Are Ohm-Walsh micros and 1000 series disrespected because of omni-directional design??
I never was a big fan of Omni-directional speakers because they are often disappointing. I don't need the sound in back of me or 2 foot to my right or left. However, I have seen many testimonials for Ohm -Walsh speaker on Audiogon, yet they are infrequently reviewed.
Therefore, are Ohm-Walsh speakers disrespected because of their Omni directional design??. I noticed two issues on their website: 1) how do your determine which micro or tall column will be compatible for the dimensions of your listening area, especially if your listening area is only part of a larger room. 2) A buyer can easily mistake the way they are priced. For example, the OW Talls (w-1000) are $ 1000 each, NOT $1000 FOR THE PAIR. So, that model is $2000 a pair, and there is lot of competition from conventional designed speaker, in that price category For example. the Golden Ear Technology. model 7, and the Magneplanar .07 both in the $1400-1500 price range and, some of the PSB towers, like the T-2 or T-3. or Monitor Audio recent series..
Would like some feedback about whether this Ohm-Wash design is disrespected by the major audio press. Are hardcore audiophile not convinced by the Omni-directional design and results, and so it never gets a f"air shake or serious audition,
It may just be that it is just plain difficult to find a dealer that handles Ohm speakers and to my memory, I have never seen a pair at one of the shows. And granted, I may be wrong on both counts. But for a speaker manufacturer that is located a half mile or so from my brother-in-law (downtown Brooklyn), who lives maybe a few miles from me (Central Queens), their existence couldn't be more of a secret.
Several years back, I had a flirtation with acquiring a pair of Ohms, I could not make sense out of their web site. I don't have a problem ordering sight unseen and on-line, but I could not figure out what to even consider and if the speaker's dimensions would work in my apartment, etc (Note: OHM's website today is light year's more intelligible than it used to be).
I like the idea of omni-directional speakers and engulfing an area in sound. There were some few well executed examples in the 1970's. In a few years, when we pack up and head to our retirement home, I would strongly consider going omni-directional.
To Rich, you have made many of the same observation that I have about Ohm-Walsh. I have to confess of never going to shows, but I am very surprised that they don't attempt to get a booth and " strut their stuff". however, electronic shows are usually the worst venue to demo a speaker and not the greatest environment to provide good sound
There is thread on AG that goes back to 2006 or 2008 that ask "Has anyone heard the Walsh micros or Walsh Talls. The first 20 respondes I read were very favorable about the sound they produced which surprisingly lauded transparency, bass response, top end smoothness. In that mix, one member claimed he tried them and returned them, because he got tired of their "parlor tricks" For me ,that comment was a troubling indictment, and triggered some of my own reservations of ever considering them. I made the association that the sound was around the listener, was not distinct or detailed, and kind of amorphous or nonspecific in imaging or sound staging. In looking back at this negative perspective recently, I thought maybe OW over the last 25 years has perfected the performance of their black basket driver which crowns the top of all their models.
I recall in the 1970's visiting a dealer who had a speaker made by a Swedish company, Sonus Labs that was a rectangular box about 16 inches high, and 25 inches long The two drivers were visible on a slanted baffle board, and the speaker was placed vertically with the baffle board and drivers facing the wall. I listened to them for a hour, and felt they produced very pleasant sound, not particularly dynamic, but the soundstage was wide and reasonably deep, and most importantly, they sounded accurate and detailed. However, I was just getting into audio and did not want to take a chance on such an exotic design. Keep in mind, the Bose 901, and the small box like speaker, Bose 501 were going much the same thing as the Sonus Labs model.
I actually owned a pair of Bose 501, and loved their sound. with the added bonus of them having deep, taut bass. ( I must have played the Band's first album 50 times just to here the bass drum on the cut "Jemina Surrender" and "the Great Divide".. ....Thanks for the comments.
Sunnyjim. you are welcome any time in the central Maryland area to visit and hear my ohms. I have f5 series 3, 100series 3, and my old refurbed Ohm Ls. Also a few other brands running as well for comparisons.
