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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2018 3:25 pm 
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Location: Victoria, BC, CA
Out of all the forte editions the first (FORTE 1) is my favorite. It sounds more balanced and musical than the 2nd and 3rd Forte. $700 is a good price for a pair in decent shape. I run mine with a tube preamp and amp, I think it is a must.

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Greg


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2018 3:59 pm 
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That list of speakers is about as varied in sound signature as you can get. Better to pick a style of sound first and then ask for recommendations on that tonality.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2018 5:05 pm 
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petersch wrote:
I could help with Magnepan MG 3.6/R and Klipsch La Scala (upgraded), no room for Klipschorns but if I ever find a set I'd buy them in a heartbeat and make them fit.
I have a set of Cornwalls out on loan or you could hear those as well. I love collecting stuff, LOL


I own K-Horns and after hearing some Cornwalls in a friend's system, they are on my list of speakers to try in my home and perhaps keep to switch around in my system from time to time.

I suspect the person who you lent the Cornwalls to will want to buy them from you!


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2018 5:25 pm 
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planetofsound wrote:
That list of speakers is about as varied in sound signature as you can get. Better to pick a style of sound first and then ask for recommendations on that tonality.


Thanks but I've already gone through to narrow down a list of speakers based on a certain goal and now I will try to listen to determine the sound signature I like - seems the more logical approach IMO.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2018 5:29 pm 
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edge42 wrote:
Thanks but I've already gone through to narrow down a list of speakers based on a certain goal and now I will try to listen to determine the sound signature I like - seems the more logical approach IMO.

That's the best thing to do at this point. All the pictures and advice in the world don't compare to listening and deciding for yourself what sound suits your tastes. Good luck on the quest!


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2018 5:36 pm 
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James_W wrote:
edge42 wrote:
Thanks but I've already gone through to narrow down a list of speakers based on a certain goal and now I will try to listen to determine the sound signature I like - seems the more logical approach IMO.

That's the best thing to do at this point. All the pictures and advice in the world don't compare to listening and deciding for yourself what sound suits your tastes. Good luck on the quest!


2 ways to skin a cat I guess, now like you said it'll be about finding the sound signature that appeals the most :).


Last edited by edge42 on Thu Mar 01, 2018 5:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2018 5:43 pm 
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Keep us updated on your journey!

Good hunting.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2018 8:52 pm 
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NordicNorm wrote:
Keep us updated on your journey!

Good hunting.


You bet...

Update #1: Martin Logan Summits

So I spent a couple hours over lunch visiting Shand at Audio 5.1 to check out the Martin Logans, I'd never heard panel speakers before so I was pretty excited.

Needless to say these didn't let me down. We listened to a pair of Summits because that's what he had hooked up but they're more than I want to spend ($7,999), although they definitely gave me a feel of what these ML panel speakers can offer in a room about twice the size of mine. He has a pair of demo Theos or new ESL-X's in my price range though.

I took some notes on the Summits as I listened:

-Image locked right in the center of the speakers, excellent imaging. Can easily pick-out instruments (Dave Brubeck's Take Five has an awesome drum solo about 2 minutes in and this really shone through the ML's, eerily realistic placement of drum strikes

-Massive sound stage, sounds like the sound is coming from everywhere BUT the speakers - this was a crazy effect when walking around the room or towards the speakers

-Very natural and revealing

-Bass was strong enough that they did pipe organs well enough to sound real, and instruments like the bass were very accurate

-Great on orchestral music and maybe even better on jazz and vocals, Dave Brubeck's Take Five sounded better than I'd ever heard it and that was streamed through Bluetooth because his amp
wouldn't accept my USB cable for hi-res streaming

-Sounded clear and coherent even turned up

-Zero listener fatigue, I could have sat there all day picking new songs on Tidal to make those things sing

-They're huge! Maybe too big? The Theos and ESL-X are much smaller and specs are fairly comparable save for some bass extension, but my room is 1/2 the size so that may not be a bad thing. The Summit's size may overwhelm my room, they're something like almost 6' tall and 18-20" wide. Something to think about there.

