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#129166 - 02/20/06 07:58 PM Wharfedale Opus 2
michael_d Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 3904
Loc: Up yonder
Has anyone ever heard Wharfendale Opus 2ís?? Bit out of my price range, but damn they sure are good looking speakers. And if they sound as good as they look, I might just have to heat up my credit card.


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#129167 - 02/20/06 08:41 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
bray Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 06/10/04
Posts: 1792
Loc: Colorado
Wow!
Those are pretty.
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#129168 - 02/21/06 12:22 AM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
bridgman Offline
axiomite

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 5408
Loc: Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada
I have seen some good reviews of the Wharfedale Diamonds, but nothing on the Opus. Interesting midrange -- a 3 inch dome !

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#129169 - 02/21/06 12:34 AM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
Tharkun Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 01/05/05
Posts: 1039
Loc: Tracy, California
Are you able to audition a pair in the area, or just by them and be happy ?
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#129170 - 02/21/06 07:45 AM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
bray Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 06/10/04
Posts: 1792
Loc: Colorado
From what I've read, they have been discontinued.
Could be wrong though.
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#129171 - 02/21/06 11:01 AM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
Tharkun Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 01/05/05
Posts: 1039
Loc: Tracy, California
Maybe we read the same info but from what I read it was just the standard Maple finish.
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#129172 - 02/21/06 11:12 AM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
Wid Offline
axiomite

Registered: 06/22/03
Posts: 6720
Loc: The Peoples Republic of Il.

They are listed on the Warfedale website
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"A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity." Sigmund Freud


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#129173 - 02/21/06 11:15 AM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
michael_d Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 3904
Loc: Up yonder
No, I do not have an opportunity to audition a set, thatís why I asked the question here. I bet Alan or someone else has. On my quest to find the perfect speaker for my budget limited two channel system (quite an oxymoron eh?), someone recommended that I look at Wharfendale at Audiohalics (recommended that I look at the Pacific line). The Opus is Wharfendaleís premium line. They have an Opus 1, 2 and 3. They are all based on the same platform, but with progressively larger bass drivers. The 1ís have a single 8Ē, the 2 has two 8Ē drivers and the 3 has two 10Ē drivers. The 3ís are simply too large for my tastes. The Opus line is all hand crafted and built in the UK, and sold in matched pairs. They even test the drivers as pairs that the set will receive. Retail on the 2ís is $3000, and the 3ís are $3500. The 1ís can be had for $1500, but I doubt Iíd be happy with them seeing how they only have one 8Ē bass driver. Seeing how they are all hand assembled and finished, $3000 doesnít seam to be out of line considering similar speakers sell for upwards of $10,000. But, if they sound like crap it, itís still a waste of money.

www.wharfedale.co.uk/range.php?range_id=1
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#129174 - 02/21/06 12:09 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
RickF Offline
axiomite

Registered: 02/26/05
Posts: 5210
Loc: Vero Beach, Florida
Hey Mike I listened to a pair of Induction Dynamics S1Ts this morning that sounded pretty darn good ... a wee bit pricey ($5,200) for me but they sounded good nonetheless.

I ain't giving up my Axioms any time soon.
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Our Room

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#129175 - 02/21/06 12:17 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
littleb Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 08/03/03
Posts: 1235
Loc: Moorhead, Minnesota/US
This is just my 2 cents, but I think the Evo's look nicer. They are probably a bit less. They do look like B&W knock offs, though.

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#129176 - 02/21/06 01:22 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
danmagicman7 Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 12/16/05
Posts: 1467
Man, there are way too many loudspeaker manufacturers out there.
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#129177 - 02/21/06 01:26 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
littleb Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 08/03/03
Posts: 1235
Loc: Moorhead, Minnesota/US
Yeah, it's almost like a pizza parlour mentality. Every town these days seems to have 20 of those buggers.

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#129178 - 02/21/06 01:37 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
danmagicman7 Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 12/16/05
Posts: 1467
I also am realizing how much many of these "hi fi" speaker company's websites...suck. They are so hard to navigate and confusing. "Whats the difference between your bluebird line and your cardinal line" Pictures really small, navigation all funky. The axiom website, on the other hand, is probably one of the most intuitive websites i've been on. All of the products have a nice image, everything is laid out nicely so you don't have to click around 50 times on the website to acutally get a grasp of what the whole company has to offer.

