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hi all. and good day. Well i am late to the party but this would be fun. IMO: reference material would be 1) on bluray: LED ZEPPLIN: The Song Remains the Same. 2) 2010 OPENING NIGHT CONCERT AT WALT DISNEY CONCERT HALL.. with GUSTOV DUDAMEL & JUAN DIEGO FLOREZ. Even though there IS a universe of unbelievable artist out there, but these 2 pics i can say WILL leave you with a smile and feel good, jam and rock out music. But i think putting electrostatic or what ever tech they are against traditional cone, is a bit off. You should break in the panels then maybe or compare the 2 and the winner goes against the cone winner....but thats me. I would love to have this job; i wish i could understand math and engineer and build my own speaker .....winner......Paradigm....maybe :) but i guess over all the winner WILL put a smile on your face no matter what your playing through them.
 

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Hmm, this is very interesting for me. I am once again getting an itch to upgrade my speakers. I have a weird mix of towers (mains & sides), surrounds and center, but they (especially the now very old towers and center) keep chugging along. I also have a pair of Epik Empires for subs, although one is offline (I need to find a suitable replacement amp). They do a yeoman's job for surround material, especially movies, but I think a really nice pair for 2-ch material is something I need to invest in.

So this will be monitored with great interest on my part.

shinksma
 

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Thanks once again for providing this great forum with exciting insight into the various speakers that are being auditioned here. Great way for us to get details on the various speakers all in one place for easy read and research. Keep up the good work! :)
 

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:clap:Very interesting and exciting event. Although I am not in the market at present, I am looking forward to the results. I expect all brands should do well as they are truly great speakers, with each to offer something over the other.:unbelievable:May be I can use the results for my future setup!

A DIY versus Manuf. evaluation would be incredible and would most likely let those of us building DIY speakers if there truly is fruit to be had of our labor. Although I can't afford a pair of $2500 speakers, this will be an interesting read. I enjoy reading listening impressions over interpreting graphs.

I too think this should be a blind folded evaluation for the listeners so that it erases bias, preconceived notions and any other irregularities that could skew the comparisons. Dedicate someone to place and wire up the speakers. Blind fold the listeners before entering the room and in no way let them know which speakers they will be listening to (making sure they are blind folded before seeing which speakers AREN'T in the room!). After they've heard the test material, as soon as they leave the room they write down their impressions WITHOUT TALKING TO EACH OTHER. Only after they write down their opinions can they share their thoughts. I know this would require more time and strict "rules" but would offer up the most "accurate" way to evaluate the speakers without influences.

Looking forward to reading more!
Couldn't agree with this any more! May be in future comparisons, a DIY speaker entry be made also.:nerd: As DIY is supposedly substantial savings, cost range for the DIY could be about 30 -40% of the other speakers. To invite DIY, for this comparisons, you could ask all DIY makers to submit REW results and then choose one out of all - possibly by popular vote and REW results. (I do not have a DIY speaker build:bigsmile:).
 

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This looks like a great line up of speakers it will be really interesting to hear the results. The extra "surprises" are very tantalizing too! I can't even imagine what a $20,000 setup would sound like? I'm not sure my ears can resolve that well! Anyway, it looks great!
 

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Great idea!
Love the idea of a quasi shoot out and the brands mentioned are some I've been curious to hear about. The only brand I've actually heard myself were the Martin Logans, and that was some time ago. My current L&R speakers were in that price range when I bought them 10 years ago(Linn 5140's), so I'm curious how much more you can get for your $$ these days.

Question. Have you considered having an independent person/party set up each speaker pair prior to the official audition? And is the WAF (Wife acceptance factor) going to be addressed? Its always a battle to get the household CEO to agree to speakers being too far out into the room for the sake of sound quality. :ponder:
 

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Although I've never had speakers of this quality/price, I'm interested to see the results. I am fond of Paradigm, so I'm hoping they are near the top! I'll be keeping my eye on this thread! :)
 

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Well, I didn't do so well in the first round, so let's see if I can make up for it here. There are some really nice speakers in this challenge which makes it hard to choose. I am a fan of Paradigm, and although I haven't heard the Studios, they are a staple of quality systems. I also have a lot of respect for Dynaudio, who I think make some incredible speakers. But I'm going to go out on a limb here and vote for the Emerald Physics CS2P. I just have a good feeling about them... A little unconventional, and they look great on paper. Can't wait to see the results, and what else comes up in this thread!
 

