I asked before about the 803d vs the Martin Logan Spire but my question should have been what is the best speaker for vocals? I have Klipsch RF-7s and they have a great lively sound but I do feel like the midrange is a bit hollow at times. What are opinions on a speaker that is known for its midrange? I listen to David Gray, Avett Brothers, Ben Harper, etc. I want the most realistic vocals. I have read that Harbeth Super HL5 may be the ticket but it is not full range and there is no matching center.
Eminent technology 8b's You have to like the looks and have the right amp to drive them, but they sound tremendous with vocals. They are also one of the best bang for buck speakers on the market. Have heard some of the ML speakers (not the spire). The MLs tend to sound a little hollow in the mids to my ears - not fleshed out enough, great detail though. The B*W speakers tend to sound a little too forward for my taste. You have very different speakers mentioned about. Stats, (planers - Em. Tech) Horns - Klips, and cone speakers -B&W all have there strengths and weaknesses. Decide which category of speaker sound you like best and go in that direction.
Full range electrostatics, particularly the larger Sound Labs, do this best. The range of the human voice is such that having absolute coherence (the entire sound coming from one driver) is extremely important for realism. Full range electrostatic speakers (not hybrids) are unequaled in this respect.
Everyone's " the best speakers for vocals" will end up being "the best speakers", which tends to get messy.
Personally, I think one of the great things about vocals are the nuances of a singer controlling his or her voice - how the singer manages diction, decay, or pitch change (either a fade or a break), and other things at the edge of music. These factors are part and parcel of a singer's artistry and to hear all the nuances one may need sensitive speakers. Large horn speakers do it for me.
The Harbeth's are pretty darn good for voice. If you wanted to make a change to a different speaker that excels on voice but might be a bit more full range I would look at the Merlin VSM-MXe which for my taste the best speaker I have heard if you don't have a huge room or play 20Hz synth notes.
Vocals are one of the main types of music I listen to. The speakers for my primary system are the Verity Fidelio Encores, whose midrange and attendant crossover allow for an incredibly musical and lifelike presentation. My secondary system is almost as enjoyable; it has the Sonus Faber Cremona Auditor M's. Not as accurate as the Verity's, but still very, very good.
I agree that "best for vocals" could easily be just "best speaker" but I have read great things about the 803d as an overall speaker but is is often criticized for its recessed vocals. The RF-7 is a 2 way so I assume that the 803d would be an improvement in the midrange (3 way) but many people say that the 803d can sound recessed with male vocals. I listen to primarily singer/songwriter so this is unacceptable.
Room size is 15 x 18 with vaulted ceilings, i am using a Juicy Music Peach II preamp and B&K 200.2 amp. I sit about 10-12 feet back and the RF-7s are about 8 feet apart. Overall the sound is very good but I am always looking for improvements and I think the speakers would be the next logical move.
What are opinions on a speaker that is known for its midrange?
Quad esl 57 Harbeth ATC
are all well known for midrange quality.
I want the most realistic vocals. I have read that Harbeth Super HL5 may be the ticket but it is not full range and there is no matching center.
The large Quad's are hardly practical for HT and lack the dynamics so IMHO you should definitely check out ATC. Many of the movies that you buy (Hollywood productions) will have been done on ATC's anyway. The ATC midrange is roughly 30 years old but it is still in demand by clients in world class new facilities. The fact they buy a thirty-something year-old midrange design speaks volumes.
I would add that "best" is still very much a matter of taste and some like ATC and some don't. So make sure you audition.
Maybe merlin's monitors or floor standers could fit your requirements;excellant speakers. Also a used pair of dunlavy scIII's,IV's, or V's might work. Last what about a different amp;like a moscode hr401 (hybrid)?
Any speaker made by Von Schweikert is great on vocals but also huge soundstage, pristine non-fatiguing highs and tight, powerful bass; integration of drivers mimics the ideal single driver point source. Go hear them if you get the chance.