What's your favorite sub/bookshelf combo? [Archive] - Audio & Video Forums


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06-30-2004, 01:49 PM
Lately after listening to many speakers, bookshelf and floorstanders, as well as hearing much live music I've come to the conclusion that it would probably be better to just go with a sub/sattelite system. It seems that unless you spend mega bucks for really good floorstanders that the bass is usually sloppy and obscures the midrange. I've heard quite a few bookshelf speakers that were really nice sounding but lacked that "punch" that a tympani makes or a rock and roll kick drum does. I would just like some ideas for sub/sattelite combos to audition. I was thinking along the line of the Paradigm Monitor 5 speakers with maybe the new seismic subs that Paradigm makes. For the speakers, stands, and sub I'd like to spend between $1,500 and $2,000. The speakers I have the convenience of auditioning are Paradigm, Energy, Dynaudio, Joseph Audio, and JM Lab. I'm not interested in planars or stats either because of their size and uneven sound. Any other combo ideas would be appreciated. I like an sweet extended treble(not artificially sweet, rolled off or hard, clean bass(no fattened qualities or tubiness), and a midrange that is by NO means projected or nasal. Just a wee bit laid back is what I like. Kind of like being 10 rows back at a classical concert. Thanks everyone!

This Guy
06-30-2004, 05:03 PM
Well I have no comment on bookshelves, but I do have a suggestion for a sub. Since it's just for music, I'd get a servo controlled sub. Maybe a used Paradigm or Velodyne servo 15. And if you're into the DIY stuff, here's a kit that got good reviews from hometheatrehifi.com . I've been reccomending it but nobody seemed very interested. Here's the link to their home page.


Rythmik is a very popular subwoofer amplifier in the DIY community so you know it's not crap. I"m just saying take a look. If you're interested in DIY, partsexpress.com does have some hi end speaker kits, but you don't know what they sound like.


06-30-2004, 10:00 PM
I'm not a huge fan of sub satellite combos in this price range - just personal taste. It's not really right to compare live to a system - the recordings simply are not the same - finding a speaker that get the tone or timbre of an instrument correct is one thing to play it loud enough is another and then to play several at once another again. A two way standmount and a sub becomes a three way with one less woofer. Many of them have no real deep bass just play certain bass frequencies louder. Mostly it depends on the sub - I always hear a hick-up with subs.

The best thing to do is compare in your price range - say a Monitor 5 and sub combo comes to $1500.00Cdn and compare that to $1500.00Cdn speakers. For $1500.00 to $2000.00 US - you can afford to move up from the Paradigms. And plenty of excellent used/demo speakers are abound which should be fairly full range and more coherent top to bottom than sub satelites can muster.

Enjoy your hunt either way you go.

N. Abstentia
06-30-2004, 10:07 PM
For $2000 you can get a Paradigm Servo 15 and a pair of Studio 20's. Talk about a sweeeet combo that would take some major bucks to beat, that's it. Yeah you'll go a bit over the $2000 budget to get stands, but it will be worth the extra $200 or so in the long run, you'll have those speakers for years to come. And if you buy all that the dealer will probably make you a deal anyway so you might get it all for $2000. Also ask your dealer if he has some v2 or trade-in Studio 20's, that will save a few bucks!

07-01-2004, 05:24 AM
What you may consider inquiring with the company owners about the Odyssey (http://www.odysseyaudio.com) Ephiphony and the Rocket (http://www.av123.com) UFW-10. I believe that combination could be what you are searching for. If nothing else, the owners should be able to guide you in the right direction, even if it is something they do not make.

07-01-2004, 06:35 AM
as far as speakers go, you may want to listen to the Dynaudio audience (52, 62, 72) and JM labs first to get a reference. The 52 is a super speaker. The Dynaudio floorstanders (62, 72) sound very good and with good amplification, there's no flabby bass. You may find that is all the bass you need, as the 60 works nice in my setup without a sub. Energy has Conoussour C-3 & C-5 which are very good for the money and present a sweet kind of laid back sound you may be looking for, where the Dyn is a bit more articulate. Again the C-5 floorstander may be all the bass you need, then you could put some of the $$ toward good amplification rather than a sub. The Paradigm monitor series is not on the same playing field, you would have to look at the studios. And don't forget the used market like audiogon.com, plenty of deals there...Bring a variety of CD's and go listen, then give us some feedback!

audiorevolution on the Energy C-5

"The new Connoisseur C5s have no business being only $750 speakers. If you are shopping for more expensive speakers, I urge you to audition these first, because they could easily be priced at twice their cost. I know the C5s will rock home theaters and new formats like DVD-Audio and SACD, which need strong bass response and clear vocal articulation.

Energy did a fine job of bringing much of the high-end technology from its more expensive speakers down into reasonably-priced and attractive new speakers. The C5s are the right size, they look sexy and they sound silk-smooth with a lightly laid-back character. The bar has been raised."

what hi-fi? on the Dynaudio 52

"Set up on solid stands and positioned at least 30cm from the rear wall, the Dynaudios produce a soundstage thatís impressively expansive. The integration between the in-house drive units is immaculate, resulting in a cohesion and openness that really draws the listener into the music.

Play Missy Elliotís latest set and the combination of terrific dynamics and pinpoint rhythmical precision insures the music storms along on a wave of thumping basslines and hard-hitting drum machines.

Unlike most rivals here, these speakers are perfectly happy at higher volume settings too, and have no trouble coping with the Gladiator soundtrack at kidney-vibrating levels.

The Audience 52ís are hard to fault. Take care to partner them with an amplifier thatís punchy and dynamic and they could well blow you away."

07-06-2004, 05:20 AM
I would consider a used pair of Tyler Acoustics Taylo Reference Monitors, with the matching custom stands. There are several pairs of these used on Audiogon starting at $1100 including the stands. I can safely say that these are absolutely *fabulous* monitors for that price (or even their new price of $1825). They use top quality drivers like the Seas Excel series metalic 7 inch mid/bass and the Scanspeak 9900 Revelator tweeter... Great combo, IMO.

I would then look to pair them with a quality subwoofer like a used ACI Titan II (or Titan II LE). These are hard to come by though, but if you find one, it should be able to be had for about $700-800.

If the ACI is not available, then I would agree with Bryan's suggestion of the Rocket sub... I just got one for my dad. Probably not your best choice for HT, but if musical listening is your priority, it is a very good choice at the $599 price point (available at av123.com).

By the way, I am currently using 3 of the Taylos for my front 3 channels in my HT/multichannel music system (3 Legacy Studios are the rear 3) paired with the Titan II. The combo works very well, IMO.

Good luck.