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PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 4:07 pm 
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Location: Waverley, NS, CA
I have been looking for a while to replace the Monitor Audio Bronze 6 floor standers in my every day
room. They are just plain dull in their presentation and not what I hoped for at all.

The room is my great room, living room, kitchen, nook, dining room, open plan.
My amp is a Yamaha rn602 2 channel receiver.
https://usa.yamaha.com/products/audio_v ... index.html

This is for everyday TV, radio, cd, Radio Paradise etc, not critical listening.

So, Totem products are so well reviewed and regarded, I thought that's where I would venture.

My local dealer now has limited stock on Totem and the Sky was what I thought I might end up with.

I have auditioned them twice in their treated room with a high end Yamaha integrated, forget the model, like 3k retail. Both the b/shelves and floor standers.
They may be a little short on break in time, guy told be 50-60 hours each.

I listened in a room with numerous speakers in the same price range, 1500-3000.

B&W, Bryston, Psb, M/Audio, a few others .

The Totem's utterly disappointed, both the b/shelves and floor models, which stood side by side.
Absolutely not even close. Just sip, there was a pair of Rainmakers next to the Sky's and they sounded decent.

This months Absolute Sound has the Sky on a cover headline and a very glowing review.
The Sky is presented as a model easier to drive that some of the earlier offerings.

What is the intended room for these speakers, granted they may be a little small for my room, but they were compared to the others in a modest, treated room, maybe 20x 14.

So, what am I missing, I am not being sarcastic, asking a real question.
Surely a few more hours of break in would not transform this product.

Waddup...


Last edited by allgonoshow on Wed Oct 18, 2017 3:02 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 4:19 pm 
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I would never pass judgement on any speaker after just a store audition. Take advantage of in house demos that most stores offer.

The MA Bronze 6 are decent for a budget speaker. I would have gladly taken a pair of Totem Hawks or Sky over the MA Silver 8's I was running in my bedroom. Maybe the Totem sound isn't for you. ProAc, Dynaudio, Neat and Audiovector should be looked at.

There are many good options if you are in the 3k range so it should be easy enough to find something.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 4:25 pm 
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Location: Toronto, ON, CA
Keep in mind when you audition you are hearing the system as a whole. Get to know the speakers- try a different amp with them- perhaps something with a bit more current/power- some speakers need a bit more juice to come alive. Totem falls into that category I think.

Your amp is not high current- so might not mate well with the totems as well.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 4:39 pm 
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Location: Winnipeg, MB, CA
can't explain why but some combinations just don't work.
I gifted a pair of Staff to my daughter that I had owned and paired with several amps with great results. I set her up with an 80's Luxman receiver and all was good. I just took a little tube amp to her that I had some time with on both sets of speakers at home and it performed very well, yet when I hooked it up at her place I was quite disappointed; not the same at all to what I heard at home.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 4:50 pm 
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Location: Stratford, ON, CA
Hi,

I am going to say something here that is going to irritate some people, maybe even infuriate a few people. And I am torn up about it. My grandma said; if you can't say something nice, then zip it up. So, this will be very carefully phrased.

I have heard and intentionally auditioned Totem speakers many many times, going back to their beginnings and, sad to say, I just cannot warm up to them. The TAVES 2017 room was another example. It was a beautifully appointed and organized room and many visitors around me were rapturous. I felt like I was missing some party that was going on as Vince B. buzzed around smiling and chatting with people. Sometimes I think I really want to be in the club, after all it is a Canadian company, even french Canadian in a certain way, and after years of reading CAM postings the Totem line has to be one of the most favoured if not the most favoured speaker line mentioned. But, for some reason, I just don't seem to get it. What I always hear with Totems are a series of designs that are for me (emphasis added) too forward and in my face.

I have come to the conclusion that it is not the Totems that are the problem, but my hearing. There are far too many people on CAM and elsewhere who hold opinions I respect and who simply love them. I don't think they all can be wrong, So maybe there are just some people with certain anomalous sensitivities to whatever Totems do that cause joy in others, but for a few oddballs like me they have to be kept at arm's distance. Now, for instance, at the show, in the Hegel room, they were using a pair of Pylon speakers form Poland, and I simply couldn't listen to them, but others thought they were ravishing. So, this has to be marked down to large fundamental differences in our hearing perceptions.

Just saying this ... and praying it doesn't lead to a flame war as I am only trying to suggest a possible answer to the question posed by the OP, and maybe to the larger question of why we like some systems and abhor others.

