• WANTED: Happy members who like to discuss audio and other topics related to our interest. Desire to learn and share knowledge of science required as is 20 years of participation in forums (not all true). Come here to have fun, be ready to be teased and not take online life too seriously. We now measure and review equipment for free! Click here for details.

Seeking recommendations: Best active speakers for $10k/pair? (Would also be offered for measurement.)

hyperplanar

Active Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2020
Messages
130
Likes
198
Location
Los Angeles
I don’t have BNC balanced coax digital output from anything. I do have a Topping D10 and suppose I can use its optical or RCA SPDIF along with this converter to get it to AES format:

https://www.sweetwater.com/store/cart.php?action=additem

Total price still around $200 though, but still the best option I can find so far (especially since I already have the D10).
The S/PDIF and AES3 formats are almost the same. Most AES3 inputs will accept a S/PDIF format without any problem.

All you need to get the digital output from the D10 to the monitors are a coaxial RCA cable, RCA to BNC adapter, the impedance converter linked above, and AES3 XLR cables. These are all passive devices.

To elaborate: there’s unbalanced AES3 using coaxial cables and BNC connectors at the ends. This is basically like regular coaxial RCA S/PDIF with the same 75 ohm impedance, but with higher signal voltage. You can safely connect S/PDIF sources to a BNC input using a simple adapter, but the other way around needs a level matching adapter to bring the voltage down to S/PDIF standard.

Then there’s balanced AES3 which uses XLR connectors. This is 110 ohms and the standard voltage is even higher.

S/PDIF, AES3 BNC and AES3 XLR are all largely compatible with each other, you just need to have the appropriate adapters for what you’re trying to do.
 
Last edited:
OP
E

echopraxia

Active Member
Forum Donor
Joined
Oct 25, 2019
Messages
215
Likes
275
Location
Seattle, WA
Thread Starter #262
The S/PDIF and AES3 formats are almost the same. Most AES3 inputs will accept a S/PDIF format without any problem.

All you need to get the digital output from the D10 to the monitors are a coaxial RCA cable, RCA to BNC adapter, the impedance converter linked above, and AES3 XLR cables. These are all passive devices.
Yes, but the impedance converter you linked alone costs almost as much as the RCA to AES converter I linked (fixed broken link btw) anyway, so I’m not sure what benefit there would be to the extra steps. I guess it would be nice not needind an extra power cable, or what additional jitter an active converter may introduce.
 

hyperplanar

Active Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2020
Messages
130
Likes
198
Location
Los Angeles
Yes, but the impedance converter you linked alone costs almost as much as the RCA to AES converter I linked (fixed broken link btw) anyway, so I’m not sure what benefit there would be to the extra steps. I guess it would be nice not needind an extra power cable, or what additional jitter an active converter may introduce.
It’s 45 bucks here: https://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/Neutrik/NADITBNC-M?qs=MO8z%2B%2BLepAGrh4gmXwrlDg==&gclid=Cj0KCQjwzZj2BRDVARIsABs3l9IHqktgApyKBV8HgkntZla1tSUhA6U3YEcvay44_URSmgF9XjHoKQ0aAmW0EALw_wcB

I know it sounds complicated, but really your setup would just be D10 -> RCA to BNC cable -> this adapter -> XLR cable -> 8351. No point in adding in an active converter unless necessary :)
 
Last edited:

richard12511

Senior Member
Forum Donor
Joined
Jan 23, 2020
Messages
381
Likes
338
BTW, does anyone know a good and relatively inexpensive way to get digital audio out of a PC and into the AES3 aka AES/EBU format these use to accept digital audio inputs via XLR cables? I can’t seem to find a good solution here. I want to ideally use digital inputs, so I’m not wasting my nice DAC only to be redigitized via ADC inside the speaker anyway.
Is there a reason other than sound quality that you don't want to waste your DAC? Sound quality shouldn't change either way, but if you need it for some other reason, you might be able to find something for a ~ hundred $.
 

hege

Member
Forum Donor
Joined
Dec 25, 2018
Messages
39
Likes
37
Location
Finland
There's no need for impedance adapter for short cable lengths <2m or so, Genelecs accept direct S/PDIF signal just fine. Just use decent quality RCA-XLR cable or RCA-RCA + $10 XLR-adapter. A terrible cost problem solved. :facepalm:

PS. For impedance adapters, Canare BCJ-XP-TRC is more slimmer than Neutrik. Egg models should take in the Neutrik one directly (there's no need for an extra XLR-XLR cable). But models like 1032C do not have enough space, only Canare will fit directly. It's also cheaper.
 
