High End Monitors

I am moving my system to a room in my new home which is a lot smaller thanthan my current set up. My new room is simply too small to house my Wilson Sophias. What suggestions would people have for a standmount speaker? I have listened to the Dynaudio C1s and found them to not be to my taste. I have listened to the Talon ravens and liked them a lot-- found them to be very transparent-- but they are costly. I intend to listen to the new Monitor Audio PL100 and the usher Tiny Dancer. Any other suggestions? Has anyone listened to the Escalante Pinyons without a sub? Eben XCentric? I would like to stay under $5k used or new. My musical tastes run to acoustic folk and rock with 33% symphonic. I am not a bass freak but really enjoy speakers that do the disappearing act, not one of the Sophia's strengths. Other pieces: Act2, Primare A32 amp, Marantz SA11. new cabling will come with the new room. Thanks for the input.
I'd expect that right now, it's a buyer's market if you have any interest in the JM Lab Micro Utopia Be, since the replacement model is here.
Tell us why you didnt like the C1s...one of the best in class at that price point
I have mentioned how much I like the Monitor Audio PL100s several times in other threads. I would highly recommend them. Especially if you can find them used.

Just my $.02

I agree with Phaelon! The JMLab/Focal Micro Utopia BE is a fantastic sounding speaker. I heard them in a friends system and it was the best disappearing act I've ever heard. I'm a fan of acoustic folk, singer-songwriter and rock music, he is a classcal aficionado. We both thought they were fantastic!


How about an active speaker setup like the NHT active's? Should give you a tremendous dynamic advantage and lack of coloration from no passive crossover, and good parts usage. I think they are like $8k with subwoofer, but cheaper used. Anyway, they're small, highly rated in Stereophile (Class A restricted???).
Otherwise, used, Revel Gem's, Wilson Cub's, Merlin VSM's (using a Rives PARC to EQ for your small room), Piega's, yada, yada, and similar smaller, freq restricted designs.
For other passive's, your gunna have to fish here....

That NHT Xd system is on sale here on AudiogoN for only $2999 brand new, including sub. I haven't heard it, but I would like to hear what it could do.....


the reason i did not like the C1s was that I found them to be pretty but not involving. i think as i am moving away from an all tube system i am wanting more detail and transparency. t
The KCS SEAS exotic looks very interesting...I have not heard them but bet they are real good
i am wanting more detail and transparency.
..which I think also describes the Sophias, have you considered the Wilson Duettes?
Disclaimer: I sell them, but not trying to sell you a pair....just suggesting that you listen to a pair of Lipinski 707's if possible.

Active or passive ATC SCM20's will be involving and yet still sound natural and transparent with a tight punchy bass (no one note boominess like you sometimes get in a ported speaker like the C1). If you like the artists to be in the room with you then this may work for you but you may find the bass to thin depending on what "sound" you have become accustomed too (Wilsons are known for their bass hump - just look at any frequency plot)
I recently reviewed the Verity Audio Parsifal Ovation Monitors (and whole speaker)...

I thought they were fantastic and you will always have the upgrade path by adding the base/bass cabinet should you circumstances change in the future.

The nearest well known competitor of the VA Ovation monitors I thought would be the Sonus Faber Gunarrai Hommage, but just not as "warm".

I would certainly give these speakers a listen, John
Lipinski 707's if possible

FWIW - Bob Katz of Chesky fame loves them. Well worth an audition. Definitely "High End" and not your regular fare.
One of the most transparent monitors I have heard is the S7 made by High Emotion Audio. Right now we are listening to the P7, which took longer to break in, but seems to work as well.

They both feature one of the fastest and most accurate tweeters in the industry, for which they have at least 2 patents pending. They are very honest to 40Hz.

They are equally easy to drive with tubes or transistors, and our amps drive them effortlessly.
i recently reviewed the mark and daniel maximus monitor.
using a modified heil air motion tweeter and a cone bass driver, the cabinet was surprisingly non obtrusive.

it is worth a listen.
Hey Teeshot, are Direct brands with a money back option something you'd consider? If so I'd humbly suggest the BPT Cirrus - http://www.b-p-t.com/speakers.html

I have to qualify, I'm the person who builds them. They were incredibly well received at RMAF this year. They're truly a Reference Monitor, and are a value that's going to be impossible to beat.

Enjoy, Ryan
The Proac D2s and a high mass stand Work great with the Primare amps
Having been paired at UK shows they perform great together.
Cheers Johnnyr
I have heard the Escalante Design Pinyons both with, and without a subwoofer. I actually have a pair in one of my systems. The overall sound is better than the Talons (not surprising, since they were designed by the same person - but the Pinyons represent a significant refinement in the sound from the earlier speaker), and there is no boom or 'overload' at the bass frequencies. The transparency is first rate, and there is an abundance of detail as well. Imaging is excellent, but to me, the dynamic range and lack of compression exhibited by the Pinyons really put the icing on the cake. If you can find a used pair within your budget, do so.
Harbeths SLH5's. I owned these for about 2 years and enjoyed every minute with them. They will fit your price range new. Easy to drive. Very musical. Great on acoustic and classical. If you haven't heard the Harbeth line you owe it to listen before making a purchase.