Cheers,
David Neice

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 4:58 pm 
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Location: Toronto, ON, CA
buybye88 wrote:
Just saying this ... and praying it doesn't lead to a flame war as I am only trying to suggest a possible answer to the question posed by the OP, and maybe to the larger question of why we like some systems and abhor others.


I do not see much difference between audio and vegetables. Some people like asparagus, some don't. The same with certain speakers, amps, whatever.

I have never been much of a Totem fan, though they can sound good. A stand mount with a 5" woofer is never going to do it for me.

I think the great part of this hobby is personal taste. When you let other people do the listening for you, it stops being fun.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 5:00 pm 
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Location: St. John's, NL, CA
I had heard some MA Bronze's at my cousins place on a NAD 316... I was blown away at the veritable deal that this equipment can be had for at a reasonable price... In the last couple years, I managed to pick up a pair of Silver 2s, which I thought would give similar low end response to the smaller Bronze towers... They do have the low end impact, but there was something lacklustre that I felt with them using my Rotel, Cambridge Audio and a beefier NAD... Not sure what it is but they just didn't shine for me... Stuck with my Focals, but never ditched the MAs...

Tried the MAs on a Jolida tube amp recently, and thought the Focals sounded disappointing and grainy. Using the MAs... The sound was lush and full...

Moral of the story, never sell a pair of speakers... Because they will eventually find their way to a decent sounding amp ;)

Synergy, I think, is key. I think that I don't enjoy an overly boomy presentation, nor do I enjoy an overly bright presentation... I sort of like a laid back combination of both, but with lots of detail. Most of my listening is done with Rotel & Tannoy combination, but have been contemplating upping the ante for amplification and trying a Creek Evo or maybe even NAIM... But, on the island is hard to get an at home demo of the Creek, and I don't particularly feel like going to the one dealer in town to demo unless I am fairly close to committing on buying...


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 5:01 pm 
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I drove to Ontario last week and spent a fair bit of time with both the Sky monitor and tower and found both to be lively and entertaining. They were driven by a Icon tube preamp and Bryston 4B cubed using either the Bryston turntable or BDA-3 DAC as a source. I did direct comparison's with Focals, Bryston's and Joseph Audio speakers and came away quite impressed with the little Totems ( particularly the towers ). Room was somewhere around 16 by 20.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 5:02 pm 
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Location: hawkesbury, ON, CA
loose the Yamaha.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 5:03 pm 
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I’ve owned a pair of Totem Hawks along side Monitor Audio Silver 6 and preferred the MA over the Hawks. Amplification was a Wyred 4 Sound 250 watt Int. I can’t say the W4S was a good mate for the Hawks – never tried them with a different amplifier. But paired with the Silver 6’s it was a match made in heaven. I also own an older Onkyo HT Receiver that I use in my bedroom for watching TV. Fortunately it has not suffered the same HDMI issues as many of them do (knock on wood). Using the Onkyo with the MA Silver 6’s is pretty lifeless.

Im bringing this up because the MA Silver and Bronze share a lot of common characteristics. As newer Silver models are introduced, the older tech is usually passed onto the Bronze. No discredit to your Yamaha (no experience with it) but different amplification could be whats needed to bring those MA Bronzes to life. Your dealer may also be more flexible in allowing a home demo of an amplifier than a speaker. Just a consideration.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 5:07 pm 
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Posts: 701
Location: Barrie, ON, CA
allgonoshow wrote:
I have been looking for a while to replace the Monitor Audio Bronze 6 floor standers in my every day
room. They are just plain dull in their presentation and not what I hoped for at all.

The room is my great room, living room, kitchen, nook, dining room, open plan.
My amp is a Yamaha rn602 2 channel receiver.
https://usa.yamaha.com/products/audio_v ... index.html

This is for everyday TV, radio, cd, Radio Paradise etc, not critical listening.

So, Totem products are so well reviewed and regarded, I thought that's where I would venture.

My local dealer now has limited stock on Totem and the Sky was what I thought I might end up with.

I have auditioned them twice in their treated room with a high end Yamaha integrated, forget the model, like 3k retail. Both the b/shelves and floor standers.
They may be a little short on break in time, guy told be 50-60 hours each.

I listened in a room with numerous speakers in the same price range, 1500-3000.

B&W, Bryston, Psb, M/Audio, a few others .

The Totem's utterly disappointed, both the b/shelves and floor models, which stood side by side.
Absolutely not even close. Just sip, there was a pair of Rainmakers next to the Sky's and they sounded decent.

This months Absolute Sound has the Sky on a cover headline and a very glowing review.
The Sky is presented as a model easier to drive that some of the earlier offerings.

What is the intended room for these speakers, granted they may be a little small for my room, but they were compared to the others in a modest, treated room, maybe 20x 14.

