I own Druids and they are the finest speaker I have heard in 30 years of audio. Can't tell you anything about the other 2 you mentioned but if they have crossovers in them then skip them and buy the Druids. You'll never look back.
Whatever you do don't simply buy the flavor of the month Zus. Listen to them first yourself, every real verifiable person I know that has heard them including myself didn't think much of them.
>>every real verifiable person I know that has heard them including myself didn't think much of them<<
That seems to run contrary to most verifiable people in this forum.
I own both the Druids (4 years) & the Definitions (Almost 2 years). I really enjoy both. If you have a chance to listen to them first, great. If you don't Zu does have a money back gaurantee if you are not satisfied. The only thing you will be out is the shipping.
Just because they finally have gotten some credible recognition from known reviewers, doesn't give the right to be declaied as the "Flavor of the month".
Well Mechans, I'm a real verifiable person whose been in this audio game for over 30 years, and I've never heard a more transparent or musical loudspeaker than the Zu Druid at anywhere close to it's price. I consider the Zu to be a steal. Nonetheless, choosing speakers is as personal as picking your girlfriend, so Lightfla, you're just going to have to listen to all three and decide for yourself.
I'll tell you this for sure, the customer service from Zu is unequalled. They truly are concerned with your satisfaction. Contact Zu for a free 30 or 60 day trial.
Don't Know about Druids, but ZU will be flavor of the Decade if they keep going, cause they blow everything out of the water between 1500.00 & 10000.00
How does one become verifiable? What on earth does that mean?
There are a goodly number of posters on here who love their Zus.
For sure Zu Druids polarize alot of strong reactions for and against. Amphions have a below midrange XO point. Dali IKON6 best bang for buck kind of speaker. Ive never listened to Athenes, Dali or Druids. Have listened to other Amphion speakers in the real world price range and would like a bit more bass foundation. Owned maggies and gershman acoustics avantgardes. Small to med room. 60 wpc tube integrated will be used. Would like to hear from folks who have heard Athenes / Ikons too. Just not the Zu crowd.
The autoresponse knockers get boring after awhile.
Zu offers a FREE 60 day home trial. You don't have to buy before you decide. See if the other speaker manufacturers will offer you the same deal.
Listen, then make your decision.
I enjoy the lively discussion.
Anyone in southern Florida willing to audition any of the mentioned loudspeakers? Fort Lauderdale here. Reluctant to spend a fortune on gear, since who knows what next Hurricane season will bring ;)
If you want to know about Amphion vs. Zu, call Walter Swanbon at Fidelis AV in New Hampshire. He has a pair of Druids and he carries Amphion, or at least did.
Amphion and Dali, which I've heard, are good speakers if compared to the realm of conventional dynamic speakers with crossovers. The first thing the incoming signal hits is a resistor-capacitor-coil network, and until you hear a speaker that eliminates that while avoiding the shout and atonality of most other high-efficiency full-range speakers, the claims of us Zu owners might seem abstract. If you had all three speakers sequentially, Zu Druids last, odds are you could never go back to Dali, Amphion or anything else like them.
I've been a fully verifiable person for almost 52 years. My Mom thought I was verifiable when I was fighting my way into this world, and I'v been able to make my impressions along the way since, to become verifiable to others. I also have long-standing audio industry friendships from some time I put into the industry 30 years ago. So I not only hear about a LOT of gear, I actually hear it.
I own Druids and Defintions and that was after hearing various Amphions and Dalis and lots of other speakers in a 5 year investigation of what my next step should be.
Now, it's certainly possible for someone, perhaps even you, to hear Zu speakers and not think much of them. But I've never actually seen, touched, smelled or heard such a person in any verifiable way. That said, anytime two people are listening to the same music, the commentary inevitably leads to moments of wonder (as in consternation) about the other person's ears.
Thanks for your remarks. I consider myself verifiable in a number of areas and actually can "hear" as well. Of course in other areas I might even be considered certifiable. Its amazing how strongly Zu seems to polarize thoughts impressions and feelings. Someone locally who went to the latest CES heard the Druids and came away not being overly impressed. He is actually someone's opinion I value as being fair and a straightshooter. I also know listening environs at shows are not always the best. Perhaps the speakers werent fully broken in . I tend however to form my own opinions at the end of the day. Thanks again. Hard to break away from my planars.
I just bought Dali 6. Big soundstage, natural, sounding speakers. It needs 60 ours to brake in.
Probably this is the best speakers for the money.
