Solved! Warm (bookshelf) speakers under $500 [need help]

cirjakvoja

Estimable
Oct 27, 2015
61
2
4,585
0
Hello dear tom's guide users... it's been a while since I used this forum and am more than happy to come back to this community! If you know the answer to the first part (1), second (2) or both, just put the number in front of your answer so they don't get mixed.. it would start looking messy and confusing fairly quickly. ~ I would appreciate if you could carefully read the whole text (if you have the time) and if you refer to a specific part to quote it so it's easier to follow. Thank you!

1. I have decided to continue my research for a pair of bookshelf speakers which sound warm and have good bass. Some information about myself and the use of speakers: I generally dislike harsh treble and bright speakers and am trying to avoid at all cost fatiguing speakers. I really enjoy bass and it's one of the most important elements in music for me. That being said I dont want a speaker which has overpowered/overdone bass and buddy mids, I just want to have a speaker which will deliver the nice (smooth) bass. I will use the speakers for listening to music (probably through my PC). I listen to hip-hop/rap the most however I really enjoy 80's and 90's music. I also really enjoy a good vocal in music, by that I mean like that of Freddie Mercury and The Weeknd (I enjoy these two guys the most, they give me chills). I plan to use them near/mid-field (more its more on the near-field side it's just that I want always be right in front of them, I might move a couple of meters away from them from time to time) and am planning to use them in a room that's around 20 square meters to 25 square meters (215 -269 squared feet). They will most likely be used on a DIY made stand mount, also I don't think that they will be very far from the wall (I am looking forward into using my computer while listening to music). I might get a subwoofer in the future but that option should not be counted on because if I do decide for a subwoofer it probably wont be the same purchase as with my speakers.. that's due to my budget.

I am looked to hear your recommendations on a pair of warm sounding speakers that will deliver good bass (that being said the mids should also be well done). I am aware that I am being very specific and picky and that it's near impossible to find a perfect speaker. I'm just trying my best to find one that will suit me under this price point. If you have any monitor speaker recommendations, I would also be interested (budget for an active monitor speaker would be 500-600 eur/ 567/680 usd)

2. If you have the information and knowledge I would appreciate if you could give me your opinion and comments about this part as well, I am posting it here because I don't think it's the best idea to start another thread.

Over 1-2 years of research I have come down to the following (which doesn't mean this is correct): The Monitor Audio Bronze 2 have been recommended to me the most. I was told to stay away from Kef Q300 and Dali Zensor 3 and Klipsch speakers. What is interesting is that when I asked a guy called Zero Fidelity, he recommended me the Dali Zensor 3's and... I will continue with this part in a second. I listened to the Monitor Audio Bronze 2's and was surely not impressed, I was convincing myself that there was something wrong with me... there has to be more to this speaker because everyone's talking about it. The bass was the thing that got be unsatisfied with the speaker... I don't know where the demo went wrong, maybe it was because of the amplifier/receiver (I dont remember which one it was). I will listen to them again, that being said I didn't give up on them.
I have looked what's available to me at this price point an have come down to many options: price ascending
Canton GLE 426 (314 usd, 279 eur)
Canton Chrono 502.2 (400 usd, 355 eur)
Canton Chrono 512 (457 usd, 406 eur)
MA Bronze 2 (388 usd, 345 eur)
Jamo C93 (366 usd, 326 eur)
B&W 686S2 (452 usd or 400 eur)
Focal Chorus 706 (506 usd a pair, 450 eur a pair)
B&W 607 (565 usd or 500 eur) a bit over my budget


I haven't heard a lot about the Canton's and Focal's although they look promising, if you have any opinion/experience please let me know anything about them. The difference between the three Canton's from my understanding is the following: GLE is the smallest and lightest of them, apparently it has the biggest woofer 6.3" (im not sure that this is correct, it says it on their site however the size in mm is the same as the other) and has a fabric 1" tweeter, unlike the 502.2 and 512 which feature an aluminum-manganese 1" tweeter. Now the difference between the 502.2 and the 512 is that 512 is heavier and a little bigger and features a titanium driver unlike the aluminium driver of the 502.2.

