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#399375 - 12/18/13 10:52 PM Comparing M80's to Klipsch Heresy
D_Rick Offline
frequent flier

Registered: 12/18/13
Posts: 13
Loc: British Columbia
So, after ways too many years of listening to a Lousy amplifier, I decided to upgrade to a new system - got my hands on a nice Odyssey Stratos amp and am going to upgrade to M80 high powereds.

Don't have the M80's yet, so hooked the Odyssey up to my ancient Klipsch Heresy's (original version) - and immediately was pleasantly surprised to hear what a decent Amp did to the Klipsch's.

So, my question - are there any Former Klipsch owners out there that can tell me what difference I can expect to hear with the M80's?


#399386 - 12/19/13 08:14 AM Re: Comparing M80's to Klipsch Heresy [Re: D_Rick]
Murph Offline

Registered: 10/05/06
Posts: 6955
Loc: PEI, Canada
I know every Klipsh model is not the same but I had an old room mate with a huge set of Klipsh speakers.

I own M60s, not M80s but I think you will find that there is going to be an adjustment period when you need to get used to the fact that you won't have the horn based tweeters (excuse me but I'm going to say) "over"emphasizing the treble. I have always found horn tweeters to be much too bright and my ears quickly get annoyed or tired or something if they are played too long.

I think you will be very happy the M80s but you may need some time to adjust and get used to the new sound style. But that probably goes for any major speaker switch.

Rereading, I sound kind of negative. That was not my intent. I just wanted to let you know that there is always that period where unless you are trained to hear and compare speakers objectively, most of us will find our brains negatively interpret a 'new' sound until some time passes.

I probably should have found a way to express that better without adding in my personal opinion on horn tweeters.

Edited by Murph (12/19/13 08:28 AM)
Edit Reason: messaging
With great power comes Awesome irresponsibility.

#399387 - 12/19/13 09:08 AM Re: Comparing M80's to Klipsch Heresy [Re: D_Rick]
nickbuol Offline

Registered: 09/16/04
Posts: 5377
Loc: Marion, IA
I am like you Murph, in a quick demo, the Klipsch horn based speakers sound "crisp" but I quickly become annoyed with those horn tweeters. Maybe I've just become more critical in my listening over the years.

Oh, and the last time I listened to Klipsch and "enjoyed" them per se, was back before I owned Axioms. I went from a "collection" of cheap KLH speakers in v1.0 of my home theater to listening to the Klispch speakers, to doing some auditioning of speakers, to not liking the Klipsch and to settling on Axioms. I've had the Axioms for v2.0, v3.0 (where I was given an opportunity to sell the speakers when we sold that house, but didn't) and not again in v4.0.

I have the M60s as well, but have heard what the M80s can do (courtesy of SirQuack from these forums) and they are impressive.

So not that I have a lot of great side-by-side comparison information at all, but just some ramblings about enjoying how a flat and even the frequency response sounds really good.

Now some people like the over-the-top horn tweeter, but you will find a lot of things on the web of people saying how fatiguing the Klipsch are at even reasonable volumes for any length of time. That is what turned be away form them, and that was well before I settled on Axiom.
2-M60s, VP180, 8-M3s, SVS 20-39PCi, DIY Sub, 8-Shakers, JVC RS45, Anthem MRX-1120

#399389 - 12/19/13 12:08 PM Re: Comparing M80's to Klipsch Heresy [Re: D_Rick]
alan Offline


Registered: 01/29/02
Posts: 3267
Loc: Toronto/New York/parry Sound
Hi D Rick,

Much of what Nickb and Murph say is quite accurate. I have done double-blind tests of older Klipsch speakers, including the old Heresy, compared with non-horn-loaded more neutral speakers like Axioms and some other Canadian brands during the time I was editor of Sound Canada magazine.

You'll find the M80s are exceedingly "neutral" compared to the Klipsch's. By neutral, I mean that the frequency response of the M80 doesn't overemphasize or de-emphasize any octave of the musical spectrum.

Klipsch horn-loaded speakers in general are not neutral. They are colored, especially in the critical midrange and treble regions, which are exaggerated and tiring with longer-term listening.

You will find neutral sound really pleasing and natural, even startling, especially with good recordings. Bad recordings will also be accurately reproduced so don't expect great speakers like the M80s to compensate for bad recordings.

I won't relate how the old Klipsch Heresys did in the Sound Canada tests in the 1980s because they may have improved somewhat over the years and I haven't heard newer versions.

Good listening with your new M80s!

Alan Lofft,
Axiom Resident Expert (Retired)

#399394 - 12/19/13 01:33 PM Re: Comparing M80's to Klipsch Heresy [Re: D_Rick]
tomtuttle Offline

Registered: 06/20/03
Posts: 8488
Loc: Tacoma
I had Klipsch KG-4's in the 1980's for a while. I have had M60's for almost ten years now. I have not listened to them side by side.

Since you are accustomed to the sound of the Klipsch, I think the Axioms will present a bit of an adjustment for the reasons already mentioned. The Axioms are more balanced, more linear and more detailed, IMO. They are also much less efficient, but just as capable of very high SPL (especially with the models you've chosen).

I enjoy listening to many different speakers, and try hard not to frame the experience as uniformly "better or worse".

I hope you will enjoy the new speakers. I am envious of your amp!
bibere usque ad hilaritatem

#399396 - 12/19/13 01:55 PM Re: Comparing M80's to Klipsch Heresy [Re: D_Rick]
D_Rick Offline
frequent flier

Registered: 12/18/13
Posts: 13
Loc: British Columbia
Thanks All, for the fast responses to my question - interestingly, the comments on the Klipsch's tend to support my general feeling about my Klipsch's when I've compared them to other,newer speakers that I've heard at various friends places - the impression that the newer speakers had more airy(?), pleasing highs than my Klipsch's did.

So, I'm really looking forward to hearing my new M80's (and really hoping Axiom can get them out the door soon :))

#399413 - 12/19/13 06:32 PM Re: Comparing M80's to Klipsch Heresy [Re: D_Rick]
SirQuack Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 01/29/04
Posts: 13629
Loc: Iowa
just an fyi, my Odyssey Ultra Khartaga's used to rock my m80's with fabulous sound, now that job is handled nicely by my Outlaws.
M80s VP180 4xM22ow 4xM3ic EP600 2xEP350
AnthemAVM60 Outlaw7700 EmoA500 Epson5040UB SonyUBPX800

#402568 - 04/07/14 05:04 PM Re: Comparing M80's to Klipsch Heresy [Re: D_Rick]
Boomzilla Offline

Registered: 09/25/13
Posts: 125
Loc: Louisiana
Hmmm - I'd respond to this question with a question - WHICH Heresy versions do you own?

The Heresy 1 versions do have "horn sound," but the T-35 tweeters do an amazing job on cymbals & brass

The Heresy 2 versions are even more horn sounding, but this can be ameliorated by putting some wave guides (ping pong balls, usually) in the throats of the mid & tweeter horns.

The Heresy 3 versions with the titanium drivers are faster sounding than any of the previous versions, but have a slight midrange dip, to my ears. This adds imaging, but at the expense of verisimilitude on male voices.

Yes, the Axioms are more accurate than any of the Heresy models, but they lack the "jump factor" of the higher sensitivity Klipsches. The Heresys, when placed on stands, used with a good subwoofer, and carefully toed to avoid the bright spots, can provide a "you are there" experience that the more accurate Axioms are hard pressed to match.

So for frequency neutrality, go Axiom. For dynamics, go Klipsch.
My opinion is worth exactly what you're paying for it!


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