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Speaker upgrade - options and suggestions

stango

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Nov 30, 2023
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Hello everyone!

Long time channel follower, but this is my first post, because I have to say that I cannot decide what sort of speaker upgrade I should have, so I would like some input :)
What makes it difficult is the fact that there are many speakers available in a lower, discounted price (I live in The Netherlands).

My current setup is:
  • Streamer/CD Player: Marantz ND8006
  • Turntable: Pro-Ject X1
  • Amplifier: Yamaha A-S2200
  • Speakers: Yamaha NS-555
  • Subwoofer: Klipsch R-10SW

Two years ago I started upgrading my system starting from the turntable, then streamer, and then the amp. I had a hard time convincing my wife to change the speakers, since they were a wedding present from her sister, but she's now onboard! :D

My max budget is 3,000EUR, perhaps 3,500EUR if I find a superb bargain for an otherwise (way) more expensive speaker. I also have to say that I use my system mostly for music (like 85% - 15%) and that my music preferences are Rock/Metal, Jazz and sometimes classical (mostly piano) pieces. So, the speakers I'm considering are the following (too many options, I know :p).
  1. KEF R11 (Non-Meta): I can find a bargain at 2,700EUR
  2. KEF R7 (Non-Meta): Also discounted at 1,950EUR
  3. Polk Audio R700: Discounted (a bit) at 2,400EUR
  4. DALI Rubicon 6: Discounted at 2,900EUR
  5. Klipsch RP-8060FA II: B Stock at 2,200EUR
  6. Klipsch RP-8000F II: Last pair for 1,450EUR, otherwise at 1,700EUR
  7. SVS Prime Pinnacle: 2,100EUR
  8. Elac Vela BS404: Demo pair for 3,500EUR
  9. Bowers & Wilkins 702 Signature: Demo pair for 3,500EUR
  10. Elac Adante AF-61: Discounted at 2,700EUR
I'm leaning towards the options #1, #2, #4 and #10, but would appreciate any possible input on the rest and whether they might - or might not - be a good pair with the Yamaha. I read for example that option #2 (Polk Audio R700) is quite demanding in terms of power, so I'm not sure if the 100W of the A-S2200 are enough. Options #5, #6 and #7 are there because of the many good reviews they received, plus I don't know if paying more to get one of the others would constitute a major upgrade in sound.

Thanks in advance for the responses! Looking forward!

Stan
 

nerdemoji

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Minidsp Flex (if it fits somewhere) + R3 Meta Sealed + maybe sub upgrade if you want

or ls50 meta + sub upgrade
 

sweetchaos

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3500 eur = approx 3800 usd

Bookshelves < US$4,000/pair:
NamePSPSwSubLFX
March Audio Sointuva AWG7.38.832
Ascend Acoustics Sierra-LX6.88.638
Kef R3 (Amir) (Erin) [Discontinued on Feb 2023, replaced by R3 Meta]6.68.337
Ascend Acoustics Sierra 1 V2 (Erin)6.48.442
Kef R3 Meta (Erin)6.38.036
Philharmonic BMR v2 (Erin)6.17.733
Ascend Acoustics Sierra-2EX V25.98.04.3
Philharmonic Ceramic Mini (Erin)5.97.942
Revel M16 with sealed port [readme] (Amir)5.9????
Elac Debut Reference DBR-62 (Amir)(Erin)5.77.843
Revel M105 (Amir)5.98.351
Revel M106 (Amir)5.88.046
JBL HDI-1600 (Amir)5.87.638
Kef LS50 Meta (Amir)5.77.843
Revel M16 with open port (Amir)5.67.745
Arendal Sound 1723 Monitor S THX (Erin)5.17.142
Polk Audio Signature Elite ES20 (Amir)4.86.739
Arendal Sound 1723 Bookshelf S THX (Erin)4.87.662
Arendal Sound 1723 Monitor THX (Erin) (Amir)4.87.045
Arendal Sound 1961 Bookshelf (Erin)4.47.368

Towers < US$3,900/pair:
NamePSPSwSubLFX
Revel F2066.4*8.1*36*
Ascend Acoustics Sierra Titan6.28.141
Wharfedale Linton 85th Anniversary (Erin)6.07.836
Kef R5 (Erin) [Discontinued on Feb 2023, replaced by R5 Meta]5.97.533
Revel F35 (Amir)5.77.639
Arendal Sound 1961 Tower (Erin)5.17.551
JBL 4309 (Amir)3.75.741
Kef R7 [Discontinued Feb 2023, replaced by R7 Meta]******
Revel F36******
Philharmonic BMR Tower (AH)******

-from my thread
 
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BossBunos

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Hi fellow Dutchman :)

Do you want them to be new or are you OK with used?
Do you want towers or are bookshelves + sub an option?

