HELP Best speakers btw 1000$ and 3000$. Real tests

anybody here have compared the Eminent technology LFT-16a (1000$) to other speakers like psb mini etc...

that planar push pull midrange with no crossover btw 250hz and 7.5kz is really really keeping me from looking elsewhere right now.... the others i'm looking at are ERAudio electrostatics mini panel(500$+shipping from autralia, but need sub and matching amp) or evolutions acoustics MMicroOne :)

the amps that i'm interested in right now in order are musical paradise mp-501 kt120 paralllel single ended no negative feedback tube amp (1300$), parasound a23 (1000$), bryston b60r (700$)...

for dac i'm looking into schiit gungnir (750$ without usb) or musical paradise MP-D1 with usb (550$ + better tube (30$)) (tube stage with AK4399 dac)
I really need advise please anybody :)

lets say btw 1000-3000$ for the speakers less $$$ is better
btw 400 and 1400$ for the amp less $$ is better
btw 500 and 1000 for the dac less $$ is better...

in total i dont want to go over 3500$ and i don't mind if i need to upgrade later some parts like the amp.

If i choose lets say the evolutions acoustics mmmicroone at 2500$.. i will of course buy a lower cost 400$ amp and maybe wait for the dac..
please anybody??
Fritz speakers
How big is your room? What types of music do you listen to? Are you going to use these for home theater too? Are you going to use a subwoofer?
Are you located in a major city where you can listen to some speakers?
I own the Vapor Breeze speakers which can be had for $1300 plus shipping . It is an amazing speaker!!!,which is a fantastic value, and can compete with speakers costing way more. Check out Vapor Audio site for more info. I run my speakers with a 75 watt Onkyo 9555a.
Tekton speakers also have some fantastic reviews . The Micro Ones are supposed to be fantastic as well, but cost $1200 more than the Breeze.
I'm going to have to say the Tekton Design Lore-S for $1399/pr would be my first choice. They also make the standard Lore for a larger room at around $1000/pr that has a 10-inch main driver as opposed to the 8-inch high-quality Seas driver in the Lore-S.

Either speaker sounds really good driven by a 30 to 50 watt/channel tube amp. If you're in a small to medium room an EL-34 based amp like a Jolida, Primaluna, or Rogue Audio may work. I'm using a QuickSilver GLA amp with excellent results and there are many more of these types of tube amps to choose from. You may even find a nice little integrated tube model in your budget. Anyway, that's what I'd get.
If you like the sound of planer speakers but don't want to deal with any of negatives that come along with them, like me, you can't go wrong with a pair of Vandersteen's. For $2000 you can get a pair of Model 2's. The big advantage is that you get the whole frequency range. You don't have to settle for mediocre bass and highs to get a great midrange. No planar speaker that I've ever heard can do what the Vandersteen's do.

You shouldn't take my word for it, though. Your really need to hear them (or any other speakers that you are considering) for your self.
Those tekton lore s's are $1300 per pair, or $2600 per pair? Those and the vapor audio's look saweeet!
I second the tekton recommendation and will also throw the Gallo Classicos into the suggetsion pile. Both companys make great speakers that are excellent calue. And both have in-home trial periods. Why not avail yourself of these options?

wow thanks guy for the swift replies... i'm gonna check all of those..

I'm not interested in big bass extension but the best sound from 50hz to 30hz hehehe :)

low to midbass + midrange resolution are what is the more important for me.. while highfreq is also important..

of course 3d imaging, good soundstage, transparent, good crossover parts, etc...

I was also interested in the king sound princess II (electrostatic tweet)

I was interested in the gallo classico too seem nice..

I'll look into the Fritz,tekton,vapor audio, Vandersteen model 2

anybody compared any model in those listing in this post or some better for the same price?

The problem i see with most speakers is the crossover in the midrange... don't you feel this way too???

