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Just a quick note- You might want to take a look towards the end of the "Which Speakers to get?" thread. Someone there mentioned GoldenEar Triton speakers, and I took the time to write up a bit of background info on those and the MartinLogan Motion speakers (they use similar tweeters).

Cheers
Ikarius
 

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Discussion Starter #62
I just checked it out Ikarius - thanks for the heads up! I came across them while I was doing google searches and also liked the reviews I saw.

Fortunately for me, the local audio shop carries these. So, I will be able to listen to the Studio 100's, the CM709's and the Triton II's all at the same location. I did listen to the Studio 100's yesterday for a little while. I plan on going back for a longer period of time so that I can listen to all 3 to try to wrap my head around different "sound" in speakers.

For those near Wisconsin, I highly recommend University Audio - Ben and Dave are both great guys.
 

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Discussion Starter #63
I was able to give the Studio 100s a short listen time this past week. I am planning on another trip shortly to spend a bit more time listening to them and then the CM709s. Some initial thoughts:

- They had a nice wide soundstage. The room is about 15'X15'X10' and I moved all around the room and did not feel there was a significant degradation in sound - I even stood behind them and noticed just a slight change. With the layout of my room and the potential to have the mains closer to side walls, I felt this speaker would be able to manage that well (properly treated of course).

- Bass and mids were tight and very clean. I did feel some thump (is this what is referred to as an ability to "dig deep"?)

- I did feel like the tweeter was a bit "in my face" at first (I think this is what people with more knowledge experience than I call "bright" or "detailed"). As I continued to listen, I began to appreciate the ability to pick out individual sounds (intake of breath, etc.). As this is the 1st speaker I have had a real chance to listen to, I had no real point of reference for that level of detail

- Vocals were incredibly crisp - both the Sara Mclachlan and Queen tracks were a true joy to listen to.

- Aesthetically speaking, a very pleasing speaker. I also like the fact that 2 centers are offered (did not actually listen to them) and one is similar in design / size to the mains but turned 90 degrees.

- I enjoyed listening to the varied orchestral tracks. I felt that I could "see" where each section was actually located - horns came through very well.

All in all, I was pleased with my 1st audition and felt that the Studio 100s would be one of the few I would like to audition in my own room.

On a different note, someone in a different thread linked a deep discount sale to a set of Emp Tek e55ti tower speakers. I had been monitoring Craigslist for a set of towers to replace the Bose Acoustimass 10 system in my living room and go 2 channel. I decided to pull the trigger and grab a set and received them yesterday. I will post pics and an initial review as soon as I get them all set up.
 

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You will probably find that the speakers if designed right will have lots of detail and no matter where you have the volume will still be that way without being hard on the ears or tiring.
 

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- Bass and mids were tight and very clean. I did feel some thump (is this what is referred to as an ability to "dig deep"?)
I think that is "Slam". Digging deep is the ability to play really low notes



All in all, I was pleased with my 1st audition and felt that the Studio 100s would be one of the few I would like to audition in my own room.
Thats great news!
 

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On a different note, someone in a different thread linked a deep discount sale to a set of Emp Tek e55ti tower speakers. I had been monitoring Craigslist for a set of towers to replace the Bose Acoustimass 10 system in my living room and go 2 channel. I decided to pull the trigger and grab a set and received them yesterday. I will post pics and an initial review as soon as I get them all set up.
Yeah GranteedEV posted them. Very nice purchase, you got them for a song :D

- I did feel like the tweeter was a bit "in my face" at first (I think this is what people with more knowledge experience than I call "bright" or "detailed").
I think thats called a "forward" speaker.
 

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ALMFamily,
I'm reading this thread with a lot of interest. I'm in a similar situation as I beginning to plan for my next Home Theater.
I'm planning for a 5.1 system and have approximately the same budget as you, although I will need to upgrade my subwoofer.
My usage of the system is similar to you with a little less music (95% movies, sports, TV and 5% for music)
I'm also operating under the assumption that a great speaker for music will be great for movies.
I know you can't demo all speakers, however, a few brands/names that I did not see on your list and would enjoy to see your opinions are:
- Aperion Verus Towers (ID Retailer)
- JTR Speakers (either Triple 8s or Triple 12s) - Getting rave reviews across forums for playing with movies
- Def. Tech. Mythos ST(S)s and/or BiPolar Speakers (BP8080ST) - Typically easy to demo at box stores such as Best Buy

One question, how to you plan to incorporate the ID brands into your journey (Salk, Ascend, Philharmonic)? Do you plan to arrange trial periods in your home for demo and then ship back the speakers?

