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  • Arx blending with Adam A7s?

    Currently I have a pair of Adam A7s and a SVS PB-12sub that I bought some years ago which is connected to a Denon AVR-1906. Recently, the receiver stopped accepting digital or outputting to the sub channel. I'm in the middle of doing some serious upgrades (I want multichannel!) and had a few questions about the Arx speakers.

    I have a Yamaha RX-A3020 receiver on the way (150W per channel) to fill an oddly shaped room in which I can reasonably get a 5.1 system. I can't do 7.1 for now, but the Yamaha will be used this way down the line, which is why I overbought on the receiver end of things.

    I love the Adam's for their sound clarity for just about everything in a 2.1 system. While I would love an all active system of the same make, both price and setup are not feasible. Instead, I was looking into blending the Adams with a passive set of speakers with a similar sound, which brings me to the Arx line as perhaps the best for the price over ML Motion or Golden ear's systems.

    Do you guys think the Adam A7s as mains, with the Arx A2b as center and A1B as surrounds would blend together well?

    If instead I used the Arx A3 or A5s as mains, do you think the Yamaha would work better with one or the other? Perhaps the A5s would be underpowered without a separate amp (and they are slightly over budget to begin with).

    Last question: Has anyone found a TV stand that you can put on a media center that will raise up a flatscreen so you get get a horizontal center speaker underneath it?

    Thanks in advance for any help,
    dnl

  • #2
    They could work out but I've never listened to anything from Adam. Just because Adam and Arx use ribbon/planar tweeters doesn't mean they will sound similar. Crossover design and other goals that the designer wanted will be different.

    The Arx planar is laid back and never "IN YOUR FACE" just a very natural neutral sound that doesn't have a characteristic that is noticable.

    I would just start over with a passive (non-powered) system using your receiver to power everything. I use an Onkyo TX-NR818 (120watts) to power Arx A5 mains, A2 center, A2 surrounds and A1 bookshelfs and it does a great job.

    So far theres no release date for the A2c center, so alot of guys are using the A1b single as a center.

    I compared my A5s to the Golden Ear towers and the A5s had better treble and midrange. The GE's are very weak IMO in the midrange and only have a bloated bass too them from the powered woofers. A5s would be competitive with Paradigm Monitor 9 and 11s, Axiom M80s, Aperion towers, Monitor Bronze and Silver towers, ect...

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by dnl
      Currently I have a pair of Adam A7s and a SVS PB-12sub that I bought some years ago which is connected to a Denon AVR-1906. Recently, the receiver stopped accepting digital or outputting to the sub channel. I'm in the middle of doing some serious upgrades (I want multichannel!) and had a few questions about the Arx speakers.

      I have a Yamaha RX-A3020 receiver on the way (150W per channel) to fill an oddly shaped room in which I can reasonably get a 5.1 system. I can't do 7.1 for now, but the Yamaha will be used this way down the line, which is why I overbought on the receiver end of things.

      I love the Adam's for their sound clarity for just about everything in a 2.1 system. While I would love an all active system of the same make, both price and setup are not feasible. Instead, I was looking into blending the Adams with a passive set of speakers with a similar sound, which brings me to the Arx line as perhaps the best for the price over ML Motion or Golden ear's systems.

      Do you guys think the Adam A7s as mains, with the Arx A2b as center and A1B as surrounds would blend together well?

      If instead I used the Arx A3 or A5s as mains, do you think the Yamaha would work better with one or the other? Perhaps the A5s would be underpowered without a separate amp (and they are slightly over budget to begin with).

      Last question: Has anyone found a TV stand that you can put on a media center that will raise up a flatscreen so you get get a horizontal center speaker underneath it?

      Thanks in advance for any help,
      dnll

      It's impossible to say how well they will blend. It's not nearly as simple as matching a FR curve and overall gain. It would be simpler (and more costly) to go all Arx. However, you never know until you try. I have heard many good things about the Adams, but I have not heard them myself. Besides, I could never tell you what YOUR EARS perceive. :)

      The A5's are the most efficient speaker in the Arx lineup so they would actually make BEST use of your receiver's power amp section. However, ANY of the Arx models would work very well as they are all very easy loads to drive. The A3's are the second most sensitive and would also work very well for your uses.

