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  1. #1461
    Wammer It Cost How Much!?!'s Avatar
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    Really nice looking Penn Audio


  2. #1462
    Founding Wammer SSM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by droodzilla View Post
    Thanks for the kind, yet gently mocking words Solid. It looks like I've finally settled down with Harbeth, and that I will love my speakers even if they bloat to the proportions of the laughably named Compact C7s. I'm sure my head will be turned from time to time by the pert tweeter of the latest mini-monitor, but I intend to remain faithful to my Harbs now, til Death us do part. Sounds like you still have some wild oats to sow before you tie the knot, and I look forward to the vicarious thrills of watching your further exploits on this thread.

    Best Wishes
    Nigel

    P.S. The stands were included in the sale. Ironically, they're called "Something Solid" :-)
    Some Solid indeed! I've got sexier and more muscular legs than those toothpicks.
    Oh well, you will have something to remember me by when your final Harbeths slowly drag you down into the abyss of senility. Farewell!




    btw our SA1 friend Iggy at the other side has just taken up ADM9.1 ownership and is raving about their superb neutrality. That is spurring me to consider having the Neutron 5 as a summer fling. You had the 5, are they really as bass-light as your previous description said? Maybe they are just exhibiting ultra-tight control in the LF region. The Neutron IV I had was like that - no added bass bloom at all, yet I wouldn't call it lean.


    cheerSS
    Last edited by SSM; 18-01-2011 at 01:32 PM. Reason: Vanity;-)
    CONRAD-JOHNSON HD3 & ET3SE > SUN SV-2A3 L.E. 25th Anniv. SE Class A | NAIM DAC V1 > C-J CLASSIC 60SE PP
    PRIMARE DAC30 > AYRE K-5xeMP > 6V6GT SE Class A | audiolab M-DAC
    > ICON AUDIO LA4 MKIII > EL84 SE Class A
    MUSICAL FIDELITY X-T100
    (modded valve pre) > GENESIS Advanced Tech. M60 (& I60) PP | PRIMARE A34.2 Class D
    OMEGA SUPER ALNICO & 3i Monitors |
    PRECISION 6.2, ELAC BS244, ATC SCM11, S3/5R, Alnico, XERO, DM 2/6, Q 2020i
    SS relics: REGA ELICIT, ARCAM A38, Musical Fidelity X-A2, NAIM NAP 100, QUAD 909, SONY TA-F246E | MiniWatt N3

  3. #1463
    Wammer It Cost How Much!?!'s Avatar
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    Having just seen this rack on the Firestone site, I so want one to go with my Firestone USB DAC and power supply

    http://www.firestone-audio.com/


  4. #1464
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    Solid, take dowdy Uncle Droo's advice and settle down with a nice, homely speaker... before you fritter away any more of your life on this unending quest for increasingly hardcore small speaker action. But if you insist...

    I don't remember saying the Neutron Vs were bass-light. In fact I don't remember thinking they were bass-light either. It's a while ago, and auditory memory is notoriously unreliable, but I remember thinking the bass was rather good. Not earth-shaking, but more than adequate in my small listening room. Overall, the sound from these black beauties was very well balanced, and pleasing to my ears. They were *annoyingly* good, given their low price. In retrospect, I'm not sure why I kept the SCM7s instead of the Neutron Vs. The former are definitely more neutral than the latter - or more accurate - but I feel less purist about such matters nowadays, so that factor would weigh less heavily in the balance. They're excellent little speakers, and a bargain at the price. Does that help :-)

    That's an excellent thread Igglebert started on the WHF forum, but I have to ask: what possessed you to slum it and post a reply?!

    Cheers
    Nigel

  5. #1465
    Wammer
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    how about these SSM, cute enough?


  6. #1466
    Founding Wammer SSM's Avatar
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    Thanks Uncle Drood. So the Five is not bass-light then. Wonderful. Selling the Neutron IV was one of the biggest regrets of my audiolife and I can make amends by getting the Five.

    btw to my ears the AVI house-sound shares much with the Spendor's than it does with Harbeth's (I chose the Neutron IV over the S3e in 2006, but both shared similar traits). I could happily slum with the Five while bypassing the SA1 (Tipocan price has just rocketed to 1399) and searching higher up the rung for my next hardcore tiny speaker fun.

