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Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 8:41 pm
by ttjt_99
After fellow Bogleheads were so helpful recommending a new subwoofer for me, I thought I’d get some recommendations what may be a good upgrade for my Bose 301s. Don’t get me wrong, I really have enjoyed my 301s and am not yet set on replacing them. I’ve had them for almost 20 years. They put out very nice sounds to my ears. I’m currently running them with a small sub (svs sb1000 being delivered tomorrow) and a Polk center channel. If I were to upgrade though, what would be your recommendations? I’m currently looking at Martin Logan Motion 35xt.

I have these hooked up to a Sony DH 750 receiver for both music and movies.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 8:46 pm
by alter
I really like my B&W 601 speakers. I got them years ago and they still work and look as new. I think the models have changed a bit but I suggest giving the 6xx series a listen in person if you are looking for bookshelf sized.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 9:08 pm
by dsmclone
You didn't mention if you are using these for just music, just TV, or both?

ELAC B6.2 (2 L+R)
ELAC C6.2 (1 C)

These ELAC's were created by Andrew Jones and are pretty much universally loved by the people who buy them. I'm currently running 15 year old NHT's but if I was to upgrade, these are what I would buy.


May as well get a new AVR too. Denon AVR-X1400H for $300 (originally $600). I bought one of these last month and it works great for my home theater. If you're just listening to music than forget getting anything new.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 9:52 pm
by iamlucky13
dsmclone wrote:
Wed Feb 06, 2019 9:08 pm
May as well get a new AVR too. Denon AVR-X1400H for $300 (originally $600). I bought one of these last month and it works great for my home theater. If you're just listening to music than forget getting anything new.
Even for TV, I don't see any significant reason to upgrade the AVR from a ~4 year old model. It might not be a high end model, but the OP is only using it for 3.1 with modest bookshelf speakers. They only catch I see is if they need HDCP 2.2 compliance to do pass through of 4K content, but that's not strictly needed unless you want passthrough for the receiver.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 9:57 pm
by ttjt_99
iamlucky13 wrote:
Wed Feb 06, 2019 9:52 pm
dsmclone wrote:
Wed Feb 06, 2019 9:08 pm
May as well get a new AVR too. Denon AVR-X1400H for $300 (originally $600). I bought one of these last month and it works great for my home theater. If you're just listening to music than forget getting anything new.
Even for TV, I don't see any significant reason to upgrade the AVR from a ~4 year old model. It might not be a high end model, but the OP is only using it for 3.1 with modest bookshelf speakers. They only catch I see is if they need HDCP 2.2 compliance to do pass through of 4K content, but that's not strictly needed unless you want passthrough for the receiver.
Thanks for the pointers guys. No, I’m not in the market for a new receiver. The Sony I’ve had for only a couple years and it puts out some respectable sound. I don’t yet have a 4K tv so the 2.2 compliance is moot for me. Also, I would listen to this at moderate levels as I’m in a condo with neighbors. My Bose can go up to obnoxiously loud levels.

I’m looking to bring out the intricacies of the music more than anything.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 10:03 pm
by knightrider
Check out NHT, Paradigm, PSB to name a few. Any of these will be a noticeable upgrade from Bose. I would suggest buying them used locally. Generally audiophile speakers depreciate alot. I typically pay around 1/5'th the MSRP for them..

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 10:42 pm
by 02nz
I also recommend ELAC, but would go for the step-up Uni-Fi line. The bookshelf version (UB5) is under $500/pair.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2019 8:02 am
by samsdad
My Klipsch RB81 mk II speakers pair very well with my SVS SB1000. They aren’t made anymore but you can find a pair on amazon and other places for under $500. Front firing bass ports help if they’re up against the wall like mine are.

