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Moving from floorstanders to standmounts - advice please?


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Hi all

After years of owning floorstanders, because I always loved their oomph, in particular the bass and bottom end in a large room I'm slowly starting to "like" the sound of standmounts and understand the benefits they can bring. Perhaps I was inspired by twwen2's thread :) .

 

Anyhow, I've had a listen to the Kef LS50's and while I could certainly hear a lot more accuracy I didn't really fall in love with the sound (not yet anyway). I could appreciate why people like them but to my ears they were a little cold. I didn't think I would enjoy them. The guys at the shop said they will loosen up a bit as they only had about 20 hours listening time.

 

Then I had a listen to the Spendor SP3/1R2 and I thought I really like these. More enjoyable for my years. How can I describe it - more tuneful, warmer and yet still a lot of detail?

 

Would love to get advice from anyone who has been down this path.

 

I have the rega brio-r/rega dac combo and mainly listen to alt. rock, electronic, dance music in a room 5m by 4m approx. My budget is about $3.5k but maybe can push it to $5k.

 

Thx

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Ah yes, I have gone down that path many times! 

Good stand mounts tend to draw you into the music more I have found. The midrange and highs tend to become the focus and that is all your brain needs to decipher.

 

Of speakers in your budget other contenders could be Harbeth Super HL5, ATC SCM 19, PMC TB2i. I have not heard the Lenehan Audio ML-2 but a few friend's have and were amazed.

Amp and speaker matching is the other half of the equation though...

Edited by vmhf
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Interesting.  

 

I am moving from my ML3 floor-standers to ML2 LE standmounts and then to some wild isobaric standmounts   My reason for moving is purely sound quality.  The floor-standers can go a little lower - maybe - but for me the smaller cabinet of the standmounts means less cabinet resonances and a cleaner sound.

 

I cant really advise any more than that except to listen to stuff.

 

Having heard the LS50 I know where you are coming from - when I heard it I went WOW - beautiful clear and present mid-range - but when some more complex stuff was put through them they went a bit to pieces.  If you were into Sinatra, Dianna Krall etc like me I would suggest hearing the LS50 with some good valve gear like Earls Topaz amps - it would sound magical IMHO.  But for what you listen to I don't think it would be ideal.  

 

Heard the Spendors years ago and can easily see where for what you listen to they would appeal.

 

Myself and Doggiehowser recently heard some really well run in Lenehan ML1 Plus R's that are in your price range and were pretty impressed - both of us know the ML1's pretty well but were really taken back by how well they sounded due to the run in.  If you can wrangle a listen worth doing so.  The only issue is the bass since you listen to rock - its good for a speaker that size but only goes down to 50 hz or so at higher volume levels.  The ML2's would be the better choice for you but are I think right at the limit of your price range at $4500 - but if you can reach that high most certainly worth thinking about and having a listen to.   The Lenehan S2's would be probably be the best choice in the Lenehan range - trouble is I don't know, unless you can make it up to the Lenehan factory on the Gold Coast how you would wrangle a listen - not a lot have been sold. 

 

All I can really suggest is to keep checking stuff out - enjoy it - its one of the fun parts of this hobby.

 

Was going to mention all the speakers VMHF did but he beat me to it - they are the ones I would be seeking out and listening to.

 

Thanks

Bill

Edited by bhobba
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Hi K3;

Similarly to Vmhf, I started out using bookshelf speakers when I first got into hi fi. Then as budget grew, I started to use bigger floorstanders. Recently I moved my hi fi into a very small listening room of similar dimensions to you room (a formal sitting room !) for the benefit of house harmony. I realised my then very large speakers ( Gryphon Atlantis) did not work very well in the small room. I then started looking into small speakers to use in the room.

Having tried about three sets since moving to the smaller room, at the moment I have a pair of acoustic energy reference 1 and have a set of Dynaudio special 25 on the way.

In short, I am now remembering why bookshelf speakers are so addictive. There is a freedom from cabinet resonance in a well designed small speaker (most) floorstanders cannot match. The possible benefit's this provides include freedom from box colouration, which improves transient response, speed and clarity amongst other things. IMO it is probably easier to get a small speaker right than a similarly priced floorstander.

I mirror the sentiments above and recommend the atc's, pmc's and additionally dynaudio's and acoustic energy reference (either ae1 mk iii or the newer reference which I have). The dynaudio's if driven well can be brilliant IMO, not too bright, but good dynamics. The Atc's are similar in that they need a good amp, they are possibly more neutral in the monitor vein. The acoustic energy reference are probably not quite as hard to drive but add detail and excellent dynamics into the mix.

The other issue, I think it can really benefit the system, even in a small room, to add subwoofer/s into the mix with your kind of music.

Best of luck with your search. P.s I am sure you have seen it but twwen2's reviews are gold with regards small speakers.

Late edit; neat petite sx could be another god proposition at this price.

Ray

Edited by Raeyz
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I understand the standmount vs floorstander debate very well and there are many upsides of each speaker type there is no real right answer, just a case of the speaker suiting the application and room dimensions - IMHO.

 

For the record, I do like standmount and floorstanders.

 

IMO the type of speakers you purchase really do need to reflect the type of music you listen to, and that's why I went back to floorstanders.  As good as a fully optimised standmount can sound, ultimately for my type of music I had the desire to return to floorstanders.  I really want massive SPL's and slam factor, and I crave it when I play large scale, complex music such as Pink Floyd, SRV and the like. 

 

I kind of like the philosophy that a big room + big speakers + big amps = big sound!!  It may not be for everybody but it certainly works for me. :thumb:

 

At times I do miss the wonderful presentation a fully optimised standmount can deliver, but I have no regrets going back to, and maybe finally settling on a standmount. 

 

Cheers

 

Pete 

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To my my mind the only arguments for standmounts are the argument for putting proportionately more of the speaker budget towards the woofer/tweeter where budget is fairly limited, and the argument for causing less LF havoc in a small untreated room where one doesn't even have recourse to PEQ. If I had some good floorstanders already, myself I'd try everything I could to optimise in-room bass before chucking away an octave of music. 

 

Perhaps its just the sound of another speaker you like and not its standmountiness? You dont really say what you don't like about your floorstanders. 

 

Cheers

B

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To my my mind the only arguments for standmounts are the argument for putting proportionately more of the speaker budget towards the woofer/tweeter where budget is fairly limited, and the argument for causing less LF havoc in a small untreated room where one doesn't even have recourse to PEQ. If I had some good floorstanders already, myself I'd try everything I could to optimise in-room bass before chucking away an octave of music. 

 

Perhaps its just the sound of another speaker you like and not its standmountiness? You dont really say what you don't like about your floorstanders. 

Hi B

You've raised some good points here which will help me clarify. I still like my floorstanders. I didn't audition stand mounts before now because I thought they would not be able to produce great bass sound for the music I listen to.

What changed my mind was when I finally decided to audition quality stand amounts recently, I was surprised to find out I may not my miss floor standers. I think this is because of your first point above.

I know many out there actually prefer stand mounts. I don't think I am in that camp. But what I realise now is that for the same budget, if I invest in stand mouts I get a higher return...

k3 

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BTW thanks for all the suggestions everyone!

Now I need to work out how to audition some of these in Sydney! Would love than chance to audition Harbeths and Lenehans properly.

 

Great to hear.

 

To hear speakers that aren't stocked by dealers do a post and knowing the guys in our little community its quite likely someone will only be too happy to have you over.

 

Thanks

Bill

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