    If you or anyone else know of any 25cm high mini-monitor that makes a sound like B&W's CM9, please alert me!


    cheerSS


    ps: yeah, I surprised myself by posting on that site. That's the mag that gave Arcam's stunning A38 amp three stars while the screeching 8XPd got the full set.
    Last edited by SSM; 20-01-2011 at 01:25 PM.
    CONRAD-JOHNSON HD3 & ET3SE > SUN SV-2A3 L.E. 25th Anniv. SE Class A | NAIM DAC V1 > C-J CLASSIC 60SE PP
    PRIMARE DAC30 > AYRE K-5xeMP > 6V6GT SE Class A | audiolab M-DAC
    > ICON AUDIO LA4 MKIII > EL84 SE Class A
    MUSICAL FIDELITY X-T100
    (modded valve pre) > GENESIS Advanced Tech. M60 (& I60) PP | PRIMARE A34.2 Class D
    OMEGA SUPER ALNICO & 3i Monitors |
    PRECISION 6.2, ELAC BS244, ATC SCM11, S3/5R, Alnico, XERO, DM 2/6, Q 2020i
    SS relics: REGA ELICIT, ARCAM A38, Musical Fidelity X-A2, NAIM NAP 100, QUAD 909, SONY TA-F246E | MiniWatt N3

  7. #1467
    Founding Wammer SSM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikedefacto View Post
    how about these SSM, cute enough?

    The phase plug and side profile are delectable enough. But the front veneer - AACK! Is that the Sushi-Rice Mat Finish?


    SS
    Last edited by SSM; 20-01-2011 at 01:22 PM. Reason: Vanity;-)
    CONRAD-JOHNSON HD3 & ET3SE > SUN SV-2A3 L.E. 25th Anniv. SE Class A | NAIM DAC V1 > C-J CLASSIC 60SE PP
    PRIMARE DAC30 > AYRE K-5xeMP > 6V6GT SE Class A | audiolab M-DAC
    > ICON AUDIO LA4 MKIII > EL84 SE Class A
    MUSICAL FIDELITY X-T100
    (modded valve pre) > GENESIS Advanced Tech. M60 (& I60) PP | PRIMARE A34.2 Class D
    OMEGA SUPER ALNICO & 3i Monitors |
    PRECISION 6.2, ELAC BS244, ATC SCM11, S3/5R, Alnico, XERO, DM 2/6, Q 2020i
    SS relics: REGA ELICIT, ARCAM A38, Musical Fidelity X-A2, NAIM NAP 100, QUAD 909, SONY TA-F246E | MiniWatt N3

  8. #1468
    Wammer
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    SSM have you considered the Dali Mentor Menuet - only 25cm high

  9. #1469
    Founding Wammer SSM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by matt2007 View Post
    SSM have you considered the Dali Mentor Menuet - only 25cm high
    Have to pass on that one. The Tipocan rrp of 999 is quite a big ask for something so tiny.

    I have to say I am at a crossroads which may see the end of my mini-monitor fetish. The SA1 and P3ESR at 1300ish a piece do justify their worth, but I'm also quite aware of the multitude of fabulous multi-driver floorstanders available for the same price. PMC GB1i, KEF XQ700, Dali Ikon mkII 5 or 6, and the upcoming B&W CM8. All of which can create vast scale whilst sacrificing just 3-5% of the SA1's and P3ESR's tonal purity. I had auditioned Arcam's A38 with the CM9 and was struck by the amazing synergy. The new IKON series is exerting a lot of attraction too as I had used the 5 and 6 mkI, and mkII promises improved integration of the hybrid tweeter with the rest of the frequency range. The IKON 5 mkII at 900 could be just perfect for me.



    ^ but it's the slimine CM8 at 1300ish I find most gorgeous. It is the entry point to B&W's FST Kevlar cone. I can really see myself celebrating Xmas 2011 with it tethered to Arcam's A38/P38 bisexual, errr, biamp combo.

    It's a good thing the tennis season has started. I'll be at home this weekend watching the telly rather than traipse around the audio shops looking for excuses to squander my preciouss 3000 snowball.