      However, the A5's are mind-bogglingly good for their price. They would be in the same class as the paradigm Monitor 11's, but they have a smoothness, clarity, and enormity of soundstage that simply betrays their price point. They were designed with the obsessiveness of a stereo-only reference pair. You're getting very close to studio stand-monitor sweetness from a compact tower. I am quite biased towards the A5's even if you postponed some rear A1b's surround speakers until later. I'm confident you'll be pleased that you did.

      Comment


      • #4
        Thanks for the suggestions

        Regarding the Goldenears - I have perhaps a superstitious distrust of quadratic/elliptical drivers. I feel like I'm putting pioneer 6x9's in the back of a Buick again. Also, the additional powered subwoofer is not needed and only adds to the $.

        I've been rethinking things. I could go with an Adam artist center (so that the front is all matched) and do passive Arx speakers in the back or cheaper Adams (about the same $). However, I don't like the idea of running RCA or the multiple grounds that active back speakers would require. Instead I can go all Arx, and repurpose the Adam's (which sound quite neutral/natural as well) for a small computer setup that shares space with the dining room. It's overkill, but they'll definitely outperfrom the computer speakers I was looking at. Now, I have to find a good computer balanced audio out...

        Between the A3 and A5, I'm strongly leaning toward the A5's to start a 2.1 system. When the A2b comes in I can then make a 5.1 system. I think I was worried about the Yamaha because (1) wattage goes down with more channels driven, (2) the A5 have more drivers and a higher wattage range, (3) reading some people suggesting external amps. However, since all the Arx are high efficiency and 6 Ohm, the Yamaha will likely put out enough power. If not, I could always add an external amp down the line.

        A relevant question:
        If you mix passive speakers from a receiver with main speakers on an external amp (essentially mixing active and passive speakers), would you expect time alignment problems due to audio delay?

        Comment


        • #5
          For those interested, I looked more into raising my TV so that a horizontal A2B could fit underneath (on the media center) without obstructing the screen. The A2B would cover about 2-3'' now.

          My media center is 48(l)x30(h)x19(d)'' and the TV stand is a trapezoid ~20"x10". I don't want to drill into the media center, and I cannot use a wall mount.

          There are a few wood/metal stands like
          http://www.amazon.com/OFC-Express-Mo...tor+stand+wood
          Many would raise the TV, but are either too short to fit the A2B underneath, too small to fit the TV stand, or don't give enough depth to fit the A2B in front without something hanging over.

          The other option is computer monitor stands rated for >33lbs and getting some VESA adapter plates. Assuming you can disregard the monitor size limitations and use the weight ratings instead, there are a few options, but most cost quite a bit or require you to drill into the surface to secure them.

          Monoprice has two:
          http://www.monoprice.com/products/pr...seq=1&format=2
          http://www.monoprice.com/products/pr...#specification
          but there are concerns the ball joint may not hold the weight as rated (amazon reviews) causing the screen to lean forward.
          I think I'll give it a try, perhaps gluing the ball joint if necessary.

          I may have to cobble something together myself.

          Other suggestions?

          Comment


          • #6
            I would say those A7 monitors would be much better as a PC desktop setup than a true hometheater living room setup. The Arx A5s will play louder, deeper, better dynamics and have a much larger soundstage than the Adam A7s.

            I would go with the A5 over the A3. For one the A3 is out of stock and theres not date in the near future for it to be restocked, just a wait and see approach. Another would be the A5 will image better, have better midrange resolution, lower distortion in the bass and midrange (multiple drivers doing the work of one or two).

            Don't be worried about your "All Channels Driven Wattage" the speakers will only use a fraction of those watts at some crazy output levels. You have a good receiver with a great power supply, I highly doubt you would need any external amps.

            Higher wattage rating and multiple drivers doesn't mean you have to have external high powered amps to get the most from the speakers. These goes for any brand. Some people suggest external amps but most of the time its for the wrong reasons. If you do need more output than what the receiver is capable of then yes a external amp would be need (rare cases or very inefficient speakers). The common misconception is that an amp gives you tigher bass, lighter airyer highers, larger expansive soundstage ect... When in fact they only give you output, if you don't need the output you have several hundred watts at idle just sucking up the power and not doing anything.

            Now at least with my Onkyo I have the option in the speaker menu to select whether its a passive speakers or using and external amp. That I would assume would account for audio delay.

            Comment


            • #7
              Thanks again.

              A5s it is*. Adam A7's for desk duty. I'll order A1Bs and A2B and go 5.1 when the A2Bs are available.

