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Thanks for the compliment and recommendations. I've listened to Avior's several times and thought they sound good, but not my preference. I will look into the Egglestonworks Savoy.
I'm trying to figure out if there is a speaker that does everything the PL500's do(big soundstage, image well, no fatigue), with a little more detail. I understand most speakers have trade-offs and I may conclude that I don't want to give up what the PL500's do very well.
ricred, there are few spekers that are going to give you more, it depends on what you want for more if it is resolution and image holography then you can move up to a few other speakers some of the players here will not sound as big though.
We would invite you over for a visit we have several of the best affordable reference loudspeakers on display.
We have the Legacy Aeris which are awesome, the Paradigm Persona 9H which have greater speed and resolution over the Monitors and the KEF Blades, we also have a pair of the rarest speakers on Earth the Polymer Audio MKX-s a $68k set of speakers with the pure Acuton Diamond midrange and tweeter, amazing speakers our demos are $30k
I still think we can make some changes to your setup room tuning power conditioning and cabling that wil make you want to stay with the Monitors.
Please feel free to reach out.
Dave and Troy
Audio Doctor NJ
Yeah you've got nice speakers. What area of added detail are you looking for? If it were me I might try experimenting with some cables/interconnects to see if that can give you that last bit of detail you're looking for. Or maybe even try demoing a different preamp or DAC or something that has a reputation for excelling in the area you're looking to improve instead of changing speakers? Just some thoughts.
That said, one speaker in your price range that has continually impressed me over the years has been the Joseph Audio Pearls. If you haven't heard them it might be worth your while to check them out if you have a dealer within striking distance. If they don't do anything for you, well, then I got nuthin'. Best of luck.
A bit of an outlier suggestion here.
It looks like you just got your Clarus Crimson speaker cables, but I may suggest demoing a pair of the MIT HD90 or HD120 biwire. I think you'll get more apparent detail from a significantly quieter background.
There is a reason Magico and Wilson and others use MIT cable at shows.
Great looking system!
ricred - I understand; I realize I mentioned the HD90 but maybe the HD60 would be worth considering. Joe Abrams has a pair listed here at about $2800. Also watch ebay. I was more mentioning a relatively lower cost cable change as an alternative to changing out your speakers (if you generally like the PL500s). Demos of cables are easier than in-home demo of speakers. I’m sure the Clarus are very good in their own right, but I think the ’detail’ of the MITs is their selling point (and what it sounds like you’re looking for more of from your PL500s).
The speaker cables really do need to be changed. Clarus cables are okay at best.
We are evaluating some new cable companies so we can see.
For a quick kick replace whatever power cable you have going into your power conditioner with an Isotek Syncro, amazing power cord.
Also which power cords are you using?
Dave and Troy
Audio Doctor NJ
I recently had a home audition of Shunyata Sigma, Audience A24 SX, Clarus Crimson, and my Wireworld Silver Eclipse 7. I preferred the Clarus, followed very closely by Audience. In my system the Clarus provides the best detail without being forward, presents a wide and deep soundstage, and great front to back placement.
My interconnect cables are Audioquest Fire XLR and my power cords are Wireworld Silver Eclipse 7 with Platinum plugs. I recently compared Shunyata Sigma power cords to the Wireworld and decided to keep the Wireworld.
Cables are really a crapshoot and the only way to know what's best is to evaluate them in your own system. The problem is there are endless combinations and it's impossible to evaluate everything.
Again, everything is system dependent... Surprise...I had Wireworld Platinum in my system and compared them directly to AQ Niagara and preferred Niagara. Since the Niagara isn't current, I decided to get a home audition of the Fire. In my system the Fire had more detail without being bright. I submit my system is neutral to the dark side of neutral and the Wireworld made my system sound too dark, consequently I lost details further in the soundstage.
Honestly, after hearing the Shunyata power cords(that are supposed to be significantly better than Wireworld) I'm content with my power cords.
I’d suggest a lengthy listen to some Focal Utopias - now the Evo range is out there will be some great buys on Scala V2 and Maestro.
Magico Q3 if you like resolution, S3/5 is you want more full.
KEF Reference are a little rolled off, Blades marginally better.
Tidal, Lumen White, Kharma and others with the Accuton ceramic drivers might appeal?
You might find Raidho the sweet spot...
This veteran audiophile thinks you should look into the Wilson Yvette at 26k list.
I don’t know what bias you may or may not have for Wilson but the Yvette is a beautiful sounding speaker with plenty of mojo should you want it. It also their best looking speaker in my humble opinion.
I’m not even what you might call a Wilson guy but in a world of overpriced gear at least Wilson gets everything built to an incredible standard including the wood crates. As is well known the drivers are not exotic which bugs some people.. The main thing is the sound and it’s awesome. I’m spending way too much time listening these days.
ricred1, nice system and room. You make me want to get out my vacuum cleaner! Sounds like you have decided on a speaker change, perhaps the biggest decision with a system.