To mapman, you are a prince among men. I greatly appreciate your offer, but I live in Los Angeles. I do have a bud who lives in Charlottsville, Virginia. So if I should visit him, we will take his Jag for a spin to your place and at your discretion, of course.
I am a big fan of omnidirectional speakers - when they are executed in a proper fashion. The sound just happens naturally where it doesn't get thrown at you with a shovel. I ordered a set of Ohm speakers and was disappointed. I sent them back. They sounded like they had horse blankets thrown over them. I didn't understand that if they were omnidirectional why the rear wave was suppressed with a cover.
Decware has a good omnidirectional speaker you may want to try. They have a 30-day money back return policy, and are head and shoulders above the woodworking that Ohm sends out.
Ohm sells direct only these days and relies mostly on word of mouth for sales. I doubt there are any financial connections between ohm and other entities in the business other than their overseas distributors. Hence the lack of attention and all that goes with that with many well known brands. With no financial connections or dependencies not much reason for others to give any attention. Money and connection talk in business. Just like in politics. The disrespect I have observed is rare but has been from others with competing products carrying big price tags usually. The usual stuff.
To add to what Mapman already said I would also point out they don't advertise, hence reviewers typically won't give them much attention. The current Ohm line up are made up of two drivers, an upside down near full range driver crossed over very high to an angled inward tweeter. The rear of the "can" that they're mounted in is damped along the backside to allow for placement somewhat close to the wall.
I currently own some 25+ year old Ohm Walsh 3's and I will never go back to front firing speakers again, at least in our main family room. The Ohm's fill the entire room with smooth, detailed and non-fatiguing sound and really do a nice job with music and movies. In fact the best compliment I can give them as that I no longer fret over the sound of my system as I used to, I just sit back and enjoy.
These will be a mixed bag for some, as the look of the driver set up and the unusual cabinet or the "sound everywhere" performance of the Ohm's may be off putting compared to more conventional offerings. Which only proves there is no one type of speaker that is for everyone. I have a pristine pair of ADS 570/2's in my man-loft system and I love them, however I'm typically the only one up there so they work just fine in that setup.
You'll have to audition them yourself to see if they are for you, when I did, it took about 2 minutes to know they were coming home with me, as always YMMV, good luck!
I'll agree with Maplegrove. Some people find the idea of an omni to be misguided and I'm sure that some large percentage of those folks diss Ohms. I think they're wrong, but I understand that they may feel the same way about me.
Could be that we all have just accepted and became accustomed to direct two channel sound. I really don't like the idea of music surrounding me, and to declare it good and the best ever heard. Maybe the Ohm design team declared war on that older tradition and sincerely works against the traditional execution of sound, and aspires to widen the experience of music in a home setting without making the music sound distant, washed out, amorphous, or non specific etc.
I wish Ohm followed the traditional merchandizing methods of showroom auditions, and in store purchasing. This home trial is a good idea but seems more complicated than the simple showroom demos where you either purchase them or take the salesman's card and go home. In the case of Micro Talls speakers, I really don't want to tie up $2000 in an escrow account while trying to decide whether I like the speaker or not. .
Could be that we all have just accepted and became accustomed to direct two channel sound.
I really don’t like the idea of music surrounding me, and to declare it good and the best ever heard.
They don’t surround you any more than any other speaker omni or otherwise which is practically never. If it happens ever it would probably be due to room acoustics. I’ve never heard it.
They are not really different from others that can have a large soundstage and good "holographic" imaging where sound is detached from speakers when set up right. You do have to listen to the music in the soundstage however, seemingly not the speakers. The presentation is just more convincingly live sounding than usual to me. Focus on listening to the speakers and you miss out on everything.
