Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 39
  1. #1
    Forum Regular fahrenheights's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    7

    Floorstanding vs. bookshelf + sub

    Hi I'm new to this forum been lurking for the past week or so and would greatly appreciate an opinion.

    I'm looking to buy some new speakers for a bedroom (11' x 15' approx.)

    Right now I've got a Yamaha YST 315 subwoofer and MY QUESTION IS if I should get a pair of decent bookshelves (looking at NHT classic 3, B&W 602) to go with the sub, OR sell/remove the sub and instead get some decent floorstanders (like the B&W 603 or 604).

    Solely for music not movies, i listen at varying volume levels; loud at times, quiet at times. All types of music (lots of electronic); both analog and digital recordings.

    My amp is an old JVC which i will most likely replace after a speaker purchase with a budget NAD or Rotel intergrated.

    One concern w/ floorstanders is if they might be too big for a bedroom (sound-wise not physically).

    Any other brand recommendations would be great, too. Budget is ~$750 USD.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Ajani
    Guest
    Floorstanders would work just fine in your room.... Bookshelves & Sub versus floorstanders tends to come down to personal tastes more than anything else...

    I favor floorstanders for a few reasons:

    1) I've never heard a sub that I liked... they've all sounded way too boomy and more like HT than music (Though to be fair, most subs I've heard were clearly aimed more at HT than Music)...

    2) By the time I add the cost of stands and a sub, I've usually reached or exceeded the cost of the comparable floorstander (which I find sounds better)

    3) Floorstanders look better to me than a book/stand/sub setup....

    However, if you find that the Yamaha sub sounds acceptable to you, then you might be able to pair it with a nice pair of bookshelves and a cheap stand.... But in your position I'd just sell the sub and get some nice towers... either the B&Ws you mentioned or maybe some used Monitor Audio RS6s.....

  3. #3
    Forum Regular Kevio's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    452
    As for the sound, it is a matter of preference. I personally prefer to have bass come from the same speaker enclosures as the rest of the music. You have a system with sub now and seem to be OK with it. When compared to reasonable sized floorstanding speakers, a system with a sub will probably give you a more extended bass response. You'll probably appreciate that for electronic music.

    As for logistics, speakers that have good bass response (floor standing and subwoofer) can be sensitive to placement. In a small room, you're probably going to have limited placement options to experiment with. The bookshelves probably won't be fussy - you'll just have to mess with the placement and setup of the sub (and you've probably already done that).

  4. #4
    Forum Regular blackraven's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    St. Paul, Minnesota
    Posts
    5,421
    Go with the B&W 683's. They have better bass and a bigger and better sound than the 684's which are not really an improvement over the 685 bookshelfs. I listened to all three as well as the NHT Classic Three's which I really like.

    The NHT's have a totally different sound than the B&W's. The Classic 3 has excellent bass and a warmer, smoother sound compared to the B&W's. The B&W's have better resolution and more prominent treble and sound a little brighter which some people take as sounding better. I find that after about 30 minutes this becomes fatiguing.

    But it all boils down to what you personally prefer. If you go with the bookshelf's you will need to spend about $100-150 for a good pair of speaker stands.

    Good luck!

    As far as the sub goes, you may find that you don't need it with the NHT's.
    Pass Labs X250 amp, BAT Vk-51se Preamp,
    Thorens TD-145 TT, Bellari phono preamp, Nagaoka MP-200 Cartridge
    Magnepan QR1.6 speakers
    Luxman DA-06 DAC
    Van Alstine Ultra Plus Hybrid Tube DAC
    Dual Martin Logan Original Dynamo Subs
    Parasound A21 amp
    Vintage Luxman T-110 tuner
    Magnepan MMG's, Grant Fidelity DAC-11, Class D CDA254 amp
    Monitor Audio S1 speakers, PSB B6 speakers
    Vintage Technic's Integrated amp
    Music Hall 25.2 CDP
    Adcom GFR 700 AVR
    Cables- Cardas, Silnote, BJC
    Velodyne CHT 8 sub

  5. #5
    AR Newbie Registered Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    4
    I had front firing bass port RB-25's at ceiling corner's. They could really move the music around that way. I added a sub for fuller sound. Could have lived with this set-up for years. You will get fuller bass with tower speaker's, more cabinet volume is key. Slimmer towers help them to disappear sonically. Height helps raise the soundstage. Can be real difficult to attain a balanced sound with satelites and sub.

  6. #6
    Retro Modernist 02audionoob's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Posts
    2,908
    It's a matter of personal preference, but keep in mind the larger enclosure will change the tone of speakers...even within the same line. A 2-way bookshelf might sound bright compared to a 3-way tower with the same or similar drivers. The tower could sound boomy or muffled by direct comparison to the bookshelf. Neither is inherently better or worse, but they'll be different.