You are right about cables, the combo's and synergy possibilities are endless. However, I would echo Keithtexas that MIT's would be a big change. Not only his recomendations, but the newer 2C3D line and EVO line in the Heritage series offers some serious trickle down performance for more reasonable pricing. Good luck and it will be interesting to follow your journey for me since I own Thiels and that brand is cooked!
I’ve owned Wilson Sophia 2s, 3s, and Sasha 1s. I’ve listened to Sasha 2s. I’ve moved away from Wilson and don’t know if I’ll ever own them again. When I owned them I argued with many people about how I thought they were the best. After being exposed to different speakers, through owning several speakers after the Sasha’s and visiting RMAF a couple of years ago, I realize I don’t like the sound of Wilson speakers.
Although it seems you have chosen to forgoe the loud speaker shuffle for the moment in your last post I’d offer these suggestions as alteriors.
Are you at the top of the Monitor Audio food chain? I’d think the default move would be to step up in that line a bit more. Or a lot more, given you like what you’re getting now but want something well, er, more.
If however it is different that you seek. Sticking around the same level of kit in other brands ought to give you plenty to consider.
Might be all ya need is to add a sub or two.
Thru the years, what I’ve come to grasp is eyeing items well above my available retail funding and looking at those used items in great condition I’d likely not be able to buy new has to be addressed before I can make a solid decision. Ala, $40 K to $50K sp[krs for 20 – 30K. or the like.
Could be too, just another amp or another amp type, might settle things for ya.
I found in myself, changing from what I enjoy to something new or merely different usually winds up being quite close to what I had just a while ago, sonically speaking, ‘cept with different names on it all. The only time things got really different was when I went from all SS to tube pre and SS amp initially, but later to an all Tube setup. Something in ultra linear so mating up with speakers was not the ordeal it could have been with SET or SET-ish tube amps which would have demanded much higher eff speakers.
I found it more than interesting what a quality tube amp putting out 60wpc or more could yield without swaping out speakers.
I feel you have more options than you think you do at the moment.
They include making siggnificant upgrades in wires as was said. IMO I tend to agree, $5K or more for a freaking wire is a tuff pill to swallow. That was of course, until I heard what $10K worth of wires and a $1300 USB to SPDIF converter actually did to the sound. It was a 2K SPDIF; 4K power cord; and a pr of 4K ICs. Analog wires were both Nordost. The DATA line was one I simply do not recall but resembled a tiny thin metal wire.
It was a startling performance increase. Unquestionably!
I recently compared my Jeff Rowland 625 S2 to the PS Audi BHK 300 amp, Ayre, and Bryston amplifiers. I prefer my 625 S2. I'm interested in comparing different preamps to my Jeff Rowland Corus preamp, but I need something with HT bypass. I think my requirement for HT bypass prevents me from getting an integrated amplifier.?
After several months I think I can finally say I'm done. I asked what's next at the being of the year and this is what I've been doing:
I listened to several amps, speakers, and different cables over the past five months. The amps and cables were auditioned in my own system. I listened to several speakers to include Paradigm Persona 7Fs, Wilson Audio Sasha 2s, Legacy Audio, and a few more. I submit several of them sound really good, but nothing in my price range that made me want to change speakers. My next venture was with amplifiers. I evaluated the PS Audio BHK 300 mono-amps, Bryston 4Bsst2, and the Bel Canto ref 600 in my system. I listened to the Gryphon 300 and T+A at an audio show. My amplifier experience really earned my respect for my Jeff Rowland 625 S2 amplifier and I decided to keep it. Finally I started auditioning cables, to include power cords. I ended up changing to Audioquest Hurricane and Tornado power cords. I went from Wireworld Platinum XLR cables to Audioquest Fire XLRs. The only thing left to explore were speaker cables. I had Wireworld Silver Eclipse 7 speaker cable. I listened to Shunyata Alpha and Sigma, Audience AU24 SX, Audioquest Oak, Audioquest Redwood, and Clarus Crimson speaker cables. The Clarus isn't well known and was recommended to me by a Monitor Audio Distributor. The Clarus Crimson worked best in my system and I purchased them. It's been a long and fun process! I'm pretty confident that I'm done for some time to come!
Just got to comment on your point, I listened to the Gryphon 300 and T+A at an audio show. My amplifier experience really earned my respect for my Jeff Rowland 625 S2 amplifier and I decided to keep it.
The only way to know the sound quality of one of these uber amps is to compare these products to your Rowland gear.
Used to sell Rowland gear and it is excellent it is however, very creamy and lacks in our opionion some of the speed and transparency of the Gryphon and T+A gear the only way to know for certain is to listen to it in your system.