Jamo C93's have caught my attention the most, I am not quite sure why. I really like the look of them and they look very silky. On some other forums I have been told that generally speaking (unwritten rule) speakers with metal tweeters will have a brighter sound and tilted up treble. If I was to follow this "rule" then I should avoid MA Bronze 2's, all Cantons except the GLE 426's, Focal Chorus 706's and both B&W speakers. Now I am sure that this is not correct, also Zero Fidelity told me that this doesn't have to mean that. He also told me that "almost all speakers mentioned above" are tilted up and the only speakers he thinks fit my "taste" would be the Dali Zensor 3's and some Q Acoustic speakers, also he mentioned Polk Audio S10's which are not available to me just like the Elac's. This has got me confused and all over the place... why? Because on other forums people told me to stay away from Dali Zensor 3 because they would be bright for me.. just like Kef's, Klipsch's etc. I've heard that the B&W have some characteristics of Elacs such as rich bass and they were also recommended in this price range (i think that i've seen the 607's being recommended in this price range a couple of times)

I have also been recommended some monitor speakers such as the Adam A3x (512 usd/452 eur), Adam F7 (570 usd/500 eur)and some over the budget A7/A8x. Also the Focal Alpha 65's (612 usd/540 eur) have been recommended to me. I am open to monitor's because some have said that there are such monitor speakers which can both be used for music production and hifi listening. I am planning to possible make music in the future but that's not certain and therefore am looking for a hifi set of speakers. Also I am informed that most monitor speakers are meant to be neutral for production purposes unlike hifi speakers which have a signature.


~I would appreciate long and detailed answers very much. I would be more than happy if you could explain the reasoning to your answer/choice of speakers. I would love to understand your answers and why "x" speaker is better than "y" speaker. Any/all information is useful to me and I would appreciate if you could pass your knowledge here onto me. I am trying my best to learn here, that is my main goal.

I will listen to these in person, I don't have time at the moment and it will stay that way for some time so I'm trying to educate myself about all these speakers. I know it's a lot of speakers but I just couldn't miss out on any of them (maybe a pair or two of Canton's). This is the choice that I came down to. If you have any questions for me, I'm here to answer them (also if you do it would be easier if you could number them or sort them by letters/ a,b,c,d etc.). I will give you further information if needed for a better answer and/or understanding.

tldr- I have some passive speakers that have been recommended and fit into my budget and some active/monitor speakers. Im trying to figure out how they differ and which one would suit my needs the best and which ones should I "throw out" of my consideration. I am trying to come down to an answer because I have mixed opinion, which is expected, however I'm trying to gain more opinions and make a conclusion on my choice.
 
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Reactions: Sonic Illusions
Many, if not all, of the speakers you mention tend toward the brighter crisper rather than warmer smoother side imo. Professional monitors also tend toward an up tilted balance. It makes them fatiguing for longer listening sessions but easier to hear small changes when mixing.
I don't know what brands are available to you but Spendor or ProAc speakers will tend to be warmer than the ones you list.
The Revel M16 might work best for you but I think they would be out of your price range since they sell for $900usd. Maybe a used pair?
Tweeter material isn't a sure indicator of how bright a speaker will sound since metal dome tweeters have been steadily improving.
You can change or at least ameliorate the sound of the speaker with your choice of electronics.
The decreasing number of bricks and mortar audio stores makes listening yourself difficult but it's the only way to know what you will like.
 

cirjakvoja

Estimable
Oct 27, 2015
61
2
4,585
0
Many, if not all, of the speakers you mention tend toward the brighter crisper rather than warmer smoother side imo. Professional monitors also tend toward an up tilted balance. It makes them fatiguing for longer listening sessions but easier to hear small changes when mixing.
I don't know what brands are available to you but Spendor or ProAc speakers will tend to be warmer than the ones you list.
The Revel M16 might work best for you but I think they would be out of your price range since they sell for $900usd. Maybe a used pair?
Tweeter material isn't a sure indicator of how bright a speaker will sound since metal dome tweeters have been steadily improving.
You can change or at least ameliorate the sound of the speaker with your choice of electronics.
The decreasing number of bricks and mortar audio stores makes listening yourself difficult but it's the only way to know what you will like.
Thank you for your opinion, it's nice to see that you are still active here :)
Hmm, well that sucks. I was hoping that at least the Jamos wouldn't be bright, listening for longer period is a very important thing to me. One thing that has me wondering is how can professionals make music for hours on monitors if they are fatiguing? I am looking forward into listening to them in person, but I'm not sure if that will test how fatiguing they are... I will listen to each speaker for less than an hour (probably 1/2 hour). Do all the speakers that I have mentioned above lean towards the brighter side, even the B&W? This hit me hard.. I was certain that at least one of the speakers would fit my taste.. I must say, this is very disappointing
I just checked and it seems like some ProAc and Spendor speakers are available to me, any specific models that you recommend? ProAc not really but I think Spendor are, if you have a specific Spendor model I can check if it's available
When searching for used speakers (some are nearly new) I found the following:
Spendor 2020- 590 usd, 520 eur
Avance Alpha 220i- 570 usd, 500 eur
Totem Mite- 570 usd, 500 eur
Bowers & Wilkins CDM1 SE- 305/340 usd, 270/300 eur
 
