ATC SCM 12, because it has better bass, mids and highs than any speaker in its price class, although I will caution you that tubes will not 1. be needed to smooth the sound and 2. be good enough to drive these speakers in a larger room.
The ATC 7" Mid/woof driver completely out classes the L17 Seas driver in the Joseph and the the Monitor Audio's are not as good as the Joseph.
Biggest draw back to ATC SCM-12 is the 8-10 dealers that carry the product line. They will likely be hard to find in your area. At the moment no speaker company is putting out better valued speakers than ATC, the SCM7 at $1K, 12 @ $2K and the SCM35 at $4K.
Others to look at, Dynaudio, C1.1, Aud72, New PSB Platinum
Thanks for your reply... looking at this again it should have been in the discussion area... next time I'll get it right and will post my reviews as this post continues to keep on track. Thanks!
The Monitor 10's are killer. I loved them with my audio refinement integrated. Don't forget to look at Revel M20's in the used market.
I'm using Green Mountain Europa's with a Jolida 502A, and the sound is fantastic. In my opinion, the Europa is a real sleeper of a monitor, and the technology and parts are way better than the competition at its price point.
The Europa's use a Morel soft dome tweeter and an Aurisound woofer. Internal wiring is Audio Magic silver wire to the tweeter, and cryo'd Jena Labs copper to the woofer. The enclosures are cast marble and virtually non-resonant. In terms of speed, precision, and detail, these speakers are unmatched in my listening experience. I used to have Martin Logans, and switching to these speakers only improved on the qualities I like about the ML's. These speakers sound a lot like electrostats in the mid-range and treble. Bass is very good as well. The lows begin to roll off at around 45-50hZ, but what's there is very tight and clean. If you'll be using a sub, you really will get an excellent, full-range sound.
The Europa's are also time and phase aligned, with a recessed baffle that uses quite a bit of felt around and between the drivers. Crossover is a simple first-order design using a high-quality Solen capacitor.
As you can probably tell, I'm really enamored with these speakers. I have no connection to Green Mountain Audio, I just feel like these speakers are an incredible value. Especially with the all-tube Jolida, the sound is really terrific. Smooth and pure as you could ever want. Not overly lush or warm, but very musical and sweet. I listen to mostly jazz and classical, with some blues thrown in, and this type of music is very well served with these speakers. You can check out the rest of my system in the Virtual Systems.
At the very least, you should give these great speakers a listen. You might be surprised!
I did a comparison lately between the RM7si, M20s, ProAc Ref8, Amphion Argon and Sonus Faber Concerto. With my YBA DT(50wpc), I prefered the RM7si and Sonus Faber Concerto. The RM7si was better in terms of sound staging but the mid range of the Sonus Faber was outstanding. I settled for the Sonus Faber Concerto.If can afford, I would advise you to check out the rest of these speakers with your amp. It's very important. Based on review I would have got the M20 but amp to speaker pairing proof otherwise.
(Acoustic Zen XLR)
(Silver Audio Hycinth)
YBA Intergre DT
(Harmonic Tech Pro-11)
Sonus Faber Concerto.
Just loved it!
The ATC SCM 12s are outrageous and will best anything I've heard in that price range. Nearly as quick as electrostatics with great vocals. Please add to list.
Joseph Audio Versus Monitor?
It is all a matter of taste, but you asked for opinions, so
here's mine: I am not a fan of Joseph Audio speakers.
I find them too laid back and too smooth -- no punch.
But -- hey -- that's just me.
When I was auditioning them, there was another guy
in the room who was groovin' along and declared them great, "pipe and slippers" type speakers.
Check out the System Audio SA2K at http://www.system-audio.com/showpage.asp?siteid=2&id=312. I discovered these $3500 monitors at the 2002 CES being demoed with the BAT VK300x integrated and haven't heard anything better the past 16 months. I "upgraded" from the $5000 Sonus faber Electa Amator I's that had the Esotar T660 tweeters! The SA2K's use modified Scanspeak Revelator drivers. The highs are sweet and non-fatiguing, the bass is unbelievable down to 40Hz -1.5dB and female vocals in particular sound live. If you want punch & balls using tubes for jazz & blues, these monitors are a must audition. I'm driving them with an all tube Kora Galaxy & Eclipse system. The SA2K's have been listed on A'gon between $1700~$2K.