It is impossible to know at an audio show what is doing what, on different speakers, source components, cabling and room acoustics? You can only judge the sound of a complete system it is only by switching out gear can you hear what is doing what.
Most people who have compared the T+A PA 3100 integrated to Pass separates, or many other companies products prefered the T+A gear by a long shot, The PS gear, Bel Canto and Bryston are not in this level of sound quality, build quality or attention to detail that the uber products do, and the Rowland gear is warmer and more involving then the Bryston and Bel Canto gear.
Other than that and perhaps an even better source there isn’t much more you can do, other than vibration reduction and room tunning.
Dave and Troy
Audio Doctor NJ
I agree with you! The only way to know the sound quality of amps is to compare them in my system against the Rowland. I've compared several amps to the Rowland in my system and decided to keep the Rowland. There is one part of the equation that I also consider that I haven't talked about. When I evaluate components as possible replacements, I also take into consideration is it worth losing money on what I currently own to get something new. e.g. I listened to the Paradigm Personas 7F and submit they sound good. Is it worth me selling my speakers at a loss and paying an additional $10K or more to get them... my answer is no. Now, if I could sell my speakers and pay $2K-$3k for the Personas 7Fs, that changes the equation. When I evaluated cables, because of the sonic differences and relatively minor cost to change from the Wireworld to Audioquest, it made sense to me. When you already own decent gear a change only make sense when the sonic benefits outweigh the cost.
Curious what you ended up doing with the PL500. I am in the UK abd have had great pleasure with my Modified AR9 speakers being driven by a full Musical Fidelity KW1000 system. I have since moved to the Lyngdorf TDAi3400 all in one box and is loving the speakers even more. I have the itch and demo'ed a pair of PL300 the left me rather disappointed in their lack of detail and top end drive. Seems the tweeters are attenuated to such levels that the sound sounded rather dark. I only opted to hear the 300 at the 500 did not arrive in time for the demo and I was led to believe the 300 and 500 have similar character???
I now await the arrival of the PL500 at the dealer and I am taking my Lyngdorf to the demo as the Naim units that they were driving the PL300 did not do them any justice either.
The good thing about the Lyngdorf is the roomperfect and ability to trim the bass and treble so hoping this might help with the Monitor Audio voicing???
I like the look of the pl500 but still in doubt about its sonics compared to my AR9 or even a pair of Dynaudio Confidence C4.....
Is this the same issue you have experience with your PL500 that you are describing as "clarity or detail"? The 500 have fallen in prices here, drastically and I was keen to buy a pair. Am I on route to a big mistake???
There are no absolutes in Audio, only preferences. I've owned Wilson Audio Sophia 2s, 3s, and Sasha's. I've owned Audio Physics, Revel, Aerial, Artemis EOS, Mirage M1s, and listened to Dynaudio, Raidho, Magico, YG, KEF, Paradigm 7Fs, and Vivid Audio speakers. I purchased the PL500s because I had the opportunity to listen to them in my room, with my own equipment prior to purchasing. I recently thought about replacing them, but after listening to several speakers, the only speakers that I preferred over the PL500s were $70K Vivid Audio G1s and they are out of my price range. I personally wouldn't take Dynaudio C4s over MA PL500s.
Speakers are about finding the right components to compliment them based on an individuals preferred sound. To my ears the PL500s are very close to neutral or maybe on the slightly dark side of neutral. In my system, in my room they are chameleon like, with the recording dictating what type of sound they produce. They can sound dark, bright, big, or small depending on the recording. They disappear, have great detail, great soundstage and imaging. More importantly to my ears instruments have great tonality and they are very musical. The big mistake we make is letting someone tell us what sounds good based on popularity or what's hot in audio. A dealer recently told me don't let anyone convince you that the PL500 speakers aren't very good. All that being said, only yours ears can decide. I hope this helps!
Many thanks. Appreciated.
Agree, the final decision will come from somewhere between my two ears but most importantly from the how do I FEEL when I hear them playing the music I like. I am listening to Ernest Rangling - Soulful Moments as I type and the Lyngdorf/AR9 combination is close to heaven, but my speakers are old and want to tip my toes into more modern speakers. Have had B&W-703/803, KEF Ref, Gershman, TDL, SF Cremona, JBL Ti, along the way. The demo of the 300 did not leave me with the feeling I thought they would stir but only with the feeling that my AR9's are great.
I guess I would wait for the PL500 to arrive this week to go back for a session armed with the same test discs and my Amplifier. I dont think i would struggle with the Bass/Mid, just the really top end(Tweeter) - I listen to all genres and some caribbean music need the really high top end to do them justice which the 300 did not give me. I really hope the voicing is better in the 500.