Does the wife know? :o

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2019 8:06 am
by dsmclone
iamlucky13 wrote:
Wed Feb 06, 2019 9:52 pm
dsmclone wrote:
Wed Feb 06, 2019 9:08 pm
May as well get a new AVR too. Denon AVR-X1400H for $300 (originally $600). I bought one of these last month and it works great for my home theater. If you're just listening to music than forget getting anything new.
Even for TV, I don't see any significant reason to upgrade the AVR from a ~4 year old model. It might not be a high end model, but the OP is only using it for 3.1 with modest bookshelf speakers. They only catch I see is if they need HDCP 2.2 compliance to do pass through of 4K content, but that's not strictly needed unless you want passthrough for the receiver.
I don't believe that he originally said what AVR he was using so I didn't know he only had a 4 year old model. Agree that for his situation, a new AVR makes no sense.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:22 am
by lazydavid
What Polk center channel? If it's one of their better ones, it might be worth looking at timbre-matched fronts. I've been using a pair of Polk RT-800i's with a CS400 center and matching in-ceiling rears for 20+ years, and liked that well enough that I got a set of RTI-A5's and a CSI-A6 for a setup in another room about 7 years ago.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:26 am
by Barsoom
ttjt_99 wrote:
Wed Feb 06, 2019 8:41 pm
Don’t get me wrong, I really have enjoyed my 301s and am not yet set on replacing them. I’ve had them for almost 20 years. They put out very nice sounds to my ears.
I still have my Series V 901s that I bought in 1986.

-B

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:39 am
by dollarbillz
I own and am partial to B&W. Currently have CM series (recently upgraded and rebadged 700 series), but in retrospect may have have gone with 600 series for similar sound/performance and better price.

I helped a buddy set up a system with def techs and would also consider them as a cost-conscious, but very clean sounding option. Others may disagree but I believe these would be an upgrade over your current Bose.

Agree with buying second hand locally, if an available option for you.

Anecdotally, I’ve also found that this is about the time of year that you can see markdowns at your local home theater shop as they need to make space for their new gear. Give them a call.

Finally, depend on where you land with speakers, I don’t think it’s unreasonable to reassess if you have enough power in your amp/avr to get the best performance out of them. But, I’ve been down this rabbit hole before, have to be careful or it can get out of hand.

Good luck.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:43 am
by dumbbunny
Barsoom wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:26 am
ttjt_99 wrote:
Wed Feb 06, 2019 8:41 pm
Don’t get me wrong, I really have enjoyed my 301s and am not yet set on replacing them. I’ve had them for almost 20 years. They put out very nice sounds to my ears.
I still have my Series V 901s that I bought in 1986.

-B
I bought my 901s in '75. Keep them around until 2011. I would still have them but the new house I was moving into didn't have the reflecting walls they require.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2019 10:11 am
by Barsoom
My problem was finding a replacement receiver that still had "tape loop" capability for the special equalizer.

-B

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2019 10:19 am
by ttjt_99
Does the wife know? :o
[/quote]

Haha yes the wife knows I'm looking. We've both been trying to get back into listening to music as opposed to watching t.v. in the evenings which I'm all for. She was the one to convice me to buy the SVS sb1000 oddly enough! Love that woman lol

Fortunately Crutchfield's home store is a mile from my house and they have great customer service. You can find deals with open box items, but they can still be pricey. They had a pair of KEF LS50s set up and they played for me with a nice amp, and wow they sounded good, but it was a different sound complete from my Bose. It wasn't enough to convince me they were so much better.

To answer the question on the center channel. It's a Polk TL1 which isn't the highest end, but it adds very nice highs to the sound of the Bose. Really brings out vocals in both music and movies. I unfortunately have constraints with my entertainment cabinet with being able to fit anything further, and I'm not sure the wifey want speakers mounted to walls.

I'm probably at the point now where I'll just have to demo some in the home. I've got a narrow but long livingroom shared with a dining room which presents some hurdles. The Sony DH750 seems more than capable to power any bookshelf and does a real nice job pushing the Bose.

I still have my Series V 901s that I bought in 1986.

