Help with speakers in 1500- 2000 range

Am just getting started on a system and am not going with seperates. Have decided to buy Arcam Avr 100 receiver and would like input on speakers, that would go well with it. Have read threads where people say " these speakers really like tubes," so want some that the arcam can bring out good sound in. Have heard b&w 805's as well as cdm1nt and cdm7nt, and medowlark sheerwaters. Thought the 805's sounded good with the arcam. The sheerwaters sounded good as well but they are more expensive and they were being driven by seperates. Thanks for any input.
Go to and check out the Diva line.You wont be sorry!
In that price range, my first choice would be the Maggie 1.6. This is a very musical loudspeaker. I have a friend who drives her baby Maggies with a small Arcam integrated, and the synergy is quite good. I am not familiar with the Avr 100 receiver, but if it is in the 100 watt per channel range (as I'm guessing) then it should work well with the Maggies. Maximum volume will be limted as compared to a dynamic speaker, of course. But economic considerations preclude box speakers in that price range from sounding truly boxless, and it's those little boxy artifacts that remind you you're not listening to live music. The Maggie 1.6's aren't perfect, but sound less like loudspeakers than their competition.
H-m-m-m, first question is, are you only looking at new, or
will good condition used/demo/b-stock etc. work? If so, you have a whole lot more choices. Some more models in your range to check out: Vandersteens are more boxless than most, and the 2CE Signatures(Class B, Stereophile Budget component winner)will mate well with the Arcam. My own Vandy's(Model 1's)have been hooked up with success even to a lowly NAD, let alone 100 watts of Arcam fron end. The 2's have a more cohesive tonal balance, and will be more muscial AND forgiving than a lot of alternates. A pair of used Vandersteen 3's will generally fall in your range, and are well worth grabbing. The Arcam will just about fit the bill on these, although a tad more amperage would be even better. Hales will work OK with the Arcam as well, but try to find some used.
The Diva's mentioned above are a good bang for the buck, and reasonably efficient to boot.
The 1.6 Maggies are incredible, but like all Maggie's will take all the power you can give them. Kind of like Thiels, which I would probablynot mate with your Arcam.
There are some decent used deals on Acoustats and the slightly more troublesome Apogees out there. The hybrids may work well, although the full ribbons might be a tricky
match. Newform Acoustics is one of the easier loads if you are looking at ribbon magic. Highly recommended - you will notice they hardly ever come up on the used market, but they have good models around $ 2K.
Have fun!
$1250-1500 Meadowlark Audio Kestrel and Kestrel Hot Rod
$2000 Audio Physic Spark III
The Sparks are Gorgeous and sound fantastic. A note to be sure to budget an extra few hundred for very good stands if you are thinking about monitors, B&W etc... I like the smaller floor standers you get some nice bass and you don't have to shell out for expensive hunks of steel to put them on. These speakers are also very easy to drive.
Go with used speakers, that is my best suggestion.
I have auditioned the Shearwaters and the 805s but like you with different front ends. The 805s also had a subwoofer in the system. I had a chance to audition the Shearwaters at home for a week with an Audiomat Arpege(integrated tube) and am in the process of buying that combo. I have found this combo to present mids and highs beautifully. Acoustic guitar is wonderful. Jazz is great also. I found rock to be missing abit at the bottom end. However the system I used had limited hours on it and supposedly the bass will fill in. Everything I have heard or read( about the Shearwaters tells me it take awhile them to break-in. They sound so nice new however that I have decided to go ahead. I auditioned the Hot Rod version(biwired). and links to reviews in/on
Also search for postings in
The R630 or R645 are worth checking out.
The bad news is lead time, backordered till may, so instant gratification is out of the question.
I think I saw a pair of R630's used on Audiogon for around a grand if they are still there, the 645's were sold the first time I even saw the listing!. Of course, at $ 2245 delivered new for the 645's(more efficient, better bass) you
can't go wrong. They may not have the highest SAF, but who cares when they sound that good. Not much in this range that will do more magic, and still like your non-tube integrated.
Also look for a used pair($ 3,500 new) of Dyanudio 1.3 SE
monitors. Incredible. I was clued into these by someone at
Sim Audio(who should know, don't you think?) The reviews on AudioReview and elsewhere back him up. Let us all know what you decide on, and how it works out. May great music always come your way!
Try Proac 1sc's. "They love tubes"
A second on the Maggie 1.6 & Vandersteens. Also, the Apogee Stage can be had for ~$800-1000 with the stands and have enough money left over for a good sub. If you are into moving heavy objects, you can try the Apogee Slant 6 dynamic/ribbon hybrid (~$800)and for the real weight lifter, the Apogee Slant 8 (~$1500), also a dynamic/ribbon hybrid. Good luck!
Thanks to everyone for the input. After a lot of research and auditioning, decided to buy a Sim Moon I-5 integrated amp and a pair of Gershman Acoustic Avant Garde speakers. Stretched my budget but the sound is just incredible and I got a very good price. Thanks again.