Accuphase and B&W Owners' Listening Impressions

AKT

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Friends,

I have Accuphase E-260 driving B&W 685 S1. I am using an accuphase DAC-40 onboard DAC. My source is a chromecast audio (optical out) which I plan to upgrade to a Digione signature in immediate future. I use generic 12 AWG speaker cables from Amazon. I want to upgrade to a commensurate speaker pair, hence this thread.

I usually listen to contemporary alternate Bollywood and 80s/90s soft rock & blues. There is a little bit of Jazz thrown in but it's very limited. I favor warm sound with natural human voice notes. I am not a bass head but would like the speakers to touch at least 35Hz. I prefer musical setups as opposed to overtly analytical ones. I do not have a dedicated listening room so would prefer speakers with modest footprints which are not fussy about placements.

I am seeking your listening impressions and suggestions predominantly around accuphase + B&W but I am considering following speakers too so additional feedback is well appreciated.

a) B&W 804 (most preferred. haven't listened to it with accuphase though)
b) Spendor A4/A7 or classic 1/2
c) Wharfdale Linton (really like the retro look. haven't auditioned yet and not sure if they would harness the amp well)
d) Tannoy (have never listened to them except the mini monitors)

I want to stay away from Harbeths due to prohibitive cost of their larger speakers and do not want to consider horns.

Thank you in advance.
 

Maxprocrj

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Friends,

I have Accuphase E-260 driving B&W 685 S1. I am using an accuphase DAC-40 onboard DAC. My source is a chromecast audio (optical out) which I plan to upgrade to a Digione signature in immediate future. I use generic 12 AWG speaker cables from Amazon. I want to upgrade to a commensurate speaker pair, hence this thread.

I usually listen to contemporary alternate Bollywood and 80s/90s soft rock & blues. There is a little bit of Jazz thrown in but it's very limited. I favor warm sound with natural human voice notes. I am not a bass head but would like the speakers to touch at least 35Hz. I prefer musical setups as opposed to overtly analytical ones. I do not have a dedicated listening room so would prefer speakers with modest footprints which are not fussy about placements.

I am seeking your listening impressions and suggestions predominantly around accuphase + B&W but I am considering following speakers too so additional feedback is well appreciated.

a) B&W 804 (most preferred. haven't listened to it with accuphase though)
b) Spendor A4/A7 or classic 1/2
c) Wharfdale Linton (really like the retro look. haven't auditioned yet and not sure if they would harness the amp well)
d) Tannoy (have never listened to them except the mini monitors)

I want to stay away from Harbeths due to prohibitive cost of their larger speakers and do not want to consider horns.

Thank you in advance.

Sale your Accuphase...kill the dilemma....have simple life which may leads to Nirvana.........:D
 

jai1611

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I went looking for similar sort of sound and ended up with the Harbeths (Compact 7ES3). Didnt really consider the B&Ws as they are in a very different price point (the 804 d3 has a list of around 10l). The Wharfedales are supposed to be good but no personal experience there.

In the Spendor lineup, the A and Classic series have very different presentation. Based on what you described, the classic series may suit better. Within the classic lineup, each speaker is different so make sure you hear the specific model you are considering. There are some on demo in Bangalore.

The Tannoy prestige line were going out of production last I heard. Not sure if they are still around.

Another option to try and hear would be the Buchardt S400.
 

Prodigy

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Friends,

I have Accuphase E-260 driving B&W 685 S1. I am using an accuphase DAC-40 onboard DAC. My source is a chromecast audio (optical out) which I plan to upgrade to a Digione signature in immediate future. I use generic 12 AWG speaker cables from Amazon. I want to upgrade to a commensurate speaker pair, hence this thread.

I usually listen to contemporary alternate Bollywood and 80s/90s soft rock & blues. There is a little bit of Jazz thrown in but it's very limited. I favor warm sound with natural human voice notes. I am not a bass head but would like the speakers to touch at least 35Hz. I prefer musical setups as opposed to overtly analytical ones. I do not have a dedicated listening room so would prefer speakers with modest footprints which are not fussy about placements.

I am seeking your listening impressions and suggestions predominantly around accuphase + B&W but I am considering following speakers too so additional feedback is well appreciated.

a) B&W 804 (most preferred. haven't listened to it with accuphase though)
b) Spendor A4/A7 or classic 1/2
c) Wharfdale Linton (really like the retro look. haven't auditioned yet and not sure if they would harness the amp well)
d) Tannoy (have never listened to them except the mini monitors)

I want to stay away from Harbeths due to prohibitive cost of their larger speakers and do not want to consider horns.

Thank you in advance.
This is really a tough situation to be in actually :). The best solution I feel is to carry the Accuphase wherever you go auditioning if possible since the Amp will most likely be same in your setup. Auditioning speakers in isolation might be of little help as you don't know how they will pair with the amp. I think you should insist the dealer for in home audition coz you will get to feel how it sounds at your place as most of us set it up in our living room where we may have very minimal or no option to acoustically treat it like the demo rooms. By doing this I think it will save you a lot of time and energy in looking for that right setup again.