For new towers (what it seems you are looking for) I would at least add a revel option to the list. F36 can be bought new for 2400 a pair. Or maybe a pair of f206 on discount somewhere.
 
OP
S

stango

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Minidsp Flex (if it fits somewhere) + R3 Meta Sealed + maybe sub upgrade if you want

or ls50 meta + sub upgrade
I was never a fan of bookshelf speakers unfortunately. Regarding the MiniDSP Flex, I already stream Qobuz to my Marantz, so I don't think it's something I would add to the existing setup ;)
 
OP
S

stango

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3500 eur = approx 3800 usd

Bookshelves < US$4,000/pair:
NamePSPSwSubLFX
March Audio Sointuva AWG7.38.832
Ascend Acoustics Sierra-LX6.88.638
Kef R3 (Amir) (Erin) [Discontinued on Feb 2023, replaced by R3 Meta]6.68.337
Ascend Acoustics Sierra 1 V2 (Erin)6.48.442
Kef R3 Meta (Erin)6.38.036
Philharmonic BMR v2 (Erin)6.17.733
Ascend Acoustics Sierra-2EX V25.98.04.3
Philharmonic Ceramic Mini (Erin)5.97.942
Revel M16 with sealed port [readme] (Amir)5.9????
Elac Debut Reference DBR-62 (Amir)(Erin)5.77.843
Revel M105 (Amir)5.98.351
Revel M106 (Amir)5.88.046
JBL HDI-1600 (Amir)5.87.638
Kef LS50 Meta (Amir)5.77.843
Revel M16 with open port (Amir)5.67.745
Arendal Sound 1723 Monitor S THX (Erin)5.17.142
Polk Audio Signature Elite ES20 (Amir)4.86.739
Arendal Sound 1723 Bookshelf S THX (Erin)4.87.662
Arendal Sound 1723 Monitor THX (Erin) (Amir)4.87.045
Arendal Sound 1961 Bookshelf (Erin)4.47.368

Towers < US$3,900/pair:
NamePSPSwSubLFX
Revel F2066.4*8.1*36*
Ascend Acoustics Sierra Titan6.28.141
Wharfedale Linton 85th Anniversary (Erin)6.07.836
Kef R5 (Erin) [Discontinued on Feb 2023, replaced by R5 Meta]5.97.533
Revel F35 (Amir)5.77.639
Arendal Sound 1961 Tower (Erin)5.17.551
JBL 4309 (Amir)3.75.741
Kef R7 [Discontinued Feb 2023, replaced by R7 Meta]******
Revel F36******
Philharmonic BMR Tower (AH)******

-from my thread
Thanks sweetchaos! I had indeed seen your list of course :)
I would really love to get the Revel F206, but it's way beyond my budget here in Europe as far as I searched, reaching up to 4,500EUR per pair. Same for the Ascend Acoustics Sierra, which (if I am lucky to find it somewhere) is above 4K
Now, as far as the Lintons are concerned....I really love these speakers! And even though I mentioned in my previous replies that I'm not a fan of stand mounts, these come with nice mounts where I could put my LPs in. However, they're a bit "chubby" for where I want to place them, plus I don't think they go well aesthetically with the rest of the room.

Stan
 
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stango

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Hi fellow Dutchman :)

Do you want them to be new or are you OK with used?
Do you want towers or are bookshelves + sub an option?

For new towers (what it seems you are looking for) I would at least add a revel option to the list. F36 can be bought new for 2400 a pair. Or maybe a pair of f206 on discount somewhere.
Hi there BossBunos! :)

I don't want the speakers to be necessarily new, I'm also OK if I can find a used deal somewhere. But I'd prefer that "somewhere" to be an actual store that could provide me with some sort of guarantee. In other words, I'm hesitant to buy anything at this price point from an individual, even though I've found some sweet deals on Hifishark and on our own dutch Marktplaats.

