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Neumann KH80, Genelec 8020D or Genelec G2?

asr_hifi

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Hi all!

Please help me decide how I should upgrade my sound system.

First, let me introduce my listening environment, see attachment 1.

  • My room is only 7 square meters (3.5m x 2.2m), and I am going to place the speaker on my desk (140cm x 90cm).
  • I built my PC (27cm width) with RGB and it looks cool, so I wanted to put it on the desk as much as possible.
  • My sound card is the sound card of the motherboard ROG R6EO with the optical and 3.5mm output.

Currently, I am using Edifier Airpulse A80 with PreSonus ERIS Sub8, and I want to upgrade my listening system for a better experience. After reading the reviews and comments on ASR, I want to choose between Neumann KH80, Genelec 8020D and Genelec G2. But I still have a lot of confusion and ask for your help.
  1. Can this upgrade effectively improve the listening experience? Because I know my environment is not ideal i.e., small room and crowded desk.
  2. I like to listen to pop music and also play games, which monitor would be a better choice.
  3. I don't have a DAC at the moment, is this necessary for these monitors?
  4. Do I need to use a subwoofer with these monitors?
  5. Is it a wise choice to choose F1B with G2? I noticed that the F1B can be connected to the digital output of my motherboard, maybe this can replace the DAC?

Thanks in advance!
 

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HarmonicTHD

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Hi all!

Please help me decide how I should upgrade my sound system.

First, let me introduce my listening environment, see attachment 1.
- My room is only 7 square meters (3.5m x 2.2m), and I am going to place the speaker on my desk (140cm x 90cm).
- I built my PC (27cm width) with RGB and it looks cool, so I wanted to put it on the desk as much as possible.
- My sound card is the sound card of the motherboard ROG R6EO with the optical and 3.5mm output.

Currently I am using Edifier A80 with ERIS SUB8, and I want to upgrade this listening system for a better experience. After reading the reviews and comments on ASR, I want to choose between Neumann KH80, Genelec 8020D and Genelec G2. But I still have a lot of confusion and ask for your help.
1. Can this upgrade effectively improve the listening experience? Because I know my environment is not ideal i.e., small room and crowded desk.
2. I like to listen to pop music and also play games, which monitor would be a better choice.
3. I don't have a DAC at the moment, is this necessary for these monitors?
4. Do I need to use a subwoofer with these monitors?
5. Is it a wise choice to choose F1B with G2? I noticed that the F1B can use an optical input, maybe this can replace the DAC?

Thanks in advanc!
Sound wise - flip a coin btw the KH80 and the 8020 at least close and most likely down to individual preference. The KH80 have built in DSP which allows for room correction (MA1). The KH80 are the somewhat newer design. The KH80 exhibit less hiss when idle and when being very close (less 1m), however as you might be sitting further away this might not be a criteria for you.

Plus there is a thread like this every other day here, where you can get further insights or not as these threads tend to go off often about people bickering about their individual preferences.

In the end for you to make the decision it is best to order both and return the one you preferred less. Just don’t abuse any return policy because we would all suffer eventually.

 
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asr_hifi

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Sound wise - flip a coin btw the KH80 and the 8020. The KH80 have built in DSP which allows for room correction (MA1). The KH80 are the somewhat newer design. The KH80 exhibit less hiss when idle and when being very close (less 1m), however as you might be sitting further away this might not be a criteria for you.

Plus there is a thread like this every other day here, where you can get further insights or not as these threads tend to go off often about people bickering about their individual preferences.

In the end for you to make the decision it is best to order both and return the one you preferred less. Just don’t abuse any return policy because we would all suffer eventually.

Thanks for your comment!
- I have an iPad, so using the iPAD for DSP is feasible for me.
- Besides, I wish the monitors had less hissing. I once tried to use my motherboard's sound card (3.5mm -> XLR) for Tannoy Gold 5, and then I heard an unbearable hissing. This is why I did not consider Tannoy Gold 5 or iLoud this time.
- When I try to use the Macbook's 3.5mm output for Tannoy Gold 5, the hissing becomes very slight. So is using a DAC necessary for less hiss? Because it can be used instead of using the 3.5mm output from my motherboard.
 
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bodhi

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Your current setup is seems to be pretty reasonable already. I'm certain that upgrading to any those monitors will not improve your experience that much, without a sub it will get worse.

From Genelec side I think the minimum upgrade that would meaningfully improve your listening experience would be 8230 with 7350 and GLM package. Those you can connect to the digital out of your motherboard.
 

HarmonicTHD

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Thanks for your comment!
- I have an iPad, so using the iPAD for DSP is feasible for me.
- Besides, I wish the monitors had less hissing. I once tried to use my motherboard's sound card (3.5mm -> XLR) for Tannoy Gold 5, and then I heard an unbearable hissing. This is why I did not consider Tannoy Gold 5 or iloud this time.
- However, when I try to use the Macbook's 3.5mm output for Tannoy Gold 5, the hissing becomes very slight. So whether a DAC will become necessary because of the hissing.
I am not sure an iPad does the kind of room correction for which you need a parametric EQ. The Mac does for sure. There is a big thread here for software EQ and filter calculation (REW).


