Rock and roll speakers?


Is/are there a brand/model of speaker that is better suited/build to play classic rock/hard rock and symphonic music fairly loud?
Speakers will be powered by two Sony 333 ES AMPS.
Budget is around 1500 dollars, preferably used, and I can rebuild or upgrade as needed.
Thanks.
rockanroller
Why don't we do it different this time. Instead of us investing a lot of time giving you answers, only to have you give us an education on audio, why don't you teach us what we need to know first. That way we can give answers that will properly suit you.
Some classic JBL Century 100's would fit the bill. Or some vintage Cerwin Vegas!! LOL
Klipsch forte or forte ii Or heresy.
Mapman
Thanks.
R&r, you are welcome.

Easy question, easy answer. The reason is the high efficiency and relative affordability of those. Tekton and zu are other similar options in that regard.
Find two pair of late 70's "Large Advents" and stack them. You can re-cap them, re-wire them, re-terminal them, tweek them, and you will not have spent alot of money.
If going the JBL route, go for the L-150, L-112 or later 4312 series and turn down the controls on the mid and tweet or you will burn your ears off. Others I would consider are the big PSB golds, Vandy 3, Heresy not a bad idea.
Consider a new pair of JBL L890s. They're a bit more than your budget, but they are often heavily discounted. Just keep your eyes open and see. I got my pair for $800 and free shipping.
Horn loaded speakers are a good choice. Older Altec 'Voice-of-Theater', JBL, Klipsch come to mind. I had the 4 piece Infinity RS1Bs at one point and they certainly could move a lot of air.

Anyone wanting to create volume needs to understand the speaker sensitivity rating. Currently your recommendations here range from a low of 87db to a high of 99db. This rating and the amount of power used determines the maximum volume of the system.

Every 3db lower in speaker sensitivity will require double amplifier power for the same volume capability. So if you have 50w on the 99db speaker, then the following would be the required power for lower sensitivity speakers to have that same volume capability,

96db -- 100w
93db -- 200w
90db -- 400w
87db -- 800w

IMHO, I doubt any speaker with a sensitivity below ~93db will be suitable for your situation.
You may want to check out the Tekton line of speakers.
Cerwin Wega makes R&R sound GOOD the way they're designed
Everyone, thank you for the info.
Tls49, technical information is very useful.
Look in the archive for the recent post:
"What is the best HEAVY METAL speaker?"
I'd think Vandys in that price range would be a bit laid back for rock-and-roll
Efficiency might be the key since it could keep the loudness happening with less opportunity for your amp to strain. If you really want to get loud, stop messing around with hifi speakers and buy a pair (plenty of used stuff in your price range) of the largest pro PA speakers you can find along with a powered 15" or 18" sub...and prepare to be asked to move out of the neighborhood. This will allow you to have an alternate career as a DJ where you can meet hot chicks with tats and nose rings.
Vandy's aren't for R&R. They're very very slow. I've always felt that they're only good for classical and vocals.
Here is the "What is the best HEAVY METAL speaker?" thread that Dweller was referring to.

I would recommend Cerwin Vega's, JBL's or Legacy.
Klipsch due have a hi boogie factor...probably due to their efficient nature... But they really due have an energetic, propulsive presentation... They can be very forward sounding...so if you are looking for depth/spacious sound not the most ideal...and vintage Klipsch fans are a loyal bunch...kg 4, chorus, forte etc can be had fairly affordable and resold for minimal loss if any...
I'll second or third the recommendations for the classic Klipsch speakers, with a special soft spot for the Heresey model. I thought they sounded just as good as the Forte, but were much smaller and easier to live with.

My own, personal opinion, I hate Cerwin Vega.
If you have any local audio stores near where you live, I would just go and listen to what is out there. Take your favorite music with you and enjoy the experience. It is the best way to tell if you like what you hear.
Xiekitchen

Not sure about that double stack of Advents. I set up my two pair less than a month ago. They have redone woofer surrounds and updated capacitors.

Just not that resolving and they sounded small.

Went back to my Maggie 3.6's, which are not "rock" speakers, but they blew away the Advents with the same amplification, preamp, and cd player.

Still won't sell the Advents though!

Dsper
The problem with the Cerwins imo is that they have rolled off highs. The soft dome tweeters could be the culprit. The JBL L890s use titanium tweeters, but they might be too bright for some. The Cerwins might be better to some than overly bright, and I too don't like real bright. However, I like a good deal of life in the upper octaves. Rolled off highs drive me nuts, lol.
I have a second pair of heresy's 1.5 that I hot rodded. The have stands and cables. What was done to them might arguably make them the best sounding heresy's around. Coupled with my hot rodded GTA SE 40...they sound fantastic.