I took the course of running out and demoing speakers without much thought to how to compare. I really look forward to your reviews and will follow along. Thanks for what you're doing.
Regards,
Robert
 

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Discussion Starter #68
ALMFamily,
I'm reading this thread with a lot of interest. I'm in a similar situation as I beginning to plan for my next Home Theater.
I'm planning for a 5.1 system and have approximately the same budget as you, although I will need to upgrade my subwoofer.
My usage of the system is similar to you with a little less music (95% movies, sports, TV and 5% for music)
I'm also operating under the assumption that a great speaker for music will be great for movies.
I know you can't demo all speakers, however, a few brands/names that I did not see on your list and would enjoy to see your opinions are:
- Aperion Verus Towers (ID Retailer)
- JTR Speakers (either Triple 8s or Triple 12s) - Getting rave reviews across forums for playing with movies
- Def. Tech. Mythos ST(S)s and/or BiPolar Speakers (BP8080ST) - Typically easy to demo at box stores such as Best Buy

One question, how to you plan to incorporate the ID brands into your journey (Salk, Ascend, Philharmonic)? Do you plan to arrange trial periods in your home for demo and then ship back the speakers?

I took the course of running out and demoing speakers without much thought to how to compare. I really look forward to your reviews and will follow along. Thanks for what you're doing.
Regards,
Robert
First off Robert - welcome to HTS!! :wave: I found this forum about 4 months ago, and it is my new favorite home. :D

Thanks for the suggestions for speakers - I will plan on looking at them in the next couple days to see if I can add them to my list. I have been doing my best to avoid the big box store for listening to a speaker - just so much traffic and whatnot. I have yet to try the Magnolia in the Best Buy about an hour away to see if it is set-up any better - might have to give that a looksy. Fortunately for me, I am located within reasonable driving distance of a few different smaller shops as well.

As far as the ID speakers, I was able to find a group in my area that does periodic GTGs and some of those are being brought to the next one as well as getting a generous offer from another HTS member to come to his home to hear his set-up. For the rest, I will probably pick 1-2 to demo in home and ship back.

I am hoping to get out tomorrow to listen to the CM709 and GoldenEar Triton II - fingers crossed! :bigsmile:
 

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First off Robert - welcome to HTS!! :wave: I found this forum about 4 months ago, and it is my new favorite home. :D

Thanks for the suggestions for speakers - I will plan on looking at them in the next couple days to see if I can add them to my list. I have been doing my best to avoid the big box store for listening to a speaker - just so much traffic and whatnot. I have yet to try the Magnolia in the Best Buy about an hour away to see if it is set-up any better - might have to give that a looksy. Fortunately for me, I am located within reasonable driving distance of a few different smaller shops as well.

As far as the ID speakers, I was able to find a group in my area that does periodic GTGs and some of those are being brought to the next one as well as getting a generous offer from another HTS member to come to his home to hear his set-up. For the rest, I will probably pick 1-2 to demo in home and ship back.

I am hoping to get out tomorrow to listen to the CM709 and GoldenEar Triton II - fingers crossed! :bigsmile:
Joe,
Thanks for the welcome. I noticed the SE Wisconsin GTG thread on AVSforum. Wish I could attend, however, way too far for me. I am very interested in your reviews/feedback from the GTG and will follow along.
Also looking forward to your review of the GE Triton 2. I demoed the Triton 2 at an audio shop in my area. Went in with high exepectations due to all the reviews I read. Walked away somewhat disappointed, however, in fairness I was not assertive in controlling the environment, such as positioning the bass knob/level and moving the speakers off of the front wall. I will give the GE Triton 2 a second listen with thoughts about the listening environment.
 

