Where to hear ATC speakers


I'm intrigued by all the discussion of ATC speakers. I live in NYC, and I can't find anywhere to demo any model, let alone the sctive SCM40s I want to hear.  Anybody know a place?

Also listening to Wilson Sabrina and Vandersteen Quattro CT.   My Thiel 3.6s I've had since 1994 may have bitten the dust.
ahofer
Here is the dealer list
http://www.lonemountainaudio.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/ATC-HiFi-Consumer-Dealers-112718.pdf

Not much on the east coast dealer's web sites.

Seems cheaper to fly to UK and buy there.
Post removed 
We have Atc, Quad, Dali, Paradigm, Elac, Legacy and Kef

Yogiboy and we are 3 miles outside of Nyc which makes us much closer then PA.

Www.audiodoctor.com/wp   
about us brands new beta site

Dave and Troy
Audio Doctor NJ Atc dealer
You can still get your Thiels serviced by Coherent Source Services in KY.  It's run by a long time Thiel employee.  I've got Thiels and ATCs and you can't go wrong with either.  I find I prefer the Thiels at lower volumes and for smaller scale, acoustic music.  The ATCs have a dynamic realism that few, if any, passive home speakers can match.  If you decide to go with ATC or some other high order crossover speaker I'd be curious if you feel you've lost something significant.  Of the speakers you mentioned I think only Vandersteen has a first-order, phase correct approach.
A comparison of active and passive ATCs in the same room would be  pretty attractive. Often folks say there is a striking difference, but it would be nice to hear with one's own ears.
I heard them at AXPONA last year and was very impressed.
I agree with Bubba after hearing them at Axpona also.

Simple in appearance but with the distinct look of quality, and to my ears an excellent performer.
While I don’t own ATC’s per se I do have a pair of Proac Studio 3’s which share the same ATC drivers (sans tweeters) as the SCM50 housed in a BBC style cabinet. Best Proacs I have owned among quite a few. I would really like to hear a pair of the SCM50 asl’s.
If you want to buy ATC's, check out Goodwin's High End in Waltham (Boston).  Good guys, knowledgeable and straight-forward.
seigen's link shows two dealers right next to you (Brooklyn and New Jersey). Call in advance.
Glupson Audio Doctor is currently the only NYC consumer dealer the other dealer is a pro dealer.

Dave and Troy
Audio Doctor NJ ATC dealers
Would be nice if all of us had an ATC monitor/speaker at home as a common reference. I have the 12 (desktop) and 150 (main) models. Admit I listen to lots of others but they're always my references. Control, precision, dynamics, headroom, looks.
Wouldn't  you like to hear them at home with a
60 day satisfaction guarantee?I don't see any mention of restocking fees but i would confirm with them prior to ordering
https://www.musicdirect.com/Return-Policy

https://www.musicdirect.com/speakers/ATC-SCM40a-Active-Tower-Speakers
I was the one who did that demo at AXPONA.  The active advantage is pretty clear, but a lot of folks love those amps and cables!   

For NYC demo, I would call George at Innovative Audio.  They have 19s now and we are in the process of trying to get them going. Dealers today want to sell what people ask for, so the more calls they get, the greater chance they will stock ATC.

Brad
Lone Mountain Audio ATC USA  
Goodwins outside of Boston

I have the 19v2s. Best small speaker I've heard.
BTW, regarding dealers in your area, the pro guys do not sell the consumer models and vice versa.  The level of customer service of the two different types of dealers is completely opposite.  Pros only sell flat black painted monitors, no woods, veneers or grilles or anything like that.  They also sell only monitors that need stands.  The stands recommended in pro are the ugliest things ever, super heavy welded steel black square tubes.  In Consumer, we have nice looking floor standing "tower" models, as no pro model would ever pass a wife's approval or survive children touching the drivers.  