Sunnyjim---Bravo on your taste in music! The Band and the two songs mentioned are fantastic, but the album those songs are on (self titled---The Band, commonly referred to as the brown album) is actually their second, Music From Big Pink (containing the hit "The Weight") being their first. The bass drum you mention is a great sounding Gretsch with the front head removed (common practice in recording studios)---fat and punchy. By the way, while the drums on "Across The Great Divide" are played by The Band’s astoundingly great drummer/singer Levon Helm (listen to his playing on ATGD, wherein Levon plays the main recurring fill alternating between bass drum and snare drum; boom crack/crack/crack boom/boom/boom crack/crack/crack boom/boom/boom---brilliant!), the drums on "Jemima Surrender" are played by Band pianist/singer Richard Manuel, himself a very interesting and musical drummer. That’s Richard playing drums on "Rag Mama Rag", "Up On Cripple creek", and "When You Awake" as well.
In general. I’ll go out on a limb and say omnis or even very wide dispersion speakers (like the OHMs) deliver a different presentation than speakers that are more directional and beam the sound more. They are two totally different presentations in many ways.
In general I think omnis including OHM are better at delivering a sound that seems more like a live performance despite being a recording. The large sweet spot and coherency of the soundstage from different listening positions is most indicative of this unique aspect and similar to what one would hear live. OHMs use of the wide range Walsh style driver to cover all frequencies up to 7khz or so is OHMs most unique feature compared to others. It delivers outstanding coherency to most of the music heard (vocals and midrange in particular) in comparison to most others with crossovers in this range. That along with the big and coherent sound stage from most any listening position is what makes the OHMS uniquely convincing IMHO.
Whereas more directional designs deliver more of the traditional two channel stereo recorded experience.
Having had my OHMs and more traditional alternatives set up for comparison in various rooms in my house, I always find the OHMs more convincing and involving musically overall even though the specific differences in the presentation are subtle and things more similar than different overall in most ways. Its just more lifelike!
I also agree that people either will take to the sound and never be satisified otherwise again or not. The difference can be subtle but significant! Others can come close but its not easy.
Other than that, in the end the other main advantage is the large sweet spot which either benefits peoples listening habits or not. If you are content being lodged into a small sweet spot to listen all the time, or coherency of soundstage from many locations does not matter to you, there are many more good choices out there than otherwise..
To dbp24 Thank you correction; I had an intuition that was not their first album, but nevertheless, it was a great one, combining tuneful and emotive songs. It is sad that Richard Manuel is gone by suicide; and Levon Helms from cancer. Like Bowie and Glen Frey, they provide great music and lasting memories.
I love my Decware ERRx radial speakers and can't really comment on the Ohms as I have never heard them but the radials work for me in my dreaded L shaped living room where conventional speakers have not done so well. The sweet spot is everywhere, the imaging spectacular and the they just disappear in the room.
Im driving them with a 1 watt Micro ZOTL amp so they are very efficient. OK, so they took about 7 months to arrive but worth it.
Mapman, I too am in the central Maryland area so if you ever want to get together and hear each other's radials let me know.
Right you are, Sunnyjim. Also gone is Band bassist/singer Rick Danko, who died in his sleep at home. Rick, Levon, and Richard were the three voices of The Band, who often passed around the melody of a song amongst themselves, singing different verses, or even different lines of the same verse. The three of them also made up the best rhythm section of any Group with which I’m familiar, playing at the level of the best studio musicians. There will never be another The Band.
Sunnyjim: As a happy owner (for 5+ years) of the Ohm Walsh 2000s, I beg to differ with your preconceptions of omni sound in general and Ohm Walsh sound in particular. You can read my impressions in the review section of this site, as well as on the lengthy "Ohm Micro Walsh Tall, Who's Actually Heard 'Em" thread.
First off, I don't think Ohm is disrespected at all. It is simply off most journalists' radar. Ohm does not advertise, reducing the chance they will be reviewed by the major audio mags (although if you search for them, they have been reviewed by some of the big-name reviewers in the past). Ohm only sells direct, so it has no dealer network. Also, and John Strohbeen, owner of Ohm, told me this personally, he does not do audio shows, as he feels he would not have enough time to properly dial in a system in those notoriously awful sounding hotel rooms. He is a bit of a perfectionist.