Take both for 1650....pick up only....your rock and roll dreams are filled.
Bose 901. Yeah, I went there.
Buggtussel?
That pair of snell c5's is what I would be looking at; I have a friend in Minnesota that owned a pair and only played classic rock music on them and I thought they always did a great job.
I play the listed music as well and find my nola ko's and soundlab m2's handle it with no problem; exception is the price is higher than the question but if you can find used maybe the price might work.
Rock-

older speaker-wise, look no further than Infinity Crescendo series (early 1990's). These are still outstanding for Rock/Hard Rock/Metal music.

A newer design and my reference loudspeaker- Thiel CS 2.4 or CS 2.7. Yes, these will go beyond your stated budget, but, you will look no further. Plays (no pun) Rock music of all kinds, as well as, Jazz / Classical to boot.
These babies love high -power / high-current amps.

Keep me posted & Happy Listening!
Ads l910. Easy to drive, easy to listen and dynamic as hell.
So what's it going to be?
Thank you all for the inputs. Very informative.Seems like a good amount of answers are pointing towards Klipsch or JBL. I will look around and try to listen to different models.Keep the opinions coming.
You're welcome Rockanroller. That's cool you're getting something out of all of this. Klipsch and JBL are both good choices, you just have to decide which one is best for you.
Note that playing anything other than Rock and Roll through speakers like these can cause permanent damage.
$1500 gets one in Revel F12 territory...and that's a good place to be...
That's actually a good speaker from what I've heard! Thanks for mentioning that one.
Tyler Acoustics PD 15.
I've no idea why this is happening all of a sudden as there are several recent threads on this forum asking about the ideal speaker for a certain genre of music.

Examples: the best speaker for: electronia, death metal, 80s rock, etc.

This is the most common myth about speakers out there!

If the speaker is good for one genre, its good for another, plain and simple- the speaker does not care what music you play through it as long as you don't toast a driver.

Some people say you need volume or bass impact and this is certainly true- for all musical genres. Those happen to be good things that are found in good speakers. That really is the end of the story.

One is better off trying to sort out what speakers are more efficient, wider range, with the best detail and imaging, and then sorting out what sort of amp drives them best, as the latter is likely far more important, since some speakers favor tubes while others favor transistors.

I for one like to push things hard and I like tube amps, so one of the best speakers made for all types of music is the Classic Audio Loudspeakers model T-1 or T-3 (I have the T-3s), either of which are about 98 db 1 watt/1 meter, are 16 ohms (favors tubes IOW) and go down to 20Hz with no need of a subwoofer, yet are detailed and as fast as the best ESLs.
"If the speaker is good for one genre, its good for another, plain and simple"

I agree with that. I think the questions come more from teh perspective of finding speakers on a limited budget that will tend to have more performance limitations. In that case, some speakers may well be found to do better in one genre than another.

Inexpensive speakers of good quality are usually more limited in overall magnitude of output and dynamics. Or some may go louder and clearer but be less refined otherwise. In any case, there is a significant compromise somewhere.

Some will provide more potential for dynamics and output levels that benefit some forms of music, like large scale classical works, rock, metal, big band, etc.

The best strategy on a limited budget is to forgo the lowest octaves, which requires the most to do well. Lots of ways to skin the cat once the power demands of the lowest frequencies are out of the picture. For a lot of rock/pop music in particular, it may not matter much if not much occurs below 50hz or so but the rest is good. Hence a good rock/pop speaker.
Ralph,

I agree with your comments. I have been a Maggie owner since 1983 and have used them for everything from jazz, folk and rock. When feed a proper diet and not pushed beyond their capabilities they have been thoroughly enjoyable regardless of genre.

The better question asked by a poster would be, "what speakers can I push really hard without fear of failure". At least that is often the way I read question like, "What is a good rock and roll speaker"?

