I wanted to offer up some info that may be useful to those considering taking the plunge with the Ohm Walsh line for two channel stereo that might seek to gain entry at a minimal price point.
That would be accomplished with the Ohm Micro Walsh model for about $1000. I'd refer the reader to the review on sixmoons for more information on that model and Ohm, the company.
This review is about the Ohm Walsh 100 series 3, which provides a larger Ohm Walsh CLS driver than the micros.
After that comes the still larger 200 series 3 driver and then the 300 or 5 series 3 which utilizes the largest driver capable of providing the most extended and dynamic bass in the largest rooms.
The general rule of thumb with the Ohm Walsh line is the larger the driver, the more extended and realistic the bass response in a larger room. Chosing the right model really is that simple. See the website ohmspeakers.com or contact Ohm for more info.
When shopping for Ohm Walsh speakers second hand or used, the most important thing to be aware of is that there have been 3 major versions of the Walsh CLS driver that Ohm has used since its introduction in the very early 80s. Each sound different with the original 80s vintage drivers sounding least refined and the more recent (since 2006 or so) series 3 the most refined. These have the smoothest response, best detail, and best imaging accuracy. All models throw huge soundstages. The series 3 is probably the best here also, but the difference is more marginal in my opinion.
Also, Ohm regularly will customize the internal driver configuration to better suit a particular customers needs. Plus, Ohm users have been upgrading older Walsh CLS speaker systems with newer drivers for around 20 years now.
The bottom line is, other than driver size, unless the seller can confirm the exact series and configuration in side the "cage", it can be difficult or even impossible to know for certain exactly what is in there or exactly what it will sound like, even if in perfect operating condition.
So bottom line is trust but verify when buying used to know exactly what you are getting.
Now, on to the 100 series 3. THe model I own that I am referring to in this review is the Ohm "Super Walsh 2". These are original but refurbished 80's vintage Walsh 2 cabinets modified and fitted by Ohm with the latest Ohm 100 series 3 driver system.
There is a lot of information available already on the general sound of the Ohm Walsh line.
The value added information I can provide here comes from having had 3 different variations of Ohm Walsh CLS speakers set up in the same system and room for careful a/b comparison.
I can offer comparison of the 100 series 3 system with the larger and top of the Ohm line Walsh 5 series 3 and the original 80' vintage Ohm Walsh 2s that I owned prior and concurrently recently for several months.
First, let me address the 100 series 3 drivers in the Walsh 2s compared to the originals base on my experience hearing both in exactly the same listening environment.
The most useful thing I tell you here is that if you dismissed the Ohms back in the 80s due to concerns with timbre, detail and even imaging accuracy, these were valid concerns, but are no longer with the latest series 3 drivers.
Based on my experience owning several other popular brands like Magnepan, B&W, Triangle and Dynaudio these will compete favorably in all aspects of good sound with almost anything. The sound will tend to resemble that you might hear with other more omnidirectional designs however. MBL would probably be the best known. These can be placed closer to walls than many true omni designs however.
Currently the 100 series 3 speaks sit in the same 30X20 L shaped room where my larger Walsh 5 series 3s were, connected to the same system identically as well. The only difference is the speakers used and a slight adjustment in placement about 1 foot closer to the rear wall.
So what's the difference in sound? Not much. I have been amazed to find that the only difference I notice is perhaps a little less on the low end and perhaps a touch less meat on the bones in regards to overall impact, but even this is very marginal at best. You might be able to detect the difference more clearly with perhaps a pipe organ recording that gets down there in the low end.
One thing to note is that the Ohm 5s could go into a much larger room if I had one. The difference with the 100 series 3 would probably become more obvious as well in a larger room.
The fact that the much smaller 100 series 3, true to Ohms claims, really does sound so much like the larger Walsh 5 series 3 in a fairly decent sized room is quite a discovery in my mind. Associated gear Click to view my Virtual SystemSimilar products
- Ohm Walsh 2 (original design, eighties vintage)
- Ohm Walsh 5 Series 3 (larger model for larger rooms with onboard level adjustments for room acoustics)
Dynaudio Countour 1.3 mkII
- B&W P6
- Magnepan mg1.3c