Dunlavy SC IVa or B&W 802

if there are available for $4,000, which should I get for jazz, classical, sometimes movies for Musical Fidelity dual monoblock A3.2 version.
I would go with the Dunlavy's , they will be a little easier to drive with your small mono's..
They also sound very good if you have atleast a room size of about 14x14 and some up...
Good Luck,
Sorry, i forgot to say you could also look at the B&W 803's that would also sound quite nice with your amps..
The Dunlavy's though for the money will be hard to beat..
Good luck,
These speakers require a large room to be effectively setup. Preferably on the long wall. You need at least 10'++ of separation distance for these speakers. Plus some room from the side walls.

Even though your amp will drive them, the SC-IVa's will not reach their full potential on that kind of power. As with any speaker, large amps always bring out the best in dynamics.

Also, since Dunlavy is out of business, be careful if you should need replacement drivers. May be very difficult to find.
Badam, The vifa speakers in Dunlavy's can be replaced and closely matched up.. They are several places that sell them in U.S. and are made in Denmark.. Just enter vifa speaker under Yahoo and you will find quite a few.. There is some dealers that could also test them to match very close to any bad or defective woofer you may have in future.. And yes the speakers to sound right do require some room .. They should also be placed at least 3 ft. from back walls.. Mr. Dunlavy said a room of approximately 14x14(15x15) and up for this model.. They will sound even more impressive with more power also, but the Musical Fidelity 3.2's will still sound pretty nice with them.. I have heard these speakers run fine with fairly low amounts of power.. It will not take alot to start driving Dunlavy's , but about 175 to 200 wpc is great.. The B&W will require more power for them to sound really good.. The Musical Fidelity amps would not be a good match for them at all i believe..Like i said before though i think the B&W 803's would be a good match or you could Consider the Dunlavy Athena's or Cantata's which would take up less room then the SC-IVa's..
I don't know your room size , so just trying to cover all possible options with the two types of speakers your interested in..
the room, or rooms, that I have is 500-600sf of living and dinning together, open plan with vaulted ceiling in the living room where my system is.
Badman, With the type of room your describing the Dunlavy's should sound awesome.. You might want to later consider more power though do to size of room, but for now the small monos will do fine. Just think of it as a upgrade later to make the Dunlavy sound even more impressive..
Good Luck,
Dunlavy SC IVa!
No competition in my mind. Dunlavy! As a matter of fact, I have watched the prices of the Dunlavy IVa and V models since they closed the doors. The first two years showed a small reduction in resale value, but now they have risen above the prices when they were in business. In fact I can sell mine for what I paid new! It will be a very cold day in ^%#* before another speaker beats the Dunlavy at the same price. Sad that John Dunlavy ran out of gas, he was a true genius at creating great performance/price speakers.
I switched from N802's to SCIV-A's and haven't regretted it for a second....
Another vote for Dunlavy IVA. They can compete with big boys.
I think the above guys should be enough but I'd have to agree. The Dunlavy's sound better, period. Of course that's my opinion but for the money they're very good speakers. Your room will work fine.
I listened to SCIVa in 2 different system, 2 different size rooms. No offense to Dunlavy owners, but both times one thing that stood out was lack of bass. The detail was there but the punch wasn't. May be good just for classical music but no rock or jazz sounded good. I attempted to listen to SRV Tin Pan Alley, which sounded very sweet and clean, but lacked bass. Diana Krall Love Scenes sounded OK, but still light on bass. I ended up with B&W N803. If you want bass impact, go for the B&Ws. In any case, trusting your own ears is a better way to choose speakers. If you have a chance, audition before buying. Also, if you can find a used pair of B&W 803D, this will be a better choice than both the SCIVa and N802. IMHO.
i compared dunlavys to the 801n and the dunlavys smoked em. I second the vote for athenas or cantatas. they are supposedly easier to get dialed in to the room than the IVs (never tried to set up IV's). I have a pair of athenas and i can't really see ever getting rid of them. the speaker face is about 3 ft off the rear wall so they don't intrude much into the room. long wall placement is a must to get the best results. they rivaled or beat everything i listened to at prices several times their list cost.

