Try a pair of Barefoot MM27 - around 8K new. Ultra modern looking. Sell your power amp.
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Shelby+Kroll Nano Monitors with 2 Woffer Monitors. A great sounding sleek modern design, that can be custom colored to match your decore. I sold my Audio Note and Lowther system for this set up. You WILL be blown away by the sound. Everything in the website is true, no marketing BS. Check S+K out you'll be glad you did, I was. :-)
The S&K are wonderful but a rather different beast to the ATC 100 which you alluded to. A mere lamb versus a lion perhaps. Given your new larger room size and existing tastes I am not sure S&K would be at all suitable. (S&K nano's max peak output is a mere 104 db SPL and therefore a big step down from your existing SCM 20's which play continuously at close to 108 db SPL in your old small room)
Anyway you may have to wade through everyone's favorite speaker under 6 K listed here without respect to your "taste" or preferences.
I'd suggest to check out used bigger PMC speakers also...kind of an industrial look (with the Volts) but certainly a more modern appearance than ATC.
Stan: the kit does look interesting, and quite affordable. However, the last time I solder anything, I nearly destroy the entire speaker. Quite an experience!
Rodge, I will look into those monitors. They do look kind of cool, almost like a mini Kharma speaker.
Shardone: those barebones were actually on my list before I got my atc. I am wondering if their drivers are as robust as Atc for that price. However, I do have the audiophile curse, I love the sight of two big monoblocks!
As for the PMC, they are like a slightly warmer ATC, which is great. They look similiar, and the one that looks "industrial" are $$$
Have you heard the Revel Salon version 1? That is one great looking speaker, especially in silver.
Kinn, I suggest you search the recent thread, here.. "Are audiophile speakers turn on for single women". Choose for YOU without the WAF as a factor. Speakers may be the perfect Litmus Test when looking for a prospective wife. Me: ..let's see.... JBL 4550's or wife, 4550's...wife, 4550's...wife.... Tough choice
It is for me, and girls has nothing to do with it. If a girl doesn't like it, it just allows me to meet more countless amount of wonderful women out there.
I'm am really picky (im a hairstylist, so maybe that has something to do with it) about aesthetic of a living space, especially since it's my own place. I like my space to look simple and open, and a super size box in the middle of the room does not exactly say that. Therefore I want something sleeker, so even if it is in the middle the room, it's acts as a piece of furniture.
Now for the speakers,
Proac's are good, but they lack electrostatic-like sound of the ATC until you hit their flagship models. I havent heard the D38 yet though. Vienna acoustic has too much of its house sound.
I was thinking about Martin Logan summitx, which I haven't heard, but I do like the prodigy. However the age and vulnerblitiy of the panel and the abuse of previous owner has me swaying away.
As for the PMC, I was thinking about buying them for fun, but I promise I won't buy anything til I near my closing date which isnt for another few months.
Any one has ATC, and demoed revel salon v1? Those been my dream speakers since I was in high school. I know they won't sound like ATC or even PMC, but I want to know if they are the same caliber. The exterior design of the speaker is one of the best Ive seen.
FYI, I know the revel is old, but my ATc is even older, made in 1993 I believe! So I'm not worry about have the latest thing in the market. A well design speaker will always hold it's age well against the newcomers.
Kinn, the revels would match your aesthetix goal and are pretty good speakers. I would not say the are the same as the active ATC's higher models. Another consideration would be the Wilson speakers, much closer to ATC in my experience in many ways. You could go with some silver Sophias or W/P (but not sure if you like the look, I do).
Of course if you want to stretch your budget you will get more into both performance and cosmetics. But your statement that they need to sound like ATC take a lot of contenders out, like MBL for example. They look like a piece of art to some, very industrial and interesting - many people may not even guess they are speakers.
As for Martin Logans. . . as long as you can still get the replacement panels from ML (which I would automatically do for any ML speaker that is 8 years old or more), I wouldn't worry about that too much. Just remember, anytime you buy an ML speaker and the seller doesn't have a receipt for new panels from the last few years, you really need to expect to replace them yourself (easy to do). Sure 8 year old MLs may still sound decent, but your mind will change once you put in new panels and run em for about 100 hours. You will realize the 8+ year old panels have lost their "magic".
Guys, thanks for the awesome advice!
Wilson audio design are awesome! Quite expensive too, I heard several of their models, but they all sound different every time i heard them. Even with the same model, but in different settings and electronics, they either sound real good or real bad. The sophia 1 & 2 are more in my price range. For the most part, from what i can remmeber, their bass slam is amazing, especially with classical music.
As for MBL, only heard them once, and only with "techno" music, no idea why the dealer put that as a demo disc for me. It was well known that the MBL are holograhic, but that disc did not show its strength. I losted interest thereafter as I was there to demo speakers under 1K (I was a freshman in college then). Gotta admit, they look sharp! I like them physically!
As for the revels, I heard it twice, once in Hong Kong and once at a dealer in MD. Both times they sounded as they were holding back, and viel, but both times they were driven with Mark Levinson. Yet everytime I heard things through Levinson gear, it always sound "polite". So I was wondering if revel will sound robust with more aggressive and meatier sounding gear. I'm just in love with the way it looks, and now i can afford it, it kills me. In addition i heard them in high school, long before my ears were even trained.