As for the "sound" of omnis, my experience is that they differ as widely one to another as do conventional dynamic speakers in their character, including thier soundstage reproduction. In fact, my previous speaker, Vandersteen 1Cs, actually projected more sound in front of the speaker plane, and near the listening position, than the Ohms do. As I have commented, the center fill on the Ohms is outstanding and solid, with stable imaging and well-defined images. When there is phasey information in the recording, the sound does indeed come from all over the room, but if the recording is straight-up, the soundstage is mostly at or behind the speaker plane. IMHO, John Strohbeen knows how to voice a loudspeaker extremely well. That is as much an art as it is a science.
As for the pricing, I don't find prices per speaker as unusual or deceptive, as some may want odd numbers of speakers for surround purposes. Golden Ear does the same in their advertisements, btw.
I agree that the Golden Ear line offers an excellent value, and had they been available when I was shopping for speakers they would have been in contention. But it would have been difficult to get a 120 day in-home trial on the GE's like you get with Ohms. That opportunity to hear the Ohms in my room, with my gear, for an extended period, and allow a lot of break-in, was priceless.
Without meaning to be harsh, I will quote J. Gordon Holt, founder of Strereophile, who used to say "if you haven't heard it, you don't have an opinion". If you are shopping for speakers, try the Ohms in your home. Yes, you will be out the shipping charges if you don't like them. Or, use this site to find a local Ohm owner and ask for a demonstration. I've done that before, and would do it for you, except I live in New Jersey.
I'm actually glad OHM does not do shows and explicitly target the high end audio market. I like their blue collar keep the overhead and prices for good sound as low as can be business model. Most high end audio companies tend to lean the exact opposite way.
I still have my Mirage M5si's, which are technically bipole speakers, but have narrow depth to be as omni as possible. I've had them in daily use for nearly 19 years.
I also had Mirage Omnipolars in my 2-channel living room. Omnis sound natural. They generally sound like live music played in a live space. They throw a realistic 3-D soundstage, and as with live music, you can even listen from outside the pair of speakers and still have an even-sounding soundstage, just as you would with live music.
Reviews of omnis frequently mention that "you won't get pinpoint imaging" as you would with mini-monitors or whatnot, but overwhelmingly, you don't get pinpoint imaging in live performances either unless the ensemble is small and you're sitting fairly close.
Another thing I learned when I was shopping for speakers two years ago--the overall soundstage and imaging of omnis is not that different from a front-firing speaker with wide dispersion and uniform in-room power response. In other words, good off-axis frequency response. In particular I was auditioning Sonus Faber Venere 2.5s and--although they have a different overall dispersion pattern--they had a pretty similar forward-firing presentation to my Mirage OMD-15s.
To me, absolute edge-defined pinpoint imaging, while fascinating, is sort of a parlor trick and doesn't often reflect the live music experience.
Unless you're a gotta-have-it pinpoint image junkie, omni directional speakers do just fine, throw a very sociable soundstage, and are less prone to localized suckouts and beaming.
"Reviews of omnis frequently mention that "you won’t get pinpoint imaging" as you would with mini-monitors or whatnot, but overwhelmingly, you don’t get pinpoint imaging in live performances either unless the ensemble is small and you’re sitting fairly close. "
With the OHMs set up right imaging is about as good as one would expect at a live performance. That’s part of what makes the sound more lifelike and convincing to me. More like a live performance even if a highly mixed recording. If recorded live and well with simple miking, then bingo, you are there. Many Mapleshade and Dorian recordings in particular are recorded this way. Some others as well but only a small minority.
