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Another happy owner of Usher speakers

Marantz offers at HiFiMART.com

anilnadgeri

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Jan 5, 2010
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pune
Hi All,
Just wanted to share my experience. Recently bought Usher S520 speakers. Wonderful speakers. nice build quality. I think it is a great value buy. Preferred them over wharfedale 9.1, PSB M25, MA Silver.
I got them from ARN Banglore. I got them shipped to pune. Overall experience of dealing with ARN staff was great (Ali and Sridhar). They know stuff. Specially since this was my first setup, they gave some valuable advise.

Thanks
 

stevieboy

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May 28, 2008
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bangalore
congrats anilnadgeri!

enjoy your new acquisition :) do post details of what amp and cd player/dvd player you're using with it. and of course impressions when you've listened for a while.

regards
 

psychotropic

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Jul 19, 2008
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Congratulations again. Your experience mirrors mine, I listened to the ushers and found them to be superior to everything i heard including Wharfedale, Monitor Audio, PSB, Epos, Paradigm, Klipsch and Energy.

Was it the Monitor Audio RS1 that you compared this to? Do post detailed impressions on the combination of the Denon amp and the Ushers.
 

thevortex

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Hi All,
Just wanted to share my experience. Recently bought Usher S520 speakers. Wonderful speakers. nice build quality. I think it is a great value buy. Preferred them over wharfedale 9.1, PSB M25, MA Silver.
I got them from ARN Banglore. I got them shipped to pune. Overall experience of dealing with ARN staff was great (Ali and Sridhar). They know stuff. Specially since this was my first setup, they gave some valuable advise.

Thanks
I dont know if you are referring to the PSB Image B25. If so, I dont think the Ushers measure up their extent. The Image B25s are much bigger speakers and can really produce room filling sound with control and heft. From whatever little I heard of the Ushers (admittedly not extensive) I dont think they measure upto the Image B25 speakers.

About the RS1, that too, I am not too sure about. The Marantz-MA RS1 combo is one that I really do happen to like and again the RS1 is a much bigger speaker than the Usher.

My mention of size happens to do with the ability to produce the low frequencies with authority as well.

I would be very curious to know what partnering equipment you used with the Image B25 of PSB (if that is what you are referring to) and the MA RS1.

In fact, psychotropic who owns the Usher S520 himself mentioned that he found very little if any difference between the Ushers and the PSB Alpha B1s - leave alone the Image B25s. He simply preferred the way the Ushers delivered sound to the PSBs. And yes, that is always personal.

No offence meant whatsoever. Just wanting to know about the points of comparison.
 

odyssey

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Apr 4, 2008
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I dont know if you are referring to the PSB Image B25. If so, I dont think the Ushers measure up their extent. The Image B25s are much bigger speakers and can really produce room filling sound with control and heft. From whatever little I heard of the Ushers (admittedly not extensive) I dont think they measure upto the Image B25 speakers.

About the RS1, that too, I am not too sure about. The Marantz-MA RS1 combo is one that I really do happen to like and again the RS1 is a much bigger speaker than the Usher.

My mention of size happens to do with the ability to produce the low frequencies with authority as well.

I would be very curious to know what partnering equipment you used with the Image B25 of PSB (if that is what you are referring to) and the MA RS1.

In fact, psychotropic who owns the Usher S520 himself mentioned that he found very little if any difference between the Ushers and the PSB Alpha B1s - leave alone the Image B25s. He simply preferred the way the Ushers delivered sound to the PSBs. And yes, that is always personal.

No offence meant whatsoever. Just wanting to know about the points of comparison.
No offence taken :)
A few points - the B25s (which I havent heard) but just checked online indeed have a larger woofer but the frequency response spec is about the same. In any case, the imaging itself does not get better with a larger (wider) baffle though there are exceptions (EPs). All things being more or less the same, the smaller speaker (narrower) tends to image better. Imaging is also a function of placement and room, not easy to test them in different rooms/setups when comparing. The RS1 indeed has a slightly tighter bass and go lower in comparison to the 520s, they are larger speakers as you said. yes, there are personal preferences in play as well and this gets triggered depending on your audition music, especially from the lower mids upwards where the two speakers are very different.
Anil (I didnt ask you this) but if you heard both the RS1 and the 520s in the same store, can you post a bit about your experience?

