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Is it time for active speakers?

Discussion in 'audio' started by kc5819w, Jun 16, 2017.

  1. kc5819w

    kc5819w pfm Member

    Having owned quite a number of speakers and equipment over the years

    This isn’t an argument that active speakers are always better, but it’s interesting that they just aren’t more popular in the home, and yet are ubiquitous in the studio. The "BBC monitors" of today are rarely used in hifi.

    With an increasing number of active consumer hifi speakers now entering the market, is it finally time for widespread active speaker use in the home?
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2018
  2. evand

    evand pfm Member

    Have had ATCSCM100ASL's since 2004 and have never looked back or itched to replace them, and I've listened to many really good setups over the years. Not one has left me feeling I'm missing something.
  3. garyi

    garyi leave blank

    I remember a mates dads hifi of a meridian active set up, stunning sound.
  4. mercalia

    mercalia pfm Member

    not a good idea - speaker cable is generally cheap, interconnects are not - 3 metre will cost quite a few pennies is more fragile. when it becomes digital maybe
  5. Whaleblue

    Whaleblue The Mighty Deoxitiser

    A joke? You surely don't actually mean this?
  6. Rodney gold

    Rodney gold Im just me...

    I have had actives , dsp actives etc .. but with my "end" system..I chose passives.
    However had the beolab 90 been available for audition , I might have chosen them.
  7. david ellwood

    david ellwood Kirabosi Kognoscente

    In splitting the signal into discrete bands you make the signal much more susceptible to interconnect quality difference. At least £800 per interconnect is required in an active system. Which is why they're so expensive compared to passive.

    Only on a hi-fi forum would you need to ask if the above is a joke.
  8. Octavian

    Octavian pfm Member

    Active loudspeakers may be a sensible choice. But high end consumer audio is based on faith and opinions of gurus.
  9. poco a poco

    poco a poco pfm Member

    I,m glad that there does seem to be a greater acceptance of the merits of active loudspeakers these days, though it does seem mainly at lower end of the market as 'add ons to computer systems. Still not much penetration with 'hardcore' HiFi enthusiasts that like to swop boxes.

    Personally I have always appreciated the benefits and sound quality obtainable and have used them continuously from the late 1970's. First Meridian M1's and still with my modified Meridian M10's that I have had since the early 80's.

    There have been a very few passive speakers that when correctly driven I have preferred over the years, (e.g. Apogee Scintilla's, the larger Vivids), but my room sizes and or price have prevented purchase.
  10. PeterBCN

    PeterBCN pfm Member

    I had a pair of Paradigm Active 20 speakers paired with an Adcom CD player with variable outputs (build in volume control) as my first real HIFI system in the late 90's.

    Price performance you couldn't get anything better at the time.

    In all honesty, I don't think HIFI has evolved significantly in the past decades. Another way to look at it is that other factors such as room and speaker positioning have an overwhelmingly more decisive contribution to "Sound Quality" that the "minor" advancements in electronics and, dare I say, speaker design.

    My understanding is that the amplifier in an active setup is custom build to maximize the speaker performance so it's a match made in heaven.

    You can get a good pair of actives for not so much money nowadays. Connect it a Chromecast Audio streamer direct to your PC, tablet or phone with Spotify premium in 320 kbps and you've got a killer system.

    Just my 2 cents.
  11. AndyU

    AndyU pfm Member

    That has to definitely be a joke. Please, it's a joke. Please be a joke. Not a very good joke, but a joke. Right? You're joking? Tell us you're joking. Please.
  12. narabdela

    narabdela who?

    Ain't that the truth. :(

    See above.
  13. Cereal Killer

    Cereal Killer fourhundredandthirtytwo

    I'm of the same conclusion too.
  14. adamdea

    adamdea pfm Member

    The only drawbacks of actives IMHO are that
    -you need to get power to them
    -you have fewer boxes to swap
    - at the moment there is less choice
  15. Cereal Killer

    Cereal Killer fourhundredandthirtytwo

    I just sold a 6.5m pair of ATCs XLR>XLR cables for £50.... no, those dots are not really really small zeros
  16. rbrown

    rbrown I think therefore I think I am

    Mine are connected with XLR cables from a guitar shop and I got change out of £30.

  17. Whaleblue

    Whaleblue The Mighty Deoxitiser

    Only on a HiFi forum would the idea that cables need to cost £hundreds to work correctly be considered anything other than a joke.

    Oh good, I've managed to help turn this into a cable thread. My sincere apologies to all.
  18. Whaleblue

    Whaleblue The Mighty Deoxitiser

    The main blocker, I'd imagine, is that for most folk speakers are part of home AV systems. I'm not aware of many 'consumer' multi-channel pre-amps? As Adam mentioned earlier, perhaps one of the other key issues then becomes getting power to those 5/7 speakers?
  19. david ellwood

    david ellwood Kirabosi Kognoscente

    I've been active for about a quarter of a century and can
    Allay any concerns regarding box count.

    My system currently stands at 10 boxes just for amplification. (Not including phono as its in the plinth)
  20. mercalia

    mercalia pfm Member

    maybe they are good cables I dont know but many well regarded interconnects are not eg Van Den Hul D102 I have used for a long time - I see the real price these days for .8m is about £150. So the cost of 6 m 2x3m would not be cheap running into the £100's. So am I joking? - well I just looked in the mirror and my face dont seem to be laughing.

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