On most material, I find that the imaging/staging from the Ohms is unusually convincing. Placement in space is specific enough that sources can easily be located and the spread across the room, between and beyond the speakers, is continuous in way that feels very organic to me. Further, there's a sense of weight and body to those localized images that strikes me as unusually natural sounding (vis a vis designs using narrower dispersion patterns). I never quite understood this criticism of omnis. It's even less appropriate to the MBL speakers, which (tho they have tonality issues to my ear) are about as SOTA in this area as anything I've ever heard.
I can't resist being the devil's advocate re this forum...
I like omnis. Having heard the original Ohm's decades ago, I was enthralled by what I heard. Never could afford a pair, never had the space to live with them either. However...the current Ohm's are not a true Walsh radiator. They are a pleasant experience and a good affordable line of speakers. Google Walsh speakers. Look at the 'images of..' page. You will see amidst the pics the original Ohms, with their conical elements. You will also see the current Ohms as well. If one keeps looking, you might notice a pic of what's UNDER the cylindrical mesh under the grille. It's an inverted speaker; likely carefully chosen or design, but fairly typical. But it's NOT a truncated cone as in the originals. There is a big difference in that. The Walsh patent goes into why and how.
I've been engaged in DIY'ing Walsh radiators for my own bemusement for awhile now, 'spoofing' a slightly larger version of the DDD driver used in the German Physiks units. They're not 'perfect'....yet. But, having heard the 'new' Ohms as well as the 'old' Ohms, I'm pleased with what I've been able to accomplish so far. Not 'audiophile' quality....yet. But I spend more of my time of late listening to my 'steampunk speakers' (a friend's observation, which actually tickles me) than my 'regular' speakers, 'warts' and all.
The new Ohms are nice speakers. I will not speak negatively of them, as they fill a niche. HHR offers an updated version of the original design, and I believe they appear at some shows. HHR is a true Walsh unit. Both concerns are 'web-only' companies.
And then there's MBL. Omnis about as far as current tech allows. They're supposed to be fantastic. And at their price, they'd better be.
Your observation is on point. The current Ohms are less true to the original Walsh design than are the HHRs. Just one question:
What makes you think that that is a good thing (for HHR)?
BTW, I've never heard the HHR. For all I know, it blows away the Ohms. I just don't assume that that's necessarily true. Particularly on the basis that you've identified. John S's variation is certainly less expensive to produce. It's also less fragile. Beyond that, you'd need to do a side by side to determine which design you prefer. Outside of Mapman (and John Strohbeen), I'm not sure who is on a position to make that judgement.
I own the Ohm-Walsh 5000 so I cannot make a direct comparison with the Micros or the 1000s. Is the sound "...around the listener....not distinct or detailed...kind of amorphous or nonspecific in imaging or sound staging"? No, not if set-up correctly and I don't find that proper placement is difficult to achieve.
I'll not repeat in so many words what I think have been accurate descriptions of how the Ohms present music than have already been made by Map, martykl, polarin, and bondmanp. Each, in their own way, has done an masterful job of describing their experiences.
I agree with many of the comments above.
Most apt for me, which is why I will always keep them, is their being described as having a "sociable soundstage". I rarely sit still and listen to an entire record. I appreciate the fact that I can get up and move around and the soundstage does not completely collapse.
I do enjoy I can move quite a ways to either side and still have a very "organic" presentation with remarkably "solid, stable imaging".
I can sit with my wife and we both agree the music has a "sense of weight and body". You'll not have that experience with Maggies - at least for the both of you.
It is definitely has "non-fatiguing sound" which is very important to me. I don't want speakers dictating the kind of music I need to listen to enjoy the experience. If that were true, I would have to throw away a lot of my music . And yes, I get as much detail as I need.
I'll chime in here because my very fist speakers were Ohm L's, (one of the classic bookshelf speakers of the seventies) because I was an Ohm fan back in the day, I did have a chance to listen to several of their Walsh models. They were very open airy speakers, that by today's standards would be paired with a sub woofer. Nothing bad about the sound otherwise. The sound was somewhat like a electrostatic, in that you could walk around the speaker and still feel, and hear the sound stage.
