Uberwaltz, Don't you hate it when that happens? You bring something in for an audition and you end up keeping both, because both are really good at what they do, and what each piece uniquely does is something you can't bring yourself to do without. I've heard the Josephs, but not the Gibbons. The Josephs are fine speakers and I can understand you not finding it easy to give them up. I've never auditioned a DeVore speaker, but doing so is on my audio bucket list.
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Nice review uberwaltz.
Personally I wouldn't be keeping a speaker that had to be played that loud (Josephs) to sound good to me, as I generally don't listen that loud.
But if you do listen that loud, then, I guess they fit the bill.
(I like the Joseph Perspectives/Pulsars, which do appreciate a bit of goosing of the volume, but not that much necessary).
I get stuck all the time between speakers that do different things that I love. Hence, I end up keeping multiple speakers. I auditioned the Joseph Perspectives in my home and loved what they did great, but also loved what the speakers I owned did great, so I couldn't let go of my speakers and thought I'd save up and add the Josephs.
It's a curse.
Guys, it’s more than a curse, it’s a sick addiction ... Lol.
Maybe I was a bit over critical of the Joseph’s lower spl performance. I think if I did not have the Gibbons here to compare I may not have been as struck by it.
Listening right now to the Joseph’s on my next adventure... A vintage Denon DD table cw Infinity Black Widow arm and dl103d cart... It literally arrived 1 hour ago, got to love FedEx sat delivery!
Impression here is that now the vocals are more pronounced and bass has receded a little, slightly better balance .
But I feel the dl103d is a poor match on this arm( it came with it) and a good vintage mm cart will do better still.
We will see because Prof I agree that having to play loud to get the SQ I like is not the way I want to go. The Gibbons may just end up beating out the Joseph’s after all.
To be continued!
Don't you miss a third qualified system for near-field/desk top listening? It's a really enjoyable experience to sit 2-3 feet from the speakers and be able to look deep into the recording in a way you can't with longer listening distances. I will soon try a genelec 8341 for this position.
Tempted to hear the Gibbons. Read a lot about them. And most seem to agree on them being very good at what they offer. But it is at +90db the real speakers stands out from the rest.....
Agreed that playing loud in order to appreciate the sound from your speakers is asking for a bit much. A great speaker will sound fantastic at low/moderate volumes too - or, at least it should. Based on my quest to find a new set of speakers, I have found that the match with speakers to your amp is crucial. Gibbons are considered to be fairly efficient so they may be more amp friendly than the Josephs here.
Once again I surprise myself by how much a small change can impact SQ in a disproportionate way.
I have the Joseph's in play right now and whilst looking them over carefully it became apparent that they were tilted back ever so slightly, maybe 1 to 1.5 degrees I would say.
Nothing to lose I adjusted the spikes until by my el cheapo level they were pretty close to dead nuts on.
This had an immediate effect on the vocal presentation being more palpable and fleshed out.
Hmm, remember a pair of Focals that preferred being tilted down at the front slightly so thought I would adjust until I had just a slight rake.
Looks like i hit the jackpot. I am listening right now at about 70db and I feel they are lacking nothing in presence, tonal balance or air. Allison Moyet could be in the room with me.
It's a funny old world!
I have not put the Gibbons back in the system since the changes made above but plan to do so later today after completing some of the "honeydew" list!
I listened to the Josephs until late last night at fairly low levels, high 60 to low 70db range and felt that everything sounded quite in balance. I think with these being a fair bit taller than the Gibbons, they needed the rake down at the front to get the mids and tweeter dispersion more accurately aligned with my ears in my slumped down listening position on my large squishy sofa.
So today I plan to crank back to my original spl level of 80db on average and play same albums from previous sessions on both and take mental notes.
I tried, I really, really tried honest I did.
But much as I truly wanted to like the Joseph’s they are the loser in this match up.
Biggest two issues for me.
Having to crank the volume before they truly rock out.
But probably larger than that is the sibilance from the tweeters. While the top end is precise it just has too much sizzle for my ears. While a tube amp might tame them down that is not what I am about to do.
So the Gibbons are back in likely for quite some time.
Listening to one of my "test" albums today made the final decision as I know this album is not recorded "hot" but it definitely sounded like it through the Joseph’s and believe it or not the bass seemed less although that is likely just because it appears to sound hot.
Anybody want a pair of Joseph RM33LE?
Good for you!!! Big JA fan here, but never heard the RM33s so no opinion there. But you know what? You did it the RIGHT WAY that most of us don't get the opportunity to do. It is SO clear you made the right choice. It even makes ME feel good about the choice you made. Enjoy the many, many years of fulfilling music your diligent work has rightfully given you. WELL DONE MAN!!!
