What size room will you be putting the speakers in, what do you like to listen to, there are more questions than answers now?
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I have often thought about what I would buy if money was not a concern. With 30K the speakers I would have at the top of my list to audition would be planers and ESLs. Not that I am the best person to give you advice, my system is only worth about a humble 5K.
But ones I would look at would be:
-Magnepan 20.1's with Mye stands - Under 10k new
-Martin Logan Summit (under 10k new) or used Statement E2 (used about 30k used)
-Sound Lab - as much as you want to spend depending on the model
What type of music do you like? Do you want a speaker to do 90% percent of things at 100% standard, or a speaker that will do 100% of things to a 90 % standard.
If you are looking for $30K speakers and you are asking advice here, you have problems far beyond what brand of speaker you should buy. At that price point if you don't go out and listen for yourself, you deserve whatever sorry assed mistakes you make by listening to other's advice.
A little dose of reality for you....
the utopias would be a logical step. much better than the mezzo. i went from utopias to novas, to martin logan ascents, odysseys, and now prodigys. i have owned the sound lab u1s a3s etc. i can tell you for around 6 to 7k used the prodigys set up properly, will compete with any speaker regaurdless of cost. i would in that size room go for the statememt e2s . they are as the other person mentioned around 30k. good luck. what kind of amps are you useing? at that kind of money you have no limits to what kind of great sound you will have.
The reason I asked about room size is because it can be a determining factor in what to buy. You really don't have any reason to buy something small regardless of the price. Your room is capable of employing all but the biggest speaker systems.
Comments have been made about asking for advice in the price range you seem to be looking. If you are just trying to get a starting point, that's fine, but don't put too much stock in the opinions that appear here.
If it were me, I would look seriously at the several speakers including, in no particular order:
Pass Labs Rushmore, this is an active speaker so your amps would be redundant.
Dali Euphonia, a remarkable product
Kharma, I forget the model, but they're darn good
Wilson Watt/Puppies 7, they have lots of detractors, but they are the best selling speaker over $10,000. I wonder if there's a reason
Just a few suggestions, there are lots of others. You have your work cut out for you, if you are indeed serious.
I gotta agree with ozzy on this one. You really should be out auditioning speakers and trying to find some that sound good to you.
To some people on the gon 30k isnt that big of a deal, but to a lot of us 30k is a small fortune.
If i had 30k to spend on speakers, i would tell everyone to go to hell and would be hitting every hi-fi dealer in the state.
Im sure you already have some speakers in mind? You should try to get peoples impressions of what you might currently be thinking of getting.
If at this point you dont have any idea of what speaker you would buy, then take that 30k and get something else. There definatly is nothing wrong with those JM Lab's you have
So i hope if you plan to drop $30,000.00(which is more than most of our overseas troops in Iraq make in a year), you better have a basic idea of what yer looking for or yer wasting yer time.
So whatcha got? whatcha looking for? what about your Jm Lab's do you not like? What are you trying to achieve?
If it is just "i have an extra 30k and figured i would blow it on speakers even though im perfectly happy with the ones i have and have no idea of what to do with 30 freakin thousand dollars" then my suggestion is donate some of it to the Tsunami relieve fund, put some kid through college who cannot afford it, or something else worthwhile.
If there is something specific your speakers dont do for you and you are looking for some that will fill that missing performance, then let us know what is missing and somone here will be able to point you in a good direction. Im not saying it is irresponsible to spend 30k on speakers, however, if yer spending 30k on anything you should really have a damn good idea of what you want and why what you have is not working for you.
hope that diddnt come across as harsh, i certainly dont mean to be, but putting up a 30k budget asking what you should do with it, you will get some interesting responces.
Normally when i see a thread called "Which speaker should i buy? Please help" there is a budget of 1,500 or so and they are just starting into this hobby, not looking to drop a dollar amount that equates to a higher price of half the systems in the "Virtual systems" section.
Happy listening buddy! :)
If you listen mostly to classical and vocal. there is no speaker I've been more impressed with that does these area's better than the Magnepan 20.1 Forget distortion pushing cone type speaker's, unless you want to compare them against the 20.1's which will then allow you to hear a speaker that does voice and music like no other. Seek out a dealer and give them a audition and I'm sure you will like how they sound with classical music as well as voice. I own the 3.6R's and wished I bought the 20.1's, but for now I'm very happy with what I have.
I would certainly consider the Von Schweikert VR7se's. They are amazing and do absolutely everything well. The clarity is remarkable with incredible bandwidth (15Hz flat to over 60KHz), huge soundstage and tremendous cohesion between drivers. They are very live sounding.
I am a dealer for VSA and certainly recommend you listen to as many speakers as you can before making a decision.
I haven't heard them myself, but if you care about how the speakers look, you'll go ga-ga over the Sonus Faber Stradivaris.
They are by far the most gorgeous looking speakers I've seen. Oh, and I hear they sound pretty good too :) Many consider them the ultimate speakers for string instruments and vocals.
They're a little over your budget, but I figured another 10k isn't going to break your bank. If that 30k is really the ceiling, their other homage speakers, Amati, are fantastic too at half the cost.