Last edited:

LTig

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Feb 27, 2019
Messages
1,727
Likes
2,428
Location
Europe
The S/PDIF and AES3 formats are almost the same. Most AES3 inputs will accept a S/PDIF format without any problem.

All you need to get the digital output from the D10 to the monitors are a coaxial RCA cable, RCA to BNC adapter, the impedance converter linked above, and AES3 XLR cables. These are all passive devices.
If the OP needs to cover a short distance only it's probably worth to try just a cable RCA -> XLR. It might work if the input has enough sensitivity, the impedance mismatch should not matter that much.

EDIT: @hege just beat me.:)
 

hyperplanar

Active Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2020
Messages
130
Likes
198
Location
Los Angeles
There's no need for impedance adapter for short cable lengths <2m or so, Genelecs accept direct S/PDIF signal just fine. Just use decent quality RCA-XLR cable or RCA-RCA + $10 XLR-adapter. A terrible cost problem solved. :facepalm:

PS. For impedance adapters, Canare BCJ-XP-TRC is more slimmer than Neutrik. Egg models should take in the Neutrik one directly (there's no need for an extra XLR-XLR cable). But models like 1032C do not have enough space, only Canare will fit directly. It's also cheaper.
True. I didn’t want to assume the cable lengths but this should work!
 
OP
E

echopraxia

Active Member
Forum Donor
Joined
Oct 25, 2019
Messages
215
Likes
275
Location
Seattle, WA
Thread Starter #270
There's no need for impedance adapter for short cable lengths <2m or so, Genelecs accept direct S/PDIF signal just fine. Just use decent quality RCA-XLR cable or RCA-RCA + $10 XLR-adapter. A terrible cost problem solved. :facepalm:

PS. For impedance adapters, Canare BCJ-XP-TRC is more slimmer than Neutrik. Egg models should take in the Neutrik one directly (there's no need for an extra XLR-XLR cable). But models like 1032C do not have enough space, only Canare will fit directly. It's also cheaper.
Thanks, that's perfect! I wish it was easier for a beginner to these formats to realize that this is all it takes. My initial research implied that you even need special AES/EBU XLR cables here due to impedance differences vs analog XLR cables. I suppose it might make sense that this is the only 'safe' option across different speakers and cable lengths.

It would have been nice if the Genelec manual added a small section describing what you did -- that for near-field PC stereo setups, all you really need is a vanilla digital RCA->XLR adapter cable, which is really simple if you already have digital RCA out (unless it does and I missed it).
 
Joined
Dec 3, 2019
Messages
55
Likes
31
Great, that a really inexpensive solution seems to be found. However, I do not think Genelec will ever mention this option in their documentation, as it might or might not work - but certainly would create unnecessary service tickets, in case it does not work (properly).

Since "jitter" has been mentioned: I would not be concerned about it too much in such a signal path, since any good final DAC stage would re-clock the signal and thus decrease the amount of timing anomalies drastically; at least to a non-audible level. [RME calls this feature 'SteadyClock FS', in their recent product range.] Here, some further information on jitter audibility can be found.

Another comment on the Genelec forum mentions, that an impedance mismatch [75 Ω vs. 110 Ω] would cause additional jitter in the signal path - again, most probably not going to be an issue for Genelec's built-in DAC. // An 'AES/EBU Low-cost DAC Performance Evaluation' has been made with success; but would the AES3-standard not ask for additional modification of the output level [in V]?
 
Last edited:
OP
E

echopraxia

Active Member
Forum Donor
Joined
Oct 25, 2019
Messages
215
Likes
275
Location
Seattle, WA
Thread Starter #273
Whereas on the other hand, we have the snake oil audiophile approach to these:
https://darko.audio/2018/02/genelecs-the-ones-8341-think-inside-the-box/

Only AES/EBU digital and analogue XLR-terminated wire need apply. I go with the latter. Cutting over from AudioQuest’s Yukon to a longer run of AudioQuest’s Wind saw me (err) catch first wind of this loudspeaker’s ability to resolve upstream changes and in spite of the Genelec’s auto-digitising inputs that aren’t the obfuscators of transparency that many erroneously believe.

[...]

Not much bigger than a hardback book, Mytek’s Brooklyn/+ (US$2000/US$2200) hits our active speaker hook-up requirements head on – a D/A converter with balanced outputs and internal volume control – and then exceeds them with a choice of analogue or digital volume control, slimline Apple remote hi-jack and MQA compatibility. The inclusion of a powerful headphone output (with option for balanced operations) and a very decent MM/MC phono input (whose settings are fixed), all for a shade over US$2000, make this Mytek piece one of the most feature-packed bargains in all of modern hifi.