    My own opinion...I'm on the market for larger speakers and they seem to be disappointing when I listen to them. I guess I subconsciously want them to sound like my bookshelf + sub setup.

  7. #7
    Forum Regular fahrenheights's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    7
    Thanks y'all for your input. I'm still not sure what the heck to get.

    Guess I should go for some listening tests at the audio store tomorrow and hear a bit of variety... Last time I only heard B&Ws but am curious about the NHTs now. Though I must admit looks do matter which is why I like the B&Ws and saw those Monitor Audio's as well they look quite respectable.

    Also, just looking at the specs, the floorstanders go down to about 30-40hz whereas a sub goes down to 20hz or lower (can't hear that low but you can feel it!).

  8. #8
    Forum Regular winston's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    mia fl
    Posts
    451
    (personal tastes & preference)
    I'll say the same,.... my vote goes for floor-standers, for music (stereo) BUT even if your choice is (bookshelf) subs add boomings to 80 percent of the diffrent types of music that we listen to........ speaking of which i use two POLK- PSW505 for my HT however when its music/stereo time" OFF THEY GO as l like to hear lows (not feel my lows).....

  9. #9
    Ajani
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by winston
    (personal tastes & preference)
    I'll say the same,.... my vote goes for floor-standers, for music (stereo) BUT even if your choice is (bookshelf) subs add boomings to 80 percent of the diffrent types of music that we listen to........ speaking of which i use two POLK- PSW505 for my HT however when its music/stereo time" OFF THEY GO as l like to hear lows (not feel my lows).....
    I'm with you on that... rattling windows and vibrations in my chest are great for explosions in movies, but are just distracting and annoying with music...

  10. #10
    Retro Modernist 02audionoob's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Posts
    2,908
    In my 2-channel setup, I have the sub level knob set to about the 9:00 position. In my HT setup, it's around the 1:00 position.

  11. #11
    Forum Regular fahrenheights's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    7
    Yeah I too have my sub cutoff around 60hz as I do dislike the boomy or muddy bass that most subs produce in their upper ranges. I'm just worried if I get floorstanders I'll miss those low end sub bass tones... of course, I suppose I can get floorstanders and keep the sub as well O.o

    That being said, it's rare that a musical recording emphasizes that low of bass as an important part of the music, dub & dubstep really are the only genres I can think of.

    I'm leaning towards floorstanding speakers now as I do enjoy a more 'fuller' sound...

  12. #12
    Forum Regular blackraven's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    St. Paul, Minnesota
    Posts
    5,421
    Get some PSB Synchrony's and they will make you forget about a sub. Stereophile Class A all the way! They have great sound and great bass.

    If your interested in Monitor Audio, check out www.saturdayaudio.com I bought a pair of S1 bookshelfs for my bedroom from them.
    Pass Labs X250 amp, BAT Vk-51se Preamp,
    Thorens TD-145 TT, Bellari phono preamp, Nagaoka MP-200 Cartridge
    Magnepan QR1.6 speakers
    Luxman DA-06 DAC
    Van Alstine Ultra Plus Hybrid Tube DAC
    Dual Martin Logan Original Dynamo Subs
    Parasound A21 amp
    Vintage Luxman T-110 tuner
    Magnepan MMG's, Grant Fidelity DAC-11, Class D CDA254 amp
    Monitor Audio S1 speakers, PSB B6 speakers
    Vintage Technic's Integrated amp
    Music Hall 25.2 CDP
    Adcom GFR 700 AVR
    Cables- Cardas, Silnote, BJC
    Velodyne CHT 8 sub

  13. #13
    Retro Modernist 02audionoob's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Posts
    2,908
    Quote Originally Posted by fahrenheights

    That being said, it's rare that a musical recording emphasizes that low of bass as an important part of the music, dub & dubstep really are the only genres I can think of.

    Perhaps...but Diana Krall's The Look of Love makes my sub work pretty hard.


    Quote Originally Posted by fahrenheights

    I'm leaning towards floorstanding speakers now as I do enjoy a more 'fuller' sound...
    If you make the move to floorstanding, I would suggest you pay close attention to the midrange when you audition them.
    Last edited by 02audionoob; 01-11-2009 at 08:08 AM.

