Need advice for full range speaker with bottom end


Hi,

My current set up is Innersound Eros MKI with
Antique Sound Lab 1006 845 amp and cary slp98 pre. Altogether a pretty satisfying setup for beautify mids and highs.

I do notice and miss the bottom end on some music. So I'm interested in setting up a second system with some of the other parts I've already have lying around. I have a pair of Nuforce 8's and a Benchmark Dac. Given the Benchmark has volume control, I figure I can skip the preamp and go with just adding a pair of speakers. I will source this system with my computer and the Squeezbox 3 to the DAC.

I'm hoping to find a pair of full range speaker that can give me what I'm missing and still resemble some of the mids and highs I get out of my innersound panels.

My hope is to keep things sane within the $2-4K range...hopefully closer to 2k than 4K. I plan to be buying use to keep cost down.

Anyone know of some good bargins for full range speakers that can hit close to 20hz?

Gerald

geraldedison
The Eros definitely did not go into the 20Hz's with any kind of weight or authority when I had them...

Now I have the VMPS RM30's which seem more potent in the low bass than the Eros (regardless of the Eros published specs, which are very optimistic in my experience). The midrange and highs of the VMPS are at least the equal of the Eros except that they are more dynamic, detailed, and focused (and have a much wider sweet spot).

Another really great looking and great sounding speaker to consider is the Acoustic Zen Adagio. I heard them at a friends and liked them quite a bit.

I also had the Benchmark DAC1 for a while. It is very detailed out of it's volume-controlled outputs, but loses dynamics and bass extension/slam when used that way. I recommend using a good active preamp or buffered passive preamp with it. You can also take the output from the high-current headphone outputs and it will have sufficient bass slam, although it will lose some finesse and detail that way.
Gerald,

True 20 Hz bass extension is a rare and expensive commodity, especially if you aren't going to use subwoofers. Notice that I stipulated "true" - I know of fairly popular speakers that fall short of their claimed bass extension by nearly an octave.

Are you really sure that's what you need? Very few two-channel recording have content below 27 Hz because there are no common acoustic instruments other than the organ that have fundamentals below 27 Hz. Do you listen to organ music or electronica with ultradeep bass? If so, then trying to approach 20 Hz makes sense.

Anyway, my nomination would be used Gallo Ref 3 or 3.1 with the afterburner bass amp. That will get you into the lower 20's.

Duke
To add to Duke's comments, consider whether your room can support speaker output down to 20hz or keep the extra hz's under control. A speaker that rolls at 32hz can be a blessing in a lot of rooms. FWIW. :-)

P.S. It just dawns on me to ask - Are you sure that the sound you are looking for is not the absolute bottom but an increase in what I would call the power zone, i.e. 200 to 500 hz +/-. I have found that missing in some panels or electrostats. As You say great highs and mids, but the 'bass' lacked richness.
i would recommend used hales, b&w matrix, dunlavy, duntech, ohm, etc for great full range speakers at close to 2k. the more power the better, and the bigger model, the better.
Used Von Schweikert VR4 Gen III HSE. Bass to 16Hz. ~$3000/pair.
i would recommend used hales, b&w matrix, dunlavy, duntech, ohm, etc for great full range speakers at close to 2k. the more power the better, and the bigger model, the better.
Let me chime in as I have a pair of Innersound Eros MKII
and went with a new speaker for both bass and wider sweetspot. I went with VMPS and I feel they capture a good part of the Innsersound magic but blow them away in the bass department, I own the FF3 SRE, and I still Bi-Amp just as I did with Innersound using VMPS cross-over.
Not that you will like them but my dad owned Legacy Focus 20/20 speakers and they have pretty good bass, some love em' some dont.
To ask Tvad a quick question, have you ever heard a Von 4jr go down to 16hz? or should I say felt?
To ask Tvad a quick question, have you ever heard a Von 4jr go down to 16hz? or should I say felt?
Chadnliz
VR4 Jr, no. They are not rated to 16Hz.

My recommendation was for the VR4 Gen III HSE, which are rated to 16Hz, and yes I have measured them with an SPL meter to below 20Hz using the Stereophile Test CD.
couple of nice B&w 801 matrix series on Audiogon now..Right in your price range.Plenty of low end and the rest to go with it!
sorry, I didnt see that. Well my gut was right, I didnt think the VR4jr went that low even if I need to read more carfully :)
I agree with Tvad on the VR4 GenIII. Mine are the regular gen IIIs and I'm quite happy with them. You can probably save ~$600-1000 on the Non-HSE models. There is a pair listed on A'gon right now for $2200.

