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As i've stated before, I've heard the 700 series' bookshelf speakers( I believe 705's?), very smooth midrange unbelievably smooth IMO. Too expensive for me but definitely a great sounding speaker...:)
 
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Many many things can be said about B&W. I remeber when I first discovered the brand at a local specialty shop, I asked what brands they stock and he said B&W. I said "that's it?" and he said there is no need to stock any other brand. I was a bit taken aback by this before I knew anything about the brand. after doing extensive research over the better part of the last several years, I have noe come to the conclusion that what the sales guy said has some validity. They really are a brand that covers just about the full spectrum of performance and price ranges for mildly serious to very serious listeners. Their main product lines range from the 300 series which is price competitive with mass produced brands sold at Best Buys and Circuit cities ranging all the way up the crazy expensive, for the vast majority of the public, nautilus speakers. They have full lines at various levels in between. The 600 series is a highly poplular line that again is not much if any more than the polks, infinitys, jbls, and klipsch speakers you can find at the large box stores. Then there is the 700 series that is in a whole other league of refinement. Then the 800 series is basically the top end excluding the crazy and highly unique nautilus speakers. You really can build a system for easily less than a $1000 to well up into the tens of thousands. They also have outdoor and inwall speakers and are constantly adding new product lines to further meet the ever expanding needs of the consuming audiophile public. They also have one of the best repuations in the audio industry for build quality, innovation, and reliability of their products. I could probably go on, but I think that pretty much covers it.
 
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I first auditioned them at a local B&M store. I liked the 600 series in the store over the PSB image series, which is the other brand that store has in stock. After a number of auditions, I finally took home a pair of 602s3 bookshelves. I hooked them up to my trusty Yamaha HTR-5280 and woila, I experienced the most disappointing audio experience in my life. For some reason the Yammie just couldn't get any sound from these speakers. I had to basically crank the volume, but I was getting very weak, and poor sound out of these. I came to the conclusion that these speakers needed something more than I could give them to sound right. As a result, I ended up with internet speakers, since I couldn't get what I wanted from a B&M speaker. I don't know what caused this, subsequent inquiries to B&W were unsatisfactory, so I'll leave it to someone else to explain it to me.
 
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Axiom. I have M22s up front. I am currently looking to upgrade to tower speakers. They don't really do it for me as a music speaker. I don't know where to go from here, though. I've auditioned many brands, Paradigm, which are way too bright for me, PSB, Polk, stay with Axiom?:confused:
 

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Hi Bruce and welcome to the Shack!

It seems like I remember seeing info on the Yamaha receivers, at least some of them, having a tendacy to be a little forward causing some speakers to be on the bright side. I'm kind of surprised with the Paradigm speakers being way too bright though. I've always thought those to be a very neutral speaker. I've never heard any, so I couldn't qualify the hearsay.
 
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It could have been the audition room at a local B&M, they didn't impress me, at least in that room. I haven't heard them at home, so that's all I'm going to say.
 
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if you like the sound of the Axioms maybe try one of their towers--perhaps the m60's or even the m80's. Take a look at rockets--real nice speakers, a bit more cash than the axioms though. Perhpas aperion. Any others in your local market? Maybe even go to some of the big box stores you might get lucky with:

Boston, altohugh these are brighter than paradigms

NHT's have a very distinct sound, laid back mid range sound that I call a "rock n roll speaker" that is very well liked. Strong bass and strong highs. Very good quality speakers with small foot prints on their towers as the woofers on side firing.

Definitive Technology, very disperse and enveloping sound with their multidirectional speakers--well liked by many

KEF--I wasn't impressed enough to justify the price, rather crisp and forward highs.

klipsch--doubtful you will like, if paradigms are bright to you, these will make your ears bleed. I have heard both the Boston and Klipsch side by side with paradigm studio and monitors and it is almost night and day, but the sound is obviously loved by many.