    SS
    Last edited by SSM; 21-01-2011 at 10:37 AM. Reason: Vanity;-)
    CONRAD-JOHNSON HD3 & ET3SE > SUN SV-2A3 L.E. 25th Anniv. SE Class A | NAIM DAC V1 > C-J CLASSIC 60SE PP
    PRIMARE DAC30 > AYRE K-5xeMP > 6V6GT SE Class A | audiolab M-DAC
    > ICON AUDIO LA4 MKIII > EL84 SE Class A
    MUSICAL FIDELITY X-T100
    (modded valve pre) > GENESIS Advanced Tech. M60 (& I60) PP | PRIMARE A34.2 Class D
    OMEGA SUPER ALNICO & 3i Monitors |
    PRECISION 6.2, ELAC BS244, ATC SCM11, S3/5R, Alnico, XERO, DM 2/6, Q 2020i
    SS relics: REGA ELICIT, ARCAM A38, Musical Fidelity X-A2, NAIM NAP 100, QUAD 909, SONY TA-F246E | MiniWatt N3

  10. #1470
    Wammer
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  11. #1471
    Founding Wammer SSM's Avatar
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    Hah! That's Testure's Eskimo Pie.

    You can just give up trying to tempt me with those assorted pics. There is only one standmount occupying pole position at the back of solidshead. I had mentioned on the whf forum that I'm looking to Italy for both style and sound.




    ^ OPERA's Prima from the Linea Classica series!!! (Not to be confused with an earlier Prima model) The LC Prima has a tapered arse like Dynaudio's Focus series, and priced in the SA1/P3ESR bracket at 1300ish. All custom Scanspeak drivers.

    As a dedicated Italian opera-lover, it could be time for me own an Italian speaker tuned for such musical ambrosia.

    And so you have just had the 2011 preview for this journal. It's going to be a summer KO match between the Prima and CM8.


    cheerSS
    Last edited by SSM; 21-01-2011 at 11:07 AM. Reason: Vanity;-)
    CONRAD-JOHNSON HD3 & ET3SE > SUN SV-2A3 L.E. 25th Anniv. SE Class A | NAIM DAC V1 > C-J CLASSIC 60SE PP
    PRIMARE DAC30 > AYRE K-5xeMP > 6V6GT SE Class A | audiolab M-DAC
    > ICON AUDIO LA4 MKIII > EL84 SE Class A
    MUSICAL FIDELITY X-T100
    (modded valve pre) > GENESIS Advanced Tech. M60 (& I60) PP | PRIMARE A34.2 Class D
    OMEGA SUPER ALNICO & 3i Monitors |
    PRECISION 6.2, ELAC BS244, ATC SCM11, S3/5R, Alnico, XERO, DM 2/6, Q 2020i
    SS relics: REGA ELICIT, ARCAM A38, Musical Fidelity X-A2, NAIM NAP 100, QUAD 909, SONY TA-F246E | MiniWatt N3

  12. #1472
    Wammer
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    Yes the Prima is very lovely... we (ok, I) want very detailled reports immediately

  13. #1473
    Founding Wammer SSM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikedefacto View Post
    Yes the Prima is very lovely... we (ok, I) want very detailled reports immediately
    Well, you hold your breath for that until my birthday comes. I'm Gemini.


    SS
    CONRAD-JOHNSON HD3 & ET3SE > SUN SV-2A3 L.E. 25th Anniv. SE Class A | NAIM DAC V1 > C-J CLASSIC 60SE PP
    PRIMARE DAC30 > AYRE K-5xeMP > 6V6GT SE Class A | audiolab M-DAC
    > ICON AUDIO LA4 MKIII > EL84 SE Class A
    MUSICAL FIDELITY X-T100
    (modded valve pre) > GENESIS Advanced Tech. M60 (& I60) PP | PRIMARE A34.2 Class D
    OMEGA SUPER ALNICO & 3i Monitors |
    PRECISION 6.2, ELAC BS244, ATC SCM11, S3/5R, Alnico, XERO, DM 2/6, Q 2020i
    SS relics: REGA ELICIT, ARCAM A38, Musical Fidelity X-A2, NAIM NAP 100, QUAD 909, SONY TA-F246E | MiniWatt N3

  14. #1474
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    Lovely looking beasties Solid (the Operas, not the B&Ws - gold kevlar doesn't do it for me). Don't Sonus Faber offer anything suitably petite and stylish (and within budget)?

  15. #1475
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    Heard the Toy before I bought the S3/5R last year and the SF sound doesn't sit well with me. Hopefully the Operas will hit closer to home.

    That Kevlar's not gold but canary yellow. Geoff Capes would approve.