              I think there is a similar setting in the Yamaha receiver which came in yesterday. I'll have to read the manual more carefully, but since I'll be using the internal amp, I don't think I'll need it.

              I haven't read of any delay with external amps, but wondered if it was a problem when mixing with internal amp speakers. Maybe the delay is quite small or nearly nonexistent when using preouts to an external amp which keeps everything analog. Use of digital out over SPDIF or HDMI ext 2 and a DAC would probably add a more significant delay. Room correction would likely fix any small delay when external amps are used, otherwise powered subs would have a problem.

              Regarding monitor stand for center channel space, I found this, which I should just bite the bullet and buy:
              http://www.standsandmounts.com/Crims...stal-DS46.aspx

              *Its nice when it works out (no A3s) so that what you want is the only option :)

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by dnl
                Thanks again.

                Regarding monitor stand for center channel space, I found this, which I should just bite the bullet and buy:
                http://www.standsandmounts.com/Crims...stal-DS46.aspx
                Did you look into the Center Stage Bracket to put the A2b on top of the TV instead of raising it?
                http://www.amazon.com/CSB1206-Bracke.../dp/B0050AQ6M6

                I used it in my DLP TV before. I know Buford uses it on top of his 55" Vizio LED TV as well. I had it in my LED TV but had to mount the TV and put the A2 on monitor isolation pads on a TV stand below the TV (due to toddlers/safety reasons). I also tried just putting the TV on top of the A2 (to mark the height/clearance required) and the A2 was strong enough to hold the TV (but had to mount it for toddler/safety reasons). The A2/Arx speakers have very good build quality (built like a tank).

                ---

                I also created a TV riser before and purchased a TV stand from Ikea http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/90144730/
                and asked a friend to help cut the stand to the desired height. It's more of a DIY solution though.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by D'Argo
                  Did you look into the Center Stage Bracket to put the A2b on top of the TV instead of raising it?
                  http://www.amazon.com/CSB1206-Bracke.../dp/B0050AQ6M6

                  I used it in my DLP TV before. I know Buford uses it on top of his 55" Vizio LED TV as well. I had it in my LED TV but had to mount the TV and put the A2 on monitor isolation pads on a TV stand below the TV (due to toddlers/safety reasons). I also tried just putting the TV on top of the A2 (to mark the height/clearance required) and the A2 was strong enough to hold the TV (but had to mount it for toddler/safety reasons). The A2/Arx speakers have very good build quality (built like a tank).

                  .
                  That's an interesting option I hadn't consider. May work out better in the end. Should the center channel's drivers be roughly the height of the A5's tweeter and midrange? That is does putting the center up do anything negative?

                  I thought about placing the TV on top of the A2B as the size of the included TV stand base is pretty close to the A2B. I would have to move the TV forward somewhat to avoid reflections off the media center top.
                  Might work though. I'll take a look tonight, but if not the Top shelf option might be the ticket.

                  Oh, A5s on the way!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by dnl
                    That's an interesting option I hadn't consider. May work out better in the end. Should the center channel's drivers be roughly the height of the A5's tweeter and midrange? That is does putting the center up do anything negative?

                    I thought about placing the TV on top of the A2B as the size of the included TV stand base is pretty close to the A2B. I would have to move the TV forward somewhat to avoid reflections off the media center top.
                    Might work though. I'll take a look tonight, but if not the Top shelf option might be the ticket.

                    Oh, A5s on the way!
                    You can adjust the bracket. I had mine tilting a bit downward. The CSB comes with the rubber-waffle-sticky mat and holds the A2 pretty good. This page has a picture of Buford's set up with the A2s on top of the TV. I purchased the CSB based on his set up. I believe he had the CSB 6" version and recommended the 10" version. I purchased the 10" version and it was a perfect size to the A2.

                    http://www.theaudioinsider.com/forum...on-pg-2!/page5

                    Buford also has an Arx A5 break-in video that shows his A2 on the CSB but I can't find it as of the moment. You'll see in the video that almost half of the A2 is protruding forward. Buford has been a very good resource in this forum and has given me a lot of good advice.