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The Jamos may well be the most acceptable of that group.
If you listen to a well recorded female vocal that will usually tell you quickly if the speaker has a peaky low treble range.
Don't know the Avance speakers.
The Totem Mites aren't bright but you may find them a bit bass shy. Other Totems may be bright since they tend to sound more different from model to model than other makers.
Those particular B&Ws will not work well for you. More expensive ones would be better but even some of those tend toward being peaky.
 

cirjakvoja

Estimable
Oct 27, 2015
61
2
4,585
0
The Jamos may well be the most acceptable of that group.
If you listen to a well recorded female vocal that will usually tell you quickly if the speaker has a peaky low treble range.
Don't know the Avance speakers.
The Totem Mites aren't bright but you may find them a bit bass shy. Other Totems may be bright since they tend to sound more different from model to model than other makers.
Those particular B&Ws will not work well for you. More expensive ones would be better but even some of those tend toward being peaky.
I have been going through some forums and I have found out more than a single person really enjoyed the Canton GLE 426, I will make sure to listen to all of them... the problem in that is picking an amplifier/receiver, the problem is that speakers sound different with different amplifiers so I dont know the best way to test them in a controlled environment, should I just pick one amplifier/receiver?
Do you have any recommendations for well recorded female vocals?
I found myself listening to The Weeknd vocals more than female vocals in general, and also The Queen. Ariana Grande is one female that I listened to, however I dont find myself listening to her anymore, and I dont find myself listening to older music from females... maybe Amy Winehouse and some others, but it's not as common as old and modern hip-hop and some pop. The main problem is that I am looking forward to using the speakers near-field so I need to find a speaker which is not fatiguing. The whole process is getting really frustating, however I'm not giving up, hopefuly I get some useful information from these forums.

Edit: i enjoy really old music from The Weeknd, mostly albums from his Trilogy. His Starboy album also features some nice vocals and songs that I have enjoyed.

Edit #2: I also forgot to mention that I have found a pair of Kef Q300 for 450 usd/400 euros (from a first owner, used speakers). Its a very good deal here since a single Q300 costs 350 euros.
Also I have a feeling that I'm misusing terms.. I have come to question what I'm even looking for in a speaker in terms of sound. Maybe bright speakers aren't bad to me... I guess I've never heard one, I have come to the conclusion that the only thing concerning me is fatigue. That's the thing I can say for certain I want to avoid, my goal is to be able to enjoy music for hours, I am not sure how clear, airy, mellow, warm I want the speakers to be.. that's what's probably having me the most frustrated. Also the bass.. do I want booming, smooth, soft bass.. I don't know. It think that I am not getting the answer because I myself am not even familiar with all these therms (there are definitions online however I can't say that I want that sound because I am not familiar with it... I am not familiar with sound signatures) Also mids are the thing that I'm the least familiar with... how can I tell when the highs, mids, lows are muddy?
So many questions... I really don't know what to do at this point because I have come to this realization.
Monitor speakers or bookshelf? Active or passive, where I need to fit the taste of the amplifier/receiver with my taste.

I think that you can get the sense of the frustration that I'm experiencing, you can clearly see that I have a dozen questions..
 
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This might help you with the terminology
https://www.audiophileon.com/news/how-to-describe-sound-an-audiophile-terminology-guide
Ultimately you should make up a playlist of the music you listen to (not mp3 files but at least CD quality) and burn it to a CD or a USB drive and visit as many dealers as you can. Some people keep notes so they can organize their reactions later. Make note of what electronics were used. You may hear the same speaker in more than one dealer and find them to sound different due to the electronics.
Yes it is hard to form you own opinions at first but using someone else's opinion can cost you a lot of money.
 
Feb 16, 2019
55
6
95
1
Hello dear tom's guide users... it's been a while since I used this forum and am more than happy to come back to this community! If you know the answer to the first part (1), second (2) or both, just put the number in front of your answer so they don't get mixed.. it would start looking messy and confusing fairly quickly. ~ I would appreciate if you could carefully read the whole text (if you have the time) and if you refer to a specific part to quote it so it's easier to follow. Thank you!

1. I have decided to continue my research for a pair of bookshelf speakers which sound warm and have good bass. Some information about myself and the use of speakers: I generally dislike harsh treble and bright speakers and am trying to avoid at all cost fatiguing speakers. I really enjoy bass and it's one of the most important elements in music for me. That being said I dont want a speaker which has overpowered/overdone bass and buddy mids, I just want to have a speaker which will deliver the nice (smooth) bass. I will use the speakers for listening to music (probably through my PC). I listen to hip-hop/rap the most however I really enjoy 80's and 90's music. I also really enjoy a good vocal in music, by that I mean like that of Freddie Mercury and The Weeknd (I enjoy these two guys the most, they give me chills). I plan to use them near/mid-field (more its more on the near-field side it's just that I want always be right in front of them, I might move a couple of meters away from them from time to time) and am planning to use them in a room that's around 20 square meters to 25 square meters (215 -269 squared feet). They will most likely be used on a DIY made stand mount, also I don't think that they will be very far from the wall (I am looking forward into using my computer while listening to music). I might get a subwoofer in the future but that option should not be counted on because if I do decide for a subwoofer it probably wont be the same purchase as with my speakers.. that's due to my budget.

I am looked to hear your recommendations on a pair of warm sounding speakers that will deliver good bass (that being said the mids should also be well done). I am aware that I am being very specific and picky and that it's near impossible to find a perfect speaker. I'm just trying my best to find one that will suit me under this price point. If you have any monitor speaker recommendations, I would also be interested (budget for an active monitor speaker would be 500-600 eur/ 567/680 usd)

2. If you have the information and knowledge I would appreciate if you could give me your opinion and comments about this part as well, I am posting it here because I don't think it's the best idea to start another thread.

Over 1-2 years of research I have come down to the following (which doesn't mean this is correct): The Monitor Audio Bronze 2 have been recommended to me the most. I was told to stay away from Kef Q300 and Dali Zensor 3 and Klipsch speakers. What is interesting is that when I asked a guy called Zero Fidelity, he recommended me the Dali Zensor 3's and... I will continue with this part in a second. I listened to the Monitor Audio Bronze 2's and was surely not impressed, I was convincing myself that there was something wrong with me... there has to be more to this speaker because everyone's talking about it. The bass was the thing that got be unsatisfied with the speaker... I don't know where the demo went wrong, maybe it was because of the amplifier/receiver (I dont remember which one it was). I will listen to them again, that being said I didn't give up on them.
I have looked what's available to me at this price point an have come down to many options: price ascending
Canton GLE 426 (314 usd, 279 eur)
Canton Chrono 502.2 (400 usd, 355 eur)
Canton Chrono 512 (457 usd, 406 eur)
MA Bronze 2 (388 usd, 345 eur)
Jamo C93 (366 usd, 326 eur)
B&W 686S2 (452 usd or 400 eur)
Focal Chorus 706 (506 usd a pair, 450 eur a pair)
B&W 607 (565 usd or 500 eur) a bit over my budget


I haven't heard a lot about the Canton's and Focal's although they look promising, if you have any opinion/experience please let me know anything about them. The difference between the three Canton's from my understanding is the following: GLE is the smallest and lightest of them, apparently it has the biggest woofer 6.3" (im not sure that this is correct, it says it on their site however the size in mm is the same as the other) and has a fabric 1" tweeter, unlike the 502.2 and 512 which feature an aluminum-manganese 1" tweeter. Now the difference between the 502.2 and the 512 is that 512 is heavier and a little bigger and features a titanium driver unlike the aluminium driver of the 502.2.

Jamo C93's have caught my attention the most, I am not quite sure why. I really like the look of them and they look very silky. On some other forums I have been told that generally speaking (unwritten rule) speakers with metal tweeters will have a brighter sound and tilted up treble. If I was to follow this "rule" then I should avoid MA Bronze 2's, all Cantons except the GLE 426's, Focal Chorus 706's and both B&W speakers. Now I am sure that this is not correct, also Zero Fidelity told me that this doesn't have to mean that. He also told me that "almost all speakers mentioned above" are tilted up and the only speakers he thinks fit my "taste" would be the Dali Zensor 3's and some Q Acoustic speakers, also he mentioned Polk Audio S10's which are not available to me just like the Elac's. This has got me confused and all over the place... why? Because on other forums people told me to stay away from Dali Zensor 3 because they would be bright for me.. just like Kef's, Klipsch's etc. I've heard that the B&W have some characteristics of Elacs such as rich bass and they were also recommended in this price range (i think that i've seen the 607's being recommended in this price range a couple of times)

I have also been recommended some monitor speakers such as the Adam A3x (512 usd/452 eur), Adam F7 (570 usd/500 eur)and some over the budget A7/A8x. Also the Focal Alpha 65's (612 usd/540 eur) have been recommended to me. I am open to monitor's because some have said that there are such monitor speakers which can both be used for music production and hifi listening. I am planning to possible make music in the future but that's not certain and therefore am looking for a hifi set of speakers. Also I am informed that most monitor speakers are meant to be neutral for production purposes unlike hifi speakers which have a signature.


~I would appreciate long and detailed answers very much. I would be more than happy if you could explain the reasoning to your answer/choice of speakers. I would love to understand your answers and why "x" speaker is better than "y" speaker. Any/all information is useful to me and I would appreciate if you could pass your knowledge here onto me. I am trying my best to learn here, that is my main goal.

I will listen to these in person, I don't have time at the moment and it will stay that way for some time so I'm trying to educate myself about all these speakers. I know it's a lot of speakers but I just couldn't miss out on any of them (maybe a pair or two of Canton's). This is the choice that I came down to. If you have any questions for me, I'm here to answer them (also if you do it would be easier if you could number them or sort them by letters/ a,b,c,d etc.). I will give you further information if needed for a better answer and/or understanding.

tldr- I have some passive speakers that have been recommended and fit into my budget and some active/monitor speakers. Im trying to figure out how they differ and which one would suit my needs the best and which ones should I "throw out" of my consideration. I am trying to come down to an answer because I have mixed opinion, which is expected, however I'm trying to gain more opinions and make a conclusion on my choice.
I understand your frustration. You truly appreciate good sound and like myself, have high standards. When I want something as close to perfect as dynamic speakers can be, I look no further than Bill Dudleston's Legacy Audio. I've been a fan since the early 90s. Call them and tell them what you want. But if you want the best, you have to pay for it, to some extent. Whether you choose to build your own, like I enjoy doing, or taking advantage of someone else's design and craftsmanship skills, you want the same end result: something that makes YOU happy. And if you're picky, rightly so, check to see if there's a dealer in your area. Sounds to me like only a demo will do. Do you want to order speakers, only to send them back? Any dealer who has Legacy's on display will also have other makes on display, most likely in a decent listening room. If I were you, I'd listen and choose. Most shops will let you return them if you want to try something else. Speakers can sound totally different once in their new home, versus a listening room. You've done so much research, give it a shot - it may pay off. When I build a no-compromise high-end set of speakers, the research can take months or longer! No rush.

Speakers are designed to have a 'flat' response in an anechoic chamber. If it's 'flat' that sounds bright to you, then you may just need to equalize. Whenever I integrate speakers into any listening environment (home, car, wherever), I always tune them flat to the acoustics of that environment with a test signal (pink noise),a spectrum analyzer and EQ. Then, once you get a flat response (no dips or peaks), you can tweak to your taste. Many better A/V receivers have this built in and include a calibration microphone, which is positioned at the listening area for test and tune.

This may interest you:
 
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hang-the-9

Titan
Moderator
I like Polk speakers for a smooth sound. The ones I heard (granted that was maybe 20 years ago) where smooth, even response and not too bright or bass heavy. A friend of the family also worked for Polk so I got some good info about different speaker designs from him as well as how they tweaked the sound. Using a tube amp or an amp that tries to emulate a tube, and a good quality equalizer can also help you with getting a good sound.

