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  1. #1
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    Floorstanders $500-$1000

    Hey everyone. I will soon be auditioning floorstanding speakers in the $500-$1000 price range to replace a pair of B&W DM601s2 speakers in a secondary two-channel system. The only reason for their replacement is the topple-over factor. Perched atop their stands they are too easily susceptable to being knocked to their demise by a child or unknowing adult.

    My shortlist includes the following in order of inital preference:
    B&W DM602.5s3
    KEF Q5
    KEF Q3
    Paradigm Monitor 7
    Energy C5
    Paradigm Phantom

    Associated electronics include an NAD C340 Integrated Amp, a Cambridge Audio D300 CD Player, a cheap Panasonic DVD player, Sony VCR, and 27" Toshiba TV. The system is secondary and is mainly used for TV viewing but is occasionally used for music listening while doing other things or, in rare cases, to watch a DVD or video tape.

    While I am aware the small floorstanders as listed above can still be knocked over, they'd take a little more effort to get tipping than the standmounts I have now.

    I realize compromises are made in every speaker, let alone sub-$1000 floorstanders but critical listening is not done on this system at all. In fact I'm contemplating adding a digitial music server to it to stream my 600+ CD's from my PC if I ever get around to ripping them to the HD.

    I'm looking for anyone's experience with any of the above speaker models, I've already read the reviews on this site.

    The only other manufacturers available to me are Monitor Audio, Totem, Mirage, Sapphire, Martin Logan, Boston Acoustics, Polk, Infinity, Definitive Technology, and Klipsch. I've ruled them out because they're either not in my price range or I do not like their sound.

    Thanks in advance for your help.

    BillB

  2. #2
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    audition the 603s3's if you can.Personally i prefer them over the 602.5s3's.Just an opinion.

  3. #3
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    enrique,

    I plan to but the 603's are stretching the budget. As I said, I'm perfectly happy with the sound of the 601's for what they're used for and the 602.5 is basically that same speaker in a floorstanding cabinet which gives it a tad more bass extension as a result.

    The one thing that's nice about the 603 is it's a little bit taller, the 602.5 is a short little thing, as is the KEF Q3.

    BillB
    Last edited by BillB; 01-24-2005 at 09:49 AM. Reason: Add info

  4. #4
    Suspended topspeed's Avatar
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    Two options:
    1) Keep your 601's but mass load the stand and Blu-Tak the speaker to the top plate. I did this with my VR-1's and when my 2 yr old ran into it, I assure you he came away the worse for wear.

    2) Go with a floorstander. All a larger standmount will do is be more top heavy and therefore more prone to tipping (unless you do #1). Outside of what you've listed, you might try consider these Wharfedales as the manufacturer reallys seems to be coming on strong in the past couple of years. I've also heard good things about Athena in this price bracket.

    Hope this helps.

  5. #5
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    Check out PSB's (Psbspeakers.com) They are a great match for the NAD. I have a NAD C350 amp and 521 CD player connected to the PSB Stratus Bronze ($1000), which they dont make anymore and the sound is great! Try the *new* Image T55, I have seen some good reviews of the image series.

  6. #6
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    matt,

    Thanks for the suggestion but I do not have a PSB dealer in my area, though I've heard good things about their speakers.

    I really like the NAD/B&W/Cambridge Audio combo a lot...my Brit Kit so to speak. That's another reason I'd prefer to stick with B&W.

    A review in IHiFi Choice of the B&W 602.5s3 stated that it's below average sensitivity and wide swing in impedance could be a challenge to the amplifier. NAD's amps are known for their conservative power ratings and deep power reserves so I wonder if the 50 X 2 would have a problem or not.

    I'm familiar with the Paradigm sound as I own Studio 100 and 20's and have auditioned members of both the Performance and Monitor Series but my one audition of Energy speakers was not a good one. I believe it was the eXL Series a few years back that just didn't hold a candle to the B&W 600v2 Series or Paradigm Studiov2 Series at the time. My dealer does now carry the Connoisseur Series so I figured I'd at least give the C5 a shot.

    BillB

  7. #7
    BooBs are elitist jerks shokhead's Avatar
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    Whats avg sensitivity? I thought 601 and 602 were not floor standers?
    Look & Listen

  8. #8
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    shokhead,

    The 602.5 is a brand new model in the 600 Series in the series' third incarnation. It basically uses identical drivers to the 601 and 602 but in a floorstanding cabinet.

    The average sensitivity is slightly below normal at 88dB. Here's a quote from the HiFi Choice review on the impedance:

    Otherwise, B&W's crossover network ensures the '602.5 provides some big swings in impedance (39 to 2.9ohm) and phase (+/-63/48 degrees) for the amp to deal with.
    BillB

  9. #9
    BooBs are elitist jerks shokhead's Avatar
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    Wow,i'll have to check out B&W website.
    Look & Listen

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