Need help to select a pair of towers for Stereo

jarneevan

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My current setups are a 7.2 HT with Polk S60s/S35 powered by a humble Pioneer VSX LX AVR and a Stereo with Focal Aria 926 powered by Yamaha RN 803 in the living. Both setups have Subs. Both don't have any fancy seperates like DACs and Preamps. But I do use my iFi Micro BL headphone DAC with Yamaha sometimes to play Tidal MQA tracks.

As expected Focal Arias are overall better for music but I feel Polk S60's produce better soundstage and vocals sound little better on them unlike the slightly recessed nature of Focals. For example Lana Del Rey's voice sounds more intimate and sultry on Polks than on Focals.

Now I am looking to get one more pair of Towers purly for Stereo use. I am torn between SVS Prime Pinnacle and Wharfedale Evo 4.4. Both have many steller reviews but I can't audition them due to prevailing conditions.

I want a pair of towers below Rs.2lakhs that aren't bright but not too laid back to the extent of being boring. I quite like Focal's sound signature especially the ultra clean and sweet treble from it's dome tweeter but wish vocals had touch more presence and had better soundstage. Focals have better bass though. Now coming to Polks, I don't prefer long listening sessions on them as they sound a bit bright overall and resolution of thier tweeters is no match to Focal's. But they aren't fatigue inducing.

I am inclined towards SVS but they cost quite a bit more over Wharfedales. Anyone listened to either of these. Or should I just get one more pair of Focals as they cost less than SVS with onging offers on them.

All opinions and suggestions would be much appreciated. Thanks.
 
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Barun7

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You may also have a look at the following options. All of these fall into the same price bracket(~150K INR). Each pair is well reviewed.
1. KEF Q950
2. Dali Opticon 6
3. Dynaudio Emit M30
 

spirovious

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They are replaced by stage series.
 

Nitin K

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My current setups are a 7.2 HT with Polk S60s/S35 powered by a humble Pioneer VSX LX AVR and a Stereo with Focal Aria 926 powered by Yamaha RN 803 in the living. Both setups have Subs. Both don't have any fancy seperates like DACs and Preamps. But I do use my iFi Micro BL headphone DAC with Yamaha sometimes to play Tidal MQA tracks.

As expected Focal Arias are overall better for music but I feel Polk S60's produce better soundstage and vocals sound little better on them unlike the slightly recessed nature of Focals. For example Lana Del Rey's voice sounds more intimate and sultry on Polks than on Focals.

Now I am looking to get one more pair of Towers purly for Stereo use. I am torn between SVS Prime Pinnacle and Wharfedale Evo 4.4. Both have many steller reviews but I can't audition them due to prevailing conditions.

I want a pair of towers below Rs.2lakhs that aren't bright but not too laid back to the extent of being boring. I quite like Focal's sound signature especially the ultra clean and sweet treble from it's dome tweeter but wish vocals had touch more presence and had better soundstage. Focals have better bass though. Now coming to Polks, I don't prefer long listening sessions on them as they sound a bit bright overall and resolution of thier tweeters is no match to Focal's. But they aren't fatigue inducing.

I am inclined towards SVS but they cost quite a bit more over Wharfedales. Anyone listened to either of these. Or should I just get one more pair of Focals as they cost less than SVS with onging offers on them.

All opinions and suggestions would be much appreciated. Thanks.

Both the SVS and Evo4.4 seem good. You can ask FM Sijusid of his opinion about his EVO 4.2. He may be able to help you on this.
Pls consider Dynaudio too. Better to go for a speaker that gives you the best value for money which may be any one of these good brands.
 

ktks1

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They are replaced by stage series.
They're both clearly different. The studio series 580 and 590 are beasts compared to the A180 and A190. Due to their weight (and maybe some other reasons), they're not sold by JBL directly in India.
 

prateekatasniya

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My current setups are a 7.2 HT with Polk S60s/S35 powered by a humble Pioneer VSX LX AVR and a Stereo with Focal Aria 926 powered by Yamaha RN 803 in the living. Both setups have Subs. Both don't have any fancy seperates like DACs and Preamps. But I do use my iFi Micro BL headphone DAC with Yamaha sometimes to play Tidal MQA tracks.