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Discussion Starter #70 (Edited)
Just wanted to post initial thoughts on the B-Stock EmpTek Towers:

Here are a couple pictures of the boxes:

Speaker one
Speaker two

As you can see, it looks like both were ripped by a forklift. No damage to the speakers though.

Here is boxes removed. I was a little worried about them when I saw the packaging did not surround the speaker - fortunately, no damage. :T

Speaker one
Speaker two

The first speaker - the first picture is a "swirly" on top of the speaker. The next two are right next to cover. They look much worse than they really are as the camera really lit them up.

blemish 1
blemish 2
blemish 3

The second speaker just had the swirly on the top.

blemish 1

And, it's current resting place!

Home!

Here are a few pics with the grille off.

Whole speaker
Upper Half
Lower half

As far as the sound, I am currently building my HT room so I have not got much time on them yet. However, I have noticed that it handles bass / mids pretty well (I played a Blue Man group track) - crisp, clear and a bit of slam which actually somewhat surprised me TBH. :D I promised the family we would watch a movie tonight so I will give more impressions soon.

Snowing here today so no babysitter service available (aka Grandma :bigsmile:) so I won't be getting to listen to the CM709 or Tritons today. So all is not lost, I am still going to go there and check out the Oppo players! :T
 

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Discussion Starter #71
In reading on a different forum, I came across a post from David Fabrikant at Ascend Acoustics explaining how a ribbon tweeter works. I found it very informative so I thought I would post it here:

A true ribbon tweeter consists of (3) major components. The diaphragm (aluminum with the RAAL’s) the magnets (neodymium) and the transformer.

A true ribbon tweeter is designed such that a very thin conductive material is suspended between extremely powerful magnets. A current is applied directly to the diaphragm itself, thus reacting with the strong magnetic field generated by the magnets resulting in the diaphragm itself moving forward and back generating sound waves.

Unlike a dome or planar magnetic tweeter, a true ribbon does not have a voice coil – thus eliminating a very large amount of moving mass which accounts for the incredible transient accuracy which is clearly audible. Sounds simple, right? The lack of a voice coil creates a problem however....

Since voltage is applied directly across the diaphragm itself (the “ribbon”) and since the ribbon is highly conductive (extremely low resistance), your amplifier is going to see a load that may be as low as 1/10th of an ohm and it is either going to enter protection mode or fail almost instantly. To solve the problem, an impedance matching transformer must be used to keep the amplifier output power (wattage) the same while converting current delivery and, subsequently, voltage to usable levels.

The transformer design in a true ribbon tweeter is critical to performance as all transformers are subject to various losses, MUCH more so than capacitors, resistors and inductors. Keep in mind that the signal being sent to the ribbon is first traveling through the transformer and being “transformed”…

I won’t get into complex transformer design but a transformer consists of a core (typically metal) with one set of windings on one side of the core (primary) and another set of windings on the other (secondary). Current flows through the primary windings, creating a magnetic field in the core. This magnetic field then releases into the secondary windings creating a current which is directly proportional to the ratio of the # of windings in the secondary coil compared to the primary, and the process continues generating a "transformed" current flow.

The transformer core material has a significant influence on the performance of the transformer as it is continually subject to magnetic polarization. Ferrite cores are typical and are of very high quality, however, Amorphous metal cores are more efficient and can magnetize and then demagnetize faster and with less losses compared to ferrite cores.

Evidence of this will not show up on frequency domain measurements but are indeed evident in time domain measurements.

I have taken comparative measurements between the AM core units and the ferrite core units and the differences are noticeable. As far as actually hearing a difference between the two, there were times when I thought I heard subtle differences in micro-dynamics and yet other times I could not tell them apart. However, these are with my ears and we all detect sounds differently.

That said, it is in my professional opinion that if going with a RAAL ribbon, the AM core option is much more important to overall performance than choosing exotic crossover capacitors, silver solder, magic stones and various other “audiophile” tweaks. Performance differences are measurable; therefore they can certainly be audible and AM core transformers are the choice when designing a high performance transformer (less losses.) Since many of you are already considering what is, perhaps, the best ribbon tweeter available, it certainly makes sense to go with the higher performance transformer option.

