B&W Nautilus 802 compared to 804

I'm considering upgrading to the 802's from the 804's. Are there any opinions on the Musical Fidelity Nu-vista m3 integrated driving the 802's with a Linn Ikemi cd player for front end? I would like more bottom end but I like the focus and tight sound of the 804's.
Get a REL Storm III sub if you want more bottom end. Very musical audiophile sub. Two Storms would be even better yet!
I doubt very highly ANY sub will be necessary with the 802N's. Substantial low end. Sugarbrie, you mean the subs in stereo with the 804's, right? That is a fabulous alternative.
I second the subwoofer recommendation. N802's take some breathing room and serious amplification to really sound their best. Think 300 watt monoblocks. Unless your short term upgrade path is to replace the integrated with seperates I expect you might end up very dissatisfied with the N802's. A properly choosen subwoofer will allow you to retain the strengths of the N804's and add the well controlled bottom end that will complement your existing system.
I think the nu vista would easily power the 802s.I have powered much more difficult loads very easily to extremely loud levels with that amp. Oh and BTW the nu vista puts out 310 watts a channel so its more than those monoblocks!!! It should not be an issue as to whether or not it will power them. I would, however, change to different speaker like dynaudio confidence 5s. I have listened to the two extensively and there is no difference which is better. Guess which ones i bought..... There are many other better speakers in the 5k used range than the 802s and the nu vista can power anything out there so there is unlimited choice. I would change manufacturers. I hope this helps, but somehow i dont think you will consider other speakers...
how do you add a sub to the 804's? where do you wire the sub to?
The REL's contain explicit instructions for connecting to your system, basically you take their proprietary cable with three colored wires at the amp end and hook the red and black to your right channel + and - and then the yellow to your left channel + and the sub takes the exact same signal that is going to your speakers for effortless blending and matching. The REL is absolutely fantastic, I just bought a tiny 15" cube, the REL Q201E, and cannot believe how tuneful, rich, and musical the bass and midrange now sound w/my tiny Mirage monitors. I cannot overestimate the difference a REL, any model, will make in your system. --Sarah
As Sarah is saying, the REL connects to the speaker terminals on your amp. So they receive the same signal as your N804s and will integrate perfectly. You will not know the sub is there until you turn it off. Many subs have a crossover that cut off and replace the low bass from your main speakers. RELs are designed to let your main speakers run full range as before. They fill in the bottom below what your main speakers can produce. So if you like the sound of your N804s and your system as a whole, this is a perfect way to add what is missing. RELs are not boom boxes. They are as tuneful as your main speakers. And yes, when I said two subs above, I did mean one for each channel.
Yo Jeffc,
The N804's are nice speakers and can be made to sound even better with the addition of a sub. B&W has a sub that will add the bottom octave and take a little load off that NuVista amp. I recommend the ASW-4000 (if you feel like spending $3K) or the REL Studio III (also $3k) and then you wont have to upgrade later. On the other side is the fact that the N802 has far better midrange and tweeter technology going for it. The bass issue aside, the midrange "bowling ball head" and driver is what sets the N802, N801, and the new N800 apart from the N803 and N804. On good electronics they can deliver the tranparency of ribbons and have set new standards for performance for their respective prices. I have a freind that has sold his Apogee Divas to go to the N802's. Another is selling his Slant 8's to buy 802's. Most of my friend have N802's and one just sold his to get the N800's Unless your room is huge and has high ceilings, your NuVista should be plenty of power. If you have the room and the bucks, I think your NuVista with the N802's and a sub would be a killer combo.
Best regards,
I would consider the N803's. I have owned 805's, 804's, and 803's. The 803's were fabulous! Unless you really have a VERY large room that can handle the 802's, I would upgrade to the 803's for less money than getting high quality subs. Your room will be less cluttered too. The footprint of the 803's isn't radically larger than the 804's yet the difference in performance is dramatic -- much greater depth and more extended bottom end.
I must have heard the 802s on a bad system because everyone else seems to like them. My head hurt terribly after about 25 minutes. It was one of the most fatigueing set ups i had ever heard, which i blamed on the speakers. I must admit though the upper frequencies were incredibly clear and free from grain. The bass however was amost non existant. I must have heard them in a poorly set up system - Ian
I have owned my 802N for more than a year. I have not heard the 804s much but I really like my 802s. However I agree with many of the comments above. a) with the 802s plan on upgrading your amplification to more power or bi-amping them. I had the Krell KAV300i and it could not handle them. I now run them with the FPB200c and one day will bi-amp them b) for my ears a good subwoofer does help them sound better. I run a Velodyne sub with mine. c) these speakers will reveal any weaknesses in your system. Every upgrade in cables for example has been easy to assess. d) If you're like me the 802s can be a love/hate thing because they make you want to constantly upgrade. They do not help an already nasty addiction.
Hmm...I too would consider the 803s IF you can sit far enough back from them to get good coherence. I couldn't.
Frankly, I'd swap out the 804s for the Revel Performa F30 if nearfield listening is required. Otherwise get the 803 and forget adding the sub. The 803 produces PRODIGIOUS bass, and has a far better balanced frequency response in most rooms than the 804's anemic bottom end.
I recently listened to the proAc .5. It at least approached the open, clear , sound of the 804's with bass. Ribbon tweeter, 3 way design. Only needs 100-150 watts so NuVista is overkill. For 6K this speaker was the way to go for smaller room without big $$ on amplification
I think 801 and 802 are very different from the rest of the matrix line. Get the 802 if you can afford it. The sensitivity should be very similar to the 804.

If I had to choose, I rather get an 805 than an 804.