    SS
    CONRAD-JOHNSON HD3 & ET3SE > SUN SV-2A3 L.E. 25th Anniv. SE Class A | NAIM DAC V1 > C-J CLASSIC 60SE PP
    PRIMARE DAC30 > AYRE K-5xeMP > 6V6GT SE Class A | audiolab M-DAC
    > ICON AUDIO LA4 MKIII > EL84 SE Class A
    MUSICAL FIDELITY X-T100
    (modded valve pre) > GENESIS Advanced Tech. M60 (& I60) PP | PRIMARE A34.2 Class D
    OMEGA SUPER ALNICO & 3i Monitors |
    PRECISION 6.2, ELAC BS244, ATC SCM11, S3/5R, Alnico, XERO, DM 2/6, Q 2020i
    SS relics: REGA ELICIT, ARCAM A38, Musical Fidelity X-A2, NAIM NAP 100, QUAD 909, SONY TA-F246E | MiniWatt N3

  16. #1476
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    SPENDOR S3/5R - under sscrutiny
    (moving from solidsstudy to solidsoffice soon; to be replaced by another Spendor or an Opera)

    It was a happy day a year ago when I brought these little cuties home. I was looking for a musically enticing foil for the SCM11 in my main rig. Having been at solidschateau for over two years now, the ATC has proven to be a truly exceptional speaker with excellent dynamics, transparency and bass. It is the best all-round standmount I ever owned and is rather under-priced given its abilities IMO.

    The only caveat is its handling of classical vocal pieces where it sometimes makes the music brawnier than it ought to be. So it was an oppportune time for solidschateau to have its first-ever Spendor Beeb-box. A modern descendant of the hallowed LS3/5a would reproduce vocal music to near perfection, hopefully then...

    Spendor's S3/5R and SA1 both offered that kind of finesse within the same 305x165x190mm dimension. The SA1's timing had extra zip and its wide-surround tweeter design gave immense airiness to the treble. Otherwise the hallmark Spendor sound was shared by both. I decided to try the S3/5R first as its presentation was more 'classic' in the sense that it had the sonic poise and elegance I was familiar with from the older Spendor standmounts my local HMV store used. The SA1 was like a souped-up, modernist take on the LS3/5a.

    The S3/5R's build is decent enough but if I were to be frank this made-in-Britain box, like its compatriot the Leema Xero, suffers from minor lapses in production quality compared to the Dynaudio and DALI speakers I had. While the Danes were perfectly made in every aspect, the Xero has rattly screwcaps on its binding posts while the wood on its grille covers smelt musty. On the S3/5R's grilles, a couple of the plastic pegs were wobbly and its veneer's varnish is nowhere near as thick and shiny as a Dyn's. The binding posts at the rear were remarkably sturdy though. There is much patriotism on british audio forums for Made-in-Blighty products. Members often equate them with top quality, but my own experience doesn't predispose me to such a rose-tinted view. Made-in-Europe or China is just as good, if not better. The China-made Epos and Quad L speakers I once had were immaculately produced and finished as were the Cambridge Audio components.

    Well, it is a lucky thing for Spendor and Leema that their speakers are assessed primarily for sound quality, nor do I need to use their so-so grilles. On this count, their musicality quotient is collectively higher than their Danish counterparts or Epos/Quad. These LS3/5a-inspired minis sing. The S3/5R's simple front appearance makes it liable to be mistaken for a Tannoy Mercury standmount that has a cut-off treble and bland, flat midrange. Performance-wise, the S3/5R is no budget Tannoy for sure. Once sited properly, it produces wonderful out-of-the-box imaging coupled with a lovely smooth sound that is unmistakably LS3/5a-ish.


    Watch the positioning...

    It has to be noted that the S3/5R's positioning and the size of the room it is used in is of paramount importance to how its finalized presentation is perceived. When I demoed it along withe SA1 at the Spendor dealer's, the room was just too large with no closed boundaries. Both speakers sounded bass-light and I had to make mental estimations as to how much more balanced the speaker would actually sound in my 4x4m study. Ideally, these Spendor mini monitors should not be used in spaces that are larger than 5x5m IMO.

    I also took inspiration from speaker-god Paul Messenger's HFC review of the SA1 that included a box with tips on positioning. He found that moving the SA1 closer to the back walls boosted the 50-125Hz region thereby strengthening the bass response to 50Hz. I also achieved that effect when I put the S3/5R about 25cm away from the rear wall. Sited thus, its bass (although officially specified as 70Hz at -6dB) achieved the same weight as the Epos 12.2 standmount I had which is specified as 55Hz.

