Efficiency is two parts essentially - sensitivity and impedance. ProAcs do not have the advertised sensitivity - it is lower in actuality. However their impedance is generally excellent (i.e. high) so they tend to be a great match with tube amps. 40W should be fine as long as your room isn't huge.
They are pretty transparent so they can sound thin and bright as well as thick and rich depending on the electronics hooked up to them. Every time I've heard ProAcs with tubes, the sound has been fantastic. They are especially good at getting timbre right. I have heard just about all the new ones and liked the D15 the best of them all.
40 watts should drive the proacs(a great speaker), but the coincidents should sound incredible.
Both speakers have different sonic character. Coincident is honest, good extension and fast. ProAc is "English" - enrichment in mid range with a softer highs. I would say ProArc is a little colored than Coincident. It depends what is your cup of tea. Coincident is flat at 8 ohmn. I use both 25W and 85W class A tube amp to drive my Total Victory II. With the 25W amp, you can't believe it comes out from that small power.It is a very easy-driven speaker. YOu have to listen to both to decide. Different speaker, in fact.
I drive Response 2.5s with 14 watts of SET power and it's a great match. The Proacs mate well with tubes, and will reflect the qualities of whatever you're powering them with.
Is ProAc cold and analytical? Does it require tubes to be listenable? I was interested in Proac but then I read this in the Stereophile Aug. 2008 review of the D28s:
I drove the D28s with Musical Fidelity's kW monoblocks, as well as with the 100Wpc Music Reference RM-200 tube amp (reviewed in April 2002)which ultimately proved a better match for these speakers. The kWs and D28s produced a somewhat cold, bright, overly analytical sound on top, complemented by exceptionally taut bass. Switching to the Reference tube amp produced the creamy, warm, inviting sound I'd heard from the D28s in Tempe, giving up only a bit of the kWs' bass clarity, control, and definition.
Is ProAc cold and analytical? Does it require tubes to be listenable?
Kind of. Definitely tilted that way, of course, it is all a matter of taste. Jack Sprat could eat no fat while his wife could eat no lean. Are Proac speakers "unlistenable" ? - if you are like his wife then yes.
Very interesting. I've had the impression from the forums that Proacs in general
were in the British Harbeth school--"forgiving," which
I thought meant not too icy or piercing.
I guess this British sound is confined to, say,
Wilson Benesch, Spendor, maybe Tyler from what I've
read on the 'gon. At least that's my impression from
my reading here. Thanks.
I've heard the 2.5's on Plinius gear.
Not bright, not cold.
Nice warm midrange
A bit rolled-off on top.
A bit thick and slow down low.
I liked them but not enough to buy them - I got Reynaud's instead.
That's what I heard.
Read the Stereophile review carefully, and you'll see that the D28s are significantly different from the Response 2.5s--not only the new advanced porting system, but different drivers from different manufacturers. Haven't heard the D28s, but the older speakers are much closer to the, for sake of a better word, "English" school.
The ProAcs are definitely not cold or bright, quite the opposite, especially when matched with tubes. I almost bought a pair of Studio 140's myself - nice sounding speakers. Not familiar with the Coincident speakers, so can't comment there.
So do you like the Pro Resp. 2.5's? No fatigue there?
Smooth vocals? Would they work with high-quality solid state, if you have heard them with those amps?
Same question for the Studios.
Thanks a lot for any comments!
I have not heard the Response 2.5. The Studio 140's do sound great on vocals. Either would work with any solid state amp, though I have not heard them with one. I prefer tubes myself, and they are efficient enough to be paired with most tube amps. The Response series should be, too.
I listened to the Proac Response 2.5 and Coincident Partial and Super Eclipse II.
Both hooked to Rogue Tube Mono-blocks. Pre-amps deferred (We tried Rogue, Canary, Joule-Electra, Shanling Solid State, etc).
These speakers represent two different house sounds:
Eril's description of Proac is bang on in my mind.
Very sweet and warm mid-range.
Slightly rolled off highs and not the tightest bass around (some tweaking can be done with the sponge that blocks the port and a powerful solid state will control it better but its basic character remains).
Probably typical British sound (easy on the ears, warm but slightly soft and not the fastest and most resolving).
The Coincident sounded much faster, more dynamic, extended on both ends, clearer, more resolving but more than anything: open and ambient (lots of air) at the expense of less mid range lushness/body and sweetness.
The Coincident is more tube friendly to say more efficient.
Which is better?
Personal preference and your room and gear of course.
Probably if both speakers' fortes could have been integrated in one set of speakers they would have been the cat's meow...
To my personal taste, I would want some happy medium and if forced to live with one or the other I would probably do the following:
Proac- I would try to match it with a 5751 tube based pre-amp which is sparkly, has a forward mid-range and very extended on both top and bottom, like a Joule-Electra LA-100 Mk III and a Bi-Polar based powerful Solid State amp (Bryston 4B, 7B Simaudio W5).
Coincident - I would go to tube only front end, preferably 300B (that is what they were designed to work with) to try to get more mid-range body while retaining the airiness and clarity.
They're both good speakers. Define your preferences and have a listen to both.
I've had the Proac D25 (similar to the 28, same drivers) with high quality SS amplification (Rowland concerto with PC-1) and the sound was definitely tilted up at the high end. I have had Harbeth here, and at least these D25's are NOT the 'english' sound, if Harbeth is what that sound is. That said, they do produce a nice soundstage and do very well for what they do. I put my Tyler's back in the system however, and breathed a sigh of relief. The Proac's were very 'hot' with my gear. Everyone seems to say tubes make the match. I would like to hope there was not that much difference between tubes and SS. I've heard McIntosh MA6900 and C22/MC240 combo, and the two sounded very similar with B&W speakers. Why a speaker (like Proac) would vary so much from one to another would be beyond my meager understanding of electronics. Lest anyone say that my amp is class 'D' and perhaps 'digital sounding', remember that the panel in the Absolute SOund that reviewed several Class 'D' amps found them lacking in output in the high treble range. Go figure...
Let's remember that we're talking about three different speakers here: the Response 2.5s, the D25s and the D28s. As an owner of the Responses, and in light of the posts above (I haven't heard the 25s or 28s), it's clear to me that the change of drivers has resulted--not surprisingly--in a change of acoustic character. Whether that's a good thing or a bad thing, that's up to your ears to say. But as an owner of older Celestions and older B&Ws, and perhaps a future owner of Harbeths or Spendors, I know where the Responses should be categorized.