My choice would definitely be VMPS RM/X..One 12" low bass woofer, one 10" mid-bass woofer, 12" passive radiator,six 20 cm neo ribbons and a new very efficient tweeter..solid build quality..170 kg each..bass down to 20 hz..to die for midrange and highs..the looks are excellent..all for $10 000 ..what else can one dream more??Don't hesitate even one second..order your RM/X soon..:)
check these photos..
Definitly , MG20.1 PRODUCT OF THE YEAR 2002 By Absolute Sound. at $12,000 . With the size of your room , you will have great fun to position them at the proper place and enjoy the exceptional quality of these speakers.
Good buy !
see : http://www.magnepan.com/ (Speaker Galery)
Why don't you spend an additional $500 and have an extended week-end in a big city. This way you can audition -almost- all of your choices. You can take your own favorite music, and, if lucky, you may get a set-up close to yours. Suggesting brand X or Y to you is bad advice. After all, as you mention, you would be stuck with these for a long time. After all, $15k is a lot of money.
I might add to your list the Areials 20's, Innersound Eros with sub-woofer, Snell 25's (I think that may be the number), Von Schricker V-7's.......(I heard from people the V-6's are knockouts)!
If you really are going to spend $15,000 then the price of getting to a large city where you can hear many of these speakers is mandatory. Some dealers may even cover some of your expense if you do buy from them. DO NOT spend this much money based on someones opinion.
sell your amps and buy a pair of ATC active 50's. for around 15k, you get the best midrange driver in the world, a ludicrously accurate bass driver, their new tweeter and six power amps. chances are that many of your cd's were mastered using them.
I would echo the opinion about going to somewhere where you can audition things but I am in the same scenario as you and the fact is that auditioning outside of your home will only give you some idea about what is up. Still it is worthwhile if you can manage. Going to the stereophile show might also be the way to go except that from what I understand the rooms are very difficult to work with. For what its worth our musical tastes do differ but room size is similar. I went with the piega c8ltd and am extremely happy. For more bass the c10ltd would definitely be worth a listen. If you buy carefully you should get an adequate discount such that you don't expose yourself to huge losses if you decided to change given that you will not be in the city you are buying. If you have any questions drop a note.
I couldn't agree more with the folks telling you to take a trip. The sum of money would be trivial compared to what you're about to invest in speakers, and as said above, some dealers will help cover your travel costs. Just looking at the wide array of opinions offered here should tell you what a personal decision this is, planars, boxes, actives, etc! Make an informed choice with your ears!
How about a trip to New Orleans? We have several dealers here carrying such brands as JM Labs, Wilson Audio, and Vandersteen. I'm also a dealer for the JC-1's, and could give you an audition of Sound Lab full-range electrostats driven by JC-1's. I'd offer you a free place to stay regardless of where you shop, and if you ended up purchasing Sound Labs (I know they're not on your list, but hey a dealer can dream, can't he??), then I'll re-imburse your airfare. I'll offer you transporation as well, and would be more than happy to take you to the other shops I mentioned (there are several other fine brands carried here that aren't on your list).
Worst-case scenario would be your trip to New Orleans doesn't result in your discovering the ideal speaker, but at least you narrow down your list while enjoying some great food and live music without having a killer hotel bill, and you meet a few fellow crazies along the way.
Seriously, check out ticket prices at Travelocity.com or wherever. Shoot me an e-mail for details of my accomodations and such.
And whether or not New Orleans makes sense to you as a place to visit (there are bigger, better-stocked cities), I'd suggest investing a portion of your budget into making the necessary pilgrimages. Say you travel a couple of weekends and spend a grand doing so. My argument would be that fourteen grand well spent will probably take you farther than fifteen grand spent on an educated guess.
Best of luck to you on your quest, wherever it might lead you!
Infinity MTS Prelude with the RABOS Subs, look no more awesome set up, you can buy new for 10K look at Stereophile Mag Class AA up with the Big Boys $80,000 +++. You can buy
used for $5500,$6500 on this site.
I own them, I auditon the Wilsons ,Revels , B&W. My brother also, only 3 months ago was looking at the Talons K X and the Eggelston, bought the Infinity's on site, New. They are small in size , the subs are self powered. easy to set up big room ,small room whatever. I would recommend to get it down to 3 of your favorites and work your way to the ones that sounds best to you. Don't go by reviews or what poeple say, ( does help but your ears is what matters) you must listen to them on your home stereo at home, that's tought but the only way.
I think Duke's suggestion of listening to the Sound Lab
M1s or maybe the new R3s with some subwoofers are what you are looking for. Forget Kharmas or Avalons because of your listening tastes. The JC-1s will probably drive any speaker you choose. And the Pass Labs pre-amp is one of a handful of ss preamps that are musical. Once you decide on a speaker, the next stop is the cd playback system. The Cary
is very good but not in the same league as your other components. Good luck!
Take a look at Shahinian Diapason (www.shahinianacoustics.com), which sell for 12,000 $. I have just listened to a few of the speakers you mentioned (B&W, JM Lab), but I still like the Shahinian better. Fellow Audiogoner Holzhauer, who has listened to a lot of expensive speakers recently, might be able to give you afew hints as well.
Let's see, how many replies and how many suggestions so far? Have you gotten any closer to a decision? I doubt it--I wouldn't have. June 5-8th is the HE 2003 show. It's designed for consumers. True the show venues are not the greatest set-ups (understatement), but you can at least hear a large variety of equipment in one place in a couple of days. Airfare to San Fran is probably less than $400 round trip from almost anywhere in the country. Very nice accomodations are available for less than $125 a night, and of course you can find much much cheaper places. If I was about to spend $15k on speakers I would have to hear them. Every speaker has it's strengths and weaknesses--particularly considering your tastes in music. The Soundlabs are wonderful on vocals, but I don't think they are going to do much for your heavy metal days. You can find out more about the show here.
look for used pair of Genesis 201's or 200's no way you can do better at this price level. Genesis is once again producing the 201 system so parts are available.
These are truly world class speakers. IMO
I LOVE my Verity Audio Parsifal Encores. Solid, ethereal, compact, and GREAT in the nearfield, unlike most 3-ways.
Avalon Eidolon, Piega 10, and check out the ad for Peak Consult Grande Signature...
Innersound Eros, and save yourself $7K. Or, include $2k for a sub-woofer and still save $5.5k, which will pay for more than half a pair of Wolcott's or Manley Neo-Classic amps.
I also agree with Mejames about Genesis 201..Genesis is just another world..actually there is a used pair of Genesis 201 right now on audiogon for sale..
Time for a vacation. While it is great to daydream with all these flawless speakers, your listening tastes will determine which of these YOU like. You can arrange to take your amp cables and preamp to some great stores and test everything out. Now if you don't want to pay retail but buy used, it is much more difficult. I would never buy a speaker unheard though.
Doesn't Duke sell ATC? 2nd Lazarus28 but active 100's are $15,000. The 50's are less.
JM Labs Utopia Alto Be hands down.The new berrillium tweeter is the best made and sounding in the world.And even the Utopia Micro Be is rated as one of the best monitors period.And furthermore,there is no describing the Grand Utpoia in human terms(o.k. I'm getting ahead of myself)