"Looking to buy the end of game speakers"
What does that mean?
What does that mean?
I would suggest Sonus Faber and Dynaudio and maybe PMC in keeping with a sound similar to the VA's. Which model? Well you really have to listen to the different ones. It's your ears and wallet. BTW my brother in law has your speakers and they are very nice but a little too laid back for me.
Remember with pre-owned you should be able to find them at approx a 40 - 50% discount. Discounts of more would be Magico or Raidho but over your top budget IMO.
I would again suggest going to dealers and listening for yourself. Even better would be to bring your electronics with you. Best would be an in home demo.
Good luck whatever you should decide.
Hi JugHead, the Vienna Beethoven Grands are fine VA speakers... But if you can find a pair of used Vienna Mahlers, they are far superior, and well within your budget. They are simply divine! My review of the Mahlers V1.5 was originally published on TAS 188, and should still be available on AV Guide. Let me know if you can't find it, and I will send you a cached copy.
"at that kind of money I'm looking for new. and to answer zd542s question the end of game speakers means never feeling the need to buy another pair of speakers again."
What you're attempting to do here is not plausible. First, there's so many speakers to choose from, you have to be the one to make the selection. We all have different tastes. I could recommend a pair of 10k speakers, and you may hate them.
There's also the question of what electronics you will be using. The results you get are going to be directly related to every component in the system, not just the speakers. And the more expensive and revealing the speakers are, the more important this becomes. You can't listen to any single stereo component. It has to be as part of a system.
If your goal is an 80/20 split between music and movies, I would recommend that you do a 2 channel system only. Maybe do a separate, less expensive, theatre system in a different room. If not, you are going to pay dearly for the 20% that is the theatre portion.
Most important, is you need to verify that what you want is achievable. If you can't go out and demo some gear that you know you will be able to live with, you can't expect to achieve your goal in your listening room. I know its not the easiest way to go about this, but if you really want to get the last pair of speakers that you will ever buy, you have to do it right, or it won't happen.
I doubt you will find any speaker company that uses the quality parts and man hours on a speaker then vapor sound..you can the best or almost best he offers for that money!!! He will even add parts depending upon the sound you desire. I know, as im prob gonna go buy the stiff breeze and have parts added for an extra sound.
After seeing the money that can be saved buying used I'm fine with buying used, I did find some Beethoven Grand's for 2800 in mint condition with boxes and manuals, I believe they retail at 5k. and I'm sure my a21 can handle this speaker with ease. Has anyone heard the Beethoven compared to the Mozarts? or maybe I could find an internet seller that does a 30 day in home trial with free shipping both ways? the only place I can go to listen to different speakers is Chicago and that's a 3 hour drive.
JugHead, I have heard Beethoven Grand and Mahler in the same system, being driven by a Rowland 500W M312 stereo at RMAF several years ago.... I did fall instantly in love with the Mahlers and eventually bought a pair... There was a night and day difference with Beethoven Grands... I found the latter to be fine speakers, but sounded "matter of fact" and far from the enchanting Mahlers.
Since then, Beethoven Grands have been significantly updated... You might want to ask the seller when the pair in consideration was manufactured.
Hi Jughead, the Beethovens you are considering are not likely to be the latest design. The latest Beethovens will be featured for the very first time at CES 2015 in Vegas. Here is a line item from a professional reviewers newsletter I just received this morning from VANA Ltd, Vienna Acoustic importer in North America:
System Two: [Venetian Towers] Suite 30-130
Vienna Acoustics Beethoven Concert Grand Symphony Edition, $8,500.00/pr (World premier)
For more info, you may want to give a buzz to VANA Ltd:
Phone: (425) 610-4532
Jughead, Mahlers are out of production, hence you will not find a new pair. With a little bit of patience you will eventually find a set on Audiogon or other source.
The current Vienna speaker in the same price range as Mahler is the Listz, also to be featured at CES:
System One: [Venetian Towers] Suite 30-129
Vienna Acoustics Imperial Series Liszt, $15,000.00/pr
They use technology trickled down from the current VA flagship, called DIe Muzik. Here is the Lizt Imperial page:
And here is my mostly technical discussion of my own pair of DIe Muzik:
I do have a line on some Baby Beethoven's at local stereo store and they will buy my Mozarts from me, and they do offer an upgrade policy. If I keep speakers looking and functioning new with all packing they will give me full value on speaker to upgrade. this might be the route to go, I can trade speakers every 7 or 8 months and learn what I like and don't like about the different va's.
Hi Jughead, the current model of the Baby Grands is called Baby Grand Symphony AEdition... Make sure that if you get a new pair, the vendor does not give you the previous model instead.
Inevitably, a new pair of Beethoven Baby Grands will need to be broken in... They might sound a little boxy and occasionally peaky in the beginning. Breaking might extend to about 1,000 hours. To spead up things, Whenever you are not listening to music, you can feed them white noise from an FM tuner.... Tune the device between station and let interstation hash reach the speakers at low to moderate volume.