Stick with the ATCs. They may not be high on WAF levels but sound pretty incredible. The ATCs are the least colored speakers when compared to many exotic designs out there, and I believe it will be difficult to find another speaker that can surpass the level of performance from a well set-up SCM20s. ATC usually have a very loyal following as most owners strive to improve their systems with upgrades and tweaks rather than looking at other speaker lines.
Yes they have and sound great! The imaging is just so good with the S+K. No "head in vise" going on here. My wife noticed the imaging right off the bat. Her exact comments were "it sounds like he (Van Morrison) is in the room with us" and "those look really nice...maybe you should bring them up to the livingroom" (FAT CHANCE!) These comments came from her unsolicitated, and by the way that is the first time she has EVER had anything good to say about my system!
Very natural, well balanced with no phase anomolies that occur in box designs.
I don't want to hijack this thread so that is all for now. I will start a thread after I get my new DAC and will offer listening sessions to those who are interested.
Oh and my amp is an ATC SIA2-150.
Kinn, You may want to consider the SK for your main system. As noted they won't peel your face off, but they do play loud enough to seriously get the message across. Don't be fooled by the spec's, everthing Tim Kroll writes in his site is true! Take some time and read the whole website. Tim is a very personable guy and will talk to you at lenght, on the phone, about his products. I first found his speakers here on the Gon when I was looking for a sub to augment my Lowther Medallion 2's. I called Tim and was able to set up an audition at a customers house here in NJ. After the first couple of minute's I knew that I wanted them. I wanted to see how well and low the bass would go and put on Flight Of The Cosmic Hippo by Bela Fleck. Wow! we were amased at the depth and clarity of all the bass notes(yes the NOTES)that came through the woffer monitor. Very deep and well defined with Bela plucking away on the banjo as if he were standing in front of us. During the song as Victor Wootens bass gets lower and lower my host jumped out of his chair, ran to the sub as if it were going to blow up. He turned to me with a huge grin as if he had found the Holy Grail of subs. Again don't let the specs fool you. The sub put's out a full and well defined signal at 30hz, not just a few db in either direction. Tim offers a full refund money back gaurantee if you are not satisfied. Well worth checking them out.
My room is 15 x 27 x 8.25, and I use two Woffer Monitors to pressurize the room properly. The sound got better as I removed a lot of the the room treatments. This is due to the proper phase being delivered by the Nano Monitors. The ATC SIA-150 is an integrated amp and runs moderatly hot during a session. It was one of the amps that Tim Kroll recommended that I buy. It has great tonal balance and can really let the music flow without any colorations. I'm very happy with it.
Hope this helps,
I actually went ahead and ordered a pair of the Nano monitors based on conversations I had with Rodge and and another owner who all happen to live in N.J. incidentally And after speaking with Tim, who like Rodge states is a real straight shooter I felt confident enough to order a pair without listening and Tim gave me a great deal on the prototypes. Even if you only order the speakers without the woofer monitor, Tim will stil give you the package deal price at a later time. Rodge, my wife sounds just like yours, if I get any unsolicited coments like you did then I know I hit paydirt!
thank you rodge for the information. I will have to throughly research them. Is your speaker on the short wall, and how far are you from them. It would be great if you assist me with that information if you do not mind.
My room is 18w x 27d x 9h, speakers will be placed on short wall with about 5-6 feet away from their rear wall. As for me, I will be sitting on the opposite end, with my head about 3 to 4 feet away from the rear wall. This mean the Nanos would have to project a sound pretty far out into the room to maintain a solid midrange and tonality, in addition to providing an exceptionally stable soundstage. This is something that will be hard even for my ATC SCM20.
BUT, then again, i haven't even tried the ATC in the room yet. I won't know until the condo is complete, and i can not wait!
Kinn, The way that you will set up your system, in your new condo, would be a lot to ask of most speakers out there. Tim does offer a 30 day money back gaurantee, so that may be the way to go for you and the SK speakers. Try them and if the aren't suitable send them back. I listen with the speakers on the short wall 7' into the room and 4' from the side walls. My stands for now are a couple of old bar stools that are 24" high with Herbies Fat Dots as decouplers. I sit about 10' away with the speakers pointed right at me, as specified by Tim Kroll. Since the stands are so short I'm using my beach chair to listen in. When I get a new listening chair I will have Sound Anchor make me a custom pair, till then this is it. The subs are to the outside of each speaker and on the same plane.
I had to do a complete system change to accomidate the SK speakers. As noted I sold my horn system and all of my low power tube gear. The room is in a small state of flux at the moment, but I do get some quality listening in a couple of times a week. Funny thing happened the other night. Alison Krouse and Union Station Live was on and I had to get up out of the chair for a moment. When I did, the sound stage came up with me, I felt like Alison was full size right in front of me, unfortunatly the rest of the band was there with her. These speakers are kinda' spooky that way.
Exactly, after all that is actually what ATC do. They concentrate on the in house electronics and in house drivers but they outsource the cabinets to companies that specialize in wood working & cabinetry & veneer.
Example ATC EL 150SLA on the left ATC 100ASL and ATC SCM0.1-15 on the right (what a world of difference a custom cabinet can make)
I might move them into the room that is about 13 x 19, and keep the ATC SCM20. However, when the funds arrive, I decided to buy a pair of passive ATC SCM100 and hopefully find a good paint/wood workshop and get them painted piano black, red, or white.
Thanks for the great suggestion everyone. I really appreciate the help!