Brad
Lone Mountain Audio  
Just buy your woman some diamonds and the pro will pass. Real looks.
audiotroy,

I understand now about consumer vs. pro dealers. When I looked dealers in the area up, I did not pay attention to that. I stand corrected. Unless OP is also interested in pro items.
Thanks for all the advice, and thanks to the dealers who reached out.  Just to respond to some of the comments above:
1) I looked at the dealer locator, but the public websites of the two dealers in the area didn't suggest anything about ATC, let alone availability of demos of the models I might be interested in.

2) I have been speaking with Coherent.  They seem to want me to self-serve repairs, which I'm ill-equipped to do.  I believe it is the crossover that is fried.
3) MusicDirect does not extend their return policy to ATC special orders.  I spoke with them.  Neither does Sweetwater.

4) The only ones I've auditioned were the Wilsons.  Very impressive image and liveliness, awesome vocal timbre, but I got the impression they might be a little fatiguing over a lot of listening.  It's almost as if the Wilsons push the image towards you, whereas my Thiels tended to create a solid image at speaker position and behind - more of an audience position.

I listen most critically to classical chamber music (my wife plays viola and I get a lot of live comparison time) and jazz (I went to Berklee and gigged a bit in my youth, before turning to finance), some orchestral and rock.  I'm listening to music, passively or in a focused way, almost all the time I'm home and awake.  I like to hear the instruments laid out in front of me, as if on stage or a small venue, each in their spot, not popping out and retreating (some mixes are deadly this way).  But I'm also cognizant of the fact that one tends to grow accustomed to a certain sound, even inaccurate.
I have a pair of the little active KEFs, and they create a really nice image. Small-scale, though.  In general, active speakers make a ton of sense, side-stepping, as they do, the first order crossover complications.

I have a server with about 1200 titles, roughly 250 High-res of one sort or another and the rest redbook.  And Tidal.
love your detailed requirements list and thoughts OP
the active filters do not sidestep the first order phase issue, they just move the steep slope filters and phase shift upstream
try to go listen to the Quattros, Jim Thiel and Vandersteen cut from same cloth. I own both. and as mentioned get time in front of ATC speakers ( yes the unobtrusive black no fuss models ) in das studio, they certainly have many virtues.
your reference back to Viola unamplified is rare, most people chase tail trying to correct for all the aberations in the chain, including microphones....enjoy the music !!!!!
ahofer

Here is the new beta website for you to see

www.audiodoctor.com/wp

go to about us page and see brands

please note this is beta so it is not done yet

as per Wilson's being fatiguing and image  being too forward that will depend on how they are being driven and setup, the Wilson's are very smooth in the top and so are the ATC both speakers throw a big soundstage.

We had a client runing the ATC SCM 40 MK II on an all Naim rig and the sound was amazing, it sounded like your were in the recording studio with a live band, with the famous punchy warm and full bodied sound of the Naim.

ATC makes a fantastic speaker it will all come down to what you are trying to create. 

Dave and Troy
Audio Doctor NJ ATC dealers


I'm not very technical, but here's ATC's claim:

" Active filters allow independent control of level and phase(time). This is not possible with passive crossovers. With a passive crossover any changes you make to the circuit affect both level and phase. The benefit this allows is that we can adjust for the crossover to have a perfect magnitude response and phase response. The result is that the stereo imaging is much more stable and the tonal balance of instruments is improved. " 

At any rate, as I said, I've heard the active and passive versions of the same KEF, and it's night and day.  And generally, I think the amp-load matching opportunities in active designs eliminate/optimize much of what people hear as differences in expensive amplifiers, right down to the driver level. I remember that Julian Hirsch's infamous blind A/B/X amplifier listening test involved a mediating gain/impedance-matching step that probably fouled the experiment, but I could be wrong. (ducking away from object thrown by amplifier mavens).  I also run balanced, and like the idea of going balanced to the speakers.

For your Thiels I would look for a local tech to look at them, really no reason to send them half way across the country for another tech. If you are just trying to repair them any competent tech can change a failed part. I'd imagine there are quite a few competent techs in NY. Ask your local audio dealer for a recommendation on a local Tech.  
Ahofer, in the case of the Kef LS 50 active vs passive no question the actives are better. 