    The supposed trade-off of this near-to-wall positioning, according to Messenger, was it made the presence zone less smooth. I didn't hear this effect with most of my music collection. Vocals retained the Spendorian fluidity whether 25 or 50cm away from the rear wall. I may be lucky on this count due to helpful room acoustics. The only exception was string quartet music where a slight lumpiness is evidently when the cello and viola meet each other at the octave around middle C. Pulling the S3/5R out away from the walls brought the smoothness back, but I rarely needed to resort to this as classical chamber music is usually delegated to the ATC.

    Positioned thus within my study, I don't find the S3/5R bass-light at all. It is actually more extended in this region compared to my rear-ported Leema Xeros whose official specs say 58Hz. There are a couple of old pro reviews that looked at the S3/5R's predecessors the S3/5 and S3/5se. The former could sound a 40Hz test tone CD while the latter was audible at that region too (HFW, Oct 2004). Spendor boss Mr Swift claims the S3/5R's bass is improved from its predecessors (TAS, Jun 2008) and my ears hear no reason to disbelieve him. The S3/5R has good bass extension and manages to pick up low notes from cello and bass guitar. This bass extension needs to be qualified though; the S3/5R's LF extension is audible but not propulsively powered out like ATC SCM11's or Dynaudio's Focus 110.

    And therein lies the S3/5R's sole weakness IMO. This is really not a speaker for a young man who's into the latest rock and pop music, an aspect Alan Sircom smartly realized in his review (HFC May 2008). The S3/5R's immense treble refinement can vaporize those dissonant HF spikes in brash rock music and thus tone down this music's visceral aspect. Its extended bass doesn't have the unrelenting clout and interesting 'granite' textures of the SCM11 or Focus 110 to make the most of pounding dance-techno. Play one continuous hour of this music through the S3/5R and the repetitious drum program takes on a monotonal thud-thud-thud quality. If you are really into these kinds of music only, I can count a dozen sub-500 standmounters that will service such needs better, foremost of them is the Epos M12.2 or M12i. Don't spend the extra 250 on this Spendor.


    A ssuperb ssinger of the first rank...

    Perversely, the abovementioned quality of the S3/5R that made it a bit boring with adrenaline-fueled music made it supremely exciting with my favoured music genres. I would say this S3/5R is the most thrilling mini monitor I've owned so far - surpassing the Leema Xero and AVI Neutron IV. The S3/5R has an immaculate smoothness that simply draws me into music that is full of long lines like bel canto opera. You could say it excels at doing legato than sharp staccati (which is probably why pop and rock have comparatively less snap than on the ATC or Leema).

    If the timing of the SCM11 is marked as neutral, comparatively the SA1's timing would be 2% brisker while the S3/5R is 2% behind. This laidback quality allows one's ears to truly luxuriate in vocal and acoustic music. Many times in the past with my previous speakers whenever an opera singer holds a long note, that moment seems too fleeting and has me wishing it would last longer ("Please sir, can I have a lttle more?") With the S3/5R, there is indeed a little more to such held notes. Not so much as to suggest timing distortion but just that infinitesimal extra to indulge the ears. Dame Joan Sutherland's amazing trills and runs in her highest register retain their rapidity but gain an expansive breadth of tone that is amazing. Ditto Maria Calla's lustrous middle register and Monserrat Caballe's famous pianissimi - they hang in the air with ravishing beauty!

    This indulgent ability of the S3/5R has practically stolen the entire opera workload away from the SCM11 (and the ATC is no slouch here either). Add to that its LS3/5a-inherited genes for tonal accuracy, and you get one of the best reproducers of the human voice around. The S3/5R's other strengths are the airy spaciousness of its treble and the uncongested quality of its midrange. It can capture the swelling crescendo of a choir in full flight and impart good definition to its inner dynamics. The choir is heard as a body of singers, yet each singer seems to be operating within his/her individual envelope of dynamics. This is quite amazing given the size of the S3/5R's woofers. As for that airy spaciousness, nothing else shows it off beautifully like plucked notes on acoustic guitar. They are incredibly realistic.


    Thundering MFing ssymphonic greatness...