[...]

Playing directly into the Genelec’s, both the PS Audio and the Chord show off why they are considered two of the best DAC/pre-amplifiers choices below US$15K.
I am at a loss for words at how ... logically challenged... this author must be to consciously opt for the analog inputs to these speakers, and acknowledge that they’ll just be converted back to digital internally, only to then write on about how a $15k DAC fed into the analog inputs improves the sound.

Anyway, the reason I’m visiting this page is because I like the look of these stands:

1590195823786.png


Does anyone know what stands these are? Or any other suggestions for nice looking stands that go well with these speakers? My existing stands have a fairly large flat platform larger than the speakers. Although it works, it looks kind of ugly against the sculpted curves of these speakers.
 
Last edited:

hyperplanar

Active Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2020
Messages
130
Likes
198
Location
Los Angeles
would the AES3-standard not ask for additional modification of the output level [in V]?
IIRC the minimum voltage specified for S/PDIF, AES3 BNC, and AES3 XLR are all 0.2 V. So although the standard voltage for AES3 is higher, it can accept the 0.5 V signal no problem.

Edit: Close enough:
1590200961338.png
 
Last edited:

hyperplanar

Active Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2020
Messages
130
Likes
198
Location
Los Angeles
any other suggestions for nice looking stands that go well with these speakers? My existing stands have a fairly large flat platform larger than the speakers. Although it works, it looks kind of ugly against the sculpted curves of these speakers.
I would go with the Genelec stands or some nice K&M ones where you can bolt the speakers in. This way you can avoid diffractions coming from the base of a regular stand.
 
Last edited:

Hugo9000

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 21, 2018
Messages
426
Likes
1,094
Location
U.S.A.
Whereas on the other hand, we have the snake oil audiophile approach to these:
https://darko.audio/2018/02/genelecs-the-ones-8341-think-inside-the-box/



I am at a loss for words at how ... logically challenged... this author must be to consciously opt for the analog inputs to these speakers, and acknowledge that they’ll just be converted back to digital internally, only to then write on about how a $15k DAC fed into the analog inputs improves the sound.

Anyway, the reason I’m visiting this page is because I like the look of these stands:

View attachment 64870

Does anyone know what stands these are? Or any other suggestions for nice looking stands that go well with these speakers? My existing stands have a fairly large flat platform larger than the speakers. Although it works, it looks kind of ugly against the sculpted curves of these speakers.
I agree that the Genelecs look nice on those floor stands. From his article:

Before removing the tiltable feet and screw-mounting the 8341 to a pair of the (German-made) G-One stands...
However, I don't see them in the Genelec accessories catalogue (you can download it here: https://www.genelec.com/accessories )

They have the table stands and various brackets, etc.

Perhaps the "G-One" stand was never commercially available? Or only very briefly and already discontinued? Probably best to contact Genelec directly and ask them about it. Here is a pic Darko included that shows where the speaker rear mounts to the stand:

genelec-8341_2.png


This is the tabletop stand from Genelec's catalogue:

Genelec The Ones table stand.jpg
 

aac

New Member
Joined
May 17, 2020
Messages
4
Likes
2
Whereas on the other hand, we have the snake oil audiophile approach to these:
https://darko.audio/2018/02/genelecs-the-ones-8341-think-inside-the-box/



I am at a loss for words at how ... logically challenged... this author must be to consciously opt for the analog inputs to these speakers, and acknowledge that they’ll just be converted back to digital internally, only to then write on about how a $15k DAC fed into the analog inputs improves the sound.

Anyway, the reason I’m visiting this page is because I like the look of these stands:

View attachment 64870

Does anyone know what stands these are? Or any other suggestions for nice looking stands that go well with these speakers? My existing stands have a fairly large flat platform larger than the speakers. Although it works, it looks kind of ugly against the sculpted curves of these speakers.
Konig and Meyer makes nice stands (quite expensive though).
They have a series called "design monitor stand", I think they will fit those speakers well, they even have a wire duct inside a stand, so no wires will be visible. But be aware of their height, they have a few available.
In fact https://www.genelec.com/accessories/8000-400-genelec-design-stand this stand appears to be a konig and meyer stand, https://www.k-m.de/en/products/spea...s/26785-design-monitor-stand-structured-black
I don't see a point looking further than this one, if the height is adequate.