You would need an UMIK1 (100USD) to measure.
 
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asr_hifi

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Your current setup is seems to be pretty reasonable already. I'm certain that upgrading to any those monitors will not improve your experience that much, without a sub it will get worse.

From Genelec side I think the minimum upgrade that would meaningfully improve your listening experience would be 8230 with 7350 and GLM package. Those you can connect to the digital out of your motherboard.
Thanks for your comment! How about using Genelec G2 with Genelec F1b? I noted that the F1b with DAC can also be connected to the digital output of my motherboard.
 

bodhi

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Thanks for your comment! How about using Genelec G2 with Genelec F1b? I noted that the F1b with DAC can also be connected to the digital output of my motherboard.

F1b is way worse than 7350, not sure if I would call it a sub. And it costs almost as much. You can connect 7350 to G2 but you'd need GLM kit to configure it.

The thing here is that you current 2.1 system is quite good relatively speaking. To get big improvement you have to eat the diminishing returns and spend a bit more.

Both the G2 and F1b would be considerably worse options long term and the latter might be actually worse sub than what you have now.

Then again, 8330 + 7350 + GLM is end game class setup for nearfield desktop use. You might never feel the need to upgrade from it.

So, if at all possible, don't spend what you have available right now, save a bit more and get the endgame setup.

Last thing: as the G2 and F1b are clearly sub-par equipment their value used is considerably less than their updated versions.
 

HarmonicTHD

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Thanks for your comment!
- I have an iPad, so using the iPAD for DSP is feasible for me.
- Besides, I wish the monitors had less hissing. I once tried to use my motherboard's sound card (3.5mm -> XLR) for Tannoy Gold 5, and then I heard an unbearable hissing. This is why I did not consider Tannoy Gold 5 or iLoud this time.
- When I try to use the Macbook's 3.5mm output for Tannoy Gold 5, the hissing becomes very slight. So is using a DAC necessary for less hiss? Because it can be used instead of using the 3.5mm output from my motherboard.
Sorry I missed the second part of your question. Yes you would either need a DAC to connect to the Mac or as you already discovered the F1b. The bigger and lower reaching alternative from Neumann is the KH750 as it also take digital in. However I think the KH750 might be overpowering in your room.

And having had another look at your system, I tend to agree with @bodhi. It is indeed very reasonable and really make sure that any upgrade you make is really worth the bang for the buck you spent. You might just keep your system as is and upgrade when you ever move to a bigger room.
 
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asr_hifi

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F1b is way worse than 7350, not sure if I would call it a sub. And it costs almost as much. You can connect 7350 to G2 but you'd need GLM kit to configure it.

The thing here is that you current 2.1 system is quite good relatively speaking. To get big improvement you have to eat the diminishing returns and spend a bit more.

Both the G2 and F1b would be considerably worse options long term and the latter might be actually worse sub than what you have now.

Then again, 8330 + 7350 + GLM is end game class setup for nearfield desktop use. You might never feel the need to upgrade from it.

So, if at all possible, don't spend what you have available right now, save a bit more and get the endgame setup.

Last thing: as the G2 and F1b are clearly sub-par equipment their value used is considerably less than their updated versions.
Thank you for your constructive suggestion! I still have some confusion. I want to know is there any difference between the Genelec G series and the 80 series except for the interface? Besides, should I consider 8030 or KH120? The inner distance between the two monitors is about 70 cm, and the distance from the speaker to my ear is about 90 cm.
 
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asr_hifi

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Sorry I missed the second part of your question. Yes you would either need a DAC to connect to the Mac or as you already discovered the F1b. The bigger and lower reaching alternative from Neumann is the KH750 as it also take digital in. However I think the KH750 might be overpowering in your room.

And having had another look at your system, I tend to agree with @bodhi. It is indeed very reasonable and really make sure that any upgrade you make is really worth the bang for the buck you spent. You might just keep your system as is and upgrade when you ever move to a bigger room.
Thank you for your constructive suggestion! The inner distance between the two monitors is about 70 cm, and the distance from the monitor to my ear is about 90 cm. Should I consider 8030 or KH120?
 

HarmonicTHD

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Thank you for your constructive suggestion! The inner distance between the two monitors is about 70 cm, and the distance from the monitor to my ear is about 90 cm. Should I consider 8030 or KH120?
Sorry never tested the KH120 (only the KH80, 8030 and 8020)
 

bodhi

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Thank you for your constructive suggestion! I still have some confusion. I want to know is there any difference between the Genelec G series and the 80 series except for the interface? Besides, should I consider 8030 or KH120? The inner distance between the two monitors is about 70 cm, and the distance from the speaker to my ear is about 90 cm.

G series has input sensing power off, one extra option for bass reduction, the led is white (from the top of my head). Nothing that meaningful. I still wouldn't recommend either when the 8330 is just 20% more.

Sound quality wise I think the both the Neumann and Genelec are very good, In blind test it would be difficult for most people to decide which is better. And I'm a Genelec fan.
 
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