Overall this was a great start and I could see myself loving a pair of these. But, don't buy the first car you see right...


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 02, 2018 3:47 am 
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edge42 wrote:
Needless to say these didn't let me down. We listened to a pair of Summits because that's what he had hooked up but they're more than I want to spend ($7,999), although they definitely gave me a feel of what these ML panel speakers can offer in a room about twice the size of mine. He has a pair of demo Theos or new ESL-X's in my price range though.

You could probably find a used pair of Spires or Montis within your budget if you're patient and keep your eyes open.

But yeah, they require a fair amount of space around them to sound optimal. Not sure they would be the best fit in your room (although only you can decide that).

WAF is pretty high though. :D

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 02, 2018 5:28 am 
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I wonder how the I's compare to the newest III's, the general consensus seems to be that the I's need a lot of updating to be comparable. I'll look into it though, thanks!


By all accounts on the Klipsch forums they are voiced much the same with modern, newly developped HF and mid horns (lots of R&D and proprietary stuff going on in there).

I own an array of Heritage Klipsch, including the Forte I, and (falling into the much seen trope of only recommending speakers one owns) I've got to say that Klipsch does indeed meet much of your initial criteria, namely dynamics and low distortion.

The stock Forte I is great as is, provided the passive woofer is still good and that the cabinet is properly sealed. Many, myself included, have switched out the diaphragme for a titanium replacement from Crites to good effect, gaining some sheen and a little more air. Prices are rising on these as the III retails for nearly 4000$usd.

Now, if you want something special, go listen to some LaScalas, though your room might be a tad small for those.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 02, 2018 6:09 am 
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NordicNorm wrote:
edge42 wrote:
Needless to say these didn't let me down. We listened to a pair of Summits because that's what he had hooked up but they're more than I want to spend ($7,999), although they definitely gave me a feel of what these ML panel speakers can offer in a room about twice the size of mine. He has a pair of demo Theos or new ESL-X's in my price range though.



You could probably find a used pair of Spires or Montis within your budget if you're patient and keep your eyes open.

But yeah, they require a fair amount of space around them to sound optimal. Not sure they would be the best fit in your room (although only you can decide that).

WAF is pretty high though. :D


I'm definitely going to keep my eyes open, we rearranged and opened up a bunch more space in the room yesterday to accommodate something much larger than the stand mounts we have currently.

-- 02 Mar 2018 14:10 --

Precautious D wrote:
Quote:
I wonder how the I's compare to the newest III's, the general consensus seems to be that the I's need a lot of updating to be comparable. I'll look into it though, thanks!


By all accounts on the Klipsch forums they are voiced much the same with modern, newly developped HF and mid horns (lots of R&D and proprietary stuff going on in there).

I own an array of Heritage Klipsch, including the Forte I, and (falling into the much seen trope of only recommending speakers one owns) I've got to say that Klipsch does indeed meet much of your initial criteria, namely dynamics and low distortion.

The stock Forte I is great as is, provided the passive woofer is still good and that the cabinet is properly sealed. Many, myself included, have switched out the diaphragme for a titanium replacement from Crites to good effect, gaining some sheen and a little more air. Prices are rising on these as the III retails for nearly 4000$usd.

Now, if you want something special, go listen to some LaScalas, though your room might be a tad small for those.


Thanks for the info! You're right that the LaScalas would be too big but it seems the Klipschorns would work in the corners, or the Cornwalls could be doable as well.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 02, 2018 1:42 pm 
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UPDATE #2:

Okay, so I took the plunge and headed to another dealer to listen to the Klipsch Cornwall III's. Didn't have my usual Telarc test CD so I just winged it with the Tidal song I played with the ML's yesterday.

