Dali Zensor 1
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Your amp should drive just about any speaker with a nominal impedance of 8 Ohms in a small room. So that means hundreds of them. Also, what's the budget? The Joseph Audio Pulsar sure is a very nice speaker but at 7K could be out of your budget. If it is, no point in recommending this one. But it sure sounds nice!
Also, what do you mean "unfussy"? All speakers are fussy and dependent upon proper placement in a room. Since most are ported in one way or another, we would we need to know if you intend in placing it on shelf or stands? Front or rear ports become absolutely critical.
A little more information and we'll be able to give you much more meaningful advice and avoid the popularity contest.
Hi all, thanks. A bit more info, then: the budget would be anywhere from 500 to 2000 (although I worry a bit about way outclassing the components with the speakers?) I can't change amp because of space restrictions. The speakers will be on stands, probably on either side of a couch. I can maybe get them out from the wall by a foot or a foot and a half. I will listen to mostly jazz, acoustic, vocals.
Thanks for the add'l info. I wouldn't worry too much about the speakers outclassing the components. As long as the amp puts out adequate power to drive a pair without distortion or clipping, your in business. Besides things may change and you may upgrade the amp some day. Since speakers are usually the most expensive item in a system, it is easier and cheaper to upgrade electronics later. So I am a believer in getting the best pair of speakers you can afford now.
That being said, I still contend that you should be looking at 8 Ohm speakers with a higher sensitivity rating. Using stands, about a foot and a half from the rear walls, will allow you to look at either front or rear ported. I would suggest you check out the Focal 806V and 807V's that are 8 ohms at 90/92 db sensitivity respectively. That makes them very efficient with lower wattage amps, front ported so you don't need to worry if you only get a foot from the back wall and should sound very nice for acoustic and vocals. Maybe a tad forward though for jazz.
If you really want a bargain, that should work on all counts, check out this link for the Focal Profile 908's.
Hope this helps in your search.
Thanks, I will look at all of these. If anyone has ideas too about easy to drive speakers that are really small (even among stand mounts) that would be great too. I think I read that smaller boxes tend to be harder to drive, although it looks like the PMC DB1 might be one that is tiny and doesn't take a lot of power. I am not sure about that.
I am not in any rush, so thinking I might compile a list of possibilities and then wait to see if anything comes up used for a good price. Other than on Audiogon, any tips about where I should look for used equipment?
With many, many thanks-
A speaker company that has a great rep is Ascend Acoustics. Their best bookshelf was the Sierra 1, coming in several handsome finishes and starting at about 900. But they just released a new model that surpasses the '1', called the "2"(hey, no one said they were creative in the name department) for around 1500.
The unique thing about this company is it's based around an internet direct model, so you don't have to pay a middle man. The "1" can be has an option for 2 different tweeters, one a ribbon type which has more extension. I've got a Parasound amp, and I'd think either way would work well with Parasound, it just depends on your tastes.
I've got mainly Paradigm speakers, and though excellent sounding, you have to spend a lot more to get a decent bookshelf from them.
You will not find another site with as many options.
But there are a few sites like:
canuckaudiomart dot com
audioasylum dot com
audiocircle dot com
Make sure that the speakers that you get have at least 89db sensitivity. That way your will have gobs of power with that amp to drive the speakers and they will sound dynamic.
Sorry, I just noticed that the Z amp is 45 wpc. That may not be a good match for the above Sierra 1 I suggested after all if you plan to drive them to high levels, but normal listening levels would be fine. I'd phone whichever manufacturer/dealer you are interested in to discuss your amp as well as the speakers.