-B
[/quote]

I bought my 901s in '75. Keep them around until 2011. I would still have them but the new house I was moving into didn't have the reflecting walls they require.
[/quote]

Yes I've heard great things about the 901s but have never heard them in person.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2019 10:34 am
by midareff
OMG, ther sis so much out ther ethat really thumps...... in home auditions only.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2019 4:13 pm
by abc...xyz
This thread is making me feel old… still using the pair of Magnepan MG-III speakers and Hafler DH500 power amp that I bought back in 1984! Back then it was strictly an audio setup also using a Dynaco PAT4 preamp and AF6 tuner. Later replaced the PAT4 preamp with a Hafler DH101 preamp.

Then came home theater… added a Magnepan CC2 center channel, Velodyne F1800XR sub, Yamaha receiver and fairly cheap rear surrounds. Still using this setup today, but it’s about time for a receiver upgrade.

:sharebeer

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2019 6:49 pm
by ttjt_99
abc...xyz wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 4:13 pm
This thread is making me feel old… still using the pair of Magnepan MG-III speakers and Hafler DH500 power amp that I bought back in 1984! Back then it was strictly an audio setup also using a Dynaco PAT4 preamp and AF6 tuner. Later replaced the PAT4 preamp with a Hafler DH101 preamp.

Then came home theater… added a Magnepan CC2 center channel, Velodyne F1800XR sub, Yamaha receiver and fairly cheap rear surrounds. Still using this setup today, but it’s about time for a receiver upgrade.

:sharebeer
If you love the setup, don’t change! I got a new receiver a couple of years ago because my Pioneer theater receiver gave up the ghost. I stream a lot of music from Amazon Music Unlimited through my Amazon echo dot so I have that paired through the Bluetooth on my new receiver. Took a little while for my wife to get the hang of asking Alexa to pair with it, but now I’m up and running with music completely hands free.

Sound quality is very good with the new receiver through the Bluetooth.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2019 7:29 pm
by alter
abc...xyz wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 4:13 pm
This thread is making me feel old… still using the pair of Magnepan MG-III speakers and Hafler DH500 power amp that I bought back in 1984! Back then it was strictly an audio setup also using a Dynaco PAT4 preamp and AF6 tuner. Later replaced the PAT4 preamp with a Hafler DH101 preamp.

Then came home theater… added a Magnepan CC2 center channel, Velodyne F1800XR sub, Yamaha receiver and fairly cheap rear surrounds. Still using this setup today, but it’s about time for a receiver upgrade.

:sharebeer
Not sure why it makes you feel old, I'm still planning on buying some high end Magnepans some day.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2019 8:04 pm
by Finridge
Bose 901's.

But if you are happy with the 301's, then why upgrade?

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2019 8:10 pm
by Dottie57
abc...xyz wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 4:13 pm
This thread is making me feel old… still using the pair of Magnepan MG-III speakers and Hafler DH500 power amp that I bought back in 1984! Back then it was strictly an audio setup also using a Dynaco PAT4 preamp and AF6 tuner. Later replaced the PAT4 preamp with a Hafler DH101 preamp.

Then came home theater… added a Magnepan CC2 center channel, Velodyne F1800XR sub, Yamaha receiver and fairly cheap rear surrounds. Still using this setup today, but it’s about time for a receiver upgrade.

