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#160850 - 03/06/07 09:02 PM Gave my first audition tonight
nickbuol Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 09/16/04
Posts: 4440
Loc: Marion, IA
I just spent the last 90 minutes with blobula (Ethan) at my house. I wasn't sure what to demo, but I told him to bring some music and DVDs. I think that I gave a pretty good demo, and gave just my personal experience and factual information. I encouraged him to ask questions here about what he heard and I told him to be honest. If he bashes me or my setup, I won't be offended. I just hope that I did Axiom justice. I demo'd my M60 fronts, VP150 center, QS8 surrounds, SVS PCi 20-39 (with a good plug for the Axiom 500 sub) powered by my Pioneer Elite VSX-54TX, with my Panasonic S97 for CD/DVD playback.
_________________________
http://ht.buol.us
M60s, VP180, VP150, QS8s, SVS 20-39PCi, HTPC, JVC RS45, Onkyo TX-NR709, Shakers

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#160851 - 03/06/07 09:07 PM Re: Gave my first audition tonight [Re: nickbuol]
St_PatGuy Offline
axiomite

Registered: 03/07/05
Posts: 7400
Loc: Glendale, Arizona
Very cool, Nick. Hopefully Ethan will be along shortly with questions/impressions. Maybe he can provide a detailed floorplan of your house and an exact location of those M60s. . .

Uh, completely off topic, but what is your work schedule again?


_________________________
***********
"Nothin' up my sleeve. . ." --Bullwinkle J. Moose

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#160852 - 03/06/07 09:37 PM Re: Gave my first audition tonight [Re: St_PatGuy]
nickbuol Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 09/16/04
Posts: 4440
Loc: Marion, IA
Yeah, that is like when I told a co-worker when my Axioms were shipped. He kept claiming that he was going to take off work so that he could "keep an eye out to make sure that nobody stole my speakers." Needless to say, I had them set for me to pick up at FedEx instead of them delivering them to my door.
_________________________
http://ht.buol.us
M60s, VP180, VP150, QS8s, SVS 20-39PCi, HTPC, JVC RS45, Onkyo TX-NR709, Shakers

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#160853 - 03/07/07 09:43 AM Re: Gave my first audition tonight [Re: nickbuol]
blobula Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 12/09/06
Posts: 30
Loc: Iowa
My thanks to Nick once again for allowing me to listen to his setup. He did a great job of explaining what he knew about the speakers and his experience with them. Also letting me know it's ultimately up to me which brand of speakers sound best to me, and not to feel forced to by Axioms.

The system I currently have is a $400 Sony 5.1 HTIB. So basically any speakers of the magnitude I'm looking into will blow it away.

The room I listened to them in was about 8 x 15. Of course Nick would know the exact dimensions. The room my speakers will be going into is 12 x 23 x 7 so sound wise not sure if that would make much of a difference. We started off the audition by listening to some music I had brought with me. The cd contained a variety of music ranging from Rock, Pop, Instrumental, Classical and Gospel. I really wasn't sure what music to audition a system with. One track that stood out to me was 'Breaking Benjamin - Diary of Jane'. It's a pretty heavy song with lots of heavy guitar and the speakers really sounded clear and distinct, even at very high levels! The music tracks I had brought were burned from my music on iTunes so the recordings may not have been top notch. Nick explained that more often than not it's not the speakers that sound bad, but the recording of the song.

All in all I was very impressed by the clarity and pleasant sound from the speakers. The sound wasn't overbearing or bright that would make my head or ears ache.

Next we moved onto movies. 80% of the speakers use will be for movies so I was anxious to hear how they sounded with a lot of action taking place.

Some of the dvd's I brought with me were Gladiator, Drumline and Master and Commander. The most impressive clip to me was the opening scene from Master and Commander. At the beginning there are a lot of creaks, thumps, water hitting the boat, sails flapping, sailor talking and yelling etc... it almost felt like I was in the ship. I was very impressed by that scene and how well the speakers handled it. After a few minutes the battle heated up with cannon balls flying by, explosions and wood splintering. The speakers performance was outstanding, especially the M60's and VP150. The sub wasn't on loud so most if not all the sound was from the 5 speakers. I'm sure with an EP500 kicked in that experience would be even more jaw dropping.

I listened to the ending scene in Drumline were the two drum lines are competing. This was mostly for listening to the M60's. The crack of the toms, snares, and bass drums was very impressive. Although the recording on this dvd was not that good. I think we had it up to -5db or so and it still wasn't that loud. Nick said -18db is usually the highest he'll ever need to go.

My last scene was the opening from Gladiator and the big battle between the Romans and the Barbarians. It sounded good, but I wasn't as impressed with this one as with the Master and Commendar scene. I think the performance of the QS8's in this scene wasn't up to what I was expecting. I cover this in my next paragraph.

