I've owned a pair of Audio Note AN/J speakers for more than ten years and I really haven't had the desire to trade them for something else. I bought them because all of my other components at the time were Audio Note and there is a great synergy between Audio Note components. They are not "uncolored" but they are very musical and involving. The only speakers I have compared them to was a pair of Impulse Lali speakers which were great in many aspects but unsuitable for my room at the time.
Perhaps if you let us know which other components you are considering using Audio Note speakers with and your music reproduction goals you could receive some knowledgeable and informed advice and opinions.
I chose AN because Peter has voiced all his products to work together. No more mixing and matching.
Compared to almost all the rooms at RMAF my AN system sounded like real live music. AN just sounds right.
You can not just talk about AN speakers without talking about the AN amps, cables etc... It is a commitment to go all they way with Peter's simple thinking on audio gear.
Speakers for sale, 350 lbs. Not for me. I will never go back to the rat race of mixing and matching components.
I must confess that I do have a EAR 324 phono that is a killer component. Until I can get a M10 it will do.
Learn the thinking behind AN speakers and you will be rewarded greatly.
I chose AN/E HE as replacements for Proac D15's which were driven by an AN amp. The Proac's sounded great but after several discussions with Peter, the plunge was made and the speakers were added. I have never been happier. Keep in mind that the amp is a low powered SET and paired with the E's makes a fantastic combination. There is no reason to believe that any of the Snell based AN speakers will not sound great with any other tube based equipment. The E's were purchased via the internet and were never auditioned. This was a leap of faith yet for the first time in over 35 years I feel very content with what I have and am not longing for "that something else."
I could not agree more to Willrobbins. I am also an AN-E HE owner and they are everything a music lover would ask for. Very musical and do cope with everything from rock to choral music. I owned at least 10 speakers before and never this contend. I still listen to many alternatives because infected with the disease like many others but never able to find anything this satisfactory. I used to listen occasionally to classicals because this kind of music do not sound very well on every disc with other components, but with AN it never fails to amaze. Everyday it is Chopin, it is Stravinsky, it is Mahler, it is Satie now. Do yourself a favor and meet somewhere with this enchanting brand. And no neither my front end nor the amps are AN. And yes I did a/b comparisons with Coincident, Harbeth, Wilson, Von Schweikert, Dali and Escalante Design. And by chance I am also a former Proac 3.8 owner.
To Rbrowne: my system consists of the following components: PrimaLuna Prologue8 CD player, Cary SLP98 pre-amp, Carver M1.5T amp, Thiel CS 2 2 spkrs. Interconnects: Harmonic Tech ProSilway MkIII, spkrs cables: Cardas Golden Ref (1.5meters.) I love the sound of my system but I know it could be better. At this time, I'd like to replace my amp and my speakers because I want to go with SET amps. SETs will not drive my 86db efficent Thiels...at least not satisfactorily. Question: do you have an opinion about the AN-E kits and the kit amps? Thanks. Michael
Ahmet1969...thanks for your response. I appreciate your mentioning that your front end components are not Audio Note. Did you go the kit route or purchase the Audio spkr from a dealer? Thanks. Michael
I really like A.N. a lot. I know several designers of A.N. gear. One of my best audiophile friends has a complete ultra high-end set up in a dedicated room with about 5-6K LP's and no windows. His A.N. system makes wonderful music. We tried his entire system in my ultra modern CA home (an Eichler) , lots of windows and totally open interiors, and it did not sound nearly as good (I'm being kind). My guess is that I have a lousy house for A.N. design center. So your room situation makes a lot of difference even with spectacularly great gear.
They are wonderful speakers.
It is not a kit, I bought it from a dealer. Another thing you must be aware is that the speakers really need to burn to sound their best. So any comment before 500 hours is premature. What is funny the a/b test with the other speakers were done on brand new speakers. About the amplificarion, till now I drove them with three different amp, antique sound, an e otto integrated, an e quest monoblocks and tom evans lineer a, all produced very good results, but at the end I chose to keep my antique sounds (maybe again because the an amps i tried were not burned properly, that is burn in is a major issue with an than I know any other brand) But the main point is I see and experience no reason why they should not sound good with quality components.
Ahmet, Did you purchase online? If so, from who? I'm in ATL and there aren't any local dealers.
I am in Turkey so it would not help. But I know Amhearst Audio (Bob Neill) and Audiofederation do carry the line in the states so they may suggest you something. I had great help from ahearst audio web site when I was considering AN products and Bob is really avery kind and helpful guy. He is also a very reliable sourceç
I live 5.5 hrs. from you in Destin, FL. You are welcome to stop in for a visit to hear my all AN system.
AN speaker are hard to come buy on the used market.
I bought AN-E/SpE speakers in August to replace ProAc Response 2.5 speakers.
I bought the speakers a) because they were recommended by my stereo guru (who, in all fairness, is also an AN dealer) and b) because they were described as good speakers for corner placements, which are where my speakers are placed. I also like the AudioNote design philosophy.
I am very happy with the speakers and wouldn't think of replacing them. They are very natural and reveal a lot of detail which I didn't hear from the ProAcs. They sound just great (to quote Duke Ellington: "if it sounds good, it IS good.") I can also listen to the speakers for hours and hours (unlike, for example, B&W speakers, which give me a headache).
If you care: the rest of the system is ARC LS25 Mark II preamp; Classe CA-2200 amp; CEC TL-51x transport; Accustic Arts Mark II DAC; AudioNote cabling. I listen mostly to jazz and classical.
I own the kit 3 AN speaker and run them with a Soro SE amp Lexus wire, AN-VX IC and Muse CD Audio Note TT1 Arm 1 with AT 440mla cart.
the main quality that impresses me about AN speakers is their open quality, they also have a purity of sound (which I belive has to do with the minimal crossover design and quality driver matching).
Something that surprises me is the low frequency information, I am always aware of what is going on with the skin on the drums or the soundstage reflection effects - something to do with the corner loading and stated 17 hz lower frequency limit (usually measure at 30 hz though) also dynamic range in the low frequencies (and hiogh frequencies) is terrific
Also when listening to something like a saxaphone I often notice the sound of the mouthpiece and the effect of air being blown through a horn - these things remind me of live music.
the downside of these speakers is they lose a little midrange clarity in the corners but need to be placed there to appreciate the dynamic range it offers, also - they need a quality source, if you feed them garbage they can sound thin, bright, pinched or ordinary, they are pickier than most speakers but I am at the point where I want them in my house, their virtues are musical and can transport you.
I used to own JM Reynaud Trentes which are amazing speakers and they have terrific clarity in the midrange and a seductive sound, I could live with them again but would miss the open quality and full sound of the kit 3.
good luck and happy listening
I would be interested in anyone who can compare Audio Note AN/E kits to factory-assembled speakers. Also corner placement versus near front wall (but not corner) placement. Thanks.
Check AA under Audio Note kits, RGA mentions the difference