Energy--these have a very laid back sound I found similar to b&W 600's--might be worth a shot for you, quality stuff. they have a mid range sound or what I call a "british" sound to them--sorry but that is what I came up with--as opposed to a bright Boston or klipsch sound or a warm NHT, paradigm studio, POLK lsi, and especially dynaudio sound. Kind of a middle ground--if any of that makes sense.

polk rti's are way too forward and very bright in the upper mid ranges and boomy in the lower mid ranges--i made the guy play these before the beautifully relaxing sounding lsi's so as not to do an injustice to the rti's by comparison. It didn't matter, immediately I didn't like the rti's, the lsi's on the other hand are real nice, laid back and powerful sound to them that image very nicely, but they are rather expesive.

**** you may find you like Infinity's or even JBL's at a circuit city or best buy. That is of course just fine if that is what you like. Plus, it might save you some money.

Dynaudio--superb sound, very warm. they have some series that are affordable as well-very good neutral sound with excellent soundstaging and imaging--very powerful as well. As simple pair of their 2 way 6.5 inch bookshelves can easily fill a medium to large room with ample sound. I really liked some of their high end stuff--of course way out of budget.
AAD--a brand not that well known made by Phil Jones--he has almost a cult like following in the guitar world for building extremely powerful guitar amp/speakers using very small enclosure and drivers. He has a few lines that are truly awesome. the C series is very affordable and I love them--amazing soundstage--every bit as good as anything else I have heard anywhere near the price.

B&W of course you are familiar with them. if the 602's didn't impress then I guess the 603's or 604's aren't going to. Can you swing the 700 series? The floorstanders especially are amazing with the FST midrange. Again, huge step up in price, but I though I would throw that out.

Your description of the paradigms has me scratching my head a bit. The monitors series to me sounded very similar to the 600 series of b&w's kind of mid range first "british" sound to them, I don't consider them bright. the studios I found very laid back and nuetral with much better depth on the low end, and better imaging. very crips highs with nothing forward at all--I liked, but can't afford. Again I wouldn't call them bright--of course these were side by side with Bostons and Klipsch so they still may be a bit bright, but I didn't think so.

As you can see I have auditioned literally every speaker I could in my area. I hope my above rambling helps. But bottom line is you have to go out and listen to as many as you can to find at least one or two that you like. Then come back on here and ask others what internet brand sounds similar to those if you are not comfortable just buying the speakers locally. Be sure to double check return policies on anything you buy. Also, keep in mind that some of these speakers are rather costly and it may not make too much sense to drive them with your current receiver--not that there is anything wrong at all with the quality yamaha you have, it is just that you wouldn't buy a mercedes and then put cost cutter brand generic oil in it or get your tires at Wal mart, if you know what I mean. Best of luck in your search. Send me a PM if you need any assistance.
 

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I wouldn't hesitate to recommend Yamaha and B&W together, you really need to pay attention to the 4 ohm capabilities of the receiver.

The B&W's are typically less sensitive then others. I prefered Definitve (typically 90-93dB efficiency) cause it gave me the powerhouse I wanted, without sacrificing accuracey.

Personally after hearing Phil's system I can firmly say that you need to use some pretty powerful amps to drive B&W's speakers better. For the 600/700 series, 150-250w RMS amps and for the 800 series would say 250-350w+ RMS is prefered and 2-4ohm stable.

~Bob
 

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I have a B&W subwoofer, the ASW600. It's a sealed 10" sub with a 150W (RMS) amp. I auditioned about a dozen subs in the price range, and this is the only one that got it right for me. I've read of many subs with more output, but if you're looking for a $500 sub thats very, very tight, I think this is the one to beat. My friend auditoined a bunch of subs and recently bought the ASW650.

On the contrary, I went back and auditioned the 600 series floorstanders and found them to be bloated/sloppy in the low end (they were being driven by a 90W/channel reciever.) I also listened to the 700 series floorstanders powered by a McIntosh amp. Much better and very, very smooth. Too smooth for rock and roll in my opinion.
 

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Honestly naut, I think its the fact that you are listening to a sealed sub, which IMO is way more musical and tight then ported ones. Was listening to music on a vented Velodyne sub my dad has. And recentlyafter building mine I was shocked at how sloppy it was on music.

~Bob
 

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I'm sure that's it too. Sealed subs are rare at the $500 price point.
 

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Hello Everyone,

New member here. I have been enjoying this site for a while now and recently upgraded my entire system.

