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#406100 - 07/13/14 12:12 PM Re: So NOW I'm a real Axiom owner... [Re: Boomzilla]
exlabdriver Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 09/07/11
Posts: 1065
Boom:

I agree with your assessment of modern tube amps; however, when I researched extensively online wrt to replacement tube choices, there were so many comments on how certain tubes sounded in my my amp, I became quite cynical as to what people were hearing.

I just didn't experience anything like that when I tried different tubes at home...

TAM

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#406101 - 07/13/14 01:30 PM Re: So NOW I'm a real Axiom owner... [Re: exlabdriver]
tomtuttle Offline
axiomite

Registered: 06/20/03
Posts: 8305
Loc: Tacoma
Great post! Thanks so much for sharing your experience.

I can't help but think that having a well treated listening room contributes meaningfully to your enjoyment.

Cheers!
_________________________
bibere usque ad hilaritatem

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#406132 - 07/14/14 08:25 AM Re: So NOW I'm a real Axiom owner... [Re: Boomzilla]
oakvillematt Offline
veteran

Registered: 05/06/14
Posts: 198
Loc: Oakville, Canada
Originally Posted By: Boomzilla

Oakvillematt - I'm not at all surprised that we have different experiences. You seem to be searching for a system that will make all your recordings sound good. I would rather have the unvarnished truth (even if it reveals some of my recordings as poor-sounding). When I want some "glamour" for the less-than-great recordings, I switch my tube buffer into the system. It conceals a multitude of recording sins.


I don't know if I'd say I a looking for speakers to make everything sound good. Its more that I am looking for speakers that will give me the best sound for the music that I like.

I know that some of the recordings that I have will never sound as good as others. Lets face it. The Forgotten Rebels recorded most of their stuff in a basement using a cheep 8 track bought at a garage sale. it will never sound that good, but the gritty bad recording is what makes it so great.

I understand that when the Rolling Stones recorded most of their early stuff, the sound reproduction of hi-fi equipment in the 50's and 60's would mask the limited dynamic range that was recorded. So it is understandable that these needed to be "remastered" A.K.A. re-processed to augment digitally what was never there in the original recordings. If you wanted the originals to sound good, then don't get good speakers.

You are right in suggesting getting a tube pre-amp to warm up the sound and add back in what may have been taken out in compensation for the hardware of that era.

What is sad is that it's becoming more common now for recordings to be compressed to sound good on your ipod/iphone ear buds as that is where the music is mostly being listened on. Are the real hi-fi of today destined to become relics to the slave of convenience.
_________________________
Matt

People are like a box of chocolates. It's hard to tell initially which ones are nuts.

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#406179 - 07/15/14 01:42 PM Re: So NOW I'm a real Axiom owner... [Re: Boomzilla]
CatBrat Offline
axiomite

Registered: 08/05/09
Posts: 5932
Loc: Milky Way Galaxy
So NOW I'm a real boy!


Sorry. Couldn't resist.

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#406188 - 07/15/14 06:19 PM Re: So NOW I'm a real Axiom owner... [Re: Boomzilla]
Boomzilla Offline
buff

Registered: 09/25/13
Posts: 43
Hi exlabdriver - I have no experience with "tube rolling," so I can't comment on it. From what I've read, some components are more sensitive than others.

Hi tomtuttle - YES, the first few absorber pads I installed made a HUGE difference, the rest, far less. Again - If you control slap echo, most other things (except bass resonances) take care of themselves.

Hi Oakvillematt - I agree with you that much current music is compressed for headphone use. I don't know what to do about it, but to select what I like to listen to and hope it's well recorded...

CatBrat - You SLAY me! LOL

I had four friends over this weekend to listen to the Axioms. They wanted to listen at 100 dB plus levels. In my room, at that volume, the Axioms just weren't at their best. One of the guys was a bass head and wanted significantly more bass than my Powersound Audio XV-15 would put out ( ! ). He was also disappointed because the Axioms didn't sound like his Klipsch speakers ( ? ). Another guy was accustomed to listening in a much larger room at live concert levels & was disappointed that the Axioms weren't able to do stadium volumes ( !! ). They all allowed, however, that the M80s sounded "good" in my room.

I don't listen loudly, I don't care if every recording doesn't sound good (I prefer accuracy, thanks), and I don't want to vibrate my fillings out (except occasionally). The Axioms, crossed over the the sub at 80 Hz, are a GOOD match for my room and my preferences. Although they might not have been the first choice of my friends, I think that these ARE the speakers for me!

Boom


Edited by Boomzilla (07/15/14 06:25 PM)

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#406192 - 07/15/14 09:26 PM Re: So NOW I'm a real Axiom owner... [Re: Boomzilla]
oakvillematt Offline
veteran

Registered: 05/06/14
Posts: 198
Loc: Oakville, Canada
Boom, that is such a great story. I know where you are coming from. I had a fellow over as he was interested in listening to my Axioms. He has a set of Paradigm speakers. I was curious to what he thought so I let him listen

He commented that my LFR's didn't have enough bass and the high end was off. Well, after adjusting my receiver eq, bass and treble controls, he concluded that yes the speakers were all right but needed a whole load of adjustment to get them sounding proper. I thought it made everything awful.

