totem forests will give you much more bass or you will need to add a sub
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I owned the Model 1s (not signature) and my impression was similar, very nice but lacking bass. Not familiar with the Audience speakers but am with the older Contour 1.3s which had a very rich, robust sound. For me it's no contest, the Dynaudios win hands down.
That being said, I'm now using a pair of Revel M-20s. These are the best monitors I've had in my system.
i listened to the dynaudio's before and i prefer the model 1's. i also prefer the model 1's to the dynaudio special 25's and the totems are less than 1/2 the price. if you need more bass, get a little rel sub to compliment the model 1's. thats what i did in my last house. i sold my model 1's and arros and got a couple of pairs of totem mani 2's. if you want bass from a monitor speaker and you like totem speakers, the mani's are the way to go.
Regarding your observations on the Model 1. I use to own a pair of the original Model 1s that I paired successfully with a REL sub. I later replaced the Model 1 with a pair of JMR Trentes. As much as I like the Trente I have never got them to mate quite as seamlessly as I did with the totem. I might be interested in trying the Model 1 Sig...or even the Mani. Do you think that a model 1 sig with a good subwoofer match would be as good as the Mani alone....or the mani matched with my sub?
I know you didn't address your question to me - but I'm running Mani-2's with a Rel Storm III and it's a pretty unbeatable combination. Even though the Mani's can play quite nicely with no sub, they integrate perfectly and go to a whole 'nother level with it. I cross over at 31Hz.
I have no experience with Mod 1's, but previously had Sttaf's paired with the Rel. Integration was perfect and it was a very nice setup. Before I got the Mani's I considered the Mod 1, and in discussion with Totem was told the 1's have much tighter bass than the Staff (though not as deep - 38hz vs 50hz rolloff pt), and better mid-hi, so paired with the sub . . you can do the math. I'm not sure if this gets you to the level of the Manis with a sub or without though.
it all depends on the size of your room. if you have a 13 x 13 x 8 ft room, a pair of mani's would generate enough bass. if you are talkng about a 13 x 24ft room, then you will need a sub. there is plenty of bass but the room will dictate how it will perform. as for subs, i used the rel with my model 1's and didn't use a crossover for the speakers, i let them run full range (as i do my mani's) and i used a 50hz crossover on the sub.
as for your arc driving the mani's, especially if you want a solid bottom end sound, it is too small. i had a 100 watt mcintosh amp hooked up to both my model 1's when i had them and then the mani's and it was not a good fit. my 200 watt classe does a very good job with the mani's and more would even be better. the other option is to use a sub and crossover at 40 or 50hz at the mani's so your amp doesn't need all that power to drive the woofers.
Thanks everybody. That settles it in favour of the Totems. I'll try out room placement alterations to get better bass; the subwoofer may just be a little too much for my room. Remarkable what Totem does with components sourced from outside - bring in a Dynaudio midrange/bass and a Seas tweeter, and make a better speaker.
I am listening to a pair of Model 1 now and was curious if the Signatures would give an "appreciable" difference compared to the older version. The bass evidently does not go low but overall the mids and highs are pretty good. Coherency, imaging and musicality are above average for this small little speaker.
Any advice on the comparison between the Model 1 and Model 1 Signature would be appreciated.