And yes! Accuphase is a very good amp. Don’t sell it please.

All the best!
Regards,
Som
 
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amitk777

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I would go for experimentation on the source, before deciding on the speaker upgrade, if the quality of the sound is the concern.
 

AKT

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I went looking for similar sort of sound and ended up with the Harbeths (Compact 7ES3). Didnt really consider the B&Ws as they are in a very different price point (the 804 d3 has a list of around 10l). The Wharfedales are supposed to be good but no personal experience there.

In the Spendor lineup, the A and Classic series have very different presentation. Based on what you described, the classic series may suit better. Within the classic lineup, each speaker is different so make sure you hear the specific model you are considering. There are some on demo in Bangalore.

The Tannoy prestige line were going out of production last I heard. Not sure if they are still around.

Another option to try and hear would be the Buchardt S400.
Jai - Where do you think I can audition a Buchardt in BLR...? As far as Spendors go, I do plan to audition the classic range this coming week at Audio Lounge, BLR. However, I am secretly hoping the A4/A7 would sound good. Slim floorstanders and easy to place. What more can you ask for (other than great sound of course)...?
I know the Tannoys are folding. not sure if I can audition one at BLR. Anybody??

This is really a tough situation to be in actually :). The best solution I feel is to carry the Accuphase wherever you go auditioning if possible since the Amp will most likely be same in your setup. Auditioning speakers in isolation might be of little help as you don't know how they will pair with the amp. I think you should insist the dealer for in home audition coz you will get to feel how it sounds at your place as most of us set it up in our living room where we may have very minimal or no option to acoustically treat it like the demo rooms. By doing this I think it will save you a lot of time and energy in looking for that right setup again.

And yes! Accuphase is a very good amp. Don’t sell it please.

All the best!
Regards,
Som
Prodigy - That is indeed the intent. But I cannot lug around my setup etc. everywhere. Your impressions would help me narrow down.

Yes, I really like the Accuphase. Somebody on this forum (few years ago) had mentioned that an Accuphase is like a young boy trained in a military school. That description was so apt. I am now looking for a speaker match which makes this disciplined boy sometimes have reckless fun so they can live happily ever after!

I would go for experimentation on the source, before deciding on the speaker upgrade, if the quality of the sound is the concern.
I do not get this. Care to elaborate Amit?
 

arj

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I would suggest the following,

Since you have already decided on the accuphase the B&W might just be the right fit amongst your choices. Expecting to have "Reckless fun" with a controlled amplifier is expecting too much ! the speaker will only follow the amp but you must get the right match for it and B&W may be up your alley. A Tannoy prestige also could be a very good match and is a pretty popular combo

At this level your source will be the most compromised and thats the one area you may need to change even before the speaker and you might just get the "Reckless fun" with higher resolution with just that.
 
Last edited:

Prodigy

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Jai - Where do you think I can audition a Buchardt in BLR...? As far as Spendors go, I do plan to audition the classic range this coming week at Audio Lounge, BLR. However, I am secretly hoping the A4/A7 would sound good. Slim floorstanders and easy to place. What more can you ask for (other than great sound of course)...?
I know the Tannoys are folding. not sure if I can audition one at BLR. Anybody??


Prodigy - That is indeed the intent. But I cannot lug around my setup etc. everywhere. Your impressions would help me narrow down.

Yes, I really like the Accuphase. Somebody on this forum (few years ago) had mentioned that an Accuphase is like a young boy trained in a military school. That description was so apt. I am now looking for a speaker match which makes this disciplined boy sometimes have reckless fun so they can live happily ever after!


I do not get this. Care to elaborate Amit?
Let me send you a PM. May be we can discuss separately.
 

eastofthesun

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I Used to have an Accuphase pre power combo but they used to drive sonus fabersand the sound was lush and lovely. Like someone pointed out earlier i dunno how reckles you can get with an accuphase :) , That said they are very solid amplifiers with a good pedigree,
cheers!
Anand
 

AKT

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I would suggest the following,

Since you have already decided on the accuphase the B&W might just be the right fit amongst your choices. Expecting to have "Reckless fun" with a controlled amplifier is expecting too much ! the speaker will only follow the amp but you must get the right match for it and B&W may be up your alley. A Tannoy prestige also could be a very good match and is a pretty popular combo

At this level your source will be the most compromised and thats the one area you may need to change even before the speaker and you might just get the "Reckless fun" with higher resolution with just that.
Arj - Thank you. This gives me some direction. I am however wondering if metal tweeters (B&W, Focal etc.) would be a little bright for me. As I mentioned, I plan to upgrade to DigiOne Signature but currently toying with a suitable OS. This a different conversation for another time.

Are there no forum members in and around BLR where I can audition an accuphase + B&W combination or an accuphase + tannoy combination?
 
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AKT

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i have indeed heard good things about this pair. trying to find one to audition.
 
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