:sharebeer
Lucky person to have Magnepan speakers. I heard a pair at a friends house. They were hug but sounded great.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2019 8:19 pm
by rebellovw
I think some KEFs would be a serious upgrade.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:17 pm
by samsdad
ttjt_99 wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 10:19 am
Haha yes the wife knows I'm looking. We've both been trying to get back into listening to music as opposed to watching t.v. in the evenings which I'm all for. She was the one to convice me to buy the SVS sb1000 oddly enough! Love that woman lol
You should try a used Decware Zen amp. It’s a little vacuum tube amplifier that is amazing. The Decware classified forums have them for sale every so often. You could probably pick one up for $750. I think you’ll find that a tube amp has a lot less listening fatigue than you might get with a solid state. Plus you can get a holographic soundstage by messing around with different tube combinations. I run my amp probably an average of 10-12 hours a day when I’m home and never tire of it. I bought it to listen to internet radio jazz (through a Marantz NA6005) and classical in the background. I upgraded to a different amp later on (a Decware Torii Jr.) but still have the little Zen stashed away for one of my daughters to enjoy some day. My wife loves the sound. Right now, I’m listening to some wonderful jazz out of the Bay Area on KCSM and I’m sitting in Colorado. The TV hasn’t been on all day, but the jazz has.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:41 pm
by ttjt_99
samsdad wrote:
Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:17 pm
ttjt_99 wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 10:19 am
Haha yes the wife knows I'm looking. We've both been trying to get back into listening to music as opposed to watching t.v. in the evenings which I'm all for. She was the one to convice me to buy the SVS sb1000 oddly enough! Love that woman lol
You should try a used Decware Zen amp. It’s a little vacuum tube amplifier that is amazing. The Decware classified forums have them for sale every so often. You could probably pick one up for $750. I think you’ll find that a tube amp has a lot less listening fatigue than you might get with a solid state. Plus you can get a holographic soundstage by messing around with different tube combinations. I run my amp probably an average of 10-12 hours a day when I’m home and never tire of it. I bought it to listen to internet radio jazz (through a Marantz NA6005) and classical in the background. I upgraded to a different amp later on (a Decware Torii Jr.) but still have the little Zen stashed away for one of my daughters to enjoy some day. My wife loves the sound. Right now, I’m listening to some wonderful jazz out of the Bay Area on KCSM and I’m sitting in Colorado. The TV hasn’t been on all day, but the jazz has.

That amp looks nice, but I’d have to figure out how to to run it in conjunction with my home theater receiver which we also use for movies. Not too experienced with this stuff yet. I just got done hooking up my new SVS sb1000 and am extremely pleased with it. It makes my whole system sound really good.
rebellovw wrote:
Fri Feb 08, 2019 8:19 pm
I think some KEFs would be a serious upgrade.
I listened to the KEFs and they did sound really nice in the store so they’re on my short list.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:45 pm
by keanoz
Elacs would be the best for that price

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:49 pm
by ttjt_99
keanoz wrote:
Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:45 pm
Elacs would be the best for that price
The Elacs have gotten some excellent reviews and yeah the price looks very good.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Sat Feb 09, 2019 10:37 am
by GmanJeff
I use Amphion Argon tower speakers for listening to music. Their fidelity is remarkable.

https://amphion.fi/

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Sat Feb 09, 2019 4:42 pm
by ttjt_99
GmanJeff wrote:
Sat Feb 09, 2019 10:37 am
I use Amphion Argon tower speakers for listening to music. Their fidelity is remarkable.

https://amphion.fi/
I’m not familiar with Amphion, but their lineup is impressive.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Sun Feb 10, 2019 1:56 pm
by dumbbunny
rebellovw wrote:
Fri Feb 08, 2019 8:19 pm
I think some KEFs would be a serious upgrade.
As I wrote upstream I sold my Bose 901s and now I have KEF Q50-Towers, KEF 90-center channel and KEF 10 bookshelf (rear) in my system. No regrets.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Sun Feb 10, 2019 2:09 pm
by carol-brennan
Take that money burning a hole in your pocket and put it in a CD or something.

The 301s are fine. I'll keep mine till I die.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Sun Feb 10, 2019 2:28 pm
by TomatoTomahto
Dottie57 wrote:
Fri Feb 08, 2019 8:10 pm
abc...xyz wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 4:13 pm
This thread is making me feel old… still using the pair of Magnepan MG-III speakers and Hafler DH500 power amp that I bought back in 1984! Back then it was strictly an audio setup also using a Dynaco PAT4 preamp and AF6 tuner. Later replaced the PAT4 preamp with a Hafler DH101 preamp.

Then came home theater… added a Magnepan CC2 center channel, Velodyne F1800XR sub, Yamaha receiver and fairly cheap rear surrounds. Still using this setup today, but it’s about time for a receiver upgrade.

