I've got a set of Proac Studio 100's in teak for sale 1990's. They have sounded better and better depending on the amps I pair them with. Very few of the bookshelf speakers I've heard image or stage as well and they are very natural sounding. Used, they are a bargain most feel. They do need breakin as the surrounds are new. Not all the monitors will work well with subs. Proacs seem to as they even make one for it now.
With the reviews I can't imagine not trying the KEF LS50. Besides, it looks really cool.
That is some serious power you have for a desktop system. I would also look at the Anthony Gallo Strada 2 and the Magnepan Mini setup. Both have been described as the ultimate desktop system. I actually have the Gallo Strada 2s, just haven't had time to set them up yet. You have the muscle for them both, they are in your price range, and they are really wonderful in the near field.
Check out the Nola "Boxer"
PSB has a few very good monitor speakers; and you might find a Totem monitor used which are sought for their great accuracy and natural sound
Audience ONE desk top speaker has gotten excellent reviews....
The Audience One is probably your best bet for a desk top system. It was reviewed in Stereophile a few issues back by Robert Reina.
I still think that you should do what everyone should do and that's to go listen. I remember getting my Proacs when I went in to the store to buy Vandersteens. That was a few years ago. Proac gave me legit soundstaging and imaging. The whole speaker sounded like it was worth thousands more than I paid and it made the Vandy's sound dark and not that great.
Fast forward 15 years or so and I went to Audio Connection to buy the new Proac D series. I listened and LOVED how they sounded. They just did everything a bit better than the monitors I'm selling as well as my main speakers, the Proac Supertowers. Then John put on the Vandy Treo's. I told him that i had no desire to hear Vandy's, but I did because he made me listen. I was in shock and awe! Vandys??? Vandys????? Really? really? Really???
They just sounded real. They did everything the Proacs did and did them better. They were just more REAL. I was blown away, but I was glad I kept an open mind. This is the only reason I'm selling off two more pair of my Proacs. It's all about listening as your ears may have liked the Proacs better or you may like the B&W's better. I personally have heard all the PSB's that have been 'reveiewed' and raved about. I didn't like them. They weren't alive or real like other speakers I've heard going against them.
What most folks just don't get or want to believe is that MOST reviews are not real. There is so much free stuff given to these reviewers that you just can't believe them. Also, their ears and equipment is totally different from what YOU have. That's the reality. Do most know that Sam Tellig from Stereophile is actually Tom Gillet? Tellig is Gillet backwards ;)...... Lot's of garbage out there for reviews. I'm not discounting all of them, but nearly any reviewer will tell you that you need to use their words and make a list of products from the reviews. I will give nearly all reviewers that. I love reading reviews and it makes me want to go listen or not.
In this thread you've been given a few speakers to listen to:
Proac Studio 100 or Supertowers (both have new updated drivers)
Gallo Strada 2
Since you are nearfield, I'd say you should listen to true monitors. That's the reason I have the Proac Studio's as well as the Supertowers. I needed a true nearfield speaker that was revealing as well as still being able to stage and image. I'm sure the guys who own the other speakers got them because they heard the same things.
What do you need in a speaker? Does imaging matter to you? Do you need a speaker that it tonally perfect? Midrange? Highs? Bass? Does the speaker need to be placed perfectly or you lose their magic? Set up is so important in nearfield listening. How easy are these speakers to set up?
We all will tell you that what we own is best or what we want to sell is best, but what's best for us, isn't best for you. I can promise you that if you set up all the above speakers and critically listen, that you'd knock out most of them for one reason or another. Heck, I've heard some Paradigm monitors sound pretty darn good with top electronics also. I like them better than PSB, but many like PSB better.So many choices and if you just take other's suggestions and buy off of them, you could be selling them here within the next year.
Sorry to drone on and I'm not preaching, just sharing MY feelings. Please let us know what you're thinking and what you end up doing? Thanks.
Hmmm, so if I were a reviewer, I'd be Joe Eniazomil. Nice! Is Eniazomil Italian?
Anywho, I second the Kef Ls50. Sounds great, looks cool and has good resale if you don't like them!
Good luck and happy listening!
Heard some OPERA mezzo speakers today.
very nice standmount and only 1500.00.
Maybe worth a look.
How about the Ascend Sierra 2 or LSA statement?
WHAT-HI-FI Best stand-mounter £800-£1500, Awards 2013.
ATC has struck gold again. These are the most talented stand-mounters anywhere near this price
What Hi-Fi - October 2013
Weve given ATC a lot of Awards for the SCM11s over the years. Theyre versatile and balanced, and were very fond of them. In fact, we dont bother putting them away anymore theyre an important part of our stock of reference kit.
So when we heard of a new version, we had mixed feelings. Updated speakers are always exciting, but its hard not to wince at the thought of someone going all Frankenstein with them on some operating table
The new SCM11s are a drastic improvement over an already talented performance, and they have the good looks to match. ATC has raised the bar it set itself. This isnt just a step up its a running leap.
I've never heard the ATC's that everyone speaks so highly about. I need to see if I have a dealer near me (CT).
I've had both the Kef R300 and the Kef LS50 in my office system without a sub. My room is small at 11W x 12.5L x 8H and the amp I am using puts our 135 watts into 8 ohms.
I ended up keeping the LS50. I think that in part it was due to the speakers matching the room size better than the R300.
In my setup the LS50 has a very smooth mid-range and open highs with good solid bass. Obviously, they don't have the deepest extension, but I find the bass satisfying for all genres of music.
The R300s had a bit more dynamic punch for rock music, but in my small room I found the highs to be a little too bright and sometimes to the point of harshness. However, in a somewhat larger space, they sound great.
Both sounded enjoyable in different ways, but ultimately, I found that the LS50s were the best fit for that space. I think they're an excellent speaker, especially given their price.
I"ve never heard a sub integrate properly with a speaker that doesn't go into the 30's. It's almost impossible to do so if you look at the basic physics of it all. Spoke to Richard Vandersteen about this a few months ago and he did a paper on this subject and agrees. This is one reason he won't make a satellite/sub system. Just be careful about it. Will you use stands? If so, you could do a floorstander with a narrow footprint.
That's significant power for an office system.
Much would depend on how close you will be to the speakers.
If you are looking for something on the desktop and your listening distance is less than 5 feet, something like a powered monitoring system like the Genelec or similar may work best.
Across the room and passive, the KEF LS50 or the new Sierra 2 would be a good start. You may not have thought about it, but what type of sound do you like from the midrange? A metal cone sounds different than paper. I prefer paper generally; sounds more 'alive' to me.
I use a pair of Ascend Sierra-1's on stands in my office with a Rega Brio-R. More than enough power for an office. You can use their q-plugs to control bass if needed.
To add to the mix ... I was looking to do my office and was considering both the Ascend and LSA as well, but instead went with an active pair: Adam F7 ($898 at Sweetwater and Guitar Center). This relieved me from purchasing additional gear such as an integrated amp. These are rated down to low 40's though I've been satisfied enough thus far to not employ a sub (although Adam makes one just for the F7 monitors which I might try at some point in the future, or not).
These are not your average el-cheapo stuido-type monitors. The sound quality is excellent for music enjoyment, especially with their ART tweeters. Superb.