As expected Focal Arias are overall better for music but I feel Polk S60's produce better soundstage and vocals sound little better on them unlike the slightly recessed nature of Focals. For example Lana Del Rey's voice sounds more intimate and sultry on Polks than on Focals.

Now I am looking to get one more pair of Towers purly for Stereo use. I am torn between SVS Prime Pinnacle and Wharfedale Evo 4.4. Both have many steller reviews but I can't audition them due to prevailing conditions.

I want a pair of towers below Rs.2lakhs that aren't bright but not too laid back to the extent of being boring. I quite like Focal's sound signature especially the ultra clean and sweet treble from it's dome tweeter but wish vocals had touch more presence and had better soundstage. Focals have better bass though. Now coming to Polks, I don't prefer long listening sessions on them as they sound a bit bright overall and resolution of thier tweeters is no match to Focal's. But they aren't fatigue inducing.

I am inclined towards SVS but they cost quite a bit more over Wharfedales. Anyone listened to either of these. Or should I just get one more pair of Focals as they cost less than SVS with onging offers on them.

All opinions and suggestions would be much appreciated. Thanks.
The first thought I got in my mind on looking at your requirement- Revel concerta2 f36

Good luck
:)
 

jarneevan

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Thank you all for suggestions.

Both the SVS and Evo4.4 seem good. You can ask FM Sijusid of his opinion about his EVO 4.2. He may be able to help you on this.
Pls consider Dynaudio too. Better to go for a speaker that gives you the best value for money which may be any one of these good brands.

Certainly. I believe in value for money. I am considering floorstanders that received good reviews from both professional reviewers and end users. Here is my list in the order of current preference,

1. SVS Prime Pinnacle - There isn't even one negative review on them. Lot of overwhelmingly positive reviews.
2. Wharfedale Evo 4.4 - Like SVS, not even one negative review. Tops WhatHifi's recommendation list after the Fyne. Also much cheaper than SVS. But worried that they may be small for my space. Description of my listening space below.
3. Focal Aria 926 - Own a pair already, like them a lot. Wouldn't mind getting one more if others within my budget are not as good.
Nearly 50% discount on their MRP.
4. Dali Opticon 8 - Originally not in my consideration. Unlike above 3, doesn't have five star rating from professional reviewers. Those who own them seem happy though.
5. Fyne Audio F502 - Three of Fyne's floorstanders are in WhatHifi's top 10 recommendation but did't see that level of enthusiasm at end user level. It fits in my budget, could consider them if they are that good.
6. JBL Stage 180/190 - Lot cheaper than others, many positive reviews on their sound quality. They look awful but I can compromise on looks if they sound good.

The sheer size of Opticon 8's tempting me. My primary listening space is about 20ft x 23ft and opens into an L shape floor plan. A large part (20ft x 14ft) of the section marked as Pooja in the attached floor plan has double roof i.e it cuts through second floor to meet glass ceiling on second floor's roof and second floor living opens into that space. Also one side of the listening space has open type staircase running two floors above and a floor below. The opposite side has a large entrance to the balcony with glass doors. So overall there is lot of open space (3000sqft+) for sound waves to disperse. Although it may seem like a acoustic nightmare, the primary listening position doesn't see any reflections as it doesn't have much wall space to reflect sound but creating sound pressure is hard.

I am thinking Opticon 8's with their dual 8" bass, 6.5" mid and dual tweeters would have enough muscle to fill my space with sound. There seem to be quite a bit of polarization when it comes to Dali's sound signature. People seem to either hate them or love them. I don't know which camp I would belong.

