Roadster25

Cheap and cheerful speakers

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Gentlemen,

What are your choices for current(ish) cheap speakers at the moment?  I’m thinking of a change in my second system, replacing a pair of Minstrels.  Must be good in a small room, near a wall, bouncy wooden floor.  To be driven by a Rotel integrated.

My default thinking is the latest Dali offering, having rather enjoyed a pair of Zensor 1s in the past.  What else is there that sounds decent for little outlay?

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Super Wammer

Q Acoustic 3020, are disgustingly good. I have a pair being fed by my 31yr old Stan Curt era Cambridge C50/A50 combo (fed via coax across from my Node2 {in the main rig} to a Pro-Ject DAC Box S) and I've never heard my amps sound so good. This 2nd system (in the same rack as main rig) only really loses out by way of bass extension and the extra detail/nuance that a  £35k+ system provides. The 3020s provide me with 85% of my main rig they're that good. 

Sub £80 used, circa £109 new. 

Edited by Lurch
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The system is in my living room which is about 10’ x 11’, minus fireplace and plus bay window.  Ideally the front baffles would be no more than 13” or 14” from the wall, as the Minstrels are now. 
 

I don’t want to spend over £200, new or newish.  £150 would be even better!  I already have some decent stands spare.

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47 minutes ago, Roadster25 said:

Gentlemen,

What are your choices for current(ish) cheap speakers at the moment?  I’m thinking of a change in my second system, replacing a pair of Minstrels.  Must be good in a small room, near a wall, bouncy wooden floor.  To be driven by a Rotel integrated.

My default thinking is the latest Dali offering, having rather enjoyed a pair of Zensor 1s in the past.  What else is there that sounds decent for little outlay?

Hi James,

I'm using Wharfedale Diamond 10.3, in my living room No. 2 system. They,re small, floor standing speakers, not current bu there's the 11.0 series,and further models, second hand, still cheap. . Bass is good for the size. If you can get a copy of "Graceland" by Paul Simon, it really makes them sing. Bought them 3 /4 years ago, second hand, £100. I use a Rotel RC 1850 (pre-amp) and a pair of Rotel RB960bx power amps, in bridged mode - really drives the speakers.They can be bi-wired, I tried it and noticed no difference - just vendors trying to make customers buy more cable (imo). I run a CD player, tuner and cassette player and they all produce excellent sounds through these speakers.

Cheers, Smithy.

PS I have Wharfedale 9.0 bookshelves in my kitchen. Very small bookshelvers, perfect for a kitchen. Really like the Diamond sound. They both won a number of awards, in their time. :)

Edited by locheeboy
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See if you can get your hands on the Sony SS CS5, it’s cheap and sounds good.

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Super Wammer

Tannoy Mercury M2.. £75-£120 for a mint boxed pair

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I can't think of anything else to match the 3020i at their price mark, for build quality and performance. Peter Tyson have a refurbished pair on ebay right now.

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Manufacturer-Refurbished-Q-Acoustics-3020i-Bookshelf-Speakers-English-Walnut/233438149599?hash=item3659ff7bdf:g:BZ4AAOSwWNZd-mD8

Edited by TIU

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Super Wammer

Oh my god the list is pretty endless - depending on what is on ebay at the mo.  The following list is .. at the top £150 down to £100 and then from £1 to £50 .. I have just picked out speakers I know to give reasonable performance and even more but the idea is not to choose for you but to open your eyes to look yourself and see what you fancy then ask us what we think.    I should add I got bored and there are pages of speakers between £50 and £100 

Of the list below  the top one in the list I used to sell in the 70s, a neat bookshelf with  KEF drivers and may be just the ticket = or not lol

have a butchers and see if any take your fancy - then check out yourself the ones between £50 and £100 and when you have a handful that appeal to you then come and ask us what we think (also check out google reviews).  I should add the older Castle loudspeakers can represent hellish value for money 

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Tangent-RS-2-Bookshelf-monitor-speakers-KEF-T27-Audax-International-delivery/293421168390?hash=item445143b706:g:wuoAAOSwM4heEiKp (you could recoup your money just selling the drive units

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Klipsch-Synergy-B2-compact-bookshelf-audiophile-reference-standard-hi-fi-speaker/254473831373?hash=item3b3fd283cd:g:B~AAAOSwXk1eE3y5

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Castle-Acoustic-York-Speakers-Oak-Veneer-DNM-Reson-Bi-Wire-Links/283748408970?hash=item4210b91e8a:g:gyAAAOSwPa9d44ys

