Strictly Speakers

dudemandudeman Posts: 1,584
edited April 2017 in Musicians and Gearheads
Looking back at the discussions about "What Gear Should I Buy?" or ""What's the Best....?" it occurred to me that it would be nice to have a single place for speaker reviews and recommendations.

In my opinion, speakers contribute to the overall experience with a stereo more than any other single piece of equipment.

I know that some of you are currently looking for, researching or pining for new speakers.

So, what are you using? What do you like and dislike about them? What issues have you had? Would you recommend them to a friend?
If hope can grow from dirt like me, it can be done. - EV
Post edited by dudeman on


  • dudemandudeman Posts: 1,584
    edited April 2017
    Wharfedale Diamond 8.1s are what I use for near field studio monitors.

    Ported, 2-way design with Kevlar woven woofers with phase plugs and dome tweeters. Mine have maple looking cabinets with silverish/goldish baffles. Gold plated binding posts are substantial and I read somewhere that they use Monster Cable for the internal wiring. (Not a fan of Monster, FTR). At any rate, they look similar to some of the bookshelf offerings from Polk, PSB or B&W due to the yellow woven woofers.

    They're crisp, detailed and very accurate to the source provided they are fed enough power. Ability to bi-wire or bi-amp them provides flexibility but I just run them straight.

    No longer in production and they aren't exactly celebrated in audiophile circles so that means that they can be had for cheap.

    I got mine a few years ago with a nice set of heavy stands for $100.00.

    Downsides include a 6 ohm nominal impedance and fairly low sensitivity which means they need a fair bit of power to really sing. Also, they're pretty small so I wouldn't recommend them to anyone who had a big room to fill with sound.

    For shelf systems, small rooms or monitoring applications, I would recommend them, especially when you consider anything else in the $100.00 per pair category.

    Edit: I found a review for these speakers.

    Post edited by dudeman on
    If hope can grow from dirt like me, it can be done. - EV
  • dudemandudeman Posts: 1,584
    No one wants to share their experiences with their speakers?
    If hope can grow from dirt like me, it can be done. - EV
  • tempo_n_groovetempo_n_groove Posts: 12,074
    I ran Yamaha speakers at first from my Pioneer 8500II. The music all sounded like it was "missing" something.

    I then purchased the Martin Logan 15's and my lord was there a HUUUUUUUUGE difference in the sound quality. I bought them used as these can be quite expensive new. They are worth it.

    After reading and researching I learned that the former speaker engineer at JBL went to work for Pioneer and he created the HPM-100 made specifically for the Pioneer Amps. Searching and looking I finally found a pair and bought them. These are better than the Martin Logans! The big ass sub on it is what I really love! Music you can feel.

    Eventually when I get around to it I'll set up the ML's as rears for my setup.

    So for a nice shelf speaker the ML's are great. If you have more room I'd take the HPM's all day long.
  • crookedcrosscrookedcross NJPosts: 560
    Only 2 posts in and this thread is already making me wish I have a permanent home I can set up and not have to move every 3-4 years. haha
  • tempo_n_groovetempo_n_groove Posts: 12,074

    Only 2 posts in and this thread is already making me wish I have a permanent home I can set up and not have to move every 3-4 years. haha

    I feel your pain. I had to move every 6 months to a year for 15 years... Last 5 years I've been in the same area so I finally got to build my "man cave".
  • As I've written about in other threads, I totally agree with tempo. I have an all vintage setup from Pioneer's golden era. I have the PL540 (I think that the model number but I could dbl check if somebody wants the info or any advice please feel free to pm me), running into an 8500ii amplifier, a cambridge audio phono preamp but is really not needed as the phono stage in the 8500ii is excellent, and for speaker I tried multiple pairs and ended up with the matching built HPM100's. They are beast with plenty of tone on every level and warmth with this system for days. I do have a second set of Advent Large speakers and KLH Model's that I'm about done recapping that will be second pair I run with them. I was able to score the TT for around $350 serviced with a Grado Prestige green cartridge (so I have room for improvement there but totally satisfied with it for now, the amp was $350 serviced with a small warranty (which it doesn't need cause it's built like a tank) as well and the speakers I got the pair for $300. So total setup was about $1000 and it blows any I know and listen to away. Most of them overspent on their systems paying anywhere from $3000-$10000 and still sounds harsh and not the way the record was intended to be heard.

    So my 2 cents, go vintage, and those Pioneer HPM100's are incredible. Find them and buy them. If you need help or have questions pm me. They can be found and any little maintenance I'm sure is easy and could walk a monkey thru probably.
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