Small and Excellent Speakers


After demoing the new B&W Signature Diamond speakers, I'm convinced that small is not always bad. Their limited edition speakers are a 2-way floor standing loudspeaker with an effortless and sweat sound. Their Dimensions are:
36.6 x 9.1 x 14.8 (H x D x W) in inches. Weight: 55 lbs. Unfortnuately they are $18,000/pair.

I am looking to replace a set of 1991 JBL L7 loudspeakers with a smaller set of floor standing loudspeakers. They will be driven with a McIntosh MC402 solid state power amp (400w) and a McIntosh C2200 tube preamp.

Question for all:
Are there other small-footprint speakers that sound excellent and are less than $5,000?

Thank you.
-Greg
fremonthills
I forgot to mention that my listening taste are a follows:

Jazz: 85%
Pop/Rock: 10%
Classical: 5%

If the speakers can produce frequency responses down to 40hz, I'll be happy. I'm more interested in clean, clear voicings, rather than bass slam.

Thanks again for your feedback.
-Greg
Check out Green Mountain Audio. His designs are not for everyone, but the sound is glorious.
Merlin TSM will blow you away detail, tight bass Amazing speaker for a small speaker. Put them on your short list
Wait a minute, why are you mating such expensive amps with affordable loudspeakers? But loudspeakers from wilson Benesch or Totem should fit your needs quite well. Hope this helps.
Cheers
Alexander
My listening percentages are very close to your own. I have Dynaudio Focus 220s which are not bookshelves but I think sound great with Jazz. I like the Dynaudio line, especially the Focus and Confidence series. The Dynaudio Confidence C1 is an awesome sounding speaker that can be found used at your price point. Although I have never heard them, what about Harbeth's as an option?
Proac Response 2. You can get a pair for less than $1,000 now.
You might want to look at some ATC speakers.
You mentioned small footprint. I am totally biased, but the Gallo Ref. 3.1s are a small-footprint speaker with ENORMOUS sound capability. And you can buy them from Audiogon for $1400-2500/pr. - well within your budget.

Research them, I think you'll be impressed...

-RW-
there are lots...including your L7's
Thiel 1.6s. With quality electronics, these are all you may need.
Post removed 
Eventus audio Metis.magical midrange.Do not know whether you could find it used,though.If you listen to a lot of vocals and jazz,this is all you need
Harbeth Compact 7es3.
Greg, check out the Morrison Audio Model 7 speakers. These small-footprint point-source omni-directional speakers are unlike the conventional box design. They image like crazy: they sonically "disappear", and there is no endless searching for the "sweet spot" in the listening space. They are considerably under $5000!

Check them out at http://www.morrisonaudio.com
LSA Monitors....can upgrade as money allows.
KCS new SEAS exotic equiped loudspeakers. Retail $4000 incs shipping these since factory direct compare to others $12000 models. They do not require lots of power but I used on my Audio Valve challengers 180 watts with great results. The KCS exotic is point source phase and time correct.
Thanks for all of the suggestions. I just went through last year's Absolute Sound's Buying Guide.

http://www.avguide.com/features/buyers-guides/2007-tas-editors-choice.php

Some of the speakers suggested here are also mentioned in their list.

What do you folks think about the following speakers:

Thiel CS2.4 - it seems that these are very hard to positon, but when set up properly really sound great($5,000).

PSB Sychrony One - these are fairly new and wouldn't be in last year's reviews, but they seem to have great reviews this year ($4,500).

I've not auditioned them, but they are on my short list.

-Greg
With the amp and preamp that you have and price range, the B&W N802. About the size of the Signature and the B&W sound.
Some may argue with the quality of the Mac sound, but most would agree the MC402 and C2200 are nice equipment. And yes, I should be pairing them with the likes of Wilson Watt/Puppies or B&W 802Ds. But frankly, I really don’t want a huge set of speakers.

Is it possible to get a great sounding set of speakers that match my amp and preamp and are no more than 40 inches (101 cm) tall for under $5,000?

-Greg
I'm not sure what else you need to be told. The answer is...Yes!
Haven't heard the Thiel 2.4s but used the 1.6s with BAT 300X-SE and was in heaven (bedroom system).
And, no, they are not "bright" sounding.
your L7's will play in the league of the speakers mentioned in the Absolute Sound reviews...save yoour money
When set up as JBL recommends, the L7s are very fine speakers: accurate down to 30 hz, with a good detailed sound stage; they can also blow the roof off my house. Since our move to a smaller home, I'm looking for a smaller speaker.

Thanks to all of you for the fine feedback. I have a lot of stuff to audition.

-Greg
Some may argue with the quality of the Mac sound, but most would agree the MC402 and C2200 are nice equipment. And yes, I should be pairing them with the likes of Wilson Watt/Puppies or B&W 802Ds. But frankly, I really don’t want a huge set of speakers.

Is it possible to get a great sounding set of speakers that match my amp and preamp and are no more than 40 inches (101 cm) tall for under $5,000

Greg,

Please re-read my post. If you are patient you can buy Nautilus 802's ("N802") for your target price. They are the size that you are looking for and have the B&W sound. I had N801's and now Signature 800's (neither of which are diamonds) and have never regretted it. The Nautilus series were just before the Diamonds and not very old. These are outstanding speakers.

Here is a pair that just sold:

http://www.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/cls.pl?spkrfull&1225234336&/B-W-802-Nautilus-Light-natural

-Greg
Thanks for the info, Tigerwood. I was not very familiar with the N802 model.

-Greg
Ohm 100 series 3 or Micro Walsh.

The Walsh style drivers provide a large surface radiating area in a very small footprint and produce a big sound in accordance that is more like much larger speaks but in a smaller package.

Midrange/vocals are fantastic as is low end. These will fill your room with sound in a very unique way and go loud with ease.
Check out KEF Reference 201/2 Loudspeakers.
http://www.kef.com/products/reference06/US/productRange_201/default.aspx
http://www.soundstage.com/revequip/kef_2012.htm
Thanks, Tomer. We have a few KEF dealers nearby. I'll give them a listen.

-Greg

FWIW: I'm a KEF 201 Ref owner (Mk-I).
The 201s are excellent, balanced speakers but are not as articulate at low volume as my Thiel 1.6s.
What about ATC SCM40 - sealed box with max SPL 112 dB?