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Wow- this is exactly the situation I found myself in- room is 11 x 14. I own Karl Schuemann's amazing Ultimate Monitors (Audiomachina). Sadly no longer in production and somewhat of a niche product to be sure; they feature a sealed enclosure, first-order series crossover, carbon fiber cabinet with drivers mounted on an aluminum baffle, waveguide on the tweeter, 6 inch wide baffle. Anyway sorry for the rambling but I listen approximately 8 feet away and they totally disappear. They replaced Avalon Diamonds and I am very happy with them.
I had the opportunity to hear the Sason speakers from Ridge Street Audio at our NEWAS meeting. Not only did the speakers sound fantastic in a difficult room but Robert and Steve were great to work with and be around. Check out the review from one of our group on the page. It is a large monitor speaker but with the granite enclosure they weigh in at 137 pounds each! Good design work and execution with great support. What more could you ask for.
Thanks for the responses so far. There are more options than I originally envisioned. There is nothing inherently wrong with my current WP7 setup. Great bass, dynamics, soundstaging, detail. Don't get me wrong, I would certainly consider monitors but it might be difficult for me to go back to greatly reduced bass and dynamics of most monitors. Not-too-tall loorstanders with small footprints like the WP7's have worked well in my room. Thanks again.
1. What are your room dimensions?
2. How far apart are your WP 7's
3. How far back are you now?
If you fall within the guidelines set by Wilson Audio of distance from tweeter to tweeter X 1.1 to 1.3 to give you the listening position......and provided your speakers are 4-5 feet from the front wall and at least 30 inches form each side wall I wouldn't change anything given that you are happy with the sound. I might suggest however that in a small room you should consider giving up your sub as the WP 7 IMO produces plenty of bass and your sub could be producing room nodes.....or are your walls treated?
There are several nice options that come out of the professional studio environment. I can personally recommend passive ATC 7s or 11s and active 16As and 20As. These are pro studio monitors designed for small mixing rooms with nearfield sound. Very neutral and honest of the recording source. Tannoy also makes a similar line. I only see them in the UK at home studios of musician friends and you should inquire about their US distribution. ATC products are represented by a pro equipment distributor out of Las Vegas and they are wonderful to work with in sizing the equipment to a room.
Blue Sky Audio also makes several studio grade products. Their active EXO is a steal at $200 to 400 and is one of the few products that really compressed MP3 files sound great on. I always use these as a reference speaker to preview iPod oriented mixes.
If you are looking at more traditional consumer home electronics, Zu Tones are a very efficient speaker that can be played in small spaces. I do not own these, and they are sold directly via www.zucable.com under a 60 day return policy, but I have heard them at numerous shows and was impressed at their ability to recreate music at low volumes. Other small speakers are Paradigm Atoms and Studio 20s which deliver a great deal of musicality for their money. If you desire a more relaxed British sound, with good mids and vocals, I would recommend the new B & W 685 speakers, a Chinese made version with many of the same characteristics as their noted 800 series.
what distance constitutes nearfield listening (as opposed to mid field?)
Right now my speakers are 6.5 - 7 feet from the listening position.
I am considering getting another speaker in house that according to the
review needs 10-12 feet to sound their best, so I'm kind of in a dillemma
over whether a superior speaker that is too close will be better than an already excellent speaker that sounds just right at that distance.
I actually at one point had my current speakers in a larger room, and they actually sounded best sitting approximately at the distance I am now.
You should consider the YG Acoustics Kipod. There is another Agoner that recently sold his WP7s and bought the Kipod Studios and was very happy. The Kipod Main Modules with stands retail for $18500. They also mate very well with the JL Audio sub. We have the Kipod Studio's set up with an F113 in our showroom.
I am the YG Acoustics dealer in Texas. Email me if I can help in any way.
Rlawry, I've been wondering what the Watt/Puppies would be like in a small room?
I currently enjoying the Duettes. The cable/resistor package allows the Duettes to become less affected by surroundings at the expense of the 'size' of the presentation.
The Duettes go low enough for my small space, but I can only dream of how a pair of Watt/Puppies would sound. It sounds like space is no issue for you, you may want to read the latest issue of HiFi+, Roy Gregory is playing around with the Duettes and the Watchdog subwoofer(s). He alludes to getting a pair of Watchdog subs to review with the Duettes in the future.