In the case of a more expensive speakers there are more issues at stake.

You have to like the sound of the amplfication built into the speaker or in cases of actives with dacs then you have to like the sound of that part of the chain as well.

In our shop we never sold that many of the active Kefs because if you went with the passive R5  at $2,800.00 plus a Nuprimce IDA 8 a 100 watt integrated dac the sound of the better passive speakers was far superior and the money was more but not that bad compare active plus stands $2,200 + stands $400 = $2,600

Kef R 5 floorstanders $2,800 plus amp $1,000.00 no stands $3,800.00 factor in speaker cable and you are a bit further but the difference in the size of the image, bass response and overall clarity still points to the better speakers with the external amplifier. 

So you have to factor in will the active 40 do it for you with the very clean sound of the built in ATC amplifiers or would you prefer the passives which you can flavor with a dac/preamp/streamer/amp of your choice such as the Naim Uniti Nova or the new Krell K300i integrated the actives will sound cleaner the passives may be flavored more to your tastes it will come down to a demo to see which way would be best for you.

Dave and Troy
Audio Doctor NJ
Regarding ATC and phase response, I looked into this a little bit a few months ago and came away with the impression that they probably had perfect phase alignment between the drivers at the crossover point but that they probably weren’t in phase over the entire frequency range to the degree that Thiel and Vandersteen are. I’m not sure, though. I don’t understand the technical side that well and what I found on the ATC site wasn’t that clear. If anyone understands and can explain this it’d be great.
Jim Thiel and Richard Vandersteen more than understand time and phase, i would say they pioneered it, certainly stuck with it as an ordinal design principle over the years, including very precise crossover matching to drivers in the anechoeic chamber. You can run your balanced lines to small monoblocks right behind the speakers. But yes the ATC actives are very good as is the power amp they use to get there...many studios run them in racks.
i would say GO LISTEN !!!
It's almost as if the Wilsons push the image towards you, whereas my Thiels tended to create a solid image at speaker position and behind - more of an audience position.
I hear ya.  I'm in the same boat sonic wise.  Have you heard the Vandys yet?  If not I highly recommend Audio Connection out in Verona NJ.  They also happen to carry ProAc, which are also awesome and very worth a listen.  I'd also HIGHLY encourage you to find a Joseph Audio dealer and listen to the Profiles, Pulsars, and Perspectives.  I don't believe they're technically time or phase coherent, but they have a unique crossover design that produces magical 3D imaging and an incredible disappearing act.  They're made out on Long Island so they gotta have a dealer somewhere near NYC.  As a dark horse, I'd also go hear Boenicke speakers.  Look them up -- they sound very intriguing if imaging and soundstaging are high on your list of priorities.  And I believe they have a dealer in Manhattan.

Just some other options if you dare.  Anyway, hope this helps and have fun exploring!
I’ve only heard them at audio shows. No local dealers. Always sound pretty distinctive. Have not had enough exposure to form a lasting opinion.   Still interested.   No doubt the build quality is quite good and the company has a great reputation for that.
I'm in touch with a NYC shop called anologique that seems to have been around for a while.  A few nightmare reviews on Yelp, but some good ones too.  Open to suggestions.  I'm getting an estimate to move my speakers down there next week #NYCapartmentliving.

 
http://www.analogique.com/

Get the pro models.  All the great Audio Engineers listen at home on the Pro Models.   Check out Vintage King.
"In order to discover for myself the sonic distinctions between active and passive, ATC, through its U.S. distributor Lone Mountain Audio, dispatched to me a “conversion kit,” so I could swap out the amp pack/electronic crossover for the standard SCM50 passive crossover"
http://www.theabsolutesound.com/articles/atc-scm50-aslt-loudspeaker/
I like that.
That was something special we did for Absolute Sound so they could compare active & passive approaches in one loudspeaker.  It required a fair amount of labor during the review to make the switch!  It's a pretty amazing thing to hear a high resolution wide band loudspeaker with flat phase and amplitude response.   You hear so many details you otherwise miss.