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Great idea!
Love the idea of a quasi shoot out and the brands mentioned are some I've been curious to hear about. The only brand I've actually heard myself were the Martin Logans, and that was some time ago. My current L&R speakers were in that price range when I bought them 10 years ago(Linn 5140's), so I'm curious how much more you can get for your $$ these days.

Question. Have you considered having an independent person/party set up each speaker pair prior to the official audition? And is the WAF (Wife acceptance factor) going to be addressed? Its always a battle to get the household CEO to agree to speakers being too far out into the room for the sake of sound quality. :ponder:
Speaking of WAF, I showed the picture of the ML's to my wife from the web and she said they were stunning and wouldn't mind a pair in our living room, than I showed her the price and she didn't even flinch. I can't wait to see how they do in the shoot out. I have the best wife in the world!
 

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This looks like a great event! Speakers have always been the bane of my existence (not only as a lover of audio, but as a bass player and a recording engineer), so it's great to see events like this happen.

I'd love to check out speakers of this caliber for my home or home studio (I'm currently using ProAc Studio 100s driven by a McIntosh MC2105 in my studio and a pair of Avalon NPIIs driven by MC30s in my living room), but before I did, I would want to spend a bunch of time and effort in getting the acoustics of my rooms improved. I went through a lot of different speakers in my home studio before doing minimal treatment and it was shocking how much difference some bass traps and first reflection control made. About a month ago, Airshow Mastering here in Boulder presented Sam Berkow of SIA Acoustics for a seminar in room design and it was quite an eye, or should I say, ear opener, especially the shape of the room (I came up in the studio world when live end/dead end was the rage. I was a skeptic but it wasn't until now that I've heard the reasons why it didn't work out so well.). I've always enjoyed hearing music in David Glasser's room at Airshow and while I've always attributed a lot of it to his speakers (Dunlavy with Pass Lab amps (I think those are the amps he uses)), but now it's clear that the room/speaker synergy is where the magic really happens. It looks like the room for this test is great! Have fun, guys! I'm looking forward to the results.
 

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It sounds like it will be an excellent event. I also wish it would be possible to attend, by not this time. I am still amazed at the continuing evolution going on in the speaker industry, not to push aside the lesser known designers including some very talented homebrew folks.
Audio electronics keeps improving, but mostly in the areas of interface and compatibility with other devices and remote and other wireless features.
But speakers are in a class of their own. The improvements you can really hear keep coming. It is more than just an art and design effort, it is truly a craft in a way I think that other audio components can not equal.
 

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Speaking of WAF, I showed the picture of the ML's to my wife from the web and she said they were stunning and wouldn't mind a pair in our living room, than I showed her the price and she didn't even flinch. I can't wait to see how they do in the shoot out. I have the best wife in the world!
You are a lucky man indeed!!
 

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Looking forward to this! These are all great speakers in this evaluation.
Personally, I love the Maggie's but not sure they will be able to compete in the low frequencies. My money is on the Martin Logan's, but I think it's going to be very close.
-Great job guys. Have fun with the test!
 

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I am interested in OB speakers currently. I look forward to your evaluation of the Emerald Physics CS2P in your audition series. If this were not such a busy time of year, I would try and drive up there to take a listen myself. There is a lot of thought currently about an OB midrange/tweeter run by a class A amp, and having a DSP/crossover system for a plate amp running the bass drivers. Better bass than can be had with the lower wattage amp, and elimination of "box" effects on the critical midrange/tweeter section.

However, the OB systems need more room to run in than I have in my man cave. These speakers are only 18 inches wide though, much better than 24-36 like many of them.

Please be sure to detail the room placement for these speakers when you comment on them.
 

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My wife is real good about gear too.
A long time ago she lobbied to get rid of my old 70's era speakers with something small and pretty so I brought home a Bose Acoustimass system that cost about $1200 and hooked it up.
After just a few minutes of listening she said she didn't want to spend money and have worse sound and asked if it could be taken back.
I packed it up and returned it.
About three years ago the old speakers needed to be replaced and when I wanted a RF-83 system she didn't bat an eye.
I know many of my friends have to fight for every inch of TV and a real sound system is out of the question.
After I narrow gear down to two or three choices she wants her say on the final decision but at that point it's a can't lose for me.
 