Thus my usual reply, Klipsch, which play loud and hard and not easily damaged. Add a sub and you have a great head banging system. Their accuracy to the source is another story.
Ray I see you have Magnepan and Klipsch. That would seem to have all the bases covered pretty well. I had Maggies for years and listened to everything on them. I would not call them "rock and roll" speakers though. I just heard the latest and greatest Maggies again this past weekend and though impressive with most everything. I'm still not sure I would call them that. Reason being that to me at least you have to be able to feel rock and roll speakers on occasion as well as hear them. With most any speakers using non dynamic drivers, its usually all hear and little or no feel in most cases. Its a subtle distinction but an important one for a rock and roller though I think.
I don't know.....my modded IIIa's and dual subs really do a great job playing all music....but rock and roll to me means grateful dead, pink floyd, talking heads and the like. There's not much black sabath or van halen going on I'm my listen room. So, for that matter, my system is very satisfying. IMO, because the Maggies are more accurate and extended it plays rock better that the Klipsch with subs. But the Maggies are not as durable...fussy with set up and is more picky about amplification. So for head bangers I alway recommend Klipsch.

BTW...sometime I run the Klipsch as a center fill like system in tandem with the Maggies. A bit low in level but just enough to fill in the mids a provide a little more slam. Believe it or not it works really well.
Also, my system page needs to be updated. I'm running rogue M120's, Audible illusions m3a, thorens td 850/mitchell techno/origin live ultra motor/Benz glider. The heresy's are powered by a GTA SE40 (soniccaps plus upgrade) melos sha1.

I'll get around to updating my page.
In an ideal world all speakers would play all kinds of music equally well. In the real world, it's sometimes a bit different.
The usual musical demands of Metal and typical chamber music can be quite different, and the same can be said for other musical genres as well.
When compromises need to made due to budget and/or space limitations, there are different speakers made with different balances of sonic assets and deficits . As no speaker at any price has yet to achieve perfect balance in all regards, it not surprising that at the lower end, the balances might be, well, less balanced. To ignore these differences can lead to less satisfaction for different purchasers with different priorities.
"Musical demands" on speakers have far more to do with output levels than styles of music, and to say that "no speaker at any price has yet to achieve perfect balance in all regards" is silly...any well designed "full range" system will play anything well, and the best play everything VERY well even at annoying levels. This is the real world...mini monitors with subs will do serious Rock and Roll and large, horn loaded, high output speakers can make softer chamber music sound amazing...I've used both types for decades and can verify this as fact. I say ignore preconceived mythology and understand that size matters (amp output, driver capability) for output level only, and recordings of even the same style can vary mightily in output...I have jazz piano trio recordings that require me to turn the sub down as the bass and kick are too hot, and electric bands that require a boost...but to think musical style will be challenging to a system based on style itself is not thinking at all.
^Sure, there's no difference at all between listening to Barber Shop Quartets and Wagner. There's no difference listening to multimiked compressed pop music and Blumlein recorded symphonic music. Solo harp music and solo drum music. There's no point in trying to make better speakers, as all speakers already play everything well.
I think not.:-)
Unsound....no one made the claim you are making. "Now back to our regularly scheduled program". ;?)
And, seemingly, there's no point not worth missing.
Yep size still matters when it comes to full range speaker output capacity, which is the main factor to consider to be able to play all kinds of music. If it can play the big stuff loud and well it can play all the rest. I think that was atmasphere's point that I agree with.

However, technology has evolved to enable somewhat more output from smaller speakers as well since that is what most people want. Although more of the same can only be better. Its all a question of how much you need. After that the rest is mostly what flavor you prefer. Most people prefer vanilla.
I think a critical element is the room, especially size, in which you plan to rock out.

If your speakers overdrive the room, the sound will likely be at best, unpleasant. And at worst, unlistenable.
I agree with most that dynamic range and ultimate volume levels might be the biggest concern. Though as has been already pointed out, often times (though not always) proper amplification can go a long way in negating that concern. Another issue is frequency response, and whether the room can handle it. Yet another issue is how well a given loudspeaker can present a satisfying soundstage and imaging. Now this last item might be more of an issue to those that listen to music that is recorded in such a manner as to preserve it, and less so if the music is not recorded with much concern for these matters. IME, classical music is more often likely to be in first category and pop music more likely to be in the second category.
Interesting thread. I think the element being not mentioned enough is that rock n roll is usually played loud and is not that sonically nuanced. Much is electric and the drums are simpler and less sophisticated. Taking this into account a listener is able to forego certain design possibly pricey features in a speaker and focus on the aspects of a speaker that highlight this music. Hi efficiency forward sounding drivers or horns do this well. In a perfect world where price was no issue it would be easy to pick a one size fits all speaker for 50K. If I want to listen to a debussy piano concerto I love my single driver full range speakers but ac/dc is not gonna shine like it would on some klipschhorns.