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

Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 4195
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.

#129197 - 03/07/06 09:59 AM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
Ken.C Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 18044
Loc: NoVA
So much that you won't be able to find prices online! Think 5 figures.
I am the Doctor, and THIS... is my SPOON!

#129198 - 03/07/06 12:27 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
davidsch Offline

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.

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

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.

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

Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 4195
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.......


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

Registered: 12/29/05
Posts: 3301
Loc: Central,California
Those are some beautiful speakers, Wow. Great room also, congrats on the purchase.
A computer once beat me at chess, but it was no match for me at kick boxing.

#129202 - 03/16/06 12:51 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
St_PatGuy Offline

Registered: 03/07/05
Posts: 7463
Loc: Glendale, Arizona
Those are some nice looking speakers, Mike. Happy listening!
"Nothin' up my sleeve. . ." --Bullwinkle J. Moose

#129203 - 03/20/06 08:41 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
warfer21 Offline

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.

#129204 - 03/20/06 09:23 PM Re: Wharfedale Opus 2
michael_d Offline

Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 4195
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.


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

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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