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£3,500 budget...what would you change?

Discussion in 'audio' started by Moppit, May 16, 2019.

  1. i.j.russell

    i.j.russell pfm Member

    The Khozmo remote pre looks very nice. I have a Khozmo attenuator in my DCB1 pre and it's extremely well made.

    As I stated above, I haven't done any comparisons on power supplies but I doubt if you will notice much difference.
  2. Moppit

    Moppit pfm Member

    Not really tried standmounts..always figured they looked poor value compared to floor standers? i.e. having to fork out extra for stands, less bass perhaps. I am open minded though so happy to understand if a stand mount of 3k would see off a 3k floor stander .ie better drive units in lieu of extra box and packaging...
  3. crimsondonkey

    crimsondonkey pfm Member

    Dealers whether good or bad cannot offer you the breadth of kit and set up that your fellow enthusiasts can in their homes.
  4. Timo_F

    Timo_F pfm Member

    I agree that the older 20.23 have a hot treble. When demo'ing I use Allegri's Miserere to establish whether a speaker might be fatiguing, and the 20.23 struggle with the soprano in this piece... I think PMC fixed this problem with the Twenty5 series. I used my Twenty5.23 with a Naim XS2. Also, the room matters a lot. When we demo'ed, the speaker worked much better in our home than the dealer's demo room.
    Last edited: May 16, 2019
    Moppit likes this.
  5. SteveG

    SteveG pfm Member

    I've only gone to a couple of folks houses to hear systems (folks from here as it happens, but a long time ago) but it was more for interest that to hear stuff I was interested in buying. I suspect I'd be on a hiding to nothing trying to find fellow enthusiasts locally that had stuff I wanted to hear demo'd and were willing to let me come along and listen. It'd also feel mega geeky!
  6. crimsondonkey

    crimsondonkey pfm Member

    I think the point is to listen as broadly as possible, and to stuff that isn't necessarily on your immediate short list, and especially things you've not previously considered or even heard of.
    Moppit likes this.
  7. foxwelljsly

    foxwelljsly Keep Music Vile

    I concur wholeheartedly with spending the cash on a better streaming service and loudspeakers. If it were I, I'd be looking at the large standmounts in the Spendor classic range or from Harbeth, although there are lots of other possibilities, these should be a great match with you quad power amps.

    If you must have remote control, I'd consider selling the chord and Tisbury and buying a DAC with remote control from someone like Benchmark - this would also provide a balanced connection with the QMP, FWIW.

    I generally just buy stuff to see what its like and sell it on if it doesn't make me happy. A shop demo of speakers is a pointless exercise, anyway.
  8. Timo_F

    Timo_F pfm Member

    Absolutely agree -- Naim wasn't on my shortlist, wasn't on my radar at all. But I was encouraged to have a listen, and I did . Loved it, bought it... Have a long list, rather than a short list... Well, have a short list for home demos... ;-)
  9. Hipper

    Hipper pfm Member

    I suggest before spending any money you try and get the best out of what you've got first.

    1. If you haven't already done so, try to find the best location for your speakers and listening chair. Getting this right can make a considerable difference to any system and may even help with your 'lack of detail'.

    2. Once you've done this consider room treatment - bass traps etc.. This will really make a major impact. Even if you spent the whole of your budget on this it would be worth it.

    3. Consider Digital Signal Processing (DSP) to finish off.

    If you cannot do 1 and 2 for whatever reason you could just use DSP or EQ. This could be in the form of software - if your machine can handle it - or a box like MiniDSP.
    Moppit likes this.
  10. Moppit

    Moppit pfm Member

    Just thought I would share an update, spent an hour or so with the very helpful Andy at Winchester hifi. Andy popped into the room I was in from time to time to just swap speakers over..no agenda other than making sure I heard something that was to my taste...

    Source was a rega cd transport, exposure XM7 pre/dac, XM9 monos..very impressive.

    First up..ALR Jordan classic 5 - £1500, punchy, forward, massive soundstage, bags of detail, too much excitement for me, slight metallic edge. Some would love this. Not me, fatiguing..last place..

    Proac DT8...£2000, very nice, lovely clear but smaller, focussed image, slightly recessed soundstage, better , smoother mids, impressive. Deeper bass. Voted no. 2

    Proac D20r £2885, even more recessed to my ears, ribbon tweeter very refined, perhaps too much? even deeper, better bass, more controlled, darker overall. Easy listen. Possibly joint 2nd. Hmmm.

