Best bang for the buck used speakers under $50k ?

smodtactical

Administrator
Staff member
Looking for an upgrade over my paradigm signature s8v2s. Want to spend max $50k but hopefully get a used speaker that has an MSRP that is much more or a sonic quality that makes it worth much more.

So far speakers im considering:

Most interested =====
Magico S5 MK2
Magico M3/M2
Focal stella utopia 2 EM
Canton 1k

Somewhat interested =====
Nola concert grand reference
Acoustic Zen Crescendo II or Maestro
Von Schweikert VR10
TAD Reference 1
Revel Salon 2
Lumenwhite Kyara
Paradigm Persona 9H
Dynaudio evdience platinum
MBL 101e
Peak consult Kepheus
Surrountec monolog

Eliminated =====
Rockport (they use wool, willing to make wool free custom version but then I'll be paying full msrp which isn't happening)

Of this list I only heard stella evo (not the old gen in this list, and I enjoyed it). I enjoy detailed sound but also some warmth and bass impact and extension. Listen to mostly Jazz, classical, ambient some techno/house. Rest of system will probably need an upgrade but its bryston 4bsst x 2 (with sst2 mobos), denafrips terminator, audio gd he9 (preamp), sotm 200 ultra streamer.

Thanks.
 
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kach22i

New member
Where are you at in this search?

Two of the most intriguing speakers I ever heard are no longer made, nothing even close technology wise to them on the market today.

In my mind, if I had the funds I'd have one of those orphaned oddities, gotta be different.
 

smodtactical

Administrator
Staff member
Kach which speakers are you talking about?

I am still exploring. I used to think all I really love is a really precise sound like that produced by my HD800S. But lately listening to my ZMF atticus and it makes me so emotionally engaged and connected to the music its unreal.

If the HD800S is a ultra sharp 8k VR headset.
The Atticus is a mushroom laced reverie of an enchanted forest.

So now I am thinking I might want a speaker that is detailed but still has some warmth. The canton 1k really interests me but its hard to find reviews. Rockport probably would be ideal but they use wool which I don't buy so thats out.

I should add to the list the Acoustic Zen Crescendo II.
 

kach22i

New member
I think you know that you need to take your time and not rush into anything unless you want to be one of those flippers.

25 years ago I almost bought some Magnepans but waited until Martin Logan came out with the Aerius. None of the prior M/L offerings were as balanced and could do Rock & Roll, allowing the bass driver to cross over into the mid-range was daring but it paid off.

Sometimes the speaker you have waited for is just around the corner.

If I had the time and money I'd want to hear everything under the sun, starting with these exciter panel speakers.


If's it's different and weird, I want to see it and hear it.

I hate 90% of all box speakers, but that's just me.
 

verdantaudio

New member
I would check out the Raidho D4.1s which you can get in that range. They are a special speaker though your room has to be just right to handle them. I say that looking at your tweeter choice on your favorites and if you do miss them....these things happen. You seem to like beryllium and the ribbon is what makes Raidho's special along with the very deep and wide soundstage.

I love the sound of MBLs. Don't think I could live with them the way they look but I love the sound. If you can live with the design, man are they awesome.

You are clearly a Magico fan. Is there something about those speakers that is keeping you from committing? I ask this because I went through a similar process and was always slightly unhappy with every speaker I heard. I ultimately had to do the design myself to get it just right to my taste. Have you thought about working with a smaller company to design it to your taste exactly?
 

smodtactical

Administrator
Staff member
I would check out the Raidho D4.1s which you can get in that range. They are a special speaker though your room has to be just right to handle them. I say that looking at your tweeter choice on your favorites and if you do miss them....these things happen. You seem to like beryllium and the ribbon is what makes Raidho's special along with the very deep and wide soundstage.

I love the sound of MBLs. Don't think I could live with them the way they look but I love the sound. If you can live with the design, man are they awesome.

You are clearly a Magico fan. Is there something about those speakers that is keeping you from committing? I ask this because I went through a similar process and was always slightly unhappy with every speaker I heard. I ultimately had to do the design myself to get it just right to my taste. Have you thought about working with a smaller company to design it to your taste exactly?
Hey thanks, ya im pretty impressed with magico but I actually am thinking of getting away from beryllium just because I don't like that its a toxic substance if inhaled lol.

Definitely want to hear the Raidhos.
 

verdantaudio

New member
Hey thanks, ya im pretty impressed with magico but I actually am thinking of getting away from beryllium just because I don't like that its a toxic substance if inhaled lol.

Definitely want to hear the Raidhos.
I get not wanting to have that. In another forum I saw someone post about replacing a Magico tweeter and they were nervous about dealing with the soldering. Given that it was damaged, I was far more nervous for them around the toxicity.