So, what am I missing, I am not being sarcastic, asking a real question.
Surely a few more hours of break in would not transform this product.

Waddup...


The Totem Sky and Sky floorstander require 250+ hours of burn in, period.

I have experienced this three times. They are not great before burn in, at all. Even 200 hours was underwhelming. After 250+ hours they are fantastic. It's not a subtle change.

Again, you listened to raw speakers. They are indeed great. Not so much before the 250 hour mark. 1" silk domes take time.

-- 18 Oct 2017 01:11 --

sthomas1049 wrote:
I’ve owned a pair of Totem Hawks along side Monitor Audio Silver 6 and preferred the MA over the Hawks. Amplification was a Wyred 4 Sound 250 watt Int. I can’t say the W4S was a good mate for the Hawks – never tried them with a different amplifier. But paired with the Silver 6’s it was a match made in heaven. I also own an older Onkyo HT Receiver that I use in my bedroom for watching TV. Fortunately it has not suffered the same HDMI issues as many of them do (knock on wood). Using the Onkyo with the MA Silver 6’s is pretty lifeless.

Im bringing this up because the MA Silver and Bronze share a lot of common characteristics. As newer Silver models are introduced, the older tech is usually passed onto the Bronze. No discredit to your Yamaha (no experience with it) but different amplification could be whats needed to bring those MA Bronzes to life. Your dealer may also be more flexible in allowing a home demo of an amplifier than a speaker. Just a consideration.


Totem Hawks are not the Sky. Also, Bronze is definitely not the Silver. Monitor Audio Series vary quite a lot in sound. Totem vary far, far more in sound be model.

Your preference is not wrong, nor can it be. However, both Silver and the Hawk are fantastic but very different. Also, the current bronze series is very different from the Sky.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 5:21 pm 
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Location: Toronto, ON, CA
I was really hoping Vince would bring out the heavy artillery at TAVES this time....the smallish SKY - bookshelf and floor-stander - sounded, well, smallish to me.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 5:30 pm 
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Adriankn wrote:

sthomas1049 wrote:
I’ve owned a pair of Totem Hawks along side Monitor Audio Silver 6 and preferred the MA over the Hawks. Amplification was a Wyred 4 Sound 250 watt Int. I can’t say the W4S was a good mate for the Hawks – never tried them with a different amplifier. But paired with the Silver 6’s it was a match made in heaven. I also own an older Onkyo HT Receiver that I use in my bedroom for watching TV. Fortunately it has not suffered the same HDMI issues as many of them do (knock on wood). Using the Onkyo with the MA Silver 6’s is pretty lifeless.

Im bringing this up because the MA Silver and Bronze share a lot of common characteristics. As newer Silver models are introduced, the older tech is usually passed onto the Bronze. No discredit to your Yamaha (no experience with it) but different amplification could be whats needed to bring those MA Bronzes to life. Your dealer may also be more flexible in allowing a home demo of an amplifier than a speaker. Just a consideration.


Totem Hawks are not the Sky. Also, Bronze is definitely not the Silver. Monitor Audio Series vary quite a lot in sound. Totem vary far, far more in sound be model.

Your preference is not wrong, nor can it be. However, both Silver and the Hawk are fantastic but very different. Also, the current bronze series is very different from the Sky.


Not sure where you are going with this. My post was to illustrate how amplification plays an important factor in how a speaker represents itself. My advice on this was not mentioned in the thread so I felt it had value. Well aware the Silver is not the Hawk which in turn is not the Sky or the Bronze – no need to try and explain the obvious!


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 5:34 pm 
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Location: Thornhill, ON, CA
I went from speakers that had indirect firing 8" woofers at 120 Hz crossover (steep cutoff) and midrange emphasis to a set of Hawks, which are probably stronger in the higher and lower range. My experience is that these things have amazing punch for their unobtusive size. In fact I was so impressed with the Hawks I went and bought a pair of beaks. Somebody (Vince) really knows what he's doing by the sounds of it.

After listening in the different rooms at TAVES the Totems that were playing (white with 2 small woofer/mids) held their own very well IMHO. They just work really well in my space, around 2' from the rear wall.

I will probably never need a big tower again.

My amp: British Fidelity P270, class A operation to 30W, and 135 WPC. All my sources encorporate tubes in the signal path.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 5:36 pm 
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It's all just a matter of personal tastes. After spending time with fairly common Brittish offerings Totem has become a lot less appealing to me. Buy what sounds better to your ears and makes music more enjoyable.


Last edited by James_W on Tue Oct 17, 2017 5:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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