  14. #14
    Music Junkie E-Stat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Posts
    5,462

    Different take

    Quote Originally Posted by fahrenheights
    MY QUESTION IS if I should get a pair of decent bookshelves (looking at NHT classic 3, B&W 602) to go with the sub, OR sell/remove the sub and instead get some decent floorstanders
    I favor the small monitor / EQed subs (plural) route for two reasons:

    1. Ideally, one would have complete flexibility of speaker and furniture placement along with employing enough bass traps to adequately battle room modes and ensure truly neutral bass response. Unfortunately, such is not practical in most environments. (I am quite fortunate in that one of my systems does use that approach) Using a parametric or third octave EQ on the subs only (crossed over high enough to be valuable), however, can achieve that goal in less flexible spaces without compromising the integrity of the full range signal.

    2. Since the low end tends to require more power and thus tendency to clip amplifiers, bi-amping separates the sins of the woofers from that of the rest of the signal.


    Quote Originally Posted by fahrenheights
    ...it's rare that a musical recording emphasizes that low of bass as an important part of the music
    I'll disagree there. "Weight" is as important to classical music as it is to many popular genres.

    rw
    Last edited by E-Stat; 01-11-2009 at 01:12 PM.

  15. #15
    Forum Regular
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    34
    I'm looking to buy some new speakers for a bedroom (11' x 15' approx.)
    That's a pretty small space, I'd go with bookshelves for sure. I'd recommend some JBL L830's, they are inexpensive and good quality. A inexpensive Rotel amp would power these nicely.

    I own these and posted about them on the "reviews" section. My advise ( if you're asking) is don't be dazzled and awed by high priced speakers and assume that more money gets more perfomance - not always so. Are the Array Series from JBL better than the L830's? You betcha, but look at the price differential. Remember that most of what you are listening to is the room itself. I'm not bad mouthing B & W or NHT - not at all - but don't dismiss JBL or Energy as mass-market budget crap. These two companies (and others) have science and scientists behind thier products, many many speaker companies do not have the financial backing to accomplish repeated excellence through scientific testing - the R & D is too expensive for most speaker companies.( Keep in mind this advice and the products I'm suggesting are geared to your price point. )

    I was in the speaker business and I drank a lot of the Cool-Aid fed to me by smooth talking reps. and I'm wiser for the experience.

    Recommended

    JBL - L830's on stands
    Rotel Amp - You can get a pretty good used one on ebay - cheap
    Sub? - that's your call, see how the speaker sound first. A good sub is expensive and may be beyond what you are ready to spend right now.

    Hope this helps........

  16. #16
    Class of the clown GMichael's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Anywhere but here...
    Posts
    13,243
    I am leaning more towards Estat's comments. Placement of a sub is easier than trying to place speakers to accommodate the highs and the lows at the same time. An Eq for the sub will help with that HT (one note wonder) sound. Plus it reduces the drain on your amp. Smaller speakers are normally easier to drive than full range speakers. They are easier to place. And the money you are sending is going strictly towards the mids and highs. This can let you get a notch better quality on the drivers.
    WARNING! - The Surgeon General has determined that, time spent listening to music is not deducted from one's lifespan.

  17. #17
    Forum Regular fahrenheights's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    7
    Hi guys thanks for the thorough responses.
    I picked up a pair of Classic Three's
    I got them for a good price brand new... I heard they take awhile to break in, so here goes..

    Quote Originally Posted by E-Stat
    I favor the small monitor / EQed subs (plural) route for two reasons:

    1. Ideally, one would have complete flexibility of speaker and furniture placement along with employing enough bass traps to adequately battle room modes and ensure truly neutral bass response. Unfortunately, such is not practical in most environments. (I am quite fortunate in that one of my systems does use that approach) Using a parametric or third octave EQ on the subs only (crossed over high enough to be valuable), however, can achieve that goal in less flexible spaces without compromising the integrity of the full range signal.

    2. Since the low end tends to require more power and thus tendency to clip amplifiers, bi-amping separates the sins of the woofers from that of the rest of the signal.

    rw
    Hi E-stat. I'm not sure I completely understand the setup your trying to describe...
    How many amps does it require?
    Thanks

  18. #18
    Forum Regular
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Adelaide, South Australia
    Posts
    231
    My personal preference is to go for floorstanders, unless you are constrained by space (which might be the case here).

    With bookshelf speakers and a sub, you may face the problem of getting the crossover point right. There could be a danger of a 'hole in the middle' effect, if the lower frequency response of the speakers tails off too much before the subwoofer kicks in. Careful matching may be important.
    All we are saying, is give peas a chance.

  19. #19
    Forum Regular fahrenheights's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    7
    I ended up going with bookshelves because, well space is limited, it's a smal//med size bdrm and i didn't want to get floorstanders if i couldn't "open" them up as they deserve to be. These NHT's seem plenty loud and punchy, and a considerable upgrade from what I had going on before... and they do match my room quite well

    As for the crossover, right now i have it set at 60hz and playing with the volume

  20. #20
    Forum Regular
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Location
    Long Island, New York
    Posts
    494

    Congrats, enjoy...