:sharebeer
Lucky person to have Magnepan speakers. I heard a pair at a friends house. They were hug but sounded great.
Martin Logan’s sound “similar,” even though the technology is slightly different. They’re not small, but their visual effect is moderated because the panels are see through.

Martin Logan, Anthem, and Blu Vault (or whatever the streaming server is called) rekindled our music listening.

I’m a huge fan of Anthem Room Correction software for those looking to upgrade amps or processors.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Sun Feb 10, 2019 4:34 pm
by GmanJeff
TomatoTomahto wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 2:28 pm

I’m a huge fan of Anthem Room Correction software for those looking to upgrade amps or processors.
This is a good, related, point. Well-applied equalization can make a big difference in how your system performs. In addition to Anthem's tool, Audyssey Room Correction is available in Denon and other brands of receiver. Trinnov is a 3rd such technology. Using such technology in combination with good speakers will very likely provide a much greater improvement in sound quality than new speakers alone.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Sun Feb 10, 2019 4:45 pm
by TomatoTomahto
GmanJeff wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 4:34 pm
TomatoTomahto wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 2:28 pm
I’m a huge fan of Anthem Room Correction software for those looking to upgrade amps or processors.
This is a good, related, point. Well-applied equalization can make a big difference in how your system performs. In addition to Anthem's tool, Audyssey Room Correction is available in Denon and other brands of receiver. Trinnov is a 3rd such technology. Using such technology in combination with good speakers will very likely provide a much greater improvement in sound quality than new speakers alone.
Anecdotal proof for me: we bought a new house recently with a media room. I tried/tried/tried to make the sound work well in the room. It wasn’t room acoustics (I placed sound absorbing panels and bass traps, and the room has a lot of fieldstone wall), or the electronics (monster Marantz top of the line 7.2). I just couldn’t make it sound good, try as I might. I was getting frustrated.

I didn’t want to let a good piece of electronics go to waste, but I bought Anthem’s cheapest 5.2 receiver (MRX520), used the calibrated mike and software: voila. When we decided to add music to our living room, I bought Amthem’s hefty (weight and price) integrated amplifier with Room Correction.

I’m a convert.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Sun Feb 10, 2019 4:53 pm
by Kenkat
GmanJeff wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 4:34 pm
TomatoTomahto wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 2:28 pm

I’m a huge fan of Anthem Room Correction software for those looking to upgrade amps or processors.
This is a good, related, point. Well-applied equalization can make a big difference in how your system performs. In addition to Anthem's tool, Audyssey Room Correction is available in Denon and other brands of receiver. Trinnov is a 3rd such technology. Using such technology in combination with good speakers will very likely provide a much greater improvement in sound quality than new speakers alone.
My new(er) Yamaha receiver has this feature and it made a big difference in sound quality with my existing speaker set up (4 Paradigm in walls, Klipsch center and Sony sub).

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Sun Feb 10, 2019 7:04 pm
by ttjt_99
carol-brennan wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 2:09 pm
Take that money burning a hole in your pocket and put it in a CD or something.

The 301s are fine. I'll keep mine till I die.
Very good advice I’ll probably wind up following.

I did rerun my Sony’s calibration and it did set my speakers somewhat appropriately. I had to make a few tweaks.

With my new sub, all the speakers are now sounding full and beautiful.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Sun Feb 10, 2019 7:17 pm
by Doom&Gloom
ttjt_99 wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 7:04 pm
carol-brennan wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 2:09 pm
Take that money burning a hole in your pocket and put it in a CD or something.

The 301s are fine. I'll keep mine till I die.
Very good advice I’ll probably wind up following.

I did rerun my Sony’s calibration and it did set my speakers somewhat appropriately. I had to make a few tweaks.

With my new sub, all the speakers are now sounding full and beautiful.
Wonderful result!

Upgrade fever spreads like wildfire. Sometimes it is great to give in to it. Other times it is great to resist! :beer

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Sun Feb 10, 2019 7:52 pm
by ttjt_99
Doom&Gloom wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 7:17 pm
ttjt_99 wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 7:04 pm
carol-brennan wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 2:09 pm
Take that money burning a hole in your pocket and put it in a CD or something.