    The first amp tethered to the S3/5R when it came in was the NAD C326(50W). While it elicited 80% of the S3/5R's potential, musicality shot up a few notches when a vintage MF X-A2 arrived at solidschateau mid-year. The high-current X-A2 is rated at 75W but capable of 95W according to one mag. It really kicked the S3/5R into action and its incisive open treble added brilliance to the S3/5R's arsenal. The X-A2's big bass also helped the S3/5R to sound weightier. The result was a mini monitor that could muster a formidable wall of sound in my study without cracking. With Romantic symphonies it went head to head with my X-T100/SCM11 duo for scale and force.


    A ssuper ssmooth operator enters the arena...

    There is one more twist in the tale. Just when I thought the X-A2 showed off the S3/5R as it was supposed to be appreciated, Arcam's FMJ A28 turned up at solidschateau in the last week of 2010. This was an unpremeditated purchase brought about by the evil eggings on of Arcamites Gsrai, Nsherin and Jammy. I was planning to have a NAIT XS in by mid-Jan. Oh, the perils of membership on a hifi forum!

    So what did the A28 bring to the party? Both had several shared attributes, a spacious top end that never gets aggressive, immense cleanliness and superb reproduction of vocals. Combined, they reinforce each other to create the most refined and fluid sound I have ever had in my domicile. Vocal reproduction took on an intoxicating quality as did acoustic and jazz music. I have been drowning in this sonic beauty eversince and already acquired a half dozen new jazz titles.

    The MF-Spendor pairing holds the advantage for dynamic force with symphonies. Arcam-Spendor doesn't whack as hard but its sound is more sophisticated, transparent and involving. I often come across MF-Spendor recommendations in hifi fora but hardly any for Arcam-Spendor and despite being a MF loyalist, I reckon the S3/5R shines in the company of Arcam. The X-A2 gave it slam but the FMJ A28 transformed it into a jewel.

    The S3/5R's stint at solidschateau has earned Spendor enough goodwill to warrant me taking the SA1 onboard (over Harbeth) when the S3/5R is moved to my new office. I am already aware of its charms but holding out for the possibility of hearing better sound from an Opera rival - the Linea Classica Prima. Time will tell...

    As of now, S3/5R's second honeymoon with its new groom the FMJ A28 is keeping me enthralled with its beautiful sonic creaminess!


    SS



    ^ solidsSpendor S3/5R, one Smooth Operator
    (no, those mandarins aren't the same as the ones on my SCM11)

    SPENDOR S3/5R
    : refined and smooth with excellent imaging
    : tonal accuracy and good bass extension
    : magical with jazz and vocal music (esp.with Arcam wattage)
    : very insensitive; needs a powerful amp
    : must be used within sympathetic room dimensions and boundaries
    : don't buy it to play Prodigy's "Smack My Bitch Up"


    Addendum: the S3/5R is due to be replaced by the S3/5R2 this year. I'm going to give a listen when the opportunity avails to hear how much of an improvement Philip Swift's design team has brought to the successor.



    Last edited by SSM; 25-01-2011 at 01:17 PM. Reason: Vanity;-)
    CONRAD-JOHNSON HD3 & ET3SE > SUN SV-2A3 L.E. 25th Anniv. SE Class A | NAIM DAC V1 > C-J CLASSIC 60SE PP
    PRIMARE DAC30 > AYRE K-5xeMP > 6V6GT SE Class A | audiolab M-DAC
    > ICON AUDIO LA4 MKIII > EL84 SE Class A
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    (modded valve pre) > GENESIS Advanced Tech. M60 (& I60) PP | PRIMARE A34.2 Class D
    OMEGA SUPER ALNICO & 3i Monitors |
    PRECISION 6.2, ELAC BS244, ATC SCM11, S3/5R, Alnico, XERO, DM 2/6, Q 2020i
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  17. #1477
    Super Wammer Sheva's Avatar
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    I'd always considered that the Arcam-Spendor combo would be far too laid back (although our musical tastes do tend to differ and i prefer a bit of Prodigy to Sade any day of the week ).

    What's the power rating of the A28, i guess that may contribute a great deal in this case wrt to the MF?

  18. #1478
    Founding Wammer SSM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sheva View Post
    I'd always considered that the Arcam-Spendor combo would be far too laid back (although our musical tastes do tend to differ and i prefer a bit of Prodigy to Sade any day of the week ).

    What's the power rating of the A28, i guess that may contribute a great deal in this case wrt to the MF?
    The A28 official spec is 75 watts but a measurement in HFC revealed 102 watts instead. Its siblings the A38 and A18 have also exceeded their official ratings in other mags' lab tests.