A little off-topic maybe, sorry, but I remember when Ohms were prominently sold at Tech HiFi and seemed to be more well known back then in the 1970s-1980s. I had a pair for years and thought they were great but don't remember the details of their sound now.
As a newcomer to mid-hi-fi sound in 1983, I stumbled onto a pair of Ohm Walsh-4's that were just a year old, and picked them up. Fed them a diet of NAD 2400 power amp 100 w or dual-bridged 240 w juice, and no matter what, they filled a fairly large listening room magnificently.
For those who have not seen them, the early Walsh series have dense felt baffles over the outer/rear dispersion fields, so that they are somewhat directional, even though the mid/woofer drivers want to disperse omidirectionally through their upward-facing perforated metal cages. And their tweeters are angled at approximately 45 degrees toward midline.
They were the finest all-around speakers I have had until at age 10 the spider membranes crapped out and they lost most of their awesome bass.
The concept of the Walsh design is great. Waiting for a bit of cash to return the driver units to Brooklyn for a rebuild.
jbmays - IMHO, a rebuild will be well worth it. Ohm has improved the quality of the materials used, and the life of the Ohm Walsh drivers, at least the current models, is estimated by Ohm to be 40-50 years before repairs will be needed due to normal useage.
jwatsonnj - I do in fact run my Ohm Walsh 2000s with a pair of Vandersteen 2Wq subs. Pure heaven! And I am also in NJ. What exit are you?
Not sure if sunnyjim has left the building but one additional thing I appreciate about these speakers is that, after owning a few other speakers, the Walsh Ohms have educated me in the importance of actually enjoying music. I have owned very detailed speakers. Uber-detail will be fine for some, but I do wonder, at the risk of sounding cliche, if they really enjoy their music or simply enjoy listening to their system.
finsup....Yes,, I am still in the building or should I say audio asylum (LOL) You make a very important about the issue of listening to the system or just enjoying the music. However, if what a listener hears is edgy in the highs, jumbled in the midrange on crescendo's, and raucous rock finales, or an a noticeable. incoherentcy of musical presentation across the board, then the listener may feel intuitively that it does not satisfy his general expectation. Without having to employ cornball cliques: you may not get that "peaceful easy feeling" from the music you worked to achieve.
This is NOT necessarily abdicating the music for some ideal of musical perfection by technological whizzerty . The "two" are tied and intertwined too closely together. This does not mean every listening session is a flop by not delivering that so called "peaceful easy feeling" because there are too many parameters that go into the a natural, or musical presentation of the medium; that is, from electrical hash in the AC outlet, or a disgruntled partner who just does not like the look, color,and shape of the speaker in the living room.
I think audiophiles or aspiring audiophiles who put in the hours of research, and trial and error auditioning realize listening to music requires a high degree of concentration so as to enter the flow of the music played, and the potential genius inherent in its structure. This focus is not some elitist pretension that many non audiophiles contend and accuse us; but, for the record, casual listeners, or listening while you work, or listeners passing through the room on the way to the kitchen or bathroom are at a deficit. I don't hear a thing when I listen casually or distracted, so I listen alone. No playing slap and tickle with the girlfriend, or watching the last segment of Dr. Phil while Beethoven,or the Allman brothers are wailing away at the peak of their musical creation.
I think you point deserves a separate thread, and I am sure the divergence of opinion will be great and at times caustic. Thanks for the comment!!
To construe what I wrote as a suggestion that these speakers don't allow you to hear into the music, I think you may have misunderstood, but then it seems as if you prefer the traditional presentation of monopole speakers and are partial to very analytical speakers. I'll offer that these are not the type of speakers that will allow you to hear the second violinist pass gas. Sorry for the crudity. So, yes, they do lack the resolution you'll find in other speakers. What they do well is render a smooth, coherent presentation.
As to your specific misgiving that these speakers might play some kind of "parlor trick" and that the sound was "around the listener, was not distinct or detailed, and kind of amorphous or nonspecific in imaging or sound staging", then I think your misgivings are misplaced.