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Leak-2030-speakers-vintage-1970s-excellent-sound-condition-all-original/323999736533?hash=item4b6fe3a2d5:g:LAwAAOSwteRd0W4T

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Wharfedale-Linton-3XP-HiFi-Stereo-Speakers-Superb-Example-Classic-British-Audio/352883099307?hash=item522978c6ab:g:wCkAAOSwffRd7Nmg

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/B-W-DM-302-Bookshelf-Speakers-Classic/193298561854?hash=item2d017dfb3e:g:us0AAOSwpJReHI~l

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/OLi-POWA-5-Mk-II-Pair-of-Active-speakers-Red-Bluetooth-AptX-Remote-Control-2-Way/202860723626?hash=item2f3b70fdaa:g:r64AAOSwKS9d~82Z  don't know what they sound like but they are active and look cool lol

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/EPOS-M12i-stand-mount-bookshelf-speakers-in-cherry-upgraded-crossovers/303446326991?hash=item46a6cf7ecf:g:q50AAOSwBm9eHtmx

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Dali-Spektor-1-Bookshelf-Speaker-Walnut/233364483662?hash=item36559b6e4e:g:KDoAAOSwjThdndUm

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Wharfedale-Diamond-11-1-Speakers-Black-Reduced-to-Clear/233468089304?epid=8010229630&hash=item365bc853d8:g:3sIAAOSwHX5eIhOA

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Monitor-audio-Bronze-MR2-Bookshelf-speakers-black/392622355986?hash=item5b6a1db612:g:0psAAOSwndFeD7F-

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Pair-of-Rare-Vintage-Limited-Edition-Castle-Lincoln-70W-Hifi-Stereo-Speakers-VGC/202764996370?hash=item2f35bc4f12:g:YqEAAOSwLo9dZBVp

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Keesonic-Kub-Classic-Vintage-Speakers-LS3-5A-KAN/163802109586?hash=item26235dd692:g:T9UAAOSwmgVdREIu  more Videotone Minimax than LS35A well rated in their day

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/NAD-801MM-SPEAKERS/362884986660?hash=item547da17724:g:WTUAAOSwXBdeIbP~

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Castle-Kendal-Speakers/283738943903?hash=item421028b19f:g:cogAAOSwMDpeGLxQ

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/KHL-PRO31-PAIR-of-SPEAKERS-USED-IN-GOOD-CONDITION-APART-FROM-A-SMALL-SCUFF-IN-P/274207433337?hash=item3fd8096279:g:mAQAAOSw~8ld1ouu

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Castle-Richmond-II-Castle-Acoustics-Richmond-II-Standmount-Speakers-Matched-pair/372885509858?hash=item56d1b556e2:g:Ni8AAOSwRy5eB25t

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/AVI-Nu-Neutron-Monitor-Hi-Fi-loudspeakers-Made-in-the-UK-Superb-sound-99p-NR/114072944798?hash=item1a8f47009e:g:-ocAAOSw1T1eIymE

How about some floor standers?  https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Focal-jm-lab-Chorus-715/264595682597?hash=item3d9b21b525:g:hXgAAOSwaCteGfmQ

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Wharfedale-Diamond-Bookshelf-Speakers/233465975102?hash=item365ba8113e:g:g1kAAOSwc2ZeHu92

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Acoustic-Energy-AE-100-Speakers-mahogany-finish/264602924317?epid=85170319&hash=item3d9b90351d:g:0AYAAOSw55peIvdc

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/2x-Heybrook-HB-150-Loudspeakers/324042249625?hash=item4b726c5599:g:XgoAAOSwgOdeHbv-

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Monitor-Audio-REF-700-PMC-Hifi-Speakers/143499602693?hash=item21693e2b05:g:PBsAAOSwhBFeIKCX may be possible to pull the domes back out but still working

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Q-Acoustics-2010i-Walnut-Bookshelf-Speakers-Pair/124050707534?epid=87536481&hash=item1ce1ff944e:g:Q8MAAOSwvxBeF6kd

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Pair-Of-JMLAB-Chorus-707-100W-8-Ohm-Stand-Mounted-Bookshelf-Speakers-CS-C42/392636972571?hash=item5b6afcbe1b:g:YZUAAOSwf9td-Nm3

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Vintage-Goodmans-Minister-High-Fidelity-4-8ohms-20-Watts-Speakers-Made-in-UK/153793591631?hash=item23cecff94f:g:mQwAAOSwGnpd7Qcm

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Kef-Reference-Series-speakers-Model-104ab-teak-finish-Excellent-sound/383370613979?hash=item5942ab54db:g:VAUAAOSwTYZeHdid

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Vintage-Griffin-Omega-2-HiFi-speakers-in-Excellent-Fully-Working-condition/293407793580?hash=item445077a1ac:g:hI0AAOSw1BxeEI23

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Pair-Of-BOWERS-AND-WILKINS-B-W-DM2-Hi-Fi-Speakers-CS-BB2/383364240190?hash=item59424a133e:g:YlgAAOSwXq5eGFJ9

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 Thanks for the suggestions.