The 301s are fine. I'll keep mine till I die.
Very good advice I’ll probably wind up following.

I did rerun my Sony’s calibration and it did set my speakers somewhat appropriately. I had to make a few tweaks.

With my new sub, all the speakers are now sounding full and beautiful.


Wonderful result!

Upgrade fever spreads like wildfire. Sometimes it is great to give in to it. Other times it is great to resist! :beer
You’re exactly right. It’s hard to fight sometimes, but you just gotta say if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Sun Feb 10, 2019 10:19 pm
by keanoz
ttjt_99 wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 7:52 pm
Doom&Gloom wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 7:17 pm
ttjt_99 wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 7:04 pm
carol-brennan wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 2:09 pm
Take that money burning a hole in your pocket and put it in a CD or something.

The 301s are fine. I'll keep mine till I die.
Very good advice I’ll probably wind up following.

I did rerun my Sony’s calibration and it did set my speakers somewhat appropriately. I had to make a few tweaks.

With my new sub, all the speakers are now sounding full and beautiful.


Wonderful result!

Upgrade fever spreads like wildfire. Sometimes it is great to give in to it. Other times it is great to resist! :beer
You’re exactly right. It’s hard to fight sometimes, but you just gotta say if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
been itching to change my system as well but it is just an unnecessary waste of money

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Sun Feb 10, 2019 10:46 pm
by abc...xyz
TomatoTomahto wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 2:28 pm
Dottie57 wrote:
Fri Feb 08, 2019 8:10 pm
abc...xyz wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 4:13 pm
This thread is making me feel old… still using the pair of Magnepan MG-III speakers and Hafler DH500 power amp that I bought back in 1984! Back then it was strictly an audio setup also using a Dynaco PAT4 preamp and AF6 tuner. Later replaced the PAT4 preamp with a Hafler DH101 preamp.

Then came home theater… added a Magnepan CC2 center channel, Velodyne F1800XR sub, Yamaha receiver and fairly cheap rear surrounds. Still using this setup today, but it’s about time for a receiver upgrade.

:sharebeer
Lucky person to have Magnepan speakers. I heard a pair at a friends house. They were hug but sounded great.
Martin Logan’s sound “similar,” even though the technology is slightly different. They’re not small, but their visual effect is moderated because the panels are see through.

Martin Logan, Anthem, and Blu Vault (or whatever the streaming server is called) rekindled our music listening.

I’m a huge fan of Anthem Room Correction software for those looking to upgrade amps or processors.
I wasn’t planning on buying a pair of speakers when I went into one of the local HiFi shops to listen to the DH500 power amp back in 1984, but they demoed the amp with the ‘new’ Magnepan MG-III speakers and I was blown away by the clarity and definition of the highs. I’d listened to a pair of MG-II speakers a few years before, but the new 5’ line-source ribbon-tweeter of the MG-III put the speakers into a whole new class. After visiting every other local HiFi shop and all of the shops that I could find in Orlando during a business trip, I finally succumbed and bought a pair of the MG-IIIs. The only other speaker that made my short list was the B&W 801. There were a lot of other great speakers during that period… Acoustat electrostatic (don’t believe the Martin-Logins hit the market until a little later), Bose 901, Ohm with the Walsh tweeters or ESS with the HEIL Air Motion tweeters and some of the KEFs. Speakers have improved a lot over the years, and there's a lot of great speakers on the market today.