cheers
Sridhar
 

thevortex

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No offence taken :)
A few points - the B25s (which I havent heard) but just checked online indeed have a larger woofer but the frequency response spec is about the same. In any case, the imaging itself does not get better with a larger (wider) baffle though there are exceptions (EPs). All things being more or less the same, the smaller speaker (narrower) tends to image better. Imaging is also a function of placement and room, not easy to test them in different rooms/setups when comparing. The RS1 indeed has a slightly tighter bass and go lower in comparison to the 520s, they are larger speakers as you said. yes, there are personal preferences in play as well and this gets triggered depending on your audition music, especially from the lower mids upwards where the two speakers are very different.
Anil (I didnt ask you this) but if you heard both the RS1 and the 520s in the same store, can you post a bit about your experience?

cheers
Sridhar
I only wish, Sridhar! You know, I was once interested in Usher speakers myself. The problem was one of unavailability of an audition here at Chennai. To answer your question, I did not listen to both the speakers at the same store. It is not possible to.

I would dearly love to listen to the S520s and some of the other speakers mentioned in the same room, with the same partnering equipment. Also my view of the S520 is limited to a 1 hour listening session at psychotropic's place. Also it was not of music that I usually prefer, so could not really make any critical decisions on the speaker. What I did make out was that it was a revealing speaker - fully giving out the NAD signature sound. A tad less sensitive, but good enough for a small room is the impression I got. We actually did an A/B between the S520s and PSB Alpha B1s and thought there was very little difference between the two. I liked the presentation of the acoustic guitars on the Alpha B1s whereas psychotropic liked the presentation of the S520s but both of us agreed that there was not too much of a difference between the two speakers.

Now, I would definitely hasten to add that that does not mean that there is no difference between the two. I would think that with different partnering equipment, in a slightly larger room, I am sure differences would have become more obvious.

Long story short - I would definitely like to do some sort of a comparo between these speakers - Usher S520, MA RS1, PSB Image B25 and the Alpha B1s. Is anybody willing here in Chennai?

PS - Sridhar, I dont know about the specs, but I have heard the Image B25 many times and that is a bookshelf speaker which has oodles of bass. Not loose either. It also has an overall bigger sound, if you see what I mean.
 

psychotropic

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Usher S520 versus PSB Alpha B1

Let me weigh in with my view on the comparison we did. Like the vortex said, the comparison was way too short to make conclusive observations, so these are very very preliminary observations.

The PSB and the Ushers seemed to be reasonably close overall (which makes the PSBs excellent value for 14k), but I decidedly prefer the Ushers for the following reasons (again i am an Usher owner, so ownership bias must be considered by people reading this):

(a) it had decidedly better dynamic range (which is one of its strong suits), the sound had more air about it, especially on the 'morph the cat' track from the album of the same name by donald fagen
(b) i liked the sounds of how it reproduced the mids and mid-bass, guitars and cello and so on...basically i preferred its tone/timbre
(c) it seemed to have tighter bass, but the PSBs were rear ported and there was not enough space behind them to give them a fair run.
(d) the PSBs seemed warmer, but thevortex and I disagreed on that :)

Where the PSBs and the Usher were close, was treble detail and extension, LFE, and the broadly neutral presentation. There's more in common between the PSBs and the Ushers than say the Epos ELS8 or the Wharfedale Diamond. The Epos has better LFE and warmer mids, but loses out in detail and high frequency extension. The Wharfedale also has better LFE (perhaps even more than the Epos), but it's tubby and more 'mass market', not lean and tight and 'hi fi', sweet (artificially?) mids, and less detail.

Comparing the Usher to the BR2, the BR2 again had better LFE, but falls slightly short in detail and well short in dynamic range. Great speakers again, and if you want to cover a bit more of the frequency spectrum than the Ushers or the PSBs, this would be a good choice. The Ushers and the PSBs in the long term would probably need to be augmented by a sub to reach below 50 hz, whereas you could live with the BR2 alone for a longer time.

The comparison was too short to make any conclusive observations though. I'd love to do a more detailed and painstaking comparison (with an SPL meter and test tones and the works) of all these speakers if i got the chance :)
 

vectorhawk

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Apr 19, 2011
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Dubai/Mumbai
Hi Anil,

I live in Navi Mumbai and am interested in the speakers too.. can you gimme a few leads about the cost/delivery/dealer, etc. can you please mail me at my id at gmail dot com?
 
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