I design a couple websites on the side so I guess I can be quite passionate when I see people doing a bad job on an obvious high-budget website. At least Axiom did an excellent job.

Anyways...
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#129179 - 02/21/06 01:44 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
pmbuko Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 04/02/03
Posts: 16274
Loc: Leesburg, Virginia
I think the problem with some websites is that they're using templates developed in the 90s. It also speaks to who their target audiences are. If you do most of your business online, you're going to be damn sure your website is easy to use.
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#129180 - 02/21/06 01:50 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
Ken.C Online   content
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 17775
Loc: NoVA
I've had the same experience. Lots of flash, little content. Very irritating.
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#129181 - 02/21/06 04:30 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
michael_d Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 3904
Loc: Up yonder
My 80ís are going to the HT room shortly, so I need another set of towers for the two channel system. This time I want real wood veneer. So, I either buy anther set of 80ís with wood veneer when they come out, or I look around a bit. Iím looking around. And yes, there are simply hundreds of different manufactures out there. The only things I have around my neck of the woods to audition are B&W, Paradigm, Boston Acoustics, McIntosh, Polk and Infinity.

Out of all of those brands, the Paradigm studio 100ís are my favorite (besides some $8000 McIntosh speakers). Iím guessing the wood Axiom 80ís will be between $1500 - $2000, so I might as well look and see what else is out there. About half my CDís are poorly recorded rock CDís and I get fatigued listening to them on the 80ís. So Iím just wandering around the net reading reviews and asking questions. So far, itís hard to find a speaker with the same build quality and performance of the M80ís in the < $2000 price point. I just wish there was an intuitive speaker that could automatically sense a sibilant recording and alter the X-over to compensate.

Iíll probably just get another set of M80ís, but it doesnít hurt to lookÖÖ..

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#129182 - 02/21/06 05:53 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
danmagicman7 Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 12/16/05
Posts: 1467
Man, I'm going to get sucked into Hi-Fi for the rest of my life, arn't I.
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M22s|VP100|QS4s|HSU STF2

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#129183 - 02/21/06 09:44 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
warfer21 Offline
veteran

Registered: 10/14/04
Posts: 139
Loc: T. Bay , ON
Interesting! I was just checking out (online) the opus line for my new 2-channel system. Definitely won't be able to audition them here. I agree, that they sure look nice! Because I already have good speakers in my HT, I can take my time and audition, even if it means taking a road trip.
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#129184 - 02/21/06 09:49 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
warfer21 Offline
veteran

Registered: 10/14/04
Posts: 139
Loc: T. Bay , ON
"Man, I'm going to get sucked into Hi-Fi for the rest of my life, arn't I."

it's futile to resist... only the WAF will fight it
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#129185 - 02/21/06 10:43 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
michael_d Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 3904
Loc: Up yonder
Crap, I just got a quote for the Opus 3ísÖÖ.$2495 plus $400 shipping. Or, the Opus 1ís for $1495 plush shipping. Both brand new, sealed in the box from an authorized dealer. Five year warrantee on both. They sold out the 2ís.

IÖÖÖ..canÖÖÖÖ.resistÖÖÖÖ

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#129186 - 02/22/06 12:43 AM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
danmagicman7 Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 12/16/05
Posts: 1467
"it's futile to resist... only the WAF will fight it"

Yea, being a freshman in college I have a few more years before that.

This hi-fi stuff is so addicting. My good friend is coming in my room, and I was looking at some of the brands mdrew posted, was on the McIntosh website, and saying how cool they were, then looking at some Dynaudio self-powered near field monitors (because I'm always going to listen to music at my desk). One had a 10 inch woofer in it, that I was like "woah that would be cool to have." Then I was looking at some brands people over at AVS suggested after I sort of trolled a thread, saying I was interested in the best bookshelves available. Anyways, I was looking at all these brands, clicking around reviews, getting sucked into tube amps, hi fi speaker options and etc...