My preference is tower speakers indeed. Regarding the sub, to be honest I'm not too sure whether I should keep it or ditch it, especially if I end up buying tall towers that'll have more woofer drivers. However, the "problem" with my listening area (which is the case in many Dutch houses as you will know) is the fact that it is on the 2nd floor, which means that part of the sound is...going down the stairs and hence doesn't bounce back from the wall as it would in a classic rectangular room. That's the main reason I'm still keeping the sub and why I'm opting for tower speakers.

Thanks for the suggestion of the Revel F36, I will definitely take a closer look at it!


Stan
 

GaryY

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Thanks sweetchaos! I had indeed seen your list of course :)
I would really love to get the Revel F206, but it's way beyond my budget here in Europe as far as I searched, reaching up to 4,500EUR per pair. Same for the Ascend Acoustics Sierra, which (if I am lucky to find it somewhere) is above 4K
Now, as far as the Lintons are concerned....I really love these speakers! And even though I mentioned in my previous replies that I'm not a fan of stand mounts, these come with nice mounts where I could put my LPs in. However, they're a bit "chubby" for where I want to place them, plus I don't think they go well aesthetically with the rest of the room.

Stan
Hi, this was the best deal for F206 in Europe I found. Shop is in UK, but they will ship to you when you contact by Email. You will have to pay custom and VAT for speakers+shipping cost.

 

GaryY

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bodhi

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I'd say either R7 or R11. For any normal size room R7 is enough, but with those prices it doesn't hurt to make sure and get the bigger one. The R11 won't take any extra space and doesn't look that much bigger.
 

chips666

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Hello
Go for the cheapest option 6
Klipsch RP-8000F second hand even version 1
Easy to find at bargain prices in the Netherlands and Belgium
You wont regret it
Enjoy...
 
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stango

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Hi, this was the best deal for F206 in Europe I found. Shop is in UK, but they will ship to you when you contact by Email. You will have to pay custom and VAT for speakers+shipping cost.

Oooh nice deal indeed, thanks!
I'm going to email them to check the options (and the eventual price ;))
 
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stango

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I'd say either R7 or R11. For any normal size room R7 is enough, but with those prices it doesn't hurt to make sure and get the bigger one. The R11 won't take any extra space and doesn't look that much bigger.
The R7 Meta's started the whole speaker upgrade journey for me actually :D
I was reading several rave reviews about them and then thought about checking whether the non-Meta R7 was any cheaper after the launch of the Meta.

The R11 is 30cm taller than the Yamaha NS-555 that I currently have and almost 20cm taller than the R7, which is not substantially more indeed.
 

GaryY

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Oooh nice deal indeed, thanks!
I'm going to email them to check the options (and the eventual price ;))
Good luck to you. In case of M106, it looked possible to negotiate -100 pfund. Please try for F206 :)
 
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stango

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Hello
Go for the cheapest option 6
Klipsch RP-8000F second hand even version 1
Easy to find at bargain prices in the Netherlands and Belgium
You wont regret it
Enjoy...
Klipsch is generally a brand that I like, because I've always considered it to produce a wide soundstage. When growing up my father had a Sony CD Player and a Sony Amp and used Klipsch bookshelves (don't remember the model anymore, it was in the mid-90s), which had a really nice sound to my then teenage ears.
And also the current sub that I have, even though not high end by any means, can be extremely loud and accompanies the speakers really nicely.
As a result, yes, I am actually thinking of going to have a listen to the RP-8000F.
 

lowkeyoperations

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Whatever speakers you get, add room correction to your budget.

You could connect a Minidsp DDRc-24 between your Pre-out Main-in on the amp and run everything through Dirac live.
It’s amazing the peaks and troughs you will clear up below 500hz in just about every living room.

You might even find you don’t need a speaker upgrade…although Dirac+new speakers is always going to be more fun!
 

bodhi

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The R7 Meta's started the whole speaker upgrade journey for me actually :D
I was reading several rave reviews about them and then thought about checking whether the non-Meta R7 was any cheaper after the launch of the Meta.

The R11 is 30cm taller than the Yamaha NS-555 that I currently have and almost 20cm taller than the R7, which is not substantially more indeed.
The KEFs, old and meta and Revel F206 are all almost as good as it gets. All are safe bets.

Basically the remaining question is if you need lowest bass, in which case you could just as well get R3 or M106, even M105 and a subwoofer. With music, the improvements are available but opinions vary of the magnitude. It might be more like acquired taste or something to do when you get the upgrade itch. Bigger towers still benefit from subwoofer so what I think would make most sense is get endgame towers and leave it at that until some other time.
 
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