My overall impressions are that the M60's are definitely an awesome pair of speakers. I listened to some Klipsch RF-82 and RF-63 speakers and the M60's sound better IMHO. More immersive and enveloping. The VP150 was very impressive as well. Even with all the action taking place in the opening scene you could still hear the dialogue very clearly and distinctly. I think my only question is about the QS8's. I've heard these are awesome speakers, however I didn't come away thinking that they were amazing. As I said earlier in the opening scene it felt like I was in the ship that I'm sure was some of the work of the QS8's which was impressive, but when it came to things flying by or moving from the front to back, I wasn't amazed. Perhaps it might've been the content, I wasn't focusing on them enough, or my expectations were way to high. I was expecting when something flew by that it would feel like it just whizzed by my ear and I'd have to dodge out of the way. I'd appreciate your thoughts.

Nicks system is awesome though, and when he gets the room completely finished it will be even more amazing. I will be going with Axiom though, I really liked the sound and the aesthetic looks of them.

Thanks for reading, I'm not that great at writing reviews.

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#160854 - 03/07/07 10:58 AM Re: Gave my first audition tonight [Re: blobula]
nickbuol Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 09/16/04
Posts: 4440
Loc: Marion, IA
One comment about the opening scene in Gladiator. I agree that it doesn't envelope you in sound quite like Master and Commander did, but that shows that the speakers are fine, but the DVD mix just doesn't put the sound back there as much. It would also help if my QS8s were about 18 inched further back, but with my back wall there, it isn't possible, but again, I would put more of it on the Gladiator mix. I should have thrown in Saving Private Ryan (DTS) for a few minutes of the opening beach battle scene. Bullets are whizzing by very distinctly in that one.

Also, if you wanted more bass, you should have just asked, man. I like cranking up the sub!

No, it actually was probably best to leave the sub turned down a little so that you could focus on the Axioms. Axiom's 500 series sub will completely rock, so no worries there.

Thanks for coming over and the kind comments. I completely forgot that I made a batch of popcorn once we got going. Needless to say, the kids chowed down on it after you left.
_________________________
http://ht.buol.us
M60s, VP180, VP150, QS8s, SVS 20-39PCi, HTPC, JVC RS45, Onkyo TX-NR709, Shakers

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#160855 - 03/07/07 11:31 AM Re: Gave my first audition tonight [Re: nickbuol]
blobula Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 12/09/06
Posts: 30
Loc: Iowa
That's what I sorta was thinking afterwards. The content in Gladiator prolly wasn't suited to really show off the capabilities of the QS8's.

My bad should've had you crank the sub, but you're right I'd have prolly ended up focusing on the bass more than the speakers.

I order some finish samples a couple days ago. I think the Black Oak is the best choice for the room.

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#160856 - 03/07/07 11:46 AM Re: Gave my first audition tonight [Re: blobula]
Hutzal Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/26/06
Posts: 2102
Loc: Hollywood. (Canadian @ <3)
>>That's what I sorta was thinking afterwards. The content in Gladiator prolly wasn't suited to really show off the capabilities of the QS8's.

I think that the fight scene in the ring with Maximus and the "Undefeted Glatiator" provides a great "all around" demo with the tigers in the surrounds, the bass from the tigers roars.

Another great demo is the Opening battle scene from Master and Commander, wood splinters flying all over the place, footsteps all around you, and those cannon shots really pump the EP500 down to ultra low levels.

Just bought that movie last week for $9.99, I have been hearing over and over again how wicked it is for demoing subs, I had no idea until the cannons started to fire
_________________________
Producer | Composer
www.robbhutzal.com

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#160857 - 03/07/07 12:19 PM Re: Gave my first audition tonight [Re: Hutzal]
blobula Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 12/09/06
Posts: 30
Loc: Iowa
I totally agree with you about Master and Commander. We listened to that scene as well. It just envelopes you in everything that is going on inside the boat.

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#160858 - 03/07/07 02:06 PM Re: Gave my first audition tonight [Re: blobula]
real80sman Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 05/16/02
Posts: 1123
Loc: Ontario, Canada
I think the issue may be the direct radiating surrounds in your current HTIB. (And the fact that you may be running them a little too loud.) You're used to hearing everything as a "hard" pan from the back that can be easily localized. This does provide a "wow" factor, but things such as rain or birds singing are not supposed to come from a single spot.

When I first switched from a set of 6x9 surrounds to the QS8's, I was disappointed. They didn't seem to "light up" like the 6x9's did. After a while, I began to realize how much better overall the 8's actually were. (especially with "soft" pans and and ambient sounds.)
_________________________
Shawn

Epic 80/600 + M3's + Custom Finish Algonquin V3's

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#160859 - 03/07/07 06:27 PM Re: Gave my first audition tonight [Re: nickbuol]
Cintel7 Offline
frequent flier

Registered: 01/06/07
Posts: 11
Loc: Murrieta, CA
Quote:

I should have thrown in Saving Private Ryan (DTS) for a few minutes of the opening beach battle scene. Bullets are whizzing by very distinctly in that one.





After watching the first scene of that movie, I felt sad for the men/women have sacrificed that day.

IMHO: Surrounds sound should not "jump" or "light" up at you, but rather diffuse the sound enough to fill your rears and sides in a subtle manner. Diffusion of sound doesn't mean the sound is not crisp and clear. I have hooked up the M22s as sourrounds but found the QS4 is better served as sourrounds since the M22s sound localized to me.

If you like your surrounds to "jump" or "light" up, you can always use regular speakers.

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