Anyways, my friend goes,

"Dude, you ALREADY spent a ridiculous amount of money on speakers for a COLLEGE student...and you are looking at getting more?"

"Um...well, I'm not looking at getting more, just looking"

"I know how these things work, you look, see what things you can barely afford, think about it some more, then look at how good they are, then get them...then the cycle continues."

"Oh"

Yea, this is going to be a life addiction. Hmmph. I guess I should get into a much better listening environment before even thinking about upgrading .
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#129187 - 02/22/06 09:37 AM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
pmbuko Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 04/02/03
Posts: 16274
Loc: Leesburg, Virginia
In reply to:

My good friend is coming in my room


TMI, dude. TMI...
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#129188 - 02/22/06 09:41 AM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
Wid Offline
axiomite

Registered: 06/22/03
Posts: 6720
Loc: The Peoples Republic of Il.

That's just plain wrong
_________________________
Rick


"A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity." Sigmund Freud


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#129189 - 02/22/06 12:14 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
danmagicman7 Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 12/16/05
Posts: 1467
I'm pretty sure that one flew over my head...TMI?

Yea, that sounded funny...um...yea. I say akward stuff a lot in real life as well.

Let me edit that. "My friend entered my room" There...better?
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#129190 - 02/22/06 12:20 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
Tharkun Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 01/05/05
Posts: 1039
Loc: Tracy, California
TMI = Too Much Information ( I think that is what Peter was saying)
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#129191 - 03/06/06 01:47 AM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
DOUBTINGTHOMAS29 Offline
veteran

Registered: 11/12/04
Posts: 164
I have heard the Wharfedale Evolution speakers (300 and 400's) and really enjoyed the sound. They offer a very different sound (British sound) compared to the Axiom's. They look fantastic and as I've said sounded quite good. If I had to choose between the two I'd pick the Evo-300.

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#129192 - 03/06/06 12:45 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
michael_d Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 3904
Loc: Up yonder
And what exactly is a "British" sound?
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#129193 - 03/06/06 02:13 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
Rock_Head Offline
aficionado

Registered: 10/10/04
Posts: 870
Loc: Delta, BC, Canada
Re: And what exactly is a "British" sound?

English accent........ :-)

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#129194 - 03/06/06 10:06 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
bridgman Offline
axiomite

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 5408
Loc: Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada
>>And what exactly is a "British" sound?

Do a search on "BBC dip" and that will give you part of it -- a few dB drop in the 3-5 KHz range that makes speakers sound "smoother" although less detailed. The other part of the "British sound" seems to require sort of "your characteristic soft-dome tweeter sound" if such a thing exists. I'm not sure there is a "soft dome tweeter sound" but certainly all of the "classic" British speakers seemed to either have silk or thin mylar tweeter domes.

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#129195 - 03/06/06 11:36 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
DOUBTINGTHOMAS29 Offline
veteran

Registered: 11/12/04
Posts: 164
Thanks bridgman.

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#129196 - 03/06/06 11:52 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
michael_d Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 3904
Loc: Up yonder
Well I should be able to speak to this Ďdifferenceí in a couple weeks or so cause I bought a set.

I got to talking on the phone with a fella who has a set and he told me they are a very detailed speaker. He was also telling me that a buddy of his has a set of Wilson speakers and he brings his CDís over to his house to listen to them as he prefers the Opus over his Wilsons. I have no idea what a Wilson speaker goes for, or anything about them but theyíre apparently some pretty spendy speakers.
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#129197 - 03/07/06 09:59 AM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
Ken.C Online   content
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 17775
Loc: NoVA
So much that you won't be able to find prices online! Think 5 figures.
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#129198 - 03/07/06 12:27 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
davidsch Offline
aficionado

Registered: 06/02/03
Posts: 678
Loc: Houston, Texas
Used Wilsons are sometimes on sale at Audiogon for five figures. They have quite a reputation. That is high praise indeed for Opus to be compared to Wilson speakers. Let us know what you think.

