Direct reflect speakers are always better for the small room than dipole
Try Spendor FL6, Totem Forest or JM Lab Elecra 901
or if you need monitors than try Viena Accoustics Haydn or Totem Tabu.
You think YOU have a small room. Try 8'x12'. That's my situation. I will be using Coincident Partial Eclipse speakers.
I had a pair of Proac 1.5's in a 10x10 room.
Fantastic imaging, in nearfield listening. Also, a
very smoothe natural sound.New they are $3000, used around
You mention your listening distance, but it also matters along which wall the speakers are placed and how far from the wall they can be placed. Your listening distance is definitely near field, so large woofers (over 6 1/2")generally won't work. Rear firing ports or tweeters may be a problem if placed too close to rear wall. Room damping/liveliness are also signifcant variables.
Where do you live? If you are anywhere near Milwaukee, I can let you try out a pair of ProAc Response 1.5 (gorgeous, and for sale on audiogon), or a pair of Red Rose R3, but I'm not letting go of those (at least not at this time). Both are winners in most smaller spaces: they are versatile with ability to play delicately or to really rock.
I own ProAc Tablette 50 Signatures and Sonus Faber Concertinos, and use them in a 12 x 16 room. While far under the budget you have set, they both perform very well. I use them with a subwoofer.
For your budget, you may also want to consider Merlin TSMs or VSMs. Used, they are in the $1100 to $2500 range.
Good luck and happy listening!
I second the Audio Physic Sparks.
I have 12*14 room and pair of Proac 1.5 along 14' wall.
I had a chance to compare A to B with Audio Physic Sparks - Proac is a cleaner winner. Proac is very sensitive to placement, but I got a great result.
But in any case try not to buy without listening first.
Thanks one and all for the great suggestions. Living in Denver, I have a few places that I can audition speakers, so this helps me quite a bit! I'm making a list of speakers to research. A couple of my concerns are, 1) speaker efficiency, since I only have about 100 watts per side at 4 ohms, and 2) getting a full range speaker, since I can't use a sub. It sure helps to get some 1st hand opinions versus a bunch of sales hype!! John
Stereomaniac I don't think your room is that small especially if you place the speakers firing into the 30 feet. As audiojerry stated it's not just how far you listen. If you were six feet away from your speakers sitting a foot away from the back wall you'd encounter alot of reflection of sound that you wouldn't encounter if the walls were 24 feet away.
However, if you are placing your speakers so that they fire into the 12 foot part then your speaker choices would be different.
Anyway, if you were to place your speakers so they fire into the 30 feet of your room, I would consider a floor standing speaker. That will alleviate a lot of your subwoofer concerns. Here are some contenders: Dynaudio Contour 1.8, Proac Response 1.5's, and B&W 804's. If I were in your shoes these would be what I would listen to. The Dyaudio's may need more power than you have.
IF you decide to go the monitor route, try the smaller speakers of the above ones I mentioned in the same line.
I'm sure others can offer their advice as well. Good luck
The Fact is, room size in Europe is even smaller!
I think Europeans have the upper hand with regard to
Designing Speakers for small rooms. JMLABS I hear designed there Mezzo speaker for the small room. I have auditioned the JMLAB Mezzo in a small room and it was Fabulous...
Has anybody had any experience with Krix speakers, specifically the Lyrix model? I heard them locally and they sounded very good. I wonder how they would compare to some of the suggestions here, i.e. the Proac 1.5 speakers.
I've read about the Krix,but haven't heard them. I will also agree with the [Audio Physics],either the Sparks or the Tempos. Both are exclnt. near field and also do well if you ever have more room. Sounds like your entire soundspace might prefer the Tempo's a bit more than the Sparks, simply due to the large overall room volume. Well worth hunting down a listen.
I have a room 12x20 with 8 foot ceilings and like you I am limited by the seating arrangement so that I am about 9 feet from my speakers. I have Meadowlark Shearwater Hot Rods with a Rogue 99/88. The detail and sound stage are very nice with this combo. I have also listened to the Audio Physics Spark III with the Rogue Integrated and enjoyed that also. Good luck.
I have a small room and listen in nearfield, as well. I am amazed at the performance of my Harbeth C7ES monitors. They evolved, like other BBC babies like Spendor, from the demands of sound engineers who spend hours in close quarters trying to (hopefully) "get it right." This kind of accuracy is not for everyone's taste, as some enjoy hearing the speakers. You really should try to demo something like a Spendor there in Denver. If this type of accuracy is what you want, you will never be happier. There are ways to home demo Harbeths if you are willing to go to the trouble. Good luck. Charlie