@uberwaltz I’m glad I came to your thread a week late as it’s allowed for following the journey, not just the outcomes. Congratulations on settling on a speaker, etc.
If you haven’t already, check out Michael Lavorgna’s system over at Twittering Machines. May give you additional insight into pairings / synergies. He uses the Gibbon X.
I guess one major deciding factor was that I was just not enjoying listening to music through the Joseph's. No I do not think it is because they are more ruthlessly revealing than the Gibbons.
The upper treble really irritated me and as,most rock music has a lot cymbal action this got tiresome.
The Gibbons are just so naturally open and expansive that they are a joy to listen to and when I switched them back in I almost just breathed a huge sigh of relief.
Now I just need sell them.... Lol
I haven't heard the old Joseph speakers, but of the Pulsars and Perspectives, I have sensitive ears yet I find I can listen to them forever, and get sucked totally in to whatever they are playing.
Of course, I also love the Devore speakers too. Basically, JA and Devore are my current favorite two speaker brands (that I don't own that is...Thiel is the third, but I own Thiel).
From everything I had read I was truly not expecting this at all.
I was thinking these would be my final speakers! Well I could but dream!
Not one review pointed to an excess of treble energy or recessed depth at lower volumes.
But we all know each system is independent and you do not always get the synergy you hoped for or that others achieve.
A real shame because as furniture they are a work of art next to the Gibbons.
Just going to throw this out there and ask for opinions as it went through my mind last night.
As the Joseph’s appear to be displaying symptoms in my system at odds with most reviews I read I looked at possible causes beside just my room, ears etc.
Does anybody think that a change of speaker cable could have a significant impact on taking some of the upper end tizz and tightening everything up at lower spl?
Currently using Nordost Red Dawn and I have read many reports of Nordost being somewhat lean and etched.
Possibly solid copper or high copper mix?
Rather than just give up on these speakers I think it would be wise to investigate all possibilities.
What do you think?
I don't know those cables, but I will say based on this review they seem like a much better fit for JA. It'll be very interesting to hear your thoughts on this pairing.
Have not got round to swapping speakers back around but I did fit the Luminous cables in place of the Nordost while the Gibbons are in play.
To ANYBODY out there who is still of the mind that speaker cables do NOT make any difference should come over to my house and LISTEN!
Much deeper tighter bass, vocal definition and presentation much more profound, bigger projected soundstage.
In other words a huge change for the better in SQ. May get round to speaker swap tonight although right now I am just really enjoying the music. But I have a very good feeling so far.
No worries Prof, I can confuse myself at times...lol
So I did put the Josephs into play with the new cables and...…
Underwhelmed to say the least.
There may have been a slight improvement but not to the extent I perceived with the Gibbons, very odd indeed.
Do not get me wrong the Josephs are darn good, it is just that the Gibbons are better!
In my system to my ears.
And that is about all one can state...….
Well good job I am a stubborn SOB!
Finally have the Joseph’s sounding like I expected from day one.
Went back to square one on speaker setup and changed them to woofer in. Hardly any toe in now even though EVERY speaker in this room has sounded best with quite a bit of toe in.
And still the real deal changer was speaker cables, you would laugh if you could see what they are hooked up with now.
Home brewed 101. I have lots of cable and wire acquired over the years from my real job in heavy industrial machinery installations.
So I twisted up 2 pairs of 16/14 gauge from wire we use for 460v motor wiring and threw those in just bare ends.
Now that fabled Joseph neutrality is shining through loud and clear.
At last they actually sound better than the Gibbons!
Of course what I am going to do for final speaker cable I have no idea yet but this suggests nearly pure copper is the key.
This is getting hilarious uberwaltz! But in a fun way. I'm enjoying reading your roller coaster ride with these speakers.
Never heard those older Joseph RM 33s. I wonder how they stand against the newer models that I'm so enamored of.
I know that the Pulsar monitors were designed from what Jeff learned doing the bigger Pearl 2 speakers. And then apparently it was actually designing the Perspectives where Jeff Joseph felt he advanced things there in the crossover etc to where he wanted to incorporate that in the bigger model, hence the Pearl 3s afterwards.
Glad you are amused!
Wish I had been along the journey,more depressed than anything and just that feeling that I must be doing something wrong!
Have been listening solid for couple hours now and do not feel irritated by the top end or out of balance feel that was ever present earlier.
Time to relax and take deep breaths.
I did indeed read through it.
Similar journey although I have not documented ALL the previous speaker trials and tribulations..... Take way too long for me.
Looks like I am back to a good start though with both speakers impressing me very much depending on cabling.
So both are still staying for now.
Now to just try and buy the right cables for the Joseph's first time hopefully.