milton

£1000 challenge,

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Hi all, first post but been reading forum for a while trying to create a shortlist of potentail components 'to listen'. As in title I have £1000 for speakers, amp and dac; I was thinking to keep my laptop for streaming ( I'm using Audirvana for my own collection as well as Tidal integrated. Not sure if I'll keep Tidal. Audirvana came with 3 months Tidal Hi - Fi trial and now I'm using another promo 3 months Tidal). I've had some B&W, Kef, Dali, ATC, Sony, Yamaha standmounts. None of them satisfied me 100%. ATC are very picky to recorded material, some music is not very listenable anymore. Amps ( mostly entry level): Exposure, Marantz, Rotel, Behringer. I listen jazz, electronic, alternative, indie, neo soul, no classical, country or rap in a about 21sqm family room. Speakers are now placed well away from side walls and about 30cm from back wall. 

Edit: I need something good at low volumes but not boomy when louder and don't mind second hand. 

Edited by milton
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You could buy my complete Rega system - Brio-R, Dac-R and RS3 speakers. I'll throw in a Teufel streamer (very underrated, does Spotify, Tidal etc). Works well. PM me if you want details...

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Even at this price point - especially if you are considering second hand as well - the combinations are almost infinite. I think you need to try and give us a little more to go on. 

It’s good that you have tried a number of different options already. Which speakers were closest to giving you the most satisfaction and what was it about them that most appealed? With the other speakers, what did you feel they were missing?

i am going to build a system for a friend soon for a similar budget, albeit with a vinyl front end. I have saved my old Living Voice speakers which I will probably pair with a Marantz PM4 amp. I know that it is a combination that works extremely well with great texture and ‘soul’ but it is far from having no flaws. Nevertheless, my friend has heard it and it really appeals to him.

I guess the point is that there is no right answer, it is down to personal taste. If you can give us more detail on what has most closely met your taste from the kit you have tried previously then we can suggest other options that build around that.

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As others suggest, there are endless potential combinations.  Though if I were in your position I’d save £100 of the budget for room measurement and correction kit - as this would transform any speaker/amp/dac combo well beyond its price point.

I’d get a miniDSP Umik room measurement mic and download REW and a pro audio Audio Units eq plugin such as DDMF IIEQ Pro for Audirvana, then use these to correct any room issues.  

Speaker-wise have you looked at Proac or Neat?  Both should work well with your music and need for low level listening, and will be more fun and more forgiving than ATC.

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Thank you all :)

Of all the speakers I've tried the Kef q300 got the best midrange, I would take vocals  and stereo image with me and inject it in another pair. Dali Zensor 3 - boxy sounding? not sure how to describe it but it was like I would move one eq slider up too far in the upper bass region. Old 600 series B&W were probably the worst of all with poor mids and wooly bass while Yamaha's good for movies and dance music with strong bass. My current ATC 11s are unforgiving, poor at low volumes, dry sounding but the good thing is they never cross the 'boom line', no matter what bassy track I've put on them the bass is always well defined. 

I don't mind actives or passives. I have a feeling that smaller ( 5 or 6 inch drivers) wont gives me good dynamics and decent sound at lower volumes?

Yeah, the Audirvana can accomodate plugins so that's an option too. 

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Good call, I like Marantz. I always thought they offer ballanced sound and reliability plus they never get rid of useful tone controls. What Dynaudios do you have in mind? Emit EM20 or something older second hand? I have never heard Dynaudios but from what I have read these shoud offer 'safe sound', good for most music? If that's true I'm perfectly ok with that. 

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Super Wammer

Might also be worth auditioning some Q acoustics, 3xxx or Concept ranges. 

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Bluesound powernode2i gives you a decent amp a good DAC & streamer in one box with one of the best control apps going.

Add speakers of your choice. 

As others have said, there are so many options for a £1k system new or 2nd hand, you have to start somewhere to begin to narrow down options.

One way to approach this is to find an amp that ticks your boxes & then use only that amp to find which speakers work best for you. 

The danger is that there are so many options, you’ll Just get confused with all the permutations.

Edited by manicatel

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4 hours ago, jas0_0 said:

As others suggest, there are endless potential combinations.  Though if I were in your position I’d save £100 of the budget for room measurement and correction kit - as this would transform any speaker/amp/dac combo well beyond its price point.

I’d get a miniDSP Umik room measurement mic and download REW and a pro audio Audio Units eq plugin such as DDMF IIEQ Pro for Audirvana, then use these to correct any room issues.  

Speaker-wise have you looked at Proac or Neat?  Both should work well with your music and need for low level listening, and will be more fun and more forgiving than ATC.

I on the other hand wouldn't.  Get the system you like the sound of best and then when installed at a later date (having done all the trial positions for speakers and where you sit) see if there are any annoyances and then consider room treatment when you have saved a few more pennies.  

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Bugger!  Read this too fast, and immediately thought we were talking about Randi 1 million usd speaker cable challenge.  So, cable experts, why not have a go if you think you’re hard enough.  Blatantly off topic, likely to be removed?

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Super Wammer

Don't know your Pre but do know the Behringer power amp, an amp that to me produces a sound akin to a flock of demented chickens in its brashness, lacking any focus, bass weight or delicacy. :sofa: 

Once that is substituted, even for something as humble/cheap (£120 - £180) as a used Rotel RB8xx/9xx series power amp then things should start to improve. 

I currently use a Rotel RB870 in my main rig when I want to avoid the central heating effects of my 845 valve monos during hot weather, and it is surprisingly good. 

Other power amps in the <£250 range include Cambridge P500, Arcam Alpha 7/8/9 and Audiolab 8000p. 

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