If interested, a simple Google search on Amorphous metal or even Amorphous core transformers will provide more detailed information.
 

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Discussion Starter #73
I am really looking forward to that as well Brandon - it is such a great opportunity to meet people as well as being able to listen to so many great speaker choices. Being able to potentially meet Dennis and Jim are icing on the cake! :T

I just need to make sure I get myself down to University Audio to listen to the other two speakers so I have an more of an inkling of what I really want from a speaker. :bigsmile:
 

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I picked up a pair of GoldenEar II's. After the dealer moved them around for me, let me play with the bass and with my music I bought them, of course the speakers had about 150hours on them. So far so good.
 

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I picked up a pair of GoldenEar II's. After the dealer moved them around for me, let me play with the bass and with my music I bought them, of course the speakers had about 150hours on them. So far so good.
pxj, did you also get the Supersat 50c for the center and the Supersats for surrounds? if yes, let us know your impressions of how the Goldenear performs with movies. My concern is the Center speaker and dialogue.
 

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Discussion Starter #78
I picked up a pair of GoldenEar II's. After the dealer moved them around for me, let me play with the bass and with my music I bought them, of course the speakers had about 150hours on them. So far so good.
Definitely would love to hear more of your impressions!

ALMFamily, I'd like to share my favorite article about RAAL.

http://www.6moons.com/industryfeatures/roadtourserbia/raal.html
Thanks for the link - what a great read! Those Eternitys look simply AMAZING. :rubeyes:
 

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Discussion Starter #79
Just an update - been going gung-ho on the HT room so I have not done any new research in the last couple weeks. Hopefully, I will get a chance to look at the 3 speakers mentioned in a previous post and get to UA in the next few days and keep the journey alive! :T
 

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Discussion Starter #80
ALMFamily,
I'm reading this thread with a lot of interest. I'm in a similar situation as I beginning to plan for my next Home Theater.
I'm planning for a 5.1 system and have approximately the same budget as you, although I will need to upgrade my subwoofer.
My usage of the system is similar to you with a little less music (95% movies, sports, TV and 5% for music)
I'm also operating under the assumption that a great speaker for music will be great for movies.
I know you can't demo all speakers, however, a few brands/names that I did not see on your list and would enjoy to see your opinions are:
- Aperion Verus Towers (ID Retailer)
- JTR Speakers (either Triple 8s or Triple 12s) - Getting rave reviews across forums for playing with movies
- Def. Tech. Mythos ST(S)s and/or BiPolar Speakers (BP8080ST) - Typically easy to demo at box stores such as Best Buy

One question, how to you plan to incorporate the ID brands into your journey (Salk, Ascend, Philharmonic)? Do you plan to arrange trial periods in your home for demo and then ship back the speakers?

I took the course of running out and demoing speakers without much thought to how to compare. I really look forward to your reviews and will follow along. Thanks for what you're doing.
Regards,
Robert
Robert,

My apologies for not getting to this sooner. Thanks again for your speaker suggestions! As far as the 3 speakers you mentioned:

Aperion Verus - I have several ID brands on my list already and with my ability to attend the GTG in April, I feel that I will be able to get a large sampling of ID speakers there. Also, I am pretty certain that the SVS MTS-02 speakers will be one that I want to audition as I have heard nothing but glowing praise. Long Story short - I can probably only accomodate a few ID brands and probably have that many or more already. :bigsmile:

JTR Speakers - As with the Aperion, these appear to be ID. Also, (and correct me if I am wrong) it appears that these speakers are as sensitive or more sensitive than Klipsch speakers are. I did have the opportunity to get a short listen to the RF-62s and just felt - for lack of a better choice of words - there was too much treble for my tastes. If my understanding is correct, a higher sensitivity speaker is not only easier to drive, they tend to have a higher treble (bright?) sound. I figure if the Klipsch did not appeal, these probably would not either.

Def Tech Mythos - this is the one I want to get out to see and get a quick listen to so I can make a decision whether or not to spend more time with it - I just have not made it to the Magnolia location yet.

I need to update my speaker list as the GTG has a couple speakers I have not included - I will get that update done and re-post the revised list in the next couple days.

Cheers!
 
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