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Replacing my old Apogee Centaurus Slant 6s.


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Lapsed audiophile looking to get back into the hobby. Looking for advice on new speakers to replace my old Apogee Centaurus Slant 6s.

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Welcome to SNA! My recommendation for speaker advice is: don't listen to anybody who recommends speakers. Speakers are very personal, and are the second most important component when it comes to sound. The most important component is the room. You need speakers that are appropriate for your room - i.e. the size and where you want to place them. Your room dictates your speaker choice - e.g. don't buy rear ported speakers or dipoles if you have no choice but to place them against a wall. Don't buy massive speakers if your room is small or vice-versa. 

 

Then there are all the other considerations - how loud you want it to go, whether you have certain beliefs or preferences (e.g. point source, horns, panels, etc), whether you need bass, price, and styling. My wife won't divorce me if my system sounds bad. She doesn't care. But she WILL divorce me if I spend more than the house on speakers, or if I put an ugly monstrosity in our living room. So those factors are important as well! Unless you don't mind listening to expensive speakers in a dog house 😨

 

None of us can decide your requirements for you. Only you can decide. 

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All excellent advice! Unfortunately, there are also so many options to choose from and frankly so few places to actually go and listen to them, even here in New York City, it's easy to get paralyzed just thinking about it. I live in an apartment, so most listening will be at moderate to low volumes, which actually suits my taste at this point in my life. I listen mostly to jazz and classical, with some R&B, soul, classic rock. I loved my super-revealing old Apogee ribbon speakers, but my 8-year old son ripped one of the ribbons by poking a stick through it. Plus they are tall and ugly and I need to move on. The listening room is also our medium-sized living room, so I'm never going to get perfect speaker placement. Speakers that need pinpoint placement to get any sense soundstage are out. I have decent front-end equipment circa late 1990s (Sota Star Sapphire turntable, Eminent Technology linear tone arm, Audible Illusions tube preamp, McCormack DNA 1.5 150 watt amp) all of which I'm happy with. Would be happy to look into used equipment to get bang for my buck. Have seen lots of B&W, Focal, Revels, KEFs available right now very close to where I live. Excited to get back into the music again. I'd welcome advice from anyone for how to even get started with the process.

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Sounds like you are doing a good job of narrowing down your list by yourself 😉

 

You already have: 

- needs to fit a medium sized room (all large speakers and horns eliminated) 

- can not be placed out in the room (all dipoles and omnis eliminated, and all speakers with rear-facing ports) 

- must be child friendly (all speakers without grills eliminated, you also need speakers that can not be easily knocked over) 

- prefer something super-revealing

- does not need to go loud, must be apartment friendly (indicates a preference for smaller speakers) 

 

The B&W's, Focals, Revels, and KEF's all suit your requirements, but need further checking. They all have different characteristics and are designed to meet different goals. 

 

Keep going. The more you think about your requirements, the more you will narrow down your list. 

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On 10/04/2024 at 2:47 PM, Keith_W said:

(all large speakers and horns eliminated) 

I disagree.

 

On 10/04/2024 at 2:11 PM, ydubs said:

All excellent advice! Unfortunately, there are also so many options to choose from and frankly so few places to actually go and listen to them, even here in New York City, it's easy to get paralyzed just thinking about it. I live in an apartment, so most listening will be at moderate to low volumes, which actually suits my taste at this point in my life. I listen mostly to jazz and classical, with some R&B, soul, classic rock. I loved my super-revealing old Apogee ribbon speakers, but my 8-year old son ripped one of the ribbons by poking a stick through it. Plus they are tall and ugly and I need to move on. The listening room is also our medium-sized living room, so I'm never going to get perfect speaker placement. Speakers that need pinpoint placement to get any sense soundstage are out. I have decent front-end equipment circa late 1990s (Sota Star Sapphire turntable, Eminent Technology linear tone arm, Audible Illusions tube preamp, McCormack DNA 1.5 150 watt amp) all of which I'm happy with. Would be happy to look into used equipment to get bang for my buck. Have seen lots of B&W, Focal, Revels, KEFs available right now very close to where I live. Excited to get back into the music again. I'd welcome advice from anyone for how to even get started with the process.

Please describe your listening room, you didn't really cover the most important aspect.... dimensions, ceiling height, wall surfaces, floor/ceiling surfaces, level of absorption (is it treated)...  

I'm not the best person to speak to about this... I love large speakers, I'm also not really into bookshelves and small speakers... they just don't do it for me.

But happy to share my opinion. 

 

For any mid size room, this popped into my head (I'm a JBL fan). 

https://www.jbl.com/bookshelf-speakers/4349.html

https://www.soundstageaustralia.com/index.php/reviews/559-jbl-4349-studio-monitor-loudspeakers

 

 

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12 hours ago, Grizaudio said:

I disagree.

 

I think it's great for the OP to have multiple perspectives to help inform his choices, so I am glad you jumped in. Yes, I agree that large speakers might work for his space (depending on how big it is). The reason I don't think they would work well is because large speakers with widely spaced drivers get further away from the point source ideal. You need a certain distance from them before the sound "comes together". There are large speakers which are point source, e.g. KEF Blades, Tannoy concentrics, Fyne speakers, PSE-144. I think it would have been better if I said that the drivers should be close together, e.g. in an MTM configuration. Rather than widely spaced apart, like Avantgarde horns. Would you agree? 

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10 hours ago, Keith_W said:

 

I think it's great for the OP to have multiple perspectives to help inform his choices, so I am glad you jumped in. 

 

Sure, absolutely. But its difficult to recommend anything until we know more about the room, and seated distance. Even then its impossible.

 

I threw in the JBL idea, sort of tongue in cheek. 