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#129199 - 03/08/06 12:53 AM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
DOUBTINGTHOMAS29 Offline
veteran

Registered: 11/12/04
Posts: 164
mdrew, you will definitely hear a difference between your Axiom's and the Wharfedale's. Your friend choosing the sound of his Wharfedale's over the Wilson's does not surprise me as everyone I know who has heard them say they are very overrated speakers. Looking forward to hearing what you like/dislike about them.

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#129200 - 03/16/06 12:21 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
michael_d Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 3904
Loc: Up yonder
The Opus 2ís showed up yesterday. Iím still doing some back to back listening with them and the M80ís trying to figure out what the differences are. In a blind test I honestly donít think I could pick a winner. While both are different in their own respects, they both sound so damn good that if Ďsoundí was the only factor involved, Iíd have one heck of a time decided which to take home. Well Iíve got both, so I donít have to make that choiceÖ..LOL.

I frequently see where Axiom speakers are referred to as ďbargain speakersĒ and that you get a lot of speaker for the price. While this is true, I think folks get too hung up on that. The simple fact is, they are great speakers that can compete with all the big dogs and come out winners most of the time. Hereís just one more attest to that. The Opus 2ís have a list price anywhere between $5500 and $3000 (US $). I know, whatís a list price when it has a range? Reason being, is that there are not that many dealers who carry this line from Wharfedale and those that do carry it, charge whatever the hell they want to charge. The lowest Ďlist' price I was able to find was $2999.

Without going into a long rambling description that no one would be able to understand, Iíll just some up my impressions.

The M80ís arenít really any more Ďdetailedí as the Opus, but different. The M80ís just seam to be Ďsharperí or maybe Ďmetallicí is the word Iím looking for. Donít really know how else to call it. The Opus highs are very detailed as well, but they donít seam to cut as deep. At high volumes (over 95 dbís) the M80ís start to hurt me some. Iíve had the Opus over 100 dbís without that same feeling of pain.

My favorite thing about the M80ís is their mid range. What can I say about that???? Itís perfect. Iíve heard all the Paradigm series (including their refís), Iíve heard B&Wís 600, 700 and Nautilus speakers and I prefer the M80ís midís over all of them. The Opus 2ís are every bit as good as the M80ís. Iím having a hell of time trying to figure out what might be different, and am coming up with nothing. They are both excellent.

The low end bass between the two is where the biggest difference is. The M80ís get on down there and are quite deceiving for their size. On paper they also look very impressive. The Opus 2ís have more. Lotís more. Not to say better, but just more. Iíve been running the M80ís with the Rotelís tone control on L1 for the past year because well, I just like it there. The L1 setting adds 1.5 db to the LFís. I like the Opus 2ís with the 1070 set to flat (so far, but I think I like it on the H1 setting). The H1 setting adds a bit of treble and I couldn't stand the M80's with it at this position. I must have a preference for highly detailed speakers....?

Both speakers play louder than any sane individual would ever want them to play. The M80ís will go louder though. Donít know how much that is, but they are definitely more efficient. Where before Iíd have the M80ís playing with the volume control knob about 10 oíclock most of the time, with the Opus 2ís, Itís closer to 12 oíclock. Playing around with the volume and seeing Ďhow high can they goí, Iíve had the knob further toward max than ever before with the M80ís.

The Opus 2ís come with their own impedance and frequency response graphs for each speaker. They are built as pairs and tested to ensure that they are identical. I donít know what to look for with these things, but I know a lot of you do. Hereís a pic of one of them.



Here's a couple more pics. The piano finish is quite impressive. The pictures suck compared to seeing these things up close. I need to re-finish my hardwood floors, but now it's like a slap in the face. I REALLY need to re-finish them now.......






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#129201 - 03/16/06 12:27 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
HomeDad Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 12/29/05
Posts: 3301
Loc: Central,California
Those are some beautiful speakers, Wow. Great room also, congrats on the purchase.
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#129202 - 03/16/06 12:51 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
St_PatGuy Offline
axiomite

Registered: 03/07/05
Posts: 7403
Loc: Glendale, Arizona
Those are some nice looking speakers, Mike. Happy listening!
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#129203 - 03/20/06 08:41 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
warfer21 Offline
veteran

Registered: 10/14/04
Posts: 139
Loc: T. Bay , ON
Wow! Mike those are truly impressive!!! congrats and thanks for the write-up.

