Got him to buy Axioms!

Posted by: nickbuol

Got him to buy Axioms! - 06/11/13 09:12 AM

So in one (or two) of my ramblings on here, I mentioned a couple of guys at work that were building new homes. One guy went the expensive option, buying somewhat lower quality gear for an over-inflated price via an installer. They didn't provide any configuration or calibration services for audio or video, and for those that remember, I was there when the guy connecting everything up getting the subwoofer connected. His "calibration" was to turn the sub up until it started distorting the audio and say "Yeah baby, listen to THAT!"

Anyway, back to guy #2. He is more, how do I say, "economical" in his choices. He is not afraid of a little DIY efforts, or saving money. Well, last month Axiom had the "20% off Factory Outlet" sale. He was looking for some inwall fronts, and I started pricing things up from 6 different speaker lines (Axiom was obviously one of them, and one was crazy priced and dropped early from the choices). With the sale going on, I told him that it was a no-brainer to go Axiom. He didn't go with the biggest setup in the world, but it was still a stretch for him to spend $1,200 for 7 speakers (after the 20% factory outlet discount and 5% discount for ordering 5 or more speakers). His current system in his house that he just sold was some $400 bundle of a low model Onkyo receiver and a 5.1 panasonic speaker setup, so spending 3x that price just on speakers is pushing his personal confort a little, plus he will still need a sub later on.

Anyway, so he said that the ship date (maybe it was the estimate receive date) is this Friday.

I am going over to his new place tomorrow night after work and we are running smurf tubes, speaker wire, and a bunch of HDMI throughout the house. I haven't see the house in 3 weeks, and it just had the electrial roughin walkthrough yesterday, so he needs to get the wiring done asap so that they can start the drywall. Of course, as luck would have it, he is in Scotland next week for work.

I wonder if there is still some "referal" bonus for something like this. I mean, he has been to my house a couple of times for both demos, and full movies (Safe House and something else), and I was the one that did the leg work on the product comparisons. It wasn't hard to get him interested in buying Axiom after hearing my setup, and when the sale price had them right in the same price range as lower quality stuff.

I don't know exactly when he bought since I was out of town for work the week of May 20th, then out of town again from May 29th - June 6th. Then he was out since then until today. He was so excited to tell me this morning that he bought Axioms.

For those wondering, the choices that he was looking at were:
Axiom Audio
Boston Accoustics
Polk Audio
And a couple of "combinations" of the above

He should have ended up with:
(2) M2 v3 In-Wall Front L/R
(1) VP100 v3 In-Wall Center
(4) QS4 v3 Surrounds

I tried to get him to jump to three M22s for the L/C/R, but I don't know what he did. He just told me that he "bought the ones I told him to." I told him a few things, so maybe he went with the M22s, but knowing how concerned he was about price, he probably stayed with the M2/VP100 combo.

Anyway, he won't ever be on the forums... Not that type of person, but he is another member of the Axiom family nonetheless.

PS. I will take some pictures of his theater install as things move along since people like to look at stuff. It will be pretty basic since it is a shared family room space and he isn't doing any sound proofing or acoustial treatments, but still. I like pictures.
Posted by: EFalardeau

Re: Got him to buy Axioms! - 06/11/13 09:17 AM

That's a neat little setup that will sound very good at a really nice price. If he moved to 3 x M22s, then it is be a great sounding setup for not much more money if he can afford it. Your friend has a good friend!
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Got him to buy Axioms! - 06/11/13 09:21 AM


With M2s, a VP100 and QS4's, it won't be long before he's looking at some sort of sub, though!
Posted by: nickbuol

Re: Got him to buy Axioms! - 06/11/13 09:32 AM

Right one both of your comments.

As for the sub, the house isn't going to be finished until "early August" so that really means mid/late August. He is holding off on a sub, receiver, and projector until then since he doesn't have space to store them and doesn't want to move more than he needs to when the time comes, even if it is just 2 miles away.

I am trying to get him to spend around $800 on a sub since it is going to be in a LARGE open area in his basement, but he is again looking for an "economical" option. I told him that some of these cheap $200 - $400 subs won't cut it. He about died when I told him $800 for a sub. That puts him into the EP350, VTF-3 MK4, PB12-NSD price range, and for a large space of about 12,650 cuft, he will need absolutely everything that he can get for that price.
Posted by: Adrian

Re: Got him to buy Axioms! - 06/11/13 12:32 PM

Nick, he could also go the DIY route on the sub, or at least "pseudo" DIY (if he's not handy) where the kit is all sorted out, you just assemble it. There's some excellent subs in that price range.
Posted by: nickbuol

Re: Got him to buy Axioms! - 06/11/13 02:25 PM

Good point.

On a related note, my kids asked me what I wanted to Father's Day.