Previous system -

Receiver - Denon DRA 295
DVD Player - JVC (Nothing special for sound but has a great pic.)
Speakers - Energy C1
Subwoofer - Energy S8.3 (Purchased from the Good Guys during there going out of business sale for 99.00 brand new.)

New System -
Receiver - NAD T743
CD Player - NAD C521BEE
Speakers - B&W 602 S3

I still have not picked up a center. But will be in the future. The Energy's will go in the back and the sub will get used when my room becomes larger. The sub is overkill in my current 10' x 10' room. I have nevet been able to get it to sound that good. I'm thinking a sealed sub in this smaller room room would have been more prudent. But at 99.00 bucks I could not resist trying the Energy. Which is in current production and retails for 349.00.

My big question being. How long do B&W's take to break in. The 602's seem a bit crispy up top right now and the mids seems to be pushed back. The bass sems like it could go deeper. But im thinking some of this could be my room.

Any thought's or comments would be appreciated. I'm looking forward to getting to know everyone and contributing when I can.

Thanks
 

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Hello arclight... I'm not familiar with B&W, but wanted to say I'm glad to see you posting. Looks like joined up a while back. Good to see ya!
 

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i had a set of 602s, 601s and the centre they are gread budget speakers.

now i have the THX system, they are realy rather excellent, they retailed at close to $5000 but due to an ebay fluke i got the full set (5.2) for $800. the subs ive moved on from, but i cant see me changing speakers in any hurry.

im surprised anyone would bother with them in america, in the uk they are very viable due to the huge costs of things like m&k (rougthly twice the price of the usa) and the lack of axiom/polk/kilpsh etc. but in the usa i can imagine them being very expensive compared to the competition.

b&ws are starting to dissapear from retailers here, their lines havnt been updated in years so retailers are starting to favour kef and montitor audio, i do hope they recover from this.

edd
 

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Hello Everyone,

New member here. I have been enjoying this site for a while now and recently upgraded my entire system.

Previous system -

Receiver - Denon DRA 295
DVD Player - JVC (Nothing special for sound but has a great pic.)
Speakers - Energy C1
Subwoofer - Energy S8.3 (Purchased from the Good Guys during there going out of business sale for 99.00 brand new.)

New System -
Receiver - NAD T743
CD Player - NAD C521BEE
Speakers - B&W 602 S3

I still have not picked up a center. But will be in the future. The Energy's will go in the back and the sub will get used when my room becomes larger. The sub is overkill in my current 10' x 10' room. I have nevet been able to get it to sound that good. I'm thinking a sealed sub in this smaller room room would have been more prudent. But at 99.00 bucks I could not resist trying the Energy. Which is in current production and retails for 349.00.

My big question being. How long do B&W's take to break in. The 602's seem a bit crispy up top right now and the mids seems to be pushed back. The bass sems like it could go deeper. But im thinking some of this could be my room.

Any thought's or comments would be appreciated. I'm looking forward to getting to know everyone and contributing when I can.

Thanks
arclight, if you haven't picked up a centre yet, I can recommend the B&W LCR600 is a great match for the 602's. I am still using it having traded my 603s in for 802D, but I still like the LCR600 in form and function enough not to upgrade it yet
 
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I own a pair of 704 floor-standers, I bi-amped them using an Arcam Alpha 8 integrated for the tweeters and an Arcam Alpha 8 Power for the bass drivers. The clarity and impact is stunning and I am really happy with my choice of speakers.

On my PC I use a pair of LM1 leisure monitors for sound and a REL Q150, it sounds great for music and the odd game.
 

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arclight, the B & W website has some great info on breaking their speakers in. Here is the link: http://www.bwspeakers.com/index.cfm.../ObjectID/F5CA2E74-3D20-11D4-A67F00D0B7473B37. I think they give good advice on breaking a speaker in. There is controversy as to if breakin even exists, but, I think you will hear a difference after you get some time on the speakers. I have heard those speakers in a guys home (stereo set up) and was quite impressed with their sound. You should enjoy them for a long time. Dennis
 

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Actually I have returned those speakers and ended up with some PSB Image B25's I like alot better. I have also decided to stay with a 2 channel system instead of doing a full blown theater. I'm now using a C352 instead of the T743.

Thanks for the info anyway.
 
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