picking speakers (and electronics) for a relatively large room - new

Hi guys I am purchasing my first high end 2 channel audio system for a reasonably large room in my house and would like some input. My speaker budget is approximately $13k and overall about $20k.   I will be streaming exclusively. I've done some listening and am trying to decide between Goldenear (Triton One and Reference), Sonus Faber (Olympica III and Serafino) and Focal (Kanta 3 and Sopra 2 - haven't heard yet but about to listen). I listen to a lot of electronic music, somewhat loud, in addition to having been raised on jazz, standards and vocals which I will return to often in smaller quantities. I mostly listen around my living area rather than in a dedicated listening position, but I appreciate my music.

I think my first issue is the size of my space which is 15x25 with a 12 foot ceiling on half and a great room cathedral ceiling on the other half. Also the room opens to another room with a lower 8 foot ceiling and has two french doors that in nice weather open to the outside - so, a rather imperfect and large space.   I am trying to figure out what will fill the room appropriately in terms of speaker and then power.  

 My questions are:

  1. are those Sonus speakers physically too small for my space and do I need physically larger speakers than those (note: I realize they require more power but take that out of the equation for this specific question assuming I can spend more to supply them with what they need)?
  2. the Focal Sopra 2 is physically smaller but from the higher product line and more money than the larger Focal Kanta 3 - should I go with the higher end but slightly smaller speaker (46"H and 7" largest drivers vs 50" H and 8" largest drivers for comparison) or is it physically too small?
  3. how much power do I need and how does a guy in my position determine this? (I already know the sonus require more power but what I am asking is once I pick a given speaker how do I determine how much absolute power do I need? do I take gear home and keep trying (seems impractical)? how do I decide between 100, 200, 300, 500 or more(?) wPC?   is it like hard drive space where more is just better up to a certain limit so spend as much as I can? (seems irresponsible - I would like a more satisfying answer)
  4. I have been thinking I would invest more dollars in solid state amplification because of the dynamic music I like and a tube preamp so that my midranges and vocals benefit from this treatment.   at my knowledge level how do I tell if a speaker and amp 'get along?' which I read about but don't know that I could really screen unless it is super obvious.   I don't trust my ears enough to really now or know how to evaluate. should I just buy some very reputable separates (I have been thinking used to save money) and string em up?


Would love any opinions about these questions specifically or generally. Cheers!


Showing 3 responses by erik_squires

The Magico S3 paired with the right electronics could be a real treat if they don't sound too chesty. The price is terribly tempting.
Otherwise, if you are thinking of SF, try to find the wide baffle models. Absolutely among the best speakers I've ever heard at any price.
The SF Stradivari.

Wide baffle speakers are amazing in terms of how much of the recording's room acoustics they bring into the room. Those are some of my all time favorite speakers of all time.

The issue is sheer cubic volume, which affects bass response, to overcome this you need multiple high output subwoofers and a way of rolling off the bass reponse that the smaller mid woofers or lower woofers in the main loudspeakers would see therefore, those drivers would not have to go as low which would increase power handling and provide enough sound pressure levels to provide clean undistorted sound to fill up the room. This can only be accomplished by an electronic crossover either in the preamp or a control processor.

Well, I've been schooled. I guess this is my first time hearing how a real audiophile would approach the issue. Thanks so much, I'll go do more research.

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