At new, full retail with warranties, $9700 buys you a pair of Magneplanar
3.7i's and a pair of JL E112 powered subwoofers. The new x.7i line of
Magnepans are bargain-basement speakers for life. Add the powered subs
to get all the extension and slam at the bottom end. They blend well with
Maggies. As long as you can place the Maggies 4-5 feet out into the room,
I got a pair of Mag 1.7s a year ago and at my budget, that's as good as it's
going to get for me. I have a pair of small fast subs with them and a year
later still have no urge to upgrade.
Edited to add: My maggies replaced a pair of more expensive dynamic
speakers engineered to quell enclosure resonances--there were no parallel
surfaces and the sidewalls were a continuous curve with a constantly varying
radius. When I put the Maggies in place, it was a revelation at how noisy the
dynamic speakers were by comparison. With the Maggies, all you hear is the
transducers with no boxy coloration or resonances. Dynamic speakers that
get to this level of clarity generally have very elaborate and expensive
enclosures--speakers such as Wilson, Focal, Magico, YG, and premium
This is particularly an area where Magnepans exceed their dynamic
competitors at the same price points.
For dynamic speakers at your price point, based on what I heard from the
discontinued Sonus Faber Cremona M's, I'd seriously consider the
Sonus Faber Olympica II.
"I got a pair of Mag 1.7s a year ago and at my budget, that's as good as it's going to get for me."
I would say that the Magnepan is a must audition. I tried a pair of 1.7's myself and thought they were just OK. I was kind of surprised because I thought I would like them very much. Still, I think they are definitely worth an audition, given how many people really like them.
The Maggies are somewhat demanding for room placement and proper amplification. When I demo'd them, the rep used a measuring tape to place them properly. The amplification was good, but not exotic or pricey--an NAD C375BEE 150 wpc integrated amp. They beat all comers at $2K. i got a pair home and used a tape measure for setup and got similar results.
If you hear less than that at the demo, it's the setup and not the speakers. Setup is not that complicated, but it does take some diligence. Simliarly, amplification doesn't have to be expensive or exotic, but it has to be a good fit. Those 150 wpc NADs will do just fine. Me? I'm using an all-tube front end driving a 30-yr-old Perreaux PMF-150 (100wpc) power amp to great effect.
"If you hear less than that at the demo, it's the setup and not the speakers. Setup is not that complicated, but it does take some diligence. Simliarly, amplification doesn't have to be expensive or exotic, but it has to be a good fit. Those 150 wpc NADs will do just fine. Me? I'm using an all-tube front end driving a 30-yr-old Perreaux PMF-150 (100wpc) power amp to great effect."
There was no store demo to speak of. I had them in my house for a little over a year. I opted to buy them because I didn't think a store would be able to set them up right, and I have more than enough equipment to try them with. They weren't bad, I just thought they were way over rated. The speakers weaknesses became much more apparent when I put them directly next to other speakers in the same room. I think a lot of people base their opinions on old reviews. I could see them being much more competitive back in the 70's and 80's, but traditional speakers and electronics have been able to overcome many obstacles in recent years to the point where its not mandatory to use such a design to get the same qualities that only a planar speaker could provide.
I can only speak for myself. My OHM F5s are it for me save perhaps OHM F5015s if I want to go nuts someday.
I would be tempted by MBL if could be had for that price but would probably have a ripple effect and make me spend a lot more time and money getting it right again.
If I could find the right Dynaudios for my current larger room I might be tempted.
I have heard these speakers at a couple of oweners' homes, including Ryan at Vapor. They are made to order, so your best best is to maybe find someone near you who has one (if there is one) who will let you take a listen. Or hit an audio show. Hittinng something like AXPONA or RMAF may be a good use of your money too, so you can actually hear many of these suggestions. Conditions aren't always ideal, but you can get an idea of the flavor.
I know if you don't have them made custom you have a 60 day in home trial, which is always the ideal way to audition a speaker, so if I do like them I could always send them back to get more bells and whistles added. after talking with Pete at vapor audio he seems to think that the breeze would be an upgrade from my VA Mozarts, and at 2k with in home trial whats to lose? but like I said idk about bookshelf speakers? or maybe they might be perfect because I have the psa xs15se sub that hits the lows with authority!
With respect, and I truly mean that, why not spend perhaps 5K and take an extended vacation with the rest of the money?
Some of my most rewarding moments listening to music at home, were decades ago, played through a pair of Magnepan MG1's powered by a Yamaha receiver. The enormous amount of joy I was able to derive from that rather humble system is unforgettable.
Of course, I was much younger, so "endgame" was not a concept I could begin to comprehend.
I'm thinking the same thing, buy some less expensive speakers and use the rest of the money for other parts of my system. and I can remember my first system was a little 60 watt 2 ch adcom amp with an adcom pre amp with a set of Boston acoustic hd9 speakers. and I got a lot of joy outta that system. I think it would be a lot more fun trying different speakers every few years, and get back to having fun with it instead of over thinking it.