I agree with TomatoTomahto about the room acoustics and equalization being as important a factor as the speakers themselves. Back in the stereo days when there was only 2 speakers I’d bought a Technics SH-8000 Audio Frequency Analyzer that had an audio tone generator, sound-pressure meter and calibrated microphone which allowed you to manually plot out the room response, tweak something in the room placement and repeat the room measurement. The newer receivers with automated room correction sure make things easier, especially now that we’re dealing with 5-9 speakers in a home theater setup! I’m sure that the auto room correction features have improved vastly over my 10 year old receiver so that’s why I’m starting to get the upgrade bug!

ttjt_99, congratulations on the new sub! A good sub really adds to the ‘action’ of action movies.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:15 am
by TomatoTomahto
^ I had a pair of Acoustats in an apartment. They were 7’ 11” tall, and my ceiling was 8’ tall, so on a lark I placed spikes on the bottom and on top. That’s when I first heard a perfect soundstage. The problem with those kinds of speakers back then (ribbons and electrostatics) was keeping the frame still while the membrane moves; spikes did it. Somehow, Martin Logan solved the issue in the decades since my Acoustats, because my MLs image eerily well.

ETA: after years of never quite getting my active Linn speakers to sound right, especially in their integration with my REL sub, I had moved to soundbars and stopped listening to music as an activity. Room correction software reopened my ears. And streaming (TIDAL) is so much more handy now.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 1:58 pm
by Ged
TomatoTomahto wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 4:45 pm

I didn’t want to let a good piece of electronics go to waste, but I bought Anthem’s cheapest 5.2 receiver (MRX520), used the calibrated mike and software: voila. When we decided to add music to our living room, I bought Amthem’s hefty (weight and price) integrated amplifier with Room Correction.

I’m a convert.
Some 10-15 years ago I bought an Anthem D2V and used it as the heart of my home entertainment system. Recently I replaced it with a AVM-60 to gain access to 4K video handling. ARC is a very good technology.

I considered some of the higher end equipment with Dirac or Trinnov but decided to keep the cost moderate.

As far as subwoofers go my recommendation would be to look at Seaton Sound products. I have one of their subwoofers and am happy with it. They are a small outfit but their quality is excellent for the money.

For main speakers my best recommendation is to choose carefully. There are a lot of products on the market that are mediocre, over priced and survive by heavy marketing. Bose is a case study in this.

The respondent who suggested NHT, Paradigm and PSB listed some products I would give serious consideration in their price ranges.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2019 4:35 pm
by eddot98
While the 901’s are great, at least as I remember them from the 1970’s, they need to be set up in a specific way that isn’t doable in all rooms; plus they do dominate the appearance of a room. For that reason, we got the AM-5’s several years ago. We are very happy with them. Before that, we had four large Advent speakers, but time took its toll and the speakers dried out and needed work that we didn’t want to do.

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Wed Feb 13, 2019 10:33 am
by Grantley
I gave away my older B&W 602 S2's because for me they were a little harsh on the high end. When I purchased them in 2000 they were considered about the best in that price range.

I am a big fan of Ascend Accoustics. I've bought 3 different sets and love them all. They are a small, American-made direct to consumer company not sold in stores. Many speakers have a certain color to them but Ascend prides itself on not adding anything to the sound. They have a free return policy so you can try them out.

http://www.ascendacoustics.com/

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Wed Feb 13, 2019 12:59 pm
by JackieBog46
I would highly recommend buying used Usher Be-718 speakers. You can get them for a good price now. Best speakers I've ever owned. They like 100W+. Here's a review:

https://www.soundstage.com/revequip/ush ... _be718.htm

Re: Upgrade from Bose 301

Posted: Wed Feb 13, 2019 1:19 pm
by Doom&Gloom
Grantley wrote:
Wed Feb 13, 2019 10:33 am
I gave away my older B&W 602 S2's because for me they were a little harsh on the high end. When I purchased them in 2000 they were considered about the best in that price range.

I am a big fan of Ascend Accoustics. I've bought 3 different sets and love them all. They are a small, American-made direct to consumer company not sold in stores. Many speakers have a certain color to them but Ascend prides itself on not adding anything to the sound. They have a free return policy so you can try them out.

http://www.ascendacoustics.com/
+1 for Ascend. I recently bought a pair of CMT-340s to upgrade the den vacated by DS when he left for college. I really like them. Wish I had a need for their higher end speakers, but I think we're now set in all areas. At least until my Squeezebox Boom in the other den/kitchen dies :(