m not complaining, it’ll spur me on to finish sooner .. 

They look gorgeous, congratulations! My passive ones are the other black but I would’ve gone with the satin black if it was available back in 2014. 

Foxman50 posted:
Muttonjef posted:

Congratulations!

I'm sure you will love them but give them time to settle in.

No he won't how can he he has a, what was it mongrel system 😜

Apologies.......I have not taken on board Analogues pontifications!! 🤣

As Analogue proclaimed, the ATC 40A's are a compromised design and clearly ATC have learned nothing since 1974!  

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