It depends which 802 your talking about. I own the B&w 802D and they are a completely different speaker from the Nautilus line. Don't let the similar looks fool you. The changes made to the new 800 series have been fantastic. Haven't heard the Dunlavys but love the 802D's.

In the end it really matters what equipment you hear the speakers with.
thanks everybody. One thing concerns me about Dunlavy's is the overwhelming size of them.
How big is your room?
Maybe it's just me, but, when I think of speaker size I tend to limit the process to footprint, stability and required distance from surrounding walls and to the listening position.
both are reference, but the dunlavy's are 'classic'.
The most amazing thing about the Dunlavy is the fact that once they are dialed in (not a simple feat) those monsters simply disappear! I still sit in amazement how nothing appears to come from the two 6' behemoths sitting in my room. Very cool!
I fully agree with JD. Once you get the Dunlavys set up properly, they throw an amazing three dimentional sound stage. In my room, they have bested speakers costing 6 times as much. At their current prices, these speakers are a steal. Do youself a favor and jump on them.

By the way, we use our Dunlavy Vs for movies as well and we never miss the center channel.
curious how people have their IV-A's or V's set up and in what room sizes....I have my IV-A's about 11 feet apart and toed in a bit, listening position is around 12.5 feet away. Room is 20x23x10.5
The room is 17'-6" x 13'-4" x 8'-0". I have set the speakers on the long wall as recommended by the speaker manufacturer. The tweeters are placed 2'-8" (approx. 1/5 the 13'-4" dim.) out from the front wall and 3'-11" (a min. of 1/3 greater than the front wall) from the side walls. This means they are 9'-8" apart and the speakers are toed at 31 ½ degrees. My head is set 4'-5"(approx. 1/3 the 13'-4" dim.) from the back wall which in turn leaves my ears at 8'-0" from the tweeters. This is a bit more "near field" than what is usual, but the recommended alternative of my head against an acoustic panel on the back wall is not possible in my room.

This one's easy...there is no question about it, Dunlavy's are accurate in time and phase and reproduce accurately the signal fed them by the partnering amplifier.

This is an exceptional, albeit out of production, speaker.

Check out the step response of B&W. Why would anyone want a speaker that inverts part of the harmonic content of the signal fed to it?
Stevecham: You bring up an excellent question. In fact I think most speakers have some speakers wired out of phase. I too prefer the sound of speakers with first order networks and listen to Vmps. Before these I owned Vandersteen. The reality though is that most people do listen to speakers that have harmonic content inverted.
Warnerwh, I know and I have studied and compared this through extensive listening with friends' systems and at shows for years. I have also owned KEF, Dynaudio and Paradigm, while good products, are unacceptable to me compared to Thiel, Vandersteen, Dunlavy and Meadowlark. I can hear the difference these designs make. From a purely common sense standpoint, it confounds me that more designers don't spend the time and effort to achieve this level of harmonic accuracy. And I realize that the VAST majority of speakers manufactured are simply inaccurate in this regard. I'm not a disciple of Richard Hardesty, though I do think he raises some excellent points, for me it's simply a matter of what I can hear. For me, accuracy of timbre, even if it makes a crummy recording sound as crummy as it really is, is most important.
My room is 32' X 26' 8" with cathedral ceilings going from 10 ' to 23'. The speakers are currently set up along the 32' wall on the 10' ceiling. The front of the speakers are 42" oc from the back wall. They are 12' 8.5" oc apart dead center on the 32 foot wall. The speakers were toed in using a laser pointed directly center 18' 9.5' from the 32' wall. In the best seat you ears are about 17' from the 32' wall. The sound stage is good for up to 3 listeners. It is acceptable in most of the room.
I really appreciate everybody responded, I have a guy selling Dunlavy SCIVA for about $3,600 in new condition. I guess I'd better go and audition them. I'm one of those that sticks to a good thing for a long time. I've had my Speakerlab super 7's for 12 years now,(with 12" and 10" three-way four-drivers version), and it's hard to replace them. They are not well known speakers, but at low volumes they sound so good(MF-A3.2cr as 2ch) for jazz and classical.