I'm leaning toward the "british" sound for my music only system.
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#129204 - 03/20/06 09:23 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
michael_d Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 3904
Loc: Up yonder
The pics really donít do them any justice. They make me pause every time I walk in the room. I suspect the rosewood are stunning. To bad I couldnít get a setÖ..oh well, the high gloss EP 600 should go well with them when I get around to ordering one.

The more I listen to these things, the more I like them (and I already liked them allot). Still donít really have a preference between the Opus and M80ís though. Sometimes I just get the itch to hear a CD on the M80ís, so I take it to that system and sit for a spell.

Iíve come to the conclusion that the Opusís do have a lower treble output than the M80ís. I used to leave the tone controls on the Rotel pre / pro at the L1 positions ( + 1.5 db LF ). I would never, never set it to the H1 positions ( +3 db HF ) because it was simply too much treble. I find that I like the Opusís set to the H1 position. They are quite detailed, but just a bit Ďsmootherí. I Ďthinkí I prefer this, but there are times when I miss the sharpness of the M80ís treble. Other than that, itís quite difficult to tell much a difference. Well I take that backÖ..the Opusís have more low end bass. The mids are damn near identical.

This is just one more attest to how good the M80ís sound. I think folks see what they cost and come to the conclusion that they couldnít possibly compete with more expensive speakers. That assumption couldnít be further from the truth.

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#129205 - 03/21/06 03:13 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
RickF Offline
axiomite

Registered: 02/26/05
Posts: 5210
Loc: Vero Beach, Florida
Those are some very nice looking speakers Mike, I really, really like the black gloss finish ... very classy looking IMO. Thanks for sharing your honest opinions regarding the two brands of speakers. Coming from you, I know I can take the information to the bank.

Have fun with 'em brother!
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Rick
Our Room

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#129206 - 03/21/06 04:09 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
HomeDad Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 12/29/05
Posts: 3301
Loc: Central,California
Mike, it's great to hear a review from someone who actually owns the Axioms and another great speaker. I'm tired of reading reviews on places like AVS, where they have never heard the 80's but have no problem comparing them unfavorably to their brands. Thanks.
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#129207 - 03/21/06 04:48 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
Spoiler Offline
aficionado

Registered: 01/03/06
Posts: 680
Loc: South Florida
I for one can say it's comforting to have my thoughts comfirmed by another Axiom owner doing a fair comparison to speakers costing up to $5500... and coming out favorably! I love how the Axiom tweeters sing as they do, but yet I hear almost no hiss during soft passages.. unlike the Emit tweeters on my Infinity Kappa 8's.


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Denon 3805 / M2200 Outlaw Monos /
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#129208 - 03/24/06 04:47 AM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
KC_Mike Offline
local

Registered: 01/11/03
Posts: 209
Loc: KS
I purchased an Evo system over a year ago here in town and listened to the Opus 2's at that time. I actually preferred the Evo's over the Opus. The Opus 2's were in Rosewood and on closeout for $1200 since they were discontinued. I just checked the website and they don't have the towers anymore; but they still have an Opus center channel on closeout for $699. Not sure if it's rosewood or the piano black. www.soundfxkc.com

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#129209 - 03/24/06 12:55 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
bugbitten Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 04/06/05
Posts: 2339
Loc: Madisonville, KY

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#129210 - 03/25/06 10:37 AM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
michael_d Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 3904
Loc: Up yonder
$1200 for a set of Opus 2's?? ...........I feel like I've been violated.

Why did you prefer the Evo's?
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#129211 - 04/07/06 10:16 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
KC_Mike Offline
local

Registered: 01/11/03
Posts: 209
Loc: KS
Not sure how to put it into words. They sounded very different from one another and I simply preferred the Evo's.

Sure, the Opus towers pounded out the bass; but who needs that if you have a good sub. I actually came close to getting the Opus towers instead of the Evo 30's; but at the time they only had the towers and center channel on closeout....no surrounds. I would have had to buy the surrounds at the normal negotiated price; which probably would have been 15-20% under MSRP. That was another factor.

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