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Kef Blade Vs B&W 802 Vs WA Sophia without altering electric components

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Dear all,
I'm surprised & happy to see this section which might throw some light for the subject mentioned scenario. All these years my ears are tuned with B&W starting from their early 601, 602 S1, 602 S2, 602 S3, CM 7, SCM1, 805N until the last CM8 S2, which I'm possessing for last 6 months.
At present, I'm highly inclined to swap the CM8 S2 due to their highs, whereas I'm a person who want to LISTEN without any colors. So thought of purchasing a 802N pair with my friend, however I also got an offer for KEF blade from another friend.

I'm a frequent traveller who spends few hours with my stereo setup & I have my living room (16' x 13') mod. & treated partially for the acoustics. I'm not in a hurry. If I could wait for the next 6 months & save more, there's also a chance to grab a pair of WA Sophia from my another US immigrating friend. I completely understand all of this requires money & time. However on a hypothetical situation having all these 3 pairs, I would like to understand the pros & cons before choosing them from any experienced audiophiles.
 

sidvee

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So thought of purchasing a 802N pair with my friend, .
The Nautilus tweeter in B&W 802N is at-least 3 generations old. There is significant difference between the old N tweeter and the current generation diamond tweeter of the 8 series to my ears. The current generation sounds significantly better, more resolution, air, smoothness. The old tweeter would be veiled in comparison (In-fact there is no comparison IMO). To my ears even the current 7 series sounds better, I think the 702s2 is a superb speaker and excellent value for money.
Coming to Wilson Audio Sophia, again it is a very old speaker, introduced some 17 years ago. I think there was a mark 2, mark 3 after the original Sophia and then there was the Sasha. IMO I would prefer the newer Sabrina, which sounded more musical to my ears.
I heard the KEF blades only under show condition and I did not particularly like them.
Hope this helps.
Cheers,
Sid
 
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I heard the KEF blades only under show condition and I did not particularly like them.
Hope this helps.
Cheers,
Sid
Thanks Sid, Diamond speakers were on my cards, however I personally had seen many cases of those been burnt just on small variations & all my friends ended up in spending a fortune to replace those tweeters. Henceforth, I compromised on the N-tweeters being 3 generations old, but the change over cost will be inexpensive as that of D-series.

WA are damn expensive & my immigrating friend almost spent around $8k for the Sophia MK2. Now, he's expecting atleast the buyback from WA dealer while upgrading. Yes, I did like the sabrina but that's too stretched from my budget.

The only reason for slight inclination towards KEF blades was that it fits in my budget (sub 1 Million INR) & also the newer version. But at the same time, I don't wanna commit a mistake of choosing an unwanted speaker & later regret.
 

bhagwan

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Dear vijaykarthik123,
Can we know what the 'electronics' are ?
So, we would be in a position to try and extrapolate what speaker will perform in what manner when paired with the 3 options...
All 3 speaker options mentioned are very different in their sound philosophy & the way they play music.
Thanks,
Bhagwan
 
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Hello Vijaykarthick123
You may also look at Gauder Akustik Vescova Mk 2 and Cassiano speakers if you have an opportunity to audition them.
best of luck
Dear, Thanks for the same. However I did had auditioned Berlina RC9 at the states, however it was almost on a 30 Sq.m listening space.
The staging was phenomenal & they used Hegel gears to power'em up.
As I have a limited space of ~208 Sq. ft space, I restricted myself. Also, I doubt if I would ever get into that state of Hegel electronics ever, to drive these.
 
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Dear vijaykarthik123,
Can we know what the 'electronics' are ?
Dear Mr. Bhagwan, yes all these 3 choices completely with different signature, but my hunt was to move towards a pair which can reproduce the raw sound as it was recorded, without any coloration. Out of these 3 pairs, the prime choice for KEF Blade was just the availability, price point, recent launch in the market. But for 802-N it is an all-round performer for any genres but ofcourse with slight coloration. Later was the WA Sophia-2 which is primarily for the obvious reason of having no coloration at all.

I'd got Cary Audio input feeding Monarchy Audio DIP & then the MA 22A DAC which gets to Jeff Rowland Coherence-1 preamp which later gets powered by Acoustic Reality (Class-D) mono blocks delivering 250W @ 8 ohm.
 

bhagwan

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personally, for me - since you use a class D amplifier - choose a speaker that has the softest sounding tweeter - that is all I suggest....else it may become a very uncomfortable experience...
What is your current speaker ? what is to be replaced ??
Sorry, you already stated - B & W CM8 S2
I would go back to the B N W 805 N if possible ....
 

arj

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I'd got Cary Audio input feeding Monarchy Audio DIP & then the MA 22A DAC which gets to Jeff Rowland Coherence-1 preamp which later gets powered by Acoustic Reality (Class-D) mono blocks delivering 250W @ 8 ohm.
HI Vijaykarthik123 , I dont know much about the Transport/Dac you are using but in your experience is that in line with your amp/speaker in terms of Sound quality ?

Especially on the Monarchy DIP, at least in my setup i found it to have a negative impact on the resolution, of course that was the original DIP
 

nosortf

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It would be important to find out which speaker company uses digital amps in their own setups, helpful from a certain view. Piega, Joseph Audio, Elac, Vivid, Marten could be options for your room size.
 
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Dear Members, Apologize on reverting back to this thread after a very long time. Thanks for your PMs as well.
I was little tied up since I expatriated out of India recently.
Still I thought it's better to summarize my findings & conclusion on the speaker purchase.
I was lucky to audition all these speakers before, in different places but with different gears in the respective users own setup.
So, I started eliminating from my narrowed down options pairing my Class-D mono blocks running my favorite samplers.

1) 802-N was a deadly match with the users setup & my amps. It was exactly like, how I intend to listen all my samplers with a controlled bass, sharp highs & perfect mids.
2) KEF Blade were real beauty & massive to be shipped. Also my ears were terrified with highs while I played Weber - #2 [LSO]; The gril who broke my heart [The Gloaming]
3) Sophia were really meaty & couldn't be driven with my tiny boxes, I know it's an injustice but still tried to prove that I was dumb & have to drop-off
4) 804-D2 were again sweeter than 802N, but the bass seemed lean (There's a potential to improve on my speaker line :-D later to 802D2 / D3). ust because they're the latest generation from 802N, I closed down on this.

Finally 804-D2 were picked up, shipped out to my new place & they happily live in my living room. These were also integrated as the Front LR in my 5.1 HTS.
 

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