Set-up on 25w tubes, the KC's sounded really nice with everything we threw at them - rock, classical, jazz, vocals, acoustic. Honestly they sounded more coherent and natural than I expected. Here are my notes on these:

-Being a shorter floorstanding design, they sounded lower to the ground - soundstage didn't move up vertically nearly as much as the ML's. Mind you room was 1/2 the size with 8' ceilings vs 10-11'

-Sound was completely effortless even on 25w tubes, very dynamic

-Good bass extension, even more than the ML's in this room - but this room was only 1/3 the volume in comparison so in essence no comparison at all really

-Really enjoyed listening to these for a while, they're just plain fun

-Feel like I need to hear them more optimally set-up, because they didn't wow me as expected but were very good.

-These are quite huge in person, but the walnut veneers are nice and very doable. Plus, hence their name they are at home pushed against a wall or into a corner (although I wouldn't do the latter due to reflections alone).

PART 2:

I spotted some Opera Quinta's that looked interesting and we agreed that I should have a listen to these as well. Didn't have a lot of time today so I'll be going back tomorrow to try some Focal Arias and Bryston Middle T's (the Brystons on their recommendation) for further comparison.

We switched to a SS 120wpc amp for these, however before we did that we played the Cornwalls on this amp for a while to properly compare them using the same amplification.

In this room on this day, the Operas were very, VERY impressive and we both quickly forgot about the Cornwalls. I've heard very little about this company but these were darn good:

-Much larger soundstage, sounded very airy and open in comparison. Soundstage wasn't as as big as the ML's, but not far off - I have a feeling that in a larger room these would be more comparable based on what I heard today

-Imaging is bang on, we could easily pick-up instrument locations and these were easily on par with the ML's for imaging, maybe even better? In Dave Brubeck's Take Five I heard new details that I hadn't heard before, some kind of faint wooden instrument sound emanating from center stage.

-Female vocals were perfectly natural and the music from these speakers was very smooth, almost soothing. Fuel to Fire by Agnes Obel almost put us to sleep even at a moderate-high volume.

-Bass may have felt a little leaner, but perhaps more natural. Maybe we were just hearing a lack of resonance. Specs show frequency response to 30Hz and the salesperson with me thought these sounded fuller. Christian McBride's Night Train sounded incredible on these, very natural and really drew us into the music. I thought I detected some lack of bass but wasn't able to compare to the Cornwalls back-to-back to replay that section, I'll try that song again tomorrow.

-Surprisingly given their sophisticated appearance, these speakers rocked very well too. John Mayer's excellent track Out of My Mind Live at the Nokia Theater was very impressive, as much as people say the KC's rock these were the more satisfying of the two on this track today. Same for Nils Lofgren Band's Bass & Drum Intro.

Overall an interesting and surprising day.

More to come this weekend as I should be able to hear the Focal Aria 926's (they don't have the 936 or 948 in stock right now but the line all sounds similar so it'll give me a good idea), and the Bryston Middle T on their recommendation.

Also thanks to another awesome CAM member I may be able to here some very well-rated Tannoy towers as well.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 02, 2018 2:07 pm 
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Is it possible use your amp when auditioning speakers?

Greg


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 02, 2018 5:06 pm 
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Audioaardvark wrote:
Is it possible use your amp when auditioning speakers?

Greg


I second this! I lugged my amp around to audition speakers a couple years ago and found it very helpful. Some amp/speaker combos are not ideal and it would be a complete downer to buy new speakers only to discover they don’t play well with the rest of your gear.
This is a very interesting thread along with the speaker suggestion thread. Best of luck with your search!


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 02, 2018 5:12 pm 
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Agreed. I lugged around my power amp, dac/preamp and cables, and helped a lot to get an idea of sound/synergy.

One of the dealers said about my gear that "don't bother for next time, I'm sure our gear is more than good enough for speaker auditions." :shock: :lol:


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