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Great wife indeed!
My wife is very similar. I've been hooked on audio/video for decades, and back before we got married I was in the market for new speakers in the 2000-2500 range (similar to this evaluation). She started coming with me during my listening tests and she caught the bug. She was amazed at the differences in sound and detail that came from different speakers. After about 18 months, I narrowed my choices down to 2 models (Snells and Amrita's) and she liked them both too. In the end, I bought the Snell's and SHE bought the Amrita's for her place! LOL
Now that we are married, she has helped me with all of my upgrades (she has a good ear!). When I upgraded from the Snell's to my current speakers (PBN Montana EPS's), she went with me to all my listening tests. Again, I narrowed it down to 2 speakers (B&W's were the others) and she liked the Montana's a little better, especially when we added a sub into the mix. I agreed and they came home with us.
Now we have our home theater headed up by the Montana's, but she has her own listening room with some of my old electronics running her Amrita Summit's (yep, she wouldn't part with them even after we got married!). She say's "the girls" need a getaway room for wine and music while the guys are watching TV in the main room.
Who am I to argue with that?:D
 

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Sorry Sonnie I didn't make myself clear on that earlier. I meant to ask which of the speakers in the shoot out each reviewer had previous experience with, not all the speakers you had heard in general.
Ahh... well... of course I have heard quite a few MartinLogans... and I have heard the SVS Ultra's twice at shows. I have not heard any of these other exact models anywhere. I have heard lower end or higher end models on some of them. Never heard Dynaudio or Paradigm.


Wow sounds like a great event, I would love to attend but it's a little out of my area. Any events planned for the north east? Larry
Not sure yet if we will have these in other locations, although we generally have to limit it to staff, as the complexity of the setup and listening is rather time consuming as it is. Having others there listening would cause us not to get finished.


Question. Have you considered having an independent person/party set up each speaker pair prior to the official audition? And is the WAF (Wife acceptance factor) going to be addressed? Its always a battle to get the household CEO to agree to speakers being too far out into the room for the sake of sound quality. :ponder:
We only setup the speakers when we get ready to audition them. The other speakers are outside the room, so it would not be feasible to have someone come in and set them up. Plus, we have pretty good ears available for setting them up, which basically consist of plugging in the speaker cables and getting them placed.

WAF is something each "husband" has to address and judge for himself, based on his particular "wife". It would be difficult for us to know all of your wives and what they might like or dislike.

As far as moving them out into the room... does your wife sit and listen with you, or is she somewhere else? Personally, if I could not listen to the speakers in their best placement, I would not buy them, as you have lost the benefit of buying them if you can't listen in the proper location. I may be that you find the best placement, mark it (or record the measurements from a source point) and move them to that placement when listening. Move them back when finished. You really need the proper setup and ability to move the speakers around if you plan to do any serious listening. If you are merely using speakers for background music, you could just pick up some really inexpensive speakers for that... or something you know won't upset your wife.
 

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This event looks awesome. If there is one in Texas I will bring Philharmonic 2s and an assortment of amps. I am entering my DIY phase of audio...not sure if this will be the pinnacle of my journey or just make me realize why beautiful finishes cost more :)

For the event consider toe in, distance, and ensure all the connections are solid. I measured speakers with major toe in changes and it was different enough to be seen on calibrated graphs.

Have fun!
 

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This sure sounds like a lot of fun, I wish I was in the area and had an invite!

Happy to see the Emerald Physics in the line up, haven't heard this version but did have an older pair which were great. It is a very nice line-up of speakers so it will be interesting to see how they all stack up.

I really want to hear about the $20K 2-channel system and the special guest with a unique 5.0 system.....talked about getting my interest.

You guys are really doing great work :yes:
 

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I wish I could attend some of these get togethers. To be able to hang out with a bunch of other guys interested in the same stuff, play around with some great gear, and audition some really nice speakers... Sounds like a really great way to spend a day or two.
 
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