I am to open to other speakers within Rs.2 lakhs budget. Some of the speakers in my list have good offers on them. Picking up a top rated speaker that I like at a good price would certainly make my music sound better :) .

Please let me know which one would you pick and for what reason. I know the subject of sound is very subjective but I do believe in collective opinions.

Thanks.
 

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Nitin K

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Hi jarneevan,

You have a very good list of speakers which are difficult to choose from. Honestly speaking I have not heard those floorstanders. Regarding Dali sound, I have the modest Oberon 1 which really sound good for their size & our room size is 14ft length X 11ft width & height. You have a very big room, my preference would have been between the Evo 4.4 & the SVS Pinnacle(don't know the price of it) as both have impressive specs & rave reviews. The Focal Aria may be much more expensive than the rest. Apart from Whathifi reviews, you can get more indepth reviews from Audioholics or Stereophile. Apparently from what I have read , the SVS Pinnacle & Evo do not have an aggressive treble hence would have preferred them for my tastes. But your taste could be different. I have not heard Fyne but they do have a good reputation.

I think Fm RRR has the Opticon 8 as per his post in this thread. I am sure he can give you a better opinion on them. Regarding Evo 4.4, Fm Sijusid would really help you on that since he is very happy with them. The JBL's price seems too good. Since the lockdown has eased, I am sure you could get a demo of Evo 4.4 soon at a dealer. Hope you find the right one for your room.

Regards,

Nitin
 

RRR

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Based on your room size and my experience with the Aria series and Opticon series, i would recommend the Opticon 8.
The Aria 926 is good for a 200 sq ft room.
To compete with the power of the Opticon 8 in a 400 plus sq ft space, i would recommend the Aria 948 but at double your budget.
Have not heard the Evo 4.4 so cant comment.
 
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jarneevan

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Hi jarneevan,
The Focal Aria may be much more expensive than the rest.

Thanks Nitin. Focal Aria 926 is currently available at 50% discount of its MRP.

The first thought I got in my mind on looking at your requirement- Revel concerta2 f36

Good luck
:)
Thanks Prateek. I had a quick look at some reviews of Revel F36. They seem like good speakers and appear to have lot of fan following. I will explore them further.
 

Nitin K

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Thanks Nitin. Focal Aria 926 is currently available at 50% discount of its MRP.
Most welcome, that's a great discount. There is also a model between Aria 926 and 948 to consider if it falls within your budget .
 

jarneevan

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I had put my plan to acquire new speakers on cold storage for few months. I was initially planning to get a speaker pair that can replace Focal Aria 926 in the living and move Arias to the Gym room. But in the past few months I realized that I had been foolish and that I wouldn't be able to easily replace Arias unless I spend significantly more money. Aria's have opened up quite well in the past few months and they sound incredible in my living space. I am truly impressed by their musicality despite being driven by modest RN803. I believe I can get even better sound if I upgrade my electronics. So decided to spend money there.

But that still leaves me with needing a pair for my Gym room. I am currently using a Polk S60 pair taken off from surround-back duties in HT room as temporary arrangement with a newly acquired Denon DRA 800H. I noticed that having a decent audio+video seem to encourage family members to spend more time in the Gym room :)

Max budget 150k. Size of the room is 19x19 with no acoustic treatments whatsoever. I am leaning towards Debut2.0 F6.2 based on all the positive reviews. It comes in half my budget and I could use the remaining cash for some basic acoustic treatment post Coivd, whenever that may be. Other two options are Evo 4.4 and Q950. Is spending twice the amount on Evo 4.4 / Q950 justified over Elac F6.2? Would there be a significant improvement in sound quality over Elac's to justify their prices? I am willing to spend my full budget if speakers in 150k budget can significantly better speakers in 80k range like Elac F6.2, QA 3050i, Dali Zensor/Oberon etc.