Still, what you want to do -
concentrate so as to enter the flow of the music played - is not what I look for in a speaker which is to enjoy music and appreciate the perspective the Ohm Walsh lays out. Neither approach is wrong, but I read of incessant audiophile- nervosa on these forums and am grateful I am not so afflicted.
As to your subject title, it may be that Ohm
speakers are not so much disrespected as to being misunderstood.
What the ohms are not is bright in any way which sometimes can be perceived as more detailed.
How owe detailed they are depends largely on what they are fed and how set up in the room.
I do do not find them wanting in detail compared to say my Dynaudios which are more renowned for that. Or using good headphones as a reference for listening most directly to the recording. THey are definitely less bright. Which is truly more detailed depends. For all practical purposes I find it to be a moot point in the end. Which is better in regards to detail is mostly a question of what one is listening for. Assuming both are being fed a clean detailed signal to start with.
I agree with Mapman. My Maggies and Mark & Daniel Rubys are definitely brighter than my MicroWalsh Talls (circa 2004) but there is plenty of detail without any of the hardness. I'm always surprised audiophiles dismiss Ohm speakers so easily and often without hearing for themselves. One day I hope to move up to the 2000's.
I think both of you may be reading too much into my
statement above about the Ohms lacking resolution. I perhaps should have used a qualifier such
as they lack “some” of the resolution that can be found in other speakers. Not much, but they are not the last word in detail. That said, the Ohms do offer great detail,
again depending on room, placement and quality of upstream components.
For me, however, it is not the [very decent] level of detail
that compels me to write, as I did above, that these are keepers for me. Please see my Feb 19 post above. Rather, it is their rich, smooth, coherent
sound – their ability to connect me with the music. It is an almost-there live experience for me.
Almost. Very close. For me.
way, I really like Maggies. What they
bring to the table, they bring incredibly well.
Yet, for what I want in speakers, and need given how I listen to music,
they don’t bring it well enough. I can go to a concert with my family – all five
of us. I can switch places with any one
of them and while I hear a small tonal shift, I am still engaged. Sitting on living room sofa, in the sweet
spot, with the Ohms, I get that almost-there live experience, sitting back mid-hallish. If I get up, move around, switch places on
the sofa, I get a small shift in how the music sounds but it doesn’t collapse
on me they way it would with Maggies.
What I am trying to say – to SJ’s concern - is that this isn’t
some fake, artificial trick the designer has used. In much the same way I can change seats
during a concert and still maintain that live connection to the music, so too can I
with the Ohms.
Map, I think it was you
who wrote in Rebbi’s epic Ohm Walsh Micro Talls thread (still going strong!)
that the Ohm’s had plenty of “meat on the bones” If it wasn’t you, then a tip of the hat to
the forgotten author. What that
description conveys to me is the rich, harmonic, musical space these speakers
Anyway, SJ, sorry to take this thread in a slightly different
direction, but I hope by now that your initial query has been answered by all
the posters above.
Finsup, Let me state for the record, I don't believe I misunderstood you that Ohm speakers don't let you "listen into the music". Actually from what you and Mapman and some others have said, it seems listeners are immersed in the music and can enjoy the music, and also analytically ponder
Also for the record, I was basically describing "HOW I LISTEN", NOT HOW EVERYBODY SHOULD". I have no desire to pen a manifesto type guide to listening, that thunders.... "you must listen this way with this design of speakers or else"
I am an analytical either by choice of genetics. I trained as a historian, and to dig for the truth not what seems to be truth of events However, I know I have always listened analytically, and also enjoyed the music, unless it really sounded sour, edgy, or "just not right" (Please note this phrase "just sounds right" which should be considered as part of this exchange. it is a key idea).
I never have either pulled out my hair, or cried into my pillow,. or in my beer all night because of a disappointing listening session..