My other system uses Totem Mani-2s with a Rel Storm III subwoofer. A whole 'nother way to approach the problem.
Wow, loss some sleep doing the research from the advice given today...some really good recommendations have been given.

Base on these few hours of analysis, the VMP, VR4 jr and the Gallo 3.1 all seem very impressive for the price and they all compete in the same ball park.

It seems bi-amping is the way to go with all these speakers. Given I current drive my highs and mids with my 25w SET amp and the bass with a pair of nuforce ref 8's. Will this amp combo be adequate for any of these speakers?

Amp question aside, has any one heard more than one of these speakers and can comment on how they fair against each other?

Very tough choice...

Gerald
I own VMPS so take my thoughts with grain of salt but I think both VMPS and Von Schweikert are in a whole other league then the Gallo, dont get me wrong it is a great speaker but I feel both the "V" choices to be superior.
As far as deep and accurate goes, if VMPS still produces like they used to (and they probably do given the reports I have seen), they will definitely go rock bottom as far as bass is concerned - I used to own a pair of the original "smaller" tower speakers.

I measured in room 3db downpoint as 27Hz. The cool part of the speakers was that you could somewhat modify the 3db downpoint vs. response smoothness by loading the woofer with clay to match your room.

I bought them several years back and to this day I still remember the smooth ease of response in the bass...

Good luck in your search!

- DeeCee
Chadnliz,

Do you feel my combo of 25W SET amp and Nuforce ref 8 would be up to the task to drive a VMP speaker? I see a pair of VM40 on Audiogon today. Don't know if you think that would be a worthy model to try. It weights 200lbs each and that's somewhat intimidating (how will I ever lug that up to my second floor music room?!)

Do you use tube amp to drive your VMP speaker? You listening to the VM30 model, is there significant difference with a VM40?

Gerald
I would call Brian at VMPS, he answers the phone most of the time, I own the FF3 SRE wich was a special edition, it has a 48in midrange panel but the RM40 has a better midrange now then I have so they should be better, I power mine with 400 watts from both amps and I dont want to speculate and stear you wrong.
By the way my speakers way over 300lbs each but on a 2 wheel "dolly" they are a breeze to moove, and they are tall and pretty narrow, moving them a bit here and there is alot easier then you think...1 guy in good shape can do it easily, atleast mine you can.......and yours weigh over 100lbs less.
Over at Audioasylum there is an entire VMPS club you can ask questions and dig for much more info then will usually be found in these parts. My gut tells me you can use what you have but will the tubes give you loud levels, that is what I dont know.
Chadnliz,

Thanks for info. After a day more of research, I still can't decide between the VR4 Jr and the VM40. The VR4 is cheaper and shipping won't be a challenge. From my research I'm getting the impression that the bass on the VR4 is going to be faster and more authoratative (this is just my interpetations of peoples descriptions).

Lilkewise, I gather the impression that the VM40 will have the details, highs and mids that I've been use to with probably pretty satisfying bass as well although that may not be the VMP's strongest point.

Due to the weight and packing and shipping requirements for the VM40, if I was to buy it today. I'm guessing the cost difference between the VM40 and the VR4 Jr will end up being $3500 vs $2500 with the VM40 being the more expensive.

That is a relavant difference...would you say the VMP is worth the $1K difference?

Gerald
Unless you listen at low volume, I'm dubious of your 25 SET's ability to drive the midrange and tweeter section of the VR4 Jr since the Jr speakers have a 4 ohm impedance from 150Hz - 20Hz.

If you can, I'd suggest taking your amp to a local VS dealer and listening to the combination before you buy. Otherwise, buy used VR4 Jr so you don't take a beating if you decide to sell.
I auditioned the VR4jr and it is a great speaker but I went with VMPS, if shipping and price is a real issue then I suppose you will want to choose the Von, but both shipping and price are one time concerns so I would consider the long term nature of this investment and not a temporary issue stop you from what just may be the more desired speaker. Just my humble opinion
Tvad,

I appreciate your advice on checking out the 25w Set amp. I am questionable on that too. Although, one VS dealer demo the vr4 jr with a 30wpc Thor tube amp.