BTW, does anyone know a good and relatively inexpensive way to get digital audio out of a PC and into the AES3 aka AES/EBU format these use to accept digital audio inputs via XLR cables? I can’t seem to find a good solution here. I want to ideally use digital inputs, so I’m not wasting my nice DAC only to be redigitized via ADC inside the speaker anyway.
Check out ebay for some used audioscience or digigram card for your PC. Marian too, but they are less linux compatible (if you need it).
As other people mentioned there is also an option of using converter. If your PC does not have an SPDIF output - check your motherboard, it can have two pins that are not connected to anything and labeled spdif, so you might try that if you have a converter.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Aug 16, 2019
Messages
35
Likes
29
I just purchased some K&M 26740 Monitor stands for my Genelec 8030's, and their height adjustment range is from 950 to 1,430 mm. Even at their lowest position they were ridiculously high. I'm returning them.

The K&M 26785 Design monitor stand mentioned above has a height adjustment range from 1,100 to 1,700 mm!

https://www.k-m.de/en/products/spea...5-design-monitor-stand-structured-black?c=195

It's hard to find info on these stands on the internet but I found some photos that depict them with Genelec 8050's.

wyuvu96xr1mmvuuteyt3.jpg

zrl5yev4vpekfnfhtmkv.jpg


The lowest the rear mounting assembly on the stand can go is 1100mm. Probably positionally coincidental with a coaxial driver on the front of the speaker if your 8351's were mounted. Even at their lowest position these seem to be very high.

A better solution may be the K&M 26791 Design monitor stand, usable range from 644 to 1044 mm using the Genelec Z8050-408 bearing plate.

https://www.k-m.de/en/products/spea...1-design-monitor-stand-structured-black?c=195

https://www.thomann.de/gb/genelec_z8050_408.htm
 
Last edited:
OP
E

echopraxia

Active Member
Forum Donor
Joined
Oct 25, 2019
Messages
215
Likes
275
Location
Seattle, WA
Thread Starter #279
I just purchased some K&M 26740 Monitor stands for my Genelec 8030's, and their height adjustment range is from 950 to 1,430 mm. Even at their lowest position they were ridiculously high. I'm returning them.

The K&M 26785 Design monitor stand mentioned above has a height adjustment range is from 1,100 to 1,700 mm!

https://www.k-m.de/en/products/spea...5-design-monitor-stand-structured-black?c=195

It's hard to find info on these stands on the internet but I found some photos that depict them with Genelec 8050's.

View attachment 64978
View attachment 64979

The lowest the rear mounting assembly on the stand can go is 1100mm. Probably positionally coincidental with a coaxial driver on the front of the speaker if your 8351's were mounted. Even at their lowest position these seem to be very high.

A better solution may be the K&M 26791 Design monitor stand, usable range from 644 to 1044 mm using the Genelec Z8050-408 bearing plate.

https://www.k-m.de/en/products/spea...1-design-monitor-stand-structured-black?c=195

https://www.thomann.de/gb/genelec_z8050_408.htm
Wow yes I think that K&M design stand with a Genelec plate looks like it would be perfect!

I was looking at the Genelec specific version of that stand, but like the poster above mentioned, I worry that it lowest setting might be just on the verge of being too high for me. The height range of 1.1m to 1.7m is a very bizarre choice, since the start of that range is just a bit too tall for many seating positions, yet the end of that range is still just a bit too short for many adults. So it seems poorly sized for sitting or standing.

The height range of that K&M 26791 looks just right! Thank you for finding that — I think that plus a Genelec plate is what I will go with! Edit: The K&M 26795 also seems to have a good height range also, but probably goes higher than I would need.

While it would be cool if it were possible to get that Z shaped Genelec floor stand, I think even if I could, it’s ultimately less practical for ideal placement than a stand with adjustable height anyway.
 
Last edited:

Sancus

Addicted to Fun and Learning
Forum Donor
Joined
Nov 30, 2018
Messages
585
Likes
1,172
FYI you can pretty much build your own K&M flat-base speaker stand by using various base plates and then distance rods that can be screwed into that plate. Since the plate has several different screw holes, and the rods are available in many many sizes, it's pretty flexible. I like this system because you can screw the rod into the corner/side of the base plate and then stick something on top of the stand, an end table, a plant, possibly even a (small) subwoofer. It can be beneficial, aesthetically. The base plate is not small, though.



(That's a Neumann KH80, and yes - it's intentionally above ear height as a surround and yes I DO need to switch to the white version for matching, lol)
 
Top Bottom