    Quote Originally Posted by fahrenheights
    I ended up going with bookshelves because, well space is limited, it's a smal//med size bdrm and i didn't want to get floorstanders if i couldn't "open" them up as they deserve to be. These NHT's seem plenty loud and punchy, and a considerable upgrade from what I had going on before... and they do match my room quite well

    As for the crossover, right now i have it set at 60hz and playing with the volume
    ...I'm getting great results with my JMRs and a REL Strata III as well.

    I don't feel a 3-piece system will save any space (probably uses more), but it can allow one (budget-wise) to get the mids and HF "right", then add the bass/foundation whenever.

    Yes, a floor-stander usually plays louder, is more sensitive, and obviously doesn't need stands... BUT, let's see... $1300 for my mains, $1300 for the REL, so it's $2600 - I haven't heard a floor speaker in that price range that can pressurize the room as well. Granted, I like it a little "fat" at times... at least I can adjust the amount of bass vs. the specific recording...

    Many times a sub in general will get a bad rap... that's usually because they are misused. Mine is set at about 36 cycles, just enough to compliment the Twins. Try a lower x-over setting if you have any problems w/ "boominess".

    That's another thing you touched on... a multi-driver speaker will need space to coalesce, or "gel". If I had a huge livingroom, I might have to look up the JMR line!

    Things get expensive in a hurry there... :*)

  21. #21
    AR Newbie Registered Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    2
    I would go for a decent set of floorstanders because the sound quality in all frequency ranges are more accurate, but i would advise on keeping the sub just to add that bit of bass if ever needed

  22. #22
    Forum Regular
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Adelaide, South Australia
    Posts
    231
    Quote Originally Posted by Ajani
    I'm with you on that... rattling windows and vibrations in my chest are great for explosions in movies, but are just distracting and annoying with music...
    But wouldn't the subwoofer only kick in when there are frequencies low enough for it? I would expect that most music simply wouldn't go sufficiently low for that to happen (with the possible exception of pipe organ music).

    In contrast, the low frequency rumbles and explosions in movie soundtracks are special effects that are deliberately added to sound impressive.
    All we are saying, is give peas a chance.

  23. #23
    Forum Regular blackraven's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    St. Paul, Minnesota
    Posts
    5,421
    Great choice on the NHT Classic Three's. I really like the sound, warm and good midbass punch for a bookshelf. Being a three way speaker it sounds less strained in the midrange. I prefer it over the B&W 685's.
    Pass Labs X250 amp, BAT Vk-51se Preamp,
    Thorens TD-145 TT, Bellari phono preamp, Nagaoka MP-200 Cartridge
    Magnepan QR1.6 speakers
    Luxman DA-06 DAC
    Van Alstine Ultra Plus Hybrid Tube DAC
    Dual Martin Logan Original Dynamo Subs
    Parasound A21 amp
    Vintage Luxman T-110 tuner
    Magnepan MMG's, Grant Fidelity DAC-11, Class D CDA254 amp
    Monitor Audio S1 speakers, PSB B6 speakers
    Vintage Technic's Integrated amp
    Music Hall 25.2 CDP
    Adcom GFR 700 AVR
    Cables- Cardas, Silnote, BJC
    Velodyne CHT 8 sub

  24. #24
    Forum Regular audio amateur's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    France
    Posts
    2,523
    Quote Originally Posted by blackraven
    Great choice on the NHT Classic Three's. I really like the sound, warm and good midbass punch for a bookshelf. Being a three way speaker it sounds less strained in the midrange. I prefer it over the B&W 685's.
    So in effect you're saying your 1.6's sound more strained in the midrange?

  25. #25
    Ajani
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by emesbee
    But wouldn't the subwoofer only kick in when there are frequencies low enough for it? I would expect that most music simply wouldn't go sufficiently low for that to happen (with the possible exception of pipe organ music).

    In contrast, the low frequency rumbles and explosions in movie soundtracks are special effects that are deliberately added to sound impressive.
    Subwoofers can be set fairly high, into the frequency range already covered by a pair of small monitors... In my experiences (so far) with SUB/Monitor combos, the sub tends to dominate the proceedings and just makes itself too obvious... It reminds me of when you press the Extra Bass button on a cheapy mini-system... suddenly even songs that were not bass heavy sound like the belong on a Dr Dre album... Maybe one day I'll hear a properly integrated sub/monitor combo that will change my mind... but so far I've just not been impressed...

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •