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Better speakers than 8030c?

CarlToft

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Mar 22, 2020
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Hey, i am considering buying a pair of Genelec 8030C but i am wondering if there are any better speakers at that price point?
More info: My apartment is small and i will be sitting around 3 meters from the speakers.
 
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Have a look at Kali IN-5 or, if you have the space to place it, even Kali IN-8. Best value speakers in my opinion, though there is a dip in the higher frequencies and the casing has strong resonances. These both issues can be fixed with a foam layer beneath the speaker and a moderate EQ. Other than that, I never had such a good speaker for the money. But if you really want to go long term, spend the extra bucks and go Neumann/Genelec with a subwoofer.
 
KH80 Neumann. Less hiss and DSP built in.
This is not a no-brains alternative. It will very much depend on the use case. The speaker is a lot smaller, and will not play as loud, especially down low. So if not used near field, it will be a compromise.

You could also look second hand. It would make a larger model an option, like 8040B or KH120.
 
Have a look at Kali IN-5 or, if you have the space to place it, even Kali IN-8. Best value speakers in my opinion, though there is a dip in the higher frequencies and the casing has strong resonances. These both issues can be fixed with a foam layer beneath the speaker and a moderate EQ. Other than that, I never had such a good speaker for the money. But if you really want to go long term, spend the extra bucks and go Neumann/Genelec with a subwoofer.
My apartment is pretty small and i will be sitting around 3 meters from the speakers
 
That’s a lot for either of the above speakers
The Kalis are also notorious for their aggressive limiter in the lows. It is noticeable if your LP is not in the near field.
 
Even then, the direct to diffuse sound ratio (unless the room is well-treated) and bass handling may still be questionable. 8040s with sub(s) is a substantially pricier proposition. I would generally be aiming for at least some IN-8s or decent (passive) floorstanders. (My rule of thumb would be <1-1.5 m for 5.5", 1.5-2 m for 6.5" and 1.5-2.5 m for 8".)

The combination of "small apartment" and "3 m listening distance" is also setting off alarm bells regarding potential listening setup. A listening position with a wall pretty much directly behind you is seriously problematic.
 
There are also active floorstanding speakers available, although a bit pricier than the 8030, for example:

KEF LS60
Dynaudio focus 30
System audio legend 60.2 silverback
 
8040s with sub(s) is a substantially pricier proposition.
Depending on your room, music taste and setup, you could probably get away without a sub. I ran 8040s in my room and at 2.5m, they did very well. With sub is better though. You can always add one later.
 
In Amir’s measurements of the 8030c I believe they could play 105db before much limiting. I think they’d be excellent for casual listening even at 3m. It’ll be hard to best them for $1400/pair. They were even finalists for Stereophile’s 2022 component of the year honours (in G3 form). Pretty sure Stereophile didn’t listen to them nearfield.
 
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