At the end of the day.... How does anyone recommend a speaker to anyone.

 

I have two suggestions:

1. The OP needs to listen to as many speakers as they can... create a short list of what they like. 

2. If possible try the shortlisted speakers in their own room. Or buy a speaker with the objective measurements they are seeking (SPL output, directivity, response, size, aesthetics etc.) 

 

That's it really. 

 

10 hours ago, Keith_W said:

The reason I don't think they would work well is because large speakers with widely spaced drivers get further away from the point source ideal. You need a certain distance from them before the sound "comes together". There are large speakers which are point source, e.g. KEF Blades, Tannoy concentrics, Fyne speakers, PSE-144. I think it would have been better if I said that the drivers should be close together, e.g. in an MTM configuration. Rather than widely spaced apart, like Avantgarde horns. Would you agree? 

 

On 10/04/2024 at 2:47 PM, Keith_W said:

(all large speakers and horns eliminated) 

 

The slant's aren't exactly small.... 

A large point source would certainly work, but without knowing room size, seated distance and all the other stuff I asked, its difficult to respond.

 

Personal preferences in aesthetics, size, bandwidth, frequency response, directivity, sensitivity, WAF, etc etc  all make it so up in the air. 

 

I personally wouldn't rule out waveguides and large drivers...yet.... if seated distance is about 2.5m the big stuff is all pretty viable. 

 

This thread is kind of pointless, until the OP does some foot work & listening.  

 

 

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Yes, indeed, my original post WAS kind of pointless, and yes, there really is not good way to recommend speakers to anyone. I guess I was looking for some general ideas for how to even get started, as the options seem completely limitless, especially when one factors in used and vintage gear. When I was a bachelor, I had the luxury  of a room that was perfect for listening where the Apogees, properly set up and aligned, even though they lacked deep bass, created a sweet spot that was just about as perfect (to me) as anything I had ever heard in a home environment. Here is my current listening environment. Room is 21' x 14' x 9' high. One long wall and one short wall has window, the other short wall has a large entranceway. The way the room is arrayed, the only good place to put the speakers is along one of the long walls opposite the long wall with windows. There are bookshelves on some walls, and a large oriental rug on the floor. I am completely aware that this is beneath suboptimal, so feel free to tell me that I shouldn't bother and just go with some Bose system. Keith_W's post was actually pretty helpful, as I think it gave a good summation of speakers I can eliminate. I guess that's all I'm looking for right now - A way to take things OFF my list so that I can start to get a handle on how to tackle this.

Thanks, everyone!

 

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On 10/04/2024 at 2:47 PM, Keith_W said:

 

- needs to fit a medium sized room (all large speakers and horns eliminated) 

-

 

If these estimates are roughly correct for room size..

Size / square footage

Tiny 7 ft x 10 ft (70 square feet)

Small 10 ft x 13 ft (130 square feet)

Medium 12 ft x 18 ft (216 square feet)

Large 15 ft x 20+ ft (300 square feet)

 

Large speakers seem to work In my medium sized room, I sit around 2.7m away from my speakers, set about 3m apart & about 650mm from the rear wall, I've had a few types of speakers in this position, my Avalon's, which were down firing ports, & my current YG's which are sealed.

 

 

1 hour ago, ydubs said:

 The way the room is arrayed, the only good place to put the speakers is along one of the long walls opposite the long wall with windows

 

 

Mine are too, speakers are along one of the long wall opposite the long wall with around a 18ft window, & welcome to SNA.

 

Edited by Bass13
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  • 1 month later...


On 10/4/2024 at 12:11 PM, ydubs said:

The listening room is also our medium-sized living room, so I'm never going to get perfect speaker placement. Speakers that need pinpoint placement to get any sense soundstage are out. I have decent front-end equipment circa late 1990s (Sota Star Sapphire turntable, Eminent Technology linear tone arm, Audible Illusions tube preamp, McCormack DNA 1.5 150 watt amp)

Going off this info and no budget mentioned, I would assume you may accept the extremely large range of suggestions new and used available to you in the US audio market. It’s not as difficult as has been suggested to you although those considerations should be noted.

 

The vast majority of speakers out there except for extremely large and panel design pinpoint soundstage (your Apogees ribbons are pinpoint) speakers would likely suit. Being in NY and wider US audio community there would be an incredible amount of good used audio options from audio shops, US eBay, US Audiomart, Audiogon and others.

 

To match your still very good vintage audio quality preamp and power amp, subject to room and furniture placement issues, I would be considering both larger bookshelf or stand mount speakers, small to medium size floor standing 3 way speakers or very good 2 way driver designs - Wilson Sasha and Watt Puppy, Spendor S100 and similar models both older and current, Yamaha Ns1000 or NS5000, B&W 801 and dozens of variant models 802/3/4/5 etc, Dynaudio various floorstanders and stand mounts, Proac Reference 5, 3.8 and others current; Audio Physic various floor standers; ATC 40, 50, 100; Avalon Eidelon; Eggleston Works Andra and many others.

 

The latest speakers with international fame and considered to be among the best but not cheap are Wilson Sasha, Magico, B&W higher end, YB prevalent in the US etc, although these sell for around $20-50,000 new, you should be able to find used lower range 10-15 year old models for around $4000-10000 if you want to spend that kind of money. Audiomart currently has several Magico S1 and A3 speakers for $4000-7000 and there is one YB speaker for $11000 USD.

 

Perhaps look for several you like and come back here for experiences and comments. It should also be noted that the Apogee ribbon tweeter sounds as good as any modern day $50,000+ speaker tweeter, technology has not improved for subjective hearing as much as one might think and you may not hear a big improvement in tweeter performance alone with replacement speaker options.

Edited by Al.M
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