Brad
LoneMountain
Apples and salmon IF you can’t design a first Order filter / driver system

ATC active speakers are hard to beat. Be sure your preamp impedance is low, as the ATC actives have a 10k-ohm input. 
Lots of good discussion.  You might read the great responses recently regarding my recent purchase and experience with the ATC SCM 40 active floor standers.  I believe it covers the subject matter well.

https://forum.audiogon.com/discussions/review-atc-scm-40-a-floorstanders-finally?highlight=atc%2Bscm...
ahofer
I’m on the same track as you. My 3.6s are also 20+ years old and I think the xovers need work. I spoke to Rob at CSS and he was very willing to help get my 3.6s back up to par - but yes I’d have to do the work myself and I’m not confident I’d be able to do crossover work so would have to find a good tech, etc.  I’ve listened to the ATC scm19 passives briefly at Audio Doctor in Jersey City and thought they sounded really good but wasn’t able to find any availability for the scm40s (active or passive) which was the model I wanted to hear. My problem is I find myself comparing all the newer speakers to my 3.6s and I still think the Thiels sound better than all but a handful of those. I really loved the Vandersteens (I spent a good part of a day with John R. at Audio Connection in NJ and enjoyed my time there tremendously) but I’m not sure if the Vandy’s need for external filter would mesh with my Naim Electronics. I think that for me, the best option is getting my 3.6s repaired. They really are terrific speakers. 
ahofer
I’m on the same track as you. My 3.6s are also 20+ years old and I think the xovers need work. I spoke to Rob at CSS and he was very willing to help get my 3.6s back up to par - but yes I’d have to do the work myself and I’m not confident I’d be able to do crossover work so would have to find a good tech, etc.  I’ve listened to the ATC scm19 passives briefly at Audio Doctor in Jersey City and thought they sounded really good but wasn’t able to find any availability for the scm40s (active or passive) which was the model I wanted to hear. My problem is I find myself comparing all the newer speakers to my 3.6s and I still think the Thiels sound better than all but a handful of those. I really loved the Vandersteens (I spent a good part of a day with John R. at Audio Connection in NJ and enjoyed my time there tremendously) but I’m not sure if the Vandy’s need for external filter would mesh with my Naim Electronics. I think that for me, the best option is getting my 3.6s repaired. They really are terrific speakers. 
 @rosami what NAIM gear are you running ? You might be very pleasantly suprised. I am running a NAIM streamer / amp w TREO CT, great sound. 
I listened to the Wilson Sabrinas this weekend with the higher end Naim Uniti integrated (courtesy of Innovative Audio in NYC).  This time I spent a very happy and involved hour going through my demo tracks and then a bunch of stuff on Tidal. It was much easier to imagine having them at home.

Still haven't tried the Vandersteens.

I really don't know what to do with the Thiels. Presumably the parts have value.
Andrew, sorry for the inability to have you over to the shop the other day at short notice, we are primed and ready for demos this week.

If you liked the Sabrinas, the Legacy Signature sounds very similar at less then half the price, both speakers are very smooth, both speakers throw a huge soundstage, the Legacy's sound bigger with far deeper bass response, although they are physically bigger. 

For the same money as the Sabrinas with the Naim Uniti Nova you could get the much better sounding Naim Nac 272 preamp dac, and the NAP 250 Dr power amp with the Legacys signatures and we would think you would prefer this setup and it would acutally cost less.

Another speaker line that is very smooth and musical  is the Dali loudspeakers from Denmark. We have those on display as well.