I have flirted with Q Acoustics speakers in the past, but we didn’t really get on.  That said, the amp at the time was a Brio, rather different to the RA-01 I now have. At the price they are hard to ignore.

M2s are a good shout - I used to have a pair, and liked them very much.  Sadly I lost custody a few years ago.  Will see what’s about.

I hadn’t thought about the Sony or Wharfedale options at all, so will do some looking up.  Smithy, what is it you like so much about them?

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Super Wammer

The Diamond 9.1 are definitely worth a go, we'll built, look good and sound great + front ported if I remember correctly, and can be had for <£100.

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22 minutes ago, uzzy said:

Oh my god the list is pretty endless - depending on what is on ebay at the mo.  The following list is .. at the top £150 down to £100 and then from £1 to £50 .. I have just picked out speakers I know to give reasonable performance and even more but the idea is not to choose for you but to open your eyes to look yourself and see what you fancy then ask us what we think.    I should add I got bored and there are pages of speakers between £50 and £100 

Of the list below  the top one in the list I used to sell in the 70s, a neat bookshelf with  KEF drivers and may be just the ticket = or not lol

have a butchers and see if any take your fancy - then check out yourself the ones between £50 and £100 and when you have a handful that appeal to you then come and ask us what we think (also check out google reviews).  I should add the older Castle loudspeakers can represent hellish value for money 

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Tangent-RS-2-Bookshelf-monitor-speakers-KEF-T27-Audax-International-delivery/293421168390?hash=item445143b706:g:wuoAAOSwM4heEiKp (you could recoup your money just selling the drive units

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Klipsch-Synergy-B2-compact-bookshelf-audiophile-reference-standard-hi-fi-speaker/254473831373?hash=item3b3fd283cd:g:B~AAAOSwXk1eE3y5

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Castle-Acoustic-York-Speakers-Oak-Veneer-DNM-Reson-Bi-Wire-Links/283748408970?hash=item4210b91e8a:g:gyAAAOSwPa9d44ys

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Leak-2030-speakers-vintage-1970s-excellent-sound-condition-all-original/323999736533?hash=item4b6fe3a2d5:g:LAwAAOSwteRd0W4T

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Wharfedale-Linton-3XP-HiFi-Stereo-Speakers-Superb-Example-Classic-British-Audio/352883099307?hash=item522978c6ab:g:wCkAAOSwffRd7Nmg

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/B-W-DM-302-Bookshelf-Speakers-Classic/193298561854?hash=item2d017dfb3e:g:us0AAOSwpJReHI~l

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/OLi-POWA-5-Mk-II-Pair-of-Active-speakers-Red-Bluetooth-AptX-Remote-Control-2-Way/202860723626?hash=item2f3b70fdaa:g:r64AAOSwKS9d~82Z  don't know what they sound like but they are active and look cool lol

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/EPOS-M12i-stand-mount-bookshelf-speakers-in-cherry-upgraded-crossovers/303446326991?hash=item46a6cf7ecf:g:q50AAOSwBm9eHtmx

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Dali-Spektor-1-Bookshelf-Speaker-Walnut/233364483662?hash=item36559b6e4e:g:KDoAAOSwjThdndUm

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Wharfedale-Diamond-11-1-Speakers-Black-Reduced-to-Clear/233468089304?epid=8010229630&hash=item365bc853d8:g:3sIAAOSwHX5eIhOA

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Monitor-audio-Bronze-MR2-Bookshelf-speakers-black/392622355986?hash=item5b6a1db612:g:0psAAOSwndFeD7F-

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Pair-of-Rare-Vintage-Limited-Edition-Castle-Lincoln-70W-Hifi-Stereo-Speakers-VGC/202764996370?hash=item2f35bc4f12:g:YqEAAOSwLo9dZBVp

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Keesonic-Kub-Classic-Vintage-Speakers-LS3-5A-KAN/163802109586?hash=item26235dd692:g:T9UAAOSwmgVdREIu  more Videotone Minimax than LS35A well rated in their day