They sound better then my previous Dynaudio, s52(special edition), and B&W 805s.
Were the Dali 6 speakers you purchased the IKONs? If you did any comparison listening with other speakers, would you mind sharing your opinion on how each of those compared?
Yes I bought Dali Ikon 6 from dealer in California.
I use to have Dynaudio 52S and before that I had B&W 805.
805 was too dry. Dynaudio was very good and more musical.
The Dali Ikon 6 is the same price and is easier to drive has more base(tighter), more air and overall the sound is real and plesure to listen. You should check it.
According two a dealer in Los Angeles who has 35 years in the audio video business Dali speakers are the best in the world for the money. And I agree with him. They are not popular in USA but in Europe are a big name.
Does the Dali Ikon 6 sound okay with a solid state amp? I have an NAD C372 integrated. Also, can someone who has one tell me how much you paid for it? Thanks in advance.
Just heard the Amphion Argons and have a pair of Zu Tones on home audition. At the moment anyway, I'd give the Argons the nod on voices -- more transparent and open, though the Zu folks tell me that my Tones need more time, and the slight thickness I hear in the mids will take care of itself.
The Argons are very nice, though I did hear some timing discontinuities that you don't hear w/the Tones -- they have a really inviting dynamic flow. Am inclined to keep them if the midrange issue I hear fades, they have a lot of strengths. I would, however, ignore all claims of 'blowing away anything in their price range', etc. These are silly statements as there are obviously a lot of talented speaker designers out there. There are, for example, things I like about my VMPS speakers better than the Zu's.
Incidentally, Zu is far from the first speaker to have no crossover to a driver. Epos has done this for years, w/a simple circuit to include the tweeter, others have/do as well.
It is certainly true that many manufacturers have experimented with elimination of the crossover from their speakers. There have been varying degrees of success but the fact that many attempt it seems to validate the claim that crossovers are best avoided.
Where I feel Zu surpasses previous efforts is in the bandwidth of their midrange driver.
If your Tones have fewer than 200 hours on them, you can certainly look for improvement as they loosen up. I have no experience with the Tone itself but the issue is really with the mid range driver which is the same as the one in my Druids. They improved steadily for months with daily use.
Agreed it is a heckuva driver. I am a little nervous though in that I'm not fully happy w/the midrange transparency and my 60 days will be up soon. Am trying to amp up the break-in.
I'm less sold that crossovers are best eliminated. Certain kinds of transducers might be best for different frequency ranges. Ribbons for highs and mids, dynamic drivers for lower tones, for ex. In this scenario, a crossover is obviously required. I have, experientially and without intention over the last 20 years of listening, found that I like designs w/first order slopes, and don't like those w/fourth order slopes. They sound flat and lacking in flow to me and I've owned some highly regarded ones. Maybe this is the cost of hacking up the signal so much to accomodate the drivers
Anyway, my point is that it's all a tradeoff and comes down to personal taste. There are obvious advantages to a single driver doing most of the work. I'll be happy to be wrong, but I suspect my VMPS RM40s with their ribbon mids are always going to sound cleaner w/voices to my ears than the Tones.
As an aside, another standmount I've heard recently that I really like is the Aurum Cantas Volla. And hey, I believe it uses a third order slope.
Call Zu and ask for an extension. I'm pretty sure they'll give you another 30 days. It's not without precedent.
Then it's up to you to play them long and loud. Break in is a pain but the reward is significant.
I'll try that, thanks. Want to love 'em, but there is w/o question a noticeable lack of clarity at the moment w/vocals -- they sound a little 'thick'.
Rblnr: Can't you leave them playing all the time, specially when you are away? You don't have to be present listening to a driver being broken in. With 10 hours/day, it should take 10-15 days at most.
And, don't be afraid to put big juice through them. Those drivers are stiffies and will never break in unless you play them at uncomfortable levels. Translation - do the heavy lifting when you're not home.
Having owned Druids and Def's, I speak from experience. This driver is sublime with vocals, so I'd guess you have some watts to put through the speakers.
>>With 10 hours/day, it should take 10-15 days at most<<
With many speakers I would tend to agree with you. In my experience it matters as much, if not more, with how loud the Zu speakers are driven as it does with the number of hours; although I would not make any critical evaluation of the speakers until you've reached a minimum of 200 hours.
I'm not sure that 10 hours/day for 15 days at high SPL is particularly conducive to matrimonial harmony.
I've done some of that and will do more. The folks at Zu will grant me a few more weeks if I need it.