Dave and Troy
Audio Doctor NJ


tomic601
Since the TREO CTs don't require a high-pass filter, there isn't the need to mess with the Naim's output, as there would be with the Quatro Wood CTs (that I think sound great).
I have an NAP300 partnered with an NAC252/Supercap. Since the Naim uses "non-standard" interconnects and different signal handling than other brands, Naim strongly suggests keeping the Naim hierarchy intact -- so no filters/adapters between the amp and preamp, etc. Since I don't want to change my electronics and given the price of the Quatro CTs, I think my best bet is to get my 3.6s repaired. IMO I can get comparable performance to the much more expensive Quatros by keeping my 20+ year old 3.6s. I've been dragging my feet in taking the next step because it means lots of effort taking out my drivers, having them rebuilt, and working on the crossovers, but after enjoying the Thiels for so long, I guess I owe it to them to do the repairs !

Hmm, if you are now looking at Sabrinas, you’d rather compare to the SCM100As!
 @rosami Certainly a path to get your Thiel fixed and they are wonderful! I am sure your naim gear provide that jump factor
you have already violated the naim game keep it all in the family philosophy with heresy Thiel ....the filters for the Vandersteen are not going to get in the way IMO
have fun enjoy the music !!!
jim


@ahofer. There is quite an active group of Thiel followers/owners here - yes your speakers have value certainly- you owe it to yourself to listen to the Vandersteen also IMO
have fun listening, enjoy the music, grace and peace on ya
jim
  (I posted this same comment in an older, Paradigm-related thread)

I want to thank Dave from Audio Doctor ("Audiotroy") for letting me listen to KEFs (3R) and Paradigms (Persona 3f) last night, mostly with the Naim Uniti Nova DAC/amp. There aren't many places where you can try a lot of great brands (including schlepping heavy speakers around) in a relaxed environment, and he offers that. If I buy something he carries, I'll try to route the order through him. I think we have to support places that let you listen.

I found the resolution and soundstage of the Paradigms to be extraordinary. You can hear the wood of the solo viola, and the movement of cymbals when struck, the voices and locations of individual string instruments (even low strings) in ensemble, clear as a bell. I don't think it's a speaker for big bass, but that's not a huge priority for me. I like the impression of the ensemble or orchestra laid out in front of me, life-size as possible.

My only reservations were a) I don't find them terribly attractive visually, and more importantly, b)possible longer-term listening fatigue. The Paradigms came off as a little hot in the treble, to me. Dave disagrees, in person and in this thread above.
Doubting my aging ears, I looked up test bench measurements last night. Multiple measured (on-axis) frequency responses of both the 3F (and 5F) are certainly consistent with what I heard, showing a substantial bump from 5-12khz:

https://www.soundandvision.com/content/paradigm-persona-3f-speaker-system-review-test-bench

They were toed in a bit, and if you look around you'll read a bunch of reviewers/users are setting them up facing straight ahead to avoid an overly bright presentation.   I'd like to listen to them against the KEF Ref 1 (and maybe 3), and try the off-axis set-up this time. Apart from the brightness, I think the Paradigms are *very* stiff competition for the much more expensive Wilson Sabrina.

The KEF 3Rs are a really nice speaker. Not quite up to the resolution and soundstage size of the Paradigms, but a great value for much less, and great looking (in Walnut particularly). I think you could spend a lot of happy listening hours with them, and I suspect it would be hard to do better at that price point, at least from my limited experience.

I still wouldn't mind listening to PSB T3, Monitor Audio, Vandersteen. The latter is a longer drive, and the former two would seem to require mail order trial, which is a schlep with such heavy units.
One possible wild card:

I have a pair of JBL L830s in my country place. My son bought them for me after blowing out their predecessors (Mirage). I am often very pleasantly surprised with these little $400 speakers. There is no good listening position in this (angular,open-plan, 1968, architect-designed) house, but the horn covers a huge part of the frequency range smoothly and sweetly (never really been a horn guy before), they throw a decent image from a variety of listening spots, and they have surprising bass response (I ended up getting rid of the subwoofer). It makes me wonder what the $10k S3900s can do with a similar design. JBL is pretty mass market now, but I have some fond youth memories of them....