                    ---

                    Congratulations on the A5s by the way. You'll enjoy them. It may be too late in the discussion but I used my SLS speakers as surrounds before and I agree with what was said regarding the blending of ribbon speakers. The SLS had ribbon speakers but they are too forward compared to the Arx tweeter. You can pinpoint them during portions of the movies. My 5.0 all Arx speakers blend well and surround me with sound.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Here's the video from Buford: http://www.theaudioinsider.com/forum...-In-Video-(HD) You can have a closer look at his A2 on the CSB. Hope this helps.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I know this is moot at this point, but I don't think you ever have to worry about audio delay from an external amp or powered speakers. For one thing the YPAO (or Audessy) would compensate for any delay.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by D'Argo
                          You can adjust the bracket. I had mine tilting a bit downward. The CSB comes with the rubber-waffle-sticky mat and holds the A2 pretty good. This page has a picture of Buford's set up with the A2s on top of the TV. I purchased the CSB based on his set up. I believe he had the CSB 6" version and recommended the 10" version. I purchased the 10" version and it was a perfect size to the A2.

                          http://www.theaudioinsider.com/forum...on-pg-2!/page5

                          Buford also has an Arx A5 break-in video that shows his A2 on the CSB but I can't find it as of the moment. You'll see in the video that almost half of the A2 is protruding forward. Buford has been a very good resource in this forum and has given me a lot of good advice.

                          ---

                          Congratulations on the A5s by the way. You'll enjoy them. It may be too late in the discussion but I used my SLS speakers as surrounds before and I agree with what was said regarding the blending of ribbon speakers. The SLS had ribbon speakers but they are too forward compared to the Arx tweeter. You can pinpoint them during portions of the movies. My 5.0 all Arx speakers blend well and surround me with sound.
                          Aw shucks. :)


                          Yes, the CSB has been serving me well. The foam-rubber "mat" that came with it was more than fine, but I upgraded to these little suckers (the softest versions):

                          http://www.coolerguys.com/acoustifeet.html

                          I used two 4-packs of the "light" feet, mounted directly on the top of the CSB, inlieu of the foam mat. They are REALLY soft and tacky so they grab the A2 very well. Also, now I get ZERO vibrations in my TV when playing at or above reference level.

                          I did this in early November and they haven't moved even 1/8" at all and my A2 is angled down, with the tweeter aimed at ear level when seated on my couch.

                          I just measured and I have 1 & 1/8" protruding....measured from the front of the CSB bracket to the front of the baffle face (sans grille). I find this eliminates ALL reflections from the TV screen in the listening area.

                          And, dnl, you will NOT regret the A5's. They will surprise you for the price. I guarantee it.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by dnl
                            I thought about placing the TV on top of the A2B as the size of the included TV stand base is pretty close to the A2B. I would have to move the TV forward somewhat to avoid reflections off the media center top.
                            Might work though. I'll take a look tonight, but if not the Top shelf option might be the ticket.
                            dnl, I had my 60" LED TV on top of the A2 for a couple of hours and it seemed fine. I also moved it forward to avoid the reflections. Although the A2 can hold the weight of the TV (~60 lbs.), I did not keep it there for long. My thinking was the A2 was not designed to hold TVs and I did not want to return home one day and end up with a broken TV and worse, a broken A2. So I ended up wall mounting the TV and putting the A2 on Auralex Monitor Isolation pads http://www.amazon.com/Auralex-MOPAD-...isolation+pads (to tilt them upwards). Safety first, I guess... may be the other members can weigh in?

                            On a side note, putting them on the isolation pads tightened up the bass. I think it's due to the reduction of vibrations as Buford's solution above.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by D'Argo
                              dnl, I had my 60" LED TV on top of the A2 for a couple of hours and it seemed fine. I also moved it forward to avoid the reflections. Although the A2 can hold the weight of the TV (~60 lbs.), I did not keep it there for long. My thinking was the A2 was not designed to hold TVs and I did not want to return home one day and end up with a broken TV and worse, a broken A2. So I ended up wall mounting the TV and putting the A2 on Auralex Monitor Isolation pads http://www.amazon.com/Auralex-MOPAD-...isolation+pads (to tilt them upwards). Safety first, I guess... may be the other members can weigh in?

                              On a side note, putting them on the isolation pads tightened up the bass. I think it's due to the reduction of vibrations as Buford's solution above.
                              Also a great solution for vibration isolation. I don't have a single friend who mixes at home and DOESN'T use some form of iso pad (most use Auralex).

                              I've experienced a mild-yet-noticeable increase in vocal clarity for bassy/baritone voices at medium to high volumes that I think is directly attributable to a reduction in vibrations being transmitted between the Arx A2 cabinet and the TV.

                              There is simply no downside as long as you don't spend a fortune doing it.

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