Anybody know a good speakers that is time and phase aligned??? I guess KEF LS50 would be one

at least, i think that with crossover points at 250hz and 7.5hz, phase and time alignement will be less important...

i guess the 250hz is still important tho.. if it's not time aligned and phase coherant (the lft-16a phase accuracy spec is

+-20 degree btw 100Hz-31kHz

those speakers will be use mostly for nearfield.. my room will be well padded and its something like 5meters by 10meters but i don't mind if it doesn't fill the room... line source would be better anyway if i wanted to fill the room.. (something like mmmicroone with MTM would be awesome too)

anybody have heard about the musical paradise dacs and amps??? the 500 with KT120 seems to be the bomb.. most amp with kt120 are sold for a lot more $$ ..
With the caveat that people in threads like this will tend, naturally, to recommend what they own or have owned, if you're interested in the coherence of time/phase aligned speakers, look into either the Reference 3A Dulcet or De Capo. Used, either one should fit into your price range. New, you could swing the Dulcet. I've owned both and they are very sweet. Both are essentially "crossoverless" designs, with only a capacitor to protect the tweeter, and both have mirror imaged pairs and slanted front baffles to aid in time coherence. Worth a listen. There's also the Green Mountain Audio Rio II.
thx rebbi, ill check those out too.. your really sure they are phase aligned?
sorry, I have not listened to some of the speakers listed here & some I have... ( don't want to start a fire ) but i have to put a plug here for the evolution micro ones. dollar for dollar & then some, you owe it to yourself to audition these. please reads the reviews, their praises are not to be ignored.
Phase aligned can mean many things. Linkwitz Riley 2nd and 4th order two ways are phase aligned in the crossover region by definition, even if the baffle is not time aligned. But LR2 system response requires the tweeter to be wired out of phase with the woofer in order to produce proper summation in the crossover region. Many folks prefer 2nd order systems for their more gradual overlap which can allow the drivers to be harder to identify as the music gets handed off from woofer to tweeter; a better blending of the sound.

Minimum phase system response is another matter altogether, and very difficult to achieve over the entire audible range with multi-way systems. A true first order crossover, one with 6dB/octave acoustic slopes over a couple octaves around the crossover can produce a minimum phase system response. But getting quality drivers with smooth response in the overlap region is a tall order.

If you look at the Reference 3A site, the line is described as "phase coherent," and the baffles are raked (and the tweeters offset) to allow for time alignment of the drivers. Whether the Reference 3A line is more phase and time coherent than other speakers I cannot say as I'm not a physics whiz and don't understand all the theory. Hope that helps a little.

Luvstolisten makes a point that I've heard elsewhere, that is, that 1st order crossovers require drivers that can cover a wide frequency range because the handoff "slope" between the drivers is not as gradual as higher-order designs. This is one reason that Ref 3A builds their own mid-bass drivers in house. In theory, they are able to work mechanical kinks out of the driver design through all kinds of mechanical tweaks, rather than having to compensate for driver misbehavior with crossover complexity. Hence also, a mid-bass driver directly coupled to the amplifier, and only a single capacitor to protect the tweeter.
Axiom M80 v3s, $1500 a pair.

"Minimum phase system response is another matter altogether, and very difficult to achieve over the entire audible range with multi-way systems. A true first order crossover, one with 6dB/octave acoustic slopes over a couple octaves around the crossover can produce a minimum phase system response. But getting quality drivers with smooth response in the overlap region is a tall order."

Very good description. Those type of speakers are extremely difficult to design. That's why I recommended Vandersteen in my first post. No one does it better. When I say that, though, I'm not implying that one has to like them. I'm just saying that they are the best at getting phase and time correct speakers right. Everyone has different tastes.
There are big tradeoffs going for the transient perfect designs. The biggest, in my opinion, is the rather poor power response that can result. Move off the design axis, and the transient perfect character disappears due to changing the distance to the acoustic centers of each driver. It's much easier to maintain a smooth off axis response using higher order filters.

Going beyond 4th order acoustic doesn't seem necessary unless pushing drivers close to their limits of usability (metal cones near their breakup modes for example.) My personal favorites are 2nd order 3-ways. They tend to offer seamless transition from driver to driver and allow reasonable control of out of band energy, allowing each driver to perform cleanly and without strain.
This might be a little off topic but for some reason I am having difficulty submitting a new thread.

Check out a no compromise digitally activated bookshelf for a silly price ($2,500) deputed at this years CES 2013. It really is a leave no stones left unturned approach to a desktop loudspeaker. The constrained layer damping and the drive units themselves already more than justify the price and its seems like the DSP, wireless connectivity, fully balanaced DAC topology with switchable filters and latest nCore inspired Hypex modules are thrown in for free. I really hope there are more details about the speakers such as the dimensions, digital connectivity on the website ( though.
I wouldn't mind if they release a flagship version of it in the future with bigger drivers and nCore amplification along with better styled cabinet.
Meridian better watch out! This speaker offers way better connectivity, DSP, drivers, dacs and similar cabinets at 1/3 of the price of your bookshelf offering!