    ALR jordan Note 5, excitement back up to 11, wow! Sadly i can hear the tweeters rather than the music. Beautiful looking speakers, shame as i could not live with them. Massive soundstage again, tons of detail. They did make me grin...too full on...yikes!

    Neat motive SX1.£2120 (really?)..ugly little wonky boxes. Did not want to like them...er.. voted No 1 by me..these just work. Smooth across the whole spectrum. Fab wide soundstage. Lovely sound. Want to hear them at home with my kit.its possible the others were just overpowering the room hence the great result here.

    Finally, Proac tablette 10, £1k great clarity but a little too bright and forward for my taste. More studio monitor, not enough low end. Andy suggested pop back to hear the DT2 and new DT2r in a couple of weeks

    A lovely, insightful afternoon..not the result I was expecting, learnt as much about my own personal preferences as the speakers themselves. Thanks Andy.. More research needed..

    There is a postscript to this update..whilst I was there a friend (with a seriously impressive system.(.Linn klimax, Wilson benesch ) asked if I could pick up some speaker cables he was home demoing ...goodness! One pair £3k, the others £2k.. of course I'm looking after them until he pops round tomorrow....yep,.... cables make a bl@@dy big difference. I'm gobsmacked yet sad...i will never spend this much on cables but they transform my current speakers...think I'll start looking at cheaper options..
    MattSPL likes this.
  11. Timo_F

    Timo_F pfm Member

    The SX1 are great speakers — not the most detailed speakers but very musical and not too bad looking I thought. Sadly they did not work in our lounge. They need quite a bit space, and the down-firing ports can cause trouble with suspended floor. We ended up with boomy bass — so, in my experience, home demo is critical with these speakers. The PMC Twenty5.23 are not fuzzy about placement, and offered the extra detail I was looking for — unfortunately at a price. I blew the budget... I hope the Neat work in your lounge — enjoy the home demo!! :)
    Last edited: May 18, 2019
  12. Timo_F

    Timo_F pfm Member

    P.S. What speaker cable do you use? My dealer recommended Chord Epic Twin for the Neat.
  13. Joco

    Joco pfm Member

    Great thread, no sniping or pushing of agendas, hope the OP gets sorted.
    Moppit likes this.
  14. Musicraft

    Musicraft Trade: Musicraft

    Have you considered Reference Model 2.2’s?
  15. Rick_F

    Rick_F pfm Member

    I agree speakers make the biggest change to a system so well worth looking at other speakers. As a means of improving your system more, could you sell the dac & pre amp and uuse the money for a dac with a built in pre as mentioned earlier? I happily use a Chord Hugo TT straight in to my power amps. If you should decide to go that route buy the dac first so you can match / tune your speakers to the type of sound you like. I've also found the better the speakers you have, the more obvious the changes are up stream.
  16. sls4321

    sls4321 pfm Member

    I would agree with SHL5+, noblest because I've has two pairs, the standard and now the 40th AE. The standard are still absolutely fine.

    I also had a pair of QMP before moving to Devialet. I had 909 stereo and 909 mono and frankly the QSP or Artera Power would be plenty enough. This would release cash to get a better streamer/DAC/pre-amp combination; apparently the Node 21 is fabulous for £500.
  17. Moppit

    Moppit pfm Member

    Interesting...i see that used TT's are a similar price to Hugo 2's ..has anyone done a comparison?
  18. Thetiminator

    Thetiminator Painfully virile

    Definitely put all your money into the speakers. They make the biggest difference by a million miles. I’d be looking at trading your current speakers and adding that to you 3.5k giving you c.4k. Then buy second hand, you’ll get something in the 8-10k Range new.
    My biggest hifi revelation was c.50k speakers being played by a Linn Classic one box thing bought off eBay for £150. Stunning.
  19. radamel

    radamel Music Fiend

    IME speakers also benefit greatly from being well driven.
    So my advice to the OP would be to consider always speakers+amp.

    Regarding standmounts vs floorstanders that would depend on one's room, priorities and taste. No right or wrong or max bang for buck either way in every situation.
  20. Woodface

    Woodface pfm Member

    I think speakers can make the biggest difference in both directions so source will always be important

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