For my CF based speakers, I opted for a Ceramic & Magnesium composite tweeter from Eton. It lacks that metallic edge you get from Beryllium. Accuton also makes a ceramic tweeter and a diamond tweeter that are both briliant. When I make my "statement" speaker I am either going to use Eton's top of the line ribbon or or one of Accuton's tweeters. I love this Arcosia Driver from Eton so I am inclined to stick with the ribbon as it is perfectly matched with it and crosses over at 3khz which is obviously ideal. And the Arcosia is reacting really well with CF based cabinet materials and I am going to use quasi isotropic CF panels for the cabinet material. But I do want to spend some time with Accuton's drivers. I am thinking of using them for bass drivers as I feel like they are a bit more precise than Eton's Hex units.

Thinking of driver manufacturers made me think of two other companies. You need to hear Marten. They use Accuton drivers (Accuton tweaks them for them) and they use composite cabinets. At the low end they are using a fiberglass based cabinet and at the high end they are using CF. To manage costs you can't use CF in modestly priced products. It is 3x more expensive than fiberglass based skins. They use to be less opaque about their cabinets and I think they are using an Airex core which is very good.

The other you need to listen too is Vivid. He is more opaque about the composite he is using in the skin and I suspect it is a fiberglass fabric impregnated with epoxy or phenolic resin. They use a balsa core which performs similarly compared to Airex. I think I know what drivers Vivid uses but it isn't as obvious as someone like Joseph (SEAS) so I am not going to speculate.
 

smodtactical

Administrator
Staff member
I get not wanting to have that. In another forum I saw someone post about replacing a Magico tweeter and they were nervous about dealing with the soldering. Given that it was damaged, I was far more nervous for them around the toxicity.

For my CF based speakers, I opted for a Ceramic & Magnesium composite tweeter from Eton. It lacks that metallic edge you get from Beryllium. Accuton also makes a ceramic tweeter and a diamond tweeter that are both briliant. When I make my "statement" speaker I am either going to use Eton's top of the line ribbon or or one of Accuton's tweeters. I love this Arcosia Driver from Eton so I am inclined to stick with the ribbon as it is perfectly matched with it and crosses over at 3khz which is obviously ideal. And the Arcosia is reacting really well with CF based cabinet materials and I am going to use quasi isotropic CF panels for the cabinet material. But I do want to spend some time with Accuton's drivers. I am thinking of using them for bass drivers as I feel like they are a bit more precise than Eton's Hex units.

Thinking of driver manufacturers made me think of two other companies. You need to hear Marten. They use Accuton drivers (Accuton tweaks them for them) and they use composite cabinets. At the low end they are using a fiberglass based cabinet and at the high end they are using CF. To manage costs you can't use CF in modestly priced products. It is 3x more expensive than fiberglass based skins. They use to be less opaque about their cabinets and I think they are using an Airex core which is very good.

The other you need to listen too is Vivid. He is more opaque about the composite he is using in the skin and I suspect it is a fiberglass fabric impregnated with epoxy or phenolic resin. They use a balsa core which performs similarly compared to Airex. I think I know what drivers Vivid uses but it isn't as obvious as someone like Joseph (SEAS) so I am not going to speculate.
I am eager to hear your speakers. I know every company virutally loves Be tweeters but I just want to get away from them if possible just because they make me uncomfortable. Keep thinking one day my tweeter will blow and spray Be dust everywhere.

I really wonder what you will choose between the accuton and diamond tweeter.

I will look into maarten and vivid, thanks!

Any thoughts on Tekton in general? I know its a much lower price category but I was curious about the ulfberht, encores and moab.
 

verdantaudio

New member
I am going to book Capital Audiofest I think. I will let you know what room I am in and will be showing off the Blackthorns (CF over Nomex cabinet) and TBD on the Art Audio Quartets or the Opus 4s.

I may also have a less expensive Bamboo speaker I am working on. TBD though. It has to be tested and I need to get the crossover just right. Am trying to get a standmount that will be efficient. Maybe 93-94dB SPL as a speaker that will work with my SETs. It is my first time working with compression drivers so this is REALLY TBD. If it fails I will just move on to floorstanders.

I have not heard Tektons. I am talking to the owner of Raven Audio and we may do an after hours matchup of one of his amps vs. the Art Audio Carissa and he mentioned Tektons as the potential speakers.

I am talking to someone out on Long Island who is looking for a SET and has a pair. May hear them if he wants an in-home demo of the Carissa.
 

verdantaudio

New member
Kach22i - first round of finished cabinets will be done next week. If all goes well I will be doing testing in late August, early September and may have these to listen too at Capital AudioFest. Targeting a $2K and $4K price point based on different driver and crossover configurations.
 
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