    And errrm, I don't find the A28 laid-back at all. Like Jammy informed me before I bought mine, it is rather good at the rhythmic stuff. The (unmodified) X-A2 is second to it in this respect. X-A2'SE' closes the gap.

    Despite the Prodigy dig, "Smack My Bitch Up" positively bounced through the A28-S3/5R duo.
    Still, I don't recommend the S3/5R if one listens to hours of Rammstein or Pet Shop Boys.


    SS
    Last edited by SSM; 25-01-2011 at 11:28 AM. Reason: Vanity;-)
    CONRAD-JOHNSON HD3 & ET3SE > SUN SV-2A3 L.E. 25th Anniv. SE Class A | NAIM DAC V1 > C-J CLASSIC 60SE PP
    PRIMARE DAC30 > AYRE K-5xeMP > 6V6GT SE Class A | audiolab M-DAC
    > ICON AUDIO LA4 MKIII > EL84 SE Class A
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    (modded valve pre) > GENESIS Advanced Tech. M60 (& I60) PP | PRIMARE A34.2 Class D
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    PRECISION 6.2, ELAC BS244, ATC SCM11, S3/5R, Alnico, XERO, DM 2/6, Q 2020i
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  19. #1479
    Wammer nsherin's Avatar
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    Arcam seems to have a gorgeous synergy with Wharfedale too, from my experiences with the FMJ A18 and Diamond 10.3 floorstanders. Deep, punchy bass that does not overwhelm. Plenty of detail, layers of sounds and transparency but without getting too bright or fatiguing. Vocals bring out real soul and emotion in the music. The FMJ can also party too - feed it some dance/electronica and it grooves along nicely. It does laid back when required but there is plenty of drive and slam with rock too!

    In short, the combination is addictive, toe-tapping and engaging and you'll be coming back for more! I've had too many late nights of late, as I'm up listening to music!
    Apple TV 3, NAD C315BEE/C541i, Project Phono Box E, Rega P1, Sony MDS-JB980/PS3/ST-S261 Slim, Samsung UE40D5520, Wharfedale Diamond 10.3, Yamaha KX-580

  20. #1480
    Founding Wammer SSM's Avatar
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    I reckon it has to do with the Kevlar woofers. I am not partial to this material for speaker cones (owned the Quad 12L, Diamond 8.2 and 9.0) as I have heard it sounding overly rich and woolly with other amplification in the past, but I demoed the A38 with B&W's CM9 and was taken with the quality of the sound coming off those Kevlars. The FMJ amps' taut and crisp control in the nether regions is probably just the right attribute that draws out Kevlar's richness without dragging it into morass.

    I liked the Diamond 9.1's sound and thought the treble had unusual refinement for such an affordable standmount. Its designer had defnitely taken cues from the Beeb-box sound when he implemented the 9 series. The 10s probably continue the influence. A 10.1 could find its way into solidschateau for some fun with the A28 when time avails. It's such a good-looking and curvaceous little speaker.

    As for the FMJ's seemingly laid-back nature, it can shift into a faster gear when the music requires it. I am surprised as Arcam often gets saddled with pipe 'n slippers tag on forums. The A28 doesn't attack brutally like a Nait XS but neither is it waffly (like a Marantz), nor shouty (like a Nait 5i...)

    Keep listening!

    SS
    Last edited by SSM; 06-02-2011 at 02:24 AM.
    CONRAD-JOHNSON HD3 & ET3SE > SUN SV-2A3 L.E. 25th Anniv. SE Class A | NAIM DAC V1 > C-J CLASSIC 60SE PP
    PRIMARE DAC30 > AYRE K-5xeMP > 6V6GT SE Class A | audiolab M-DAC
    > ICON AUDIO LA4 MKIII > EL84 SE Class A
    MUSICAL FIDELITY X-T100
    (modded valve pre) > GENESIS Advanced Tech. M60 (& I60) PP | PRIMARE A34.2 Class D
    OMEGA SUPER ALNICO & 3i Monitors |
    PRECISION 6.2, ELAC BS244, ATC SCM11, S3/5R, Alnico, XERO, DM 2/6, Q 2020i
    SS relics: REGA ELICIT, ARCAM A38, Musical Fidelity X-A2, NAIM NAP 100, QUAD 909, SONY TA-F246E | MiniWatt N3

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