Personally I usually listen in pure direct mode as it gives me a nice clean sound.

So over the weekend I went to his house to listen and found his speakers to be rather muddly. Took a look at his pre-amp and found his treble cranked up to 7 and his bass all the way to 10.

Sort of explained his comment to me about my LFR's
_________________________
Matt

People are like a box of chocolates. It's hard to tell initially which ones are nuts.

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#406196 - 07/16/14 02:49 AM Re: So NOW I'm a real Axiom owner... [Re: Boomzilla]
exlabdriver Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 09/07/11
Posts: 1065
Listening preferences are nothing but totally subjective.

This is why I find most of the speaker reviews, assessments & recommendations from the vast majority of users/posters out there are totally irrelevant to me or anyone else.

Boom & Matt - thanks for your experiences with those other listeners. This corroborates my longstanding sentiments exactly...

TAM

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#406201 - 07/16/14 08:16 AM Re: So NOW I'm a real Axiom owner... [Re: Boomzilla]
Boomzilla Offline
buff

Registered: 09/25/13
Posts: 43
Previous speakers that have sounded best in my room include Dahlquist DQ-10s, KEF studio monitors, Thiel 1.5 and 3.6 models, and Klipsch La Scalas (?). My M80s cleave closer to the Thiels, of course, but with the same smoothness of frequency response, and somewhat better dynamics.

Unlike the previous speakers, the M80s are NOT amplifier-sensitive. My old DQ-10s wanted Adcom amps or they had no dynamics, the Thiels would sound tight in the bass only with LARGE McIntosh or Emotiva amplifiers, and the La Scalas sang only with tubes - go figure!

My only criticism (to date) of the M80s is that at very, very high volumes (that I never listen at), the upper midrange (soprano voices) can become slightly shrill. This is not audible at lower volumes, and therefore not a problem for me. I've noticed the high-volume shrillness at that specific frequency range with multiple amplifiers, though, so I'm thinking that it's an artifact of the M80s themselves - not the associated equipment. Since other speakers don't have that problem in my room, the room itself is not the cause, either.

The "new" version 4 tweeters (which I have in my speakers) are noticeably less hard sounding than the version 3 tweeters which my friend has in his M80s, so if Axiom offers those as an upgrade, I'd think them worth the money.

I've got an AV receiver on the way to temporarily replace my current separates. I've never liked (any) AV receiver that I've heard. Their amplifiers are insufficient to adequately power low-impedance speakers. Both pairs of Thiels, some Magnepan 1.6s, and my current M80s are all four-ohm loads and/or difficult to drive because of crossover complexities. This Yamaha may surprise me, or not...

In any case, I'll continue to occasionally post about my M80s if I have anything new to say. Feel free to ignore my posts as you see fit.

Cordially - Boomzilla

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#407120 - 09/10/14 12:07 PM Re: So NOW I'm a real Axiom owner... [Re: Boomzilla]
Boomzilla Offline
buff

Registered: 09/25/13
Posts: 43
And just as an aside, I recently tried my Axiom M80s with a variety of preamps and power amps including:

Audio Research LS2B MKII tube/FET preamp
Musical Fidelity X-Cans 3 tube headphone/pre amp
Yaqin SD-CD3 tube buffer

and

Audio Research D90 tube power amp
Crown XLS-2000 power amps (used as both stereo & mono)
Emotiva XPA-5 solid-state power amp

Each combo offered its own advantages and disadvantages, but ultimately, the combo that sounded best with my M80s in my room was the Yaqin tube buffer driving two channels of the Emotiva XPA-5.

Now I've added an Emotiva center channel & I'll see how they all do on movie sound!

By the bye, in my particular room, the M80s (not the high powered - just the standard ones) do NOT supply satisfactory bass. If I had some "tone controls," this might be fixable but without them, the speakers are bass shy. It doesn't matter to me because I run the M80s in "small" mode from my Oppo BDP-105 with the below-80-Hz sounds supplied by a PowerSound Audio XV-15 subwoofer. That blends perfectly with the M80s and the combo is ideal for music and impressive on movies.

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#407156 - 09/12/14 07:58 AM Re: So NOW I'm a real Axiom owner... [Re: Boomzilla]
Murph Offline
axiomite

Registered: 10/05/06
Posts: 6884
Loc: PEI, Canada
Thanks for keeping us updated Boom. Interesting stuff.

Curious.
Is it fair to say the M80s are "bass shy". They were certainly not designed to compete with a subwoofer for deep LFE frequencies. Depends what previous models you are comparing to I guess. There are some floor model speakers that attempt to do both functions, but an M80 is not one of them.

While not 80s, I've heard some impressive bass for thier size out of M60s in large mode for my casual stereo setup upstairs. In the HT room, I have another pair with a good sub and run them as small to get the full effect for movies and super bass heavy tunes, as per thier intended design.
_________________________
With great power comes Awesome irresponsibility.

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