Check out the Von Schwekert VR-1s.
Thank you for all your replies thus far. This last weekend I auditioned both the Monitor GR10s and Josephs... The GR10s had exceptional imaging and response, but lacked the sweet fullness of the Josephs. I can definitely see the "pipe and slipper" side, but was really impressed with how they (the Josephs) handled a wide range of selections, including several complex symphony passages that have muddied many other top-end monitors I've listened to. More as I go along, and I will check out the other suggestions above!
I currently own the previous version of the Joseph (RM7si signatures),of which I an extremely fond. In my setup (Simaudio I5 & Rega Jupiter2000) the imaging/defintion is outstanding, the response impressive for a modestly priced monitor. I truly beleive the sim is the crucial/critical element in this setup; I have not heard the new 7's or the Monitor Audio, so I can't comment on those. The josephs keep me grinning...period. I will not be looking for another pair of speakers for awhile (unless a pair of Tyler Acoustic Linbrook monitors should happen my way!).
Speaking of, you may want to give the Taylo Reference a listen, I beleive they fall into your price range. Cheers & happy hunting!
Does Green Mountain have a website? Seem to be some real fans but it's hard to get much information on their whole line.
I don't think the website is up yet, but Roy Johnson, the man behind Green Mountain Audio, is a great guy to talk to, and would probably be very helpful if you have any questions about his speakers. He often posts on Audiogon, and his user name is Royj. You can e-mail him through Audiogon.
Best of luck,
Okay, here is a compiled list of suggestions that I think I could swing on the used market. How would you relative rank?
Dynaudio Special 25s
Sonus Cremonas (probably a budgetary a stretch)
Tyler Lindbrook Monitors
VMPS 626 Ribbons (still don't know much about)
I still like the Monitors just fine, but for now they are off the list. Of course it is a matter of taste, and I would probably be happy with any of these. Auditioning opportunities are another matter. So 12345 on sonic performance across a wide spectrum of music, what is your opinion? As for me, final input is good since I am ready to make a decision soon. Thanks K
On a responce posted on this topic (3/20 /04) a VMPS speaker is reviewed. I would suggest you look at that first before deciding. I have a pair of Proac Responce 2 which I love. Used with respective stands about 1600.
REFERENCE 3A MM DE CAPO I
If you are looking at monitors in this price range then I would recommend the offerings from Proac. There should be three speakersd which you should consider listening too. They would be the Tablette 2000 and the Tablette Reference 8 and Reference 8 signature. These monitors just "sing" and they just disappear in a room. If you are going to add a subwoofer to your system then any of the three would be a wise choice, the 8 signature being my favorite. The midrange will be classic british sound, not thrown right in you face, but just suspended right in the soundstage, and the amps your looking at will have more than enough juice to satisfy. There have been serveral reviews on the 8 signature and they are all very positive, check out MF's review in a recent Stereophile. The ultimate choice would be the next replacement for the Response 1SC.
If you have to chose between the Joseph audios and the Monitor Audios I would eventually go for the monitor audios, because there is no doubt that they are the better engineered speakers, even though the JAs are excellent and more exclusive, the monitor audio will leave you more satisfied.
Good choices, but please add Spendor to your short list. You can get a pair of used SP 1/2s or the slightly smaller SP 2/3s for this price, and either will offer a musicality far superior to almost any speaker made -- regardless of price.
I own the Greem Mountain Callisto. They are at the top of your price range, but are well worth your time. They are easy to drive (I'm using 15 watt of tube power) and throw a huge soundstage. I swear I can hear the musicians play the notes. I have purchased more music and spent more time listening than ever before. They also have a demo program, but be forwarned. I doubt you will send them back. Good luck!
Their web site:
Harbeth Compact 7ES used or Monitor 30 used....find a dealer, bring your music....sit back and just listen,