Since you are looking to spend decent money on the speakers, have you looked into any audio shops in your area? They are not as easy to find now as a few decades ago, but still should have some around. The one I used to go to in my area is still going, and last time I visited them was probably 25 years ago. Tweeter used to be great for audio also, I don't know how much they expanded before they closed but there were a few of those in New England.
 
Reactions: Sonic Illusions

cirjakvoja

Estimable
Oct 27, 2015
61
2
4,585
0
I understand your frustration. You truly appreciate good sound and like myself, have high standards. When I want something as close to perfect as dynamic speakers can be, I look no further than Bill Dudleston's Legacy Audio. I've been a fan since the early 90s. Call them and tell them what you want. But if you want the best, you have to pay for it, to some extent. Whether you choose to build your own, like I enjoy doing, or taking advantage of someone else's design and craftsmanship skills, you want the same end result: something that makes YOU happy. And if you're picky, rightly so, check to see if there's a dealer in your area. Sounds to me like only a demo will do. Do you want to order speakers, only to send them back? Any dealer who has Legacy's on display will also have other makes on display, most likely in a decent listening room. If I were you, I'd listen and choose. Most shops will let you return them if you want to try something else. Speakers can sound totally different once in their new home, versus a listening room. You've done so much research, give it a shot - it may pay off. When I build a no-compromise high-end set of speakers, the research can take months or longer! No rush.

Speakers are designed to have a 'flat' response in an anechoic chamber. If it's 'flat' that sounds bright to you, then you may just need to equalize. Whenever I integrate speakers into any listening environment (home, car, wherever), I always tune them flat to the acoustics of that environment with a test signal (pink noise),a spectrum analyzer and EQ. Then, once you get a flat response (no dips or peaks), you can tweak to your taste. Many better A/V receivers have this built in and include a calibration microphone, which is positioned at the listening area for test and tune.

This may interest you:
I've got 3 shops available.. however each shop has different brands, none of the 3 speakers have a single speaker in common, it' three different shops with different brands. So whereas in one shop that has a treated room for listening and has 3 brands available (of the speakers that I mentioned above), I would have to go to another shop to listen to let's sat the Focals, Dalis, Kefs.
DIY speakers are something that has me interested and I highly respect it. However for a kiddo like me who has absolutely zero experience with electricity and wood work, I don't know how good it would be to get myself into the DIY world. I would love to.. it's just that I don't even know how I'd create the speakers with drivers that would suit my taste.
I definitely plan on to listen to some of the speakers mentioned above.. however I probably won't be able to have a controlled receiver/amplifier.
p.s. I own the Yamaha RX-V383 A/V receiver, however some people on another forum (which is not friendly and people are just rude) told me that the receiver is "thin" for stereo speaker usage.. I'm assuming it means weak however I'm not sure if that's what they wanted to say. The funny thing is that I did extensive research and come down to that receiver, some people told me that I'd barely hear the difference between this A/V receiver and some stereo amplifier of the same price. Now I'm kind of confused and doubting that it's good.
Also I'm really lost because I'm looking for a set of speakers that won't be fatiguing when listening near-field. Most of these speakers are not meant for nearfield usage, however what I could do is place the speakers in front of me and instead of having my desk against the wall, I'd have it distanced from the wall (so my chair is facing away from the wall.. kinda a "waste" of space but) and even like this I dont think I'd get past 4-6 meters away from them, also this setup and placement would take up a lot of the room's space.
 
Reactions: Sonic Illusions

cirjakvoja

Estimable
Oct 27, 2015
61
2
4,585
0
I like Polk speakers for a smooth sound. The ones I heard (granted that was maybe 20 years ago) where smooth, even response and not too bright or bass heavy. A friend of the family also worked for Polk so I got some good info about different speaker designs from him as well as how they tweaked the sound. Using a tube amp or an amp that tries to emulate a tube, and a good quality equalizer can also help you with getting a good sound.