I hope one day Magico will offer the option of wireless integrated no compromise speakers such as these. I have really taken a liking to Magico's all aluminum cabinets and cutting edge drive units but you can easily swap the expensive crossovers for a way superior DSP active implementation. I bet the amplification, DSP, DACs and wireless connectivity cost just as much if not lesser than the overbuilt crossovers in Magico loudspeakers. I find passive crossovers such a waste of resources! Good ones are so expensive and also so difficult to do right, and that is not to mention the electrical losses here.

What are your views on this? I am simply astounded at what is offered here. I have actually not seen anything like this and especially at this price!
"What are your views on this? I am simply astounded at what is offered here. I have actually not seen anything like this and especially at this price!"

I have not heard the Moos, but these look similar in concept and design (dsp, active, individual amps for each woofer and tweeter downstream of the dsp (direct connected to drivers)).
in the 2500$ range, i would personaly go for the evolution mmmicroone since it's a very narrow MTM design with 2 small woofer + AMT + time and phase coherant + nice design and box + mostly perfect sound proved on the web by so many reviewers.. the moo seem nice tho with scanspeak drivers... but i'm really leaning towards the ER audio 250hz to 20khz electrostatics minipanel + small line array of 2-3 small woofer acting as sub, if i can find the best woofers for the price that would match electrostatics..

Other option would be replacing my scanspeak 12mu on my diy 3way with B&G neo10, small accuton 2", ATC dome, dynaudio esotar 430 midrange.

The LFT 16a with planar mid at 1000$ similar to neo10 is clearly an interesting choice at the price but i wonder about performance compared to er-audio panel and b&g Neo10...

the AVI seem interesting but i saw soso review also on those even if most are very good..
I plan to absorb the backwave of the electrostatics or planar with a 2-3-4" rockwool panel that evenly absorb all freq over 250hz.. so this would equate in spacing the panel to 2-3 feet from the rear wall even if they are near the rockwool panel..withou
Anybody here heard both the mmmicroone and the KEF LS50??

I wonder btw both..
I am the proud owner (two weeks) of the EA MMMicroOnes. I must say that these are clearly the best speakers I have ever owned/listened to. I have been to audio shows and demos for many many brands over the past 35 years and have heard about every "great speaker" that has been bantered about on these forums. My personal evolution has included Dynaudio, Vienna Acoustics, Sonus Faber, Focal, Energy, Volent, Pioneer/TAD, Magnepan, & Martin-Logan. Like many of you I tend to shop in the $3-10K range and for amps $2-5K. I have heard speakers and systems up to $300K. so I know what is achievable in the market place.

I am using Jeff Rowland Model 112 Gorgeous!(150/8 and 285/4ohm). The synergy between these two is fantastic. I am hearing and experiencing the goose bumps like never before and the speakers are still breaking in! They are the best $12K monitor available for two grand! Air, speed transparency, depth, width, starling presence, and that undefinable quality that lets you "KNOW" your not just listening to just any speaker. It is hard to quantify,..... but you know it when you come across equipment that has it.

I also considered the Gamut Audio D200i, Modwright KWA 150SE or 200, and Pass Labs XA-150. I would not use less than 100 high current watts with these if you favor dynamics, air and transparency.

My opinion: ~ Not for Metal, Rap, Acid or Hard Rock either.

Highly recommended! If you get the opportunity to own or listen you should try to.

You are the only one who can choose for yourself. It is al about personal taste. Start with the loudspeaker you like most. After this focus on the amplification..
Someone on another forum said the Kef LS-50's when pared up with a Unison Research Simply Italy tube amp is hard to beat at...any price.


What kind of sound are you looking for, what kind of music do you listen to, how big is the room, and how loud do you expect things to go?

Hard to recommend anything without this info. Everything sounds different. If you've provided this info prior just reference the post date and I'll find it.

I attended the 2012 Newport Beach Audio Show and heard so many hifi-ish speakers there that I was actually relieved to get out of there. That being said, two very inexpensive and impressive small two-ways there were the Evolution Acoustics MMMicroOnes and Fritzspeakers. I ended up buying a pair of the EA speakers, and in my small room, they are the best I have heard, including some designs up to $40K. I highly recommend these two companies if you are looking for sonics that sound like real music being played and not some hifi-ish, fatiguing, punch-and-sizzle designs.
You might try the Salk SongTower with the Ribbon Tweeters.
You should seriously consider this package, for the price it's absolutely unbeatable. I only own the monitors and wouldn't trade them for anything at least three times the price if not more.

anybody compared the princess to the lft-16a to the ls50