Yes, I have gone through several speakers over the last 45 years, but made those changes not out of frustration, but curiosity as to what other speaker could deliver in terms of "NOTABLE or discernible" better sound and presentation. (of course within reasonable price range)
If that is a sign of chronic audio nervosa, and ignoring the music played, then I may be guilty. (Please don't repo my current speakers, if officially charged by the membership (LOL)
However in the interim, I learned a great deal about sound, the physics of speaker design, and the structure of musical composition. It is impossible (at least to me) to listen to Bach's "Toccata and Fugue in D Minor) not to perceive the minor and major structural changes, and yet not appreciate the musical totality of this masterwork which I believe was created by Bach to test the organ at Thomaskirche Cathedral.
Get a copy either a mint vinyl, or CD of: "E.Power Biggs Play Bach at Thomaskirche" It is impossible to just have this music wash over me.it is an also an outstanding recording. Is it possible to. listen to the Allman's " powerful tune "In Memory of Elizabeth Reed" from their "Live at Fillmore East" The changes that Duane Allman and Richard Betts made at such high velocity playing is remarkable. I think this music and other masterworks of rock can be enjoyed as music and musical structure
Lastly, I think you should launch a thread that addresses the first point you made in the previous reply. Good Luck and Cheers!!
I'm working on that 'brightness' issue in my own fashion, BTW. I agree w/Mapman on his observations and feel that the Ohms, new and older, always seemed to lack that 'sheen' that is present with a direct radiating source. I have my 'suspicions' that I'm looking to investigate with my 'toys'. *S*
Sunnyjim, Right On. ;) 2/28 post A....
All things are flawed, ultimately. How much 'flaw' one is willing to entertain with regard to the experience, however engaged, is the bottom line. As is the resources available, time and effort vs. quality desired, and how deeply one desires to dive into such pursuits. Oh, and the SAF, Yes.
To the original poster's questions, he needs to keep in mind that different people focus on different aspects of reproduction. What takes one person to nirvana will leave another unimpressed.
One observation about the Ohms (I owned a pair of the original Fs) which I haven't seen mentioned in this thread. Since they put out a lot of sound to the sides and rear, they intentionally interact with the room more than front-firing speakers. That's one of the reasons I didn't consider them for my current room. The right rear wall has an open doorway and the left side doesn't. While I'm not a fanatic about pin-point precision in imaging, I do like a reasonable sonic picture with instruments where they should be and stable. My back wall screws that up a lot more for Ohms (or Maggies, etc.) than conventional speakers.
When well setup in an appropriate room, the Ohms do have a bigger sweet spot than forward-firing speakers. That's nice, but doesn't bother me too much. When I'm listening critically, I sit where I need to be. When I'm listening casually and up and about, I don't notice an imprecise image. My main concern it that situation is correct tonality.
Finally, I think Ohms get as much respect from the press as any maker, it is just that they fly under the radar most of the time.
I recently visited the Ohm factory in Brooklyn to see my friends there, and, while I was there a customer came in to listen to the 1000s - after listening to a half dozen or so songs from his iPhone through his own DAC (which he had brought with him) he had a big smile and handed his credit card over on the spot to have the speakers shipped to him (as he was in town on a business trip and flying back).
I'm quite happy with their 1000 in particular as it hits a few "sweet spots" in terms of being sleek enough to pass most "Spouse Approval Tests" (AKA WAF) and has remarkably good bass for it's size.
I'm back in Ohio now and brought a pair of 1000 home with me. I'll probably be using the "tops" (the woofer/tweeter "can" assembly) on top of some custom cabinets with an additional woofer, not because the 1000 needs more base, but just because I also happen to like "DIY Audio" as a hobby and it's gonna be a ton of fun working on this project.
For a while I had a pair of KEF Reference Series 105/2s in the living room but my wife didn't like them (too big from her perspective) so I had to remove them. Hopefully the 1000s will not bother her.
Guess I'll have to post a "for sale" thread here eventually and sell the KEFs.