Since you are looking to spend decent money on the speakers, have you looked into any audio shops in your area? They are not as easy to find now as a few decades ago, but still should have some around. The one I used to go to in my area is still going, and last time I visited them was probably 25 years ago. Tweeter used to be great for audio also, I don't know how much they expanded before they closed but there were a few of those in New England.
I've just checked and found a pair of II-5JR for 100 euros which is far from audiophile. I also stumbled upon MA Gold 9's for around 300 eur
 

cirjakvoja

Estimable
Oct 27, 2015
61
2
4,585
0
I must say that Wharfedale is a brand that's talked about the internet as warm and smooth, and I've been thinking about their new 11 series for a while now. I must say that even the 11.2 (biggest bookshelf) speakers fall just 30 euros over my budget, making them 430 euros (485 usd).. probably the price can be decreased with some good communication skills ;)
Im not sure if they are available anywhere (close to me) to listen to.
It's a really interesting speaker and to me one of the prettiest looking speakers.
 
Feb 16, 2019
55
6
95
1
I like Polk speakers for a smooth sound. The ones I heard (granted that was maybe 20 years ago) where smooth, even response and not too bright or bass heavy. A friend of the family also worked for Polk so I got some good info about different speaker designs from him as well as how they tweaked the sound. Using a tube amp or an amp that tries to emulate a tube, and a good quality equalizer can also help you with getting a good sound.

Since you are looking to spend decent money on the speakers, have you looked into any audio shops in your area? They are not as easy to find now as a few decades ago, but still should have some around. The one I used to go to in my area is still going, and last time I visited them was probably 25 years ago. Tweeter used to be great for audio also, I don't know how much they expanded before they closed but there were a few of those in New England.
YES, I was also a big fan of Matt Polk! But PA just isn't the same any more....like 20 years ago.
 
Feb 16, 2019
55
6
95
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I've got 3 shops available.. however each shop has different brands, none of the 3 speakers have a single speaker in common, it' three different shops with different brands. So whereas in one shop that has a treated room for listening and has 3 brands available (of the speakers that I mentioned above), I would have to go to another shop to listen to let's sat the Focals, Dalis, Kefs.
DIY speakers are something that has me interested and I highly respect it. However for a kiddo like me who has absolutely zero experience with electricity and wood work, I don't know how good it would be to get myself into the DIY world. I would love to.. it's just that I don't even know how I'd create the speakers with drivers that would suit my taste.
I definitely plan on to listen to some of the speakers mentioned above.. however I probably won't be able to have a controlled receiver/amplifier.
p.s. I own the Yamaha RX-V383 A/V receiver, however some people on another forum (which is not friendly and people are just rude) told me that the receiver is "thin" for stereo speaker usage.. I'm assuming it means weak however I'm not sure if that's what they wanted to say. The funny thing is that I did extensive research and come down to that receiver, some people told me that I'd barely hear the difference between this A/V receiver and some stereo amplifier of the same price. Now I'm kind of confused and doubting that it's good.
Also I'm really lost because I'm looking for a set of speakers that won't be fatiguing when listening near-field. Most of these speakers are not meant for nearfield usage, however what I could do is place the speakers in front of me and instead of having my desk against the wall, I'd have it distanced from the wall (so my chair is facing away from the wall.. kinda a "waste" of space but) and even like this I dont think I'd get past 4-6 meters away from them, also this setup and placement would take up a lot of the room's space.
Sometimes, we must approach our goals in stages. Your Yamaha receiver will leave you wanting more. Their upper-end products incorporate more power (more headroom), reserve power, better damping, etc... It's the same with most brands (except those like Krell, Macintosh, etc... which are all no-compromise). I have an older Yamaha RX-V1. At the time it was released, it was Yamaha's flagship with great reviews. Although it doesn't have HDMI, it does have great amps. Also, great Burr-Brown DACs for that 'warm' sound. I recently completed the speakers (in my avatar). I wanted something simple that would play loud in my shop. After much frustration searching for suitable drivers, I found them. Everything looked perfect on paper and when I put them together, I was stunned (happy, thrilled!) with their sound. Not only did they deliver the decibels and the punch and imaging I wanted, they're far from fatiguing. The RX-V1 drives them with authority to almost 200W of clean power (4 ohms). While this may not be your goal, it's interesting how things work out. It sounds like what would make you happy would not only be a decent pair of speakers, but a good quality receiver with good DACs and nice amps. You may be able to find something used. I've stumbled upon GREAT deals from repair shops, who sell repaired items the customer either didn't pay for or maybe swapped out for something better. But when picking speakers, go for that 'goosebump' factor...when something knocks your socks off, you'll know it...lol. Stages...
 
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