I told them a 4'x8' sheet of 3/4" MDF cut to specifications from Home Depot. My wife asked why, and I said, for my 2nd sub. Home depot will make enough of the cuts for free, and leave enough scraps left over for internal bracing that I won't even have to break out my table saw. smile
Posted by: Amie

Re: Got him to buy Axioms! - 06/11/13 04:18 PM

Hi Nick;

There is a referral bonus - please PM me his name and I'll get your Axiom bux over to you!
Posted by: nickbuol

Re: Got him to buy Axioms! - 06/11/13 05:30 PM

PM Sent. laugh
Posted by: SirQuack

Re: Got him to buy Axioms! - 06/11/13 05:47 PM

and I referred Nick, so I get double bonus, lol
Posted by: nickbuol

Re: Got him to buy Axioms! - 06/11/13 05:57 PM

Originally Posted By: PorterPlex
and I referred Nick, so I get double bonus, lol

Sorry sir, but I had my Axioms before I ever met you.

I came over that one time to sit in on your demo for someone else and brought some demo discs. Arranged through our postings on this forum. I wonder how long it would take to search back to when that was. Anyway I wanted to hear the M80s with multiple subs and acoustical panels vs. my M60s, single sub, and no panels. Your setup sounded great and pushed me into v3.0 of my theater and single handedly is the main reason I want to get my second sub done and acoustical panels up in my latest room.
Posted by: SirQuack

Re: Got him to buy Axioms! - 06/11/13 06:28 PM

Oh, I know...I was just talking about I referred you to this guy, lol...trying to pull a fast one on Amy.

Things are so different now in my setup since I enclosed the room, I've GOT to post new pics.. smile

I think the guy that came over was from Pella or something like that...some of his tunes I think were ripped on low compression as I remember hearing some screaching highs. smile The next week a guy came over a played Michael Jackson... he he
Posted by: Gr8_White_North

Re: Got him to buy Axioms! - 06/11/13 09:03 PM

I am not a huge fan of MJ but his recordings were top notch. The few songs I do like sound fantastic and would great music to demo speakers.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Got him to buy Axioms! - 06/11/13 09:59 PM

Good show, Nick!
Posted by: nickbuol

Re: Got him to buy Axioms! - 06/13/13 03:08 PM

He told me that his Axioms shipped yesterday. I told him that if they show up tomorrow that I would like to see them so that I have a visual in my head of physical size, etc. We'll see...

We spent a few hours last night trying to wiring things up. I swear I should have just bought everything and done it myself and had him pay me for materials. He bought 1/2" ID blue Smurf tube and wanted to put three sets of 14 gauge wire with extra outside sheathing AND a wire for an IR repeater though that stuff. WAY too small, and I told him that ahead of time that if he was getting smurf tube to go at least 3/4" ID and get the wire without the extra sheathing.

Needless to say, the most that we could get through was 2 sets of wires and the wire for the IR repeater. The 3rd set wouldn't go at all.

So after some choice words on his part, we left (it was also starting to get too dark in the basement to work since there is no live electrical yet), and he went to the closest home improvement store and bought some larger Smurf tube just for the section that needed the 3 sets of speaker wire and the one IR repeater wire. He is playing sick this afternoon and going to get that run.

Then he needs to run the Smurf tube to the side and rear surrounds. The 1/2" ID stuff should work since the most he will put in is 2 sets in each tube (side surrounds paired up and rear surrounds paired up).

He also found out that his hard conduit for his HDMI for the projector was too small for the cable to make any bends.

Poor guy. I told him to use the big stuff because it is hidden anyway and the increased cost was minimal. I guess he forgot.

Here is what I meant by the wire had an extra layer of sheathing that added just too much bulk.
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Got him to buy Axioms! - 06/13/13 03:38 PM

Originally Posted By: nickbuol
Here is what I meant by the wire had an extra layer of sheathing that added just too much bulk.

That's to be expected when you buy bulk wire.
Posted by: CatBrat

Re: Got him to buy Axioms! - 06/13/13 04:32 PM

If you are using normal shipping, it'll take about 5-7 days to get there.
Posted by: nickbuol

Re: Got him to buy Axioms! - 06/13/13 07:14 PM

Originally Posted By: MarkSJohnson
Originally Posted By: nickbuol
Here is what I meant by the wire had an extra layer of sheathing that added just too much bulk.

That's to be expected when you buy bulk wire.

I see what you did there. LOL
Posted by: nickbuol

Re: Got him to buy Axioms! - 06/13/13 07:15 PM

Originally Posted By: CatBrat
If you are using normal shipping, it'll take about 5-7 days to get there.

Ah... Back when I bought my Axioms, it took something like 2 days. It was crazy fast. I guess I haven't seen the shipping info in a while.
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: Got him to buy Axioms! - 06/13/13 07:41 PM

My EP400 shipped last Thurs, 06 Jun & arrived here yesterday, Wed 13 Jun - 7 days. That's from Ontario to Vancouver Island, BC.

FEDEX tracking was a little weak as there were no updates from the first day in Mississauga, ON until Vancouver, BC; however, they arrived exactly as initially predicted...

Posted by: nickbuol

Re: Got him to buy Axioms! - 10/22/13 10:00 AM

So 4 months plus about a week and I finally was invited over to calibrate his audio (and thus Axioms). As expected, their house wasn't done (heck, still isn't "done" yet) so a delay was expected.

Anyway, he was already pretty excited about the way that his Axioms sound.

From the first post, he has:
(2) M2 v3 In-Wall Front L/R
(1) VP100 v3 In-Wall Center
(4) QS4 v3 Surrounds
And some small powered sub. I would have to ask him the model (I didn't look close enough last night). It is 10" at best if not 8" and in about a 1.5cuft box (if that).

Anyway, you already see the weakest link, but let's not go there yet.

The space is massive. A huge open space that flows into a big wet bar area, and other space (kind of dead space that I would have re-purposed if it was my house) and a large opening going upstairs.

So ok, we have a LOT of cuft of air to fill with sound.

First things first, we play a few demo clips from the blu-ray demo discs that I brought to get a "before" experience...

Then I start with the basic Audyssey MultEQ XT calibration to 8 mic locations per spec from an Audyssey "expert how-to" forum thread elsewhere on the 'net. This is just to 1) see what the room correction does, 2) shows him how to do it himself and 3) might be a quick and easy way to get a sound improvement.

Going through the setup, and everything on the right side of the room is listed as being about twice as far away from the initial mic location as it really is. This must be because the left side of the space is walled off, and the right side is open to that "dead space" and to the upstairs. We fix that as this impacts the audio delay of each channel and we want it to be correct. Then, we bump up the center channel 3.0db per his request (and common practice). And then we start putting in some demo material. We hit up some of my blu-ray demo discs and start with clips that focus on surround effects and he was blown away at how much better it sounded. I too agreed that the sound image of the surround channels was excellent. In the one Transformers battle scene, you could pinpoint the locations of just about every bullet and energy weapon blast throughout the surround channels.

Next up, the LFE section. I am worried about his little sub. We had to turn it up A LOT to get it to the "pre-Audyssey setup level" of 75db. First clip, from Iron Man, the Jericho missile scene. The "thump" of the launch is fine, and then it all goes into the crapper. It just can't handle the LFE of when the missile splits into smaller projectiles, or the explosion. It just sounded like crap. We adjusted that down quite a bit to get at least fairly clean bass.

Then we played some of the music samples on the blu-ray discs. the Eagles' "Hotel California", John Mayer's "Waiting on the World to Change", and REO Speedwagon's "Take it on the Run." They all sounded great in his space.

There were significant issues though that I couldn't get past. The space still had some echo to it which impacted intelligibility, but he won't be doing anything that will help that at all, which is understandable since the space is a shared family room/wet bar/etc. Also, the elephant in the room was that little sub. The one that he said he didn't want to upgrade when he bought his Axioms. I mean, the M2 and VP100 in-walls do very well despite the size of the space, but there is a distinct sound gap, no a sound hole below 80Hz because the sub just doesn't do much. It made things, though clean and clear for mids/highs, just sound "empty" overall.

I was telling him that he should let me bring over my DIY sub for a day and let him use that to see what he is missing. I told him that this would be a great way to see what a bigger and better sub would do for him. I mentioned that it wouldn't have to be as big as what I built, but something with a 12" woofer, few hundred clean watts of power, and in a little bit larger box and it would be a world of difference.

We will see if he takes me up on the offer.

All-in-all though, the littler Axiom speakers did very well. I was totally impressed with them. I still love my M60/VP180 front combo with QS8 surrounds, but the smaller speakers impressed me for a room with a lot more cuft of air than what I have. Just needs that lower end coverage from a good sub and his space will really impress the family and friends.
Posted by: Nick B

Re: Got him to buy Axioms! - 10/23/13 12:37 PM

One thing that he can do right now with the sub is to put it as close to the listening position as possible. There is no way that little sub will be able to pressurize that large of a space. Heck even if he goes with a $800 he may have the same problems. That would also help minimize the room interactions before the bass comes to his ear.
Posted by: nickbuol

Re: Got him to buy Axioms! - 10/23/13 03:05 PM

His seats are in the middle of his room with a lot of "walking space" around them, but not a real good location for putting the sub closer. I know that it is 9.5 feet from the middle of his 2 rows of seats (we physically measured it the other night during calibration). Anything else would change that by maybe 2 feet tops.

I told him again that I will bring over my DIY sub when he is ready to invest into a sub. Then he can borrow the sub for a weekend and give a larger sub a trial run. I have all of my math calculations for ideal seating locations to avoid standing waves/room harmonics (granted those are for "rectangular" rooms though) to try to avoid the big nulls, and his seats were pretty close to on the mark that we left them.

He told me that his "sub" has an 8" woofer and is 125 watts, but it got distorted pretty easily. A 12" with around 300 watts will do much better. Not perfect, but I think that it will really impress him.