I am leaning towards Elac or Evo as I need a slightly laid back pair for my untreated room with Denon as the receiver.

Any suggestions would be welcome. Thanks in advance.
 

DB1989

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I had put my plan to acquire new speakers on cold storage for few months. I was initially planning to get a speaker pair that can replace Focal Aria 926 in the living and move Arias to the Gym room. But in the past few months I realized that I had been foolish and that I wouldn't be able to easily replace Arias unless I spend significantly more money. Aria's have opened up quite well in the past few months and they sound incredible in my living space. I am truly impressed by their musicality despite being driven by modest RN803. I believe I can get even better sound if I upgrade my electronics. So decided to spend money there.

But that still leaves me with needing a pair for my Gym room. I am currently using a Polk S60 pair taken off from surround-back duties in HT room as temporary arrangement with a newly acquired Denon DRA 800H. I noticed that having a decent audio+video seem to encourage family members to spend more time in the Gym room :)

Max budget 150k. Size of the room is 19x19 with no acoustic treatments whatsoever. I am leaning towards Debut2.0 F6.2 based on all the positive reviews. It comes in half my budget and I could use the remaining cash for some basic acoustic treatment post Coivd, whenever that may be. Other two options are Evo 4.4 and Q950. Is spending twice the amount on Evo 4.4 / Q950 justified over Elac F6.2? Would there be a significant improvement in sound quality over Elac's to justify their prices? I am willing to spend my full budget if speakers in 150k budget can significantly better speakers in 80k range like Elac F6.2, QA 3050i, Dali Zensor/Oberon etc.

I am leaning towards Elac or Evo as I need a slightly laid back pair for my untreated room with Denon as the receiver.

Any suggestions would be welcome. Thanks in advance.
Hi! Hifimart is having a stock clearance sale on the Quad S 5s, Castle Avons and Wharfedale Revas. Last time the Quad S5s were on sale, they were going for as low as 1.2L. Now that it is on stock clearance, perhaps ypu can get them for even lower and possibly lesser than 1? The reason why i mentioned them is that I read your thread starter post and noticed that you didn't care much about the vocals on the Aria. The vocals on the Quad are second to none and significantly better than the Evos. So is detail retrieval, resolution and imaging (i'm basing this on a comparison with the Evo 4.2 and not the 4.4). Evo does bass well but i daresay the KEF Q950 will do better (again, based on a comparison of Evo 4.2 with KEF Q350 - Evos have the same amount of bass as the KEF Q350 but the bass in the KEFs is far more detailed and nuanced). Worth a look if you can work out a good deal.
 

jarneevan

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Hi! Hifimart is having a stock clearance sale on the Quad S 5s, Castle Avons and Wharfedale Revas. Last time the Quad S5s were on sale, they were going for as low as 1.2L. Now that it is on stock clearance, perhaps ypu can get them for even lower and possibly lesser than 1?
Thanks. Quad S5's are listed for 138k. I will explore them further. The recommended power rating seem to be lot less than comparable floorstanders. Does it mean they can't get loud? I don't need lot of volume though as my Gym room has several glass doors (entry and a big balcony) and leaks quite a bit of sound.

Edit: Official listing on Quad website shows much higher power rating.
 
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DB1989

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Thanks. Quad S5's are listed for 138k. I will explore them further. The recommended power rating seem to be lot less than comparable floorstanders. Does it mean they can't get loud? I don't need lot of volume though as my Gym room has several glass doors (entry and a big balcony) and leaks quite a bit of sound.

Edit: Official listing on Quad website shows much higher power rating.
Also, don't go on the quoted price. If you check the hifimart banner on the homepage regarding stock clearance, it tells you to call up anil directly for the best deal. Since they have been sold for 1.2L in the past and Anil wants to get rid of them, you can get them for cheaper than 1.2L IMHO. Also, you can ask other FMs about their experience regarding its tonal characteristics and other pros and cons.
 
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