Acoustic Zen, Reference 3A and ATC


Which ones of the above mentioned produce a sound with faithfull tonality? I read in a review of the Reference 3a mm de Capo that "tonality is spot on", how the other two companies compare with Reference 3a in this regard?

And secondly, again considering all the three companies: Are they harsh or easy on ears? How easy? I have in mind long listening sessions.
I had ref 3a decapo be, now have atc scm7 v3.
Id say decapo image better, but tonally I prefer scm7. the decapo had some forwardness and something I found bright in the treble/upper mid
murphythecat, the v3 version of ATC scm7 that you own, is this the current version or one of the previous?

Anybody else who heard two or all of the three companie’s speakers?
I personally find the decapos to be tonally faithful based on my 3 year experience with this design, YMMV. You have to listen to speakers in a given system to gain any salt as to their intrinsic value to YOU. The DECAPOS are in my extensive experience quite special. In that I am very confident, I really love this design. Listen if you can, particularly with tubes. While not perfect, they are fundamentally just RIGHT.

Not compared myself. ATC are neutral and accurate in tone. In practice this translates as more forward midrange and less low end than most designs targeting home use (which tend to be more colourful in a way that is popular - stronger treble and bass)

I have no trouble listening to my Di Capo i's for hours and hours  , with tubes .

I have always said ... they will let you hear what your other equipment sounds like .

Good luck .

I owned the de Capo BE's and now own AZ Adagios. They both do best what they do best. I would say the de Capo's are a bit more forward while the Adagios resolve better.

Either way you're going to listen to music for hours. The only reason why I moved to the Adagios ( a lateral move, really) is because we moved to a place where I could finally have a listening room that could fit floorstanders.
Another thing,
Ref 3A’s loudspeakers proclaim they are all phase coherent (basically due to a non existent crossover), so as are Acoustic Zens due to an implementation of Linkwitz - Riley type of crossover. I uderstood this well?
What about ATCs active loudspeakers with the active crossovers, can the active crossovers be equally as effective? I find this phase coherency thing important.
I was told by ATC people that for the active versions phase is adjusted
Many claim to be "phase correct" but all they really do is have all drivers in the same polarity.  This does not guarantee the speaker to be time and phase correct if fact they rarely are.  The only way to know is to look for the triangular step response in the Stereophile measurements.
 Best JohnnyR
 Audio Connection
I have adagios and all my cables except intergrated to outboard power are acoustic zen . I can listen for hrs ,there very nuetral . When setup properly they sing . Mr. lee is great . They really dont need subs but i do run them 
In terms truth of tonality and overall music reproduction ATC is among the absolute best. It is a true reference if you want to hear the tone and timbre of an instrument or voices. The active version is in fact spectacular. I cannot see any reason why anyone buys a passive ATC because in its active avatar it sounds far superior to any passive ATC + amp combo.

Acoustic Zen is among the most colored speaker of the three, so take your pick.
I really like my zens ,to each his own.
What this person said ^^^^^^^

Just went from adagios to a pair of atc 11's...what took me so long...mainly room constraints were the main catalyst for change...

Really like what im hearing though...

Acoustic Zen would be my pick. I also feel the 3a's are a little forward sounding. I am not a fan of any of the ATC speakers as they use the cabinet to act as part of the sound. I personally do not want my box to add its own colorations to the music.
I don't think any of these speakers are particularly colored in the midrange and all are great in their own way.  But there will be differences in how they present the mids and the overall sonic picture.  If you're into soundstaging and, in particular, 3D imaging (think more of a "you are there" presentation) I'd lean toward Ref 3a.  If midrange dynamics and impact are more important to you (think "they are here" presentation) I've not heard better than ATC.  A major consideration is what equipment you'll be driving the speakers with, which will also be a main contributor to having listener fatigue or not.  ATCs generally need more power to open up and sound their best where Ref 3as present a relatively easier load and require less power.  I haven't heard the AZs so can't comment, but I'd guess they're somewhere between the two.  Others I'd consider are Joseph Audio, Vandersteen, and ProAc.  All great speakers.  Hope this helps and best of luck. 

Soix speaks the truth...amp/power is a must with running the modwright kwi 200...still have to give em the juice...also room consideration...
+1 Soix
I'll stick to adagios, untill cresendos myself. I run hybrid power 
Fritz speakers are worth a look too
Fritz contacted me he is close to me . He uses very high end drivers etc . And he offered to drive up and run a set here . I dont think you could go wrong there either. I wanted  floorstanders .
Im going up the rung... atc scm 19 ordered tommorow...its as close to floor stand i can take in my small room...hope that would be nice...good luck