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/NAD-801MM-SPEAKERS/362884986660?hash=item547da17724:g:WTUAAOSwXBdeIbP~

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Castle-Kendal-Speakers/283738943903?hash=item421028b19f:g:cogAAOSwMDpeGLxQ

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/KHL-PRO31-PAIR-of-SPEAKERS-USED-IN-GOOD-CONDITION-APART-FROM-A-SMALL-SCUFF-IN-P/274207433337?hash=item3fd8096279:g:mAQAAOSw~8ld1ouu

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Castle-Richmond-II-Castle-Acoustics-Richmond-II-Standmount-Speakers-Matched-pair/372885509858?hash=item56d1b556e2:g:Ni8AAOSwRy5eB25t

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/AVI-Nu-Neutron-Monitor-Hi-Fi-loudspeakers-Made-in-the-UK-Superb-sound-99p-NR/114072944798?hash=item1a8f47009e:g:-ocAAOSw1T1eIymE

How about some floor standers?  https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Focal-jm-lab-Chorus-715/264595682597?hash=item3d9b21b525:g:hXgAAOSwaCteGfmQ

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Wharfedale-Diamond-Bookshelf-Speakers/233465975102?hash=item365ba8113e:g:g1kAAOSwc2ZeHu92

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Acoustic-Energy-AE-100-Speakers-mahogany-finish/264602924317?epid=85170319&hash=item3d9b90351d:g:0AYAAOSw55peIvdc

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/2x-Heybrook-HB-150-Loudspeakers/324042249625?hash=item4b726c5599:g:XgoAAOSwgOdeHbv-

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Monitor-Audio-REF-700-PMC-Hifi-Speakers/143499602693?hash=item21693e2b05:g:PBsAAOSwhBFeIKCX may be possible to pull the domes back out but still working

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Q-Acoustics-2010i-Walnut-Bookshelf-Speakers-Pair/124050707534?epid=87536481&hash=item1ce1ff944e:g:Q8MAAOSwvxBeF6kd

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Pair-Of-JMLAB-Chorus-707-100W-8-Ohm-Stand-Mounted-Bookshelf-Speakers-CS-C42/392636972571?hash=item5b6afcbe1b:g:YZUAAOSwf9td-Nm3

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Vintage-Goodmans-Minister-High-Fidelity-4-8ohms-20-Watts-Speakers-Made-in-UK/153793591631?hash=item23cecff94f:g:mQwAAOSwGnpd7Qcm

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Kef-Reference-Series-speakers-Model-104ab-teak-finish-Excellent-sound/383370613979?hash=item5942ab54db:g:VAUAAOSwTYZeHdid

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Vintage-Griffin-Omega-2-HiFi-speakers-in-Excellent-Fully-Working-condition/293407793580?hash=item445077a1ac:g:hI0AAOSw1BxeEI23

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Pair-Of-BOWERS-AND-WILKINS-B-W-DM2-Hi-Fi-Speakers-CS-BB2/383364240190?hash=item59424a133e:g:YlgAAOSwXq5eGFJ9

You will never get that time back and neither will I for going through the list lol.

The Epos M12i is a good shout. Pretty even-handed, a good all-rounder.

Edited by TIU

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Super Wammer
Just now, TIU said:

ou will never get that time back and neither will I for going through the list lol.

I enjoyed looking to be honest (to begin with)  .. you never know what bargains you might find 

I would add I did put the list up for Roadster, who asked the question -  but I forgot that when we see a list of hifi items we just have to have a look .. 

Interestingly on Facebook Turntables group - a guy just posted his second system, which was a Dual or some cheap deck with a pair of these https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/OLi-POWA-5-Mk-II-Pair-of-Active-speakers-Red-Bluetooth-AptX-Remote-Control-2-Way/202860723626?hash=item2f3b70fdaa:g:r64AAOSwKS9d~82Z (do not look they are the orange active ones in the list above)  .. and that was nice and minimalist on one long shelf - 

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Wow, thanks to Uzzy for that. Certainly a huge amount to consider.

The Tangents certainly have my attention.  The NADs are interesting too, and very local to me.  I’ve even bought a few bits from the seller before.  Are they any good?

Always wanted to try a pair of Diamond 9.1s - they were the big thing when I first started getting into Hi-fi, but was up-sold to a pair of iQ5s.  Does anybody know how the 220s compare? Their downward port could work well in my room.

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Tannoy f1 custom..or wharfdale diamond 9.1

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