Hi Fi Shootout May 2010

Hi Fi Shootout May 2010

 

The gathering at Francis’ home was more of a chance to catch up with old friends and make new ones, share info and tips and finally listen to speakers which we normally won’t be able to do so in showrooms. Kudos again to Francis, who is the forum’s all round gentleman and friendly bro, for opening up his home to us.

 

And also to all the bros who brought food, and more importantly their speakers and for wizard for his “human remote” thankless job!

 

Now a few thoughts on the speakers I heard during the demo:

 

The thumpers:

 

PSB –

This is a tower of power, and offers a sonic experience not unlike a gale force. Truly this speaker was built for the big moments in music and especially for HT, with a bass that makes you ponder if a subwoofer is still needed.  Much like a V8 muscle car, it does best in showing off the powerful moments, but subtlety and finesse are not its strong point.

 

Monitor Audio RS 6 –

Another tower of power, but with a more musical slant. It gives up bass extension and sonic impact to gain a little more finesse. Even so the 60Hz bass hump attracts certain listeners and the bright treble has polarised listeners into those who like that and those who find it grating. There is still a lot of bass, but it tries to give you more detail. Buyers of this speaker need to audition and partner it well.

 

The home made brew:

 

Synthesis was kind enough to bring along two of his creations, and he shows that he is the master of cabinetry in our forum. The handiwork is so refined, that you will never suspect this was a home made speaker with custom components. The results are telling. His creations excel in mids and vocals, and show that you can make fine speakers with less money if you are handy with your tools. Kudos to the master of the DIY.

 

Junior’s D'Appolito speaker design brew was another demonstration of how good DIY products can be. At $500, it held its own with smooth vocals and a clean mid. It was not as detailed as the best on show, but it was certainly excellent value for money.

 

 

The vocalists:

 

 

Amphion Helium-

 

A new speaker which I understand was brand new and hence not run it yet. It just did not gel and the sound was somehow disjointed. I was not sure what was really wrong, but it sounded out of timing and did not impress. Perhaps, some running in will help.

 

Dynaudio Audience 42

 

IMHO, this was the perfect small speaker of the day. It had a good presentation of vocals and a sweet treble, which was detailed without being grating. There was minimal bass from the small cone, but it had good timing and the imaging was impressive.

 

Emotivas

 

The online company is following in the footsteps of Outlaw, SVS and Hsu in proving good VFM, and this d'appolito speaker design was another one with a good balance of mids and highs. Again size does not allow it to plunge the depths like the PSB, but whatever bass it offered was attractive and the sound was close to the Dynaudio, despite costing significantly less.

 

 

 

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