I am looking at the VMP RM40 and the VR4 Jr on Audiogon at this point. It's a tough choice and I don't feel there's really a bad decision I can make at this point. Both have really won a following... Although, the RM40 seems to have more to offer, but it's going to be about $1000 more.

Gerald

03-06-07: Geraldedison
Tvad,

I appreciate your advice on checking out the 25w Set amp. I am questionable on that too. Although, one VS dealer demo the vr4 jr with a 30wpc Thor tube amp.
The 30w Thor is a push-pull ultralinear design. Significant difference between push-pull and SET. I can understand how the Thor would work on the VR4 Jr.

If that dealer is close, take your SET amp in and give it a try.
might be too late on this but :) ... with that amp it sounds like a stretch for big 'lower' eff. spkrs. i'd look into some nice eff. monitors and a good powered sub. opens up a lot of options for great monitors and for $ a powered sub is a great way to get real deep and adjust for room and spkr conditions. w/out knowing room size and spl desired i'm only guessing, but ability to tame deep bass is very helpful in certain room setups. lotta purists don't go for subs but i think they are a great addition for many tube lovers. enjoy the hunt!
A full-range speaker is nothing more than several part-range speakers packaged together, as no single driver can effectively cover the entire range of human hearing while allowing good volume, power-handling, and efficiency. The three-way speaker design has historically been most successful at dividing the spectrum optimally. Two-way designs tend to sacrifice mid-range or bass, or sometimes the extreme top end, depending on the design. The ported Rogers Studio 1 and Spendor BC-1/SP1/2 are very highly evolved two-ways, and in respects come very close to the ideal speaker. I owned the Rogers Studio 1 for 20 years, but ultimately I became dissatisfied with the coloration of the mid-band caused by using the 8" woofer/mid-range at such high frequencies. The mid-range always seemed 'slow'. This design used a tweeter and super-tweeter, along with a driver that covered the bass and a large part of the mid-range. The port allowed a deep bass, but it was 'boomy' at times. I sold those in 2002 and went to the true three-way Ymaha NS-1000M, with which I am supremely happy. The bass may not go down quite as deep as the Rogers, but the difference is hardly noticeable. I think some of the "deep bass" iwa shearing from the Rogers was in fact just distortion.

A few full-range speakers may have built-in subwoofers, but in fact very little programme material is found below 50Hz. Reproducing sound below that frequency is very difficult and expensive. I would not demand that a full-range speaker do that, but instead suggest that you consider a sub-woofer. Since bass below abot 200Hz is non-directional, it does not matter that the box is separate.
I had tried in the past with the monitor & sub combo and I'm not sure if it is room interaction or what, but I was never able to melt the sound together between the Sub and speaker. Granted, I only got a $600 sub to start and it didn't fit that well with the rest of my setup.

I'm hoping to leave the melting of the lower range to the speaker builders and leverage their expertise.

I really learned alot from everyone who contributed on this thread. I've been won over to search for a VMP speaker. It really looks like my cup of tea at this point.

THANK YOU ALL FOR THE ADVICE!!!!

Gerald
"03-08-07: Geraldedison
I had tried in the past with the monitor & sub combo and I'm not sure if it is room interaction or what, but I was never able to melt the sound together between the Sub and speaker. Granted, I only got a $600 sub to start and it didn't fit that well with the rest of my setup.

I'm hoping to leave the melting of the lower range to the speaker builders and leverage their expertise.

I really learned alot from everyone who contributed on this thread. I've been won over to search for a VMP speaker. It really looks like my cup of tea at this point.

THANK YOU ALL FOR THE ADVICE!!!!"

If you can get a set of nice Yamaha NS-1000 or NS-1000M's, I doubt you'll be dissatisfied with any part of the sound spectrum. As I said, very little programme material goes below the range of this speaker (40Hz).
You may want to check into one of Rick Reimers speakers. The Wind Rivers or Tetons would get you the deep tight bass you are looking for and will work well with your 25 watts SET. I am using 18 watt SET with the Teton's and have plenty of power to spare.
The Onix Mini Strata with 2 8 inch powered subs with 2 350 watt class A/B amps,a 5 1/4 inch midbss coupler rated down to 27 htz with a planer midrange and tweeter,and oh so sweatly intergrated for top to bottom cohesion all for $1995 the best deal in highend audio today in my opinion.